Chapter Six: You can't hide the truth forever
An: He He. I'm sitting here giggling to myself. This is a fun chapter. And the last, so hope you enjoy.
His bottle green eye peeked out through a reluctant lid. Harry held in a groan as he slowly regained consciousness. He shut the lid quickly, willing the sun to go down. Last night was the most decent rest he got since he started this trip and he was not ready for it to end. There was no cold hard floors or sleeping in his jeans, t-shirt and sneakers. He had a proper sleep which was much preferred to the day that lay a head of him. He snuggled closer to the pillow reluctant to get up and face it just yet.
Only the pillow wasn't as comfortable as he thought. Was that fur? Come to think of it, this pillow did have some unusual bumps in it. And it was curiously warm. Harry wiggled his head experimentally. His brain, which was not fully warmed up yet, told him it was a good idea. His nose met something warm and incredibly smooth. Without thinking he rubbed against it. As he began to wake more he realized his arm was around a large soft figure. He had his arm around someone.
Harry's brain made the connects sooner then he liked. He immediately began to pull his arm away from the snoring blonde beside him, but there was a small problem. He couldn't move. His hand was trapped under Malfoy's stomach. Harry was fully awake now and he removed his leg from the other man's, while scooting as far back as his snared appendage would allow. It wasn't far at all. Harry could still feel the warmth of Malfoy's skin on his chest.
He resisted the urge to groan because the last thing he needed was to wake the slumbering slytherin. Malfoy would tease him for weeks. Not to mention the hangover he was going to be faced with. He had to untangle his arm with out disturbing the other man. Harry hoped he was a heavy sleeper. He tugged his hand only to have the blonde mumble and shift his position. Malfoy kicked his legs and with them pulled the blanket they shared off Harry.
However the Gryffindor was to distracted to notice. He wanted to leave before the man woke up. He used his free hand to push on Malfoy's side, lifting him off the bed enough for him to remove his arm. He rubbed at it, trying to get the feeling back and glanced at the clock. It was nearly eleven. Bob and Denice must be down stairs. He was glad they let them sleep.
Last night left him aching for bed. He helped pick up the trash, empty bottles and washing all the dishes before saying good night to Denice and her brother. Bob passed out from exhaustion on the couch an hour before. They merrily waved to him, still wired and excited at seeing each other for the first time in years. He went upstairs and managed to change before fell into bed and let sleep take him.
Harry was surprised when he was met with silence downstairs. He traveled to the kitchen, the living room and the back yard before he gave up. The couple must still be asleep. Harry searched the kitchen cupboard's until he found a pop tart and turned the telly on in the living room. For once he let himself relax. He didn't think about anything except what the people on t.v. were saying. An hour later Bob joined him, then soon after Denice. Her hair stuck out on all directions and she groaned when Bob opened the curtains.
" Did you have a nice talk with your brother? He get to the hotel alright? You guys were up late, huh?" He asked chuckling.
She mumbled and let her head fall on the couch.
" I warn her every time she drinks. She always regrets it in the morning. She's the biggest light weight I ever met." Bob informed Harry.
" At least I'm not still asleep." She defended herself. Her eyes still closed.
Harry sent a worried glance to the stairs, his mind drifting to Malfoy the first time since he left the blonde in the room.
" Now. Now. Honey, be nice." Bob said, patting her leg. She growled at him.
" Whose hungry?" The pop tart Harry had earlier seemed like decades ago. He helped Bob make brunch, while Denice took some pills and lots of water. They left her alone and when she came in, following the smell of bacon, Harry was happy to see her smiling. They ate in a comfortable silence, only disturbed by the door bell.
Bob got up and his surprised voice from the hall had Denice on her feet in an instant. Harry followed. He was met with the sight of a short elderly man with long grey hair and a hand full of paper's, shoving his way past a wide eyed Bob.
" I've found a pattern. I even think I have a location, but I can't go alone. I thought of you immediately. Of course." The man spoke fast and had a slight lisp, making him seem more like an excited child then an old man.
" What? Why me? But... we've only talked three times." Bob was saying. He shut the front door slowly.
The old man gave him a blank look.
" I don't even know your first name." Bob continued.
" It's Belkin. My friends call me Belk. Anyway, I've been researching this since it started, four months ago. Haven't you been wondering what's been happening in this town? The signs are all here. I know what happened to those girls. "
" I thought it started three months ago." Malfoy said announcing his presence. Harry frowned. He stiffened when Malfoy came and stood next to him. His hair was wet and he had jeans and grey shirt on, making him seem too good for the casual clothes. Did he remember last night?
" The disappearances, yes, but the whole thing started four months maybe even earlier."
" What are you talking about?" Bob asked.
" I'm talking about the supernatural. I'm talking about wizards and spells. Bob, I'm talking about real life, magic."
Harry held his breath. This stranger just waltzed in and had the potential to destroyed everything with that one sentence. The whole house was dead silent while everyone processed the information. Bob liked to believe that there are forces at work that people don't understand, the writer in him gave him no choice, but he had a hard time swallowing this information. He could sense his wife's discontent next to him. Denice knew a crack pot when she saw one. He was entertaining at first but now she just wanted this man out of her house.
Malfoy's whole body was tense next to Harry. It seemed to be vibrating with nervous energy. Harry knew he was no better. How could this old man figure it out? And why did he bring the news here.
" Alright, Dr. Johnson. I think it's time for you to go now." Bob's gentle tone was accompanied with a reassuring but firm hand on the old man's shoulder. He guided him to the door.
" I know it sounds absurd, but you must trust me. You must listen. I think there is danger here." He didn't fight Bob as the man opened the door and lead him through it, but he argued the whole way out.
" Please. I can help. I thought you would understand." Guilt sliced through Bob. He took pity on the man. It must be hard getting older and having no one. If he had to come to a virtual stranger with his news.
" "Look, I write fiction, Mr. Jo....Belkin. It's not real."
" But what if could be. What if it is?" He argued. Bob hesitated, his hand on the door.
" I sorry." Denice said behind Bob as she shut the old professor out once and for all. A part of Harry hated watching the man's hope die in his eyes, but it was dangerous for him to be nosing around.
" That was kind of sad." Denice said. " Poor man."
" Who was he?" She continued.
" Remember the source I told you about?"
" For your book?"
" Yeah, that was him. I knew he was eccentric but... wow." he drifted off, not needing to finish. The unexpected visitor left everyone a little depressed. They stood in the hall avoiding each other's glances. Bob jumped when Denice suddenly clapped her hands. The sound echoed off the walls.
"Let's forget about this.... bizarre event. You do met the weirdest people, Bob. Any way there's nothing you can do now. He's sad, but we are still celebrating. How about ice cream? Jack since you're dressed, why don't you come with me. You can tell me what Alex's favorite flavor is."
Malfoy nodded and waited for her to grabbed her purse and shoes before walking out the door with her. Denice wanted him alone. She had seen the way he was watching Alex last night. He was holding back something. And Alex must have picked up on it, which was what was putting a strain on their relationship. Happy with her self for figuring it out and determined to convince Jack he was going to lose Alex if he didn't do something soon. She held back a smirk as he opened his car door. She was going to fix their relationship yet.
Harry took his place on the couch and resumed watching the telly. But this time his mind wasn't on the talking dog barking on the screen. He was thinking of what the old man said. Could he have really figured it out? Maybe they were too hasty throwing him out.
Harry knew one thing for sure. He needed to talk to that man again. It would be better if he could leave him out of it, but Harry didn't have any other leads. Dr. Johnson was his best bet at figuring out what was happening in this town. He would feel loads better if he had some information for the ministry when he got to leave here. He and Malfoy could visit the old man tomorrow.
Harry looked up.
" There's a call for you."
Harry frowned, but took the phone from his hands. Bob left the room.
"Hello?" He said tentatively into the yellow receiver.
" Harry?" Relief flooded through Harry's body.
" It's good to hear your voice."
" Is the muggle okay? I wasn't sure if the spell I used would work so far away. But I wasn't expecting him to answer and I didn't know what name you'd used."
" He's fine. I think." He made a mental note to check on him afterwards.
" Harry, we've figured it out. I can't talk about it over the phone. But we're about to make our move and I didn't want you to wait longer then you had to. Are you alright?"
A throat cleared somewhere over the line and Kingsley continued before Harry could answer.
" We'll be there to pick you and Auror Malfoy up shortly. The minister wants us to take caution. So you'll have to wait." He sounded slightly bitter, but Harry was still caught on the word Auror that preceded Malfoy's name.
" Wait, what?....Auror Malfoy?" He stuttered, unable to wrap his head around things.
" Yes. I assumed he told you. I mean he was asked not to....but when you were attacked.... Harry, why do you think he was with you?" Kingsley asked, concern clear in his voice.
" I....don't...I never thought about it." He finished lamely. Kingsley knew Harry better then that, but he didn't push the subject. It might have had to do with the clearing voice in the room.
" Anyway, we'll be there soon." He hesitated before continuing.
" Are you alright Harry?" Harry nodded before he realized Kingsley couldn't see him.
" Yes. That sounds fine. Oh, wait there was an old muggle man, a professor. He knew about the disappearances."
" How do.... Alright, Potter we'll be there as soon as this is over." Kingsley informed him.
"See you soon." Harry clicked the phone off. And started walking. His mind not paying attention to where his feet were taking him.
Malfoy. An Auror.
How could he have not known? He would have heard something back at the minisrty. Surely having an ex-death eater working there would have caused some sort of gossip.
He had not once questioned Malfoy's sudden appearance on the train or how Kingsley knew about him. All this time he assumed Malfoy was an innocent bystander who got caught up in this mess. He'd felt guilty about putting the other man in this potion. That should have been his first clue. Since when was Malfoy ever innocent. Harry felt the room spinning.
The whole time, well part of the time anyway, he thought the other man had changed, that maybe he had feelings for him. But it was all a lie. Malfoy was only doing his job. Kingsley didn't think he could do this, so he sent Malfoy to look after him. How could he have been so naive?
Anger rushed through his veins, feeding his thoughts. Not only did his friend think he was incompetent, but he had sent his old rival to baby sit him. No wonder Malfoy had been so irritated. He really didn't want to be here.
Harry's anger transformed into sadness and embarrassment before he could do anything. He had let his guard down. He was willing to open up to the blonde. And all the while the other man was just stringing him along. Harry felt like he just lost something and it only hurt him more to realize he'd never had it to begin with. Malfoy was an even better actor then he thought. It must have been easier to play along then tell Harry the truth.
This all explained why he was always pulling away. The blonde didn't feel anything for him. He had been pretending, using Harry's feelings against him. To control him. He felt the blood rise to his cheeks when he thought of the way he tried to make Malfoy seem better then he was. He felt so stupid. At least they hadn't done anything more.
Just then the object of his thoughts appeared before him.
He and Denice returned with the ice cream. Harry tried to smile but he knew it wasn't fooling any one. Malfoy must have thought he was still upset from earlier. He grabbed Harry's arm and pulled him into the kitchen. As soon as they set the dessert down. Bob ordered them to the living room to chose a movie while he and Denice made Sundays. Almost as an after thought Harry noted Bob seemed un-harmed by what-ever Kingsley did to him.
He numbly followed after the blonde. He wanted to punch him in the nose. They stopped in the living room and found the collection of dvd's. Malfoy at once began sorting through them.
" What about..." He stopped short, letting the movie in his hand drop on the case, when he saw Harry's mood was still sour. A concerned look crossed his feature's as he approached the brunette.
" What's wrong?" He was suddenly too close. Invading Harry's space. The brunette wanted to back up, but he couldn't.
" Potter." And suddenly he was leaning in, closer then before.
" Do you think it's a good idea to keep calling me that?" He asked, desperate to change the subject. Anything to get Malfoy to stop looking at him like that. He couldn't handle it after what he'd just learned.
The blonde rolled his eyes. " Fine, what would you like me to call you, then?" He said moving in more. Harry fought the urge to close his eyes. Malfoy's voice was so soft, almost gentle.
" Sweetheart?" His lips descended on Harry's skin, causing him to jump.
" Darling?" Goosebumps were spreading like wildfire across Harry's neck. Every breath of Malfoy's words resulted in a shiver down his spine. He tried to swallow. Malfoy saw the movement in his throat and placed a kiss there.
"I know, how about..... Harry." He whispered, as if it were some forbidden word. Harry felt his soft lips move up his chin, getting dangerously close to his mouth. Without thinking of the repercussions Harry spoke.
" Do you work for the ministry?"
Malfoy froze in place. His mouth still centimeters form Harry's own. In slow motion he pulled back, giving Harry the distance he'd wanted.
" What?" It was nearly a whisper but it couldn't have been louder if Malfoy had shout it in his ear. The guilt and panic in his tone told Harry all he needed to know. As if that weren't enough the next sequence of events happened so fast Harry barely had time to register them.
Bob and Denice chose that moment to enter the room. They stilled upon seeing the men's distraught faces and would have returned to the kitchen, if the front window hadn't blown out. Glass flew from the bent frame and shredded clothes and skin as it made it's way to the floor. Malfoy yelled something and Harry watched as Denice and Bob crumpled to the floor, the ice cream falling from their limp hands. His last image was of Malfoy being sent flying into the case that held the dvd's, before the world went dark.
He woke to the sound of muted voices. His head was pounding and he was astonished to find his glasses still on his face. His hands were bound behind his back and his feet were held togther with a rope. He struggled slightly only to tell how strong the rope was, but his movement caused a tall cloaked figure, who previously had been standing in the background, to turn and face him. The man said something to a hunched woman and she scurried away. He walked with a limp, Harry noted as the stranger made his way closer. He fought the panic at not being able to defend himself from this man.
"AHH, we meet at last, Harry Potter." His voice was laced with true excitement and something far darker.
Harry couldn't help but be reminded of the man he had killed years before, Voldemort. The man in front of him now was dressed in long black robes. He was tall with a stretched, gaunt face. But it was distorted into an odd shape. And Harry couldn't help but stare. He looked burnt, as if the flames of hell had licked his face as he clawed out of the pit. His nose was, really just an accumulation of soft wrinkled skin. Half of his mouth didn't move as he spoke, and yet his words came out lacking any sign of a slur or impediment.
His eyes were green, but not the bright and lively green that made up Harry's. No, they were a dark almost black green, showing the world a glimpse of the monster inside. Harry had to finally look away.
" Who are you?" Harry asked, trying to shake the bad feeling that he already knew what was coming.
" Oh, My apologizes. My name is Grelfick. Though most people just call me Grel." His tone was light, almost jokingly. As if they were having a normal conversation. As if Harry was not tied up in front of him.
" And I've been waiting for you. I must admit I thought they'd send you sooner. You are the best after all." He said with a glint in his eye that could be mistaken for pride.
But Harry was too busy trying to figure out what the man was talking about to notice. So far all he knew was nothing, except the spy in the ministry must be working for this man. He was the reason Kingsley was so worried. Which made the man before him very dangerous.
" I guess my earlier actions did not warrant the presence of the great Harry Potter. So I sent my faithful servant there to make it happen." Grelfick said with enthusiasm. Ready to explain his whole plan to Harry, proving he was truly an evil genus.
" Wait," Harry said as his mind began piecing it together. Grelfick looked disappointed at being interrupted, but did not stop Harry's revelation.
" You did all this, the girls, the Aurors, to get me here." At this he heard a snort and what sounded like a muttered " Figures," from behind him. He tried to look in that direction but he couldn't turn around. At least he knew Malfoy was alive.
" Yes," Grelfick said this time it was clear the pride he felt was for his plan. " I see now why you are the best."
" That's so... lame." Harry said, regretting his words at the look of rage on Grelfick's face. Harry had almost forgotten he was dangerous.
"How dare you! I am more evil then you will ever know. I can kill you right now. You're lives are in my hands. And you dare stand there and make snide remarks."
At this he shot a pointed look in Malfoy's direction. It was the first time since he spoke that he gave any acknowledgment of the other man's presence. The blonde felt a chill run through him as the cold demon eye's fixed on him. Grelfick turned his attention back to Harry.
" Lame," he muttered, disgusted with the very word. " I got you here didn't I? You, the famous Harry Potter and his side kick. Kneeling at my feet." At the reminder that he was in control, Grelfick seemed to relax. He took a breath and rolled his neck, relieving the last signs of tension. He shot a quick glance over his shoulder to something Harry couldn't see.
He became playful again.
" It's a shame, really. You young folk, nowadays, have no patients." He shook his head disapprovingly.
" But don't worry. We have time. No need to rush this. I've been waiting and I'm going to make it last." He seemed to be talking to himself as much as the boys.
"But, it's understandable. I mean, it's a big day. I am a bit anxious myself. Much to do." He was getting excited again. His contorted lips stretched into a one-sided smile. Another quick glance behind him.
" It does require some what of an introduction, however. So if you wish for the boy to remain alive," He jerked his head in Malfoy's direction "I suggest you start showing me the respect I deserve. Sit there and shut-up. It's story time."
" I'll take you're silence as acceptance of my terms." Harry wanted to defy him, but he stayed silent for Malfoy's sake.
" When I first heard of you in the papers, I knew. You were the one. I worked hard to get all my plans ready. I was about to make my move when she came into my life. Little vixen, she was." As his eyes glazed over and half his mouth formed a contorted smile, Harry used the opportunity to twist around hard and look at Malfoy. He was breathing funny and his lip was bleeding, but he seemed other wise un-harmed. Harry tried to let him know it was going to be alright, but Grelfick noticed his position and wrapped a bony hand around his shoulder, forcing him back around.
" If he's too much of a distraction for you I could remove him."
Harry bit his lip and shook his head.
" Good. Now as fun as she was, she was also a devil. And not the good kind. Cursed me, then ran off with a car salesmen. I mean really, who does that? Wasn't even a witch so naturally her spell was botched up." His eyes shifted and his head turned slightly as if he were going to turn around, but stopped himself. Harry tried to look at what ever had half the man's attetion, but there was nothing but darkness beyond him.
" Let me tell you, that put a hamper of my plans. Had to re-think everything. I had to be creative. I worked from here, slowly gathering minions. Earning their trust, their loyalty. It's not as simple as they make it look on t.v., you know."
Harry briefly wondered if this was some kind of joke. Surely this man couldn't be serious.
" But I did. Had myself a whole legin. And then came the time came for them to show their loyalty and do know what they did?" Harry could see the anger coming off him in waves. The tall marred man was practically seething.
" They fled, like sheep from a wolf! Just up and left! All but two. And I couldn't use them. I needed more then that. So they got me more. Every month for two years I fed. Built my strength up. Finally came the time when I could go out myself. But because of this silly curse, only in pure darkness could I venture out. Then, plot twist!"
Grel became more animated, using gestures with his crinkled skinned hands. He was pacing back and forth, his robe whipping around his lean figure. Harry tried to loosen the bindings around his wrists, but they gave no slack.
" She came back. Complaining about how hard it was without me. And she was so sorry. That they needed me. Of course I didn't believe her at first, but as I said she was a vixen." He sighed wistfully and Harry held back the urge to vomit as the odor of rotting bacon and old molded cheese hit his face.
" 'Course she had another surprise for me." And then, as if he was in the background waiting for the perfect line to enter on, Max came running from the dark behind Grel.
" Daddy!" He yelled, before jumping into the deformed man's arms. Harry was sure the older villain was going to topple over from the extra weight. Even if he had, Harry wouldn't have been able to take advantage of the distraction. He was stunned at the sight of the little boy.
Cindy appeared moments later, leisurely walking towards her two boys. A shocked and slightly disgusted Harry watched as she placed a kiss on the half melted face of the man holding nim captive.
They seemed out of place, making Harry feel like once more this wasn't really happening. Little, innocent Max and sweet generous Cindy standing with an evil murderous Cod, like a warped family portrait. Where the father was ruined when something spilled and melted his image. He couldn't imagine how these good people fell in with this monster.
Cindy turned and looked at him for the first time. She bit her lip and apologized as if she just stepped on his toe and not that her husband kidnaped them and planned to kill them.
Harry gaped at her. Grel smiled, his twisted smile.
" Only that you got some one that hot." Came a voice from behind Harry. The brunette flinched, hoping the presence of his family would quell Grel's anger at the idiot blonde. No such luck. The taller man set his child down and strode out of Harry's vision. Behind him Malfoy grunted and his breathing became even more erratic.
" Daddy. Wait." Max said. Malfoy's heavy breathing was the only sound for three seconds. Harry counted. Then a swish of black robes followed by the man who owned them came into Harry's line of sight. He patted his sons head.
" Yes. I forgot, you've grown found of this one." He looked thoughtful for a moment before continuing. "We'll have to fix that."
" Any way, where was I? Oh, yes the curse."
" Sorry." Cindy said in that same tone she used on Harry. The brunette looked closer at her. He was searching for signs of the imperius curse. Hoping she was not willingly with this man. But Grel demanded his attention.
"Never mind, now. It's almost over. As I said I was cursed. No more sun bathing in Italy for me. No I was strictly on a no-sun diet. Hell, even the moonlight hurt me. And that pesky moon was always around, so I had to wait. And I couldn't go far, of course. Still it was worth it just to hunt on my own."
" That was when the first girl disappeared." Harry said out loud.
" Yes. She was small and tasted funny, but it was wonderful all the same. I had some good times with her. The last one though. Oh, mmmm. She had power."
" Your disgusting." Harry wanted nothing more then to shut the man up. He put no censors on his explanation and Harry wondered how much Max had already seen in his short life. What kind of violence and destruction was he subjected to each day? Harry felt the rage burning inside him.
Grelfick's dark eyes landed on him.
"Don't be jealous, Harry. I never forgot about you. The murders in this small town caught the ministry's attention. Eventually. When they didn't send you right away I grew worried. That ignorant Minister just wouldn't play along. Kept sending me amateurs." He scoffed. Cindy placed a hand on his arm, soothing him.
" So we got rid of him. And them, one by one." The gleam in his eyes made Harry shiver with rage. Cindy was beaming up at him, with admiration in her eyes. Harry was convinced she under some sort of spell making her feel devotion for the twisted sad excuse for a human before him.
"But they could only take my mind off things for a while." Harry's hate for this man only grew.
" Soon, I saw I had no choice. I sent Brian to the Ministry to get you here. You may know him as the newest Minister. Anyway, despite his dreadful taste in names, he followed my orders wonderfully. I was unsure of him at first. You see, he was new. I had to get rid of the last man who worked for me." Here Grel paused looking thoughtful once more. " It was a shame really. I should have killed him."
" Man went all... rouge on me. Thought he could get back into my good graces by cursing you. I believe you met him. On the train." He grunted and started pacing around. " He never could appreciate the finesse of a careful, well thought out plan." He stopped pacing and turned his deformed face towards Harry, forming what passed in his bent mind for a smirk.
" But you escaped. I was worried he'd messed up one to many times, but fate had other plans. You ended up in my town. Oh, Harry I'll admit I grew a bit nervous. I mean after all you're...you." He said stepping towards the brunette. Unconsciously Harry moved to shield Malfoy from the man before him. He had finally stopped gasping. Grel winked and Harry fought the urge to vomit again.
" Luckily everything worked out fine. You still made it here. But whoever you spoke with at the ministry kept his bloody loyalty. Until the end of course. But by any means, that's an excellent quality, Harry."
" I myself, have some loyal people in this town. I've here for ages. Cindy kept an eye on you for me. She even calmed me down enough to wait for this night. So I could have the pleasure of killing you myself. I wanted to send my people for you , when you first got here, but my Cindy has patients...."
He brought a deformed hand to her cheek. She leaned into it.
A loud explosion sounded above their heads or directly behind them, Harry couldn't tell for sure. Grel's face twisted in agony as he let out a low pain filled yelp. The sound of his head hitting the cement floor was something Harry never thought he'd be so happy to hear.
Ten Aurors had their wands trained on the unconscious body. Cindy shielded Max with her body as they were both stunned. Some one yelled an order and Harry felt hands untying him and helping him to his feet.
And just like that, it was over.
In just three short days so much had taken place. And it all ended here. Grel's un-moving body two feet from him. Their fake neighbor's unconscious, lying next to him. Malfoy still tied up on the floor behind him. Aurors milling around looking for evidence and other clues to the man's actions. Harry was paralyzed.
Kingsley put a hand on his shoulder.
" I'm so sorry, Harry. I just got so excited. I knew something was off with him, but I never imagined.... I lost my head for a moment. I never should have listen to him. I put you in danger."
Harry felt for the older man. They had an understanding between them and Harry found he couldn't be mad at the older wizard. Or maybe his brain just hadn't had time to process all that occurred.
" I know. It's over now, let's just try and get things back to normal."
The words sounded foreign. Everything felt so surreal. It was hard for him to fully grasp the situation. He wanted to leave before someone untied the secret blonde Auror.
" How did you find me, any way?" He said, filling the silence between them. Kingsley was looking at him with a searching gaze.
" The old man you mentioned on the phone. It wasn't hard to locate him."
" The muggle couple from the house. Are they okay?" Harry braced himself for the worst news.
" They're fine. A little confused, but alive. Memory charms were placed on them. They don't remember anything of you and Malfoy."
When Harry didn't respond, Kingsley continued.
" The men, Grelfick. He had the minister feeding him information. I suspected something was off with him, but I never imagined any one could have that much power. Having control of some one in such a high place. He could have done anything."
" It's sad, really. He was a normal wizard once. He lost most of his power in an accident years ago. There was a fire. Ever since then, he's withdrawn further into him self, shutting out the world. Blaming the world. I suppose since your a celebrity he some how fixated on you. Developed a connection. Much like a stalker. He..."
" I don't care." Harry said cutting him off.
" I'm tired. I want to go home. I'll.. Stop by the ministry tomorrow."
" Harry." He froze, praying Kingsley wouldn't ask him what was wrong.
" Your friends... we didn't tell any one anything went wrong."
So no one knew he was missing. He was silently grateful he didn't have to answer any questions and a little angry at Kingsley again. He nodded before apparating all this mess behind him.
Harry looked around the blue walls of his apartment. After having lived with all the things he had to put up with for the last few days, being ready to think on his feet, expecting to be caught nearly every minute. His nerves frayed, his sense heightened and now it was over so suddenly. A soft melancholy hung in the air. He sighed, wanting to push the last few days out of his mind.
He stripped on his way to the bathroom, ready for a hot shower and bed. Harry managed to shut his mind off as he stood under the spray, brushed his teeth and eventually crawled under his covers. However it seemed as soon as his head hit the pillow he was bombarded with everything he pushed down.
He was angry with himself. He was living in some fantasy, where he had been ready to start something with Malfoy, when in reality it was never even an option. The blonde never had feelings for him, outside of seeing Harry as some project for work. He let himself believe and he was made a fool of. Malfoy lied to him from the beginning, made him feel guilty, and used his attraction against him. He must have known Harry was starting to change the way he saw the Slytherin. That was why he increased his contact so much in the end. One touch and Harry was more flustered then a girl after her first kiss. It must have been easier then arguing.
What was even worse was that how ever much Malfoy deserved Harry's anger and un-wavering loathing, the brunette knew he still harbored feelings for the git. The whole time their insane captor had them bound and lying on the dirty floor, Harry's heart pounded in his chest out of fear, when the cold man's eyes would land on the blonde. Even after, when he was released, Harry felt an urge to check the blonde man for injuries.
He flipped over in his bed, trying to settle down. Ignoring the nagging feeling like something was missing. He tried to take comfort in the fact that at least he wouldn't have to see Malfoy again. Eventually this feeling would leave and he could get back to his life.
Hopefully, the next minister would be better then the last two. Not keep Harry in the building for the rest of his career, but not send him on a mission to be captured by a maniac, either. Some where in the middle would be just fine. Or maybe Harry could take some time off. Travel a little. Some where around one in the morning he drifted off, while thoughts of small towns and nice, non- crazy neighbors passed through his mind.
Harry woke at seven, growled into the pillow, flipped from his back to his front three times and stuck his feet out of the blanket, before finally giving up. He wandered around his apartment for a few hours, wondering why he felt so empty. He made breakfast and finished it all just to prove he didn't miss having people around him while he ate. He straightened his living room and changed his clothes. He hesitated before throwing them in his hamper. A little memento from his trip would hurt. At ten he called Kingsley to inform him he would be coming in.
Harry avoided the eyes on him as he walked into the ministry. He had gotten used to not be stared at and found he hadn't missed it. He moved swiftly to the elevator and walked directly to Kingsley's office once the doors opened.
His stomach dropped ten feet when he caught a flash of blonde sticking over the top of the chair in the large office. Malfoy's tired face had a swollen lip and bruise on his cheek. He was holding a plastic cup in his hand and didn't look up when Harry entered.
Kingsley crossed the room and clasped a hand on his shoulder.
" Harry. How are you?" The brunette shrugged. One thing he liked about Kingsley was, he never had to put on a brave face for the older man. He could let his real emotions through without worrying about upsetting him. It was part of the reason he enjoyed being friends with him.
" Right. We have Grelfick and the woman, Cindy, in our custody. They won't be getting out any time soon." The taller man took his seat behind his wooden desk. Harry sat in the chair next to Malfoy, who still didn't acknowledge him.
" Neither of them wanted to talk, however." Harry was a little surprised to hear that. After the way Grelfick was so eager to share his story.
" We gave them veritaserum and got the story. He went mad long ago. Before that he was a researcher. He was working on some breakthrough stuff. He was well known throughout the wizarding community. However, after the accident, he moved underground avoiding all people. He couldn't stand the ridicule and judgment. You see, the spell he was attempting at the time of his accident was controversial and people didn't approve when they learned what he had been up to. Blew up half house, including his sister and her daughter."
Harry felt a pang of sympathy for the man.
" That with the disfigurement left him open to public damnation. He felt the world gave up on him, so he gave up on the world. But it must have been a lonely life. We found old newspapers in his....in the place he was staying at. They go back years and they all were about you, Harry."
Harry felt sick thinking there had been some one out there obsessing over him for years. At least with Voldemort they had a connection. This man never even met him. Harry tried not to think about how many others were out there, even now.
" He must have connected with you. Focused all his time and energy on destroying you."
Harry saw Malfoy shift out of the corner of his eye.
" But he never had the courage to go through with it. Until, of course Cindy came along. She must have given him a boast. Or encouragement. But ultimately it wasn't enough. He talked about big plans and making a change in the world, but he never went through with it. In fact if it wasn't for her, I think we never would have know who he was."
" Anyway, she left him. He went a little madder, then. The only human contact he had in years left him. So he worked even harder on getting you. But she cursed him. Her excuse was he never left the "house" anyway, so she cursed him to stay there forever. But she was only a muggle, so over the years the spell dwindled. Eventually he could leave."
Harry remembered Grel describing this the night before.
" He worked hard to get his strength back and to get you. He wanted to prove he loved her. She came back to him. Only because she felt he owed her for the child. When she discovered his new plans she decided to give him a chance. They worked together getting you here."
" I still can't believe it. She seemed so....." He trailed off.
" Normal." Malfoy filled in for him.
" I think I know what you're talking about. She tried that with the Aurors after they took the stunning spell off her. She has some...way about her. It makes some people feel more...... relaxed around her. She almost had Carmichael letting her free and running off with her. Poor boy had to practically be dragged away from her. She used it to get what she wanted. She was the one who tricked the minister. Dangerous woman."
Harry felt his ears burn as he thought of how he acted when he first met her. The fact that Malfoy must be thinking the same thing wasn't making him feel any better.
" She had other people too. Some followers in town. Some banker and a kid from the local store. Got them to watch you two."
Harry immediately thought of the young man from the store when he first got to town. The man must have recognized him and been surprised. Probably ran to tell Cindy as soon as he could. Harry felt even more betrayed. It seemed like everyone in the town was lying.
They all looked down, lost in their thoughts. After a few beats, Harry spoke, breaking the pensive silence.
" What happens to Max?"
" I guess he'll go into the system. Muggle orphanage. Cindy is not fit to raise a child."
" So she really wasn't under a spell?" Harry already knew the answer, before Kingsley shook his head.
" Give him to Denice and Bob." Malfoy spoke, making Harry jump with his tone.
" Who?" Kingsley asked.
" The muggle couple. They wanted kids. Tell them it was their great uncle's son's child or something."
Harry stiffened beside him and used all his will power to look at the blonde.
Kingsley eyed him for a moment before nodding once.
" I think that can be arranged."
" Is that all?" Harry asked suddenly. He suddenly needed to get out of the room. Kingsley frowned at him.
"Harry, about Malfoy... I never..." Harry put up a hand to stop him. He stood and moved to the door.
" Don't worry about it. I understand. I think I'm going to take some time off." Kingsley opened his mouth, then shut it again. He sighed before nodding. Harry walked into the hall, shutting both men inside the office.
Truth was he wasn't upset with Kingsley. The man was smart and he didn't do things without think them over first. If he thought having Malfoy follow him was the right decision, then he had his reasons. As Harry thought about it the older wizard had been right in his suspicions. All in all, Harry wasn't going to make the other man feel guilty. It probably wouldn't work anyway.
He surprised himself with his last statement, but decided to roll with it. Maybe he would visit with his friends for a while. Who knows maybe he could visit Bob and Denice. They wouldn't remember him, but it would make him feel better to see them with his own eyes. He was only slightly upset with Malfoy for thinking of giving them Max. He didn't know they wanted children and he wondered when they confided in Malfoy.
Harry's heart flipped with one thought of the blonde. Today's meeting had only confirmed his late night musings the previous evening. He still had feelings for the stupid twit. He felt heartbroken and lonely, which just depressed him further. What they had wasn't even real. It wasn't anything accept a job. He needed to forget the way he felt safe knowing Malfoy had his back, or the worry he felt when he watched Malfoy slam into the shelf after the window shattered. He wanted to burn the image of Malfoy in a nothing but a towel from his mind. He was desperate to get rid of the memory of Malfoy pushing him against the wall or the feel of his hands in his hair.
Harry growled as he shoved his finger at the elevator button. He stood up a little straighter when he head Kingsley's office door open and a shadow fell over him. Harry closed his eyes and held in a sigh of frustration.
" Don't." Harry said, willing the lift to come.
" We need to...." Another wizard came to stand next to them, cutting Malfoy's plead short.
The lift came and Harry shoved his way into the packed car. Malfoy wormed his way next to the brunette, but didn't say a word. Harry could feel the heat coming off his body and cursed himself for noticing every time their shoulder's bumped. He smelled good, like he was meant to. Harry bit his tongue until tears formed in his eyes.
He didn't hesitate to jump out of the car and race to the nearest apparating point. He let out a breath once he was inside his own walls. A faint 'pop' caused him to jump out of his skin. He turned to face a somber looking Malfoy.
" What are you doing here?" Harry asked. The anger in his voice surprised him. He was more upset at the stubborn blonde then he realized.
" We need to talk, Potter."
" About what? How you lied to me? How my boss hired you to baby sit me? How you made me think..." He stopped himself.
" What... I made you think what?" Pressed the blonde.
" Just go away."
" No. I have something to say."
" And why should I listen? What makes you think I'm even going to believe you? You were pretending the whole time." Harry's anger was getting the better of him. All he wanted was the blonde to leave so he could go to sleep.
" Harry, I stopped pretending the night the police came to our door."
The brunette scoffed.
"What do you want from me?" Malfoy sighed.
" Oh, I don't know. How about the truth? But that's probably too difficult for a bastard Slytherin to handle." Harry shouted.
" You want the truth. I'm a spy. The ministry hires me when they want to get information from the other side. I often work with ex-death eaters, convincing them to trust me. I use the information I gather from them and turn it into the ministry. Kingsley asked me to back you up on this mission. He knows my work and is one of the only people at the ministry who trusts me."
Harry slowly unfolded his arms.
" He suspected something was off and hired me under the table. I hate what I do, but I've been doing it for years. It's the only thing I'm good for."
He sighed and used a softer tone when he said the next part.
" In all that time, I've done things I wish I hadn't, seen things I wish I could forget, met people who would be too terrifying for even the darkest nightmares, but I never met anyone who gets under my skin the way that you can."
" I'm not perfect. And I'm sorry I lied." His voice was barely above a whisper.
Harry blinked at him. He wanted so badly to believe.
" And right now I want nothing more then to push you up against the wall and kiss you."
" That honest enough for you?"
Harry eyed him carefully. He was breathing hard and looked more vulnerable then a lost puppy. Doubt was creeping into his features and Harry felt his anger melt away. It was only there to cover his insecurities in the first place, and Malfoy's words surged through him, making him feel wanted and filling him with a confidence he hadn't experienced before. He would deal with his weak resolve later. Right now all he wanted was to be touching the blonde before him.
" I'm not going to just forgive you. I'm still mad you lied." Harry barely got the words out before he was slammed into the nearest flat surface. Malfoy was looking back at him with dark eyes.
" I'll make it up to you." He kissed the brunette hard, stealing his breath and making his toes curl. He broke away from the soft lips to kiss a path down Harry's neck. He shuddered and clutched the back of Malfoy's shirt, drawing the blonde closer. Malfoy's tongue swept across his throat and Harry shivered.
" Promise." He whispered against Harry's skin.
All the pent up lust for the past few days of un-finished kisses and not so subtle flirting was pounding through them. Harry's hands slid down Malfoy's back to his ass. He forced the Slytherin's hips to his, pressing their hard erections together. Brain-racking pleasure coursed through them. A moan slipped from Harry's lips.
" There's what I wanted to hear."
Malfoy rubbed against him again, pressing Harry hard against the wall. Another moan left his mouth. Malfoy's hands were popping his last button and sliding his shirt off his shoulders, before Harry realized they were moving. He had to release his death grip on the blonde to free his arms from his top, and used the opportunity to lift the blue material of Malfoy's own shirt. Bare chests, angled muscles covered in a thin gleam of sweat met as Harry greedily took Malfoy's mouth.
He whimpered when the blonde moved his sweet lips away. But quickly got over it as they descended on his ear. Malfoy playfully bit the outside shell and ran a hand over Harry's chest. His other hand was gripping Harry's hip as he ground into the brunette again and again. Harry groaned and wrapped his fingers tightly in Malfoy's hair.
" Wanna hear all your sounds, Harry." Malfoy pulled back slightly and skimmed his hand across Harry's skin as he moved it to the Gryffindor's pants. He palmed Harry's cock through his trousers. Harry shoved his head into Malfoy's shoulder as he tried to remain standing. His legs felt like jelly and was almost in pain by how much he wanted this, but he couldn't have asked Malfoy to stop if he wanted to.
When the hand slipped inside his pants and past his boxer top Harry's breath hitched. He bit Malfoy hard on the neck when the blonde's deft hand found his throbbing erection. The action earned him a growl from the Slytherin. Harry used the blunt of his teeth to do it again. This time Malfoy groaned and used his thumb to make Harry momentarily forget what planet he was on.
" Wanted this so bad. Want...Ngggn." Malfoy tried, but Harry had worked his way into Malfoy's pants and was mimicking the blonde's earlier actions with his fingers.
" What? Tell me what you want?" Harry urged him on. One hand down his pants the other still around his skull, fingers laced in between the silky locks. He was sure his grip must be painful but the blonde didn't show signs of wanting him to stop.
" Fuck...Harry, want... you, want more..." Malfoy was losing composure and Harry never found him more attractive.
" Me too. Wanna feel you.... 's not enough...." Harry was increasing the pace, pumping Malfoy faster and harder with each muttered word. The blonde didn't even try to speak. He just kept running the hand, not fucking Harry, over his chest, across his neck around to his back feeling every inch he could.
" Draco, not enough....Ngggn...want you, wanna feel you inside me...."
Instantly the blonde's eyes found his. And fuck. He was just staring at him with those open, shocked eyes filled with awe. Harry nearly lost it.
He was moving urgently, pressing his dick into Malfoy's warm, tight hand, silently pleading for him to end this beautiful torment. Harry felt his orgasm looming and used his free hand to grab Malfoy's face. He kissed him deeply until he had to pull away and scream as his orgasm hit. Malfoy followed a second later.
When Harry calmed down the first thing he noticed was they were on the floor. He slid down the wall at some point and Malfoy came right down with him.
" Wow." He said, the filter on his mouth must be on the fritz. That was quite possibly the most lame thing he could have said.
" Yeah." Malfoy didn't seem to notice.
" I meant what I said Harry. I'm sorry. You don't know how hard it was for me. All I wanted was to let myself go, but I felt guilty for lying. And since I'm still being honest I think we can get past this and maybe this could be the start of a very....beneficial relationship."
" I couldn't agree more. In fact, Draco I'd like to invite you on my trip with me. I planned on visiting some old friends."
"They live pretty close. It's this small town about three hours away. I hear they are about to adopt."
Malfoy beamed at him and Harry's heart flipped. This felt right. Despite how interesting it was going to be, trying to explain how he suddenly fell for the blonde to his friends, Harry wasn't worried.
" Sound's perfect." He said, moving forward to capture Harry's lips. The brunette smirked as he pulled away.
" You know I meant what I said too." Harry kissed him hard before he jumped up and walked to the bedroom. It took Malfoy five full seconds before he remembered Harry's heated words and quickly followed the sly Gryffindor.
An: Surprised? . Okay, seriously, evil laugh aside, I have to say I'm a bit shocked at what I wrote. I think It was the dirtiest lemon scene I ever wrote. So please tell me if it was too much, just enough...not enough? I suck at endings, but I think I like this one. Did that feel rushed to any one else? I tried to lead up to the evil Cindy1 but still make it a surprise. I don't know if it all worked out. Please let me know what you think.