Disclaimer: See Chapter One.
A/N: This is the last chapter! There is a short epilogue at the end of it also. Please review and if anyone has a better summary for the story than what I have posted please feel free to share it with me. Thanks for reading.
Harry gripped Draco's hand tightly as they walked down the street in London. Both had made sure that they had worn hats to cover their heads, and also it was rather cold. It had been a week since Draco had been released and since then Draco had been staying at Snape's house. The press had somehow gotten a hold of the fact that Draco had been released from prison, but thankfully the press had not known where exactly Draco had gone to.
Today was their first outing since Draco's release. He and Harry had stayed at Snape's for the first week to shy away from the press and to get intimately reacquainted with one another. Harry decided that they would be ice skating and thankfully the rink wasn't too terribly crowded.
"I haven't skated in years, Harry!" Draco whined as Harry dragged Draco towards the rink, both of them wobbling as they walked crookedly on their skates.
"Well either have I so we can both fall on our bums together." Harry looked back at Draco and grinned at him.
"I suppose," Draco grumbled.
Once they were on the ice Draco insisted that they stayed by the wall so they could hold on in case they fell. They did this several times until Harry pulled Draco away towards the middle. Sure enough after only a few minutes Draco fell. His eyes widened and his mouth was in the shape of a slight 'oh'. Harry thought he would start complaining, but instead the blonde laughed and lay back on the ice.
"Are you all right?" asked Harry.
Draco's laughs subsided and Harry helped him up.
"I feel wonderful." Draco moved closer to Harry so that they were almost touching. "I love you," he murmured.
Harry gave him a soft kiss on his lips and leaned back to look into the blonde's grey eyes. "I love you too."
"Are you sure you're okay?" Harry asked, turning to the blonde. He scratched the nape of his neck in nervousness as he watched Draco, who seemed even paler than normal. Draco's only response was a nod.
"They can't get you. Snape will make sure they don't get too close. And I'll be there." Harry smiled in encouragement and Draco smiled back.
"Okay," he finally said quietly.
Harry glanced out of the car where he could already see reporters waiting. Today was the last day of the trial where the other supposed Death Eaters would be on trial. It was also the first day since Draco was released under bail and they knew that now the press would get wind of it. Since Harry's class ended he still had sat with Lupin's class during the trials, but today he would sit on the main floor with Draco, one row behind Snape.
"Are you ready?" Snape asked. Harry looked at Draco one last time to see a determined look on the blonde's face and he nodded. Harry got out of the car and held the door open for Draco.
Once Draco was out of the car Harry grabbed his hand and held on tightly as they began to make their way to the courthouse. When the press saw them they surrounded the three men, shouting questions to which Snape replied 'no comment', the typical solicitor answer. It was even hard for Snape to get them through due to all the surrounding media so Harry wrapped his arm around Draco's shoulder, ignoring the comments being shouted at them.
"How did Draco Malfoy get released from jail?"
"Mr. Potter, are you and Draco Malfoy in a relationship?"
They finally made their way inside and Snape went off. Harry and Draco made their way inside the crowded courtroom and took a seat, ignoring the stares and whispers. Harry glanced to the other side of the room and saw Narcissa and Lucius Malfoy. Narcissa was looking straight ahead, but Harry knew she was aware of their presence. Lucius was glaring at both men and when he caught Harry looking he turned his head sharply.
The proceedings didn't last too terribly long and soon they were back at Snape's.
Later that night Draco sat in the bathtub, his knees underneath his chin with his arms wrapped around him. Harry sat across from him, leaning back against the tub, knees slightly bent.
"What if I have to go back?" Draco asked quietly.
Harry knew what he meant and he didn't want to think about it. Having Draco here with him was amazing and he couldn't find words to describe how elated he felt.
"I won't leave you," Harry replied. He knew it was a possibility that Draco could go back; they both did. "And we'll appeal the case. Just know I'm not going to leave you, Draco. Even if I have to marry you in a jail, I would."
At this statement Draco looked up, grey eyes piercing Harry's green ones.
"You mean that? You'd want to marry me? After everything we've been through?"
Harry nodded as he scooted closer towards Draco. He placed his hand on Draco's knee, rubbing it gently.
"Of course. If you ever wanted to. I mean, I know we haven't really been together for very long, even all those years ago, but we both had feelings for each other then and we still do now. I love you, Draco. You being in jail definitely won't stop that."
Draco opened his mouth to say something and then closed it. He opened it once more and Harry laughed. Finally, with a smile, he was able to speak.
"I'd love to marry you and I love you too. More than anything."
Draco leaned over and kissed Harry softly, his hands pulling Harry's head closer. Harry maneuvered his body so he was on his knees and he kissed Draco back, his hand going lower to grasp Draco's cock. When Draco gasped Harry grinned at him.
"I think it's time to dry off and move to the bedroom, don't you?"
"Yes," Draco answered breathily and with that they both moved quickly out of the bathtub and into the bedroom.
"Listen Snape," began Kingsley Shacklebolt. It had been a week since the ending trial of the last Death Eater. Both men had just finished meeting with Judge Bones and neither were too happy with what she had to say. "You heard what Bones said. We have a week to bring up anything else we need to and after that the jury makes their decision. I haven't found anything on Lucius Malfoy and I've been looking."
Snape sighed, closing his eyes and rubbing the bridge of his nose. This case was nothing like anything else he had ever worked on and it was the hardest thing he had ever done.
"I know. I've tried to persuade Narcissa Malfoy to help, but she's scared of Lucius. If we don't find anything within the next three days I'll notify Bones to put Draco on the stand and that's all we can do. I do appreciate what you've done though Kingsley."
Kingsley's mouth was a firm line and he only nodded at Snape before leaving. Now it was back to more research.
The phone rang and after a few rings, Snape rolled his eyes. It figured that the other two men currently living in his home wouldn't answer it. They were probably too busy canoodling or some other such nonsense.
"Hello, Severus," drawled Narcissa Malfoy on the other line. "How are you?"
"Stressed and busy," replied Snape. He was irritated with the woman since she had been no help whatsoever with the case and he did not have time to chat idly.
"Oh that's too bad. Lucius and I would love to have you over for dinner at the manor one evening once the case is over."
Snape gritted his teeth at the women's nonsensical chatting. "Wonderful, Narcissa, but really, I must be going."
"Yes, I'm sure," she said. She paused and, as if in thought, she asked, "Have you had anything interesting come in the mail lately, Severus?"
Snape frowned at the question, pausing himself to think. "No. Why?"
"I've found some interesting things coming through the mail lately. Really, you must look at it more closely, but I'll let you go. Good evening, Severus."
Snape heard the click of the receiver on the other end and then the line went dead. He still clasped the phone to his ear for a few moments after she had hung up.
Really, he did not understand that woman sometimes.
On the third day Snape was resigned to the fact that neither he nor Kingsley Shacklebolt were going to find anything else on Lucius Malfoy and that Draco would have to testify to reiterate the fact that he didn't commit the crimes. At breakfast that morning both Harry and Draco eyed him warily, clearly seeing that he was testy and not in a good mood.
"I would ask how you are, but I already know the answer," said Harry. Snape glared at him.
"It would help us greatly if your mother could be of some help," Snape said, addressing Draco. "Unfortunately she's not willing to go against your father in such a public way such as testifying. She did call me the other night though. She said the strangest thing, about checking my mail."
Draco shrugged as he cupped his mug of steaming coffee. He and Harry were leaning against the counter, facing Snape who was sitting at the table.
"She used to always talk to me in riddles when I was younger. I hated it, but she thought it made me more intelligent, logical, so she used to say." Both men left the kitchen shortly after, leaving Snape to think about Narcissa Malfoy's words.
Kingsley Shacklebolt sat in his office chair, preparing questions to ask Draco Malfoy for when he went on the stand. He and Snape hadn't been able to find anything else on Lucius Malfoy so the only thing left was to question Draco Malfoy and then let the jury make their decision.
"Shacklebolt, it's Snape." Kingsley sat up a little in his chair at the urgency in Snape's voice. "Get a warrant to search Lucius Malfoy. I already have one processing for Sofia Beauchant."
"What?" asked Kingsley sharply. "Why?" Kingsley could practically feel the smirk across the phone when Snape replied.
"I believe I've discovered something."
Snape knew Judge Bones was probably furious with him since he had to ask that he was allowed an extended week because he was investigating things further. Judge Bones told him this would be the last time on this case he was allowed an extension and he was positive he wouldn't need another one.
When he discovered them he knew he hit the jackpot. Of course this threw things off, but really, neither he nor Kingsley were complaining. Now all he had to do was fly back to the UK, meet with Kingsley and Judge Bones and things would be on their way. It was exactly as he was hoping for.
They were once again in the car on their way to the courthouse. Harry hadn't been expecting a trial and either had Draco since they knew that Snape had gotten it delayed an extra week. There were only a couple of reporters at the courthouse, but for once they were not surrounding them, instead they were covering another case. When they walked into the courtroom on one side sat Narcissa Malfoy and a few other supposed Death Eater families. Other than that the room was empty.
Snape and Shacklebolt walked in, resuming their posts behind their tables. Moments later Judge Bones followed suit and sat down.
"Well," she announced. "It appears we have quite the turn of events here which calls for re-evaluation of some witnesses. We'll start with your witness, Mr. Shacklebolt."
Draco turned his head slightly and leaned towards Harry, whispering in his ear. "Do you have any idea what's going on?"
Harry shook his head. "I've no clue." They turned their attention back to Shacklebolt who was standing and announcing his witness.
"The prosecution calls Sofia Beauchant to the stand." Harry and Draco glanced at each other before looking to where the bailiff was bringing in Sofia Beauchant.
The young woman had not once attended another trial after she first took the stand. She still appeared the same even after a couple months. Her hair was straight and she wore a cream knee length skirt and cream sweater with a stylish gold broach at the top. She smiled politely at Kingsley although the man did not smile back at her.
"Ms. Beauchant, you were at Parliament on the night of May 29, 1997, correct?"
"And you are positive that you saw Draco Malfoy and not Lucius Malfoy pull the trigger?"
Sofia nodded her head firmly. "I'm positive."
"No further questions."
The room was silent as Kingsley made his way back to his seat and Snape rose. He looked too smug for his own good and Harry had a feeling that something major was going to happen by the man's expression.
"Do you write letters, Ms. Beauchant?"
The question caught Sofia off guard and she frowned at Snape.
"Not usually. I find other means of communication faster."
"Of course," Snape said, not quite able to hold back a sneer. "But you have before, yes?"
"Had you met the Malfoys before May 29, 1997?"
Sofia's eyes flickered towards where Narcissa Malfoy sat.
"I had met them maybe six months before hand. Well I had met Lucius and Narcissa. Mr. Malfoy works with Parliament and there was a dinner party held one evening at our house in France. The Malfoys attended."
"So you've never met Draco Malfoy before?"
Sofia shook her head and replied with a 'no.'
Snape gave a nod while walking slowly in front of where the witness sat.
"You had contact with Lucius Malfoy after that though, correct?"
Sofia's eyes widened slightly, but she shook her head.
Snape paused and stopped walking, looking 'surprised' at her words.
"Really?" He walked back towards his table and produced several pieces of paper. He handed one over to Sofia. "Ms. Beauchant, if you could please read the highlighted parts out loud for the court."
Sofia glanced over the letter and paled visibly, but said nothing.
"Ms. Beauchant," said Snape. She glanced up and then looked back down at the letter.
"December 3rd, 1996," she began, her voice somewhat shaky. "Dear Mr. Malfoy. I've thought about your proposition into joining the Death Eater organization. I'm willing to travel to London over my holiday break, which begins December 17th, to meet with you and several other members. I've already told my parents I'm staying at school over the holidays so there should be no trouble. I can't wait until I meet with you and can officially begin doing things for this wonderful organization. Sincerely, Sofia Beauchant."
During the process of reading the letter Harry's mouth had dropped open and he heard Draco gasp. This was totally unexpected.
"Ms. Beauchant, from this letter it appears that you planned to become a Death Eater?"
"Yes," she began, "but I -," She was cut off by Snape.
"Here is another letter," he said, producing another sheet of paper for her to read. "Please read the highlighted areas."
She never looked up at Snape or anyone else as she read the letter. "January 2nd, 1997. Dear Lucius. Thank you for showing to me how blind I was of our society and introducing me to the Death Eaters. I'm proud that I'm actually part of the organization, even if only you, Bellatrix, and Tom know of it. I promise to uphold my part by informing you all of everything I know from my father. As I said, he is part of Louis Champlain's campaign team and I'll be sure to keep you all updated on that. Sincerely, Sofia."
Snape didn't bother to ask any questions, but merely handed her another sheet of paper. "Once again, read the highlight parts," he instructed. Sofia looked up finally, tears in her eyes, but she said nothing. "March 27th, 1997. Lucius. I know you and Tom need me to find you and some of the other Death Eaters a way into Parliament when Louis Champlain will be there alone. I'm not sure if this is possible since he is always surrounded by people with the upcoming election. I fear that if we were to follow through with the murder then others will have to go down with him. Sincerely, Sofia."
Snape handed her another letter and without any instruction she read.
"May 8th, 1997. Dearest Lucius. Champlain's election team is meeting at the end of the month on May 30th. The meeting will be in the evening when Parliament is nearly empty. This will be the best time for us to go through with it. Love, Sofia. May 16th, 1997. Dearest Lucius. Framing Draco will be an excellent idea if it comes down to someone being caught. I'll be sure to be there to witness it and if I need to I'll say Draco did it. I would never want you to get caught. I have faith in you and the other Death Eaters that this will go smoothly and please don't worry about me. I know what I was getting myself into when I said my father was going to be there that night. I realize the consequences and I know I have to make sacrifices for the organization and this is one of them. It's worth it though. With all my love, Sofia."
Snape raised his eyebrows at the now sobbing girl.
"It appears, Ms. Beauchant, that you and Mr. Lucius Malfoy framed Draco Malfoy and had the murders all planned out." Sofia continued to sob, her shoulders shaking and her hands covering her eyes.
"Ms. Beauchant, answer the question," ordered Madame Bones.
With one last wracking sob she looked up at Snape, her face red with tears. "Yes. Yes, we planned it and framed Draco Malfoy."
Harry and Draco sat in shock and when Draco glanced over at the other family members of the Death Eaters some appeared shocked, while others had impassive looks on their faces. Sofia Beauchant was quickly escorted out, her sobs still echoing through the room. Lucius Malfoy was brought into the courtroom and put up on the stand.
Snape stood and said "No questions Your Honor," and then sat back down.
Lucius had a blank expression on his face and Harry wondered if he realized the turn of events that had just occurred.
"Mr. Malfoy, do you still stand by your story that you first gave?" asked Kingsley Shacklebolt.
The glee on Shacklebolt's face was evident, but Lucius didn't react to it. Kingsley had walked back to his table and retrieved several pieces of paper, just like Snape had.
"Please read the highlighted parts, Mr. Malfoy."
Lucius raised his eyebrows and then began to read. "November 28th, 1996. Dear Miss Beauchant. I was delighted in our intellectual discussion we had at your family's dinner party last weekend and I wanted to follow up on our conversation. Our great leader would love to meet you since I have talked about you highly with him. If -," at this Lucius Malfoy faltered, the first time since the trial began that he showed anything other than a mask of emotions. He clenched his jaw and continued. "You could prove to us that you can be an asset to the Death Eater organization Tom and I would be delighted if you joined. Your position could aid us greatly. If there was any way possible that you could come to London next month to meet us it would be greatly appreciated. Lucius Malfoy."
"Did you meet Sofia Beauchant in the month of November 1996 and discuss the Death Eater organization, Mr. Malfoy?" asked Shacklebolt.
Lucius pursed his lips and Harry was sure he wouldn't have answered unless he was ordered to by Judge Bones.
"Read the highlighted parts again, Mr. Malfoy."
Lucius took the letter from Kingsley and read. "March 3rd, 1997. Dear Sofia. It has become imperative that you find out when Louis Champlain will be in Parliament alone. The other Death Eaters, myself, and Tom have discussed the fact that Champlain needs to be taken down. Please find out when he will be alone at Parliament as soon as possible. Lucius." Another letter was handed to Lucius and without any instruction he began to read.
"May 13th, 1997. My darling Sofia. The news that you last brought to us is wonderful. You are so brave to be going against your father and you will be rewarded for all that you have done. We have planned accordingly and have faith that we will not be caught. We need you to be there in case there is a need for an alibi. Bellatrix, Tom, and the other Death Eaters who will be there with Bellatrix and I have planned to frame my son, Draco, in the case that something goes awry. It will be your word against his and we have no doubt that they will believe you since you were there. I hope you still believe in us, in you and me. Don't let us down now. Love, Lucius."
There was complete silence and Kinsley let it hang there.
"Your Honor," he said, looking at Judge Bones. "No further questions."
Lucius Malfoy was escorted out of the courtroom looking pale and somewhat shaken at the unexpected change of events.
"Counselors," said Judge Bones, looking down at them over her glasses. "I see no reason to bring forward any other witness. I'll give you a recess of fifteen minutes to prepare your final statements." With that she rose and swept out of the room.
People began to move around Harry and Draco as Snape turned to them, smirking.
"I believe, Draco, that you will be granted your freedom." Draco stared back at Snape in shock and nodded. The man stood and left the room and Harry and Draco continued to sit there, not wanting to face the crowd outside.
Fifteen minutes later everyone was back in the room. Snape and Kingsley both gave their final statements to the jury and with that it was dismissed.
"Let's go get some coffee," said Snape to them. Instead of leaving as Harry thought, they went into a waiting room where there was a coffee pot. He poured them each a cup and the three sat in silence.
"It shouldn't take the jury long to deliberate. Perhaps a few hours at most," he said. "And Sofia Beauchant has been taken into custody. She'll have a separate trial." Harry only nodded and held Draco's hand.
Sure enough it was only an hour and a half later when they were called back in. The room was silent as a juror stood to read the jury's verdict. Draco gripped Harry's hand tightly and Harry wrapped his arm around Draco's shoulder to give even more comfort.
The juror looked up at Judge Bones and then back down at his paper before beginning to read. "In the case of Bellatrix Lestrange, we find the defendant guilty." And so the names began to be read off; Avery, Nott, Crabbe, Goyle, and more, all of them guilty. "In the case of Lucius Malfoy, we find the defendant guilty." Harry squeezed Draco's shoulder, but he felt the man beside him tense, knowing that his name was going to be next.
"In the case of Draco Malfoy, we find the defendant not guilty."
Draco's mouth dropped open and Harry grinned, turning in his seat and hugging the shocked blonde next to him.
"I knew it!" he whispered. Draco's shocked grey eyes found Harry's green ones and Harry put his hands on Draco's cheeks. "You're free, Draco. For good, this time."
He leant forward, pressing his mouth against Draco's. It took Draco a moment, but Harry felt the blonde's eyelashes flutter against his cheeks and Draco kissed Harry back enthusiastically. They pulled away from one another, breathing heavily.
"Thank you, Harry," he said. "You believed in me and I can't thank you enough."
Harry hugged the other man, burying his face in the blonde locks that smelled like cucumbers and melon.
"You don't have to, Draco," he said. "You've given me more than I ever asked for."
Even as people moved around them out of the courtroom the two continued to embrace each other. It had been a long journey for them both, with many ups and downs, but they managed to come out of it alive and better than ever. Although the process had been rough, they both knew that they wouldn't change a thing about it because they had found each other again and they found love.
One Year Later
"Potter, you have someone waiting for you."
Harry looked up from his desk where he was reviewing a case file to find Snape looking in his office at him with a scowl on his face.
"I didn't have any meetings today," Harry said. "I wasn't expecting anyone and I'm kind of busy right now."
Snape looked like he just swallowed a lemon as his mouth turned into a dour expression. "You'll want to see him." With that he turned around and left the doorway, leaving Harry confused.
It had been a little over a year since the trial had finally ended. Lucius had been been given a sentence of life imprisonment with the chance of parole in thirty years. Six months later Sofia Beauchant had been convicted of premeditated murder and sentenced to eight years in prison.
Harry and Draco had stayed in London with Snape while Harry helped out at Snape's law firm. Draco had taken the time to enjoy his freedom and he had even met with Narcissa a few times since Lucius' imprisonment. Although Draco had encouraged his mother to divorce his father after everything, she had refused saying that when she married Lucius she made a vow that it would be forever and she would stick by that.
When summer had come Draco and Harry had moved to Cambridge while Harry finished up his last semester of law school. Draco had gotten a job on campus assisting a finance professor and when the semester had ended Harry had been surprised at the phone call he received from Snape asking him to join his firm in London. Harry and Draco had agreed to it and a few weeks before Christmas they were moved into their own flat in London.
Now it had been three months since their move back to London and things had never been better. Harry had a job he loved, even if his boss was snarky Snape, but he knew he could handle him, and Draco was hired at a local university as an accounting professor.
Harry had resumed looking over his case file and evidence when there was a knock on the door. He looked up and immediately a grin appeared on his face. Standing in the doorway was his gorgeous blonde boyfriend in a navy blue dress shirt and silver tie.
"Draco! I thought you had advising meetings today," Harry said. He stood up and stretched, watching his boyfriend walk further into the room and shut the door.
"My last one ended early," Draco said, throwing his coat on a brown faux leather chair. "So I decided to come here and surprise you."
Harry was now standing in front of Draco and he pulled on the man's belt loop, pulling his even closer so they were touching.
"And what a wonderful surprise it is," he murmured. He leaned forward and captured Draco's lips in a kiss, moving his hands to Draco's hips so he could tug him even closer.
Draco pulled away slightly and smirked.
"Someone's excited to see me," he said, his hand snaking down to press against Harry's erection. Harry groaned, his eyes fluttering closed. Draco's smirked widened. "I was thinking of taking you out for lunch," he began. "But perhaps dinner might be better? You look more delicious anyway."
"Draco. Stop teasing."
"Who said I was teasing?"
Harry opened his eyes to see Draco's intense grey eyes staring at him.
"Did you lock the door?" Harry asked, already moving to undo his own tie.
Draco grinned, looking satisfied as if he were a cat who just ate a canary. "I was already a step ahead of you, dear."
They both began to undress and Harry had no qualms that he was about to have sex with his boyfriend in his office. After all, it wouldn't have been the first time.
As Harry watched Draco shrug off his shirt, revealing gorgeous pale skin, he knew his life was good and he wouldn't trade it for anyone else's.