Hi! I don't know, I like this one. So I hope you do too! Let me know!
WARNINGS: A little bit of swearing, and some suggestive sexual stuff, nothing too major I don't think.
DISCLAIMER: I do not own Harry Potter whatsoever. It all belongs to J.K. Rowling.
The two became silent following the polite greeting, as they always did. The lift shook slightly as it moved upwards, heading farther into the Ministry. Draco was hyper-aware of Potter's presence, as it seemed he was whenever they were alone together on the way to their respective departments, which was every morning. It was strange that they always managed to get a lift together, alone. After a few months of this, though, Draco had come to expect it.
Draco focused on ignoring Potter thoroughly all the way up to level three, which held the Department of Magical Accidents and Catastrophes. After leaving Hogwarts, Draco had gotten a next-to-nothing office job in that department. It was the best he could get, what with his… history. Potter obviously got off at the next stop. Level two, the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, where the Auror headquarters were located.
For the first three years straight out of school, Draco hadn't seen Potter once. He had been off training to be an Auror before officially working in the Ministry, Draco knew. He remembered vividly the first day Potter appeared for work at the office. Their interaction that day had been much like the one they now had regularly, with one minor difference.
Draco was running late. He sprinted from the fireplace he'd just arrived in over to the lifts, shoving his arm into the closing doors of one of them, stopping it from shutting. He pried it open again and squeezed inside.
He looked around to see who had greeted him. There was only one other person in the lift, and he swore his heart stopped when he saw who it was.
To his surprise, Potter sent a small smile his way. They stayed silent all the way to level three. As the disembodied voice announced where they were and the lift doors began to open, Potter said something unexpected.
"I like your hair like that."
Draco's hand subconsciously jumped to his blond locks, which were hanging loosely around his ears. He never wore his hair down like this, he normally put gel in it to hold it neatly in place. He had simply been running too late that morning to do it properly.
"What?" Draco asked, his voice quivering.
"I said I like your hair now." Potter shrugged. "It looks more… natural. It's nice."
Draco felt inexplicably thrilled by the complement. He vaguely realized he only had half a second to get off the lift before the doors closed again. Still, he gazed at Potter and replied before stepping out.
Ever since that day, Draco knew he was in love with Harry Potter. But Potter need never know that. Or that Draco had stopped putting gel in his hair for good after that comment.
Neither of them said another word the whole way up to level three. Draco disregarded Potter as he stepped off the lift. Although that didn't stop him from inhaling silently through his nose as he walked past Potter, catching a whiff of his intoxicating scent.
Draco sensed something off about Potter one Thursday morning as they stepped into the lift together. He had a shit eating grin on his face (that was beautiful) and his eyes appeared brighter than usual.
"Hello, Malfoy." He even sounded overly cheerful.
"Potter," Draco replied, as always.
He anticipated silence to follow as he studied Potter out of the corner of his eye. He appeared antsy, as if he'd consumed an unhealthy amount of coffee that morning. Draco swore his emerald eyes kept flashing over to him, that wide smile never leaving his face. Draco couldn't even begin to fathom what was going on in the hero's head as they were one level away from Draco's exit.
At first, Draco was confused. Hadn't they already exhausted their daily greeting? But then he realized it had sounded like a question.
"Yes, Potter?" he responded warily.
"Have dinner with me tomorrow night."
Draco knew it was a request, but it had come across like a demand. His body went rigid as the lift continued to move upwards, closing in on his level.
Potter rolled his eyes. "You heard me."
The announcement was made that they had arrived at level three and the lift doors began to open. Potter had to be joking, right? Draco couldn't seriously believe that he was genuinely interested in having dinner with him.
"I think not, Potter."
With that, he exited the lift, almost at a run. He kept up his fast pace until he arrived at his desk. He plopped himself into his chair and took a deep breath, trying to calm down.
Had Potter somehow discovered that Draco had feelings for him? Was this him mocking Draco? That had to be it. In no way had Potter asked him out on what sounded like a date because he wanted to, well, date him. That was impossible.
Potter didn't bring the subject up again over the next few days. They continued like they had for months, saying three words between them the entire lift ride. Then, on the following Wednesday, he tried again.
"Potter," Draco said. He sensed that excited aura around Potter again. He hoped he was imagining it.
"I've got two tickets to the Cannons-Falcons game this Saturday. Come with me."
Before he could immediately turn the invitation down, Draco found himself saying, "The Cannons are dreadful. It would be boring. The Falcons will whoop their arse easily."
Potter directed that dazzling grin at him again. "Is that your only objection to going?"
"No," Draco grumbled. "I'm not an idiot, Potter. Don't think I don't know you're only doing this for a laugh."
"Who says that's why I'm doing this? I just want to spend some time with you."
Draco tried to hide his face, as he knew he must be blushing. Potter sounded sincere. He was probably just a good actor.
The lift doors opened and Draco made to step out. A hand gently wrapped around his wrist, stopping him in his tracks. His head spun around and he locked eyes with Potter. Merlin, were they the brightest green he had ever seen.
"Please," Potter said, pouting.
"Goodbye, Potter," was his only reply as he tore himself out of Potter's loose grip and walked away.
Two weeks later, after returning to their typical interaction, Potter didn't even greet Draco upon entering the lift. He dived right into a discussion.
"I'm leaving for a mission this afternoon."
Draco wanted to scoff, but he refrained. "Well, that's part of your job duties I suppose."
"I'll be back by Saturday night. I'd love to see you afterwards… say Sunday?"
Draco practically growled, "Please, stop doing this, Potter."
For the first time, Potter frowned. "I wasn't aware I was doing anything bad. I'm just asking for your company. This mission could be rough. It'd be nice to have something to look forward to when I come back, something good."
This time, Draco did scoff. "Oh, and that's seeing me, is it?"
"Yes," he replied simply.
"You're full of shit."
"Am not." Now, Potter sounded frustrated. "I really do want to see you outside of this lift, you know. Really talk to you, more than the few words we always say to each other."
"I don't believe you."
Potter perked up at that. Draco mentally cursed himself for unintentionally admitting his only real hesitation was because he questioned Potter's motives.
"So, you're not opposed to the idea, you just think I'm insincere?" he asked hopefully, like that was something he could work with.
"I don't know," Draco muttered.
The lift doors opened to level three and Draco turned his back on Potter to walk away. He had only taken a few steps down the hallway when he heard Potter shout after him.
"Don't worry, I'll figure out a way to show you I mean this."
Draco felt a chill shoot down his spine at that promise. He whipped his head around to look back at Potter, but the lift doors had already closed again.
Potter was sticking to this joke for much longer than Draco thought he would. One might think he truly did mean it. Regardless, Draco couldn't let himself think that Potter legitimately wanted to see him outside of the Ministry. In reality, Potter was probably just doing this to be an arse.
Draco tried his hardest to suppress a sigh of relief. "Potter."
Whenever Draco didn't see Potter for a few days because he knew the other man was on an Auror mission, he worried. He knew these missions could be extremely dangerous, and Potter had always been gutsy to the point that he was reckless. Draco couldn't help but be concerned for his safety. He wouldn't feel better until Potter returned and they rode the lift together again. That Monday morning was no different. But that didn't mean he wanted Potter to keep pretending he was interested in taking him out. No, he wasn't buying it.
"I think I've figured it out."
Draco's eyes involuntarily darted over to Potter. His face was beaming once again and his striking emerald eyes seemed incapable of looking at anything but Draco.
"Figured what out?" Although, he was positive he knew what the Chosen One was referring to.
"How to prove to you that I really do want to go out with you."
Draco's assumption was spot on. Of course Potter would continue with this nonsense, he never was one to back down. Draco was sure if he caved in and fell for Potter's tricks, the man would laugh his arse off at him and declare it all a joke. He wasn't going to let that happen. He turned to face Potter to tell him off.
"Potter, there's nothing for you to prove," Draco said, his irritation evident in his voice. "You need to stop— mmpff!"
With two strides, Potter closed the small distance between them in the lift and pressed his lips to Draco's. It was sloppy, since Draco had been in the middle of a sentence when Potter kissed him. But it had effectively shut him up.
Potters lips were soft, his body so close that Draco could feel warmth radiating from him, and he smelled bloody fantastic. It could have been amazing if, but Draco didn't move a muscle. Potter sure was taking this joke far if he was actually kissing him. He remained frozen, his lips and body stiff as Potter tried to get a reaction out of him. Eventually, Potter pulled away with an exasperated groan.
"Come on, Draco. What else do I have to do to show you I'm serious?"
Draco knew his eyes had gone comically wide upon hearing Potter call him by his first name. Apparently, that was all it took. Draco let out a small whine in defeat before leaning in, capturing Potter's lips in another kiss.
It was a proper kiss this time. Their lips moved together smoothly as Draco's hands buried themselves in Potter's mop of jet black hair. Potter's placed his hands on the small of Draco's back, tugging him in and holding him close. Draco wasn't quite sure how long they were snogging for, in a bloody lift at the Ministry of Magic no less, but he didn't really care. All he cared about was Potter's tongue, which at some point had forced its way into his mouth and was doing all sorts of brilliant things.
Potter pulled back, reluctantly it seemed. He rested his forehead against Draco's and smiled, clearly pleased with himself. For one more second, Draco wondered if this would be the moment Potter confessed to messing with his head.
But then Potter said, "Go out with me tonight."
And Draco heard himself whisper back, "Okay."
"Good," Potter replied, "I'll come find you at the end of the day." He extracted himself from Draco's grip, just as the lift doors were opening. "Well, this is my stop."
Draco arched an eyebrow in amusement. He always got off the lift before Potter, since his level was first. He doubted their snogging had disoriented Potter so much that he forgot where his own department was. But then he heard the female voice announce their location.
"Level two, Department of Magical Law Enforcement, including the Improper Use of Magic Office, Auror Headquarters, and Wizengamot Administration Services."
Potter winked at Draco before he stepped out of the lift. "I'll see you later then." The doors closed once he made his exit, leaving Draco alone to wonder how he'd passed his own level without noticing.
As five o'clock drew closer and closer, Draco's mind filled with doubt. He could barely focus on his work. All he could think about was Potter.
Sure, they had snogged. And it had been wonderful. For Draco at least. But he knew it hadn't meant a thing to Potter. Draco couldn't figure out how he'd let himself become so far gone that he'd fallen into Potter's trap. He knew exactly what was going to happen now. He was going to be stood up by Potter.
He couldn't face the humiliation of accepting Potter's request for a date, only to be left waiting around for the man who would never show up. Because he knew for a fact that, despite his promise to find him at the end of the day, Potter would not come. No, there was no way Draco was going to be a fool and wait around for Potter, or go looking for him either. Draco decided it would be most prudent to leave at the end of the day like nothing was wrong.
By four fifty-eight, Draco was a wreck. He was fidgeting in his seat, waiting for the second the clock struck five so he could dart out of the Ministry as fast as physically possible. He glanced at his watch once more. Four fifty-nine.
Draco didn't dare look up at the person who had stepped in front of his desk, but he knew that voice.
"You got here awfully fast." he said while pretending to be concentrating on an important document. "Shouldn't you still be working?"
"One of the unnecessary perks of being Harry Potter, I can get away with almost anything."
Draco was surprised to hear a bitter tone to Potter's voice, as if he didn't like all the special treatment he received. That made Draco tilt his head up slightly to look at him. Potter had a grimace on his face, but not for long. His expression relaxed into a smile the second he saw that Draco's eyes were on him.
"Although, I don't mind it much now, since it got me here in time. I had a feeling if I was even a minute late you might try to run out on me."
"Yes… well…" Draco couldn't deny it. He didn't know what to say.
Potter was now frowning. "I wish you'd believe me. It would make this a whole lot easier."
"Did you really expect me to be easy, Potter?" As soon as he asked that question, he regretted it. It could almost be misconstrued as something... inappropriate.
"Merlin, no." Potter chuckled deeply. Draco thought it was the sexiest sound he'd ever heard. "But I think I actually like that," Potter added. "You wouldn't be you if you were easy." He finished with a wink.
"Shut it." It didn't sound as harsh as Draco hoped it would and he knew his face must be bright red. He cleared his throat before saying, "Whatever, let's just go."
"Glad to hear you're still on board. I promise you, by the end of tonight, there won't be a doubt in your mind about my feelings for you."
Draco blinked hard a few times. Potter had just explicitly said he had feelings for Draco. How could he though? Sure, it was now pretty damn clear that Potter really did want to take him out, but most likely for superficial reasons. Having Potter plainly suggest that he had concrete feelings for him was something else entirely. Draco shook his head in disbelief, still doubting Potter's true intentions, but stood up to leave with him anyway.
"I'd say go home and change first, since I'm taking you into muggle London for dinner, but I worry that will give you time to talk yourself out of this." Potter let out a long sigh, not pleased by how true that statement was.
"Why muggle London?"
Potter huffed in apparent annoyance, but not at Draco's inquiry. "I'd rather our first date not be ruined by reporters and cameramen following us around the whole time."
Draco didn't miss his use of the word first, as if he was already planning on more than one date. As much as he wanted to comment on that, Draco asked instead, "You're still hounded by the media? After all these years?"
Potter's hand messed up his already disheveled hair even more. He was obviously peeved by that fact. "It's ridiculous, I know."
Draco felt himself smirking. "Well, you are our Savior, after all."
"Not you too," Potter groaned.
Smirk still firmly in place, Draco shrugged and said, "I'm just saying."
"Yeah, yeah, whatever," Potter said, rolling his eyes. While the subject obviously did irk him, he seemed to be enjoying the casual, friendly banter between himself and Draco.
As they walked towards the lifts, Draco realized something. "Potter, I can't go into muggle London dressed in my robes. And you've still got your Auror robes on."
"Hmm… good point." Potter seemed to contemplate what to do for a moment before a sly smile appeared on his face. "Why don't we go to my place to change? You can borrow something of mine."
"No," was Draco's immediate, sharp reply. He couldn't just go straight to Potter's flat and borrow his clothes. The idea was ludicrous.
They entered one of the lifts that would take them down to the Atrium. The second the doors were closed, Potter moved closer to Draco, making it so he had him backed up against the wall. He leaned in to whisper in Draco's ear.
"That's the most efficient way to do it, Draco." His name was practically purred by Potter. He tried to suppress a shiver as Potter continued. "I promise, we'll be in and out. Change then go to dinner."
Maybe it was because Potter was so damn close and smelled so damn good, or maybe it was because of the gentle kiss Potter pressed to his skin just below his ear. Whatever the reason, Draco found himself agreeing to the insane plan.
"O-Okay. If we're quick."
"Yes, of course."
They arrived at the Atrium. Potter let Draco floo to his flat first (probably to make sure Draco actually did go to his flat, instead of ditching him at the last second). When he landed in Potter's fireplace he swiftly moved out of the way, since Potter would be coming through at any moment.
He swallowed hard upon looking around. It suddenly hit him that he was in Harry Potter's flat, his personal, private space. It didn't feel appropriate to be there, considering they hadn't even gone out yet. What the hell had he been thinking by agreeing to this?
The flames in the fireplace turned green as Potter spun into view. He stumbled out, losing his footing and nearly falling on his arse. Once he steadied himself, he raised a hand to rub the back of his neck in embarrassment. His discomfort made Draco smirk.
"I never did get the hang of that…" Potter mumbled. He recovered quickly though. He grinned and was back to his normal, confident self. "Let's get going, shall we?"
Draco nodded curtly, still not at ease. Potter began walking towards another room, and beckoned Draco to follow when he didn't move. Draco was hesitant, but he went. Potter led them through a door and Draco instantly felt nauseous when he found himself in a bedroom. Potter's bedroom.
As Potter began rummaging through his closet for something they could both change into, Draco stood awkwardly near the door. He couldn't contain himself any longer. He had to question Potter about what was going on.
"Why the sudden desire to go out with me?" he blurted out.
Potter ceased his search for clothes at the inquiry. He turned slowly around to face Draco, a crooked smile gracing his face.
"So, the interrogation starts now, huh?"
Draco gulped. "Yes."
Potter's smile grew a little wider. "It's not sudden at all. I've wanted this for a while."
"You first asked me out about three weeks ago. That's not such a long time," Draco pointed out.
"I've wanted to take you out for much longer than three weeks. I just never asked you until then."
"So, how long have you wanted to?"
"Since the first day I saw you a little more than five months ago," Potter replied.
It sounded to Draco like he was being completely truthful. He even remembered how long it had been since their first meeting. Draco also knew that the first time they rode the lift together was just over five months ago. There was so much more he needed to know, but he wasn't sure where to go from there, so he stayed silent. His pause gave Potter the opportunity to speak again.
"Haven't you ever wondered how we always manage to get a lift together, by ourselves, during the hustle and bustle of all the Ministry employees heading to work? It's odd, don't you think?"
Draco wouldn't admit it, but he had never once wondered about that. He liked their routine, so he never bothered to question it. He'd grown so accustomed to it that it didn't faze him. Now that Potter brought it up, though, he knew it shouldn't be possible. Potter was right, mornings at the Ministry were always hectic. Witches and wizards would scurry around, trying to get to their offices as soon as possible. Lifts were often filled to capacity. Hell, before the first time he saw Potter, he had always been crammed in with about twenty people each time he rode the lift. Now that he was thinking about it, their situation was odd.
"I guess it seems… unusual that we always get our own lift." Draco wasn't sure what point Potter was trying to make by bringing this up, but he sensed Potter did have a very important point. He was anxious to hear whatever it was Potter had to say.
"The first time it happened was a coincidence. But as soon as you left, I knew I wanted to see you again. So, after that, I took rather extreme measures to make sure I always got a lift with you, and only you."
"What measures? How could you possibly make sure that would always happen?" Draco asked in confusion.
Potter smiled sheepishly. "I'll admit, I used my Savior status to make it happen, as much as I normally despise getting anything because of my name. But for you, I did."
Still, Draco was lost. "How did your Savior status guarantee us a private lift?"
For a minute, Draco thought Potter wasn't going to tell him. He kept his mouth shut, jaw clenched, as his cheeks turned faintly pink. Just when Draco was out to yell at him to spit it out, he replied.
"What I did was humiliating, really." His hand moved up to rake through his unruly hair before he fully answered Draco's question. "I started arriving at work early to inform whoever I could not to get in the lift with me. I told them I was waiting for you. I also told them to spread the word, but never mention any of this to you. It worked because, of course, my wish was their command and no one dared question me. It's now common knowledge throughout the Ministry that Harry Potter always gets a lift alone with Draco Malfoy. Everyone knows not to disturb us."
Draco couldn't believe what he was hearing. Of course, it made sense. How else would they get a lift to themselves daily? The entire Ministry of Magic had obeyed Harry Potter's orders. Which must mean the entire Ministry of Magic knew what Harry Potter wanted, who Harry Potter wanted. But why? He had made it so glaringly obvious to everyone that he was interested in Draco Malfoy, a former Death Eater, of all people. Did he really do all that to get to see Draco for a minute each day? To get to repeat the same brief, almost insignificant, greeting to him for months? It sounded insane. Although, as he watched Potter confess all this, he somehow could tell he was being honest.
As honest as he knew Potter was being, he couldn't help saying incredulously, "You're not serious."
"I assure you, as pathetic as it is, I am very serious," Potter replied.
Draco's next question came spilling out of his mouth, beyond his control. "But why me? You're Harry bloody Potter! You can have anyone you want!"
Potter sighed, almost sadly. "Apparently not. Like I said, I've wanted you for some time now. It took me months to work up the nerve to ask you out. And you've been proving to be very difficult to get."
Draco ignored all that. "You didn't answer my question. Why me?"
Potter stepped away from his closet to sit down on his bed. He patted his mattress on the spot directly next to him. Despite his better judgement, Draco took the hint and made his way over to sit down next to Potter.
"I've always been drawn to you, Draco," he started in explanation. "Even at Hogwarts. Sure, in those days it was in a negative sense, but it's true. There's always been something about you."
"Okay," Draco replied. "But—"
"I'm not finished," Potter interrupted. "I was relieved when I saw you at work that first day, doing well for yourself after all you went through. I realized I just wanted you to be okay."
He interrupted again. "Then there was the fact that you're absolutely fucking gorgeous. I knew from the moment I saw you that I was attracted to you."
"Potter, let me get a word in," Draco demanded.
"Not yet." Potter sighed. "I had to say something to you that day, more than just hello. So, I went with a compliment." His eyes glazed over. He seemed lost in his memories as he said, "Then you smiled."
Draco felt his eyebrow arch at that. "I smiled?"
"You did," Potter confirmed. "You really, truly smiled at me. It made you look even more stunning than you already are. Hell, I felt like you had literally taken out your wand and stunned me at that moment." He snorted and Draco couldn't tell if it was in amusement or embarrassment. "I could tell you were wound up and stressed that morning, but all that seemed to disappear when I complimented you. Never before had I seen you look so relaxed, so happy. And it was because of me. I decided I needed to make you smile again."
Since Draco couldn't even remember smiling to begin with, he asked, "So, has it ever happened besides that day?"
"No." Potter looked sulky as his head dropped. "I haven't given myself many opportunities to make it happen again. After the first time, I may have made sure I got to see you regularly, but I struggled with what to say next. I eventually found the courage to ask you out, and I tried to stay positive even when you kept turning me down. Then, we snogged today, and it was brilliant. I was so sure I'd succeeded. But still, it didn't happen."
Draco knew he had strong feelings for the man sitting next to him, and they were growing even more so with every word out of his mouth. After hearing these confessions, Draco wanted nothing more than to wipe away the dejected look Potter now had on his face. There were probably about a million things Potter could do to make him smile again. Although, for that to happen, he would have to let Potter in. Could he do that? Could he let his guard down and finally believe that Potter had feelings for him too?
"But I'm not going to stop trying to make it happen," Potter declared after they had been quite for some time. He lifted his head back up and sure enough, his deep, emerald eyes were filled with intense determination.
Draco came to a decision. The way Potter looked at him, in combination with everything he'd just told him, helped him straighten out the mess in his head.
"I'm sure we can make that happen for you…" He trailed off, unsure if what he said made sense or was reassuring at all. He internally prayed that Potter knew what he meant by that.
Draco silently thanked Merlin when Potter said hopefully, "Yeah?"
"Yeah," Draco replied. He cautiously leaned towards Potter. When Potter caught on to what he was trying to do, he placed his hand at Draco's nape and pulled him in more hurriedly to press their lips together.
Draco sighed contently into the sweet, simple kiss. But soon it wasn't enough. He needed more. He took the initiative to turn the chaste kiss into something deeper and more desperate. He snogged Potter ardently, trying his best to make up for the past three weeks of rejecting him out of nothing more than fear and doubt. Draco needed Potter to know how badly he wanted him. He thought Potter might have understood, if the way he zealously snogged him back was any indication.
It was so good. Draco couldn't help himself. He kicked off his shoes and tore off his work robe. It was clear Potter didn't mind this as he hastily did the same to his own shoes and robe. Once they were both comfortable, Draco grabbed onto Potter's shoulders and began leaning back until his head landed on a pillow.
Potter managed to keep their lips connected as he crawled on top of Draco, making himself comfortable straddling his hips. Draco nearly whined in disappointment when Potter pulled away from his lips, but it turned into a low moan as he began kissing his neck.
Between gentle nips to Draco's skin, Potter said, "I did promise you dinner, you know."
"Doesn't matter," Draco replied breathlessly as his hands started unbuttoning Potter's shirt. "Not hungry."
"Good answer," Potter said. He placed one last hot, open-mouthed kiss to Draco's neck before returning to his lips.
In almost no time, they were both rid of their shirts. Potter sat up on Draco's thighs and his hands found their way to Draco's belt buckle. His movements were rushed as he tried to get it open, but he wasn't having much success. He would whisper a swear word with each failed attempt to get it undone. Draco propped himself up on his elbows to watch him. He saw shaky hands fumbling around his belt and could only think that Potter was utterly adorable.
"Relax," Draco murmured.
"Can't, I want you so bad," Potter groaned.
Draco laughed as he said, "Well, that's always nice to hear."
The second he heard Draco laugh, Potter's eyes flashed up to look at him. He gaped for a moment, before beaming widely. Abandoning his belt, Potter brought his hands up to cradle Draco's face.
"Ah, there it is," he said.
"What?" Draco asked.
Draco hadn't realized he was smiling until Potter pointed it out, but he was now very aware of it. He felt his smile grow at how pleased Potter was. Potter kissed him, having completely forgotten about his original task of getting Draco's belt undone. Draco loved the tender snogging, but he eventually needed to continue where they'd left off.
"Finish what you started, will you?" He tried to sound demanding, but he knew he still had a silly grin on his face.
"Oh, of course. My apologies."
They continued, and Draco knew he smiled a hundred more times that night. He made sure Potter saw each and every one of them.
Short and sweet, or so I think. Pretty please let me know what you think!