His cupboard is dark and cold. The ratty blanket is too small for him; he's had the same one since he was five, and there are holes and stains on every inch of its once-fleecy surface. Still he huddles beneath it, its familiar weight curled around his tiny shoulders as he listens to the shouts outside, the cracks of wood splintering and roaring fires. Someone is pounding on the door of his cupboard, and they're pulling the door of its hinges and dragging him into the fight outside. There are faceless people in black or white running all around, blood pouring from wounds and wands firing. He's running through the masses, through the hallways from St Mungos, dodging and weaving through bodies and screams and fire. He wants to stop, help the fallen, run the other way but he can't, he can't, he has to run on and on, but there's blood all around and he's falling. Someone rushes to his side but it's not Kingsley, Kingsley is tall and dark and strong and this boy is pale and slim and pretty. He sees the Death Eater sneaking up behind his saviour, raising their wand. He has to protect him, stop the wizard and protect -
Harry was already shooting off a spell as he wrenched out of his nightmare. He was out of bed and armed before his eyes were open, defences up, magic ready. His deep green eyes flicked around the room, searching for threats and dangers, seeing nothing out of the ordinary but a smoking black smudge on his bedside table where his alarm clock had been. The wizard sighed. Poor little clock. I probably can't fix you this time.
Harry re-holstered his wand in its invisible holster on his chest, shaking his head at his own paranoia. He took deep breaths as his heart rate began to slow from Fight-Or-Flight to relative relaxation, the images from his nightmare still flickering in his head. Fuck, that was with a Calming Draught. Here's to hoping it's just a bad night and not a sign that it isn't working anymore.
Harry sat back down on the edge of his bed, reaching into his bedside table for another Draught. He swallowed it with a grimace, the once-pleasant taste beginning to burn his throat as he took more and more of it. He dumped the empty vial into his drawer with a scowl, rubbing his face with one calloused hand. He winced when it tugged his scars, pulling the pink flesh taut where there wasn't any room to give. They never let him forget that they were there; they either itched or ached as the skin tried to heal against the efforts of Bellatrix's poison. Talk about your constant reminders.
There was a tentative knock on his door, and Harry slipped his wand back out to un-Silence his voice.
"Come in," he rasped, wincing when he heard how weak it was. Must have been screaming last night. Shit. Thank Merlin for Silencing Charms. His door slipped open a little, Remus sticking his head in nervously. Harry gave him a weak smile.
"I - uh - I heard a noise from in here. Everything all right?" the werewolf asked tentatively, eying the blackened patch of table where the clock had been. Harry sighed.
"Yeah, fine. The clock just startled me awake."
"What spell did you use?" Remus asked curiously, hesitantly running a finger over the burn mark. He pulled his finger back quickly with a hiss, the tip slightly red, and the patch of dark wood seemed to glow a little. Harry shrugged, sheepishly scratching his face.
"No idea. I may have just blasted it with pure magic. I do that sometimes, when I'm startled. It does something different every time, I can't predict it."
"Pure magic is a bit like that. I've only done that once, when I was about your age. I was cornered by a group of muggle thugs and I accidentally turned them all into jack-in-the-boxes. I would have been arrested if I hadn't been able to prove that it was raw magic," Remus recalled, shaking his head. He shifted in the doorway, smiling an understanding smile. "I'll get you a new clock today. You'd better get ready. You're meeting Kurt for breakfast, aren't you?"
"Yes! Right, I'd better hurry. Thanks, Remus," Harry waved vaguely as Remus slipped back outside and closed the door, stepping over his comforter, which was in a tangled heap on the floor, and approaching his wardrobe. He shook off the last uneasiness left over from the dream and turned his thoughts to something much more preferable; Kurt, his boyfriend of exactly two months today.
It wasn't hard to think about him. Not only was the flamboyant countertenor always close to the front of Harry's mind, he had recently insisted on helping the wizard redecorate his room and buy a new wardrobe, so everywhere Harry looked there were little touches of Kurt.
"A room is meant to be an expression of yourself, Harry," Kurt had insisted, gesturing earnestly with a swatch of paint colours in the isle of the local hardware store. "You told me yourself that then you decorated originally you were just trying to look like a stereotypical teenager. Now is your chance to infuse your space with your personality, with something that speaks to you and you can connect with... and something that compliments your skin tone."
"Uh huh," Harry had drawled doubtfully, pining Kurt with an amused look over the carpet samples in his arms. "I'm sure it has nothing to do with letting you play interior designer on a millionaires budget."
Kurt had flushed red at that, his insistent expression shifting into guilty, and he had dropped his blue green eyes down. He had shot Harry a sheepish glance and muttered, "Well, that may be a little part of it. Not all of it! I really do think that you should have a nice space, but..."
"It's fine, love," Harry had then leaned over the carpet samples and pressed a light kiss to Kurt's cheek, having to rock up onto his toes to do so. "You're right, the room does lack any real personality. But I'm not going with silver and green. It has bad connotations for me, I'll tell you sometime."
The end result was a room that delighted Kurt, satisfied Harry, and confused Remus. The walls were a silver-tinted lilac, the carpet was grey, and all the furniture was white and curly. It was very girly, and Harry admitted that, but it just felt right to him; almost like being at Hogwarts, where everything was fancy and ornate. As for the purple -
"It's my favourite colour, okay?" Harry had huffed at Kurt's raised eyebrow when he'd pointed out the paint, making the flamboyant boy giggle.
"Hey, I'm not judging, sweetie. In fact, it's a good colour for you. Looks good against dark hair and brings out your eyes. If I can't get you in green, it might just be the next best thing," Kurt had hummed as he squinted at the paint, a playful smile twitching at his lips. "I'm just picturing Finn's face the first time you invite him over."
"I'll set up a camera to record the moment. Now what were you saying about lampshades?"
It had taken them hours, time that Harry thought could have been much better spent cuddling in front of Moulin Rouge on Kurt's couch, but they'd gotten it together and roped Finn and Rachel into helping paint, finally setting up Harry's room in a way that felt more like Harry. Gone was the Manchester United poster - in its place was signed RENT poster that Harry had found online. The soccer ball was gone from the corner, replaced by an MP3 player dock for Harry to blast out his music as he practiced steps for Glee or just did homework at his desk. The pictures of his parents and Ron and Hermione had new companions - photographs of the Glee club from Sectionals and in rehearsals, with a picture of Harry and Kurt singing karaoke at the post-Sectionals party in pride of place. The wizard let his eyes linger on that one as he walked into his wardrobe, on Kurt's wide smile and sparkling eyes, before he had to pay attention so as to not trip on any of his suddenly numerous shoes.
The clothes were also Kurt's idea, but Harry's choice. Kurt had reminded Harry of his promise to allow Kurt to take him shopping if the taller boy had resisted the urge to kill Rachel the week after Sectionals and Delmonico's arrest, and before Harry knew what was happening he was sitting in the passenger seat of Kurt's enormous car, Mercedes, Tina and Rachel squished into the back and Santana, Brittany and Quinn in the car behind theirs, driving off to the closest decent mall to Lima in Columbus. Kurt and the girls had screamed along to a Britney Spears song Harry didn't know while the wizard had surreptitiously filmed and photographed them on his phone. The six girls and two boys had covered barely half the mall that day, despite being there from opening til closing, and Harry had tried on so many clothes that at one point he'd simply walked shirtless from one department to another - he hadn't seen any point in putting his t-shirt back on if he was only going to take it off in a minute. He had been a little worried about offending the girls, but it had just made Tina and Rachel blush, amused Quinn and Mercedes, and sent Brittany and Santana into paroxysm of laughter when they had seen Kurt's reaction. The flamboyant boy had frozen mid-sentence when he'd looked up, his mouth dropping open at the sight of Harry's pale, scarred chest on display. Harry had flushed under his gaze.
"We're only going about 12 metres," he'd pointed out in a mutter, his shirt over one shoulder. "I'm getting sick of taking it off. Sorry, I know the scars are kind of gross."
"Scars?" Kurt had asked, his voice faraway. Mercedes had started laughing here, and Santana had swaggered over and slipped an arm around Harry's bare shoulders.
"I think what Lady Face means to say is that he couldn't see the scars for the six-pack," she had drawled, making Brittany grin and Rachel blush darker. Harry had blinked at her, finally raising a quizzical eyebrow.
"I'm... sorry? I don't understand what you mean."
"Never mind," Kurt had interrupted, face red and eyes glaring furiously at the smirking Santana. "It's fine. You look fine-"
"Shut up Santana. Let's just head over to the button-ups."
They'd gone to the button ups, then the jeans, then the shoes, then moved onto another store to repeat the process. At every store at least one girl would get distracted by a pair of shoes or some earrings, or on one memorable occasion We R Who We R coming onto the radio, prompting the eight teenagers to stop and dance along. At another point Mercedes had dragged them into a comic book shop, citing an embarrassing love of them, and while Quinn and Harry browsed (she for her boyfriend, him for Ron) the rest of the group had converged in a corner to gossip. By the time Harry and Quinn managed to drag Mercedes away from an argument with the store clerk about indie comics versus mainstream they had to save Kurt, Tina, and the two other Cheerios from an angry diatribe by Rachel on feminism and women in comic books. Despite all the disruptions and the tedium of trying on clothes, Harry had enjoyed that day. There was a lot of laughter and camaraderie, and while Kurt did suggest some pretty out there clothes ("Kurt, are those sequins?" "...Maybe." "No.") he took it well when Harry vetoed them. In return, Harry allowed himself to be plied with accessories and far more clothes than he actually needed, admitting quietly to Tina that he had no idea how to accessorise and most of the scarves and brooches they had bought would sit untouched in his room. She had smiled sympathetically and gone back to texting Mike.
Today, however, he felt like he should make an effort. It had been two months since he'd finally wised up and realised that he had feelings for Kurt, two months of confessions and dates and chaste kisses, and to celebrate he'd asked the boy out to breakfast and bought him a little present; a pair of crystal cuff-links that Kurt would kill him for buying if he knew the price. Harry grabbed clothes haphazardly, trying to remember which pieces Kurt liked, finally settling on a black button-down with a purple t-shirt underneath, black jeans and a pair of boots. After a moment's hesitation he also grabbed a brooch in the shape of an owl; his concession to accessorising. Despite hours of watching Project Runway and Next Top Model with Kurt, clothes were still somewhat of a mystery to Harry. I'm still going to look like a tween eyesore, what the hell difference does it make if my jeans are designer? Whatever, Kurt will like it.
Harry jumped in the shower quickly, charming himself dry before tugging his clothes on. He wondered what time Kurt had gotten up at in order to get ready, concluding that it had probably been at least an hour ago, before heading back into his room to grab his stuff for school. He shouted a quick goodbye to Remus as he ran out the door, eager to get to Kurt's, and tried to ignore the sight of the empty Calming Draught vials on the kitchen bench.
Kurt's baby was parked in Harry's driveway when he walked out the front door, Kurt sliding out of the driver's seat and shutting the door. Harry's slipped into an involuntary smile when he caught sight of his boyfriend, his grin stretching a little wider when he took in the boy's red jeans, black button up, and red bow-tie - it was the same outfit he had worn the day they had met.
"Good morning, beautiful," Harry murmured as he reached Kurt's side. Kurt was smiling as widely as Harry, reaching out to wrap his arms around the smaller boys shoulder and pull him into a gentle kiss.
"Hello to you too, handsome," Kurt rolled his eyes at Harry's scoff, pinching the boy's waist with two fingers. "Enough of that, you look gorgeous today. Purple really is your colour. And you accessorised! I feel special."
"You should," Harry agreed, reluctantly dropping his hands off Kurt's shoulders to reach into his bag. "I got you a little something."
"My version of little or your version of little?" Kurt asked suspiciously, pulling back a little. "Because your version of little seems to be a little different from mine."
"The scarf I got you for our one-month-aversery was little."
"It cost $600, Harry."
"Yeah, but it was small."
"Harry," Kurt's voice held a note of warning, even as his lips twitched into a smile and his eyes sparkled with happiness at the sight of the carefully wrapped box and the blue-green ribbons tied lovingly around it. "It's very sweet, but you don't need to spend so much on me."
"Who else am I going to spend it on?" Harry shrugged, pressing the gift into Kurt's long-fingered hands. "I'm not trying to buy you, love. I just like spoiling you a little bit. You deserve it."
Kurt took the gift in one hand, raising the other to cup Harry's cheek. He ducked his head down to press their lips together, then pulled back to look into Harry's eyes, "Being with you is reward enough for anything. But thank you, Harry."
"You haven't even opened it yet," Harry pointed out, feeling his face heat up. Kurt giggled.
"I'm getting there," Kurt tugged the ribbon off the box, carefully slipping it into his pocket. He peeled off the tape delicately, unfolding the wrapping paper like it was the present, rather than keeping him from it. He raised an eyebrow when he saw the silver embossed lettering on the lid of the box, and he shot Harry a droll look. "Swarovski, Harry? Really? That's not little."
"It's tiny," Harry corrected, sticking his tongue out a little. "Open it!"
Kurt dutifully removed the lid, sighing happily when he saw the glittering cuff-links. "Harry, they're gorgeous."
"So you match then," the wizard quipped, and Kurt just shot him an affectionately exasperated look. Kurt sniffed, trying to look disapproving but ruining it by grinning.
"Well, even if you were very bad in getting me something so expensive when I told you not to," he began, already handing the box for Harry to hold so he could undo the cuff-links he was already wearing. "Thank you, Harry. I love them."
"You're welcome," Harry smiled softly as Kurt put them on, admiring the way the soft light of early morning played on Kurt's pale skin. "Happy two-month-aversary."
"Happy two-month-aversary," Kurt giggled, taking the box from Harry's hands and tossing it through the open driver's door window into the car so he could crush the smaller boy into a hug. He jumped away pretty quickly, pulling his door open and jumping up into the car. "Now come on! If we want breakfast before school we're going to have to hurry."
"Right," Harry agreed, hurrying around to the passenger door and climbing in. He blushed a little at Kurt's sympathetic look as he hoisted himself up - the car was a little too high for him to be comfortable. I should start carrying around a box to stand on. Or a step ladder. Kurt politely didn't say anything.
"How did you sleep?" Harry asked as Kurt backed out of the driveway. Kurt gave a fluttering laugh and blushed.
"Terribly. I was up half the night trying to decide what to wear, and then I was so excited I couldn't sleep."
"And finally you settled on what you wore when we first met?" Harry grinned, reached out with one finger to trace the silver thread on the cuffs. Kurt shot him a smile.
"Well, it seemed to make an impression then," he pointed out loftily, raising an eyebrow. "Though I'm still impressed you remembered what I wore the first day we met."
"Yeah, get Ron and Hermione to tell you about the Pants Thing some times. I'm sure they'll be delighted to tell you."
"How are they, anyway?" Kurt asked, eyes firmly on the road as they stopped at a red light."Have you spoken to them since last week? How did Hermione's protest go?"
"Which one? The one where two thousand people showed up in a ministerial office and sang or the one where she stormed a minister's office and spent six hours arguing with him?" Harry deadpanned, shaking his head. As far as Kurt knew the protests were about rights for refugees, and technically they had been; refugee centaurs who were being displaced from their forests. "She nearly got arrested for causing incidents in both of them."
"Why wasn't she?" Kurt asked, laughter in his voice. "And what were they singing, if I may ask?"
"I have no idea what they were singing, I was afraid to ask, but Hermione..." Harry paused, hesitating like he always did when he had to bring up some way he was 'special'. He didn't like lying to Kurt about his past, even though nothing he said was technically incorrect, but there were times when half-truths were all he could give. Now, at least, he could give Kurt most of the truth. "She gets away with a lot because she technically has security clearance that allows her into any minister's office. She isn't meant to use it for that, but they can't actually stop her."
"Security clearance? Because she trained with you?" Kurt slowed for a stop sign and took a moment to shoot Harry a curious look. The wizard nodded with an embarrassed shrug. "Does that mean you had security clearance too?"
"Yeah," he said shortly, looking out the window. Kurt dropped the subject instantly; he knew Harry well enough not to push. Harry knew how curious Kurt was about his past, about his training and the things he could do, but he never asked or pushed Harry to talk about it. He just quietly offered his ear and his support, slyly changed the subject when any of the Gleeks mentioned the British War, and convinced the Glee boys to watch Burlesque rather than Die Hard on their movie night when he saw Harry's face as he looked at the cover.
("For you, it's an action packed thriller. For me, it's a flashback waiting to happen," the wizard had grumbled as he and Kurt grabbed popcorn from the kitchen. Kurt had just kissed him on the cheek.
"It's okay, sweetie. Christina Aguilera gets naked in Burlesque, and I told them that it would get them points with their girlfriends, so the boys will be happy. It's not like they haven't all seen Die Hard a hundred times anyway.")
Harry turned away from the window to look at Kurt, who was shooting him worried glances out of the corner of his eye. Harry smiled at him, relaxing a little now that his past wasn't the topic of conversation, and cheerfully added, "Also, Ron snapped and called his academy instructor a raging twatpumpkin."
"A what?" Kurt laughed, relaxing his hands on the steering wheel a little. Harry shrugged.
"A twatpumpkin. He didn't know what it meant either, it just sort of burst out. Surprisingly, the instructor wasn't angry. He just started laughing, because he apparently had a thing about pumpkins. He has an enormous pumpkin tattoo on his back that he showed Ron, and they spent the next two hours trading pumpkin soup recipes and discussing pumpkin carving."
"What is... I don't even..." Kurt was shaking his head, and when they pulled up at another set of lights he looked over at Harry with a bemused expression. "Your friends have the weirdest lives, Harry, I swear."
"Tell me about it," Harry shut his eyes lazily as the light turned green and Kurt turned back to driving. "I used to think -"
He was cut off by a startled cry from Kurt and the sensation of the car suddenly serving to the side. There were tires screeching and he was thrown into the window, and when he heard the crunch of metal his magic kicked in and through a shield around him. But the car was undamaged, and Kurt was quietly swearing to himself as he pulled over to the side of the road, undid his seat belt and jumped out. Harry looked around wildly, his magic and his pulse racing under his skin as he tried to work out what had just happened. He could see out the window a car with its bonnet smashed on a light post, a dazed man climbing out of the passenger seat with a cell phone in his hand. He wasn't bleeding and didn't appear to be hurt, and Kurt was rushing over to him shouting.
He must have run the light and nearly hit us. I should get out and help Kurt.
Harry moved to undo his seat belt, glancing down as he did it.
My hands are shaking. That isn't right, they shouldn't be shaking. Why are they shaking?
He looked up again with a frown, looking for Kurt. He was still talking to the man who had crashed, hands on his hips and waving apologetically to passing motorists as the man looked at his feet. Harry could feel sweat trickling down the side of his face, could feel his pulse racing under his skin as his magic faded and left a strong uneasiness, making his skin crawl. He glanced around, noting the cars slowing down to see what was happening, pedestrians stopping to point at the crumpled car. He sat alone in the Navigator and shook.
Five witnesses to the accident, three people over now. Siren in the distance, police are coming. My hands are shaking, why are they shaking? It's too hot in here, I can't breathe - six cars have passed since, it's been two minutes and thirty one, thirty two, thirty three - too hot, why can't I move? I should get out of the car - I can't move. I can't breathe and I can't move and I'm going to die in here, I can't breathe I can't breathe I can't breathe -
He flinched when cool, soft hands suddenly covered his where they were clutching at his seat belt. He could hear a sweet voice calling his name, but it sounded like he was hearing it under water. One of the hands was suddenly on his face and tugging his head around to look into frightened blue-green eyes.
"Harry," the sound rushed back to him, and he could hear Kurt saying his name. He suddenly realised that he was hyperventilating, and crying, and he had no idea how long either of those things had been happening.
Panic attack. Hold breath, reduce carbon dioxide in blood, allow regular breathing to resume.
Kurt was crouched over him in the driver's seat of the Navigator, quietly repeating his name and squeezing his hands and stroking his hair, "Harry, sweetie, it's all right. No one was hurt, everything is okay. We're safe, Harry, it was just a little accident and we're totally okay now. The police are here, they're dealing with it, we don't have to do anything else. Just take deep breathes, that's good. There's nothing to be afraid of."
Harry latched onto the comforting words, forcing his breathing to slow by breathing in, holding the breath, then forcing himself to breathe out for several seconds. His hands shakily let go of the seat belt to cling to Kurt's, dropping his head forward as a few more tears leaked out from behind his eyes. There were a few moments of shifting, then Kurt was sliding across to sit on the edge of Harry's seat and pulling the smaller boy into a one armed embrace. Harry leaned against him gratefully, using Kurt's solid presence to sooth his nerves and help him calm down.
Everything is fine. There was an accident, but no one was hurt and Kurt is safe. You're okay.
"I'm sorry," Harry managed to choke out against Kurt's chest. "I don't even know why-"
"Harry, it's fine," Kurt assured him, and Harry sighed when he felt a gentle kiss pressed to the top of his head. "You can't control what your body does. I'm sorry I was so busy yelling at the idiot who almost hit us that I didn't notice at first."
"It's not your job to babysit me," Harry muttered, pulling back a little to scrub viciously at his still leaking eyes. "Fuck, what happened anyway?"
"He was texting and didn't notice the light was red," Kurt rolled his eyes, reaching into his pocket and bringing out a monogrammed handkerchief. He handed it to Harry without a word, waving off the boy's thank you. "There are some very stupid people in this town. In fact, I would even go so far as to say a lot of stupid people. But never mind. Are you feeling any better?"
"Much," Harry smiled weakly up at Kurt as he wiped the tears from his eyes and face. "I really am sorry for freaking out, I didn't even know it was happening for ages-"
"I told you, it's fine," Kurt rolled his eyes a little, but smiled to show he wasn't annoyed. "Really, I had it under control. I even found a use for the word twatpumpkin when I found out that the guy had been texting while driving. Now the police are handling it and we can go. I'm not sure we have time for breakfast now, though."
Harry winced, "Shit, I'm sorry. Wait, how long have we been here for? It can't have been that long."
"It's been nearly 20 minutes, Harry," Kurt's voice was gentle as he slid back over to his seat, wincing when he saw a slight scuff on one of his shoes from crawling over. "Damn it! These are real Docs."
"20 minutes?" Harry rocked back in his seat, his head hitting the back rest with a dull thump. "I didn't - it didn't feel like that long! How long were you in the car for?"
"About five minutes before you started reacting," Kurt admitted, his face creasing with worry as Harry shook his head. "Sweetie, it's okay."
"No it isn't. I ruined our plans," Harry muttered, scowling at his hands. Stupid, stupid, stupid, what were you even scared of? Nothing happened!"I'm so sorry, Kurt. I took my Dra - my meds this morning, that shouldn't have happened, fuck. I'm sorry."
"You can shut up now," Kurt rolled his eyes, leaning over to press a kiss to Harry's still flushed face. "Because I'm not angry, because it wasn't your fault. I understand, okay? Don't be so hard on yourself. Now how about we just swing by the Lima Bean and grab something to take to school? We can have a picnic in the choir room or something. We might even have enough time to have it there."
"Yeah, okay," Harry nodded, still blinking back furious tears. Merlin, I'm so pathetic. One loud noise and an unexpected movement and I'm a wreck. And now I'm going to be on edge for the rest of the day. How did that even happen with a Calming Draught in my system? It shouldn't have been possible... unless Remus is right and you can develop a tolerance for them. Shit, do I need to take two now? That can't be good for me. Can you overdose on Calming Draughts? I'm already taking way too many, it's only meant to be what, 3 a week? I take two a day. Bumping that up to four can't be healthy-
"Harry? We're here," Kurt's soft voice cut into Harry's thoughts, soothing him a little and making him look up. Sure enough, they were in the Lima Bean parking lot and Kurt was looking at him and biting his lip. Harry squeezed his eyes shut for second, took a deep breath and released it on a hard sigh. He glanced up again, catching Kurt's blue-green eyes and smiling.
Kurt smiled back, and the two boys slipped out of the car and walked into the coffee shop hand in hand. Harry insisted that Kurt sit down while Harry got their drinks, and the taller boy agreed with a reluctant smile, promising to get the check the next time they went out. Harry placed their order and paid, leaving a ten dollar note in the tip jar when the Barista made a heart in the foam of Kurt's coffee, and walked back to his and Kurt's table.
Kurt wasn't alone.
Harry couldn't see who it was from where he was standing, but he could see a man with dark hair and a black coat sitting across from Kurt and holding his hands. Kurt was grinning, his eyes lit up and he was talking animatedly, apparently not concerned that his hands were being held.
Harry cautiously walked the last few steps to his and Kurt's table, and Kurt seemed to see him out of the corner of his eye. His face lit up even further, and he greeted Harry cheerfully, "Hey sweetie! Look who I ran into?"
The man holding Kurt's hands looked up and around at Harry with a smile. It was the Dalton lead they had met at Sectionals, still as handsome and dapper as he had been in his uniform. Shit, what was his name? Blair, Blake...?
"Blaine was just admiring my new cuff-links," Kurt informed Harry cheerfully, his smile becoming a little knowing at the slight relief on Harry's face. Blaine! That was it. Thanks Kurt!
"I certainly was," Blaine agreed, getting to his feet. His smile didn't waver as he vacated the seat and stood beside Harry. "You have excellent taste, Harry."
"Thank you," the wizard muttered, flushing a little, very aware of the way the not-particularly-tall Dalton boy still towered over him. He put Kurt drink and muffin in front of him quietly and slipped into the seat Blaine had vacated, forcing himself to smile at the standing boy. He knew he must look a mess right now - eyes red from crying, face scarred and flushed - and he felt a little embarrassed. Kurt didn't seem to notice, just chatting to Blaine about a new book that had recently come about, a biography on someone famous that Harry had only vaguely heard of. They didn't talk for long, Blaine quickly realising that he was interrupting and excusing himself.
"Well, I had better leave you two love birds to your date," he beamed down at them, reaching down to shake both off their hands at the same time, making Kurt giggle. "Lovely to see you both again. I'll see you around!"
"Bye!" Kurt chirped, and Harry waved as the boy wandered away, his take away coffee in his hand. Kurt turned back to Harry with a smile, holding out a hand for Harry to take. "He seems really nice! I wonder what he's doing in Lima? He said that Dalton is off today, some kind of teacher meeting but isn't it in Westerville? He can't live in Lima, can he?"
"I don't know, but I'm pretty sure you're right about Dalton being in Westerville. I almost went there," Harry nodded, taking Kurt's hand in his and reaching for his tea with the other. "It's a long way to come for a coffee."
"Maybe he lives closer by?" Kurt took a thoughtful sip of his coffee, and Harry tried to bite into his cookie. Damn it, this thing is as hard as Hagrid's rock cakes! And they may actually have been rocks! He put it in the side of his mouth to try and use his jaw to crack it, with no luck. He tried to break it in his hands, but it resisted. Finally he just shoved it into his mouth and tried to wear away at it. The wizard heard Kurt giggle and glanced up from his gnawing. The taller boy was covering his smile with an elegant hand, but couldn't conceal the twinkle in his eyes. "Oh Harry, you look like a mouse or something! You're adorable, you know that?"
Harry blushed a little, but managed to quip, "Well, I suppose if sexy and gorgeous are out of the question, 'adorably mouse-like' will have to do."
"You're sexy and gorgeous as well, but you're also adorable," Kurt informed him seriously, rolling his eyes at Harry scoff. "One day you will believe me when I talk, Mr Potter."
"I am well aware that you are the good-looking one in this relationship, and that's fine. You do an amazing job and you're gorgeous enough for both of us," Harry brought Kurt's hand up to his lips, lightly kissing his knuckles and making Kurt flush. "You're also the funny one and the smart one. I'll have to settle for being the one who gets to bask in your radiant presence."
"You are so full of it," Kurt informed him affectionately. Harry just grinned and stole Kurt's muffin. Looks like the morning wasn't a total bust after all. Now I just have to hope nothing else today sets me off.
IMPORTANT AUTHOR'S NOTE
A/N: Yes, it's finally here; the first chapter of the sequel to Anonymity!
Important stuff first - this will not be a happy story. This chapter is cheerful, but it's all down-hill from here. This story is about Harry reaching his breaking point, and while I guarantee a happy ending - I can't function without them - it won't be easy to get there. Remus isn't a good guy in this. He isn't bad, he isn't evil, but he will do some pretty terrible things due to his mental illness. I just wanted to make it clear from the very start that I'm not bashing him at all. I like him very much as a character in the books, but here he is an unstable, unreliable person. There is no bad guy. There is no good guy. There's no-one for Harry to fight or defeat - only his own demons. If it isn't your cup of tea, feel free to move on. I won't be offended. However, I am working super, super hard to portray mental health issues that, given Harry's background, I don't think are unrealistic. I love all of my readers so much (except you, Draco. I can't fucking stand you *points for reference*). Reviews make my day, and I'll work very hard to keep to a weekly updating schedule but this story is a lot harder to write than Anonymity.
Remember to check out TrueGlee dot net for Glee fic recommendations and stuff. I promise more features are coming soon, I'm just waiting on my sister's term to finish. I will eventually be posting a side-series in the Anonymity 'Verse over there called Sexual Experimentation for the Borderline Asexual, for those of you who are interested. I'll keep you posted in author's notes.
(Also, thank you to the reviewer who pointed out that I'd misspelled Draught every single time in Anonymity. I never realised that draught and drought were spelled differently, and neither did my beta readers. #fail)
This story will contain references to severe depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation. If you feel that any of these things may be triggering to you, please do not continue to read this story.