A/N: This is a Faith insert. It comes after Faith, and maybe somewhere in the sequel. It can be read as a stand alone piece. The poem used is by John Donne, titled, The Good-Morrow.
Disclaimer: I don't own them, nor the poem. I'm just using them for a bit. No money is being made off of this. Please don't sue me.
Neville was nearly asleep on the couch, his head resting on Blaise's lap. His grandmother's book of poetry lay across his chest, and he turned to a random page. A green and black throw was tossed over his legs, and his toes peeked out from under the far edge.
"Aren't you going to read it?"
Blaise's question stirred him out of a light doze. He turned his head and looked up at the boy. "No, probably not."
"Then why take it out?" The sable-haired Slytherin's face was sharp in the light of the fire. Dark shadows swept one side of his face as he stared down at Neville.
"To tell her I looked at it."
A small smile touched the larger boy's face. Long fingers traced Neville's nose and cheeks. "You should read it. It is a gift from her to you." There were still bags under Blaise's eyes, and the fading bruise that had once covered the entire side of his face could still be seen under the right light. The ex-Gryffindor was not without his own wounds; his ribs still ached and his left elbow would need attention for the rest of his life, if he wanted it to not lock up on him.
Neville frowned but picked up the book. He closed it and let his fingers explore the outside cover. "It's old," he said, the pad of his thumb caressing the worn edges. He brought it to his nose and inhaled. The sharp scent of leather and old ink invaded his nose. He sneezed. "Smells like the library." Blaise's chuckle was quiet and he let his fingers card through Neville's hair.
The common room was empty. A Saturday, with the term nearly at an end, had most of the occupants of the dorm at Hogsmead or chasing each other about the halls of the castle. Draco and Harry had been in the room for a bit – Potter's recovering frame was still weak, and he tired easily. Tremors still rocked the once solid hands every now and then, and the look that entered Harry's eyes during these times nearly tore Neville apart.
"Do you think Harry will ever get better?"
Blaise shifted and stayed quiet. The other boy stared into the flames, their light dominating the room. "I don't know. I hope so. Harry tries to shrug it off, but his body…" He sighed. "We'll wait and see. He shouldn't have pushed himself so hard."
Neville swallowed and looked away, hugging the book to his chest tight. "If he hadn't, we might have died."
"But we didn't." Hands ran through his hair and he tilted his face to meet dark eyes. "We didn't. And yes, it was thanks to Harry, but also to you."
Neville flushed and tried to look away. "I didn't do a thing."
"Yes you did." Soft lips touched his temple and then vanished. The quiet was filled with the sounds of the fire for a long while.
"Did the book belong to your grandmother?"
Neville opened sleepy eyes and frowned. "What?"
His eyebrows furrowed and he lifted the volume so he could see the faded print on the outside cover. He opened the first page and froze. Blaise felt him tense and lifted the object from his numb fingers.
"To my love, on our wedding day…" His voice trailed off as he read the names. "Oh." His tone was soft. "I see now."
"I…didn't know. She sent it after we got the castle under control. Not a note, or anything. Just the book." Neville crossed his arms over his chest and turned onto his side. He curled into the warm lap and turned his face into the strong thigh covered by soft trousers. His shoulders hunched, and a warm hand ran tight circles in the small of his back.
"There's a page marked in here. It has a ribbon in it."
"Read it to me?" He had no clear memories of his parents. Just made up ones, from stories his grandmother had told him. He knew them all by heart. He knew there were boxes of their things in the attic, but his grandmother never let him go through them. She doled out the precious objects, almost loath to answer questions about how his parents used to be. Neville understood her reluctance, but could not help the small stabs of resentment that touched his heart every now and then.
Iwonder by my troth, what thou and I
Did, till we loved ? were we not wean'd till then ?
But suck'd on country pleasures, childishly ?
Or snorted we in the Seven Sleepers' den ?
'Twas so ; but this, all pleasures fancies be ;
If ever any beauty I did see,
Which I desired, and got, 'twas but a dream of thee.
And now good-morrow to our waking souls,
Which watch not one another out of fear ;
For love all love of other sights controls,
And makes one little room an everywhere.
Let sea-discoverers to new worlds have gone ;
Let maps to other, worlds on worlds have shown ;
Let us possess one world ; each hath one, and is one.
My face in thine eye, thine in mine appears,
And true plain hearts do in the faces rest ;
Where can we find two better hemispheres
Without sharp north, without declining west ?
Whatever dies, was not mix'd equally ;
If our two loves be one, or thou and I
Love so alike that none can slacken, none can die.
He was glad Blaise could not see his face. He drew in a shuddering breath and let it out slowly. "I wonder why she sent it."
"Sometimes it takes nearly loosing a person to recognize all the missed chances of our lives." The book was closed and Neville could hear it set on the small end table.
"Do you think…" He had to clear his throat. "Do you think they still remember each other? Do you think they…"
"They could never forget you." Blaise's arms pulled him close. Neville turned his face into the crook where shoulder met neck and held on tight. His eyes remained dry, but a painful lump had formed in his throat.
"I don't miss them." The tiny whisper caused a shudder to work down his spine. "I never knew them. I have nothing concrete, no images or sounds to remember what they were like…before. I just remember the attack, and the screams."
Blaise's hold tightened and he laid a cheek against the smooth hair. "I'm sorry."
"Me too." Neville relaxed his hold on the other boy's shirt. He turned his head and reached for the book. He held the worn volume between his hot palms and rested his forehead against the spine. "Maybe I'll take this in the next time I go see them."
"I'll go with you."
"You don't have to."
Blaise brushed his chin along Neville's temple and pressed his lips against the flushed skin. "I want to." He pulled the blanket up around them, hiding their forms from view.
"Thank you." Heat settled into their bones. Neville still clutched the book to his chest, but his eyes grew heavy, till they finally closed. Blaise stayed awake, his eyes sightless as they stared into the roaring fire. His cheek was pressed against the silken hair, and his arms were wrapped tight around Neville's body.
"My face in thine eye, thine in mine appears," he murmured. He shifted and pulled Neville more fully onto his lap. The ex-Gryffindor did not wake, but merely sighed in his sleep and curled further into Blaise's embrace. "Will you still see me, Neville Longbottom, a thousand years from now? Will you even want to?"
"He will." Harry's rough whisper appeared at his elbow. The green eyes were black in the light of the fire. Blaise stared up at the small boy, a chill touching the back of his neck.
A small smile slid across the narrow face. "Sometimes." He touched Neville's bowed head. "You'll be fine, don't worry." He let his hand drop and he looked away. He blinked and swayed, a small frown creasing the skin between his eyes.
"Harry?" Draco's pale form appeared out of the darkness. He rested his hands on the thin shoulders.
"Why am I in the common room?" Harry shook his head and a wry smile curled his lips. "I'm sleep walking again." He patted the blond's hands and pulled out of the loose hold. He glanced down at Blaise, as though seeing him for the first time. "Sorry. Didn't mean to disturb you."
"Of course." Blaise watched the boy wander back towards the hall. He met the blond's worried gaze with one of his own.
"He's doing it less now." Deep shadows were still etched on Draco's face.
"Does Black know?"
Something twisted across Draco's expression. "I don't know." He tensed and looked towards the hall, but Harry had already disappeared. "Don't mention this to him, alright? He's already worried about wandering around without knowing it. He doesn't need to know about him saying things."
"Part of the Otherworld now." Draco raked a hand through his hair. He seemed to see Neville for the first time. "I'm sorry, Blaise. I'll leave you be." He sighed and turned away.
"If you ever need any help…"
He threw a smile over his shoulder, though it did not touch his eyes. "Thank you, Blaise. I'll remember that." And with that Draco was gone, disappearing down the darkened hallway, chasing after Harry's errant feet.
Blaise swallowed hard and looked down at Neville, tracing the lines of his face with his eyes. "I love you." He said the words out loud, shaping them with his lips and wondering at their feel in his mouth.
"…love you too." The sleepy mumble stole his breath. Blaise blinked hard and tried not to squeeze the smaller boy into awareness.
"Good," he said and let his cheek rest against the sandy hair again. His heart calmed, slowing to beat in time with its twin pressed against his chest. He fell asleep, still holding Neville close.