This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoat Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.
For GoesKaboom, who had the dubious honor of being the 2,000th reviewer for Must Love Quidditch. This is in response to her prompt. Enjoy!
Draco wrinkled his nose, using the toe of his expensive Italian leather loafer to prod the huge bag sitting in the entryway.
"You can't be serious," he said, looking both horrified and mildly curious at the same time.
Harry shrugged, hefting the large bag onto his shoulder and moving toward the door. He looked up, grateful once more that the overbearing and shrill portrait of Sirius' mum had been removed. He was sure she would be even more disdainful of what he'd just suggested than Draco was, and the aristocratic blond didn't need any help in that area.
"We don't have any other choice," Harry said, gesturing toward Draco with the heavy bag. "We've two weeks before Kreacher returns from his holiday, so we have to, unless you consider these an option."
Draco made a disgusted sound, moving slightly so he was no longer blocking Harry's access to the front door. They'd been living together at Grimmauld Place for more than two years, but he could honestly say this issue had never come up before.
He'd been against giving the house-elf a holiday in the first place, but Harry was dead set on it. The elf, while still bound to Harry, had enjoyed a modest salary and time off each week since the war. Draco hadn't pressed the subject, since Harry's best friend was the Undersecretary for Creatures Rights at the newly reorganized Ministry. It hadn't caused much of a problem until now, one week into Kreacher's mandatory Hermione-imposed three-week sabbatical. She'd insisted even house-elves needed holidays, and when Hermione had discovered that Harry's elf hadn't taken more than the required afternoon off in three years, she'd insisted on rectifying the situation immediately.
Draco frowned, wondering if they had any other options. They certainly weren't helpless without their house-elf; he and Harry had managed just fine for the last week, seeing to their own meals (though most of those had been eaten out) and keeping the large house relatively tidy all by themselves. But this – this was too much.
Glaring at Harry until he was sure the other man wouldn't move, Draco strode into the study and threw a pinch of Floo powder in the fireplace.
"Granger-Weasley residence," he said clearly, stepping back to wait for Hermione or Ron to answer.
Seconds later, Ron's face appeared in the fire. To his credit, he only grimaced a bit when he saw who was on the other end. He and Draco had settled into an uneasy tolerance of each other after the blond started dating Harry, but they were still far from friends.
"Is Hermione in?" Draco asked, his jaw clenched with barely controlled fury.
Ron blanched, his green face paling noticeably in the flames. Hermione and Draco hadn't been on speaking terms for weeks, ever since she demanded Kreacher take a holiday. The fact that the wizened old elf had taken Draco's side instead of hers had only infuriated the witch more, fueling their feud.
"Er, no," he said, looking behind himself to make sure she hadn't come home since the Floo call started. "Can I take a message?"
Draco's grey eyes flashed furiously, his hands balling into fists at his sides. To his mind, this was Hermione's problem, not his or Harry's. What exactly did she expect them to do? And for that matter, where was Harry taking the bag? How could gathering it all up and taking it out make things better?
"No message," he said curtly, dousing the flames immediately and missing Ron's look of relief completely.
Harry cleared his throat from the doorway, his arms crossed over his chest.
"I could have saved you the effort, if you'd told me who you were calling," he drawled, the indolence in his tone adopted from years spent with Draco. "She's at a conference in Devon about Centaur rights."
Draco rolled his eyes in disgust, casting a glance back toward the empty fireplace. Though he was loath to admit it, Hermione was one of the brightest witches of their generation. He had no idea why she insisted on wasting her considerable talent negotiating for rights on behalf of beings that didn't want her help in the first place.
"What was your brilliant idea, then?" he snapped, nodding toward the abandoned bag that was still in the entryway. "This whole farce is her fault, so I thought she might know what to do."
Harry laughed, holding a hand out to Draco. The blond stepped closer, letting him twine their fingers together. Harry gave his hand a bracing squeeze before he spoke, knowing his words would shock Draco.
"We're going to deal with it ourselves," he said gravely, pausing for effect. "The Muggle way."
Draco refused to help carry the bag, which left Harry scrambling heft the bulky thing while they strode purposefully down the sidewalk. In hindsight, Harry supposed he should be grateful the blond was coming along at all, given his reaction. He cursed himself for not thinking to cast a Lightening Spell on the bag when they'd Apparated into the alleyway earlier; he hadn't wanted to chance taking Draco on the Tube, so he'd compromised by getting them as close to their destination as he could without arousing the suspicions of Muggles.
"This is ridiculous," Draco pouted, his brisk pace keeping him several steps ahead of Harry. "I haven't a clue how –" he lowered his voice, glancing surreptitiously around to see if anyone was listening "– Muggles take care of this sort of thing, but I'm positive it's not something we should be lowering ourselves to do."
Harry shifted the weight of the bag on his hip and jogged to catch up with Draco, steering the blond toward a nondescript glass door nearby. He could see the look of total revulsion on the blond's face, but he gave him credit for entering anyway.
"This is –" Draco looked around, unable to describe what he saw before him. He simply had no words in his vocabulary that would fit. He had no idea where they were, or what they would do there.
"A Laundrette, Draco," Harry said patiently, resting the sack of dirty clothes near an empty washing machine and digging a handful of Muggle change out of his pocket. He'd stopped by Gringotts after work to have money changed for this express purpose.
There was no look of comprehension on Draco's face, only more confusion as Harry fed money into a machine and received a small bottle in exchange. He held back an exclamation of protest when he saw Harry begin stuffing their dirty clothing into a large metal bin. Did they really come all this way just to throw the clothes out? Surely they could have just tossed them in the bin at Grimmauld Place?
A quick look around the nearly empty Laundrette confirmed that none of the Muggles found Harry's actions disturbing. An elderly woman sat near another large metal contraption in the corner, her attention riveted on the knitting in her lap. Colorful items swirled around behind a glass window next to her, and Draco briefly wondered if she was a witch; wouldn't a Muggle be concerned about things moving around with no apparent cause?
A heavily tattooed man sat in a chair near the bin Harry was tossing things in, absorbed in the magazine he held. A bag similar to theirs rested next to his feet, but it was only half-full. Draco frowned, wondering if all Muggles threw out their clothes when they became soiled. After a bit of thought, he decided it made sense, considering they didn't have house-elves who could manage Cleaning Charms. It had to be beastly expensive, though.
Draco heard Harry slam the metal lid shut, surprised when the dark-haired wizard dug in his pocket for more change, feeding it into a hole on the side of the contraption he'd just thrown their clothes into. They were paying to throw them away?
"It's a washing machine," Harry explained quietly, sensing Draco's confusion and frustration. "It gets the clothes clean, just like a Cleaning Charm."
Neither of them had any level of proficiency with household spells, which is why they hadn't tried spelling the garments clean themselves. It made Harry wonder if they relied too much on Kreacher, while it made Draco wonder why they didn't have more than one house-elf.
Draco looked around again, this time noticing a young mother with several children hovering nearby. The machine with the window had stopped moving, and she opened the door, scooping what he could now identify as clothing out into a basket.
"That's a dryer. After the clothes get cleaned, they come out wet. We'll transfer them over to that machine to dry them," Harry said, his lips curving at Draco's bewildered expression.
"Muggles do this every time their clothes get dirty?" Draco asked incredulously, watching the tattooed man stand and lift the lid on his own metal machine and adding a liquid before closing it again.
"They do," Harry confirmed, pulling another machine's lid open and stuffing more clothes into it. "My aunt had a washer and dryer at her house, so I didn't have to go to a Laundrette when I washed their clothes. It's much more convenient to be able to do it at home."
Draco stayed silent, not trusting himself to respond. He'd learned precious little about Harry's childhood over the years, but the stories he'd heard left him convinced the boy had been treated like a house-elf. He pressed his lips together into a grim, bloodless line at the thought of the hero of the wizarding world acting as a servant to Muggles.
"Like this?" he asked, ducking down to grab another handful of clothes and dropping it into the machine, following Harry's lead.
He'd be damned if he'd let Harry bow and scrape to anyone – even him – now. Draco didn't want to share anything in common with the Muggle filth that raised Harry, and if that meant putting his own clothes in the washer-upper, then that's what he'd do.
"Just the whites in this one," Harry said, blinking in shock at the sudden shift in Draco's mood. He picked out a pair of dark boxers from the machine, stuffing them back into the bag. "The colors bleed otherwise."
Draco nodded knowingly, although he had no idea what Harry was talking about, and continued to fish white clothing out of the bag. As soon as they'd set that machine washing as well, he and Harry filled a third washer with the rest of their clothes.
Harry shrugged, pulling a battered orange plastic chair over and collapsing in it.
"Now we wait," he said, wishing he'd thought to bring a book to read. It wouldn't have been safe to bring the newspaper or any of the magazines they subscribed to, since the Muggles would surely notice the moving pictures. "It will take the washers about 45 minutes to finish, and then we'll move everything over to the dryers. That takes a little longer."
Harry felt an unexpected surge of arousal at the sight of Draco folding himself into one of the tacky chairs without complaint. His attitude had take an abrupt turn for some reason, though Harry wasn't about to ask why. The blond's tailored wool trousers and crisp white shirt made him look incredibly out of place, unlike Harry's own T-shirt and denims. He found the paradoxical image of one of Britain's most well-bred wizards sitting on a flimsy chair in a thoroughly Muggle Laundrette to be absolutely intoxicating.
"What are you doing?" he asked, his voice wavering when Draco's lean thigh nearly brushed up against his, the heat of his body seeping through their trousers and sending a thrill down Harry's spine.
"Waiting," Draco drawled, scooting his chair even closer and trailing long fingers up Harry's leg.
Harry sent a panicked glance around the Laundrette, relieved that no one was looking their way. The young family he'd seen earlier had left, leaving the elderly woman and the man as the only other customers.
"Draco," Harry whispered, his voice full of censure. "Behave."
The blond smirked, scooting his chair away from Harry's and standing, giving Harry the space he wanted. A minute later, the elderly woman packed up her knitting and left abruptly, never looking back at her laundry, which was still in the dryer. The tattooed man joined her, his magazine falling to the floor as he hopped up and made for the door.
"Draco!" Harry gasped, feeling the waves of magic wash over him as Draco cast Locking and Warding spells on the door as soon as the two Muggles had exited. Harry frowned, looking over at the smug blond. "What did you do to them?"
Draco shrugged, looking unconcerned. A Privacy Ward shimmered over the windows and doors, effectively masking any activity within. No one would be able to get inside the Laundrette or even see through the windows until Draco lifted the spells.
"Just a light Suggestion Spell," he murmured, dropping to straddle Harry's legs. He leaned forward, nuzzling against the soft skin of his neck. "They went for a coffee. We've only got about twenty minutes."
Harry opened his mouth to protest – using magic on Muggles was strictly forbidden except in cases of emergency, and this definitely wasn't an emergency – when Draco nipped at his earlobe, a move the blond knew always made Harry melt.
"The Ministry – gah," Harry managed, angling his neck to give Draco better access to the tender skin.
"Such an eloquent defense of the law, Auror Potter," Draco whispered against his neck, chuckling when Harry shivered.
"Should I stop?" Draco murmured, smiling when Harry burrowed closer to him. "Acts of public lewdness are prohibited by Section 194-b dash 801, part four of the Ministry's code."
Harry moaned, thrusting his erection up against Draco's. Even through their trousers, the friction felt delicious. He loved it when Draco, who was a solicitor in the same Ministry division Harry served as an Auror in, quoted archaic code. He loved seeing Draco demonstrate how intelligent and cunning – in effect, how Slytherin – he was.
"Punishable by?" Harry rasped, shuddering when Draco pulled him out of the chair and started to fumble with the fasteners on his denims.
"Up to six months on house arrest, depending on the severity of the lewdness, and a year's probation after that," Draco answered, pushing the heavy fabric down Harry's thighs.
"What would you pursue in this instance, Councilor?"
Draco laughed, pinning Harry up against the close and rubbing his still-clothed erection against Harry's naked arse.
"The maximum sentence, of course," Draco replied, smirking when Harry gasped as his skin came into contact with the cold metal. "Things are going to get very lewd here in a moment."
He quickly unfastened his own trousers, stepping out of them and kicking them to the side along with his shoes. Draco impatiently hitched Harry's shirt up, muttering a Lubricating Spell to prepare his lover.
"Draco – Jesus!" Harry cried out, surprised by the gentle but unexpected finger that pushed inside his entrance. He whined slightly at the burn when Draco unceremoniously added a second finger, pushing back against him the moment it started to feel good.
They usually took their time, but the spells Draco had used to ensure their privacy were already nearly half-spent. They couldn't risk renewing them without raising suspicions, and the last thing Harry wanted was a troop of Aurors descending on the Laundrette demanding an explanation.
"It's good, go," Harry urged, his eyes closing when Draco added a third finger and began to twist his wrist, letting his fingers brush against Harry's prostate.
Draco drew back, repeating the Lubrication Spell to coat his cock. He pushed into Harry slowly, pausing to let him adjust to the intrusion and the unfamiliar angle. They were nearly the same height, and it was difficult to find a position that was comfortable for both of them.
Harry grimaced, spreading his legs further and bending his knees a bit to give Draco easier access. He leaned forward, his entire body now resting against the washing machine. It made it nearly impossible for him to touch himself, but he doubted it would be a problem; he was already beyond aroused at the illicitness of their encounter, and as the minutes ticked by, bringing them closer to almost certain discovery, he felt his excitement increase even more.
"Better?" Draco asked, wrapping his fingers around Harry's hips to steady him in his awkward position. He curved his body to fit against Harry's, feeling the dark-haired wizard relax as the position became more comfortable.
"Mmm," Harry agreed, his fingertips white as he gripped the sides of the washing machine to keep his balance. Then Draco began to move, and suddenly he hardly noticed the burn in his thigh muscles from the odd position or the ache in his fingers. "God, yes."
Draco moved his arm, swiping it across his brow to keep the sweat from dripping into his eyes. He glanced toward the doors nervously, picking up the pace of his thrusts as he did. For all his bravado, he really didn't want to be caught. It would be personally embarrassing and professionally devastating for two of the Ministry's rising stars to be caught out like this. The fear intensified every sensation, sending him careening toward his orgasm much faster than he normally would.
He was just about to pull Harry's hips back slightly to give him access to stroke his cock when the washing machine shifted into its spin cycle, making the metal vibrate violently. The dark-haired man went rigid, every forceful thrust from Draco pushing him harder against the vibrations.
"Oh God," he moaned, too thrilled at the feeling to be embarrassed. "Oh God, oh God, oh God."
Draco gave one last thrust, burying himself deeply inside Harry as he came, the brunet's name on his lips. He felt Harry buck and shudder beneath him, the vibrations and the force of Draco's final thrust too much. He tensed, his cock exploding without either of them touching it, coating the side of the washer with thick white ropes of come.
He was tempted to stay in that position forever, but a quick glance at the wall clock had Draco pulling out and casting hurried Cleaning Charms on both of them.
"Forty seconds," Draco warned, stooping to grab their trousers. He tossed Harry's denim's to him, pulling on his own wool slacks with practiced ease.
They'd barely managed to straighten their clothes when the wards dissolved. Seconds later, the door opened, admitting the elderly lady and the tattooed man. Both looked mildly confused, but neither was the slightest bit suspicious as they made their way back to their spots, settling in as though nothing had interrupted them.
Draco spotted the mess Harry had made against the side of the washer, surreptitiously Banishing it with a flick the wand hidden in his shirt sleeve. He winked at Harry, grinning when a pink flush crept across the other wizard's face at the oversight. The flush grew into a full-fledged blush when the machine suddenly shuddered to a stop, the spin cycle over.
"Now what?" Draco asked, leaning against the now-still machine carelessly.
"Er, now we put the clothes in the dryers," he said, his face still hot.
"Or," Draco said, leaning in close and whispering in Harry's ear, "we could just take it home and cast a few Drying Charms. Think of all the time we'd save."
He leaned away, leering suggestively at Harry and leaving no doubt as to what he planned to spend all that extra time doing.
"Yeah, alright," Harry said, feeling a stirring of interest in his groin. He was still incredibly turned on by what they'd done, as well as how close they'd come to being caught.
Draco helped him load the sopping wet clothes into the empty laundry bag, drawing curious stares from the Laundrette's other two occupants. This time, Draco was the one to heft the bag, hurrying toward the door.
"Muggles do this every week, do they?" Draco asked, a dangerous glint in his grey eyes.
"Usually, yes," Harry answered, quirking an eyebrow at the blond in challenge. Somehow he didn't think Draco would put up the same kinds of protests about laundry day next time Kreacher was away.
– The End –
Author's note: If you couldn't guess, GoesKaboom's prompt was for a fic with Harry and Draco in a Laundrette (that's a Laundromat to my fellow Americans ... thanks to skinnyrita for setting me straight on the British term!)