The Weasley household awoke early and full of energy the next morning. Bill and Charlie were back home, bunking up in the old bedroom they had once shared. The two brothers descended the stairs loudly, yet they still didn't wake the two sleeping boys as they passed Ron's room.
Soon, the entire Weasley family, and a member of the Order, were seated and ready for breakfast with only three empty spots, only two of which would be filled. Despite Percy's acceptance that Voldemort had returned, he had not come back home. Mrs. Weasley had gained a new attitude about the subject, often saying it was for the best that he had left. Mr. Weasley remained stubbornly silent on the subject.
"Charlie, dear, mind the bacon. I'm going to go wake up Ron and Harry. They'll miss breakfast at this rate!" Mrs. Weasley twittered, moving towards the stairs with all the appearances of a ruffled mother hen. Minerva, who had popped in to see Charlie and Bill, two of her favorite old students, had been persuaded to stay for breakfast. She was reminiscing with Bill when suddenly a door slammed upstairs. A hush fell over the table.
"Think everything's alright?" Ginny asked worriedly, her eyes turned to the stairs.
"I'm sure everything's fine." Charlie replied smoothly as he asked who wanted bacon. Conversation resumed normally, but Mrs. Weasley and the boys didn't return to the table. No one commented on it until Mr. Weasley told the others to stay downstairs in case Molly had worked herself up into a temper. No doubt the boys had done something that had gotten them into trouble.
"Wonder what they thought up?" Fred asked idly. Ginny shot him a look.
"Well, do you have your ears or not?" Minerva, Bill, and Charlie looked confused, but the twins broke out into identical grins.
"I fear we've influenced you horribly, Ginny." George said as he pulled a rubber ear out of his pocket.
"And it's absolutely brilliant." Fred finished, levitating the ear up to the ceiling. The other ear on the table suddenly buzzed with sound.
Muffled crying. Mr. Weasley's voice demanding to know what was going on.
"Merlin, wasn't Percy bad enough? But you had to put me through this, too, didn't you Ron? Oh God I can't believe what you did in my house!" Molly's sobbing became heavier, and it was obvious Ron was talking at the same time Mr. Weasley was.
"What do you mean Percy put you through this? He didn't just leave because of the ministry, did he?!" Ron furiously questioned.
"I'm beyond ashamed with you, with both of you." Mr. Weasley's voice practically hissed in a tone that no one downstairs had ever heard him use. Minerva wanted to confiscate the ears, but she couldn't make herself say the words. She, too, wanted to know what was going on.
"And YOU – thinking you can come in my house and behave this way after what my family has done for you! I assure you, Mr. Potter, that this will be your LAST visit to my home! We thought of you like a son and now I regret that. Merlin you don't understand how much I regret that!" Mr. Weasley continued. It was obvious he was hurt and angry. Mrs. Weasley was no better, alternating between sobbing, throwing things, and ordering Ron not to come back home until he was done with his stupid little stunt to get attention.
"I didn't want to believe what the papers said about you – how you were only out to get attention. But this is all this must be. I've never known two boys that would be so ungrateful! Do you have any idea what this will do to the rest of your family, Ronald? Did you even think of that? What kind of example you're setting for your sister! Rutting like animals - not even legal - are you and Percy trying to rip our family apart?!" She raged, followed by a crash as she probably had thrown something large.
At her last statement, Charlie had dropped his glass in surprise, spilling orange juice all over the table. Fred and George's faces were contorted into expressions of revulsion and surprise. Ginny had tears running down her cheeks and Minerva was shocked to her core.
Loud shouting was erupting out of the ear.
"You bitch! He's bleeding! Get out! Get out NOW!" Ron roared obviously throwing a few things of his own. The door slammed again and everything was quiet.
Ron, wrapped clumsily in a sheet, was hunched over Harry. The small boy had sunk against the foot of the bed; his hand pressed to the gash on his temple that had come from a flying pair of scissors. In a fit of rage, Mrs. Weasley had begun throwing the things on Ron's desk, and the pair of scissors had caught him unexpected.
"That fucking bitch! I can't believe… fucking Merlin!" Ron was cussing in a low, steady stream, dabbing at Harry's cut with a bit more force than was necessary. The sheet he was using was beginning to darken with the blood. Harry watched it fascinated, still shocked and raw. Finally, he caught Ron's wrist and captured his gaze. Wordlessly, Ron dropped the cloth and pulled Harry towards him in a fierce embrace. "Don't worry, love, we'll go to Percy's place. We'll just … we'll just pack our things and go, okay? Come on, Harry, snap out of it." Ron said, some of his old brusqueness returning. Harry felt a little of his old self return as well.
"Right. I know we'll be okay. I trust you." He said quickly before he untangled himself from Ron and made his was to his trunk. Suddenly, lanky arms tightened around him squeezed him happily.
"Before I forget, you were wonderful, beautiful, amazing, perfect. And I meant every word I said last night." With that, the red head went to his own trunk and opened it quickly. Despite everything, Harry smiled at his lover. Ron was all he had left, but Ron would be more than enough.
Oddly, he thought of that single second the night before when Ron had come inside him. Perhaps that was what Ron had felt the entire time? He felt a blush come to his cheeks as he remembered how he had moaned.
They had put their clothes on without cleaning up, packing their essentials into their school book bags and left through the window on their brooms. They had done this in a matter of minuets, so when Minerva went upstairs, the most composed one at the moment, to make sure the boys didn't do anything rash, she found them already gone and the bedroom an upturned mess.
Immediately, she rushed to the fireplace to alert the Headmaster that the two boys were flying unprotected out of the reach of the wards.
She really had no need to worry. The boys had stopped at the Weasley's neighbor a few miles away. The elderly couple graciously welcomed Ron in their home – obviously having babysat him a few times when he was younger. Ron didn't stop to offer explanations, only said that it was urgent they use their floo network. They allowed them, of course, and called goodbye as both boys flooed to "Percy Weasley's Residence!"
Percy and Oliver had just sat down to breakfast when the two disheveled, dirty boys came crashing through the fireplace of their flat in Diagon Alley.
"Ron? Harry? What on earth are you doing here?" Percy questioned immediately, rushing to his little brother and his companion.
"Harry, you're bleeding! What happened?! Was it Death Eaters?!" Oliver interrogated in his unique accent as he pointed his wand to Harry's temple. Meanwhile, Percy used a spell to clean off the ash that practically coated the both of them. Harry didn't answer their questions, only sunk onto the couch and hid his face in a pillow. Percy and Oliver shot Ron questioning stares. In answer, Ron dropped down beside Harry, and took his hand in his own. Realization dawned slowly on Oliver, but Percy immediately got the message.
"Merlin, what did Molly say to you two?" Percy asked quietly, wrapping a comforting arm around his baby brother's shoulders.
"I called mum a bitch. I … I never thought I'd say that. But she threw scissors at Harry, and it made me furious. I … We left then on our brooms, and flooed here from the Jamison's house. They don't know where we are, but I have a feeling they'll guess pretty soon. Mum," Ron paused, a cloud of anger obscuring his face, "Molly let it slip that you didn't just leave because of loyalty to the ministry. I should have known it wasn't as simple as that. You … you'll let us stay here, won't you?" Ron asked worriedly.
"Of course we will, Ron. You and Harry are always welcome here." Oliver answered. Harry raised his face from the pillow and put it back beside him. He sighed heavily, his sweaty hand still resting in Ron's.
"Thank you. I have nowhere else to go. I won't go back to my relative's house. I'll never go back there." Something about the way he said it made the others look at him with something unreadable on their faces. Ron was the first one to snap out of it.
"Don't worry, Harry. I won't let you go back. Merlin, you look awful." Ron said quietly, noticing the bags under Harry's eyes and the paleness in his skin. Harry snorted, and shot Ron a dry look.
"Thanks for that. It's just what I needed." He deadpanned, smiling slightly so that Ron knew he was just joking.
"Ron's right, Harry. You need a hot bath, a soft bed, chicken soup, and the latest Quidditch Quarterly. That should perk you righ' up." Oliver announced in a pep talk tone, pulling Harry up off the couch and leading him into one of the two bedrooms in the apartment. Percy smiled after them and then gave Ron's shoulders another gentle squeeze.
"How about I get you some breakfast before we talk?" He suggested only getting a grateful nod in response.
An hour later, Harry was gently sleeping in the guest bed, a flask of dreamless sleeping drought on the bedside table and filled to the brim with Percy's hot chicken soup. Oliver, Percy, and Ron were sitting around the table sipping strong cups of coffee.
"It's simple really. Harry and I have always been close because of what we've been through together. When he had nightmares, I was the one that wiped his brow and sat with him until he fell asleep again. We've risked our lives for each other countless times, and I'm the only one who he'll tell what he's feeling. I had a crush on him at first, starting probably at the end of our fourth year. I wasn't sure I was gay then, so I was in denial most of the time. But I was having crushes on other boys, the biggest one on Viktor Krum. Hermione's fling with Krum infuriated me. Everyone thought it was because I liked her, but it was really just jealousy. But I got over that and came to accept that I was gay. Then I started realizing the way I acted around Harry without even knowing it. I was always trying to get closer to him, touching him at every opportunity. I was so worried that he had realized it and didn't feel the same way. I had to know, so I became a bit bolder. He didn't reject me, but he didn't encourage me either. Then Cedric died and everything seemed to go in fast motion.
He was so angry and emotional last year. The thing you have to know about Harry is that he's got these walls he builds around himself. He's not anything like the role he acts around everyone else. But I'd seen him when he let his guard down. He's traumatized, depressed, unstable, you name it. Last year, those walls started crumbling on their own. He just can't keep up the façade forever. He's practically dead inside, and I'm the only one who he'll talk with. Last night, I watched him stand at the window for hours when he thought I was asleep. I knew he was just standing there trying not to cry. I decided I couldn't take it anymore, so I wrapped my arms around him. He started sobbing. I'd never seen Harry cry before. I think it was his first time. After that, things started getting pretty intense, and he said he wanted me to, but at the same time something in his eyes told me to stop. When I started to pull away, he got a bit hysterical and I knew that he needed me. It was wonderful, but I learned something last night." He stopped, staring into his coffee with tears clouding in his eyes. Oliver and Percy waited patiently.
"I- I think Harry was raped by his uncle." Oliver dropped his mug in surprise and Percy leaned forward in disbelief.
"Did he tell you that?" Percy asked. Ron blushed.
"No, but I don't see any other explanation. It was like he wanted me to, and didn't want me to at the same time. We were both enjoying it until all the sudden his eyes glazed over and he was completely silent for a few minuets. When he came out of it he didn't want me to leave him, he was practically frantic for me to take him. I think he had a flashback. And then, he was enjoying it, but I felt he never got … well, you know."
"The symptoms sound right. Merlin." Percy said hollowly, looking at the closed door Harry was sleeping behind. "Of course we'll do everything we can to help you both. You're going to stay here for the summer, and I won't hear of anything else. I don't want you staying with someone that fills your head with garbage about homosexuality being wrong and that kind of nonsense. You and Harry need some time to sort things out in a calm, accepting environment." Percy said in that bossy tone that signaled he meant business.
"If by calm you mean boring then that sounds about right. Not much happens around here except Perc occasionally getting on a soap box about cauldron leaks." Oliver joked. Ron snickered into his mug and Percy rolled his eyes. "Of course," Oliver continued, "you'll have to come to all my games and practice with me at the park. And no doubt Percy will attempt to turn Harry into a good little housewife like he is." Ron laughed outright, and then only laughed harder when Percy snatched up their coffee mugs and went to the sink.
"I'm not a housewife, Oliver. Just because I can cook and I like keeping our home clean, and I clean up all your filthy quidditch gear does not make me a woman. That's insulting." Percy huffed as he agitatedly washed the dishes. This only made Oliver and Ron laugh harder. Percy realized what he was doing and smiled then, too. "So maybe I am a little homemaker. I didn't hear you complaining last night, Ollie." Ron blushed to the roots of his hair. Percy took one look at him, laughed, and then clarified.
"Last night I made Oliver a big fancy dinner because his team won in the playoffs. I wasn't referring to sex, Ronnikins." That only made Ron blush harder and Oliver laugh. Percy swatted him with a dishtowel.
"You'll wake up Harry. Keep it down. I have to finish up my report. If Ron doesn't want to get some more sleep, why don't the two of you go play some quidditch at the park?"
"Oh yeah! Congratulations on taking my old spot, Ron!" Oliver beamed.
"Well, I'm not really good at all. I'm not too bad if it's just me and Harry, but if anyone else is watching I suck." Ron said. Oliver looked like Christmas had come early.
"I haven't gotten to coach someone in forever. This is going to be great. But you should probably rest some with Harry. You don't look too chipper yourself. In the mean time, I'll go to the Burrow and get your things." Ron thought longingly of Harry curling up in his arms and immediately agreed.
The queen sized bed felt like heaven. Ron eagerly climbed in; smiling when he realized how tiny Harry looked curled up in the bed. Harry moved to press his face into Ron's chest, nuzzling against the soft material of his T-shirt. Placing a gentle kiss on Harry's forehead, he cradled his beautiful boyfriend in his arms and followed him into sleep.
See! Harry really does love Ron – he just doesn't know it yet. He'll get better, don't worry! I'm not going to make this too angsty. So what do you think about my theory on why Percy left? Everyone always pictures the Weasley parents as being loving and accepting, but I thought this would make an interesting spin on things.