Title: The Dance of Its Crafting
Disclaimer: J. K. Rowling and associates own these characters. I am writing this for fun and not profit.
Pairing: Harry/Draco preslash
Warnings: Fluff, mentions of past angst
Summary: Harry starts working to make the mirror that Draco wants
Author's Notes: Eighth in the Made by Hands series, and building very closely off the seventh story.
The Dance of Its Crafting
Harry laid down the piece of cherry wood in front of him and stared at it. He reckoned it was a little shiny already, but not much. Not as much as it would need to be when it was a mirror. He waved a hand above it, and saw the dim reflection of his palm and fingers move there.
I might have been a little overambitious.
Draco had chosen a piece of silver to Transfigure into a mirror for Harry. It wasn't glass, the way the final mirror would need to be, but it was more reflective, and closer to the purpose Harry wanted the mirror for—reflection of curses. Transfiguring a piece of wood into a mirror that would allow Draco to see where Harry was at all times was more difficult.
But Draco said I liked challenges.
Harry smiled. Remembering what Draco had said made that happen to him almost without his will. Draco was alive here at Hogwarts, as he hadn't been when Harry first delivered the message to him from McGonagall welcoming him back to Hogwarts.
Harry hadn't been enthusiastic about the idea at first. He knew that some of the Slytherins had been acquitted and so McGonagall had decided to accept them back as students because they still might not have normal lives otherwise. But Harry thought having them at a good distance from victims of the war was the smarter idea.
When he had delivered the letter from McGonagall to Draco, though, he saw what she meant. Draco was in the middle of a spiral of grief and destructiveness. He might turn into a new kind of Death Eater if left to himself, or at least waste his life and teach his children to hate the people who had put them into that position. Condemn people that the Ministry had already declared not guilty, and the whole war could repeat in a generation or so.
So Harry had handed over the letter, and made himself responsible for enforcing the message that McGonagall wanted enforced. That meant making sure that a Slytherin torturing someone, Pansy Parkinson, was arrested, because that was a new crime since the war and one she had to be tried for, but also making sure that people couldn't curse random Slytherins just because they wanted to. That was another sure route back to war, with vengeance replacing justice.
More than anything, Harry thought, walking around the low table in the Room of Requirement that he'd laid the cherry wood on, he didn't want to fight another war. That was worth doing anything he had to, including labor now.
That labor might be as hard as Transfiguring this piece of cherry wood, but Harry would still do it.
The doorknob turned. Harry turned around and smiled. He had sent an owl with the invitation earlier, but he hadn't been sure it would be accepted.
Draco stepped into the room and shut the door behind him. His smile was thin and strained. Harry nodded encouragingly at him and faced the table again. "Did you bring your silver?" he asked. "I thought we could work on this together."
Draco walked slowly towards him and laid the oval of silver on the table beside the cherry wood. His head was bowed. "Who else is coming?" he asked.
Harry blinked, then shook his head. "No one else. Just us."
Draco flicked a little bob of his head towards him. "I thought—this was a general Transfiguration study group."
"No," Harry said. "Since we're the two making mirrors for each other, I thought we could get ideas about it." He laid his hand on Draco's arm, feeling the muscles jump warm and living in his grasp. "If you want to. You can go if you're not comfortable here."
Draco muttered something Harry couldn't make out, and then nodded to the cherry wood. "We should start with yours, since it's harder."
That wasn't quite the way Harry had envisioned this going, but he was agreeable. He picked up the wood and turned it over. "All right. Although I think only the material is harder. What you asked me for is pretty straightforward."
"I thought of something else I want from it."
Harry moved his gaze to Draco at once. "What's that?" He was surprised to hear his voice sound so husky. He hadn't known until Draco said it how much he wanted to make something for Draco. It was as though several thousand nerves in his body had all stood up and said Yes, please.
Draco swallowed. "Maybe I asked for it before," he said. "I can't remember. But I want it to be so that only I can use the mirror. No one else."
Harry nodded, smiling when Draco glanced at him again. "That's fine. Even if someone else wanted to use it to find out where I was, they could ask you. I would rather they do that instead of use the mirror themselves."
Draco frowned. "Really? Why?"
"Because I trust you with my privacy," Harry said. "Not everyone else."
This was becoming heavier than Draco had thought it would, the atmosphere in the room charging with what felt like silent electricity. Silent and invisible, Draco thought, shuddering a little, as the hairs on his arms stood up and other parts of his body stirred as though they too wanted to reach towards Harry.
And wouldn't that be a mistake?
Draco turned hastily back to his piece of silver. "All right," he whispered. "Can you—can you do that? Make a mirror that shows you, no matter where you are, and what you're doing at the time, and that only I can use?"
Harry turned and looked at his piece of cherry wood, stretching out his hand to caress it. Draco studied it closely for the first time. It was nearly the size and shape of his silver oval, but a little more ragged around the edges, and a little bigger. And of course it wasn't nearly as shiny and polished as the silver was.
"I think so," Harry said. "I think it'll take several rounds of spellcasting. I practiced with that a little during the summer, you know. Casting magic for a long time, and concentrating on it for a long time. I did some rituals. Hermione said that I had to see the strong and peaceful side of magic, too, not just the battle side."
"It was the peaceful side that made the torque you have," Draco murmured, not sure why he said it.
Harry's hand moved up to the gleam of silver at his throat, and he smiled over at Draco.
"I know that. Let's see what I've learned so far."
He closed his eyes, and laid his wand against the cherry wood. He began to whisper the spell McGonagall had taught them in class that day, the chant that would turn an object into a mirror. That was a long way from the final enchanted object they would have to create, she had said, but it meant that they would at least have the physical side done, once they mastered it.
"Speculum creo, speculum creo, speculum creo…"
Draco felt it rising and welling up all around them, the strong, silent, deep magic, the kind that he had only felt before this when the Death Eaters conducted a ritual in his home. This was different from their magic in everything except the strength and the quietness, though. This throbbed where theirs had hummed, sang with life where theirs had had the silent stickiness of bloody death. Draco had always longed to escape their rituals. He thought he could grow addicted to this magic.
The magic rose, mounded around Harry like a small hill, and then flowed over his shoulders and down onto the surface of the cherry wood. Draco took an anxious step forwards, wondering if he should be worrying about the magic overcoming Harry. And then who would speak up for him, create his mirror, defend him?
Draco swallowed and stepped back when he noticed that Harry's chest was still moving perfectly regularly, and that the magic was slopping and flowing onto the table. Interfering when someone was in the middle of a ritual like this could be like being Splinched.
Harry's eyes opened. For a moment, they glowed a darker green than Draco had ever noticed them being. Then the magic left them, and Harry sagged.
A chair appeared beneath him before Draco could rush to catch him, the way he almost had. Draco shook his head and reminded himself that this was the Room of Requirement. Of course it would give Harry a chair, if that was what he required. Up to this point, the only thing that had been in the bare, windowless stone room was the table with their ovals on it.
Harry leaned his head back and closed his eyes for a second.
Draco finally turned and looked at the piece of cherry wood. He'd been so concerned with Harry that he hadn't seen whether Harry's magic had achieved the desired result.
There was a perfect mirror with a wooden back lying there. Draco's hands trembled as he picked it up.
Up close, the glass was less perfect; it was wavering and rippled, and Draco could only see a misty reflection of his face. But he tilted it towards Harry, and it leaped with a flash of green. Draco almost dropped it.
"I'll thank you not to break it when I worked so hard on it," Harry muttered, without opening his eyes.
"I think it's tuned to you," Draco breathed. "Maybe it'll be easier for you to put something of yourself into it, make it so that it only shows you."
"That was rather the point of using a spell to make it into a mirror, rather than just Transfiguring it outright." Harry sat up and opened his eyes. He didn't reach for the mirror, just looked at Draco with a soft smile on his lips. "It's going to be tuned to me, but ultimately not mine, and McGonagall said once that every Transfiguration we do is linked to the original caster, just a little bit. I want to make the link the one that shows me, not one that would make the mirror belong to me."
Draco cocked his head. He was glad that Harry was well enough to sit up and open his eyes so soon after using so much magic, but he did wonder about the way he was looking at him. "What are you thinking?"
"That I really like the way you look, holding something I made."
Draco blinked and half-lifted a hand, then let it fall. He didn't know what he would have shielded, anyway.
"I didn't make the letter that invited you back to Hogwarts," Harry whispered, "or that gold cauldron I got you. But I'm going to make this mirror for you, and it's going to be beautiful."
He reached out and took the mirror gently from Draco's limp and trembling hand. Then he put it down on the table and turned to Draco with a smile that was full of sweetness. "Shall we start on yours next?"
Draco gulped air, and said, "It would be my pleasure."
And for the first time in a long time, that was what had filled him. Pleasure, sweet and unalloyed, like the kind he had felt when he was a child, watching his parents dance, learning how to dance himself, learning to name music.