Unbeta'd. This was suppose to be longer, but I didn't have anything else to say other than this so enjoy this last chapter. It's about 60% of the normal size of an LA chapter. Sorry for any mistakes, and deal with them.
Why is happiness so elusive?
Why can't I reach out for it with my hand?
And catch it like that?
Why does it give me a glimpse?
And then take it away?
If only it would stay
And not drift away
Maybe then I wouldn't be so afraid
To let a little happiness in
If only it would stay
But it never seems to stay
It always fades away
And sadness replaces it instead
'Til my eyes have no more tears
Than I can shed
If only happiness would
Fall into my open arms
I would finally find some peace
And maybe then
I would feel loved
Happiness Caught, Captured, and Cornered
"And so that," he sighed, "is the situation that I'm in." His inner lips were bleeding. He tasted the salty taste of his own blood seeping from his split lips. It was his horribly bad habit. He kept reminding himself that he ought to quit it because it left his lips in awful shape, but since it wasn't actually harmful to his health like smoking cigarettes or getting wired on caffeine he found it a hard habit to break.
"Would you like my advice, my boy?"
Would he? Harry needed it like he had never needed anything from his dad before. There was something very special about the dad that wasn't really his real dad in that he loved his despite the fact he wasn't truly his and that he gave killer advice. But he was also slightly wary. His dad had a severe aversion to Lucius Malfoy, though on the other hand, James didn't really like anyone that he was interested in romantically. "Are you going to give unbiased advice?"
"I'll do my best," James promised, crossing his hand over his heart in the symbolic gesture that meant he was going to try to keep his word.
"I do need it, daddy," Harry murmured. "I don't know what to do or even who to choose."
"I think in a way you have already chosen."
Harry blinked. He had? When? "I did?"
"You didn't reject Lucius," he remarked, "and that is very telling. If you consider that you are in very good and solid relationship with a man that treats you like a prince, and yet you still couldn't say no to Lucius, then I think you're very much head over heels for him. Objectively speaking, I think what you feel for him has only gotten deeper over the years. Your mind knows it's risky, considering he's one of Hollywood's most sought after actors and he has god knows how many supermodels and actresses after him. But I think your heart wants him."
James was right, and that was why he had had a hard time giving Lucius a straight answer. The only straight answer he could have given him was to say no. It certainly couldn't have been yes. It wouldn't have been fair to Severus if he had said yes to Lucius when he was actually going out with him. Considering that he hadn't said no to Lucius when he ought to was a red flag. Lucius had deserved a no, and Severus had certainly deserved a yes. And yet here he was stuck between answers.
"Your mind wants Severus and your heart wants Lucius."
"What do you think?"
"I think in the long run as your dad that Severus's the better choice. What dad wouldn't want that man for your husband and lover? He treats you like a prince, though he might be a bit gruff and sarcastic doing so. All he has done so far has been above and beyond what most men do when they pursue women, and it's certainly more than what Lucius's ever done for you. But you, my boy, have never been one to hide from risks, and knowing you as I do I think you're going to run away with your heart and what it wants. You always were the one that went chasing after wild dreams, and this is certainly one of them. If you hadn't, you never would have agreed to become Lucius Malfoy's assistant."
Damn if his dad wasn't saying wasn't true. Lucius was the dangerous choice, and while Severus wasn't exactly a safe choice--- he was undeniably the better choice. Even he had to admit, the way that Severus treated him was the way that most boys dreamed of their boyfriend treating them. True, Severus might have a tendency to be a bit sarcastic and gruff in demeanor but his actions spoke louder than his words. As for Lucius, the only thing redeeming had been his confession at the very end.
"Yes my little prince?"
Harry blushed. "You think I should choose Severus."
James stared at Harry with knowing eyes. "You never do what I suggest."
"And you've always called me a fool for not, don't you?"
James smiled. "I have, that I'll admit."
"I think," Harry croaked, "I'm going to listen to you this time."
1 year later…
"HARRY!" he heard Tom yelling for him. Tom always seemed to be raising his voice at him. There were times when he wished that he hadn't decided to work for him. He made Harry's life miserable, but then again if he hadn't started working for his father as he sometimes referred to him in his mind, he wouldn't have gotten his first screenplay onto the big screen. Harry hated thinking he was using his connections, but if it hadn't been a good script he knew Tom wouldn't have used it--- son or not. That was at least comforting, though he also knew if he hadn't been Tom's son, no one would have even given his script a look through to begin with.
Now that Tom was producing Harry's script for him, and to add to that had put one of the most promising young directors on the project was another boost to his highly intellectual romantic liaison entitled I'm a Boy that Loves Too Much. There were touches of laughter and of sadness. It was a character driven piece and though a bit dialogue heavy, it was only conversational. It moved forward, not fast or slow but it moved.
The play was about a boy, that as the title indicated, loved too much and too deeply that it was a wonder that he hadn't given up on love yet. The first boy he fell in love with used him for his own good and then dumped him. The second boy was much better and loved him as much as he loved him. It seemed perfect. They got married, and then his eye started to stray. They divorced and he was left with nothing. That was when number three walked into his life and made him fall in love all over again. He hadn't given up on it, even if love the first two times hadn't turned out so good. The third time wasn't the charm. Their love wasn't perfect, but despite their arguments and disagreements, they stuck it out and were still together at script's end.
It was a weird and odd play. Tom hadn't been sure at first if he wanted to produce it personally or not, but he decided that if anyone was going to be able to chop it to standard, it was going to be him. Harry also knew, that his father desperately wanted this play to succeed so that it couldn't be said that he was using his production company as his son's private pathway to success. He wanted the world to know that he had earned it. And hadn't he? Tom hadn't even liked or believed in the play as much as Sirius, his right hand man had. And it was Sirius that had been an instrumental part in getting Tom to produce it. Tom had because Sirius was directing it.
"I'm coming!" he shouted, grabbing the notes he had made to the script that Sirius and Tom had already marked up. Tom wasn't a patient man, and he ought to know that when he had started working under him for his debut's production. He was a hard taskmaster and he had seen actors and actresses cringed when he wasn't happy. It was lucky Sirius was also part of the production project or else this was going to be a miserable set.
"Did you look over the notes and cuts that Sirius and I made?" he demanded.
He nodded. "I did."
"What do you think?"
They intended to cut a major scene out of the beginning and they had also fiddled with the end quite a bit. He actually wasn't that happy with what they were doing to the end, but he could handle the beginning. He had thought about taking that part out to make the film tighter, but he had ended up leaving it in incase they did want the additional character developing. He had already mentally calculated the movie skimmed over two hours and with the scene cut it would skim under two hours.
"I'd rather you didn't change the ending."
"It's more tragic and poignant this way," Tom stated.
He sighed. "I know, but I like the happy ending. I don't know," he remarked. "I just feel as if I'd rather have the film have a feel good feel about it, if you know what I mean? I mean, it has it's tragic and sad moments, and I think at the end the fact they stay together is a sweet, sweet thing."
"You are an absolutely sap now that you're heads over heels in love," Tom muttered, but he didn't sound too upset about it. Harry knew that it was because that Tom actually liked his fiancé. His father actually approved of Severus in his own way. Of course, Harry knew that no one was ever going to be good enough for him in Tom's eyes, but the love of his life was about as good as it got, Tom thought and that was good enough. "I think with the sadder and more abrupt ending, it makes this film bitingly realistic in the love relationship department. Love is not a sweet thing. It's…"
"Atrocious," Harry finished for him. "Is it not?"
He frowned, as if debating the merits of the word. "Perhaps," Tom remarked slowly, "it is."
Harry grinned. It wasn't often that Tom agreed with him. "But there are times," Harry countered, "when it is very sweet and not atrocious at all. And I want this film to show that, that even if it is atrocious at times, it's not always like that."
"Harry… that's not…"
"Real life?" Harry whispered. "I think I've experienced a love that was atrocious. To have someone, someone you love so deeply not see that for five years? I think that's pretty atrocious. I think that now that my love has been returned as it's given, it's the sweetest thing. I can't help it, father, if I'm happy and my writing shows it?"
His lips were pressed into a firm line. "You are stubborn."
Harry knew that was as close of a yes to keeping the original ending as was going to come out of Tom. He hated to have to back down from anything for he had gotten that stubborn gene for him. "I am," he agreed.
"Just like me."
6 months later…
Tonight was the big night. It was the premiere of I'm a Boy that Loves Too Much. A lot of important people were attending it thanks to Tom. And as much as he was grateful to his father, he was more appreciative of the fine film that Tom had made his script into. I'm a Boy that Loves Too Much was a beautiful production that had been shot through a glorious Irish background that was lush with life and loveliness. It was all Tom hoped that Harry's first effort would be and all that awaited now was the film reviews.
"It's going to be okay."
Harry knew that voice. He knew that voice anywhere. What was he doing here? He wasn't supposed to be here, he was supposed to be in Paris for that big show of his that he had. But he was here and he'd never been happier to see him. "You're here!" he exclaimed, Harry's eyes shining with happiness. "You're really here!"
Severus smiled. "I wouldn't have missed it for anything, you know that."
"But your show…"
"It's not as important as this," he gestured to the crowds of people that were waiting for the red carpet show, "because this is your first film, and that show was my 40th or something like that." He shrugged. "I will have another show, but you will never have another first film premiere, will you?"
Harry kissed him soundly on the lips and threaded his fingers through Severus's. "I'm glad you're here."
"I never intended to miss this."
Inside of him, Harry knew that Severus would be there. He'd almost expected it. "Thank you."
"You're very welcome," Severus murmured throatily as his arm wrapped around his waist. "Now are you ready for your big moment?"
Harry wasn't so sure if he was or wasn't, but that didn't really matter did it? Regardless of whether he was ready or not, this was the big moment and he was going to have to deal with it. And from the way that his father was gesturing for his to come forward, to whatever entertainment magazine he was being interviewed for, it was now or never. Harry took a deep breath and stepped forward, glad that Severus was at his side.
Even during Harry's uncertain period, when he had actually was leaning toward falling for Lucius again, Severus had been there as his steady rock. Severus had even offered advice that perhaps he should chase what has been sort of like love at first sight for him. But in the end, Harry had decided that the man that was ultimately right for him was Severus Snape. There was no one else he could imagine standing there and being there for him like he was.
"And this is my son, Harry," Tom announced to the group of reporters that were standing clustered around the famous producer. "He's the one that's responsible for writing the script to this film."
A microphone was thrust at Harry as a reporter from whatever magazine asked, "So what was the inspiration behind this? Was it based on real life?"
Harry smiled a bit nervous as he told himself not to back away from the bold reporter. "I think to a degree, everything you write is somewhat based on real life. But if the question you're asking if this is a true story, then I have to say that it's not."
"Is it true," another reporter asked, "that you and Lucius Malfoy were at one time romantically involved?"
His smile faded a little. "We were never romantically involved," he answered softly, glancing briefly at Severus to see his expression. He didn't look the least bit concerned and that made her feel that much stronger. "I was simply his assistant."
Not dissuaded by the negative response, the reporter persisted by changing up the question, "Were you ever in love with him?"
He bit his bottom lip. He was not given to lying. "Yes."
The reporter smiled, satisfied with the answer and while she could have gone further in probing Harry Potter about her unreturned feelings for Lucius Malfoy, she decided that she had more than enough truth to build rumor over. The other reporters weren't satisfied with that single word of gossip though, so a different reporter inquired instead, "Would you want to be with him if you could?"
He could have been with him, but… "No," Harry whispered softly, his hand squeezing Severus's comfortingly, "I would not. I love my fiancé very much. My life wouldn't be complete without him. There is no one that is more important than he is to me. The love I felt for Lucius Malfoy was love at first sight and nothing truly, madly, and deeply what love should be, which the love that I feel for Severus is."
This reporter smiled touched by the love that was clearly shining in Harry's eyes. Kinder than the rest of his vulture kind, he asked, "When will the wedding be?"
"This spring, for spring is a new beginning for everything is it not?"
Draco threw the tabloid at his father, who was staring at a half filled shot glass with a lone eyed look that was all too often on his face. On the very front of the tabloid was a big splash picture of Harry Potter and his fiancé, Severus Snape holding hands as they walked down the red carpet of his first screenplay, I'm a Boy that Loves Too Much. "You have no one but yourself to blame," he told his father the honest to god truth. "If you hadn't stuck with Rebecca as long as you did, even though you and her were only married for appearance sake's, you might be the one whose hand Harry is holding."
Lucius didn't say anything and didn't look at his son either. Instead, he drained the shot glass and shoved the newsprint out of the way. There had been a lot written up about either himself or Harry recently because of his debut film effort. There was a lot of talk going on about the undercurrent of the movie. Somehow, someone had found out about the feelings that both of them had shared for each other. If there was a name that could make the papers sell, he thought with a sneer, it was Lucius Malfoy.
Harry had been dragged into it, and though there was a smile on his face in the photo, he could tell that there was a strain to it. The debut of his first screenplay shouldn't have made headlines because of the supposed story of his love for him. It should have been the merits of his film. Lucius was afraid that his first film would only be remembered for the drama it had created rather than the drama that was on the screen. It was a pity because it was a very good film. It was worth the tears that it would wring from its audience. It was something he ought to be proud of.
"Don't you have anything to say?" Draco demanded.
Lucius shrugged listlessly. He heard what his son was saying, but he didn't really give a damn. He had tried not to think about Harry in the year or so since their relationship had taken the dead end route. It wasn't as if communications were totally cut, but whatever hopes he had had of getting Harry by his side had evaporated six months before when he and Severus Snape had announced their engagement to the press. It wasn't as if he hadn't been expecting it. He had, but he had hoped that perhaps their relationship would fall through and that he would be there to comfort Harry into his time of need.
He had had six months to adjust to the fact that that wasn't going to happen and that he was going to marry the designer. It wasn't as if he could do anything to change that fact. He had seen the way they were together. They complimented each other perfectly. And he had to admit the way that Severus treated Harry was far better than he had, at least initially. But by the time he had realized what a jewel that he had in front of him, it had already been too late. Severus had seen the preciousness that he was before he had. He had been a blind fool.
"Aren't you going to say anything?"
He stared up from his empty glass to Draco and raised it. "Cheers to their upcoming nuptials. I wish them the best and I wish that I might trade places with the blasted bugger. Is that what you wanted to hear?"
"They aren't married yet," Draco stated softly.
Lucius snorted. "I'm that big of a bastard to ruin something good that he has. If he's happy with him," he gestured to the picture, "and it looks as if he is, then I've got to be happy for him, right?"
Draco's eyes slid down to the picture. "You've changed then."
Lucius poured himself another shot of vodka. "I suppose I have."
"If you had changed earlier, you might have had him."
"But it's too late."
"Yes," Draco agreed, "it's too late now."
Much too late.
3 months later…
"Do you promise to love him and cherish him in sickness, in health, and…"
"I do," Severus murmured.
"I do," Harry whispered.
Their wedding had finally arrived. It seemed to have taken forever. The preparations had been mad chaos the last month. It had seemed like eternity before the big day had finally arrived. Harry had worried that he might not enjoy it because he was too caught in planning for it. But when the morning had come, Harry's dad and father had stripped him of his cell phone and put him in a room with a hairdresser and makeup artist who were to pamper and prepare him for his wedding. He wasn't allowed to stress or worry about it.
And so he hadn't.
"You may kiss the husband."
Now he was here saying that he was going to spend the rest of his life with the man that he loved. He couldn't have been happier. It had taken Harry a long time to get here. Nearly two years ago, he hadn't even known which man he wanted in his life. But now he couldn't imagine any man but Severus Snape in his life. To have anyone else simply wouldn't be right. He smiled brilliantly as his lips descended down on to him to kiss the breath out of him. Even now, after all this time--- he could still kiss him until Harry's knees would evaporate out from under him. And every time it only got better.
"I love you."
"I love you more."
Harry kissed him.
Severus kissed him.
They kissed each other.
And life was as perfect as it could be.
Author's Note: I might be persuaded to write an alternate ending. How did you like this ending?