Title: Hook, Line, and Sinker

Author: GrapeSmshr

Rated: G to PG-13, depending on the chapter

Coupling: HP/DM slashy goodness

Summary: H/D *slash* Everyone loves the holidays because love blooms. Each chapter is a different holiday in which Harry and Draco find romance. Fifteenth holiday: Arbor Day!

A/N: It's been a looooong time since I updated. I wish I could blame it on work and school (which did factor in, believe me), but I also just wasn't writing. So I apologize for that. This chapter has been plaguing me for a good month now. I had to do some research and writing and thinking to get it how I wanted. Hopefully I did everything justice, but I'll let you guys be the judges. So, read on and enjoy!

Holiday 15: Arbor Day

Rated: PG

It was one of those rare days when the weather was completely perfect. The sun was out, yet the vibrant azure sky was dotted with clouds. A subtle breeze made their robes wisp around them as they walked over to the greenhouses for Herbology.

"On days like this, I think they should cancel classes," Ron Weasley declared to his two best friends as they approached the greenhouse. "It's just too nice to be indoors."

"Which is why we will be working outside today, Mister Weasley," Professor Sprout broke in as the group of three entered the greenhouse.

Exchanging curious glances with Hermione Granger and Ron, Harry Potter led the way over to their respective seats, where the three had been working all year side by side.

Each had decided to keep Herbology as an elective for their last year, just as a fun class amidst all of the other classes chosen for their actual career choices. Not too many people chose this class in their seventh year, so it was an interspersing of students from all four Houses. Remarkably, a few Slytherins were also present. But each House got along very well. While there was the occasional mild spat, most of the time the air between them was civil.

Settling into his seat, Harry's eyes were drawn to the door, where a certain Slytherin had just entered the room.

Draco Malfoy, followed by Blaise Zabini and Pansy Parkinson. But Harry didn't focus on the other two; he rarely did. No, his attention was drawn to the fair-skinned teen who was currently taking a seat next to Harry, where he had freely chosen to sit at the beginning of the year.

This proximity of their bodies was what bothered Harry the most. Oh, he was definitely not disappointed by the fact that he got to sit next to the Slytherin teen three times a week. It was the fact that Draco had intentionally sat down next to him--Harry--out of his own free will, and with no ill intent, it seemed. It gave Harry a fleeting suspicion that the blonde may actually harbor some sort of feelings for him. He wished there was a way for him to tell with certainty.

Before he could further contemplate this, Professor Sprout clapped her hands together to signal the start of class.

"Today, in celebration of Arbor Day, we will be working outside," she said as she went around the room and set a somewhat large spherical green seed wrapped in plastic in front of each person. "Now, this is an individual project, but you will be working on the same plot as the person you are sitting next to."

When she said this, Harry's eyes immediately strayed to Draco. He was surprised to see gray eyes staring back at him. He had expected Draco to want to work with Blaise, who sat on the other side of the blonde.

"Looks like it's you and me, Potter," Draco said casually, picking up the seed in front of him and inspecting it. Out of the corner of his eyes, he glanced over at Harry, his mouth curving ever so subtly into a smile that was gone half a second later.

Once all of the packages were passed out, Professor Sprout announced, "In each of those bundles is a seed that you will be planting. But these are not just ordinary seeds. Before you plant them, you will be using an incantation that will extract a copy of your personality and seal it into the seed. Then we will plant them. We will be having a special class tomorrow morning"--several people groaned, as tomorrow was Saturday--"and will see what kinds of trees grew in accordance with your personalities." She then proceeded to demonstrate the incantation they were using, giving them the go ahead to unwrap their seeds from the plastic and charm them.

With the familiar swish of his wand, Harry said the incantation and practically jumped out of his seat as a tiny yellow ball of energy shot out from his chest and landed on the seed, where it flashed one more time before being absorbed. He quickly glanced around the room and sighed in relief as he saw similar happenings with his classmates.

"Now then, let's head outside," Professor Sprout called out as the last student finished the incantation. Taking the lead, she was obediently followed by the students, who were clutching their enchanted seeds and talking excitedly.

They were led out past the last greenhouse to a strip of land that was marked off in large square sections. Each plot had two shovels and a large plastic bag--of what, they couldn't tell.

Their instructions were to dig a hole a designated distance into the ground, then add some of the Magical Speed Growers dirt from the plastic bags. Professor Sprout assigned each pair of students a plot, warning them not to plant their seeds too close, or they wouldn't grow at all because the magical seeds would cancel each other out.

Trekking over to their assigned plot, Harry and Draco looked at each other, then at the surrounding groups, who had begun to dig. Shrugging, Harry grabbed a shovel and attacked the dirt. After a moment he glanced up to see Draco eyeing the other shovel skeptically. "Oh, come on. Even Malfoys aren't above a little menial labor."

Scoffing, Draco retorted, "Some of us have had decent upbringings, leaving labor to the laborers." But he picked up the shovel--very reluctantly--and began to dig.

Rolling his eyes, Harry continued on with his own digging.

After a good five minutes, he finally dug a hole that he was satisfied with. He plucked the seed from his pocket and gingerly dropped it into the hole, then covered it up with the magical dirt.

Draco had just finished digging and had dropped the seed. He made a face at the bag of magical dirt in his hands, not wanting to have to ruin his shoes by stomping on the dirt. They were new, after all.

"Oh, give me that." Harry grabbed the bag of dirt from Draco and buried the seed, stomping on the mound a bit roughly for good measure. "There." He dropped the bag and turned away. "What a girl," he grumbled under his breath.

Not long after, the bell sounded to signal the end of class. Professor Sprout gave them their time to meet the next morning, then dismissed the eager students for their lunch period.

Wiping his hands on the front of his robes, Harry nodded briefly to Draco before turning to meet up with Ron and Hermione.

"Potter? Thanks."

Harry paused briefly at the blonde's words. A smile played at the corners of his mouth as he walked away.

Joining the two, they made their way to the Great Hall for lunch. Between bites of food, all the trio could talk about was what they thought their trees would be.

"Mine had better be good. If I ended up with a girlie tree like a willow, I think I'd have to hex myself into unconsciousness," Ron said matter-of-factly, making a face.

"Actually, I think the willow would be good for you, Ron," Hermione answered, to which she received a glare. Promptly ignoring it, she explained, "Willows represent a certain dreamer's quality and refreshing honesty. Besides, willows also tend to represent attractiveness."

When she said this, Ron's entire face turned red as he stared in openmouthed shock at Hermione. Harry snorted into his glass of pumpkin juice.

"So, Harry, what about you? What do you think your tree will be?"

Fork stopping halfway to his mouth, Harry contemplated this. He finally answered, "I'll just be happy if anything grows. I'm not exactly Mister Personality, you know." He continued eating.

Hermione couldn't believe her ears. Harry really believed he had no personality? How dense could one person be? She didn't get cross with Harry all that often, but this was one of those proverbial extenuating circumstances. "How can you say you have no personality?" she exploded, slamming her hands down on the table and startling many of their fellow diners. "You're smart, funny, charismatic... You have an entire fan club! Not to mention--"

"Has anyone told you that you're quite beautiful when you're angry?" Harry interrupted smoothly with a dazzling smile.

Effectively abandoning her tirade, Hermione found herself at a loss for words. That comment was just so unexpected, so blatantly *Harry*. All she could do was stare at him dumbly.

Regarding her imposed bout of quietude, Harry only rolled his eyes and said, "Relax. You know I don't fish from that pond."

"Honestly, Hermione, making such a big deal over a simple comment," Ron scoffed, shoveling a forkful of food into his mouth.

"Ron's right. Besides, you'd be much more appreciated by a willow."

Sucking up his food in shock, Ron immediately began choking. He fell into a coughing fit as Harry thumped him rather forcefully on the back until the offending bit of food had been swallowed.

Rising from his seat, Harry gave his friends one last quirky grin before announcing, "I'm heading over to the library. Meet you in the common room later." Taking his leave, he ambled down the mostly deserted halls towards the library.

Being a seventh-year was grand. Every Friday saw only morning classes, as there was an implemented "study day" for the afternoons. And Harry had used his Friday afternoons quite wisely, all right: studying his Quidditch books, studying the best move during a game of wizard's chess, studying his former enemy...

The latter one was by far his favorite. It was like a hobby of his. Some days he found himself actively seeking Draco out so he could stare at the blonde. Indiscriminately, of course. But on those occasions when Harry happened to be caught staring, sparks flew. Not verbal or physical sparks, but the kind that originated deep from the fire-burning pits of stomachs and spread like unrelenting streams of lava through the rest of the body until the heat became so intense that passing out was a definite possibility...

Harry lived for those moments.

Settling into a table at the back of the library, Harry pulled out his Charms books and a scroll of parchment. He had every intention of getting some work done. But instead of starting his essay, he began drawing the sketchy outline of a tree. Before long, there were textured lines and large, heart-shaped leaves that covered most of the drawing. Harry was quite pleased. Staring off into space, his mind wandered over what his tree could be. He really couldn't wait for tomorrow.

As the seat in front of him was pulled out and occupied, Harry leaned back into his own seat, surprised. He found himself once again blessed with the blonde's presence.

"Is that how you get your work done, Potter? No wonder you're always so productive," Draco quipped lightly as he regarded the flustered Gryffindor with amusement.

Shaking his head, Harry answered, "I was thinking about Herbology tomorrow, about what kind of tree mine will turn out as."

Draco couldn't help but snicker. Leave it to Harry and his Gryffindor-ish personality. He himself really hadn't given much thought to what he would find in the morning. Unable to resist such an opportune moment for a comeback, he asked, "Hmm, does naïveté grow on trees?"

"I don't know; do ferrets?" Harry smiled casually, gathering his books together and standing up. "See you in the morning, Malfoy." And then he was walking away.

Watching Harry until he was gone, Draco turned his attention to the abandoned scroll of parchment on the table. Interest piqued, he plucked up the parchment, eyes raking over the simple yet beautiful sketch.

He wondered what kind of tree it was. It didn't look familiar to him. The details were lacking the grace of a skilled artist, but the drawing had this certain charm, this certain air of Harry.

For the first time ever, Draco found himself looking forward to Herbology.

The next morning, the class was waiting somewhat impatiently for Professor Sprout to lead them over to their tree plots. Sensing their anxiety and excitement, she cut her lecture short and allowed them to go see their trees.

As they approached the plots, she informed them that they would go from plot to plot as a class so she could tell the students what their respective trees represented.

The first plot belonged to Ron and Hermione. Bidding them forward, Professor Sprout had them stand by their trees, which towered over them. Both Gryffindors had grins of anticipation.

Hermione's tree, which was identified as an olive tree, was rooted from wisdom, which was a shock to no one. This was fueled by her characteristic love for reading and intelligent conversation, cheerful personality, sense of justice, and her blatant dislike for violence. At this explanation, Hermione held a smug expression. She knew her tree would be a good one!

While his tree was slightly shorter than Hermione's, Ron's fig tree was still impressive. Rooted in sensibility, the fig tree represented independence and a love for life. While it did tend to show a like for idleness (Harry and Hermione snickered at this). it was overshadowed by a great intelligence. When Ron heard this, he was quite surprised but immediately plastered a knowing grin on.

Moving onto the next plot, Pansy and Blaise stepped forward. Everyone perked up at this; Slytherins weren't exactly the most open people, so they were quite eager to learn something about them.

Pansy's tree needed no identification, as it was modestly spotted with vibrant crimson apples. Everyone was shocked to find that the apple tree was rooted in love, which seemed quite uncharacteristic of any Slytherin. Her other traits included flirtatiousness, charisma, imagination, and generosity. Pansy, apparently, was thrilled with hearing this, if her current dancing around gleefully was anything to be judged by.

Moving onto Blaise, his tree was identified as a fir, which was mysterious in nature. That suited Blaise quite well, as he rarely was one to show emotion of any kind. Besides mystery, there was also sophistication, stubbornness, ambition, modesty, and reliability. True to his tree's characteristics, Blaise took the information in stride.

As they made their way to the next plot, Harry could no longer curb his curiosity at waiting to look at his own tree. Glancing back into the further plots, his eyes fell upon the area in which he and Draco had been working the morning before. What he saw made him gasp loudly, drawing the attention of the class to him.

"What is it, Mister Potter?" Professor Sprout inquired as she approached him.

"Our plot--the tree," he managed to make out before running in the direction of his plot. He stopped in front of the massive tree, unable to tear his eyes away. He didn't move when Draco stood beside him, nor did he acknowledge the collective gasps of the other students.

"Oh, my," Professor Sprout said in an awed voice. It was unlike anything she had ever seen.

Off to the left, a somewhat small tree trunk was rooted, giving way to smooth bark that twisted and curled to the right. Off to the right of the plot, a large tree trunk sprouted up into a tower that curled to the left. About ten feet up, the two trees met and melded into one, the two different grains of wood dancing around and weaving in-between one another in a flourish of lush green leaves and sturdy branches. The distance from the two trunks was maybe five feet. There was an archway between the two trees, and the spot where they were fused dipped downward slightly, almost forming a curious heart shape.

"I--I don't know what to think," Professor Sprout murmured to herself. "I've never seen two personality trees do this before. Ever." She circled around the anomaly, quite fascinated. "Each one still has its own characteristics, but it's like they were drawn to one another during the growing process."

Interrupting the woman's thoughtful mumbling, Hermione asked, "Professor? What kinds of trees are they?"

Circling around to meet them, Professor Sprout laid a hand on the thick trunk of the tree on the right. "This tree is Mister Potter's," she said with a smile. "It's an oak tree, which is the epitome of strength and power." She glanced at Harry, amused by his flushed face. "The oak represents courage and independence, not to mention a certain disregard for the rules and a need to act. There is also a need for the familiar and a dislike for change. Ironically, the oak is known for often being struck by lightning."

All eyes were immediately on the famous scar on Harry's forehead, and he quite wanted to bury himself in some of that magical dirt.

"Mister Malfoy's tree is the ash," Professor Sprout continued loudly, trying to draw the attention away from Harry. "It is rooted in ambition, partnered by impulsiveness, demanding, intelligence, and a disregard for criticism." A couple of students snickered at this but were quickly muted when Draco glared at them. "There is also an air of trust and reliability and a tendency to take partnership very seriously."

As she said this, Harry's gaze fell upon Draco, who was staring back defiantly. They were silent, unmoving, but so many different emotions fluttered over their eyes and were gone as swiftly as they appeared.

"I must go research this," Professor Sprout said, then dismissed the class until later that afternoon.

Approaching their friend, Ron and Hermione were still awed by the hybrid tree. "You always have to be the different one," Ron teased, no hint of jealousy present.

"It really is quite beautiful," Hermione agreed. Lowering her voice, she added, "You know, the trees probably melded together because the two personalities in them were overpowered by their compatibility. Just a thought."

Thumping Harry on the shoulder with a grin, Ron took Hermione's elbow and steered her away with the others.

After a moment, Harry turned around to face Draco, whom he knew was still standing there. "So much for ferrets," he joked.

"Hmm." Draco appeared lost in thought. His mouth opened as if to say something, but his lips quickly pursed together before any words could escape. Finally he glanced up at Harry.

As the blonde said nothing, Harry supplied, "Who would've guessed that you never cared for criticism? I know I wouldn't have."

Lips almost curling upward, Draco all too quickly remembered that he didn't do smiles. Oh, what the hell. He found himself smiling pleasantly at the Gryffindor. "Don't forget my ambition," he added, unconsciously taking a step closer to Harry.

"Oh, never. Or your demanding personality."

"Or my impulsiveness." Another step closer.

"Or your taking partnership seriously..." Harry's voice trailed off as Draco stood directly in front of him, eyes locked and quickly darkening.

"Especially not that," Draco murmured as one hand crept up to gently encircle Harry's forearm, pulling the teen closer. Their breaths intermingled, mouths mere millimeters apart. And then their lips met, awkward and comfortable and hot and so much more. Draco's free hand tangled itself in Harry's robes as Harry leaned into the Slytherin, effectively losing himself in the contact.

With one last kiss, Draco murmured against Harry's lips, "Very seriously." Then he pulled back slightly, grinning. "So, do you still dislike change?"

Comically pondering this a moment, Harry laughed as Draco smacked his chest playfully. "Well, I think I'm beginning to see that sometimes change can be a good thing."

I'm such a tree lover. I am quite the advocate of paper saving and rainforest awareness and all that jazz. I've actually been wanting to do this holiday for a while, but I knew I'd have to do some good research, so I left it for later. I'm so happy I finally got to write it!

Now, for the unhappy news. I will no longer be able to update once a week. Yes, I love this fic to pieces, I absolutely do. But it took two months for me to get these last two chapters out! I just need a break. NO, I am not abandoning this fic! I am just not going to have current updates. I just can't. Plus I'm working on so many other fics right now. I have a songfic that I've been working on since last May that I want to finish. I have a short, slightly angsty fic that I want to finish. On top of those, I also have another songfic idea that I'm just *itching* to get started on, not to mention an epic, highly angsty fic I started a while back to. Oh, and a fluffy one-shot also. See? Lots of stuff! Plus I'm running out of holidays that I don't have to research. I just don't have the time right now to do the research.

So here are my thoughts. If you are from a different culture and have some wonderful/insane holidays that you'd love to share, please e-mail me with dates and details. That way I can cut out on some of the research and enrich everyone else with multicultural holiday chapters. I would greatly appreciate this!

I was going to reply to all of the reviews from last chapter, but I just spent the last two hours typing up this chapter, then typing up a looooong assignment for Criminology. So I apologize. But I love you guys! Please review! I could desperately use some motivation right now, not only for this fic but for my others as well. I seriously want to get some of these posted! Thanks so much for reading!