Title: Split Sole
Author: faynia and stormypups
Pairing: Severus Snape/Harry Potter
Word Count: approx. 15,000
Warning: Non-magical AU, THIS PIECE OF FICTION CONTAINS SLASH M/M PAIRING
Disclaimer: Harry Potter and Severus Snape belong to JK Rowling, her publishers and the WB. No profit is being made from this piece of fiction.
Summary: Harry's technique was perfect. All he needed was passion.
A/N: Beta'd by lesyeuxverts, joanwilder and rakina, three of the most beautiful women on earth.
"I said we would meet in my office, Potter. Not meet and then let you drag me to God knows where."
Harry laughed. "We're not leaving the building, I promise."
"If you're taking me to a room full of people, I may never forgive you," Snape warned. "I've had enough of dealing with the public for one day."
"No people either," Harry promised. He slipped his hand into Snape's and gave it a quick squeeze before releasing it. "Trust me, all right?"
"I'm trying," he said in answer to Harry's plea.
Harry beamed up at him, before stopping in front of a door that led into the main theatre. He grasped both of Snape's wrists, thumbs settling over the thick vein there, stroking idly. "I finished it," he said excitedly.
Snape looked confused. "Finished what?"
"My solo!" Harry exclaimed with the widest smile Snape had ever seen. "The retelling of how Clara saves the Prince! It's the only part that isn't completely choreographed. It's...well...it's why I've been so busy recently."
"Show me," Snape said, his curiosity piqued.
Harry's eyes sparkled and he licked his lips, groping backwards for the door handle. "Yeah?"
"I assume that's why we're here," Snape said, chuckling. "Show me," he repeated, reaching past Harry to open the door, giving him a gentle shove. Harry stumbled backwards, teetering on the edge of the stairs, but instead of tumbling down to the next level of seats, he hopped down to the next step. "Show off."
"Only for you."
Snape rolled his eyes and made his way to the front row seats at center stage. "Impress me," he said, challenging Harry to do his best.
"You know, you're likely the only one ever to see this," Harry pointed out, trailing his hand along the railing lining the stage.
"Why work so hard on something no one else will ever see?"
Harry leaned back against the stage, crossing his legs at the ankle. "Because I don't want to make a fool of myself in the unlikely scenario that I will have to go on stage in Jonathan's place."
"You're an accomplished dancer when you stop thinking and just dance. Enough stalling, let me see what you can do," Snape said, nodding toward the stage.
Swallowing thickly, Harry hurried to the small flight of stairs leading up onto the stage. He skipped every other step in his haste, nearly tripping up the last one, before he stopped. He wouldn't do well if he kept running about like this. He'd fall on his arse like he always did, and he was better than that. Taking a deep breath, Harry squared his shoulders and strode across the stage with the intention of hitting the play button on the compact CD player and losing himself to his one-man audience for the next few minutes.
Deftly unlacing his street shoes, Harry chucked them off into the wings of the stage, wincing at the sores on his toes, before tugging out his worn ballet slippers. He realized his feet wouldn't be such a mess if he stopped practicing so hard, but knowing that didn't mean he would stop. Not now, especially since Snape wasn't mocking him and seemed genuinely interested in what he was about to do. He stepped into his split sole shoes and flexed his toes. Snape wouldn't have the patience for any other warm ups, and Harry felt they were unnecessary.
"Any day now would be appreciated."
Harry waved Snape off as he bent over at the waist in front of the CD player on the floor, glancing at the back of the CD to find the correct track. He could feel the strain of his muscles in the back of his legs at the stretch and tempered the grin that threatened to expose how much he was enjoying taking his time, when he already knew what the track number was to begin with.
"Has anyone ever told you that you're a horrible tease?" Snape asked tersely.
"Not in the last few months," Harry said, grinning at Snape from between his legs.
Snape couldn't seem to take his eyes from Harry's backside. "You have a matter of seconds to start dancing, or you will lose your window of opportunity."
"And if I don't?" Harry asked, straightening up and looking over his shoulder.
"Then you and I will be doing a wholly different kind of dancing," Snape said, his brow lifting suggestively.
"Tempting," Harry admitted, tapping the play button with a toe. Soft music played from the speakers around the stage and Harry winked in Snape's direction before moving across the stage in a jazz run and getting into position.
Snape sat back in the soft chair, folding his arms across his chest, looking at Harry as if challenging him to impress him. Harry exhaled sharply, miming holding someone around the waist loosely as his gaze focused on the center of the stage. If he screwed this up he wouldn't only feel like an idiot, Snape would be there to call him one as well. He could make that work, though. His gaze slid over to Snape as the music swelled and settled once more, and he gestured to an invisible Joleen to wait there, before he crossed the stage.
Locking eyes with Snape, his body soon flowed into the melody of the song as he re-enacted the fight with the mouse king from beginning to end. He jumped, kicking his legs out in a high step, miming sword fighting and gunfire as he leapt and twirled across the stage, stopping before the invisible gathering around him, grinning cockily, before dropping to the ground as he fought the mouse king himself, struggling to breathe. His legs kicked out in an elegant arch and he sprung to his feet, slipping off one shoe in the process, gliding to stage left and imitated tossing his shoe across the stage at the back of the enlarged mouse.
The music swallowed him as he finished his dance, crossing the stage to where he had started, with an adoring look for the girl who would be standing there if it were an actual performance.
When the music stopped, Harry turned to look expectantly at Snape. For a moment, he was disappointed when all Snape said was, "Well done," but when he saw the look on Snape's face, he realized that he was saying much more, just not with words. Practically beaming, Harry walked to the front of the stage and gave a little bow before walking down the stairs to join Snape who had risen to his feet.
"Well, what did you thi--"
Before Harry could even finish speaking, Snape had grabbed him and was kissing him in a way he never had before and Harry returned the kiss wholeheartedly. It was warm and soft, and Harry never wanted it to end.
Harry didn't immediately recognize the sound of a voice clearing itself, but by the time Snape pulled back, the sound registered with Harry.
He spun around quickly, eyes widening at the sight of Lavesoir standing on the edge of the stage.
"This is hardly discreet, Severus," Lavesoir said, frowning at the two of them.
Harry slowly moved back onto the stage, intent on picking up his bag again as he skirted around Lavesoir. He didn't want to leave, but he needed to be ready in case Snape told him to go.
"Leave it, Pierre," Snape warned, and looked over his shoulder; Harry couldn't see any hint of embarrassment or regret on the man's face. He stood next to his bag, looking at Snape in surprise.
"You are swapping spit with a man twenty years your junior in a public setting and you're telling me to 'leave it'?"
"You seem to be under the misconception that I am not the owner of this establishment and cannot do anything I wish on my own property," Snape said coldly. "However, I will grant that this was not the place for such a display and that I will be more careful in future. Was there anything else?"
Lavesoir rolled his eyes, before glancing over his shoulder at Harry. "Good job, Potter. If--God forbid--Jonathan can't perform in the next two weeks, then at least I know you're ready."
"Thanks?" Harry said, edging nervously towards the plush red curtains.
"Perhaps now would be a good time to go home," Lavesoir said, looking between the two men. "I'd rather you weren't a complete disaster on opening night."
Harry looked at Snape, who shrugged. "That is up to you, Potter."
Harry flushed, shaking his head. "I'll go, but first…" Harry dug around in his bag, shifting through the change of clothing and a few different shades of ballet shoes, before finding the pen he was looking for. He scurried down the steps off the stage to Snape's side and grasped his hand. Before the man could work up a protest, Harry scrawled his mobile number across the back of Snape's hand in red ink.
"Are we in secondary school?" Snape asked as Harry attempted to put the pen away.
"Oh, shut up," Harry grumbled.
Before he could leave, Snape grabbed his arm and plucked the pen out of his hand. He then turned Harry's hand over and scribbled his own number on his palm before handing him the pen. "Goodnight, Potter," he said, fingers ghosting over Harry's hand before turning to Lavesoir.
"Pierre, a word?"
Harry gathered his things and left the theatre, continually glancing at his palm and grinning, too afraid to even flex his hand before he could get home and write the number somewhere else.
"Harry! Harry, how's my make-up!"
Harry whirled around, nearly smearing the light rouge he was putting on his cheeks. Joleen was running towards him. The blue ribbon untied on her waist fluttered behind her as she hurried towards him. Harry grinned, taking her hand in his. "You look fine, although..." Harry wet his thumb and told her to close her right eye. He swiped his thumb across her eyelid a few times, collecting the light brown eyeshadow on his thumb. "You look like you hadn't slept," he explained.
"I haven't!" Joleen said excitedly. "I'm always a nervous wreck on opening night, and I swear I didn't sleep a wink last night."
Harry spun her around, grabbing at the thick satin ribbon and tying it behind her back. "You and me both."
Lavesoir entered the costume area, clapping his hands to get everyone's attention. Harry froze mid-knot, but when it was clear Lavesoir had nothing more to say than curtain time was in ten minutes, Harry proceeded to finish off the large bow, tugging it tight once to make sure it didn't come undone while Joleen was dancing.
As the curtain rose, Harry resisted the urge to search out Snape in the crowd. He knew he was out there somewhere and he couldn't afford to be distracted, trying to find him in the sea of people. He was just glad he didn't have to dance for the first ten minutes. It took long enough to acclimatise to the bright footlights lining the stage, coupled with the two spotlights up in the tech booth, without having to worry about tripping over someone and ruining the entire evening.
Joleen appeared nothing less than stunning as she took the stage, looking for the world like she was Clara at the Christmas party. Harry straightened his brown waistcoat, tugging at the white collared shirt beneath it, feeling rather ridiculous in it. His hair was gelled and combed down into some semblance of tidiness and he couldn't recall wearing a more starched pair of tan trousers, but the effect was there and he felt himself slipping silently into his role as Clara's beau, the one who would be turned over in favour of her nutcracker prince.
Of course, it wasn't the first time Harry had danced in front of people; he'd done it on numerous other occasions, but tonight was different. It was The Nutcracker, a classic by anyone's standard, and while his role wasn't major, he still felt the flutter of nerves in his stomach when it came his time to dance. The younger boys gathered around him as he prepared to lead them in the children's dance, his eyes shifting over to Joleen who was cooing over one of the dolls in the younger girl's arms.
Stomach twisting into ever increasing knots, Harry formed the peak of the circle to the front of the stage and began the dance as the music changed to a faster pace.
Severus stood at the back of the darkened theatre, his eyes following Harry's every move. He could have sat in any seat in the house, but he didn't want to be a distraction, so he stood far back from the stage. Overall, the performance of the entire company was stellar with only a few minor mistakes that the average audience member would never notice. He'd held his breath when Harry missed a step, but the dancer had quickly recovered and there was a small smile on Severus' face as he continued to move, not missing another beat.
Normally on opening night, he would be concerned solely with the whole performance and whether or not the reviews would be positive or negative. A negative review would mean a loss in revenue, but he was certain that would not be the case tonight. As the curtain closed, the crowd surged to their feet, clapping loudly during the curtain calls. Granted, many of the people there were related to or friends of someone in the company, but the reaction seemed similar across the board.
Smirking, Severus slipped out a side door and returned to his office, waiting for the crowds to disperse and for Lavesoir to finish his critique to the rest of the dancers. It would be at least an hour before he could seek Harry out, so he sought the familiar distraction of paperwork to keep him occupied. It didn't shock him when someone knocked lightly on the door before barging in without waiting for permission. Harry stumbled into the office, hair matted to his neck from sweat and softened gel and wearing a ridiculous smile. "Well? How'd we do?"
"You weren't horrible," Severus said, setting his pen on the desk. "I believe the lot of you will be able to fill the seats every night of the run, which means I'll get my investment back." He leaned back in his chair, an amused smile on his face. "Were you expecting praise and accolades? Roses at your feet, perhaps?"
"No, but a kiss would be appreciated for keeping your business afloat," Harry joked, hopping up onto the corner of Severus' desk.
Severus eyed Harry warily. "You're sweaty and that goop in your hair is a mess. Shower, and then perhaps I'll kiss you," he loftily answered.
Harry grinned and leaned across the desk, gripping the back of Severus' neck with one hand, pulling him closer. "Git."
Severus allowed Harry to kiss him for a few moments before pushing him away. "That's enough of that. Wash off the blasted make-up and shower and I'll give you a proper congratulatory kiss," he groused, grabbing a tissue from the box on his desk and wiping at his mouth.
"If you're congratulating me, I must have done well," Harry said, grinning impishly.
"Moderately well. You missed a step at one point, but I suppose I can't expect perfection," he told Harry.
"Careful, Snape, you're going to make my ego spiral out of control," Harry said, smirking.
"Your ego is already spiralling out of control, now remove yourself from my desk before you leave a stain."
Harry's eyes creased at the edges and his smirk dimmed. "My aunt showed up. I know I never really told you anything about my family, but...well, it was a big deal for me to see her there. It won't happen again though."
Severus looked at Harry in interest. "She won't come again, or you won't react in that manner if she does?"
"Neither, with the latter being the most likely," Harry responded with a lopsided grin.
Severus nodded. One day he would push him for more information about his aunt, but tonight wasn't about that. "So, do you plan on showering anytime soon, or should I come back later?" he asked, smirking.
"Are you going to take me out for a celebratory drink?" Harry asked, sliding off the desk.
"You're old enough to drink?" Severus asked with a straight face.
Harry leaned forward on his hands against the desk which brought his face closer to Severus. "If you're not nice, I might decide to plop myself into your lap and show you what a proper kiss is."
"You wouldn't!" Severus said, aghast.
"Wouldn't I?" Harry asked, grinning as he started slinking around the side of the desk. "Would you like to test your theory of what I would and would not do?"
"Don't you dare, Potter," Severus growled, pushing back from his desk.
Harry followed, stalking forward, until his knees brushed against Severus'. "Scared?"
"Appalled and more than a little disgusted," Severus said, cringing. "You'll be much more pleased with the results if you go and shower," he said, his voice dropping to a low purr.
"You're a cruel man, Severus Snape," Harry chided, pulling back. "And I think I might hate you."
"The feeling is mutual. Go and shower, brat. The sooner you do, the sooner we can attend to other celebratory activities."
"Does that mean you're finally going to put out?" Harry asked, grinning.
"Don't you want to join me?"
"I'm going, but you'd better make it worth my while."
"I think I can manage that, but you'll never know if you don't leave!"
Laughing, Harry left the office.
As the door closed, Severus grinned, already making plans for their private celebration.