Warnings: Angst, AU?, Dark, Disturbed, Language, Mild Squick, References to NCS, Slash.
Disclaimer: Harry Potter does not belong to Becka; characters are used without permission for a non-profit purpose. No infringement is intended.
It's quiet on the practice field. Quidditch is all over and done for the day, and everyone's gone home. Draco likes it that way. An empty playing field, with no one to care that he's staring into the sky. It's like his safe haven. Only someone's standing in the middle of the field. Draco knows him, recognizes his nemesis instantly.
He wonders if the other boy comes here for the same reason he does. He turns to leave, but a quiet voice stops him.
"I forgive you, you know."
"Last I checked, you were an asshole, not deaf. I forgive you for that, too."
"Lost your mind, Potter?"
"My name's Harry. Well, that's what people tell me, anyway."
"You have, haven't you? You're nutters."
"You're not listening. I'll forgive you for that, because I don't think you know how. I suppose my name's Harry, but if you listen to the Dursleys, it's 'freak.' Or if you listen to Dumbledore, it's 'Golden Boy.' You could go with the wizarding world, but they're sort of split between 'The-Boy-Who-Lived,' and 'The-Next-Dark-Lord.' Really, people are so silly."
"Harry. And you're Draco."
"Merlin, you _are_ nutters."
"No, no, I don't think so. Not completely, anyway. Do you listen to your father?"
"Of course. Why?"
"What am I to him? A pathetic bug to be annihilated? An irritating thorn in Voldemort's side?"
"Both, actually. ...I'm not talking to you."
"Could have fooled me."
"No, I mean – Merlin – I mean that I'm not being drawn into a conversation with a raving lunatic."
"I forgive you."
"Stop _saying_ that."
"Why? It's the truth."
"What exactly are you forgiving me for?"
"Plenty. Would you like a list, or just a brief overview?"
"Completely nutters. I'm not having this conversation with you."
"I rather think you are."
"What are you forgiving me for? Not...not that I care, mind you."
"I forgive you for a lot of things, Draco. I forgive you for ignoring what your heart tells you. I forgive you for trying to follow in your father's footsteps. I forgive you for being a child."
"Shove it, Potter. I'm not a child."
"You are. But I already forgave you for that."
"I'm just as old as you are. Are you a child too, then?"
"I wish I was. I wish I was a child, with a child's understanding, and I wish that I could walk on the beach and sink my toes in the sand. I wish I could kiss someone with cotton candy stained lips, and hog the blankets at night. I wish I could play Quidditch on every Sunday and eat dinner with a family. I wish –"
"Why can't you?"
"Because I'm not a child. And all the wishing in the world won't change that."
"Harry. I think I told you that. Or maybe I just explained it to you, but you weren't listening. I'd like to be Harry. Harry's a child."
"I'm neither, I think. I forgive you for not understanding."
"I understand perfectly well. You're _nutters_."
"Maybe you're right. I still forgive you."
"Why are you saying all this?"
"Because I'm the only one who can. I forgive you for being filled with hate. I forgive you for thinking that you hate me –"
"I _do_ hate you, Potter."
"You hate Potter because he's better in Quidditch. You hate the Golden Boy because he's got the approval of the whole school. You hate The-Boy-Who-Lived because your father told you to. But I don't think you hate Harry, because you don't know him."
"You're talking about yourself in third person."
"No, I'm not. I already know how you feel about me, but I'll leave that off until you've accepted it."
"Accepted _what_? There's no acceptance going on here."
"I forgive you for that, too."
"Merlin, Potter, shut _up_."
"I can't, Draco, because I'm not him. I had a dream yesterday about when I was still a child."
"Spare me the theatrics. I don't need to know about your privileged life."
"I was staring at the inside of my cupboard."
"_Your_ cupboard? Why would you want to own a cupboard?"
"I didn't own it. It's where I slept."
"I was staring at the door, because I didn't want to go to sleep. I knew that the Dursleys were at the beach, and I knew that it would be hours before they got back. I wanted to go to the kitchen and get some hot chocolate."
"...why didn't you?"
"Because they'd locked the door, of course. And when I was staring at the door, I realized that I didn't want them to come back. I didn't want my aunt and my cousin to go to bed. I didn't want my uncle to hurt me when they were asleep. I remember thinking that if they didn't come back, I could just go to bed everyday until I died."
"Harry. Or at least, I'd like to be. I had another dream, too."
"...what did you dream about?"
"I dreamed about taking the kitchen knife that Uncle Vernon always used on me and cutting him into little pieces. That way, when I cooked breakfast for Dudley and Aunt Petunia the next morning, I could fry the bacon with his fat."
"Harry. Didn't I tell you that? I forgive you for not remembering. I suppose I don't seem very real. Well, I mean, I'm _not_ real, but that's only because no one wanted me to be."
"Me. Or so I like to think. Maybe I'm just deluding myself. I'm not a very nice person, you know."
"You are. You're Dumbledore's Golden Boy. You have to be."
"I'm not. Did you know I see Voldemort every night in my dreams? Only they're not really dreams. It's the scar, you see. It's a direct link to him."
"Harry. I swear, you're pretty slow sometimes, Draco."
"...you see...what does he…?"
"Every night. I used to wake up screaming, but it upset the rest of my housemates, so I learned to stop. After you've dreamed about doing that sort of thing to your relatives, or had it done to you, it's kind of a moot point to see it in action on someone else. Or maybe the dreams started after the visions. I don't remember."
"Doing...doing what sort of thing?"
"Oh, the usual. Cutting Muggles into pieces. Raping Muggle children. Making Muggles bleed. I've come to think of it as an art form, I suppose. Voldemort's a master. I could probably be one, too. Except the raping bit. That hurts too much, from what I remember. And children are supposed to drink hot chocolate, not choke on semen."
"Making Muggles bleed though...I think I could do that. I want to try, sometimes. Two days ago, your father did this wicked thing with a carving knife –"
"Why, Draco? Oh, that's right. You've never seen your father in action, have you? I understand why he's one of Voldemort's inner circle. I'd never realized it was possible to completely skin someone while they're still breathing. I always thought the blood loss would be too great, or that they'd go into shock. See, if you use a numbing spell that wears off slowly, the body has plenty of time to send out endorphins to keep the body from going into shock –"
"I must say, it was beautiful. He made that girl wings from the skin of her own back."
"Harry. Does it make you uncomfortable?"
"I'm sorry. You'll have to get used to it if you want to be a Death Eater. I'll forgive you if you do, you know. But they've got these blood sports every week, and you'd be expected to attend most of them, even if you didn't participate."
"I don't...I don't know what I want…"
"Really? Maybe you're not such a child, then. I liked you better when you were. You were so innocent. It was beautiful."
"I don't...I mean, my father expects…"
"Still trying to break out of your shell? Well, _I_ don't expect anything, which gives me every right and reason to forgive you. I don't expect you'll understand it, either, and certainly you won't accept it, but it's there for you, when you do. Even if I won't be."
"Of course not, Draco. I'd never leave you willingly. But Voldemort's going to kill me, eventually. It's a prophecy, you see. The connection between our scars. When one of us dies, both of us die."
"Progress! Thank you, Draco. But you're not a child anymore, so you shouldn't be talking to Harry. I'd much rather you talked to me."
"Who are you?"
"I don't really know. Would you name me?"
"I forgive you."
"I forgive you for not accepting that you love me, too."
"I don't love you!"
"But you do. I'll even prove it to you. Who do you think about everyday?"
"Lots of people! My father! Snape! Dumbledore!"
"Who do you hate most at this school?"
"Who do you want to destroy in Quidditch?"
"Who do you spend your nights trying to come up with pranks to play on?"
"Who do you taunt whenever you get the chance?"
"Who makes you so mad that you want to scream?"
"Who would you kill if you had the chance?"
"So, I say again, Draco, who do you think about everyday?"
"Very good. You think about Harry everyday. You spend your nights coming up with new ways of getting his attention. You can't be in the same room with him without your heart wanting to leap out of your chest because you want him to notice you. You want him to hate you. You want him to suffer. And when it comes right down to it, you just _want_ him."
"...that's not...you're twisting everything around…"
"You want him to notice you, Draco. You're always thinking about him. You're pissed at him because he should be _bowing_ to you. He should be down on his knees, looking up at you with adoration. You're Draco Malfoy, aren't you? Hasn't everyone always bowed down to you because of your father? Harry doesn't, but you want him to so badly."
"You want him on his knees. You want him to know you're better than he is."
"Harry. What do you want me to do?"
"Harry. I...I want…"
"You want me."
"...I want you."
"You hate me."
"...I do. I hate you so much –"
"You love hating me."
"I love hating you."
"Why do you love to hate me, Draco?"
"Oh, Merlin – I...I love hating you because…"
"You're almost out of that shell, Draco. Why? Why do you love hating me?"
"Because...because it's easier than loving you."
"Very good, Draco. But you do love me. You can't help it, can you?"
"…no. No, I can't. Ever since I saw you in the robe shop, I wanted you. I wanted to love you. But I couldn't, because you were Harry bloody Potter, so I hated you because it was easier. I hated you because everyone expected me to. I hated you because you were so fucking perfect, and you're right, you're so fucking _right_. I wanted you on your knees –"
"I'm on my knees now, Draco."
"I wanted you to _touch_ me. Not even my own _father_ touches me. He doesn't kiss me on the cheek. He doesn't hug me when I'm scared. I have to – I have to –"
"You have to be a perfect copy of him, because he'd never love you otherwise."
"_Yes_. But I still wanted you, I wanted you to notice me, even if you only hated me –"
"I never hated you, Draco."
"– I _needed_ you to hate me, so I could hate you, but Merlin –"
"– I wanted you so badly. I do."
"You love me."
"I love you."
"I know, Draco. I love you, too."
"You...you love me?"
"Isn't it obvious? I'm here on my knees in front of you. That's my hand that's slipping underneath your robe, by the way. And in a minute, I'm going to stop talking, because my mouth will be doing other things –"
"Oh, Merlin –"
"Harry! I –"
"– want you –"
" – so _fucking_ – so _much_–"
"I did that to you. I suppose I'm pretty good at it. Uncle Vernon always did tell me he hated my mouth, but he never complained. I'm pretty fucked up in the head, you know."
"I love you."
"I know, Draco. I love you, too. I'll be here tomorrow until the day I die."
"That's my promise. I'll be here every tomorrow, waiting for you, until the day I die."
"...I want to name you, now that I know you."
"Who am I, Draco?"
"That's me, then."
"...can you forgive me for loving you?"
"Never. But I'll forgive you for everything else."