One Thousand Pearls

By Rice-Ball247

Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter or any affiliated characters. They are the work of J.K. Rowling and I make no profit. This story was based off the manga 'Mister Mermaid' by Setona Mizushiro, which in turn, was based off the classic, 'The Little Mermaid', which I'm sure most of you are familiar with.

Warning: slash (boy x boy) and het (boy x girl), nothing graphic, mermen/maids, OOC, AU.

Thanks to: Maurauders-And-Lily-I-Love, for being an amazing beta to this story. You've done me a great favour in correcting, advising and revising my work.

Rice-Ball247: This is the final chapter. I encourage you to please review and look forward to seeing you at later works and, most likely, a sequel.

Chapter Three: And His Tears

"Young Prince, why do you summon me?"

Harry kept his gaze firmly on the great sorcerer, Albus Dumbledore, his eyes unblinking from the elderly man's steady sight.

"I wish to go to the Land of Man. There is... someone I want to see."

Harry zoned out as he gazed at Draco eating his breakfast, sipping the coffee that Harry had made for him. Emerald eyes trailed over the blond, taking in the aristocratic features of his face. He was drawn out of his thoughts when the blond man cleared his throat. "Ahh, Harry. This morning, in bed? There were all these pearls scattered around the sheets. I know it may seem like a stupid question, but are they yours?"

'My tears…' the thought flitted quickly through his head, before he pushed it away and shook his head quickly. Strangely, Draco's face twisted into an even more puzzled expression as he finished up his breakfast.

"I thought not. A bit bizarre, but okay."

Harry merely gave him a shy smile, to which Draco returned. His heart quickened at the sight of Harry's bright, iridescent eyes and quickly lifted his mug of coffee to hide the sudden suffusion of pink across his cheeks. Harry tilted his head adorably in question but didn't offer any comment, his notebook remaining in his pocket.

Once they had finished, Harry took the plates to the sink obediently and began to wash them by hand. He nearly dropped a plate in surprise when he felt Draco come up from behind him and snake his arms around his waist, his sharp chin resting in the junction between Harry's neck and shoulder.

"I'm going out for a bit. I'll be back later, okay?" his voice was soft, gentle, and that fond tone made Harry's heart race a little faster.

Harry nodded and blushed when he felt Draco press a chaste kiss against his cheek. Draco pulled away and began to walk towards the door. Harry followed him, smiling and waving when Draco turned back once he'd reached the footpath.

"I'll be back soon!"

Harry took in the sight of his retreating back, of the strong, broad shoulders that seemed to carry an unfair burden. For a moment, Harry wondered if Draco had been cursed with a spell of loneliness. Perhaps...


"I'm back!" Draco sang as he waltzed through the front door, carrying a bottle of very expensive wine. Harry stared at the bright glee in his eyes, wondering if maybe perhaps this was happiness. He certainly seemed like he had not a worry in the world to care for.

Harry questioned him with his eyebrows raised in curiosity, to which Draco took his hand and spun him across the floor haphazardly, eyes shining with childlike excitement. "Haha! Remember those pearls I asked you about this morning? I took them to a jeweller and had them appraised. They were worth a lot! He said they're of an extremely rare quality that hasn't been seen in years. So I figured we could treat ourselves tonight, and move out of this slum this week!

We can start anew, in the city, maybe. We have a lot of money now, thanks to these," he held up a small, red velvet pouch that still looked reasonably full. Harry wondered at the irony that was his life – the price of his tears had bought Draco money, happiness even. "We could start our own restaurant, maybe move to Paris! We'd have lots of business in Paris, wouldn't we?"

Harry could only smile and nod along with Draco, ignoring the sinking feeling in his chest.


The warm spray felt great against his skin, and Harry let out a content sigh as he relaxed under the weight of water from the shower. He was, for some unknown reason, still completely dressed and had left the door open, so he wasn't surprised when he saw Draco watching him from the doorway, his eyes betraying an odd emotion.

"You know, now that I think about it, you must really love the water," he said softly as he stepped into the bathroom. Stopping at the edge of the large shower, he watched as Harry turned back to the showerhead and held his face up to the water. In doing so, he missed the sorrowful expression that flitted briefly across Draco's face. Harry breathed in sharply when he felt Draco press against his back and gently kiss the nape of his neck.

He would have moaned if he could, and settled instead, for resting his head against Draco's shoulder. The kisses turned to small nips and sucks until he could feel Draco against him, panting, pushing him up against the shower wall.

"The night I met you," Draco whispered as Harry gazed up at him with hazy eyes, "I took you in, because you looked so sad. Like a Lunar Maiden, that had been abandoned by the moon."

Draco pressed his lips to Harry, and the boy was unsure if it was the water or Draco's tears that tasted slightly salty. "It's so strange," Draco murmured as he pulled away, his forehead against Harry's, "Even though you're with me, no matter what I do, or say, you're never tainted."

They remained silent under the shower for a moment longer, "It's as if you're protected by something. It shields you, hides you away. Even though I..." his voice petered off as Harry heard the blood pound in his ears once again, blocked by the sound of the shower and water rushing against his eardrums. "... you so much."

That night while Draco slept beside him, Harry sat up in bed and watched as the waxing gibbous moon appeared after being concealed behind heavy clouds. With the knowledge that his time was already overdue, Harry fell into fitful sleep, afraid that the magic spell that pulled him towards Draco would soon break under the heartless gaze of the next full moon's light.


The next morning was overcast. Harry could already feel the gloom of the day set in. Tonight was meant to be a full moon. There was nothing left he could do for Draco any longer. Astoria had been taken away, but Draco seemed to be going on strong. Perhaps this newfound strength had been the happiness that Draco was looking for? Perhaps money, even? Harry hated to think that Draco would be so shallow as to want happiness from money alone. But there were people like that in the world, weren't there?

'Completely ignoring the fact that he had thrown all of Astoria's mother's money out the window...' Harry reminded himself. Draco had made sure that Harry was fully dressed in warm clothing before taking him outside to help with the shopping. Draco had closed the shop for the day in advance, due to their luck in 'easy money', so that they could relax without having to rush back and forth between the shops and the restaurant.

They were about to leave when they heard a loud sneeze from the alley where they stored their rubbish. Harry was shocked when he ran towards alley and saw a familiar blonde girl shivering and hiding behind the dumpster.

Draco stood stock still for a moment as he stared down at her pathetic form, with nothing on her except for the clothes on her back. "How long have you been here?" he asked her, his voice barely steady.

She looked ashamed at her dirty form and wiped her nose on the sleeve of her sweater, "Um... I left home yesterday, and arrived here at dawn... but," she began to tear and sniffed loudly, "I was so afraid to bother you, that I just stayed here."

Draco stepped forward, his lip curled in irritation at her snivelling. "Enough! Stand up, and come inside where it's warm."

Astoria nodded and stood up on sore, shaky legs. Harry could see that her feet were blistered – she had probably taken off her shoes from the pain of travelling so far. Draco's face was stoic, emotions carefully hidden, patiently waiting until she had staggered to her feet and took a step forward.

Then Draco's cold mask fell and he grasped her arm and snatched her towards him, burying his face into the crook of her neck. "Astoria... Astoria, how I've missed you."

'Perhaps this was the happiness that Draco was looking for?'

Harry watched as they embraced, Astoria sobbing into Draco's chest as she apologised over and over again, promising that she would never leave, not if she could help it. For the first time, Harry saw the most beautiful smile grace Draco's lips.

'He was looking for love?'


"You don't understand! When mermen love, their love is deep. Humans are fickle and selfish! They will take advantage of your love! You will only be hurt!"


"Young Prince, why do you summon me?"

Harry kept his gaze firmly on the great sorcerer, Albus Dumbledore, his eyes unblinking from the elderly man's steady sight.

"I wish to go to the Land of Man. There is... someone I want to see."

"The legs of man will only cause you great pain, my Prince."


"Do you know what you ask of me, young Prince?"

Harry kept his head bowed respectfully, his tone contrite as he rephrased his command to a request, "I apologise, Sorcerer Dumbledore. Please, I beg of you, free me from captivity at the Palace. Grant me a life above The Surface, please!"


'I don't care if it hurts. As long as I can see that Draco is happy... I don't care if it hurts.'


"Hey Harry," Astoria called to him where he sat by the kitchen table later on that day. She was baking something for their dessert that night. "We were thinking of moving to another town, since..."

"Since we don't know if they'll be coming back for us, or not," Draco finished for her, wrapping an arm around her shoulders as she smiled up at him. "We don't want to presume, but we'd hope that you'd come with us."

Harry shook his head slowly, and then turned back to his mug of tea when Astoria excitedly began to make plans. She and Draco were constantly coming up with new places to go to, talking about exciting cities they would visit and more of the world out there that was just waiting for them to explore. He didn't notice Draco's crestfallen countenance towards his response, unaware of the faded smile or dimmed eyes.

But Harry had no part in it. They wouldn't miss him anyway.

'My wish has already been granted,' he gazed upon Draco's smiling face and felt as if his broken heart had lifted considerably. Broken, yes, but lifted nonetheless.

As the hours passed, the sun had set and the full moon was steadily rising. The time for him to leave was rapidly approaching. As nightfall came, Harry found himself at the beach, standing knee-deep within the waves. He could smell the rain coming and he basked in the feel of the ocean swelling around him.

"You know, no one comes to this small town without a reason," Harry nearly stumbled when he heard Draco's voice. Of course, the sand had softened Draco's footsteps so he had not heard him approaching. "And I've never asked you your reason for being here – who you are, why you've come, where you came from – I know nothing about you," But I want to. Draco paused when Harry merely turned away from him and stared back over the sea, "Are you going to be okay? Without us, I mean."

Harry nodded his head slowly and gave the moon a wistful smile. It was his doorway between the palace and his home; between his family and his love. Draco stood firmly by the shoreline as he asked, "But do you have somewhere to go home to?"

Turning on the spot, Harry pointed to the sea. Draco frowned, puzzled by the meaning of Harry's action, "Overseas? Across the sea?"

Harry shook his head.

"In the sea...? The... the ocean?" Harry gave a so-so shake of his head, then jabbed his finger at the ocean again. "The ocean... ocean depths?"

Harry nodded eagerly, a happy smile that somehow hurt, lighting up his features as Draco stared at him with a mix of shock and disbelief. "I-impossible. You can't live there! How will you- hey! Hey where are you going?" Draco called to him when Harry suddenly turned and began to wade further into the water until it was up to his waist. "Harry, stop!"

Draco grabbed Harry's wrist and spun him around to face him, trying to quell the way his heart had suddenly leapt to his throat when Harry moved away. And he was shocked by what he saw. No words could describe the look of amazement on his face as he watched Harry cry, as he felt Harry cup his hands together so that dozens, hundreds of tiny pearls began to fall from Harry's eyes. Some plopped back into the sea, most of them caught between the cradle of Draco's hands.

It made Draco think back to another fairytale that his mother had told him as a child. About the mermaid who cried a thousand pearls for the man she loved. And when she had given up all her pearls, she had died.

Now that Draco thought about it, Harry had cried two thousand, just for him. Draco felt the weight of Harry's pearls, Harry's tears, in his hands and stared at the ocean with unseeing eyes. Harry had disappeared when he had been staring at the pearls in his hands. He didn't notice when droplets of rain began to fall into the ocean around him; he didn't notice when his vision began to blur.

'I'm crying,' he thought helplessly as tears mingled with the sudden downpour. 'Harry...'

He didn't notice when Harry's tears fell into the ocean from his slackened hands, too busy occupied by the suffocating, aching feeling in his chest.


Draco took one last glance around the building that had been his home and his restaurant for the past two years. It had been hard to get where he was, but this time, he felt like he had to move on; move on to newer and greater things. He couldn't be stuck here, in this small town, forever.

"Are you ready to get going?" Draco asked, as Astoria did a final check of all the rooms. She nodded her head when she returned and hoisted her backpack over her shoulder.

"It's weird seeing it so empty. Are you sure you didn't leave anything behind?"

Draco didn't answer that question as he turned and headed towards the door. He held it open for Astoria and then locked it for the final time. Astoria stood by the steps, her hand outstretched for him to take.

"Where do we plan on going?" she asked, smiling as he took her hand in his.

"I don't know. But it will be somewhere by the water, maybe. Where we can see the ocean, and be seen from the ocean," he answered honestly. She shot him a quizzical look, which he ignored, then looked out at his view from the cliff-face for the final time.

But not the last time, Harry. This isn't goodbye. I'll see you again. This is not...

The End

Rice-Ball247: Thank you for staying with me for these three chapters. One Thousand Pearls is finally complete. I hope by now that you understand the significance of the pearls, especially the title. If you have any final questions, I will try to answer them in a review reply. If there is a recurring question, I will post it here.

Sequel? I know the ending was a little ambiguous. I had an idea for another mermaid story, where Draco is a mermaid crown prince and he drags Harry to his kingdom to -coughmakehimhisbridecough-. But... then I thought, perhaps I'll just make a sequel to this, where Draco-- and Harry-- well. I'll leave that idea for another time. See you all, hopefully at one of my other stories!