Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter, JKR does. No profit is being made from this story.

Warning: This story contains explicit sex between the boys. Don't like it - that's what the back button is for.

Author's note: pairings are Draco/Harry(note who's on top), blink-and-you'll-miss-it Ron/Hermione

Then:

"Harry! Yes, Harry! Gods, you feel so good… So good finally wrapped around me…"

"Draco! Oh gods, Draco, harder! Please, harder, take me, oh, just like that – there! Right fucking there! Ah, ah, Draco!"

They fall together exhausted afterwards, Harry's entire body aching from the strain of holding back and then finally able to unleash the tension. He's wrapped in Draco's arms, his face in Draco's neck, basking in the warmth and sated to within an inch of his life.

"I'll owl you later, okay? We'll talk?" He can barely keep his voice from pleading, he has wanted this for so goddamn long. He's not letting Draco go this time, he'll do anything to be allowed to keep this amazing creature that's holding him so close.

"Yes, Harry, we'll talk. I promise."

They tear themselves from each other and dress; they are still on assignment and can't afford to dally any longer. Harry feels the monster in his chest purring in contentment.

Now:

It's almost Christmas, Harry thinks dully. He was meant to be spending it with Draco, he had made such plans that afternoon two months ago. He had let himself believe in something for himself, just his for a change, him and Draco together, the happy companionship he has been craving for most of his life. And then Draco had virtually disappeared. Harry had lost count of how many owls he had sent, how many times he had tried to Floo to Draco's, standing by the fire holding a pinch of Floo powder only to remember he didn't actually know where Draco lived. After two weeks of that, Harry desisted. Let it never be said he couldn't take a hint. He may look thick, but he really isn't. So he buried all his letters in the bottom drawer of his desk in an old tin box and resolved to forget anything had ever happened between them.

Except that he can't. Something in him, the same thing that blindly throws itself at any cause worth fighting for, is refusing to back down. He still has hope that he might be able to swing it yet, get his Draco in the end. Even though he has heard through the grapevine at the Ministry that Draco has been seen out and about with the hot young seeker for the French team, Antoine something, having a grand time. Harry is trying not to be silly about it; 'brokenhearted' is such a strong word after all.

Harry is standing at the counter at Flourish & Blotts, waiting for the exquisite letter writing set to be wrapped up for Hermione. He is idly perusing the other wrapped presents in a pile on one side of the counter, waiting to be picked up by busy shoppers. Seeing that some of them have cards, Harry embarks on a little harmless vicarious thrill, opening a card here and there and seeing messages of love and devotion. His heart squeezes, but he ignores it. Until one card catches his eye and his world shifts slightly.

There, attached to a slim bronze-and-gold package, with no address, in Draco's slightly spiky flowing script, is a lovely gold-and-bronze card:

"I'm a coward. Please forgive me. I think I have fallen in love with you. I'll be coming over to your house tonight, to pose a question to you. I hope you'll say yes. You hold my heart.

Your Draco."

'Well, then, that's that,' a slightly irrational part of Harry's mind thinks, while the rest of it is curling up on itself. It's as though his heart is shrinking, so tight like one of those white dwarf stars that condense to the size of a walnut and then explode into supernovas, taking everything with them. So far, it's still in walnut-phase in Harry's chest.

He has taken on Voldemort, facing down all his fears and doubts, and survived. He has lived through losing so many people. He has survived breaking things off with Ginny, even though it was hardly pretty. Hell, he has even survived the double whammy of telling Ron he's gay and fancies Malfoy. He has survived all that, but right here and now he stands defeated. He wants to wish Draco happiness with Antoine, but the nasty, vindictive truth is that he hopes they make each other miserable. Not a very worthy thought for the Saviour, but there it is.

He hopes he doesn't look like he feels, devastated and broken, and it seems he still pulls a mean poker face because the clerk carries on beautifying the purchase, unaware of the world shattering and remaking itself into something darker and bleaker. Harry waits patiently for the gift to be deemed suitable for presentation – he doesn't have anything better to do and all the time in the world. Actually, that's not a bad idea at all. He'll take some leave of absence. Maybe travel some. It'll be nice to get away for a while, at least until the (he assumes) furore surrounding Draco Malfoy's engagement dies down some, maybe Harry will stay away until the wedding's over and done with. A stray thought enters his head, perhaps he's overreacting? There's many other 'yes' or 'no' questions that couples encounter every day and he does have a history of jumping to conclusions. It doesn't stick around long, faced with the despair that just the thought of Draco getting married to someone else creates.

The present is wrapped at last. Harry maintains his Hero pose, shoulders back, head high, and even manages a smile and a 'Happy Holidays' at the beaming clerk before sedately walking out of the store. He is meeting Hermione for lunch in 15 minutes; he briefly considers making something up and not going but he knows she'll be upset, so he shrinks the package and secures it away in his inner coat pocket, then heads to The Pumpkin Lantern, the new trendy restaurant two blocks away. They have both been there before and enjoy the homely atmosphere and delicious food on offer.

Hermione takes one look at his face and makes him spill everything, lectures him on pining and how it's unattractive, then holds his hand until the food comes out. He tells her about maybe going away for a while, somewhere warm maybe, and she makes him agree to wait until Christmas is over.

"You know how upset Molly will be if you disappear before she can stuff you full of food and wine! And the kids will miss you if you aren't there, you know that."

Harry thinks of Hugo and Rosie's little faces, and feels the weight lift a little. When he manages a proper smile, Hermione seems satisfied. She does make him promise to come to Christmas lunch at The Burrow though, knowing he won't break it. Harry is pleased there are still four days until then, hoping he'll manage to shove off the depression he can feel seeping in by then, at least for a while. Meanwhile he might as well make travel plans. Where's nice at this time of year, he ponders as he makes his way down to Grimmauld Place, Cyprus maybe? Malta's really nice in the winter, he's heard, and everyone does speak English. Yeah, start with Malta, it's still close to home, then maybe try Sicily, which is next door to Malta, and then… well, he's got plenty of time to expand his itinery later on.

He reaches Grimmauld Place just as the sun has set and dusk is falling. It is Harry's favourite time of day; he stops at the small park by the house for a few minutes, trying to breathe. The house is close by, so if a breaking point should be reached salvation is near. To his surprise, his heart may be broken but he can still appreciate the loveliness of the sky in shades of lavender and slowly darkening grey-blue. Strangely, it gives him hope. He may live through this yet.

There is a man standing at the front door, dressed in a fine Muggle camel coat. Harry didn't see him before, so he must have just arrived. Harry's heart skips a beat or two at the shade of the man's hair. There is only one person in his acquaintance that has that colour hair and he makes Harry simultaneously want to kiss him and crawl in bed and die. Draco's pose is rigid, but his fingers twitch in his gloves as he stares at the door knock. He hasn't seen Harry yet; Harry waits to see what he'll do. With a deep breath that seems to reach all the way to his toes, Draco slowly lifts his hand and knocks, four times, then straightens and composes himself. Harry walks over to him, determined to get this over with, whatever it is. Draco whips around when Harry reaches over and tugs on his sleeve.

"I-I though you were home," Draco stammers, his eyes seeming to drink Harry in. Harry's mouth twists into something that might, with some imagination, be called a smile. He pushes past Draco and unlocks the door, then stands aside to let Draco in. He waits to see if Draco will remove his coat, and is surprised when Draco does. He hangs both coats in the closet and gestures for Draco to follow him down the stairs to the kitchen.

"Tea?" Harry offers. When in doubt, make tea. He has learned this at The Burrow and it has served him well. Draco nods and sits in a chair at the kitchen table. Harry busies himself with the tea, at once comforted by the ritual and acutely aware of the man he loves, sitting not three feet behind him. He brings everything to the table, sugar and milk and spoons and cups and the teapot, pouring for them both. Then he sits across from Draco and tries not to stare at him, looking down at the table as a compromise. He starts when Draco finally speaks, voice slightly hoarse.

"You must be wandering why I'm here," he says, after clearing his throat. Harry doesn't look up, sick with longing and trying to hide it.

"I have something for you," Draco continues after the pause stretches to a shade before uncomfortable. Harry watches from beneath his fringe as Draco reaches in his pocket and withdraws… Harry's heart stops. It is the same bronze-and-gold package that destroyed him not three hours ago. Draco's hand is shaking, Harry notes, as he places it in front of Harry who just stares at it, unable to move. After two aborted reaches, Harry is finally able to get his arms working and takes the package up. He re-reads the card, unable to believe this is happening. He is aware of Draco's gaze boring into him as he unwraps the paper to find a wizarding photograph in a gorgeous ivory mother-of-pearl inlaid frame. He remembers the meeting when it must have been taken, although he has no notion of who snapped it, or why. He had been so happy, so optimistic in that briefing to wrap up the case that started everything between them, his heart in his eyes as he looked at a Draco with a small private smile on his face, looking back at Harry. There are other people in the background but he can barely take his eyes off the two of them. He sees what might have been in that one shot, and he doesn't understand why Draco is giving him this.

"It was snapped by one of your stalkers, the Unspeakable secretary, you know the one." At Harry's wince, he goes on, "she gave it to me yesterday. Said I was an idiot and to get my head on straight, go find you and beg you to take me back. Her words, not mine," he clarifies when he sees Harry's astonished look.

Draco looks him straight in the eye, and says, "I'm sorry. I panicked. It was too fast, and it was you, and I didn't know what to think. I couldn't believe you meant it, not after everything I'd done, everything that had been done to you by me, my family and their beliefs. I instructed the house elves to turn away your owls, I moved into my London flat and I tried to get you out of my head. That didn't work so well. I must have slept with twenty men in a month, and yet every time I came I'd shout your name. I'm starting to get a reputation, it will not do at all. Then I saw that picture, and all I could think about was how much I wanted to spend Christmas with you, just you and me in bed and on the sofa, watching stupid telly or cooking, or… other things." A faint blush covers Draco's cheekbones and Harry is charmed all over again. He waits; Draco is plainly not done yet.

A deep breath, eyes flickering to capture Harry's, Draco continues in a small voice, "I hope you'll take me back. That is the question I wanted to ask you. I know that technically we never were together but for that day and a half, but I want us to be. I want us to give this a chance. I promise to suspend disbelief and just take things as they come, and I promise to trust that you want me for me, and not be an idiot. Well, no more than usual. …Um, Harry? You're not saying anything. I should probably go, I don't want to pressure you into anything, just take your time, and I hope you get back to me soon and put me out of my misery one way or another, um, thanks for the tea, I'll find my own way ou…"

Kissing Draco is everything Harry remembers it to be and more. This time it's for keeps and Harry is not about to let go for some time, maybe ever. He twists his fingers in that soft, soft hair and pulls Draco deeper into the kiss, tongues twisting and caressing, lips sliding wetly together, Draco's body plastered to his from lips to toes, and he's missed this more than he could possibly articulate, and the bedroom is too far away.

"Hold on," he whispers into Draco's mouth as he tightens his arm around his waist and Apparates them both up to his bedroom.

He doesn't think he can stop kissing Draco, but he must have because all their clothes are gone, they are both on the bed and Harry has two blissful slicked-up fingers up his arse while Draco is sucking almost viciously on his right nipple. Harry is making the most obscene sounds, begging Draco to take him now. Harry would be astounded that such filthy please are falling from his mouth if Draco hadn't disabled every rational capacity with those wicked fingers stretching him open. Draco finally shimmies back on top of him, his gorgeous wet cock just nudging Harry's relaxed opening. Harry can only wordlessly tug him closer so that he slips fully inside, stroking Harry's passage, balls slapping Harry's arse as he is finally, deliciously full once more. Draco stops there to let him breathe and Harry can only pant in Draco's ear as he holds tight to his biceps and makes his muscles adjust.

Eventually he shifts under Draco and tells him in no uncertain terms to 'move, goddamn it, or else!' And boy, does Draco ever. Harry repeatedly loses his breath on long moans and deep sighs as he is filled over and over. He literally writhes under Draco, encouraging him to take what is his, claim Harry for his own. He relishes Draco's forceful thrusts, heated pants and scorching kisses as he tugs Harry's hips ever closer, Harry's dripping cock squeezed between their abdomens. Harry is overwhelmingly hard, so close to the edge that Draco's deadly accurate thrust at just the right angle spills him over into blissful climax. His passage pulses, milking Draco's own orgasm from him and he surrenders with a deep groan.

Sweaty, exquisitely content, Harry curls into Draco who has slumped, panting, to Harry's side, sated cock slipping from his entrance with a filthy squelch. They cling to each other, neither ready to let go. This time it's Draco's turn to burrow his nose into the crook of Harry's neck and inhale deeply, his exhale tickling Harry's shoulder.

Harry tries not to let his voice shake when he asks, "Will you stay with me?"

He figures he hasn't been too successful as Draco cuddles him closer and murmurs in his ear, "Yes, Harry. Tomorrow morning and the morning after, and the morning after that, and the morning after that. And then I figure we'll have to move in together because I can't bear to be apart from you any longer than is absolutely necessary. About the duration of a bathroom break should be your guidance here."

He kisses the sensitive skin below Harry's ear tenderly. Harry feels almost ridiculously happy as he curls further into Draco. It's strange, he muses, how one day can go through such extremes – from a broken-hearted implosion to such utter contentment. As their breathing slows and they slowly drift to sleep wrapped in each other's arms, Herry's sated mind ponders gently that he probably should tell Draco about his thoughts from earlier today.

He smiles goofily. He'll start tomorrow, with Malta. He hears it's lovely there this time of year.

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