Disclaimer: I do not own anything in the Potterverse. It all belongs to JKR and a bunch of other companies. I make no money or profit of any kind from this story.
A/N: And so! The much anticipated Chapter Three!!! I'm really pleased at how much feedback I've gotten! Especially since this isn't necessarily a main Slash Ship! Thank you, my lovely readers!!!
The next few days were some of the best in Harry's life. Baby shopping wasn't nearly as harrowing a task as he thought it would be. And his date with George was- perfect. The man had dressed in dark jeans and a black button up shirt and taken him to an upscale Italian restaurant where the food was divine. After dinner, they went to a late movie, an action film starring some American actor, that probably entertained George more than Harry, but was still very good. They finally retired to Harry's flat at nearly midnight and once again, fell asleep in each other's arms.
That became their routine. During the day, Harry spent time with his friends, and George slipped away to Merlin-knows-where- Harry couldn't get a straight answer out of him- and their nights were spent together, always at Harry's place. George slept better there, he said, and Harry slept better with George, so he had no complaints. They went out on a few more dates, going to clubs, and ice skating, and dinners… Before they knew it, it was Friday, December 15th, and they were getting ready for dinner at The Burrow.
"Don't stress about it…" Harry said, kissing him lightly, "I'll be there with you and- they're your family. Just remember that."
He sighed heavily. "Yeah, I know. Thanks."
"It's what I do," Harry said, "Do you want me to go first?"
George nodded and he disappeared into the fireplace, still preferring floo over apparation. He arrived at The Burrow and was greeted with hugs and slaps on the back and handshakes… The entire brood was there. Molly and Arthur, Bill and a very pregnant Fleur, Charlie, Percy and Penelope, Ron and Hermione, Andromeda and Teddy, Ginny and Neville… and when George arrived with a crack next to Harry, they all fell silent. Just when Harry thought George might flee, Molly burst into tears and grabbed him up in a tight hug.
"Oh, George! I'm so sorry! I only wanted to help you, but all I did was drive you away!" she blubbered.
"Mum… can't- breathe…" he gasped and she let him go.
Soon, George found himself being hugged by every single Weasley present, even Percy, plus Hermione. He finally put his hands up in surrender and, laughing, backed away from them. "Seriously, you guys… ever heard of 'killing with kindness'?"
Harry smiled, glad to see his surrogate family brought together again. He felt a tug on his sleeve and looked down to see Teddy reaching up for him. "You want up?"
The boy nodded.
"What's the magic word?" he asked.
"Pees!" Teddy exclaimed, bouncing up and down.
Harry laughed and pucked him up, placing him on his shoulders. Teddy giggled and squealed in excitement. "You like being up high?"
"Up! Up!" Teddy laughed.
"Harry… can we speak with you?" Molly said, approaching him with Arthur.
"Sure…" he said, following them into the kitchen. He shot George a confused look as he bounced Teddy on his shoulders.
"We just wanted to thank you," Arthur said when they were alone.
"Ron told us about how you spoke with George. And he seems to be doing so much better…" Molly added, tearing up again.
"He really just needed somebody to listen," Harry said, setting Teddy down, "Go get Uncle Ron, okay? I need to have a grown up talk."
"Kay!" Teddy said, running into the sitting room.
"That's how Professor Dumbledore used to get me to open up. He'd ask a few simple questions and then just sit and listen while I vented. It always made me feel better so.." he shrugged, "I didn't really do anything special."
"You did though! You were there for him when we- his own parents- didn't know what to do…" Molly said.
"It's true. We're really grateful. You've done more for this family than you can imagine and there's no way that we can ever repay you," Arthur stated.
Harry smiled. "You accepted me into your home and into your family when I had none of my own. That means more to me than anything."
Molly hugged him them, much the same way she'd hugged George, and kissed the top of his head. "I don't care what anybody says! As far as I'm concerned, you're as much my son as Ron and George and Bill-"
"He gets the idea, dear," Arthur said, chuckling, "You can stop suffocating him."
"Sorry… I'm just so happy," she said.
"You'll always have a place here, son," Arthur said, "Remember that."
"Yeah… I know," Harry choked, fighting back tears of his own.
"Well! We should probably get back to the family, then!" Arthur said, "Molly, dear, should we round them up for dinner?"
"Oh! Yes of course!" Molly said, falling instantly back into her usual self, "Come on, you lot! Go and wash up before the food gets cold!"
Harry grinned and headed up the stairs with the rest of them. Before he made it to the washroom, though, he was pulled into Ron's old room.
"What'd you guys talk about?" George asked.
"You. What else?" he said, grinning, "They just wanted to thank me for pulling you out of your depression, even if only a little."
"This is a lot easier than I thought it would be," George said, "It's almost like nothing's changed. Like I wasn't absent from their lives until a few moments ago."
"As I said, they're you family. Whether you like it or not," Harry said, "Now let's go wash up before everybody comes looking for us."
"Hold on a minute…" George said, grabbing him around the waist, "I have my own thanks to give."
He leaned down and kissed Harry languidly, taking his time in exploring every inch of his mouth, coaxing Harry to do the same and moaning when he felt the timid mimicking of his own actions. When they pulled apart, Harry smiled.
"What was that for?"
"For making me come here. I never realized how much I missed the chaos of my family," George replied.
"I'm glad you're happy and I'd love to continue this, but we really have to go back down or we'll be dead for sure," Harry said.
They washed as fast as they could and headed down to the dining room. Harry found himself seated between Ron and George and was very thankful for whoever left those two seats open. Dinner at The Burrow was just as it always is. Hectic. Perhaps more so with George there to encourage Teddy. Molly's cooking was as delicious as ever, far surpassing anything he'd eaten from a restaurant, and he was sure he'd gained twenty pounds by the end of it.
The conversation did turn to Fred at one point, and Harry reached his hand under the table to grasp George's. He seemed to take it all in stride, mostly laughing and smiling, but the way he squeezed Harry's hand made him think that he wasn't quite as composed as he seemed. So, Harry deliberately, but subtly, changed the subject to something less touchy: Quidditch, of course!
George snuch a small smile of gratitude to him and relaxed his grip on Harry's hand. He didn't let go, though.
After dinner, they went into the sitting room and were offered brandy. Harry had to hold back a sigh of relief when George opted for tea instead, and accepted a cup of tea himself. The topics centered around babies, thankfully, and the evening was spent laughing about the absurd baby names Bill had suggested and poking fun at Neville for having to deal with a hormonal Ginny.
To which Ginny responded with, "So, Harry… Hermione tells us you're seeing someone?"
He nearly choked on his tea at the abrupt change of subject. "Er… yeah. I am."
He was hounded with questions from all directions and he simply laughed and said, "I'm not telling you anything. You'll all get to meet him at Christmas."
"But, Harry! We're family, mate! Why won't you tell us?" Rom said, looking suspiciously like he was pouting.
"Because I want it to be a surprise," Harry replied, grinning, "Besides, we haven't been together for very long, so I don't want him to feel too overwhelmed."
"Do we know him?" Ginny asked.
Harry thought about it for a moment before shrugging and saying, "You could say that. But I'm not telling you anymore."
Molly smiled. "Does he make you happy?"
Harry nodded. "Happier than I can ever remember being."
George had to hide his smile behind his teacup.
"Then I can wait," Molly said.
Eventually, they all began to clear out, giving hugs and kisses and promising to get together soon. Harry had to pinkie-promise Teddy that he would spend the day with him on Monday before the little guy would leave. Finally, he was back at his flat, patiently waiting for George to arrive.
He waited nearly ten minutes before the man showed up, grinning even through unshed tears. Harry jumped to his feet, a worried look on his face. George laughed shakily. "I'm fine, really. It's just Mum, y'know?"
Harry smiled. "Yeah… I know. She's got some kind of special power, I swear."
George wiped furiously at his eyes. "I'm twenty-two years old! Who'd have thought I'd miss my mum and dad this much?"
Harry drew him into a hug. "I happen to think it's sweet. I like your softer side."
George wrapped his arms around him tightly. "Thanks for being there. I don't think I could've done that alone."
"I feel bed for keeping this from them," Harry said quietly.
"Would you rather we told them sooner?" George asked.
Harry shook his head. "I think it'll be worth it to see their faces…"
George laughed. "That'll be a good one. Maybe we should bring Creevey and his camera."
"That would be a photo for my mantle!" Harry said, laughing.
"Speaking of Dennis Creevey," George said, "Don't you have an interview tomorrow?"
"Mm-hmm…" Harry said, nuzzling his chest.
"Do you need me to leave before they get here?" George asked.
"No. You can stay. I want you to stay," he said, his voice muffled by the fabric of George's shirt.
George rested his cheek on the top of Harry's head. "Are you tired?"
"Not really," he sighed, "Just comfortable…"
"Don't you think it'd be more comfortable on the sofa?" George suggested.
Harry nodded, reluctantly letting go of him to walk to the sofa and sit down next to the man, curling into his side. "You were right. This is much better."
George placed an arm around him. "Told you."
In the next moment the television was on, broadcasting the local news. Before he realized, Harry had fallen asleep, feeling safe and warm in George's embrace. He woke up some time later to find George watching cartoons and smiled.
"Why didn't you wake me?" he yawned.
"You looked too adorable to wake," George replied, smirking.
"So… I guess maybe I'm a little tired," Harry said, "Do you want to go to bed?"
George nodded, switching off the television. "I'm beat…"
They fell asleep the same way they always did that night… completely entwined in each other. However, George's slumber was significantly less than peaceful, haunted by a familiar face…
Harry's sleep was interrupted later that night by an elbow to the nose. He woke up with a jolt of pain and sat up, fully alert and on the defensive. Until, that is, he heard his bedmate cry out in anguish. He turned to George to find him thrashing wildly, tangled in the blankets, and calling out for his fallen twin. He was covered in a sheen of sweat that mingled with tears, and Harry felt a pang of sadness for him.
"Fred! Freddy please… wake up…" George whimpered desperately, "No! It wasn't my fault! Not my fault… not- my fault… I'm sorry…"
Harry pulled the blankets away and tossed them aside, freeing George's legs. He pulled the man, who was still mumbling incoherently, into his arms, sitting against the headboard. He pushed George's sweat-soaked hair away from his forehead, placing a soft kiss on the exposed skin.
"George… you need to wake up," he said gently, rocking him a bit, "You're having a nightmare… it's just a dream, love. Please wake up?"
"I- no, I can't leave- Freddy…" George said, still submerged in his own mind.
"It's Harry… remember? I'm here with you, but you have to wake up," he said.
George woke with a start, still calling out for Fred.
"Shh… It's okay… you're safe," Harry said, making soothing noises in his ear.
George's only response was to turn in Harry's arms and sob brokenly into his chest. Harry held him like that for a long time, softly telling him that it was only a dream and that it was okay, that it would be alright. By the time George finally fell into a more tranquil slumber, the sun was beginning to come up. Harry sighed, giving George one last tender kiss and leaving the bed, covering him back up.
He took a long, relaxing shower, dressing in denim jeans and a dark green turtleneck, and set about cooking breakfast. Dennis and Rick were supposed to be there at eight o'clock in the morning and he figured that they would probably skip breakfast in their excitement. When everything was finished, he set it out on the table, placing stasis and warming charms on everything, and grabbed two mugs of coffee, heading into the bedroom.
When he found an empty bed waiting for him, he set the coffee on the end table and turned to search for his missing boyfriend, bumping into him in the process. "Good morning."
"Good morning…" George said, swooping down for a kiss.
"I thought you'd still be sleeping," Harry said.
"The bacon woke me up," George replied, grinning.
Harry laughed. "Of course it did. Honestly, would you be offended if I just started calling you Ron?"
George growled, tackling him to the bed.
"Should I take that as a yes?" he said.
George kissed him again, this time more thoroughly, coaxing Harry's lips to part with a teasing swipe of his tongue. He groaned when the younger man acquiesced, allowing him entry. George could taste the coffee on his tongue, mingling with a taste that was purely Harry, and found the combination to be pleasantly intoxicating. And when Harry's own tongue began responding in kind, he growled again, nearly losing his composure.
Harry pulled away first, breathing heavily. "As much as I love this- and I really, really do- we've got guests coming over soon."
George murmured some kind of acknowledgment and sat up, raking a hand through his damp hair.
"Here. I brought coffee," Harry said, handing him a cup.
He took it gratefully, drinking half of it in one gulp.
"Trust me… you'll need that once Dennis gets here," Harry stated, smirking.
"Just so you know," George said when the doorbell rang, "I fully intend to continue this once they've gone."
Harry blushed under the lustful gaze, hurrying to get the door. Although he felt he was ready, George would never take things further than kissing and the occasional round of necking. It was something that Harry found both endearing and eternally frustrating…
"Hiya, Harry!" Dennis said when he let them in.
"Hey, Dennis," he replied, "Rick."
"Mr. Potter," Rick said, nodding cordially.
"I told you to call me Harry, remember?" he stated, "I hope you're hungry, because I thought we could have some breakfast before we get started."
Dennis grinned. "I'm starved! I was too excited to eat earlier!"
Harry laughed. "I figured as much. What about you, Rick? Have you eaten?"
Rick chuckled abashedly. "No… I haven't."
"Good, because Harry always cooks enough for a small army," George said, coming up behind him.
"George? I didn't know you were going to be here…" Dennis said, looking slyly at Harry.
"Don't get any ideas. It's probably not what you're thinking," Harry said.
Dennis only smirked.
"Dennis never mentioned that you had a boyfriend…" Rick said, "Or that it was the infamous George Weasley."
"Rick, right?" George said, holding out his hand.
Rick took it, clasping it tightly. It was at that moment that Harry realized how similar in build the two were. Almost equal in height, with George only about inch taller and Rick being broader. He and Dennis shared an amused look.
"So, Rick…" George said as they sat down to eat, "Did you go to Hogwarts?"
"I actually studied abroad in America," he replied.
"That's pretty cool. What's it like in the stated?" George asked.
"Loud," Rick stated succinctly, making them laugh.
"He wasn't kidding, was he? You cooked all of this by yourself?" Dennis said, helping himself.
"Yeah… I've got stop overdoing it…" Harry said sheepishly.
"And you cooked all of this without magic…" Rick said, tucking into his own plate.
"I like doing things the muggle way. It's more rewarding in the end," Harry replied, shrugging, "And I actually find cooking kind of relaxing."
"And it's delicious! It seems that the Harry Potter you hear about in the tabloids isn't who we think he is," Rick said, chuckling.
"That's what I've been telling you!" Dennis exclaimed, "I wish you'd quit reading that drivel!"
Rick laughed. "I know, I know…"
Dennis sighed and shook his head. "So, Harry, are you and George living together, now?"
"Pretty much," he answered, "Oh… can we not mention this in the interview? We want to surprise the family."
Rick looked crestfallen, making Harry smile.
"I promise that after Christmas, you two can come back and do another exclusive interview all about my love life, if you want," he said, "But not until after Christmas."
Rick brightened up considerably. "Seriously? That would be great! I still can't believe you're helping me out like this."
"Harry's always helping people," George said with a secretive smile, "It's just what he does."
He blushed, but didn't protest. He knew it wouldn't change their minds any.
"It's almost like you've appointed us as your official publicity covers," Dennis said.
"I guess I kind of have," Harry stated, smiling at them, "I trust you two and I need people to finally write the truth and dispel all of these silly rumors."
"Well then, we should finish eating and get to the interview," Rick said, grinning.
When breakfast was finished, Harry instructed them to wait in the sitting room while he cleaned up. He was in the process of picking up the dirty dishes when he heard a shutter click. He looked up to see Dennis grinning at him.
"Pictures for the article," he explained before leaving Harry to his work.
Harry sighed and shook his head, imagining the reactions when people saw him doing mundane, daily tasks like every other normal person. He joined them a moment later, taking a seat on the sofa next to George while Rick and Dennis took the armchairs.
Rick set a tape recorder out on the table and Harry smirked.
"I see I'm not the only one who prefers some things the muggle way."
"More reliable than a Quick Quotes Quill," Rick responed.
Harry shuddered at the reminder. "Very true…"
Rick hit the record button and sat back…
The interview went smoothly. Rick stuck to asking about his current life and his plans for the future, never delving too far into his past. A couple of questions struck a sensitive chord in him, but George would always squeeze his hand, much the same way he had for him the previous night. The only time that Harry had gotten truly upset was when Rick asked the final question, about how he'd defeated Voldemort in the end. He took a few moments to calm himself and carefully calculate an answer.
He simply replied with, "I don't really like to talk about it. But I will tell you that a lot of people played a part in it. My friends, Ron, Hermione, Neville, Ginny, and Luna were really key components in both the overall outcome and my survival. As well as Narcissa Malfoy and Severus Snape, surprisingly. But that's all I'm willing to say at this time."
Rick took the vague answer happily and didn't press for any more information.
"You can expect the article to be published in next weeks issue," Ruck said as he and Dennis packed their things up, "Thanks again for this, Harry."
"It was no problem. It was actually kind of fun," Harry said.
"I'm glad you feel that way, because I'm not going to forget your promise," Rick said, grinning, "Expect a call from me after Christmas."
"I certainly hope to hear from you before then," Harry said, "I'd like to think we're friends."
"Of course!" Rick said, beaming.
"Well, Dennis, I guess that means I'll be seeing more of you," George said, "Hopefully we won't be so ignored next time."
Harry laughed. "Don't be so dramatic. It was an interview."
"I was still ignored," George huffed.
"I'll make it up to you later, okay?" Harry purred into his ear, kissing his cheek.
George grinned and immediately began behaving, making Harry laugh again.
Dennis and Rick exchanged a look before standing. "Well, we still have a lot of work to do, so we'll just head out," Rick said.
Harry blushed lightly. "You don't have to leave!"
"We have an article to write and I still have to develop these pictures," Dennis said, pulling his jacket on, "And plus… well- we kind of had a lunch date planned." It was Dennis' turn to blush.
Harry smiled. "I guess it can't be helped, then. I'll see you both soon, I hope?"
They nodded and left him alone with George.
"So, about making it up to me…" George said coming up behind him and wrapping his arms around the slender shoulders of his boyfriend.
Harry chuckled. "I said later."
"It is later…" George purred, nuzzling the top of Harry's head and inhaling the refreshing scent of his shampoo.
Harry turned in the embrace to place a gentle, chaste kiss on George's lips. "Then why don't we reconvene to the bedroom?"
George growled his approval of this idea, practically pulling Harry through the flat. As soon as they reached their room, the ginger haired man pushed him onto the bed, crawling on top of him slowly. He reveled in the flushed face and heavy breathing of his young lover, a feral grin splitting his usually playful expression.
Harry's eyes widened at how animalistic George appeared and he was surprised when he felt himself instantly harden. "George…" he gasped, allowing his head to drop back onto the pillows and arching his back in a silent plea to be touched.
"Yes, Harry?" George replied, merely hovering over him.
"Please…" he breathed.
"Do you want something?" George asked.
"Merlin's- you know what I want!" Harry exclaimed, pulling the man down to kiss him hard, "I want you to kiss me, touch me, anything. Just- quit teasing me!"
George smirked. "As you wish…"
He leaned in to attach his mouth to Harry's neck, sucking and biting lightly, making him moan and gasp. At the same time, he slid a hand under the young wizard's shirt, softly skimming his nails up his side before his fingers found the little hardened nubs they'd been seeking. He flicked and pinched and twisted, surprised to find that Harry seemed to enjoy the particularly rough treatment and reveling in the knowledge.
Harry thought that he was going to die for certain. Everything that George did seemed to be some kind of torture, specially designed to drive him mad. He moaned and mewled, writhing beneath his boyfriend, gasping and babbling for more… George's mouth kept moving from his neck to his ear to his mouth and back, never staying in one place too long, never giving him the time to catch his breath. At the same time his hand moved from the right to the left, alternating hard and soft, roughly twisting, then barely touching at all. Again, he arched, this time making sure to grind their straining erections together.
George threw his head back, hissing at the sudden stimulation. "Fuck, Harry!"
"George…" he gasped, "Please hurry… Do something! I need more…"
"What do you want?" George asked, smirking when Harry whimpered desperately.
"I want- need to…" he blushed prettily, "I need to come…"
It was barely a whisper, but George heard it and groaned huskily, kissing him fiercely. His hand slipped out from under Harry's shirt, moving down to undo his trousers. He pulled the younger man's erection from his pants, wrapping his hand firmly around the average sized shaft.
"Oh God! Fuck- George… Ah- d- don't…" Harry cried out when he felt the large, calloused hand touch him. He was blushing madly, embarrassed at the thought of being touched in a place he'd only ever touched himself, and at being looked at in such a way. Although, to his shock, the shame seemed to heighten his arousal. He mewled and whimpered when the hand began to stroke him, squeezing none too gently.
"Do you really want me to stop?" George asked, dropping his voice an octave.
Harry shut his eyes tightly and shook his head, panting harshly, arching into the touch. "N- no… don't stop… so close… faster, please!"
George grinned, speeding his hand's movements until Harry was nearly screaming. Moments later and Harry came, back arching almost painfully, his head thrown back, crying George's name and spraying his seed over his own chest and face. He fell back onto the bed limply, breathless, and tried to calm his rapid heartbeat.
George leaned in to lick some of the milky white substance from his lover's cheek and kissed him, sharing his own taste. Harry moaned quietly at the salty sweetness of the kiss.
"That was… great," he said when George pulled away, opening his green eyes lazily, "Better than great, actually. What's better than great?"
"Fantastic? Spectacular? Awesome? Earth- shattering?" George suggested, smirking.
"Mmm… yeah. All of those," he replied, smiling serenely.
George cast a quick cleaning charm before lying down next to Harry, pulling him into his arms. The dark-haired wizard gasped when he felt the obvious arousal pressing into his backside. Then a wicked grin spread across his face and he pushed himself backward, grinding his hips back and delighting in the sharp intake of breath he heard behind him.
"Harry… stop…" George gasped.
"I hardly think that I've made it up to you, yet," he purred, turning in the embrace and smirking.
"Trust me… you have," George answered, kissing his forehead.
Harry's smirk turned into a frown of confusion. "But- you haven't even…"
The red head smiled warmly. "It's fine. You don't have to do anything that you don't want to."
"I want to…" Harry said softly, reaching down to stroke him through his jeans.
His confusion grew exponentially when George suddenly sat up and gently disentangled himself from him. "I'm going to- take a shower." Without another word, George disappeared into the bathroom, leaving a stunned, confused, and rather hurt Harry to stare after him. However, the more he thought about it, the more certain he became that there was something more to George's constant reserve, that there was something deeper that the man wasn't telling him. And he made a silent vow to break through whatever barriers his boyfriend and lover had erected around himself.
SPECIAL ALERT!!! Sneak Preview of Chapter Four NOW AVAILABLE on my Yahoo!Group! Go to my Profile Page and you will find a link to it! There are tons of other features, as well: Never-Before-Read stories that will only be available through the group, Reader Polls and Input, E-Mail Notifications of updated stories, Fanart done by myself and the other moderator, PLUS you can now upload your own stories! You can join with ANY email address! Doesn't have to be yahoo. So come and join! You won't be disappointed!