A/N: Sadly, this is the last chapter. But we must move on! ^.^ For a summary and excerpt of the sequel, Remember You, read my a/n's at the end of the chapter. They seem long, but I promise, it's only the excerpt making it seem that way. ^.^ Enjoy!

Let the Darkness Take You

Chapter Sixteen


Over the next couple of days, Harry could tell that a strain was being put on Ron and Hermione's relationship. Hermione had been trying to talk some sense into Ron about Harry. So far, it had not been very successful, but the upside was, was that Ron had finally conceded to sitting with Harry and Hermione during meals and classes. Otherwise, he would go off somewhere with Seamus, Dean, and Neville. Harry, Hermione, and Draco would then spend their time doing things together, and Harry was very happy to see the two getting along very well. Though Draco would sometimes let something slip about Hermione's heritage, the Gryffindors would do their best to ignore it; it was due to the way Draco had grown up.

However, Draco would never get away without a reprimanding look or comment from Harry.

The fourth night after Harry's return to the school, Harry was walking from Dumbledore's office to his room, when somebody stopped him by placing a hand on his shoulder. Harry turned around, and was surprised to see Ron standing behind him.

"Ron! Er - hi."

"Hi. I was just wondering, could we just um... talk somewhere in private?"

Hope filled Harry's heart and he almost smiled. However, the thought that Ron could just want to talk to permanently end their friendship, made the smile stop before it had time to begin. "Er - sure. Let's go to my room then. I was just going there." Harry motioned with his hand for Ron to follow him, and they walked silently through the corridors, up a flight of stairs, and to Harry's room on the third floor.

"This is where you've been all this time?"

"Yeah. 'Slyfferin'." The door opened and Ron raised an eyebrow.


"Hermione did it. She thought my other password was a little... offensive. Which I suppose it was."

"What was it?"

"Erm - 'Gryffindor really sucks.' I wasn't really myself and I was still a bit sore on you, Seamus, and Dean trying to beat me up."

"Oh, right," Ron said, looking ashamed by staring at his shoes.

They started to walk in, Harry in the lead. Laughter erupted inside; and Harry found Hermione and Draco playing Exploding Snap together. Draco had singed his eyebrows pretty recently since all the cards were strewn all over the place. Harry snorted.

  "Nice look. You should shave your head to complete the 'I'm a hairless cat' look."

Draco scowled as Hermione continued to laugh. "At least I don't look like a shaggy dog."

  "A strangely attractive shaggy dog," Harry smirked.

  "Oh, dear Merlin," Hermione said faintly. "You really have been spending too much time with this Slytherin git this year. You sounded and looked exactly like him just then."

Harry winked and sent her a dazzling smile, then turned around to look at Ron, who was still standing in the doorway, out of sight from the other two. "Come on, then."

"I... I wanted to talk to you in private."

  "Just come in. They'll give us some privacy."

Reluctantly, Ron came in and shut the door behind him. Upon seeing him, Hermione sent him a bright smile, then stood up, tugged on Draco's arm and began to leave the room. "You two have much talking you need to do. Draco and I will go keep ourselves busy for a while."

"Hermione?" Ron asked confused.

  "Don't worry, we won't be getting dirty with each other, Ron," Hermione explained, clearly amused.

  "Yes, no worries, Wea... Ron. I'm interested in your best friend, but not the one on my arm right now."

  Hermione smacked Draco upside the head, laughed nervously, and then left the room in a hurry. Harry felt himself turn red, so he turned around to hide it and went to the windows to watch his never-ending Quidditch game. "Um... I'll ask about that comment later," Ron said faintly after a few moments.

"And I'll be sure to answer it..." Harry turned and looked at Ron beseechingly. "I'm so sorry, Ron. You have to believe me, that that wasn't me. I would never purposely torture you, or try to kill you. I could never...."

"Stop. Please. I know that you were brainwashed. I know that Sirius did it to you. I know that Sirius did everything that has happened in the past months. But you have to understand that it's still hard to look at you the same way after seeing you point your wand at me, casting the Cruciatus curse on me, about to cast the Killing curse.... I'll never forget it."

"I know. I'm so sorry, Ron."

"Stop apologising. It's not your fault. What I'm wondering is, how can you still look at me the same?"

"What do you mean?"

"I mean, after everything I've said and done this year, you still want to be my friend. You seem to be perfectly fine with it all. How could you still want to be near me?"

"It's because you're my best friend. You were the thing I missed the most in fourth year for a reason, you know. This year I actually got to know how much I would miss you. The things said and done to me did hurt. They hurt a lot, especially when you punched me." Harry cracked a small smile that was returned hesitantly as Harry continued. "But the thing is, I'm willing to be your friend again because I know that it wasn't really you. It was the curse and potion at work. I don't expect anything from you because what I did was ten times wor... umph!"

Harry was stopped in the middle of his thoughts as Ron attacked him with a very rough hug. Very slowly, Harry returned it. He was taken by surprise. Never in all the years of their friendship, could Harry remember Ron actually hugging him. Usually it was just a friendly slap on the back, or a handshake, but now, Ron was actually hugging him. Harry let out a relieved laugh and hugged his friend tighter. "I've missed you a lot, mate," Ron said quietly. "Get it straight, that if you apologise once more, I will finish the job that I started months ago with Seamus and Dean." They pulled away from each other when Harry laughed.

  "You think you actually could?"

"Well, if you didn't play so dirty last time, I would have beaten you."

"If it hadn't been so serious, I wouldn't have kicked you there. Sorry for that."

  "I'll let that one slide. I'm sorry for trying to beat you up."

  "Apology accepted, you fat arse."

"No need for name calling now, you four-eyed geek."

Harry let out a genuine laugh and clapped Ron on the shoulder. "It's good to have you back."

"It's good to be back. Now... what is this with Draco Malfoy? Was he kidding about being interested in you?"

Harry started to steer Ron over to the couch and sat him down. "Ron, my friend. There's something I need to tell you..."

"What?" Ron asked warily as Harry sat beside him.

"For one, and I think I should get this out of the way right away. At the beginning of term, Ginny was kind of my girlfriend."


"Don't freak out, please."

"What do you mean kind of?"

"We were more like... snogging partners." Ron's blue eyes bulged out of his head, but Harry rushed on before he could start yelling. "For about one week, mind you. Then Sirius got to her as well."

"Good thing too. Do you still fancy her?"

"Not really. I think she's beautiful and everything, but redheads just don't do it for me."

"And who does?" Ron asked suspiciously.

"Er - I like blondes," Harry replied quietly.

"Not Pansy Parkinson?!"

"No. Think of all the little pug puppies running around if I were to marry her. Ugh, no." Harry shuddered.

"Then... Lavender right? She isn't so bad."

Harry sighed. "I'll be a bit more specific. I like blondes... who aren't girls." Ron stared at Harry as if this information didn't enter his head completely and Harry was starting to fidget under his gaze. Harry waved a hand in front of Ron's face and got no reaction. "Ron... did you hear me? I'm gay, and I like blondes. A blonde Slytherin." Still no reaction.

  "Oh for Merlin's sake! I'm in love with Draco Malfoy, Ron! Snap out of it!"

"Are you sure?" Ron finally asked.

  "Sure that I'm gay? Yes, I'm sure."

"No. I don't care that you're gay. Whatever makes your wand spark." Ron winced at the innuendo and Harry smirked. "Are you sure about Malfoy?"

"Draco," Harry corrected. "And yes, I am. He doesn't know that I love him, or at least I don't think he does."

  "Does he love you?"

"He said he did the night I went to Voldemort, but then I broke up with him. You noticed all those fights we had? That was when we had broken up. I don't know if he still does though. He's still interested, obviously."

Ron looked at Harry with the most miserable look in his eyes that Harry just knew that he was going to break off their friendship. "Then, does this mean I have to try and get along with the bugger?"

Harry only stared for a few moments before breaking out into relieved hysterical laughter. "If you could," he replied after he gained control. "And I think his name is Draco. Not the little bugger, or Malfoy."

  A deep sigh. "Bugger."


"You aggravating, little bugger. Go... go bugger off!"

"No. I like to stay here, Ginger. I'm friends with Harry and Hermione."

"So am I! And stop calling me Ginger!"

"I never said anything to the contrary. I'll stop calling you Ginger when you stop calling me little bugger. It's quite embarrassing you know, to be called from across the Great Hall, by 'hey, you little blonde bugger, get your fat arse over here!' I'm getting quite sick of the word."

  Harry sighed from his chair in front of the fire. Ron and Draco had been carrying on in this vain for the past two days, since Harry and Ron's make-up. Harry now had a constant headache. He leaned over the arm of his chair and grabbed Hermione's arm. "Help me, I'm going insane."

  "You and me both."

  "Do you mind if I go for a walk by myself? I need to walk off this headache, I think."

  "Go ahead. I'll just put a silencing charm on them."

  "Good luck."

  Harry quickly vacated the room and walked around the mostly deserted castle, thinking about the past few days. All three of his friends had been trying to get him to open up a little about Sirius, but he retained that he was fine on the topic and told them to drop it. They knew he wasn't fine, and so did Harry, but he wasn't about to admit it. Just thinking of Sirius put an ache inside of him that he knew would never go away. Talking about him didn't seem too appealing. The last thing Harry needed was to break down in hysterical tears over the bastard. Harry was immersed so deeply in his thoughts that he wasn't paying attention to where he was going. As he rounded a corner on the fifth floor, he collided with somebody with his head. He closed his eyes and held onto his head.

"Oh, Merlin. That doesn't help this headache."

"Well, maybe you should stop hanging out with both Ron and Draco so much. It would be enough to give anybody a headache."

  Looking up, Harry looked up at his crash victim. "Ginny," he breathed.

"Hello, Harry."

An awkward silence fell on them as they continued to stare at each other. It was finally broken when Ginny started to apologise repeatedly for being so dumb. Harry went through the process he had gone through about hundreds of times the past week. People were always approaching him and telling them how sorry they were for being so rude to him. He'd always tell them it wasn't their fault and they shouldn't be apologising, which is exactly what he did with Ginny as well. She seemed to accept it, but then as they fell silent, it became awkward again, this time for a completely different reason.

"Er - Ginny, don't be mad at me. I don't really know how you feel about me anymore, but the truth is... I don't have any feelings for you besides for friendship. I wanted to tell you before Sirius got to you. But I was a little late. That's what I was going to tell you when you pretty much told me to sod off."

To Harry's surprise, Ginny sighed and smiled. "Don't worry about it, Harry. I had been wanting to tell you the same thing, but I never would have told you, I think. You were already hurting from rejection so much, I just couldn't bring myself to do it."

"Really? But I thought you liked me?"

"Oh, I did. Then once something started happening, I just figured out that I didn't love you the way I thought I once did. So... is Hermione telling the truth? Did you really fall in love?" Harry blushed crimson and looked down.

"I suppose. Yes."

"It's Draco, isn't it?"


"I guessed with Hermione. I asked her yesterday if you two had feelings for each other. She looked so shocked that I knew it was true. So, she told me how you two first kissed and everything. I'm really happy for you. I can tell by the way Draco looks at you that he really loves you."

"Really?" Harry asked hopefully.

"Yeah. Can't you tell?"

"Um... well, we're not actually together right now. I sort of broke up with him the night I went to Voldemort."

Ginny smiled and took Harry's hand in her own to squeeze it gently. "It's never too late." She kissed his cheek, bid him goodnight and walked in the direction of Gryffindor tower. Harry watched her go, smiling broadly. Having Sirius in his life hadn't gone the way as planned, but he could make Draco go right. It made Harry a bit nervous to think about. The two boys hadn't spoken about anything that had transpired between them, and Harry didn't know if Draco really was all right with what Harry had done. With it in mind to speak with the Slytherin, Harry set off at a fast pace to his dorm, hoping to catch Draco before he left to the Slytherin dormitories. After muttering the password, Harry went quietly in to find Draco sleeping on the bed, hands behind his head, and feet crossed. Harry stopped to look at him.

Draco looked every bit the sophisticated aristocrat. A moonbeam shone in from the window, lighting up his pale face and hair, giving him an angelic appearance. His chest rose and fell in a steady rhythm, making his robes fall off his chest to the bed, revealing his black jumper. Harry finally made his feet move to the bed, where he climbed on and sat on his knees beside the boy. He unnecessarily pushed back a piece of blond hair from Draco's face, and watched with bated breath as the silver eyes fluttered open.

"I'm sorry," he muttered groggily. "Did you want to go to bed?"

"No. I'm wide awake. Where did Ron and Hermione go?"

"Um..." Draco scratched his head as his sleep addled brain attempted to remember. "Hermione said she'd do his favourite thing if he would just shut up and leave me alone for five minutes. They left after two minutes."

Harry snickered as Draco's eyes fell shut once again. After a few minutes of watching Draco sleeping again, Harry couldn't help but run his hand along the smooth skin of the cheek. Draco woke again and mock glared.

"Was this your intention at coming back here? To keep me away from my beauty sleep?"

"No. Sorry. I couldn't help it."

"Oh. As long as you're sorry.


"Hmm?" Draco replied, eyes falling closed again.

"Are we okay?"

"Well, of course we are."

"Good. I've really missed you."

"I'm right here, Harry."

"I know that. But I miss you."

  Draco looked up at Harry again and studied his face. "I'm sorry. I don't think I understand."

"Neither do I," Harry breathed as he began to lean down. Their lips brushed together so softly that if they hadn't known better, it could have been mistaken as breath brushing across their pink flesh. "I love you so much," Harry whispered against his lips. Harry felt and heard Draco's breath hitch before he twined his hand into Harry's hair.

  "I love you, too."


Their lips met again. Harry wanted to savour this moment. He didn't want anything to go too fast. He drank in the softness of Draco's lips before he let their tongues meet in a slow, tender kiss. Draco pulled Harry down so that they were both lying on their sides, arms wrapped around each other. When Draco sighed with content into Harry's mouth, they pulled away and stared into each other's eyes.

"I never thought you'd come around, Harry."

  "What do you mean?"

"I was waiting for you to make the first move. You knew how I feel about you, I still wasn't sure how you felt about me. Even when you told me while you were dreaming."

"That was real?"

"Yes. I had to talk you back. Everything we said was real."

"Thank you."

Draco smiled softly. "You're welcome," he said quietly and kissed Harry again. "Let's go to bed. I'm so tired. You're keeping me up."

  "Such a whiner," Harry joked as he sat up to pull off his and Draco's shoes. They pulled back the blankets together and climbed under, once again finding comfort in each other's arms. They shared a few more kisses, snuggled closer together and closed their eyes.

  "Love you," they whispered in unison before falling into a peaceful sleep.


The next month passed by quickly for Harry. Things couldn't have gotten any better with Draco, and things with Ron were going just as well. Ron was still having difficulties with getting along with Draco, but the two were making definite progress with each other. Keeping in mind that Ron was still a little grossed out with seeing his best friend and former enemy kiss, Harry made sure that they kept that sort of stuff to themselves. Hermione was a lot better with it. She positively beamed at the two every time she caught them kissing, holding hands, hugging, or snuggling together on the couch.

  For Draco's part, he was doing particularly well. The comments on Hermione's heritage were rarely, if ever heard anymore. Sometimes, Harry would catch him biting his lip to keep from saying something about it. At these times, it was the most apparent just how much Draco loved Harry if he was willing to push aside his upbringings for Harry. Draco was rewarded very well for these times. Harry wondered sometimes if that was more his motive for doing it than anything else.

For Harry's part, he was doing well with everything, if he didn't think about Sirius. It was a topic that was just not brought up around Harry, unless he did it himself; and it was something that his friends, and boyfriend respected. That is, until the middle of May sprout up on them. No news of Sirius had been in the papers, nor had anybody been talking about it in school. Dumbledore was keeping a tight lip about it, so Harry wasn't asking. He knew what would happen anyhow. The jury would convict Sirius, if he had not been already, and he would spend the rest of his life in an anti-animagus cell in Azkaban.

When spring became evident in the air, with flowers blooming, birds chirping, the sun shining merrily down on them, the squid coming up for air, so that he too could enjoy a little sun, Draco began to act increasingly peculiar and, more and more out of character. So much so, that Harry started to worry about him. One day after dinner, Harry had invited Draco for a walk. They weren't worried to be seen together, since the school now knew that the infamous rivalry between the Gryffindor and Slytherin had been put to rest. Of course, they didn't know the extent of the relationship.

  Harry was walking slowly on the shore of the lake, behind his boyfriend, who was oddly, practically dancing along ahead of him. "Erm - Draco? Are you feeling okay?"

Draco stopped, turned around and offered Harry a beatific smile. "Of course I'm feeling fine! I love spring. Don't you?"

"Yes, I do. But seriously, what's up with you? You're kind of starting to worry me."

Harry took a few surprised steps back when Draco skipped to him. "Don't you ever read the paper?"

"Not lately, no. Why?"

"My father has been caught! Can you believe it? He's in the Ministry's custody and they're saying that he has no chance to get out of it. He was caught with the Death Eaters, shooting the mark up into the sky. That's one less person who wants to kill me!"

  Harry smiled a little at his enthusiasm over such a depressing subject. "One down, fifty to go, huh?"

"Exactly. You should know how I feel. Voldemort isn't exactly happy with you either."

"Well, it's not like he's not the one who set himself up for a big disappointment. I didn't join him willingly. He should have known that somehow, I'd be returned to myself."

Draco kissed Harry sweetly, grabbed his hand and they began walking together. "Has he sent you anymore dreams?"

"Not in a couple days, no. The last one I was sent was with Sirius, when he was being initiated."

"He sends you things from the past?"

"Yeah. Anything that he knows will hurt me. I think he's trying to get me to join him again."

"Stupid bugger."

  "You sound like Ron," Harry laughed.

"It's not my fault you make me hang out with him so much. I swear I'll go blind if I have to look at that hair for another minute."

  "Such a complainer," Harry said before sighing deeply.

  "Hey. What's wrong?"


Draco turned Harry towards himself and wrapped his arms around his waist. That odd, happy glow was back in the silver eyes, and Harry couldn't help but be confused. "What are you so happy about?"

"Just... I suggest you read the papers more."


  "Oh, nothing. Just do it."

Harry nodded his head, kissed Draco once, and then pulled him to keep walking. "Come on. Let's go inside." Just as they were walking into the front doors of the castle, a dog's bark sounded through the darkening sky.


The bright sunlight shining through the windows was what woke Harry again this morning. He smiled at it and rolled out of bed. As he was changing from his pyjamas to his weekend clothes, a groan came from the bed and the sound of somebody patting the bed. "Where'd you go, Harry?"

  "I'm getting up."

"Are you going to read the paper?"

  "After a walk. The sun is looking too inviting right now."

"I'd join you... but it's Saturday... and only eight. Goodnight."

"Good morning, Draco. I'll see you later."

After kissing Draco's forehead, Harry left his room, and started for the doors. He was once again immersed in sad thoughts of Sirius, with his head bowed. So much so, in fact, that he didn't notice when a person walked right into his path in the entrance hall, until they nearly collided, but the other person grabbed Harry's arms to make him stop.

  "Wha'?" Harry pulled out of the grip and looked up. "Oh!" he exclaimed. "Um - hello, Remus," he said awkwardly.

"Hello," he said so quietly that Harry could have sworn that it almost was not said at all. The two shifted in awkward silence for a few moments before Remus pulled Harry into a tight hug. Harry tensed up at first but quickly relaxed into it.

"I've missed talking to you, Remus."

"I've missed talking to you as well, Harry."

"What are you doing here?"

"Oh. Well, I did come here to see you, to apolo..."

"Please don't. Everybody else has and it's not anybody's fault... except for.... Never mind. It's not your fault."

Remus smiled sadly. "Yes. Well, that wasn't the only reason I came here. I'm sort of here as a mediator."

"For what exactly?"

"I've brought somebody else here with me. He insisted on it actually because he doesn't think you'll want to speak with him."

"Who is it?"

"Before you see him, promise you won't do anything you may regret later."

"Um... okay," Harry replied, completely bewildered. Lupin's eyes looked past Harry just as somebody else placed a hand on his shoulder. Harry turned around to be faced by Sirius Black. Emerald eyes hardened and he backed into Remus, who pushed him back. Sirius's eyes had so many emotions running through them. He was scared, beseeching, and apologetic. But none of this mattered to Harry.

"Aren't you supposed to be in Azkaban now?" Harry spit out.

"I feel like I should be, yes."

"Well then get out of my sight! Why do you think I should talk to you? You're nothing. You're a filthy Death Eater. I don't know why I ever wasted my breath on you."

A pained look flashed across Sirius's face, and for a moment, Harry stopped, wondering what was going on. "I deserve that."

"You're bloody right, you do! Does Dumbledore know you're here? Remus, why did you bring him?"

  "He needs to talk to you."

"I don't think he deserves that chance. I bet you were laughing the whole time you were gaining my trust, weren't you, Black?" Harry felt the tears starting to form, so before he could let Sirius see them fall, he ran out the door of the castle, in the general direction of the lake. Down at the shore where he and Draco had been the night before, Harry sat, and started picking through the grass for rocks hidden so that he could throw them in the water. Once he had a good-sized pile, he crossed his legs and began skipping the rocks across the water. The ripples would disappear and the lake would become calm again before Harry would throw another one in, to watch it skip two or three times before sinking to the bottom.

"Who taught you how to do that?" asked a voice behind him after his fourth rock.

"Draco. We were out here for four hours a couple weeks ago, skipping rocks. I was lousy at first."

"Hmm... are you talking about Draco Malfoy?"


"I didn't know you were friends."

"Mmm.... He's my boyfriend," Harry found himself saying, not really caring anymore who he was talking to, or that somebody else was in on their secret. He was sick of hiding it.

"Boyfriend, huh? I never knew you were gay."

"Me either."

  "When did you find out?"

"When I started to like Draco this year. Do you have a problem with it or something?"

  "No. Of course not. I'm not about to tell you that you're in the wrong and that you should force it down and start liking girls."

"Good. Because I wouldn't. I've already tried with Ginny. I didn't even have time to tell her I didn't really like her when that bastard got to her." With a small grunt, Harry threw another rock in the lake. It sank like a rock on the first hit. With a new wave of fury, Harry kicked his foot out, sending his pile of rocks into the waters that were lapping the shore. "Well, it's been a pleasure, but I'm going to go eat breakfast with Draco, if he's..." Harry stopped because at that moment, he looked at his companion. "Oh, bloody wonderful. I really needed you to know that I'm gay. Are you going to use this as more ammunition for me with Voldemort? I can just imagine you going to him on your bloody hands and knees, snivelling to him, saying 'My lord, Harry Potter is a faggot with Draco Malfoy.' You'll enjoy seeing him killed off, won't you?"

Harry stood up and was about to walk away but Sirius pulled him back down. "Please. Just listen to me, Harry. Please."

"Fine. Five minutes, then I'm leaving."

  "Fair enough.... Harry, I know that I don't deserve your forgiveness. It would be nice, but it's not what I'm here for. I'm here to at least try to make you understand."

"Try to understand why you willingly went to the man who killed my parents?"

"Please, let me speak. I do have a limited time here."

"Wait, no! I don't want to hear you speak right now. You have no idea what I've been going through this past month and a half, Sirius! Actually, scratch that, you have no idea what I've gone through since my birthday last year. I was so excited to come live with you, but then you came to the Dursley's telling me I looked like a ponce, that you didn't have room in your manor for me. A manor for Merlin's sake, Sirius. Even the Dursley's spare me a room in that box they live in, and they hate me more than you do." Sirius opened his mouth to say something but Harry clapped his hand over it, stemming any protestations.

"You have no idea how much I wished that it was just an act for the Dursleys. Then when I got on the train, Ron and Hermione were acting the same way as you. Then you came, acting all happy towards them, but nasty towards me... I didn't know what to think. Then I went to find another compartment, but the only person who would let me sit with them is Draco Malfoy. And he was my enemy. My enemy let me sit with him before my closest friends did. You did that Sirius. You made them hate me.

  "To top it all off, you almost killed me in the process of getting people to hate me. Just for a little blood! I still don't know how you managed to put that spell on me, but I know you're the one who was brainwashing me now. I don't know how I didn't recognise your voice, but I didn't.

"Sirius, I don't think you realise all the things you did to me. You made me become the thing that I have most despised since finding out who I really am. You... you made me become a Death Eater. I almost killed Ron because of you! I..." Without warning for both wizards, Harry burst into tears. They weren't the sort of tears that had escaped almost unnoticed when Sirius first made it known how he felt for Harry, they were terrible gut wrenching sobs that shook his whole body. It was the sum of all the times that Harry had held back the tears, all the times he had held back his rage. They all came out in one moment in front of the one person that he had never wanted to cry in front of. Harry buried his face in his hands, trying to hide, though he knew it was impossible.

Sirius' warm arms embraced Harry in a tight hug. Anger started to build again, though it only came out in more sobs. Harry wanted to cause bodily damage to his godfather, but the only thing he could muster was him punching Sirius very weakly in the chest, repeatedly.

"I hate you," he sobbed out. "I trusted you and you did this to me." He stopped so that he could take in a very chopped- up breath. "I hate you!" he yelled out while still feebly pounding his fists into Sirius's chest. Harry's sobs slowly started to become quieter and quieter, until they were mere sniffles. His body felt exhausted and he fell into his godfather's body, trying to pretend that Sirius hadn't betrayed him in the worst way possible. But, in the end, he knew this wasn't true. This would be the last time they ever hugged, because this would be the last time Harry ever saw, or spoke to the older man. So, in knowing this, Harry let himself be hugged, if only for the minimal amount of comfort it provided. "I hate you for making me love you," he finished quietly.

Sirius sighed and ran a hand through his godson's messy hair. "I'm sorry. I'm sorry for all of those horrible things I did. But, Harry, please listen to me. I never wanted to do those things."

Harry pulled roughly away and hugged his knees to his chest. "So, what was it that made you do it then? Voldemort offered you tons of power, did he? Or maybe a nice fat pay-off? Though I can't really see that happening."

"No. He didn't offer me anything. The only thing he did for me... or rather to me, was to take my mind over. I was under Imperius, Harry."

  Harry snorted. "Right. Now that is just an easy and convenient excuse to get you back on my good side, isn't it?"

"No. It's not an excuse. It's the truth. And something like the Imperius is never an easy excuse when you've actually experienced it. It makes you feel foolish and weak for not being able to fight it off. I was under the Imperius, Harry," Sirius insisted.

"You don't have proof. You're a Death Eater; you have the mark on your arm. There isn't any reason for me to believe you."

"You're right. I don't have proof, but the Ministry does. Don't you ever read the papers?"

"Why does everybody ask me that? No, I haven't read the papers in the past month."

  "Maybe you should read yesterday's paper, then."

"I don't have it, thanks. Have any more foolproof evidence, oh smart one?"

"Please stop with the remarks, Harry. Just for now. If you don't want anything to do with me after today, then make all the remarks you want, okay?"

"Fine," Harry agreed reluctantly.

"Proof," Sirius started and looked out across the lake, a look of deep thought on his face. "I nearly fought the curse off of me at one point. You know, when I... well, when I made you fall down the stairs. I knew what I had done, and told myself that it stopped there. I thought that if I kept going to visit you in the hospital wing that I would be able to, and I nearly did. Then Voldemort called me when I was speaking to you when you woke, and I still wasn't strong enough to fight him off... so he placed it on me again, and I was back where I had started off. After that, they had to place it on me a couple times a week."

"I'm not saying I believe you, but when was the first time it happened? When did Voldemort take you?"

"I think it was about two days after the end of term. They took me from Diagon Alley, placed the curse on me and let me go. They didn't tell me to do anything until your birthday. Well, except to decline any social outings with friends. I only left Black Manor once that entire month, besides for your birthday."

Harry looked down from the lake to his shoes. It was too easy. There was no way that Sirius could have been under the Imperius. He had to have been a Death Eater by choice. The man had plenty of reasons to be...

  Harry sighed. No, he didn't have plenty of reasons to be one. He had plenty of reasons not to be one. Maybe the easy story was the truth. The hard way was just too... complicated. Why would Sirius become a follower of the one man who had basically destroyed his life? The man who had killed two of his best friends, left his godson to become an orphan. Then consequently be sent to Azkaban for actions that he never committed. Then if this story was true, the man who almost made Sirius kill Harry, made him become a Death Eater, made all Harry's friends hate him... Sirius had every reason to not become a Death Eater.

Thinking on everything that had happened since Harry's birthday the previous year, it all seemed to fall into place. At the beginning of term, when Remus had paid a visit to Harry, he had said that Sirius had practically been bouncing off the walls with excitement. Excitement because Harry was going to live with him. Remus had also said that Sirius had declined all his invites to do something, a thing that Sirius would never normally do, because he was Sirius Black, after all.… A person who never turned down the chance for fun and mischief making. Then, for Sirius to show up on Harry's birthday, claiming to hate him, and to not have room in his manor for a boy his age...

And another thought hit Harry... the dream with the Death Eaters dragging in a man with a hood on. Voldemort had questioned the cloaked figure as to why he was disobeying him even with Imperius on him. That very well could have been Sirius. In fact, it was most probable. Then, there was the fact that Sirius had been nice to Harry in the hospital wing, and had told him to not let "it" get him. Which Harry was quite sure now that Sirius had been speaking about the darkness. Since Sirius had been the one brainwashing him and everything.… He had known what he was talking about.

Inwardly, Harry smiled. It just had to be true. Sirius did not hate him. He was not a Death Eater, and hopefully... he still wanted Harry to live with him.

"Harry?" Sirius asked suddenly, making Harry jump. Harry turned slightly and raised his eyes to look at the man beside him. He swallowed and looked back down at the ground.

  "I'm sorry," Harry whispered.

"What are you sorry for? I should be the one grovelling down at your feet, begging forgiveness for the rest of my pathetic life."

  Harry raised his eyes again and made eye contact. "I'm sorry for doubting you."

Sirius stared at Harry for a few moments, his eyes beginning to shine with unshed tears. "You believe me?" he asked in a relieved sob. Harry only hesitated for about a second before he nodded his head.

"I believe you."

Sirius let out a relieved sigh that cracked a little. He reached out tentatively and placed his hand on Harry's shoulder, and squeezed a little. Sirius concentrated his stare on his hand. He swallowed thickly. "I know-" he began but was cut off by Harry hugging him fiercely. Sirius let out a surprised grunt, but returned the hug.

  "It won't be the same," Harry mumbled against Sirius's shoulder. "I know it wasn't you and all, but you're still the one who did it. It won't be the same for a while... if ever."

"I know. I didn't really expect it to be."

"It'll get better though."

"I hope so.... Harry, I'll understand if you don't want to... but would you still want to live with me?"

  Harry let out a relieved laugh and hugged Sirius even tighter. "I was worried you wouldn't want me anymore."

"Can I take that as a yes?"

"Yes, you can. I want to live with you." Even as Harry said this, he could feel the nagging doubt in the back of his mind. What if Sirius wasn't telling the truth? What if Sirius really did hate him? Harry shrugged this feeling off the best he could. For the moment, he wanted to enjoy the feeling of elation that this revelation gave him.

Harry felt Sirius smile widely against the top of his head before Sirius kissed his head. "Thank Merlin!" he exclaimed quietly. "You know that I really do love you, right?"

"Thanks for reassuring me. And you know that I don't really hate you?"

"Thanks for reassuring me."

The two finally pulled out of their hug and smiled at each other. They both began to stare out at the giant squid, propelling itself across the surface of the water, enjoying the warm morning sun. "So, Harry. Tell me all about Draco. Is he still an annoying prat? Is he good to you? Is he good to your friends? Do you love him? Does he love you?"

  Harry blushed and began scrounging for more rocks to throw in the lake. "To answer your questions in order: yes, of course he is. Would that ever change? Yes, he's wonderful. He's getting better, and yes I do, and so does he." With a big pile of rocks in front of him, Harry took a rock and skipped it across the water.

"That's good. Tell me more," Sirius asked as he too skipped a rock across the water. "How did it happen? How long have you been together?"

Harry smiled as he skipped another rock, and began to tell the story of how he and Draco first kissed.


Over the next month, even more things started to fall back in place. Dumbledore reinstated Sirius as the Defence Against the Dark Arts professor, and Harry couldn't be happier about that. Now that Sirius was back to himself, the classes were extremely fun, with odd things happening in the middle of class. One day, a week after Sirius's return, Sirius had been lecturing about what makes a dark curse, dark, when Ron gave a terrified squeal (which people were still giving him a hard time about). The entire class had turned in his direction and either squealed in horror along with him, or laughed.

"Nice look, Medusa," Seamus had said, trying to control his laughter.

"Get them off!" Ron yelled.

  "I'm afraid that hex takes a while to wear off, Mr. Weasley," Sirius had commented calmly. "About two hours to be exact. You'll just have to wait it out. You'll just have to live with a group of snakes coming out of your head."

"At least stun them or something! I don't like them moving!"

"Mr. Potter, if you would."

  Harry shrugged, turned to the snakes and hissed at them to go to sleep. They immediately obeyed his command and curled up on the top of Ron's head. Ron looked at his friend with a beseeching look.

"Help me out here. There has to be a counter-curse," he whispered as Sirius continued lecturing. Harry merely shrugged again.

"At least they aren't spiders."

Ron shuddered and turned his attention back to Sirius, without further complaints. Harry followed his lead just in time to see Sirius wink in his direction as he turned to the board to write something.

  After that particular class, more strange things began to happen. Things around the room would explode at sporadic intervals, and Sirius would pay them no attention. Each time, he would simply wink at Harry and continue teaching. Everybody's attention would always be on the newest explosion to take notice of the gesture, so Harry was still the only one to know who was doing it in his class.

Sirius didn't stop at the sixth year class or explosions. It seemed as though strange things were happening in every class. People's hair would change colours in rapid succession, clothes would be swapped in a second so that a Slytherin would be wearing a Ravenclaw garments, or a Gryffindor would be wearing a Hufflepuffs uniform. The only people that Sirius left out of his pranks were Harry and Draco. They of course, being the only people who knew. Harry had to admit, it was quite funny to see Hermione's skin turn scarlet without her noticing for an entire twenty minutes, when she finally demanded to know what everybody was laughing at. In fact, the only days that Harry noticed that Sirius was actually not playing practical jokes on everybody were on the days of the end of term exams.

The last day of term found Harry and Draco in their shared 'classroom' packing Harry's things. Or to be more specific, Draco was lounging on the couch, watching Harry pack all of things into his trunk. Because as the Slytherin put it, 'Malfoys do not do work meant for house elves.' Personally, Harry thought it was time that his boyfriend put away those thoughts that Lucius had instilled in him, since the man was now imprisoned in Azkaban for life. Though Harry supposed that it was hard to get rid of your values, no matter how inconsequential they were. As the Gryffindor closed the lid to his trunk and locked it, a long, suffering sigh came from behind him, causing him to turn.

"What is it, Draco?"

"Nothing... Well, I hate the fact that I have to stay here, like some common... house elf, or groundskeeper, or Filch.... or teacher."

"Even for you, that wasn't very nice, Draco. Your godfather happens to be a teacher."

"Yes, well, Sev wouldn't be staying here if it weren't for Voldemort. We could go to his home and stay. If it weren't for Voldemort," he continued more bitterly. "My father wouldn't be Azkaban, and my mother wouldn't hate me for it. It doesn't make any sodding sense. Sure, she loves him, but she never seemed adverse to sending him to Azkaban if she had the chance."

...Which she probably did have the chance many times, but she never did, now did she? Harry thought to himself, but he couldn't bring himself to say it. It would only make Draco very irritated. "Well, there isn't really anything you can do but hope she'll come around. Besides, staying at Malfoy Manor wouldn't be very safe for you anyhow."

"Yeah. It's her bloody loss anyway if she wants to lose her husband and her son. I don't know how she'll handle it, being all alone in the Manor. She always went crazy even when Lucius and I was there."

"I'm sure she'll manage. She is a grown woman," Harry said softly, but Draco glared.

"I know she's a grown woman, Potter!" he snapped. "But if she would just-"

  "Draco, stop. I don't want to fight with you right now because I won't be seeing you for who knows how long. Maybe not even until next term, and I don't want to fight. Okay?"

Draco glared as he looked away. "Fine. You had better go then. The carriages will probably be outside soon. Have a nice bloody time at your new home." Harry sighed inwardly. So much for trying to make things right.

  "Okay, then. If you're going to be like that, I'll just leave."

Harry went and collected his trunk and levitated it into the air, making it follow him. Just as he reached for the door handle to leave, Draco grabbed his arm and spun him around. "What do you think you're doing?" he demanded angrily.

"I'm leaving," Harry replied slowly. "Remember? It's the last day of term..."

"I know that you sodding idiot," the blond said quietly, smiling just a little bit. "You were going to leave without saying goodbye."

"Well, I thought you didn't want to - mmph!"

Draco had pushed Harry roughly up against the door and kissed him just as roughly. "You're such a moron sometimes, Harry," Draco breathed as he pulled away for a moment, only to kiss Harry more. Trapped as he was, Harry could do nothing but return the kiss... Not that he wanted to do anything else at the moment. Harry ran his hand up to Draco's cheek, caressing it, feeling the smooth complexion, the little hill that was his cheekbone, his strong jaw line, back to the little pool right behind Draco's earlobe. Harry's hand stopped and he drew small circles in it before moving to the silky threads of Draco's hair. He sighed into their kiss as he entwined his fingers in the hair, mussing it up slightly. The Slytherin pushed Harry further into the wall even as their kiss became gentler. Harry wrapped his arms around Draco's neck and lifted his legs up to wrap them around his boyfriend's waist, pulling him impossibly closer. The Gryffindor gasped as he felt the result of their heated kissing pressing into each other and he moved his hips forward, hoping to make more contact. But Draco gave a very undignified squeak for a Malfoy and stepped away, making Harry nearly drop to the ground. Luckily, he caught himself just in time and stood up, brushing down his robes.

"I'm sorry, Draco," Harry sighed tiredly, trying to keep the frustration from his voice. It wasn't the first time that something like this had happened. Whenever one of their more heated snogging moments got out of control like that, Draco would get surprised, and move away and when Harry would look at him, Draco always looked beyond terrified. Draco always refused to talk about what it was... Or rather, Harry figured he'd refuse so never asked. He rationalised with himself that if Draco wanted to talk to him about it, he'd talk, if there werewas anything to talk about. The whole thing confused him. It seemed that Draco was all talk. He'd laugh and joke about sex, but when it came to the real thing, he'd run away like a puppy with his tail between his legs.

"Y... you better go, Harry. The carriages will be here soon."

"You're right." He leaned forward, trying to place a small kiss on Draco's lips, but he turned his head at the last moment, and Harry got his cheek. He sighed aloud this time. "I'll write."

"I'll write back." Draco offered a smile and pushed him towards the door. "You're going to miss the carriages."

Harry nodded and left the room, Draco trailing behind the Gryffindor's trunk. When they got to the entrance hall, most of the students were milling around, waiting for the carriages to arrive, and Ron and Hermione were straining their necks, looking for their third appendage. "Harry!" Hermione yelled triumphantly once she saw him. He waved and put his trunk by the others before going over to them. Draco disappeared into the crowd without another word. Harry couldn't help but feel a little disappointed.

  "Hey, guys," he greeted. "Been down here long?"

"No, only a few minutes," Ron replied. "Sirius was down here a few minutes ago. He said he had one last teacher's meeting, then he was going to the manor to get things ready and he'll be at King's Cross to pick you up." Ron offered a big grin. "How does it feel to not be going to the Dursley's this year?"

  "Strange, and in a way, a little sad. I mean, I did grow up there and Dudley has been great for the past year, surprisingly."

"You said you've been writing him?" Hermione inquired.

  "Yes." Harry wrinkled his nose. "I wrote to him at the beginning of May but he hasn't written back. Which is odd. He usually doesn't take more than a few weeks to write back. Hedwig hasn't even been back yet." Harry felt a twinge of sadness at this thought. He hadn't really realised this until about a week before. He had been so caught up in everything that had been going on, that he hadn't realised his owl's absence. With a shrug, he offered a small grin. "Well, I'm sure she'll be fine though, right? As well as Dudley."

"Yeah, they'll be fine," Hermione said confidently. "It's not like anything too bad could happen to them."

"You're right. Oh, the carriages are here! Let's go get one." With the carriages in mind, the trio hurried out of the castle, forgetting for the moment all about Dudley and Hedwig. As the carriages trundled down the bumpy path, Harry couldn't help but look back at the intimidating castle. It was another year gone, and the next would be his last. It was a sad thought, but Harry felt he was ready to give up all of these dangerous misadventures that he had had along the way. Perhaps... perhaps Harry would get a quiet life after Hogwarts. But, that was too far off to even think about yet. Seventh year was looming over the horizon and Harry couldn't see anything but more adventures, more danger coming his way. He smiled grimly to himself as the castle disappeared from view. He had met everything head on before, and he would do it again, no matter what it was. After all, he had been given the name the 'Boy Who Lived' for a reason and he would make people believe, but more importantly, he had to make himself believe that he deserved that title. Harry was confident that he would.

Okay, my eyes are all grainy and threatening to close on me, so I'm just going to list everyone's names who reviewed the last chapter. Just know, that I'm not any less thankful. It is just that I'm now working 65 hour weeks at my summer job and can't really find enough brains to.... okay... just lost my train of thought there. No joke. I think my point was that I can't think. And I think I proved that. Luckily, I already had the summary and a small excerpt from the sequel ready for this.

Special thanks to: madkornfan, HironiKoshinha, lollipozz, Meemo, Thistle, redredredred, Sailor Grape, Rain, Tsuyuno, MalfoySlave, caliadragon. I think there might have been more than that, but they aren't all showing up on the review board, so if you're not listed here, I'm really sorry, and I do thank you!

Summary and excerpt from the sequel, Remember You.

The summary sucks right now, so bear with me. Harry's seventh year is just around the corner and his life couldn't be better. But at his birthday party, he receives a mysterious gift that gives him something he has always dreamed of. With the gift, Harry's life seems to become even better, but not everything is as it seems when two mysterious people come into his life. Why exactly is Harry the only one able to see them? And who or what is making students and teachers alike disappear without a trace? These are just two problems Harry will need to deal with as the wizarding world is collapsing under the hands of Voldemort.

Excerpt: (This is a bit long, but oh well. It also doesn't have anything to do with the larger plot because I don't want to give anything away, so this part is about Harry and Draco's relationship).
...as Harry climbed up onto the raft, he stared at his boyfriend with admiring eyes. He just couldn't get over how great and beautiful Draco was. The blond stood straight on the raft, looking down at Ron and Hermione bickering, with a slight smile on his face. His face was adorned with newly formed freckles that had sprouted in the extensive time they had spent in the sun, as well as a slight burn from the midday sun they were under. Harry chuckled softly. No matter how many times Draco burnt, he would just burn the next day all over again. It annoyed the Slytherin to no end how Harry and Hermione could tan so easily, but he was stuck with burning. But as Ron had pointed out, it was better than freckling so much that it looked like he had a constant tan. Draco had frowned and pointed out his new freckles, saying that he was well on his way.

Now, Harry laid a gentle hand on his boyfriend's elbow causing him to jump slightly. "You're starting to like them," Harry whispered happily.

"What are you on about?"

"Ron and Hermione. I saw you just now, smiling at them."

"Well, it's hard not to think their petty fights aren't amusing. It doesn't mean I'm beginning to like them," he drawled.

"You'll never admit it, will you?" Harry sighed. "I wish you would."

"There is nothing to admit, Potter," Draco said clearly irritated and dove gracefully into the water. Harry stared sadly at Draco's form swimming underwater, looking as though he was trying to get as far as possible from Harry. If one thing was for sure, Draco had kept to his promise of keeping Ron and Hermione around at all times. The two boys had not had one moment of alone time for the past three and a half weeks, or rather twenty-four days and five hours, and since Harry didn't have a watch with him, he couldn't really be sure of the exact minutes and seconds since they had been alone. It frustrated, angered, and saddened Harry every time it was apparent just how far Draco would go to keep away. The blond had recently reverted back to calling him Potter every time the Slytherin referred to him. Out of everything, this act hurt the most. In fact, Harry was now so unsure of himself, that he rarely even approached Draco anymore. He honestly didn't know how he was supposed to when he was snarled at or ignored every time he did attempt a conversation.

Harry continued to watch as Draco emerged from the water behind Ron and he grabbed the red head's side, effectively startling him out of his mock fight with Hermione. The three started a large water fight as the lone boy on the raft watched on sadly. He felt his heart constricting painfully inside of his chest. Why wouldn't Draco let Harry near him anymore? What had he done? "Hey," a low voice whispered into his ear, making him jump back. Harry turned around and found Charlie hovering on a broom above him with a sexy grin planted on his face. "Why are you just watching them? Jump in and have some fun," he suggested.

Harry turned back to where Charlie gestured and watched his friends. "No. I think I'm done now," he replied even as he shivered in the afternoon sun

"Well, then it's a good thing I have a broom. I saw your towels on shore. I can give you a lift there and we'll grab yours and go back to the manor." ..........

"Hey guys!" Harry yelled to his friends in the water but he received no response. "Hey! I'm going in with Charlie!" The three continued having a fierce water fight, oblivious to Harry's words. He shrugged, slightly hurt that nobody even bothered to notice where he was, but climbed onto the broom and was soon in the air. He noticed that the speed wasn't quite as fast with the extra weight, but he found that he didn't mind clinging to Charlie. His presence was oddly soothing and warming to Harry's chilled body. He never turned back so he never saw Draco climbing onto the raft, glaring after them.

Okay, so this is the end of Let the Darkness Take You. I appreciate and thank all of you for reading and enjoying my story, and I invite you all to read the sequel, Remember You ^.^ I'm sort of sad to see this story end, but we must give the sequel the spotlight now. Remember You will not be posted for a couple weeks, however. I have two betas for it, and my 2nd beta only just send me chapters 1 and 2 tonight, and I like to be ahead for beta'd chapters. I am making no promises on when it will be posted, but I believe the latest will be in about two months. I have 10 chapters written, so let's all cross our fingers for speedy betas! ^.^ Thank you all again! I'm glad you enjoyed my story enough to read to the end!