Author's Note: So, after reading xErised's Defiled, I have been reduced to a blubbering mess. Unfortunately, in the midst of that blubbering messiness is when I was inspired to write this chapter so I hope my feelings of inadequacy don't affect my writing of this chapter too much, though I'm convinced they have. But seriously, damnit, read her fanfictions. She/he's loads better than I am. Go! Now! What are you still doing here?

P.S. If by some freak of nature you still want to read my work, it's located below.

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Harry Potter was confused, to say the least. He had awoken, this time in his own bed, to foggy pictures wafting through his mind of Draco Malfoy's body in the showers the day before. He scrunched up his face in disgust and tried desperately to shake it off.Think of anything but Malfoy's arse.Anything. Breasts. Quidditch. His skin was like freshly fallen snow. So white, so pristine. Whatthefuck. Since when am I seventy-five year old woman? His hair. Oh god, his hair. Shutup, brain, shut up!

He wanted more than anything to banish these uninvited thoughts, drive them away for good. He needed time to sort through just what had led to this bizarre change in his perception of Malfoy. Despite the fact that he was a pompous git, he was unquestionably attractive. Really. There was no denying that. Even for a straight bloke. But why did this suddenly affect him to such an extent that he was waking up in the middle of the night with the sheets tented below his waist, trying to vigorously scrub visions of Malfoy's naked body from his memory?

He slipped silently into the showers, as to not wake his other dorm-mates but the moment the water that used to melt his frustrations away began to spray against his chest, he was plagued by visions of another wall of showers, not so different from this very one, and a boy who stood on the opposite wall who was so different, yet so alike to the one who was currently running a soapy hand through unruly, ebony locks. He looked down. He debated it. He really did. Merlin knows he wished he was programmed to think of someone else when taking care of these things.

Let's just say the name he called out wasn't nearly as feminine as it should have been.

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Harry had walked to Potions in a anxious, frantic state with the memory of this morning's shower still fresh in his mind. The last thing he needed at the moment was to be confronted with the one face he was trying to avoid most and naturally, the reality of this happening within the next five minutes was not one he was ready to accept. He stopped at the threshold to catch his breath and, taking one last deep lungful of air, he stepped through the doorway taking long, confident strides. He had, over time - like any observant, completely-not-interested-in-blond-Slytherins, heterosexual male would - memorized where Malfoy sat in relation to the doorway and to his own seat, and today he would train his eyes not to stray in that direction.

Snape stood at the front of the classroom and was, not for the first time, lecturing the class on their inadequate attempts at yesterday's assignment. Harry kept his eyes on the textbook before him, eyes boring through the cover, in a conscious effort to not look in less inviting areas of the room. No sooner had the image of said 'less inviting areas' formed in his mind before his eyes betrayed him.

Malfoy had his head down as he jotted down the notes Snape was writing on the board before him. His sleek, pristine, white-blonde locks fell round his eyes as his quill moved furiously across the page. This seemed to irritate him greatly if the face he was making was any indication, but apparently not enough to brush the offending hair aside with his hand. His full, pale pink lips formed into a relaxed "O" shape as he blew away a strand of platinum-blonde from his forehead.

Harry was consciously aware of just how wrong it was to watch anyone with this much focus and, as if on cue, Draco looked over his shoulder to meet Harry's stare. His pen immediately ceased it's scrawling on the page before him and he crossed his arms, giving Harry his full attention. He looked at Harry with a sort of calm curiosity. Raising an eyebrow questioningly, he didn't appear snide and haughty as usual, but merely observational. His Adam's apple bobbed in his throat as his eyes scanned Harry's features cautiously, before slowly turning his attention back to Snape who was currently firing questions about the properties of gurdyroot at a very startled Neville Longbottom.

Harry knew full well that upon being caught staring at your arch-enemy with probable bedroom-eyes, the most appropriate thing to do would be to find a corner to die of shame in, or at least look elsewhere within 1.5 seconds but for some reason he found it impossible to pry his eyes away. It was a challenge. He could feel it from the moment their eyes met and he was never one to lose to Draco Malfoy. And Malfoy certainly was never one to lose to him. So, why then, had he given up so easily? What was it he found so difficult about looking Harry in the eye for more than a few moments?

"While I admire such dedication that a student would remain after hours to gain more Potions knowledge, I have dismissed your class, Potter." Snape drawled, his lips curling in contemptuous mockery.

This seemed to bring Harry out of his reverie for, after shaking his head, he stood and slung his satchel over his shoulder, heading for the door. He realized a millisecond too late that there was something obstructing his path, and he mistakenly swung his left foot forward, taking another long stride.

And suddenly he felt that unmistakeable, gut-sinking sensation that precedes a fall. Just as he was plummeting face-first to the cold dungeon floor, praying he had the time to cushion the blow, he felt a vice-like grip on his arm suspending him in mid-air and warm, sweet-smelling breath tickling his ear as he was yanked upright.

"Watch yourself, Potter."

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A/N Partie Deux: Thanks so much for reading, but don't you dare stray without leaving a review! I'll cry... maybe. Or something equally awful will happen. Like me suddenly losing all of my inspiration and motivation to continue this story. The choice is yours, Adoring Readers.

With love and squalor,