Summary: It's fifth year, and Harry's keeping a secret. Can Neville find out what it is? Slash, cute and fluffy, one-shot.
Warnings: Fifth year. NevilleXHarry, boy-on-boy. NO LIKE, LEAVE. Cute and fluffy, not anything hardcore.
A/N: I know I usually put this at the end, but I don't care. This is the oneshot request from catdemon5! She won the contest I had on being the first to translate my greeting and farewell correctly. :) She then requested a NevilleXHarry one-shot, something cute. And so I deliver. I have to say, I've never really thought much about the pairing, and I don't think that I'm going to become a rabid fan from this, but I had fun writing this and I hope you all enjoy!
"Just back off, Ron! I told you, I don't need your pity!"
Neville winced at his roommates escalating voice. Ron and Harry were at it again, but this argument sounded worse then the ones they'd been having recently.
"I'm not trying to give you my pity!" Ron cried, indignant. "I'm trying to help you, Harry!"
"Well you're not doing a very good job, now are you?" Harry's voice lowered significantly, sounding cold. "I don't need to go to Dumbledore. I don't need to go to anyone!"
"You should! You can't let that…that horrid woman do this to you!"
"I don't need you acting like my mother!" A crash sounded from the dorms. Seamus glanced to Neville. It sounded like glass shattering.
"Reckon we should go in there?" he murmured, wincing as another crash came.
Neville shook his head. "Ron said to stay out here unless we heard spells."
Seamus shrugged. "Alright, then."
"Well someone has to!" Ron shouted furiously. "It's not like you have one to teach you right from wrong!"
Silence ensued Ron's outburst. Neville and Seamus exchanged a shocked look. Never once had either ever heard Ron or Hermione mention Harry's orphaned state, no matter how heated their rows got. Neville felt a pang of pity for Harry. Even though his parents were still alive, it often felt as if he were orphaned himself. It was what made him feel like there was a certain bond between him and Harry - they were the only two in Gryffindor without parents.
"Sod off, Weasley." Harry's voice was deadpanned.
There were footsteps, then Ron opened the door and brushed past the two Gryffindors.
"He's angry." Ron muttered, bright pink from anger and shame at what he had said. "Leave him alone, he'll come 'round when his temper's down."
Seamus shrugged, and started to follow Ron down the stairs. He paused when Neville didn't follow.
"I'm gonna check on Harry." Neville said quietly.
"You sure, mate?" Seamus sounded slightly concerned. "You might get hexed."
Seamus shrugged again, and ran down the stairs to catch up with Ron. He'd probably get Dean and Ron's brothers to play a game of Exploding Snap to distract the youngest Weasley boy after he relayed the row to Hermione.
Neville took a deep breath, and carefully pushed the door to the fifth year boy's dormitories open. Shattered glass was by the door in an arc, evidence of one of the crashes heard earlier.
"Harry?" Neville called softly. "Harry, you alright?"
Harry sat on his bed - the furthest one from the door - with his back to Neville.
"Go away." he said, rather clearly. He had his head buried in his hands.
"I don't want to." Neville slowly walked up to Harry's bed, but sat instead on the bed next to his. "Are you okay?"
"Bloody fantastic, thanks for asking." Harry said sarcastically. He sounded as if he had something caught in his throat. "Now go away, Neville."
Neville cocked his head to the side, frowning. Harry's shoulders were shaking ever so slightly, and Neville heard a small, strained sound coming from the raven-haired boy.
"Not until you tell me what that row was all about." Neville crossed his arms stubbornly. If Harry was crying, it was because of more than the row with Ron.
Harry looked over his shoulder to give Neville a glassy glare. "If you were eavesdropping properly," he said icily. "Then you would know, now wouldn't you?"
Neville glared back just as efficiently, though startled to see Harry so close to tears. "Most of it was low. I only heard the last bit. Why does Ron want you to go to Dumbledore?"
"None of your fucking business." Harry snapped, still glaring at Neville. His unshed tears were magnified behind his glasses. Neville winced - Harry didn't often curse, and when he did, it was never at Neville.
"Does it have to do with Umbridge?" Neville continued to press lightly. "What's she done to you, Harry?"
Harry scowled, and once again turned his back completely to his fellow dorm mate. He refused to answer Neville's question.
Neville sat quietly, content to wait until Harry would talk to him. Twenty minutes later, Harry sighed deeply.
"You're not going to leave, are you?" he asked, defeated.
Neville shook his head. He then realized that Harry couldn't see him, and voiced his opposition.
"No, I'm not."
Harry sighed again, and turned around to face Neville. He still wore his school uniform, though it was usual for students to change at the immediate end of the school day on Fridays. His robe lay in a pile on his pillow. Neville had never noticed how bright Harry's eyes were until they were fixed unwaveringly on him.
"What do you want, exactly?" Harry's eyes had dried, and instead they focused on Neville with an unnerving intensity.
Neville uncrossed his arms and instead crossed his legs. "What's going on?" he asked softly.
Harry ran a hand through his hair, messing it up further. "I had detention with Umbridge. Ron didn't like what she made me do."
"What did she make you do?" Neville asked suspiciously. Harry looked alright, without any bruising, and he hadn't been limping earlier.
Harry hesitated. "Lines."
"You're lying." Neville said automatically.
"No, I'm not." Harry was insulted, you could tell from his tone. Harry didn't like to lie to anyone about anything, and took great pride in his honesty.
Neville narrowed his eyes. "Than you're not telling all the truth. Ron wouldn't freak out over lines."
Harry bit his bottom lip. Neville nearly blushed when he realized that he thought that the small action was cute. Finally, Harry slowly raised his left hand, palm facing himself. On the back of his hand, written in what Neville recognized to be Harry's messy handwriting, were the words I must not tell lies.
"A Blood Quill." Harry said shortly. "Ron wants me to tell Dumbledore."
"Why won't you?" Neville's heart thundered against his chest with anger. How dare she! A Blood Quill, on students? It was utterly barbaric.
"Because he has more on his mind other than the fact that I spilt a little blood." Harry nearly snarled. "And I won't give her the satisfaction."
"Satisfaction? Harry, this is torture!" Neville was astounded. Yes, Gryffindors were supposed to be brave, but not to the point of complete stupidity! From what Neville knew of Blood Quills, they would leave scars that couldn't ever be healed, not even by magic.
"I don't care." Harry snapped. "It'll only get worse if I go to Dumbledore, because then she'll know she got to me. And if she knows she got to me, the whole school will. I won't let my …story," he nearly spat the word. "Be doubted even further because I'm shown as not being able to stand the punishment given for standing behind the truth."
"B-but Harry!" Neville was scandalized. "You can't - the scars won't heal! This won't ever go away!"
"So I'll learn to never lie." Harry said simply.
Neville stared at him incredulously. "Why?"
"Because if I don't, no one'll stand up to her." Harry looked down at his hands. "And if no one stands up to her, we'll all be subdued into believing Voldemort's not back when he's here and killing people."
Neville sat, stunned. How could Harry shoulder the entire weight of holding up the Wizarding World to himself? How could the Wizarding World let him?
Because it was easier this way, Neville realized. It was easier to let a boy who was willing to take the weight and take care of the problems of the world to actually take care of it, rather than taking care of it themselves. It was simpler to blame everything on him going crazy, because admitting that You-Know-Who was back was going to mean that the adults were going to have to step up.
"You shouldn't have to do this." Neville whispered.
Harry shrugged nonchalantly. "It's what I was born to do." he said, almost bitterly. "I was born to fight Voldemort. I might as well do it right."
A wave of something akin to pity washed over Neville. How was it that a fifteen year old boy thought that his only purpose in life was to kill a maniac?
"What about after?" Harry looked up, startled. He obviously wasn't quite paying attention to Neville.
"What do you mean?" He blinked curiously, and tilted his head to the side. Neville thought it looked adorable. He hadn't realized that Harry was so capable of looking perfectly innocent.
"What about after you kill You-Know-Who? What then?" Neville demanded forcefully.
Harry frowned, as if he'd never considered what he'd do after. "I doubt I'm actually going to kill him, Neville. I'm probably just gonna die trying, like everyone else." An emotion flashed in his eyes, and Neville recognized it as sorrow. It was the same as Neville felt when he thought of his parents.
"So you're just going to give up? You're just going to die?" Neville snapped.
"What else do I have to live for?" Harry sounded genuinely surprised. "I'm supposed to kill Voldemort. What else is the Boy-Who-Lived good for?"
"Whatever the hell you want." Neville stood suddenly and glared down at Harry. "You can't just live to kill someone! That's not living, that's…that's just -"
"Existing?" Harry supplied quietly. "Now do you understand why I'm fighting with Ron about this?"
Neville almost snapped that he didn't understand, but then it hit him. To Harry, he lived to kill Voldemort. Umbridge was trying to take that away from him, and by going to Dumbledore, he'd be admitting that he couldn't handle the one thing he was supposed to do with his life. She was taking away his identity, and Ron wouldn't even let him handle it by himself.
And then Neville finally understood why Harry constantly took it upon himself to fix whatever was wrong with the school.
"I get it." Neville admitted finally. "I get it, but this isn't how it should be."
"It's how it is." Harry said stubbornly. "And I've accepted that. I live to kill Voldemort. If I succeed, if I live…" he shrugged. "I'll think of something then."
Neville sat down again, this time on Harry's bed. He put his hands on Harry's shoulders, forcing the raven to look at him.
"Shouldn't you have something now?" Neville asked quietly. "So that you have something to fight for?"
"I fight for my friends." Harry replied. "I fight for the ones I love."
Neville snarled, and tightened his grip on Harry's shoulders. "Damnit, Harry, that's not enough!"
"Not enough?" Harry glared at Neville. "It's not enough? I'm going to kill Voldemort, and that's not fucking enough?"
"No, it's not." Neville snapped. "Not if you don't have a real reason to fight him."
"I have a real reason!"
"Then tell me!" Neville stared into Harry's eyes fiercely. "Tell me why you think that you're the one who has to kill him!"
Harry frowned. "Dumbledore said -"
Neville covered Harry's mouth with his hand to keep him from talking. "So you're fighting him because Dumbledore told you to." His gaze softened. "Harry, can you hear yourself?"
Harry removed Neville's hand slowly and placed it on Neville's lap. Neville didn't say anything when Harry didn't take his own away. "No one else will do it. And it's not just what Dumbledore wants."
He paused. Neville stayed quiet to allow Harry to pick up the sentence.
"He killed my parents. He's the main reason Slytherins are hated so much. He's the reason I can't live with my Godfather." Harry's hand tightened on Neville's, his knuckles turning white. "I don't have to kill him. I want to kill him."
Neville studied Harry. He had never really looked at him before, but now he had the chance. In front of him sat someone so much like himself. Both of them had their lives ruined by Voldemort, and by his supporters. But Harry, unlike Neville, wasn't going to sit back and take it. He was going to fight it, and he was going to fight until he either righted the wrong or died trying.
Neville envied him. Harry had the strength and the courage to fight an entire world by himself.
"So I'm going to fight him." Harry finished, after the awkward pause in which he hadn't missed Neville's study.
"You will, won't you?" Neville sighed, defeated. "Nothing anyone says or does is going to change your mind, will it?"
Harry shook his head, a small smile tugging at his lips. "Nope." he whispered.
Neville looked down at his hand, which was still encased in Harry's. "Well," he said, equally quiet. "Then I guess I'm going to have to give you something to fight for."
Harry frowned, but it was soon covered by Neville's lips. It was short and sweet, nothing more than a brushing of their lips. When Neville pulled back, he was met by a pair of wide, startled emerald eyes.
"Hopefully," Neville stood, releasing Harry's hand. "I'm something worth fighting for."
As Neville walked out of the dormitories to go and tell Ron that Harry had calmed down, he could have sworn he saw a smile forming on Harry's lips, as well as a pale, tell-tale blush that told Neville that Harry now had something else to fight for.