A/N:Happy birthday, Lilyseyes. I realise it is early, but you know why I will not be able to give it to you on Saturday. Have a great day.

Lighting the Shadows

Severus eased out the water bottle from its pocket in the picnic hamper, halting when it scraped against one of the buckles. He glanced over at Harry, but the dark eyelashes were still splayed in twin fans against the cheeks and the mouth was still oozing drool.

His mouth twitched as he gazed upon the twit. It seemed that barring fireworks and cannon, Harry was blissfully unaware of what was in store for him.

Severus loved times like these. Times he could expend how he wished; in voracious scrutiny, undetected; using Harry as a canvas for Severus to work wondrous pleasures of the imagination; and many more times spent in the avaricious cataloguing of what was a gift beyond anything he could express.

Of course, the lack of such expression was not a defect, of sorts. It was just too fragile a concept, this happiness, for Severus to want to handle it with anything other than the lightest touch.

That he would handle it at all was an improvement. Their first steps together – many months ago, now – had been accompanied by the shadow of disbelief mixed with repudiation. Further down the line, the shadow had become thinner, less tangible; its resilience to Harry's dogged pursuit had weakened, until Severus himself had moved to rid them of its company.

Hope was now something that failed to ignite the urge to retreat and he had come to appreciate, if not understand, the honesty in Harry's eyes. Light was slowly drowning the shadow – not obliterating it, rather the light had become too intense for the shadow to hold form.

So here he sat, alongside Harry, and Harry had no idea what was about to happen to him... to them. This was Severus' decision; always it had been his, and today it would change everything.

He sidled closer to Harry, uncapped the bottle and wondered where to begin. The pulse on the throat, the bared chest or the arms stretched above his head: all were opportunities. His eyes snapped memories while he considered.

Finally, he nodded to the shadow and poured water into his palm. In an awkward shift of bottom and knees, he leant closer still, dipped a finger into the small pool of water, and reached out to paint.

He painted a slim line from shoulder to shoulder, through the faint cluster of dark curls at the base of his throat, the line disappearing quickly in the heat of the June day. Harry wriggled in his sleep; his stomach squirming against the sensation as Severus dipped again and drew lines from each shoulder to a hip bone, then across and through the dark hair on his stomach. He amused himself by increasing Harry's discomfort by circling a finger around his navel.


Severus' mouth twitched again. He poured more water and resumed his painting on chest and stomach; drawing loops and swirls, straight lines and slanted ones, curves and jerky little dabs.

"Uh... What are you doing, Severus?"

"I'm writing," he whispered, his eyes still on his parchment.

Harry lifted his head and peered down the length his body. "Well, that's nice," he said. "And what are you writing?"

"A thank you note."

"Right." He shifted onto his elbows and sent a puzzled glance towards Severus. "Thank you for what, exactly?"

"For the gift you have given me, Harry." Severus looked up then, and met Harry's look squarely. "I am ready to accept it now."

A momentary expression of bewilderment flashed across Harry's face. Then he smiled, which grew into a grin, and then it softened into a smile again, warmed until it was an emotion in and of itself.

"I am ready to make love to you, Harry. Now."

Severus waited a moment, only half-heartedly checking for a recantation because he more than knew he could trust in this. And he was right. Harry's breathing, he could see, had become more erratic, faster and shallower, and heated. His eyes had darkened to sage and his mouth already fed on anticipation.

Severus leaned in, his heart rate increasing every inch his lips drew closer to Harry's. He knew these lips, this kiss. He knew it all so well, and yet there was now something more to it. It had grown bigger, lighter and something else entirely. His cock twitched in his trousers.

"Severus, you're killing me here," Harry moaned.

Severus chuckled a bit, but decided against prolonging. After all, now that he had made the decision, his body was eager to make good on it.

He slid out of his shirt and trousers, stopping every few seconds to press a kiss onto Harry's hip bones and thighs, which had been stripped of their jeans in unseemly haste.

He chuckled again and draped his body over Harry's. Taking the much-loved face in his hands, he studied every pore, every curve of flesh before dropping soft kisses onto the corners of the mouth.

Harry groaned and he bucked his hips, rubbing his cock into Severus' stomach.

Abruptly, any semblance of languor and patience was swept away. This would be no slow lovemaking; this would be hard and fast, brutal on an esoteric level and visceral in the extreme.

He snarled; sat back on his heels, snatched up his wand and pressed it to Harry's arse. It seemed the mood was catching, as Harry writhed deliciously, wantonly, when Severus cast his spells, lifting and curling his hips.

"I want you," Severus growled. "Everything you can give me, I want."

"Fuck, Severus. Take it. Take it all."

So he did. With one hand on his prick, he covered Harry again, and bit both his lips and Harry's.

Harry groaned deep in his throat and pulled on Severus' shoulders, his arms, his neck. Fingers dug into Severus' skin as he guided his prick into the loosened hole. It slid in as though presenting a gilt-edged invitation. The heat and tightness sent shards of pleasure into his groin and he felt light-headed under the onslaught.

He paused for Harry's sake, although his mind, his body was yelling at him to fuck hard, fuck fast. Legs trembling, he nearly whimpered when Harry lifted his hips more and sucked Severus' cock in deeper.

Severus closed his eyes, relishing the overwhelming feeling of joining, then snapped them open again. This time – this one time, at least, he wanted Harry to see everything he was feeling.

Again, it seemed Harry was in agreement.

Their eyes held as Severus drew his hips back and then thrust in, forcing their bodies together. Their eyes held when Severus angled his hips and Harry bucked and arched. Their eyes even held when Harry grunted and spurted come between their stomachs. Their gaze only faltered slightly when sparkles of light shifted aside the shadows at the edge of Severus' vision and he came deep inside Harry.

His heart thundering and sweat running rivers down his spine, Severus collapsed onto Harry.

They stayed like that until they were both calm, with Harry pressing kisses onto Severus' face and carding a hand through his hair.

"Was it... Did it feel any different?" Severus asked after a while.

"From the times we've had sex?"

Severus nodded, brushing a wayward daisy from Harry's hair.

"Yes, Severus." Harry pressed his lips to Severus' ear. "They were never more than you and me, whereas in telling me that you love me, this was the advent of us."


Thank you for reading!