Title: Let the Light In

Author: MauVeGoddess

Pairings: Draco/Ron, Harry/Hermione

Warning: Slash fic. If you don't like slash, please leave now, but don't flame us.

Disclaimer: Harry Potter, etc., belongs to J.K. Rowling et al.

Summary: Ron is drifting apart from his friends. Draco is blinded by his father when he refuses the Dark Mark. Will a new friendship form?

Chapter One

Need to be Alone

"But Harry—" The slamming door punctuated Ron's exasperated words.

"I just need to be alone!" Harry shouted through the door. Ron heard him run off.

Ron knew that if he tried to follow him, he would only anger Harry more. Sitting down on his bed, he stretched out and picked up the copy of Quidditch Through the Ages lying on his bedside table. Quidditch always relaxed him. Soon after that he dosed off, book still atop his chest.

Ron woke up to the front door slamming. Opening his eyes, he looked up at the spot on his ceiling that had been bewitched to read the time. Four o'clock. He had probably only been asleep for about an hour. He removed the book from his stomach and contemplated whether or not it was worth it to get up and see who was home. Bill and Charlie didn't live with them anymore. Fred and George's joke shop was doing well now, and they usually didn't get home until six or seven each night. Ginny was spending the day at Luna Lovegood's house and wouldn't be back until after dinner. With a small groan, he pivoted out of bed and stood up. Ron stretched and tidied out his covers. He walked out of his bedroom and down the hall until he came to the stairwell.

Ron heard urgent whispers in the living room. Molly Weasley was arguing furiously with her husband. Ron crept quietly down the stairs and peered through the doorframe. Harry was sprawled limply across the couch. Ron stifled a gasp as he looked at his friend, lying there lifelessly. It was all he could do not to run towards him and see if he was alright, but he needed to hear what his parents were saying.

Pressing his back flat against the wall, he turned his head until he could see his parents. His mother was standing stiffly in the middle of the living room, as she always did when she argued. His father stood opposite her, slouching slightly in defeat. They both looked very worn out, clothing askew and dirt-streaked from running home with Harry's prostrate form.

"We can't bring him to St. Mungo's, Arthur. What if Voldemort's still out there? He could be waiting until we leave to finish Harry off!" Molly Weasley's face was red from the effort of whispering angrily.

"Now, Molly. Harry needs professional care right away. You know that St. Mungo's is the only place that can deal with injuries this bad. Do we want Harry to die while we're waiting for Voldemort to come kill him?" Arthur countered. He gave a concerned glance at his wife, who immediately fired back.

"Arthur! Are you saying my magical skills aren't—"

"Molly, I just want to—"

Ron pulled his head back, resting it against the wall, and shut his eyes to block out the argument. He wondered if he could have done anything differently to prevent this. He should have stopped Harry, should have gone with him at least. His last words to his friend rang over and over in his mind. Ron straightened up slowly and walked silently until he was practically between his parents. Only then did they look up and acknowledge his presence. Ron used the opportunity to voice his opinion.

"Mom—Dad—Look, he went for that—walk—hours ago. Who knows how long he's been unconscious? We need to get him to St. Mungo's now. He's been lying here long enough." Both his parents looked at him, taking time to register what he had said. Coming to her senses, his mother frowned.

"Ron! How many times have I told you not to eavesdrop? I mean—" Molly Weasley was interrupted by Arthur.

"Molly, would you please stop yelling at Ron for just a minute and listen to what he has to say! Harry could be dying right now, for all we know!"

Mrs. Weasley, for once in her life, shut up in the middle of a violent disciplinary monologue.

"Go on, Ron. Take Arthur's side. You guys always band against me." She looked from her husband to her son, waiting for whatever else he had to say.

"Well… that was pretty much what I had to say," Ron concluded. He saw the look of finality that his dad gave his mom, and realized that the discussion was over. Mr. Weasley gave a sympathetic smile to his wife and glanced over at Harry.

"We'll have to Floo him to St. Mungo's." said Molly, quickly recovering from the defeat. "We won't be able to Apparate him while he's unconscious."

"Right. Well, let's get him over to the fireplace. Wingardium Leviosa." Mr. Weasley flicked his wand in the air. Harry's body floated gently over to where they now stood, and Mr. Weasley caught him, carrying him into the chimney. Mrs. Weasley through in some floo powder, and Mr. Weasley's clear order rang out as they disappeared. "St. Mungo's!"

Ron took a handful of floo powder and went next. Mrs. Weasley sighed, and with one last glance at the empty house, took some herself and shouted the name of the hospital into the fire.

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