Chapter 26 (Epilogue)
Harry sat up in bed like a zombie, or at that hour in the early morning he at least felt like one. He stared at the cold, empty spot in the bed, his fuzzy, tired head finally figuring out that something was missing.
"Damn it", he mumbled and rubbed his face with his hands before he stumbled up through the dark, managing to knock down a few half-full boxes as he went along, grabbing his robe off the hanger by the door.
Harry stumbled through through the corridor, leaving the bedroom door open. He was probably in the basement, where they'd set up his potions lab or work room or whatever they could call it. Whenever he couldn't sleep, that's where he went. Jokingly they had agreed to have it in the basement, because if he blew it up the (surprisingly expensive) house wouldn't be too harmed. (Mostly it was because they'd both imagined a nursery on the top floor, and the basement was as far as possible from any dangerous substances, but they hadn't said that out loud.)
Harry slowly droned down the stairs and stopped in the kitchen to grab some of the freshly made coffee there. They had only lived here a few days, but the coffee pot had been the first to get unpacked.
He made his way down to the door to the cellar under the stairs and didn't bother to be quiet about it. They didn't have a lot of neighbors anyway, so.
Snape was huddled over some notes by the flickering candle light that Harry really didn't think could be good for your eyes. He didn't notice when Harry walked in, so Harry coughed slightly and he snapped his eyes up.
"I thought you were going to tell me when you couldn't sleep", Harry said with a small smile, as he leaned against the desk.
"I didn't see any reason why I should keep both of us awake", Snape said and scribbled down one last note before he let the quill levitate back into place.
"Don't be an idiot. What was it this time?" Harry asked and Snape shook his head.
"Nothing, just..." Snape leaned back in his chair. "You left me in the Shrieking Shack and I was dying."
"But I came back, didn't I?" Harry said with a small smile.
"Yes. Yes, you did", Snape said and with that sweet look on his face, Harry couldn't help kissing him.
He put the coffee cup down on the flat wooden desk and sat next to it, so that he had one leg on each side of Snape's chair, Snape trapped in it.
"So", Snape kissed the inside of Harry's left thigh, "what's the schedule for today?"
"The family's coming over to check out the house, so we have to spend the morning cleaning out all the boxes and putting them away", Harry said. They had slipped into calling the Weasleys, Sirius, Amanda, Remus Moon, Hermione, Ginny, Draco etc. just 'the family', since it just got too long to say all those names.
"Oh, very exciting", Snape said, leaning his head against Harry's leg. "Nothing else?"
They had made an interview that would be in the paper this morning, but Harry didn't mention it. They didn't get the paper yet anyway.
"Nothing, so we could just go back to bed? If you want?" Harry asked but Snape just closed his eyes and kept his head leaned against Harry. "Or we could stay here..."
"Isn't there something else we need to do today?" Snape asked and Harry squeezed his eyes together as he remembered.
"Right, the gala thing. But that isn't until tonight", Harry said and his stomach tightened a little. He had been dreading this night. He'd never liked big crowds and award shows and all that. This one was going to be held in memory of the people who died in the war, on the third year anniversary of the Battle of Hogwarts, so it wasn't a happy occasion either.
"Can't we stay at home?" Snape asked and Harry gave a small laugh.
"No", he mumbled and Snape shifted against his leg.
"Why not? I don't enjoy listening to old men babbling about the war like it's something admirable and neither do you. And besides", Snape said, giving a suggestive kiss to Harry's leg, "we could have better things to do."
"You're bribing me with sex? Really?" Harry asked and Snape smiled. "No, we have to go. We'll just have to get through it."
"And how do you suggest we get through it?" Snape asked, one of his dark eyebrows raised in question.
"Well, I'm planning on getting very, very drunk on firewhiskey", Harry said, figuring that was a pretty good plan.
Snape smiled. "Well. You're a sweet drunk. I'm not."
Harry agreed. And Snape hadn't drunk any alcohol since Amanda and Sirius' wedding, so it would be stupid to start again now.
"Well, you can think about all the naughty things your sweet drunk will do with you when we get home", Harry said and Snape's smile widened.
"You're bribing me with sex?" Snape mimicked Harry. "Really?"
Harry laughed. "Yes. And I'm not ashamed to admit it."
Snape kissed him again, slowly and languidly and Harry felt absolutely wonderfully happy, for once in his life. No bad memories or thoughts, or thoughts at all really. Just Snape, his slow and easy breathing, his lips moving against Harry's, and the knowledge that Snape loved him and always would.
A/N: The End? Because I have their whole future figured out, with kids and their names and who they marry and what their kids are going to be called. And I have all these sweet scenes figured out and I know all the characters littles stories... Gah! I even made a family tree! (Which I'm thinking about posting on my DeviantArt account, keep a lookout.)
Anyway, I do think this is the end, at least for this kind of story. Maybe I'll do some drabbles, some one-shots of their future life. What do you think? Leave a review/small comment (because this is your last chance!) and tell me what you think and I'll love you even more for it!
I want to thank my friends and dear helpers TimeyWhimey and PurpleDragonFlower who (reluctantly) read a few of my chapters. (Especially TimeyWhimey, who reviewed several times.) And I couldn't have made my spelling improve even a tenth as much if it wasn't for Pages and its spellcheck. What a lifesaver!
And lastly a huge thanks to everyone who read and appreciated and commented on and put my little story on their favorites or alerts list! Every little review make my day, they really do! =)
And after this amazingly long author's note, (240 words) I just hope you all had as good a time reading as I had writing and I hope you'll keep checking out any new stories I might post! / NN