Harry left the café and walked down the steps into the lower levels of the market. None of the shops were open and the place was largely deserted. Harry took a dark hallway, listened for any approaching footsteps, and then Disapparated.
He reappeared on Bainbridge Island in a secluded bit of forest he had mapped out during a walk. It was a short hike to the bed-and-breakfast and he used the time to mull over Malfoy's words.
Mundungus Fletcher. Harry had not seen the man since the war. He remembered trying to pry the whereabouts of the Slytherin locket from him. Harry's nose wrinkled with distaste. If Mundungus was involved… well, it would explain many things, but it also seemed a bit too coincidental that Malfoy remembered seeing Mundungus just when Harry was looking for a suspect.
Harry's feet crunched on the ice-covered ground and he pulled his jacket tighter around his shoulders. He brushed past a bush and snow deposited on his shin, marring Malfoy's fine trousers. Harry sighed, wishing it wasn't so easy to believe the worst of Malfoy. Harry knew if it were anyone else, he would be giving them the benefit of the doubt. Of course, he most likely wouldn't have shagged them, either.
That had been a mistake, possibly a costly one, but Harry couldn't bring himself to regret it. If Malfoy was involved with the smuggling ring, then Harry would do his best to keep the idiot out of Azkaban, and not just because he had been amazing in bed.
The bed-and-breakfast came into sight and Harry quickly pulled his invisibility cloak from his satchel and slung it on. He did not want to run into Carl or any of the other guests; he intended to send a message and then get back to Draco.
He Apparated to the balcony and used a quick Alohomora to unlock the glass door. He was relieved to find everything apparently untouched. After the attack on Malfoy, he had half-expected his room to be ransacked, but apparently they really did not know where Harry was staying.
Harry scrawled a quick note regarding Mundungus. A tapping on the glass caught his attention and he spotted a crow watching him. He frowned. The birds gave him the shivers, frankly, and seemed far more ominous than friendly. He missed the owls of England. Finishing the message, he let it dry and walked to the door to let in the bird.
It flapped inside and landed on the bed with a flutter of black wings. Harry wrinkled his nose, realizing he would have to give it something to eat. With a start, he remembered the cookies and fished out the box. The smell was delightful and he broke one in half before tossing a morsel to the crow. The rest he ate, rationalising that he wasn't actually eating it for breakfast.
Still munching, he detached the message from the crow's leg and unfurled it.
DM is employed by Eugenia Scamander and has been for the past eight years. He is a certified Herbologist and holds a Class Four Substance license. His business at his current location is unknown. He is still on the Ministry Watch List, however. Treat with caution.
Harry frowned. Eugenia Scamander. Why did that name sound familiar? He shook his head and crumpled the note. At least Malfoy hadn't lied about being a Herbologist, or an Herbalist, or whatever his business card said these days, even though his ultimate reason for being in Seattle was unconfirmed.
Harry grabbed his own message, rolled it up, and slipped it into the holder on the crow's leg. The bird glared at him balefully and pecked at his arm.
"Stop that. I already gave you a treat, greedy bird. Take that to the British Wizarding Embassy." He walked to the door and gestured outside. The bird reluctantly took wing and soared through the portal into the cold air. It let out a rasping cry, circled once, and then took off towards the city across the water.
Harry took out his wand, Vanished the note regarding Malfoy's employment, and Apparated back to Pike's Market. He hoped the corridor was still deserted, otherwise he would have to remember how to Obliviate someone. Luckily, that skill wasn't put to the test; the place was still empty.
Harry pocketed his wand and made his way back upstairs to the café. His stomach growled in earnest, not appeased by the partial chocolate chip cookie he had eaten. When he entered the café, Malfoy's cup was on the table, but Malfoy was gone.
Harry fought down a jolt of panic and caught the attention of the woman that had called to Malfoy when they had entered. "Excuse me, miss. Do you know where Mal—Dra—Mr Black went?"
"He left with his two friends just as soon as they arrived. They did not even stay for coffee. Do you still want your tea?" Her expression was clearly disapproving.
"His… friends? Did he eat breakfast?"
She shook her head. "Paid for it, but left before it was on the table. Said he was in a hurry and couldn't stay."
"What did his friends look like? Was he behaving strangely?"
Her face closed up and Harry knew he had lost all chance of extracting additional information. "Would you like that tea now, sir?" she asked politely.
Harry shook his head and walked out of the café, biting his lip. Had Malfoy been toying with him all along?
He took the sloping ramp that led to the main market. Vendors were already setting up their wares, placing jewellery, honey, handcrafted items, and t-shirts on tables and display racks. Their breath fogged the air and they smiled and lifted a gloved hand towards Harry as he passed, or ignored him completely as they worked. Harry scanned the place and then walked out onto the street. It was paved in bricks, a throwback from days gone by, and contained more pedestrians than vehicles, and not many of those on this cold morning.
A couple with two small children hurried towards the Market entrance. Two men in business attire walked briskly near the Muggle banking machine, and three men wearing orange vests and white helmets held white coffee cups and lounged near a fenced-off section that had been partially demolished.
Harry stood where he was, indecisive, and looked the other direction. A homeless man bundled in a grey blanket huddled on one corner and—Harry drew in a breath. Three men crossed the street some distance away. Two of them were unrecognizable, but the pale blond hair of the third was unmistakable. Harry turned and ran, taking care not to slip on the icy bricks. They disappeared from sight and Harry debated Apparating, Muggles be damned.
Instead he put on a burst of speed, racing up the hill and rounding the corner. A delivery man carrying a tray of wrapped bread shouted and jumped aside. Harry dove past him, eyes scanning the street. The man's cry had caught the attention of one of the men with Malfoy—they had reached the next corner. The man gaped at Harry and then pulled out a wand.
Harry drew his own wand and cut across the empty street. The two men and Malfoy hurried around the next corner. They were on First Avenue, which was busy with traffic. Harry thought they wouldn't dare Disapparate.
He also did not think they would try to hex him, but in that he was wrong. The moment he reached the corner, a chunk of the wall just above his head exploded, showering stone bits and dust over his hair. Harry cursed and crouched. The American authorities would have his head, followed by Kingsley if he let this get out of hand. He glanced around and sent a Stunner after the man.
The men were running; one of them hauled Malfoy along by a grip on his arm. Malfoy did not seem particularly interested in escape. He pulled back and his voice reached Harry's ears. "Watch the coat! This was hand-crafted!"
"Apparate!" the first man yelled.
Harry cast just as they all disappeared. He straightened, hoping to hell the spell had reached Malfoy. He glanced around. Amazingly, there were no Muggles standing around staring at him. A couple of cars had passed, but they hadn't stopped. He shook his head. Americans were an odd lot. They had probably assumed Harry and the others to be part of a film crew. The American Aurors at the Embassy had laughed about that when explaining rules and regulations to him on his arrival.
Giving up worrying about Muggle observers, Harry cast another spell. Relief flooded him when he felt a tug on his solar plexus, as if an invisible force tried to pull at him. Tracking Charm.
Harry hated to Apparate blind. It was extraordinarily dangerous, but his instincts were screaming at him, and they had been well-honed over the past decade. Taking a deep breath, he focussed on the tug of the Tracking Charm and Disapparated.
He materialized in a thankfully large space, directly in front of Malfoy, who swore and staggered back a couple of steps. "Bloody hell, Potter!"
Someone shouted nearby.
Harry hastily erected a Shield Charm just in time; a bolt bounced off immediately. He kept his eyes on Malfoy, who stood placidly once the shock of Harry's appearance diminished. Malfoy wasn't even holding a wand, but his motives were unknown, so Harry did not dare turn his back on him.
Harry risked a quick glance around, however, to see the two men from before aiming their wands. Someone Harry couldn't see was yelling, "Stun him! Obliviate him!"
Harry's shield held as two more spells bounced away. Malfoy frowned, looking far too placid for the situation.
"I am waiting here," Malfoy explained inanely.
Equal parts relief and alarm flooded Harry. "Finite Incantatum," he said, touching Malfoy lightly with his wand tip. The grey eyes cleared immediately just as a hex shattered Harry's shield.
"Potter! What the fuck?"
Harry smiled. That was more like it. Malfoy was likely to be incensed at having been Imperiused, but Harry did not have time to witness it. He spun around and sprayed the area with multiple hexes. A sizzling bolt narrowly missed his head, but both of Harry's targets shouted and dove for cover. They occupied a warehouse, Harry noted, surrounded by wooden crates and empty pallets.
Malfoy's wand appeared over Harry's shoulder and a spell shot upwards, striking a man who stood atop a set of metal stairs—Mundungus Fletcher. Harry threw a Tracking Charm at Mundungus just in case he Disapparated, but the man simply staggered against the railing, obviously suffering from whatever Malfoy had thrown at him.
"Saving me again, Potter?" Malfoy asked in a teasing tone.
"Always," Harry replied with a grin.
A head appeared from behind a wooden box and Harry's Stunner hit the man on the forehead. A sharp cry caused Harry to spin around, wand ready, but Malfoy had got there first. The final man sprawled on the floor, hopefully unconscious.
Harry grinned at Malfoy. "You would have made a pretty good Auror."
To his surprise, Malfoy's expression turned cold. He said nothing, however, and Harry pushed down a sense of misgiving. He did not have time to pry into Malfoy's psyche. Instead, he gestured. "Bind that man and I'll see to Mundungus."
"Yes, Auror Potter, sir," Malfoy said harshly.
Harry's lips thinned. Damn it, he didn't even know what he'd done! "Sorry," he said anyway. "Force of habit."
Malfoy shrugged. "Never mind. You're just doing your job."
Harry blanched, remembering the last time Malfoy had said those words. He nodded, torn between performing his duty and trying to delve beneath Malfoy's prickly, perplexing personality.
Without another word, Malfoy walked to the Stunned man and bound him with an Incarcerous.
Harry hurried to the steps where Mundungus was lounging and singing a song, sounding almost drunk. The singsong words halted when he spotted Harry. "Well, if it ain't the Minister for Magic! Hullo, Minister!"
Harry could not quite suppress a smile. Malfoy's Confundus was impressive. "Hello, Mundungus. Time to go and visit the authorities."
"Authorities shemorities plethoraties sonoraties," Mundungus said nonsensically. Harry tied him with magical ropes just in case his wits returned. He added an Anti-Disapparation Charm.
"Wait here a moment," Harry said as if Mundungus had any choice in the matter.
"Here like beer!" Mundungus replied.
"Exactly," Harry said. Malfoy had Levitated the first man over to lie near the second. Both were bound in magical ropes, so Harry assumed they were still living.
"I am going to be late for my appointment," Malfoy said, still acting like an icy stranger. "So, if you don't mind, I will take my leave. You know where to find me." His grey eyes narrowed. "How did you find me?"
Harry flushed, knowing Malfoy wouldn't like it, particularly in the mood he was in at the moment. "Tracking Charm," he admitted.
Malfoy went so still Harry feared when he did finally move it would be to hex him seven ways from Sunday. Harry stepped towards him and raised a hand, hoping to placate him, wishing for a way to bring back the softer, pleasanter version from last night. Malfoy took a step back and raised his wand.
"Well, then, you definitely know where to find me. Later, Potter." With one last glare, Malfoy Disapparated, leaving Harry to stare forlornly at the spot he'd disappeared from. He swore softly to himself and set about contacting the local authorities to come and pick up Mundungus and his cronies.
Draco Apparated straight to his hotel room, and winced at the sting of Potter's wards. He would have to remember to have the prat dismantle them before he left, which he could hopefully do without Draco ever setting eyes on him again.
He walked to the kitchenette and picked up the box of Sylvia's cookies. As he lifted it, he remembered Potter's ecstatic expression when he'd first bitten into one. That image morphed into Potter's face above him, taut with passion, eyes burning into Draco's and lips wet from his kisses.
Draco shook off the memory. It had been a one-off, for fuck's sake. It meant nothing. Potter would leave now, would go back to England and his perfect life and perfect job and forget Draco ever existed.
If only that knowledge didn't hurt so bloody much.
Draco shook his head and forced Potter out of his mind. He had business to conduct. With a final check of his appearance in the mirror, he Disapparated, magical disruption of electronics be damned.
Draco returned four hours later, exhausted but triumphant. He walked straight to the bar and carefully placed the terrarium on the counter. He sighed with relief when the plant therein did not even quiver at the movement, although Draco would have been surprised if it had—his Stasis Charm was perfected by now.
A rustle of movement startled him and his hand moved towards his wand, but Potter's voice halted the motion.
"What is it?" Potter asked, coming closer until he stood next to Draco.
" Cephalanthera austiniae," Draco replied. "A Phantom Orchid. It's incredibly rare."
"It's beautiful," Potter said, eyes on the delicate frond and small petal of the pure white flower. Even the leaves were white.
"Beautiful and potentially useful," Draco said. "Eugenia believes it might be beneficial as a potion ingredient for treatment of certain psychic maladies. Sylvia is the first person to have successfully grown them in captivity, as it were, at least that I've been able to locate."
"Indeed. It has taken months of work to get her to part with one. If she were a witch, she most likely would have Sorted Slytherin at Hogwarts." Draco reached out and touched the glass that encased the orchid. He whispered a spell that darkened the glass. The Phantom preferred the shade.
"You really like this," Potter said, sounding surprised.
"I am good at what I do. I understand the needs and the stakes, I get to travel and spend Eugenia's money, and I enjoy parting people from their knowledge and possessions. And it was something to do when the Auror Department rejected my application."
Potter drew in a breath. "They did what?"
Draco's eyes narrowed. "You heard me."
Draco did not meet Potter's eyes. By now most of the anger and resentment had faded. It had happened years ago, after all.
"My 'undesirable associations' would have reflected badly on the Auror Department and the Ministry. You know how it was after the war for those of us even remotely attached to the Dark... to Voldemort's name."
"I'm sorry," Potter said quietly. "I didn't know. About the rejection."
Draco believed him, but he doubted Potter would have lifted a finger to help if he had known. They were different people then; it seemed a lifetime ago. "It doesn't matter," Draco said.
"So, this is what you came for?" Potter indicated the orchid.
"Yes. Mission accomplished."
"You're coming home then?" Potter sounded deceptively casual.
"For a short time," Draco replied. "And then I will be off again. Eugenia is already hinting at a rare Amazonian tree bark she wants."
"Can... May I see you while you're in London?"
Draco thought about being deliberately obtuse, but it was clear what Potter asked. "Privately?"
Potter chuckled. "There aren't many private restaurants. I want to take you to dinner, and then maybe to the new cafe in Diagon Alley. They make specialty coffees, which I know you'll like, and a variety of desserts. I'm particularly fond of the treacle tart, but their mango Napoleons are exquisite."
Draco stared at him. "A date? In a public place?"
Potter frowned. "You don't want to be seen with me?"
"Are you mad?"
Potter's face fell. "I see. I thought maybe... I'd hoped..." He took a step back, looking anywhere but at Draco, who suddenly felt like the world's biggest idiot. Potter took another step and lifted his wand, obviously meaning to Disapparate, and then Draco would never see him again, would never—
"Wait!" Draco cried and practically leaped on Potter, gripping the green shirt Draco had given him just that morning.
Potter's eyes widened and locked with Draco's. Rather than try to gather his jumbled thoughts, Draco settled for hauling Potter forward into a kiss.
Potter was stiff with surprise for only a moment, and then he seemed to melt against Draco, enfolding him in a tight embrace and kissing him back with all the fire Draco had half-convinced himself he had dreamed the night before.
Draco pulled away when they were both gasping for breath, although Potter followed him for a moment in order to tug at Draco's lower lip with his teeth. Draco imagined those teeth nipping at his skin in other areas and had to physically push himself away to keep from snogging Potter again.
"I hope that wasn't your way of saying goodbye," Potter said breathlessly. "Because I'm not sure I'm capable of leaving after that."
"That was my way of keeping you from bolting like a jilted lover."
"I thought that's what I was," Potter said cautiously.
"The Saviour of the Wizarding World does not consort with ex-Death Eaters. And most especially male ex-Death Eaters."
Potter chuckled. "As the Saviour in question, I reserve the right to choose whether or not I consort with ex-Death Eaters."
Draco frowned. Potter did not seem to be taking Draco's concern seriously. "They won't like it."
"Who is 'they'?"
"Everyone! There is not a single person in Britain that will think this is a good idea."
Potter opened his mouth to speak, closed it, opened it again, and closed it with a frown. "That doesn't matter."
"It does matter. The Prophet will hound you day and night and every terrible thing I ever did will be dragged out of the dirt and pasted on the headlines.
"I don't care about that. I don't want them to do that to you, but I don't care what they think. The Prophet is full of lies anyway. I can stop them printing anything too dreadful, and I will."
Draco almost smiled. Apparently Potter had not lost all of his naiveté. "How do you plan to do that?"
That did make him smile, the thought of Hermione Granger doing something to benefit Draco. It might be worth going back and dating Potter just to see the reactions from Weasel and Granger. And the idea of Potter fighting for him was a heady one.
"All right. One date. We'll see how it goes from there. The first time one of your annoying fans hexes me on the street, I'm going to Brazil."
"Deal," Potter said and his smile lit up the room.
Harry stepped off the boat, batting at insects and keeping a careful eye out for the caiman he had already seen lurking near the shore of the river. There were deadly creatures in the water, jaguars lurking in the forest, and even poisonous insects. Apart from the friendly people, Brazil had not been particularly welcoming.
A machete-hewn path led from the water's edge through a mangrove swamp that echoed with the loud croaking of frogs. Once out of sight of the boat, Harry pulled out his wand and cast an Insect Repelling Charm. He breathed a sigh of relief and scratched at his neck. He had already been bitten several times.
The path he walked on rose slightly and the vegetation thinned to expose a small clearing that contained three small rough-looking huts. A fire pit in the center of the clearing sent a ribbon of smoke into the sky and an older gentleman wearing a straw hat poked at the embers. He looked up when Harry approached.
"Why, hello there! You must be the boy I've been hearing so much about!" The man got to his feet and Harry smiled. He hadn't been referred to as a "boy" in a very long time.
"Harry Potter, sir," he said and put out his hand to meet a strong grip and a vigorous shake. "I'm afraid to ask what you've been hearing about me."
"Oh, pish, Mr…" The man's words trailed off and his eyes widened. "Oh, I say now, you can't be that Harry Potter! The one who…?" He lifted a hand and pointed at his own forehead with a slashing gesture.
Harry nodded. "Yeah, that Harry Potter." He obediently lifted a hand and pulled back his fringe to expose the scar.
"Well, I never! That is astounding, that is! I am ever so pleased to meet you, Mr Potter!"
"It's just Harry. Nice to meet you, Mr…"
"Scamander! Nathanial Scamander, but please call me Nate."
"Nice to meet you, Nate. Do you know where I can find—?"
"Look at me prattling on. Of course you're looking for Himself. He's just that way. Take care not to stray from the path. And don't forget to look up now and again." Nate gestured towards another rough-looking path between two of the huts.
"Thank you," Harry said and started off, wondering vaguely why he would need to look up now and again.
The forest was thicker beyond the clearing, and Harry had to step over several fallen trees, or walk along their smooth-worn lengths. He glanced up frequently and saw nothing but brightly coloured birds, and once a baleful-looking monkey.
"Look up," he muttered and wondered if Nate was having him on.
After walking for what seemed far too long, Harry chanced a glance up and was glad he hadn't ignored Nate's advice. He stopped short at the sight of the man dangling from a tree branch high above. Magical ropes were connected to a tiny wooden seat and then wrapped around the branch, making a precarious-looking perch.
As if sensing Harry's presence, Malfoy glanced down and their gazes locked. Malfoy shook his head, tapped another piece of bark free of the tree, and tucked it into a pouch attached to the seat. Then he cast a spell and the ropes lengthened, sending him hurtling towards the ground.
Harry nearly cast a Cushioning Charm, but Malfoy slowed just in time and hopped nimbly away from the dangerous-looking contraption. He looked far different than he had in Seattle six months prior. There he had been all high-class and polish. Now he wore casual-looking olive trousers and a pale cotton shirt, open at the neck. Atop his head was a straw hat similar to the one worn by Nate and serviceable boots covered his feet. He looked… well, he looked bloody gorgeous, as always.
"A bit far from home, aren't you, Potter?" Malfoy asked.
"They say home is where the heart is," Harry replied, trying for flippant and probably failing, but it didn't matter because then Malfoy was in his arms and his lips were on Harry's. Their tongues tangled and Harry realized he'd spoken truthfully. He pulled away long enough to catch a breath and say, "Missed you."
Malfoy chuckled. "You're hopeless. I've only been gone two weeks." Despite his words, his hands did not leave off roaming over Harry, sliding down his back and curving over his buttocks before journeying upwards again.
"You haven't missed me at all, then?"
Malfoy hummed. "Now, I certainly didn't say that." With a wicked grin, he leaned forwards and took Harry's lips in another bruising kiss that left Harry feeling slightly dazed by the end. Dazed and exceedingly warm.
"It's really bloody warm here. How can you stand it?"
"Cooling Charms, obviously. Here." Malfoy left off caressing him long enough to murmur a spell. Brilliant, blissful coolness surrounded them and Harry sighed appreciatively. He'd been so focussed on finding Malfoy that he hadn't thought to cast a simple spell. "Come on; let's get you something to drink. Dehydration is a grave danger here."
Malfoy took Harry's hand and pulled him along, letting go only when they reached a fallen log that needed scrambling over.
The encampment seemed far closer than it had when Harry had walked the distance. Nate was still poking at the fire and there was now a pot perched on the edge of the pit, propped up with stones.
"Nate, Harry and I will be… occupied for a bit. I'll appreciate no disturbances. Be sure to keep the jaguars away, yes?"
Nate chuckled and raised a hand. "Aye, Captain."
Malfoy pushed open the door to the middle hut and a welcome blast of cold washed over them. Harry stepped inside.
"You called me Harry," he said as he took in their surroundings. He had expected a magically-enlarged wizarding space, but the room would not have looked odd to any Muggle walking in. A large bed took up most of the space, along with a small writing desk, rough-looking chair, and a tall cabinet.
"It is your name, is it not?"
"Yes, but you've never used it before."
"I do when you're not around," Malfoy admitted with a disarming grin. He shut the door and wrapped a fist in Harry's shirt to haul him forwards. "Come here, Harry."
They undressed each other slowly, letting the clothing fall where it would, touching and kissing each bit of skin as it was revealed. Harry's fingers traced the Sectumsempra scar and continued lower, opening the khaki trousers and reaching inside.
Malfoy—or Draco now; he'd been Draco in Harry's mind for a while now, but old habits died hard—made a delicious sound and pulled Harry down to the bed.
"I missed you, too," Draco admitted and kicked the last of his clothing away. Harry did the same, peeling off socks and pants and then pressing himself over all of that lovely, pale skin. He still wasn't quite used to the fact that he was allowed. Despite everything, they had weathered the storm and come out the other side. It wasn't over yet, of course, probably never would be, but Harry hoped the worst was done.
Their first date in London had been a tense affair. Draco, smartly dressed, outwardly cold as ice, inwardly just as nervous as Harry, had walked with him through Diagon Alley to the restaurant Harry had chosen. They had drawn some glances, but that was a common thing for Harry even when he was alone.
Dinner had gone well and Harry had enjoyed himself immensely. It was only after dinner, when they had exited the restaurant and Harry had taken Malfoy's hand, that the true test had begun.
Someone alerted the press and before they had walked far, they had been surrounded by reporters and photographers.
Mr Potter, can you give us a statement? Your readers would very much like to know if you are involved in a relationship with… him. Mr Malfoy, what have you got to say for yourself?
Harry had lifted a hand to silence the masses, the other clenched tightly around Draco's to keep him in place. "Here is my official statement on this matter," Harry had announced. With that, he had turned and kissed Draco long enough for the photo in the next morning's paper to play for a ludicrous length of time. Harry had been pleased enough with it to frame it and place it on his desk at work. When the kiss was done, he had stared piercingly at them all and added, "Also, if I see one incorrect or libellous word printed about either of us, I will have your jobs. Please excuse us."
That hadn't been the end of it, of course. There had been Howlers and threats, pleading letters from not-quite-stable fans, a few surprise spells meant to break whatever "curse" Draco had cast upon Harry, and several love potion antidotes, but the press had been more supportive than expected, as had Harry's friends. Draco's had rallied around him like protective wolves and immediately dragged Harry into their fold.
Within two months they had broken down the walls of prejudice and dislike from their school days, and built something that might stand the test of time. Even after Draco had left for Brazil, Blaise Zabini and Ron Weasley still got together on Wednesday nights to play chess while Pansy Parkinson and Hermione Granger argued. Harry had worried about the latter at first, but it soon became clear that they both liked to argue, no matter the topic, and they seemed to be getting better at it as time went on.
Draco arched beneath him, pulling Harry back to the present. "Yes, like that," Draco said as Harry twisted his hand over Draco's cock while sliding it up the hard shaft. He repeated the motion and Draco groaned.
"Feels like it's been forever. How long are you here?"
"Four days," Harry admitted. "Got to be back on Monday."
Draco was scheduled to be in Brazil for a month, collecting bark, rare plants, and other assorted items for Eugenia Scamander. Harry had been climbing the walls after a week, gnawing his knuckles with worry that Draco would change his mind about them during their separation.
"Don't be stupid. He's been mad for you for years," Zabini had assured him. The words had only made Harry more desperate to see Draco and he'd requested a couple of days off after scheduling the first International Portkey departing for South America.
"Well, we'd best make it count, then," Draco murmured and picked up Harry's wand to cast the usual spell. He always used Harry's wand to do it and Harry always flashed back to that first time in Seattle.
Draco's eyes were half-lidded and his mouth wet from Harry's kisses. His blond hair was a mess, half-flattened from the hat and sticking up in places that would mortify him when he looked in the mirror later. Harry's heart ached at the sight of him, knowing no one else was allowed to see him like this; and no one else ever would, if Harry had anything to say about it.
Harry entered him slowly, meaning to make it last. He kept his eyes fixed on Draco's face, watching every nuance.
"Better cast a Silencing Charm. I have no intention of being quiet."
Harry smiled and picked up his wand. Their lovemaking was vigorous, to say the least. They had broken one bedframe at Grimmauld Place and smashed an antique vase at Malfoy Manor. And Harry's chair at work still listed to the right, despite a vast array of repairing charms…
Spell cast, Harry let go his wand and gripped Draco's hips to thrust deeper, faster, just the way he liked it. Draco pulled his hair, dragging him into a kiss. The bedframe banged against the wall and Harry absently hoped his Silencing Charm was effective.
Draco alternated rough, biting kisses with shouts of encouragement, driving Harry completely wild as sensation built upon itself, starting at his cock and coursing through his veins with every movement, every yes, Harry, there, there…
Something gave with a crack and there was a brief sensation of falling. Bed number two, Harry thought absently, pausing for only a moment before resuming his mission of making Draco Malfoy come apart.
He silenced Draco's chuckle with a tug on his cock, grinning when Draco's eyes darkened and his lids fluttered shut. He threw his head back and Harry kissed his throat, urging him to come with his hand, hoping to keep hitting the spot inside that turned Draco incoherent —with a wordless cry, Draco clenched around him, narrowing Harry's world even farther.
Harry's hand went slick and he shuddered, needing only four pounding thrusts before muffling his own shout in Draco's neck, his release explosive, as always. Every time was good, better than good, and becoming as necessary as breathing.
As he drowsed atop Draco, limp and sated, he realized he'd missed the aftermath just as much as the sex, missed Draco's hand lazily carding through his hair and drawing random patterns on his skin, missed his cock softening inside of him and the taste of Draco's sweat on his lips.
"When do you have to go back out bark-hunting?"
"Tomorrow, I suppose. You can come with me and put your heroic skills to work."
"I just put my heroic skills to work."
Draco chuckled. "Egotist. Some of those trees do look rather sturdy…"
Harry lifted his head to stare at him. "Are you suggesting we have sex in a tree?"
"After the rooftop garden incident, I know you're not a prude."
Harry flushed at the memory. He hadn't known the garden was visible from the windows of the building next door… at first. "You're going to be the death of me."
"Probably," Draco said agreeably.
Harry dropped his head again, perfectly content to doze off until they recovered enough for a second round. Before his eyes drifted shut, he caught sight of Draco's planner on the desk and remembered the white orchid that had inadvertently brought them together. It would always remind him of Draco, pale and beautiful, raised in shadow, requiring extreme care and nurturing to thrive in captivity.
"My little Cephalanthera austiniae," Harry murmured.
"Don't make me hex you, Potter."
I decided not to torture you guys this time and posted it all at once. :D