A notice had been posted on all the common room boards one evening. It said:
There will be a Christmas Dance this year, December 24th at 8, for all students above third year.
Anyone under third year may attend if, and only if; their date is above the third year.
If you would like to stay for Christmas, please sign up with Professor McGonagall as soon as possible.
Please be aware that no students will be allowed without proper dress robes.
Harry had been reading the notice over someone's shoulder. Suddenly he thought he was going to be sick.
"Harry? Are you alright?" Hermione asked. "Harry? Ron help me, I think he's going to pass out."
Ron rushed up and they each put an arm around Harry leading him to his favorite comfy armchair.
"Harry?" Ron asked repeating Hermione.
Harry looked up. "I'm ok. That's so not good."
They looked scared. Harry stood up slowly. "I'm going to bed."
Ron and Hermione watched him go utterly bewildered. What was wrong with a dance? Harry had gone to the Yule Ball a few years ago. It had been ok. What was so bad about this particular dance?
Harry pretended to be asleep later when he heard Ron coming up. Harry didn't want to talk about it. He was afraid of this dance because there was someone he wanted to ask and neither Ron nor Hermione would probably approve. No, they would try to talk him out of it. Harry was excited, but so scared.
Three days after the notice had gone up everyone was talking about only the Christmas Dance. Harry couldn't escape it. He had to ask even if he got rejected. Harry's fear increased. He needed someone to talk to. Ron would laugh, so that left Hermione. Harry waited until later that night.
"Alright!" Ron said after winning a fifth game of wizard's chess. Hermione made to stand up but Harry caught her eye and shook his head slightly. She sat back down.
"I'm going up, you coming Harry?" Ron asked cleaning up his chessboard.
Harry shook his head again. "No, I'm going to stay for a few."
Hermione stood up and pretended she was going to bed. Kissing Ron's cheek as he went by. "Night." She said.
They waited until they heard the dorm door close. "What is it, Harry?" Hermione asked sitting again.
"I need help, I want to ask someone to the dance." Harry said looking at her.
"Ok, well what's the problem?" Hermione stayed calm.
Harry laughed. "I don't want everyone watching me ask."
"Oh, well do you know who your going to ask?" Hermione asked
"Yeah, but I'm not telling, sorry!" Harry said turning red.
"Fine, but if I knew who it was this would be easier. Why don't you just ask to talk to them alone?" Hermione asked.
Harry laughed. She looked confused. She didn't know how that would look. They had hated each other for so long. Harry Potter asking Draco Malfoy for a word was like saying house elves would soon be free. Highly unlikely.
"Well, I don't know any other way, the great hall is out, too many people… class would be worse with everyone staring…. What about here, in the common room?" She asked rambling.
"Can't! They aren't Gryffindor." Harry said rolling his eyes. "That's all the info you get too."
Hermione laughed. "Sorry, I can't help you more."
"It's ok, did Ron ask you yet?" Harry asked.
"Right after the notice went up. I'm going to bed now. Good Luck!" Hermione said standing again.
The sun was shining brightly through the window in the dorm when Harry awoke the next morning. He had butterflies in his stomach. Harry was going to ask Draco to the dance. He was so nervous. Harry dressed quickly and got ready for his lessons. His plan was a simple one. He was hoping to catch Draco alone in one of corridors. Then he was going to ask.
Harry was constantly on the lookout for Draco, but the two times he had seen him, Ron and Hermione had been hovering. Just before lunch Harry saw his target entering a classroom; probably empty since everyone was heading to lunch.
"Ron, can you take this to the hall? I have something I need to do." Harry asked handing Ron his bag.
"Sure, mate, but hurry or you won't have time to eat." Ron said. Ron took the bag and turned to Hermione. Just before Harry lost sight of them he saw Hermione wink.
Stopping before the door, Harry took a deep breath. He opened the door and walked in, closing it behind him. Draco was sitting in a window staring at the grounds below.
"What do you want, Potter?" he asked in a snide voice.
"Can I talk to you?" Harry asked back.
Draco didn't budge. "What for?"
"Well, I wanted to ask you something, but I can just go if you don't want me here." Harry said turning. Damn it.
"No, what's your question?" Draco spoke softer.
"Two actually, why'd you come back to Hogwarts?" Harry started.
"Funny, Potter, I have to do something with the mess of I life I've got. Finishing school will make getting a job easier although since I'm registered with the Ministry as an ex- Death Eater, it won't help much." Draco spoke quickly like he was trying to forget.
Harry just smiled. "Oh, well… I guess I'll go now." Harry tried to back away; he couldn't ask after that, but Draco knew something was up.
"Harry, you said you had two questions…" Draco said.
"Right, well… I mean… I did, but I can't ask the other… I wasn't…." Harry stammered turning really red.
"Just ask, you can't get much more embarrassed and if you don't ask now when?" Draco interrupted.
"Fine, will you go to the Christmas Dance with me?" Harry asked turning surprisingly more red and hiding his face in his arms.
"What?" Draco was staring at Harry.
Harry lifted his head. "I said…"
"I heard you… I just don't believe it… What about Weasley?" Draco asked smirking.
"We broke up, she's with someone else." Harry was losing his blush the more they talked.
Draco nodded. "Yeah, but she's a girl… I'm definitely not a girl."
"I know." Harry said.
"You're gay, huh?" Draco asked smirking even bigger.
Harry laughed. "No, I'll go either way."
"Oh… yes, I'll go with you, but you don't tell anyone before hand. Meet me at 8 in front of the Hall." Draco said.
"Really?" Harry was smiling.
"Yes, now leave me alone, Potter!" Draco was staring out the window again.
"Ok." Harry said turning to go. He turned back and saw Draco smile, a real smile; not his signature smirk.
Draco was so amazed. Harry swung both ways. Draco had always wondered what it would be like if he and Harry were together instead of enemies. Now that the war was over and Voldemort was gone, Harry was taking a chance. Draco liked that and Harry wasn't a bad looking guy. Draco had agreed to the dance simply to see everyone's reactions, but being able to get closer to Harry was an added bonus. Draco smiled. Funny how these things happened.
Harry made it to the Great Hall in just enough time to eat.
"Where did you go?" Ron asked when Harry slid in the spot across from his friends.
"To get a date." Harry said grinning from ear to ear.
Hermione laughed. "You asked, well?"
"Yes, I have a date." Harry was still smiling.
"Who is it, mate?" Ron asked.
Harry shook his head and swallowed the bite he had just taken. "Can't tell you, sorry. I was sworn to secrecy until the actual dance."
Word spread that Harry had an anonymous date and the entire week leading up to the Saturday of the dance, Harry was bugged constantly.
The Wednesday before, they were all in potions class and a Slytherin girl Harry didn't know spoke up.
"Malfoy, who do you think it is?" she asked Draco really loud.
Draco turned to her. "Who do I think what is?"
The girl sighed. "Who do you think Harry asked to the dance?"
Harry turned red. "I'm right here."
"Yeah, he's here, ask him." Draco sneered.
"Well?" The girl prompted turning to Harry.
"I'm not telling, I was sworn to secrecy." Harry spoke loudly enough for everyone to hear, although the whole room was watching.
Draco spoke up again. "Whoever they are, they got lucky."
"What?" the Slytherin girl screeched. "You can't mean that."
"Yeah, I do, who wouldn't want a night with the Wonder Boy." Draco said smirking again.
Harry almost told everyone right then and there, but he couldn't bring himself to actually do it.
Saturday came quickly and by seven forty five, Harry was shaking. He couldn't possibly be more nervous. He told Ron and Hermione he would see them there, and he went down before them.
The doors to the Great Hall were closed and everyone who was meeting someone from another house was in the hallway right outside. Harry searched for Draco's blond hair since it was the easiest thing about him to spot. Draco was nowhere to be found. Getting restless, Harry sat down on the steps near the bottom.
"Looking for me?" Draco whispered in Harry's right ear.
Harry turned smiling. "Yeah, where'd you come from?"
Draco sat down next to him. "I was behind you, watching you scope the room."
"Oh." Harry said. People were starting to stare at them. He could hear the massive whispers.
Draco leaned in close his hand on Harry's thigh. "You sure you want to do this?" He whispered.
Harry looked from the hand on his leg to the face near his own and smiled. "Definitely!" He whispered back.
"Oh thank god, I thought you were going to bail. I was hoping you would say yes." Draco said softly.
Harry just nodded. Draco went to back up and his hand started to slide away. Harry placed his own hand on top, keeping Draco's secure. Harry smiled.
Someone screamed. "Hermione. Be quiet." Ron said not noticing what Hermione had. They came farther down the stairs and Ron finally saw it.
"WHAT THE HELL?" Ron screamed from behind Harry and Draco.
"Ron, calm down." Hermione said from his elbow.
"Hi!" Harry said. "What time is it?"
Draco looked down. "A few minutes 'till eight."
"Ok, we should…" Harry began.
"Attention, students." Professor McGonagall spoke loud and clear. "We will be opening the doors in a few minutes. But I don't want the Hall rushed, so everyone needs to line up on the left side of the doors please."
As everyone began shuffling about, Harry felt his arm being pulled. He looked up to Draco who was tugging on him. Harry allowed himself to be pulled. The sensation of Draco's hand on his own was sending shock waves through his arm and Harry didn't want it to end.
When the line moved, Harry clasped hands with Draco, smiling. The Great Hall looked beautiful for a Christmas Eve, house tables were gone and in their place were many gold square tables. Each table had a red or green Christmas decoration. Twinkling lights were strung everywhere and there were so many Christmas trees, Harry lost count. Dean Thomas was up on a gold platform playing DJ. Harry loved it.
"Wow!" Ron said from behind them.
"I know; it's perfect." Hermione responded.
"Harry? Can I talk to you please? Before things get going." Ron asked.
Harry looked over and Draco nodded. "Let's find a table first. Hermione and I can talk there while you talk to Ron." Draco said more to Harry than anyone else.
Everyone froze. "Ok." Hermione said getting over the shock over Draco using her first name.
Draco detached from Harry and took Hermione's arm. Ron pulled Harry away and they stopped a few feet from the corner table Draco chose.
"I thought you had a date. What the hell is Malfoy doing?" Ron asked in concern struggling to keep calm.
"He is my date, and if you don't like that, I'm sorry." Harry said staring into his friends face.
Ron's jaw dropped. "You mean, you're…"
"No, I like both, I wouldn't have gone with Ginny." Harry spoke softly
"Oh, well… I guess he's changed, huh?" Ron said looking over to Draco and Hermione laughing at the table.
"I'm not saying I like this, but let's go!" Ron said pulling him back.
"Everything ok?" Draco asked when they sat down.
Harry nodded. "Fine."
Halfway through the dance, everyone was either on the dance floor, eating, or talking. Things were going good. Harry and Draco hadn't danced. They had been at the same table talking about everything they could and snacking quite a bit.
"Ok! This next song is dedicated to a good friend of mine, maybe he'll get out of his seat." Dean said into the microphone from his platform.
Harry looked up and saw Hermione coming down the steps at the side of the platform. She waved and grabbed Ron. It was a slower song. Harry gulped. Uh Oh! This was not going to go over well.
"Will you dance with me?" A silky voice whispered in his ear.
Harry looked to Draco and nodded. Draco took his hand and led them to the middle of the dance floor.
He could feel the eyes following them. Draco pulled Harry in closer and placed his hands on Harry's back. Harry's arms went around Draco too. They began to move in slow circles staying in almost the same spot.
"Are they still staring?" Harry whispered.
Draco looked around. "Yep."
Harry blushed. "Damn it!" He continued whispering.
Draco smiled. "Why's that such a bad thing?"
"Because I can't get what I really want with everyone watching my every move." Harry spoke so soft Draco almost didn't hear him.
Harry's head was on Draco's chest and he could feel it skip a beat. "What do you really want?" Draco asked.
Harry smiled. "No, not here."
Draco pulled away and Harry thought he had ruined his chance. Draco looked into the green eyes before him and knew he was lost. Dipping his head slightly, Draco's lips met Harry's in a surge of heat. Draco licked slowly and Harry sighed opening his mouth unintentionally. The music had stopped, but neither was paying attention. Draco's tongue was true magic. He swirled it in such a way that Harry was so hard he felt himself about to explode. Slowly the kiss came to an end and they broke apart.
Harry leaned back into Draco's chest and Draco saw what was really wrong. The music wasn't on. Everyone including Dean Thomas had stopped to watch them.
"Uh, Harry, we have a rather large audience." Draco said pulling back slightly.
Harry looked up and saw the whole school staring at them. "Fuck! Can't you people mind your own business for once." Harry said loudly. He was mad.
"Potter, language!" McGonagall yelled out.
"Sorry Professor." Harry apologized.
Ron stepped forward, Hermione in tow. "Harry's right, why is everyone staring? Go back to your dance."
Someone, a girl by the sound of the voice, spoke up. "That's insane, He used to be a Death Eater!"
"Yeah, Draco used to be a Death Eater, you do know why right?" Harry asked the room loudly.
No one spoke up and Draco tugged his arm. "No." Harry said lowering his voice. "They need to know." Draco stopped tugging. He sighed and nodded "Ok." Draco said softly.
"Draco was forced to be a Death Eater. Voldemort threatened his family, his parents. Do you think if it was you, you would let Voldemort just take your parents, your siblings? No, most if not all of us would fight for our families. And what's worse, Draco wasn't just forced to be a Death Eater; he was forced to torture other people. He was trying to save not only himself, but also his family from Voldemort. Now granted, he hasn't made the best choices, but I hold no grudge and neither should anyone else." Harry spoke furiously addressing things others are terrified of.
Harry pulled away from Draco and everyone else and walked out of the Great Hall.
He heard behind him Draco's voice. "Nice going; you people make me sick." And then running footsteps.
"Thank You!" Draco said catching up.
Harry turned. "Next time, you should defend yourself."
"Why? It's so much hotter to watch you do it for me." Draco said laughing. "You look good when you're angry."
"Oh." Harry said smiling back. "So I don't look good if I'm not mad?"
"No, you always look good." Draco paused. Harry looked into his eyes.
"Will you be with me?" He asked.
"Everyday!" Harry answered just as their lips met once again.