Based on PENGUiN2006MASTER's Blaise/Harry challenge (see Slash Challenge! In stories to find full terms of story). Not quite achieved, but I didn't think a full on sex scene would fit this story.

All recognisable characters and plots are not my property, I am making no profit on this and intend no copyright infringement.


He was the quiet Slytherin to most people, the ones who even cared to notice. He stayed silent when the other Slytherins were bragging about the Dark Lord, he sat in the shadows and watched with quiet approval as Draco led them to Harry's side. He didn't speak up in class, even when he knew the answers, he didn't join in Quidditch even though he was pretty decent on a broom. He didn't make friends, even though a lot of the Slytherins talked to him. Outside of Slytherin, only a handful of people could match his name to his face, even though both were unique. Most of those that could were the prefects for his year whose job it was to know these things.

Harry guessed that's what drew him to Blaise in the first place. His calm, watchful silence, compared with the way he could glide into and out of a room without notice. Harry's jealousy of his ability battled daily with his genuine appreciation of the other man, and if it hadn't been for Blaise, he was sure he could have ended up doing something stupid. As it was, Blaise stepped forward, exactly when he was needed.

"You've been watching me."

"I have."


"I don't know."

Maybe, Harry thought privately as they sat together in the library, the reason he liked him so much was their sameness. Neither of them liked talking, and when they were together, neither of them needed to talk. They were happy to spend time, sometimes hours, sitting in a distant, forgotten part of the library. Sometimes they would study, their exams coming upon them quickly. Without Ron there to distract him, or Hermione to intimidate and irritate him, Harry got his work done quite quickly. Other times they would go outside, go for walks in companionable silence. Soon Harry realised that somewhere between silences, they'd become something resembling friends.

Of course, that was where things got complicated. Friends noticed things about their other friends that normally people wouldn't. Especially when one friend was Hermione "know it all" Granger. Even locked at the lips with Ron as she so often was, Hermione still had time to notice things like her other best friend disappearing off for hours at a time with Blaise Zabini. And even when he had fought beside Draco Malfoy, Ron still had a lot to say about 

Gryffindors being friends with Slytherins. The ensuing row drove Harry out in a childish huff, storming without realising it, to their little corner of the library.

Blaise, not surprisingly, was there with his nose in a book. Harry sometimes wondered if he lived in here; whenever he needed him, he just had to come here. He just had to flop into a seat across the table from him, smile at him and open a book. This time, however, he didn't get a chance. Blaise took one look at him, put his book down, and opened his arms for an uncharacteristic, but much needed hug.

"What happened, Harry?" He murmured softly. Harry whimpered and snuggled further into his arms, an action quite impeded by the table but comforting none-the-less.

"Ron didn't like that I was friends with you. We had a row in the middle of the Common Room."

"Ron has a problem with me? He doesn't even know me." Blaise protested in a voice that projected hurt, even despite the seeming calm. Harry tightened his grip and looked up at him, eyes blazing fiercely.

"No, he doesn't. He had no right to judge you based on your House, especially since Malfoy already showed that Ron was wrong. He didn't like me saying that though." Harry's gaze dropped, teeth coming out to nibble on his lip.

"You stuck up for me to Ron?" Blaise asked, sounding surprised and grateful. This time the joy in his voice was unconcealed. Harry smiled tentatively.

"You're my friend, Blaise, and he'll have to get used to that. I don't let people bad-mouth my friends."

Blaise just smiled anyway.

Harry was right, Ron did just get used to it. He even caved in to Hermione's pressuring and came to sit with them at the Library. Harry missed their private time together, but they had plenty of that as well, and really, he'd missed his friends since they'd started a relationship. It was that feeling of being a third wheel that had driven him to Blaise in the first place.

However, this new happiness was marred by something completely unexpected. Somehow after their little encounter in the library that day, Harry had developed a craving for Blaise's hugs. He didn't dare ask for one, but he found himself imagining, at odd intervals, being held by him once more. Soon he began obsessing about it, trying to think up new ways to get another hug from the boy. As expected, Blaise noticed this occupation eventually, eyeing Harry suspiciously. It didn't take long for Blaise to bring it up. Embarrassed and defensive, Harry blew up at him and stormed off in a huff, knowing even as he did it that he was being silly – and that Blaise wouldn't let him just go.

As expected, by the time Harry reached the lake, Blaise was only a little way behind him.

"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to shout. I just..."

"It's alright, Harry. Why don't you tell me what's wrong?"

"I can't. I just... Could you hold me?"

Warm arms wrapped around him almost instantly, cradling him against a surprisingly broad chest – against his scrawny frame, at least. Blaise's chin came to rest on his head and he sighed softly. "If you wanted a hug, Harry, all you had to do was ask."

"And you'd have hugged me?" Harry turned around to look up at him. "If I asked?"

"Of course I would. Anything you ask."

"Anything?" Harry's eyes dropped to Blaise's lips, finally admitting to himself what he'd been hiding all along. "And if I asked you to kiss me?"

"You don't need to ask." Blaise murmured, each syllable brushing across his lips, followed by the dry brush of Blaise's own lips.

Surprisingly, Harry later reflected, Blaise was loud in bed. All the words he kept inside during the day spilled out of him at night in a litany of love and pleasure and begging. As Harry's kisses dipped lower, Blaise's moans grew higher. As Harry breached him with fingers, with cock (with his tongue even, on one memorable occasion) Blaise's voice spiralled into indistinguishable gibbering, interspersed with Harry's name. When he came, usually only a short time after Harry had begun the harder faster thrusts that he so begged for, his climax was a crescendo of noise as much as pulsating wet heat and pleasure. Not that Harry had any right to call him on it, when they made love, both men were free to be as loud as possible and both enjoyed the experience.

But still, it was the quiet that Harry loved best. Both of them quiet, together.