Disclaimer: All Harry Potter characters herein are the property of J.K. Rowling and Bloomsbury/Scholastic. No copyright infringement is intended.
Warning(s): Spanking, light bondage, inappropriate use of completely innocent spells.
Author's Notes: Epilogue? What epilogue? This also ignores the bit in DH where Harry repaired his wand with the Elder Wand. Otherwise DH compliant. This was originally posted in the HD-Holidays fest on livejournal. All the thanks go to coolbreeeze and OnTheTurningAway for being the best brainstormers, editors, and supporters ever.
"Mate, you're going to have to do something about it, or I'm going to report you myself."
"You wouldn't, Ron!"
Harry plopped down in his desk chair and finally let his muscles relax. It had been a long day, busting into the greenhouse of an illegal potions supplier. Sorting and confiscating all the illegal plants and
tracking their quantities had taken all day, even after they called in Neville for consultation. Ron followed suit, sinking into his chair and propping his feet up on their shared, and rather messy, desk.
"You're going to hurt yourself. Or me. And I rather like having my head attached to my body, yeah?" Despite the humour in his delivery, Harry knew Ron was being completely serious about reporting him to Roberts.
"I only took the top off a Mandrake. It wasn't that bad," he joked, trying to defuse the situation with a laugh.
"The look on Herbie's face was kind of priceless. Even Neville's not that possessive of his plants," Ron replied, as he fought the corners of his mouth from twitching up. "But you could have been doing a much worse spell."
Harry didn't tell Ron the full truth, that he actually hadn't meant to cast a Diffindo at all. It was absurd to even think it, and he knew it, but it was almost as if his wand had cast the spell itself. Harry was
certain he hadn't said the word, and even though he was becoming quite proficient at non-verbal spells, he still knew when he was performing one and when he wasn't.
"I guess maybe I should have Ollivander take a look at it," Harry conceded.
"Well, you'd better do it soon. 'Mione was telling me just the other day about Ollivander finally finding a replacement."
"Yeah, apparently he was thinking about retiring before the, well, before..." Ron trailed off, but Harry didn't need an explanation.
Ollivander had spent the better part of two years trapped in the Malfoy dungeons, and even though Fleur and Bill had taken great care to restore his strength after the rescue, he was just never the same. Garrick Ollivander had a brilliant mind and at least another 50 years of wandmaking left in him. His story was just another casualty of the war. Harry wondered if he would ever stop seeing the effects of Voldemort's terror.
Harry cleared his throat. "Well, I guess I should see him this week, then. We should get started on this paperwork, yeah?"
"Right," Ron grumbled.
They worked on filing the case report until the clacking of heels on tile indicated that Hermione was heading their way at an angry clip.
"Ronald Bilius, we had dinner plans with Neville and Hannah tonight!"
"It wasn't my fault this time! The bust we made today was huge, and Roberts wants the report first thing tomorrow."
"Nev flooed me and told me all about it. We made plans for Thursday instead."
"Then why did you storm in here like a wounded hippogriff?"
Hermione reached over and smacked Ron upside the head.
"It didn't occur to you to floo your pregnant wife to let her know you'd be working late?"
"It was my fault?" Harry threw in timidly.
"Honestly," Hermione said, removing a stack of files from the spare chair with a flick of her wand and leaving them in a neat pile on the floor. "If you had flooed me hours ago, you could have had this thing done by now. Now, what's left?"
Even though Hermione had her own work in the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures, old habits died hard. She knew more about filing Auror reports than at least two-thirds of the Auror Department, Ron and Harry included. Harry had a suspicion there was a job in the Department of Magical Law Enforcement in her future.
With Hermione's help, they had the report finished and in Roberts' inbox in less than an hour.
"Wanna run down to the pub and grab a bite?" Ron asked Harry as they headed toward the elevator. "The Harpies are in town. I'm sure Ginny'll be there, without that stupid oaf."
Hermione rolled her eyes at Harry, who stifled a laugh. Viktor Krum remained the bane of Ron's existence. He and Ginny had been on the Quidditch All-Star team the previous season, and while reminiscing about the Triwizard Tournament, apparently one thing had led to another. They'd been dating for six months, much to Ron's chagrin.
He had been surprisingly supportive when Harry and Ginny's attempt to get back together after the war failed miserably. Ginny was more interested in starting her Quidditch career and Harry just wasn't ready for a relationship. It took him a lot longer to get used to not fearing for his life every time he turned a corner than he anticipated. He threw himself into Auror training, then work, and he just didn't seem to find time for meeting anyone, let alone serious dating.
Of course, Hermione tried to set him up with as many of her co-workers and new friends as possible. When Harry didn't ask any of the women out a second time, Hermione started setting him up with men. At first Harry was incredulous, but he found he didn't actually mind going out with blokes. Occasionally those dates at least ended in a handjob, but they never amounted to a second date.
Harry and Ginny remained friends, and it was Ginny who he complained to about the bad dates he suffered at Hermione's hand. She still teased him about the bloke with the nervous hiccoughing tick who had the nerve to ask Harry for an autograph after Harry got done blowing him in the bathroom of the restaurant.
Even though the once deemed "Golden Trio" were as close as ever, Harry just didn't feel up to a night at the pub.
"Sorry, I'm knackered. I think I'm just going to call it a night. I'll see Gin later this week."
"It has been a long day," Ron admitted. "I'll probably only be good for a quick kip myself."
"Good night, Harry," Hermione said as they reached the Apparition point. She gave him a look that warned Harry he was either in for a lecture or another blind date. Probably both.
"Good night, 'Mione. See you tomorrow, Ron."
As soon as he got home, he called for Kreacher to help him with dinner. He and the house elf had reached some sort of tacit agreement to live together peacefully. At Hermione's insistence, Kreacher was a contracted worker, but Kreacher had only signed it because Harry ordered him to and he wouldn't take anything resembling payment.
"Say, Kreacher?" Harry asked before the house elf tried to escape to his own quarters with his dinner. "Have you ever heard anything about a wand turning on its owner?"
Kreacher narrowed his eyes at Harry.
"Kreacher doesn't know about wandmagic. Foolish Harry Potter."
Without another word, Kreacher slipped out of the kitchen.
Harry sat down at the table and forced himself to think about the situation. He had been cursed before, and it definitely didn't feel like that. His wand never left his sight, so it was extremely unlikely that it had been cursed. Maybe he had just been sold a defective wand.
Wandmakers weren't particularly rare. Some still used the old method of wandmaking, where the buyer would choose their wand core based on their own affinity. It often had little to do with their magical power and the result was a wand with less control and precision as an Ollivander wand.
That's why after the war was over, after the funerals and the trials, one of the first things Harry did as a step to getting life back to some semblance of normal was go to Ollivander's to get a new wand. Ollivander had reopened his shop as soon as he was healthy enough. A lot of wands had been damaged in the battle, and his skills were in high demand.
Harry was actually one of his first customers. He had been using Malfoy's wand for months, but he didn't feel right keeping it. Plus, he never really wanted to delve into why the wand responded so well to him. He wasn't anything like Malfoy, so it had to have been some coincidence of their magic. As soon as he got his new wand, he'd sent Malfoy's back to him via owl post. A terse thank you note came to him the next day, but Harry thought it was probably more for testifying on Draco and Narcissa's behalf than for the wand.
His replacement wand was the same as the original – holly, 11 inches, phoenix feather core. Harry had no idea how Ollivander got more phoenix feathers, but he didn't think to ask. He had been a little disappointed at first. He figured now that Voldemort was gone, something would have shifted, and a new wand would have chosen him. Ever since it had been acting up on him, he had secretly hoped there was something wrong with it.
The first time an incident happened, Harry was luckily alone at home, so no one other than Kreacher was there to witness him setting the stove on fire when he just meant to light the burner. The house elf just chalked it up to Harry's general inferiority.
A few days later, Harry accidentally put a hole through the wall which resulted in a scolding from Aunt Walburga. Even with the cover thrown over her, Harry could still hear her tirade about mudbloods not being able to use magic properly. Harry was hoping his wand would have the decency to fire a spell that would shut her up for good. He got in the habit of pointing it at the portrait every time he went upstairs. Unfortunately, his wand never misfired when he wanted it to.
The third time was during a raid. Only, Harry got lucky and the binding spell he cast trapped the perpetrator's arms against his sides, making him drop his wand. When Ron commented that he hadn't even heard Harry cast it, Harry made up some excuse about learning non-verbal versions of spells.
Unfortunately, that somehow managed to get around to Roberts, who asked him to run a workshop on it in case any of the other Aurors had the talent, so he really did have to start learning non-verbal magic. He practiced every night for weeks and eventually managed to cast a few simple spells, but nothing close to a body-binding spell. Luckily the normal increase in crime that happened around the holidays kicked in and the department was too busy for workshops.
For a while Harry ignored it, but when the spontaneous spell-casting started increasing in frequency, he knew Ron was right. Harry should have gone to Ollivander's after the first time his wand misfired, but he didn't want to believe it.
Of course, the real reason he hadn't got it checked earlier was that he was afraid.
His wand felt the same way it always had. It had the right balance, and it just felt right in his hand. Ollivander did as fine work as he ever had, and that's what had Harry worried. He didn't really think there was anything wrong with his wand, and if that was the case, it meant the problem was with him.
Harry managed to put off Ollivander's for another couple days, but Ron finally threatened to tell Hermione and Harry knew he was serious. So, that Saturday morning he found himself in Diagon Alley, wrapped tightly in a cloak to steel himself against the December wind. He figured as long as he was there he should probably get some of his Christmas shopping in, so he stopped off at Flourish and Blotts first. There he managed to find a rare book about grindylows he was sure Hermione didn't own. Ron was next on his list, but he always bought him Chudley Cannons tickets, even after Ginny started playing professionally and probably could have scored him box seats. That gave him an idea, he could get Ginny her favorite broom wax that could only be found at Quality Quidditch.
He was walking past Ollivander's on his way there when a huge gust of wind finally made the decision for him, practically pushing him toward the door.
Harry took a deep breath and entered the wand shop. What he saw made him stop dead in his tracks.
Draco Malfoy was hunched over Ollivander's workbench, speaking low incantations and waving his wand with delicate motions. There was something glowing on the bench next to a piece of wand wood. Harry could feel the magic swirling around him and filling the shop. He stood in stunned silence as Draco united the wand core with the wood. When the magic died down, the wand continued to glow for a moment before fading. Malfoy wiped his forehead with his sleeve then picked up the wand to inspect his work.
"Malfoy." Harry meant to call out, but his breath caught in his throat and it came out more like a gasp.
Draco spun around and stared at Harry. His face looked tired for a split second before his expression hardened.
"Potter," Draco said coldly.
"I'm sorry, I-"
"-came here to disturb me while I'm trying to do my work. Yes, I see that."
"No, I'm just sitting here at his workbench making wandsfor my health."
"Where's Ollivander?" Harry demanded.
"He only comes in a couple times a week anymore. He doesn't keep to a schedule."
"Well, I need to speak with him. I'll leave a note for him, unless you'll notify me when he comes in next?"
"Is this a personal matter, then? I never would have figured you'd go for the nonagenarians."
"No," Harry hissed through gritted teeth. "It's a matter of delicacy. Auror business."
"You're not in your Auror robes, Potter."
"That doesn't mean anything."
"You're carrying a bag from Flourish and Blotts. Do you get to shop on the clock, too? If so, you might want to try Madame Malkin's. Your cloak is dreadfully out of style."
About ten retorts popped into Harry's head. It was just like they were back at Hogwarts, except this time Harry bit them back and clenched his fists at his sides.
"I just have a question about wands that I think he could answer."
Draco relaxed perceptibly when he realized Harry couldn't be baited. "I realize you think I'm evil or some such nonsense, but if you have a question about a wand, I am qualified to answer it for you."
"I don't think you're evil, Malfoy. I wouldn't have testified for you if I did."
Harry regretted saying it the moment the words came out, but somehow Malfoy had always been able to crawl under his skin and bring out the worst in him.
"Yes, well, thank you for that," Malfoy said, his eyes trained on the workbench.
"I got your note," Harry replied softly.
There was a moment of awkward silence, as if neither quite knew how to lead the conversation away from uncomfortable topics.
"So," Harry finally said after clearing his throat. "I suppose it wouldn't hurt to ask you, then. Ollivander wouldn't have selected you to take over if you didn't know what you were doing."
Draco raised his head again, his expression back to full-fledged haughtiness.
"Is it possible for a wand to turn on its master?"
Draco looked thoughtful for a minute before looking at Harry with a wry smile.
"With the right curse, yes. But you're the big bad Auror, surely you know that."
Harry refrained from pulling a face. He wouldn't stoop to Draco's level. "So, other than a curse, there's no way?"
"If you're trying to get me to reveal any dark secrets of my father's former acquaintances, I don't have anything for you."
"That's not what I was implying at all, Malfoy," Harry said quickly. "I think there's something wrong with my wand."
Draco stilled. His eyes widened and genuine interest crossed his face.
"What are the symptoms?"
"This stays between us?"
"Who am I going to tell, Potter? You're the Chosen One and I'm the reformed Death Eater. I don't hold a lot of clout."
"Self-deprecation doesn't become you, Malfoy."
Malfoy barked out a laugh.
"All right, all right, what's wrong with it?"
"It's casting spells on its own."
"But it's true. They come from my wand, but they aren't my spells."
"I can't help you, Potter."
"But you just insisted you were a qualified wandmaker!"
"The wand chooses its master, Potter. That wand chose you, and it's not because you look dashing holding it, it's because it is the best tool to harness and wield your magic. If something isn't working it's a problem with your magic, not the wand. How did you ever manage to pass your NEWTs without reading Quintessence: A Quest?"
"And the wand can't possibly make a wrong choice?" Harry asked, ignoring Malfoy's incredulity.
"It's the right wand for you. I- I made it myself. It can only be wielded by you."
Something crackled in the air between them, and Harry's whole body suddenly flushed with warmth. Draco's eyes were wide and unguarded, his pale skin also turning pink.
Whatever had flared up between them was quashed when the front door swung open and a little girl darted in, followed closely by her father.
"Sweetheart, calm down," the man said to her gently. "You can't just rush into shops like an erumpent."
"But I've never bought mummy a Christmas present with my own money before!"
The man patted her head softly. "And she'll be so excited when you give it to her."
When the man finally surveyed the shop, he looked startled, either from seeing Draco Malfoy at the workbench or Harry Potter standing beside him. He stood frozen in place. Harry recognized him as one of the watchwizards who worked for the Ministry.
The little girl, however, shrieked, "It's Harry Potter!" and rushed over to Harry, stopping about a foot away from him with wide eyes.
"Are you really Harry Potter?" she whispered.
Harry knelt down and stuck out his hand. "Yes, I am Harry Potter. What's your name?"
"Beatrice," she said shyly.
"Well, Beatrice, it's a pleasure to meet you." He gestured to his hand and she reached out and shook it. "You look a little too young to be starting Hogwarts. Are you buying your mum a wand?"
"No, silly," she said, no longer awestruck. "I'm buying her a wand holder!"
"That's a lovely gift."
Beatrice's father finally came over, placing a hand on his daughter's shoulder.
"She came up with the idea all on her own. Didn't you, Beatrice?"
"I saved up money from doing chores all summer!"
"I'm sure your mum will be thrilled."
"Yes, well, sorry to bother you Auror Potter," Beatrice's father spoke. "We didn't mean to interrupt you. Do you know if Ollivander is in?"
"Garrick is partially retired," Draco broke in calmly. "I'll be taking over the business from him when he does."
"Yes, Mr. Malfoy was just giving me some very helpful information about wand theory," Harry said, seeing hesitation on the man's face. "I'm sure he will help you pick out the perfect wand holder for your mum, Beatrice."
Malfoy didn't turn to Harry. He looked at Beatrice instead and said, "Now, Miss Beatrice, do you know your mum's favorite color? I know mine is partial to purple."
The skepticism washed away from the man's face, and Harry took that as his cue to leave.
"Well, I must be going now. Thank you for your help, Malfoy. It was a pleasure meeting you, Beatrice." She gave him a distracted wave as she and Malfoy pawed through a display of wand holders.
The girl's father gave Harry a nod. "Happy Holidays, Auror Potter."
"Same to you, Mr. Munch."
Munch beamed back, and Harry was grateful the name had finally come to him.
Harry turned and left the shop. The air had grown chillier, so he wrapped his cloak tightly around him and decided to call it a day. He didn't mind being regarded as a celebrity so much anymore, especially when children came up to him. The Daily Prophetstill considered it front page news when he cracked a high profile case, but generally his life was so mundane, there just wasn't much they could do other than fabricate stories, and the public had got better at knowing what to believe.
Of course, there were still some problems whenever Harry went out on one of Hermione's ill-chosen blind dates. After a story about a decidedly awkward sexual encounter with some bloke ended up on the pages of Witch Weekly, Harry started meeting his dates in Muggle London with non-disclosure agreements in hand. It wasn't worth dragging his virtually non-existent personal life into the paper. If he ever met someone he felt comfortable with to last more than two dates, he would consider a different course of action.
Harry spent the rest of the night curled up with a pot of tea and a novel he had been trying to finish for weeks, but his mind kept wandering to what Malfoy had said. He only confirmed what Harry had already thought, but it still didn't make it any easier to hear. If it had been the wand it would have been an easy fix. Instead, Harry had a much more personal problem on his hands, and he wasn't sure he could fix it.
He turned instead to thinking about Malfoy working at Ollivander's. The only thing he could figure was that Malfoy had somehow become friendly with the wandmaker while he was imprisoned in Malfoy Manor. He could somehow picture Malfoy sneaking down to the dungeons and talking to the old man. Harry had seen hints of Draco's compassion over the years since the war. Even during their time at Hogwarts, Dumbledore had never doubted his intrinsic goodness. It wasn't that Harry had been keeping track of Draco exactly, but he knew a sizable donation had been made to St. Mungo's for their new children's floor. In sharp contrast to Lucius's donation years prior, Draco had managed to keep the donation publicly anonymous. Harry also suspected the scholarship set up at Hogwarts for war orphans had something to do with Malfoy, but McGonagall was much less willing to spill secrets to Harry Potter than the hospital director had been.
Regardless, it was clear he had established a relationship with Ollivander and the old wizard deemed
him competent enough to take over his business.
Harry was so curious, he almost flooed Luna to ask her if she saw anything to confirm his suspicions while she was in the dungeons. The only thing that really stopped him was that he knew Luna was in Sweden trying to track down the Crumple-Horned Snorkack.
Eventually, Harry gave up on his book and went to bed early, but his sleep was filled with fitful dreams he couldn't quite remember when he awoke. The only thing he knew for certain was that they had something to do with Draco Malfoy.
And he didn't know exactly how he felt about that.
For the rest of the week, Harry tried to compensate for his errant wand by letting Ron or one of the other Aurors take over during arrests, claiming that he would provide back up if needed. It wasn't Harry's usual style at all, but it was only Ron who gave Harry quizzical looks.
Harry tried to pawn it off on Roberts.
"The boss told me I needed to work on my cooperative skills. Apparently I rush into situations too quickly and expect to take on all the burden."
The words came easily out of Harry's mouth, and when Ron just nodded stiffly, Harry realized that his on the fly excuse was actually spot on. He'd always had a hard time asking for help, and when he asked for it, he usually didn't get the help he wanted. Add that to the guilt he felt for all the lives lost during the war with Voldemort, and he felt obligated to go into dangerous situations first. Ron and Hermione were expecting their first child, it only made sense to Harry to go into raids and arrests first.
It was really hard for Harry to stand back, but his wand was getting more and more out of control as each day passed. Even Kreacher was starting to scold him for it, especially after a hair-growing hex rebounded and Kreacher ended up with a beard down to his feet. He got rid of it with a snap of his fingers, but the glare he shot Harry was chilling.
Harry knew he had to do something, the problem was he didn't know what. He thought about what Draco said, that the problem was with him, and it had sounded an awful lot like Draco was telling him he needed a mind-healer. Harry knew he was going to have to ask Hermione about it, but he managed to push it out of his mind instead.
On Saturday morning, Harry found himself being dragged out of his house by Ron with some mumbled explanation about Hermione and her pregnancy.
He was still half asleep when he realized that Ron was dragging him to Fortescue's at 9 o'clock in the morning.
"Wait. Hermione said she wanted what?" Harry finally found his voice.
"She said she wanted pistachio ice cream with pickles, and under no uncertain terms was I to come home without it."
"I thought all those strange pregnancy cravings women got were a myth."
"She has you under the thumb."
"Yeah, well," Ron sputtered. "Wait till this happens to you!"
Harry didn't respond to Ron's retort right away. More and more he was starting to think he really preferred men over women. It wasn't that he didn't find women attractive, he just couldn't imagine himself spending his life with one anymore.
"You know blokes can't get pregnant, right?" he finally replied.
"So Hermione was right. Again. You going to start seeing men exclusively then?"
"I think so. It just, I don't know, it feels more right to me. Though, it's been awhile since I dated anyone. Maybe I just need to find a bloke to get off with."
"Too much information, mate."
"Right," Harry said with a grin. "You do know Fortescue's doesn't open for another two hours."
"Bloody hell. 'Mione's going to be vexed."
"This isn't your fault, though."
"You can floo her from George's shop. Then we can check out the new brooms they just got at Quality Quidditch."
"Gin was telling me about them the other night! Apparently they brake like a dream."
As it turned out, Hermione's craving had shifted instead to wanting a butterscotch sundae with maple ice cream. So, after Ron and Harry helped George unload and set up some of his Christmas displays, and then ogled the new brooms for longer than was probably necessary, they headed to Fortescue's. Fortescue's had been one of the last businesses to reopen after the war. Florean was thought to be the end of the line, but in his will he left everything to a distant cousin. Eventually, she decided to reopen the shop in her cousin's honour.
The store was empty when they walked in, which wasn't surprising for an ice cream parlour in December. Ron went up to ring the bell that was sitting on the counter while Harry hung back and looked at the display board of holiday flavors. Cranberry sauce he understood. Even eggnog made sense, but he balked when he saw they had a chipolata flavor.
Finally, a young woman came out of the back room. Even though Ron had rung the bell, she looked startled to see two men standing in her shop.
"Oh! How can I help you?"
Harry wandered up to the counter, holding his wand absently in his hand, while Ron explained that he needed a butterscotch sundae with maple ice cream for his crazy, pregnant wife. As soon as Harry reached Ron's side, a rope shot out of his wand and started wrapping around the ice cream scoop the woman had been reaching for and pulling it toward him.
Harry was completely mortified as the scoop shot into his hand.
"I'm so sorry!" he gasped.
The woman looked so startled she could only gape, though Harry was certain part of the gaping had to do with the fact that she just realized Harry Potter was standing in the shop.
Harry chuckled, hoping it would help calm her down. "I've been trying to hone my non-verbal spells, and apparently my wand thought I meant Incarcerous when I meant Levicorpus."
He handed the scoop back to the woman as Ron looked at him questioningly.
"It's not the wand's fault," a voice called from behind Harry.
He and Ron both spun around. There stood Malfoy. Harry's breath hitched in his throat involuntarily. Draco was leaning against a table, trademark smirk on his face. It was the first time in Harry's memory he had ever seen Draco wearing something other than wizarding robes. He looked remarkably good in slim trousers and a fitted jumper. Heat flooded Harry's cheeks when he suddenly remembered one of the dreams he'd had about Malfoy involved stripping the blond out of a very similar outfit.
"Thanks, Malfoy," Harry said drily after he found his voice.
The young woman behind the counter finally regained her composure and started asking Ron what he wanted on the sundae. Ron raised an eyebrow at Harry before turning back to the task.
Harry wandered over to Draco.
"I didn't know you had such a sweet tooth, Potter."
"Hermione had a craving, and for some reason Ron decided that if he should suffer, I should too."
Malfoy raised an eyebrow. "I always wondered about the three of you. So inseparable..."
"Oi! Malfoy! It's not like that." Harry rolled his eyes. Harry had heard all the suspicions in various wizarding rags over the years, especially after it became public knowledge that he and Ginny had split.
"I see you haven't sought any help for your problem, Potter."
"I've been thinking about it," Harry said defensively.
"Don't hurt yourself with that."
"That's the best you could come up with? Not your best insult, Malfoy."
"It's early yet, Potter."
They stood smirking at each other, arms crossed, until Ron stepped in.
"Malfoy," he said with a curt nod. "Ready to go, Harry?"
"Yes. Don't want to stand in the way of Malfoy and his chocolate fix."
For a brief moment Malfoy looked surprised that Harry knew about his sweet tooth, but Harry hadn't watched Malfoy for all of sixth year without learning a few things about him. Malfoy ate chocolate at almost every meal, even breakfast.
Malfoy schooled his features quickly. "Well, do think about what I said, Potter. You really are going to hurt someone eventually."
"Don't you think I know that?" The words flew out of Harry's mouth before he could stop them.
Draco simply raised an eyebrow in a manner that said, So why don't you get help then?
Ron looked confused as Harry grabbed his elbow and started dragging him out of the shop. Harry could feel Draco's eyes on them as they left, but when he looked over his shoulder, Draco was at the counter ordering his ice cream.
"What was that all about, mate?"
"You really need to do something about it. Maybe Ollivander-"
"It's not the wand!" Harry snapped.
"Malfoy knows what he's doing. Apparently he's good at something. He told me that the problem wasn't with the wand, and I believe him."
"So what is wrong then? Have you been cursed? I'll take you to St. Mungo's."
"No!" Harry finally shouted to interrupt Ron. "I haven't been cursed. I went through every curse detection spell I know."
Ron looked like he wanted to say something but bit his lip.
"I'm sorry I snapped at you. I'm just on edge because I don't know what's happening."
Ron studied Harry for a moment, as if trying to solve a puzzle, before finally replying, "We should
really ask Hermione."
"Come on, you know if anyone can find out what's wrong it's 'Mione."
"I know. I just know this is going to end in a scolding."
Sure enough, as soon as the story was out of his mouth later that afternoon, after Hermione had inhaled her ice cream sundae, Harry was at the receiving end of one of the smacks to the back of the head usually reserved for Ron.
"Why didn't you tell me this sooner?"
"Well, I didn't think it was anything to be alarmed about at first."
"Your wand misfires and you aren't alarmed? Harry! Didn't you learn anything from Quintessence: A Quest? How on earth did you pass Charms?"
"That's exactly what Malfoy said," Harry said with a groan.
Hermione looked taken aback. "Well, he's right!"
"I know, I know."
"What else did Malfoy say?"
"Well, he said that he had never heard of a case of a wand turning on its owner," Harry started. Then he added sheepishly, "He also said the wand isn't the problem. That the problem is with me."
"Malfoy would say that to you," Ron barked.
"Yeah, but this time I think he's right. He really seems to like making wands, and I think he's good at it. I don't think he would lie about this."
Harry kept it to himself that Malfoy made his wand. For some reason it felt like it was something Draco told him privately.
Hermione looked thoughtful for a minute, studying Harry carefully, as if she somehow knew that Harry was having confused feelings where Draco Malfoy was concerned.
"Well, I'll look into it Harry. Surely you aren't the first wizard this has happened to."
"Why can't I ever just be normal?" Harry muttered.
Luckily Mrs. Weasley's voice came calling from the floo, effectively ending the conversation, though Harry had a feeling that Hermione had a lot more to say on the matter.
After the encounter in Fortescue's, the trouble with Harry's wand increased – both in frequency and intensity. Harry knew Malfoy had nothing to do with it, but it was comforting somehow to blame it on him.
Luckily, most of the wand mishaps happened at home. One evening he spontaneously Apparated himself into the middle of Hyde Park. Other than the homeless Muggle who was completely startled by Harry's sudden appearance on his park bench, no harm was done that couldn't be fixed with a quick Obliviate.
But then, during a routine arrest of a shoplifter, Harry set some of the contraband on fire. Later that day when he was following up a tip with a prisoner in Azkaban, he accidentally lassoed an elderly woman who happened to be visiting her grandson. Of course, she was the son was a former Death Eater and instead of accepting Harry's profuse apologies, the woman filed a complaint with the Ministry for discrimination.
That one he couldn't explain, so he finally had to tell Roberts. Of course, he told him that something was wrong with his wand instead of the full story. But that was enough for Roberts to assign him to desk duty until he got the problem sorted.
"I can't have Harry Potter acting as a representative of my department while accidentally tying up little old ladies!" he had bellowed.
"I'm working on it," Harry insisted.
"Have you seen Ollivander about this?"
Harry had to refrain from rolling his eyes, but he added to the lie and promised Roberts that Ollivander was looking into it as they spoke. Although that seemed to pacify Roberts, it didn't get Harry off desk duty.
For a few days, even Ron tiptoed around him in the office. Harry had never liked paperwork to begin with, and to be stuck filing cold cases and filling out reports on petty theft crimes that other Aurors had neglected put Harry in a right state. Of course, the other reason Ron was cautious was because a few errant stinging hexes had managed to be directed his way, and he wasn't fully convinced they were all accidental.
By the fourth day, Harry decided to make the best of it. It helped when he realized he was finally caught up on the paperwork Roberts had foisted on him. So, he decided to treat himself to a long lunch.
There was a little cafe not far from the Ministry run by the oldest witch Harry had ever met. Rumor had it she was nearing 200, and she made the best corned beef in all of England. The cafe was half Muggle, but all you had to do was flash your wand at the hostess and she'd take you the wizarding side that was hidden from Muggles with a disillusionment charm.
Harry managed to make it into the cafe and to a table without his wand misfiring, although he was kind of hoping a Silencio would hit the speakers that were blasting Celestina Warbeck's new Yuletide album. He placed his order and was entertaining himself with the personal ads in The Quibblerwhen a familiar voice spoke behind him.
"How's the wand?"
"Sod off, Malfoy," Harry said without turning around.
"It's my line of work, Potter. I can't help my curiosity."
"You told me yourself there wasn't anything wrong with my wand."
"Ah," Draco replied, walking around Harry to lean on the chair across from him. "So he can listen."
"I think you're just asking so you can admire your handiwork."
Harry reached for his wand from inside his coat in order to make his point, but as soon as it was free, it jerked in his hand. Some force pulled the chair Draco was leaning on out and then shoved him into it. Harry tried to wrangle the wand back into his coat, but before he could do it a rope shot out and wrapped around Malfoy's ankles, tying him to the legs of the chair.
Both men stared at each other with their mouths gaping open until Draco finally managed to gather his wits.
"Why Potter, you could have just asked me to stay and dine with you. Are you that starved for company?"
"Well, since I've been put on desk duty, it has been rather lonely in the office," Harry said with a shrug before he cast a Finite on the rope.
Draco was about to retort, when he saw the corner of Harry's lips twitch, and then both men burst out laughing at the absurdity.
The waitress came over then, clearly confused seeing Draco Malfoy and Harry Potter sitting together laughing.
"I'll have the special, with tea," Draco said before she could ask.
It was only after Harry nodded at her that she said, "Yes, sir," and scampered off.
"Does that happen a lot?" Harry asked.
"Me getting tied to chairs? Probably more often than you would think."
Harry couldn't stop himself from blushing at the suggestion in Draco's voice.
"I meant, well, the way people treat you."
"Oh, that. It's got better. Your endorsement seems to help. You think your department would let you work as a security guard at the shop?"
"So long as I don't have to do any paperwork, I'll be there this afternoon," Harry said with a laugh. "Though it might be bad for business to have a security guard who can't seem to manage his own wand."
"If I tell you to get help again, are you going to stalk off in a childish huff?"
"Not that it matters to you, Potter, but even I swallowed my pride and saw a mind-healer after the war."
Harry saw Draco tense slightly, as if waiting for him to react. He wondered if Draco had always been so jumpy. He masked it well, but Harry could see fear flickering in his eyes. Was Draco actually afraid of Harry? Or was it just the wand?
"I did too," Harry finally said. If Draco was actually going to talk to him civilly, he figured he could do the same.
"Everyone was grieving, and I didn't want to put any more burden on them. I needed someone to talk to. It was my only option."
"Wasn't expecting that?"
"I never quite know what to expect from you, Potter."
"Because I'm so mysterious."
"Because you're like an Antipodean Opaleye in an apothecary."
Harry rolled his eyes and changed the subject. "So, why wandmaking?"
"Why are you interested?"
"I'm not," Harry said, although in truth he was fascinated by it. "I just never pictured you making wands for a living is all. Figured you'd do something financial."
"You and my father both," Draco mused.
Luckily Draco's tea arrived at that moment or Harry knew he would have said something insulting about Lucius. He didn't know what Malfoy's relationship with his father was like, but he didn't want to push their fragile amicability too far.
Draco doctored his tea with milk and sugar while Harry tried to think of a way to steer the conversation.
Draco spoke suddenly, "Garrick would have died in there without me. As soon as the Dark L- Voldemort found out about the Elder Wand, he didn't have any use for Ollivander. But, I suppose he didn't kill him because Ollivander is pureblood and wasn't a Dumbledore sympathizer. So he just left him there. I did what I could when I could get away from my other tasks."
Harry had an idea what those other tasks were, and he pretended not to notice Draco shudder.
"So you talked about wands, then?" Harry prompted.
"Unlike you, I've always been interested in charms and magical theory. Garrick's own son wasn't interested in wandmaking, and he had been looking for someone to take over his business for years."
"You seem to enjoy the work."
"I do. So long as people continue to put their prejudices aside, I hope Ollivander's can continue to flourish. Can I ask you a question, Potter?"
"Yes," Harry replied cautiously.
"Why in Merlin's name are you reading the personals section of The Quibbler? You're the wizarding world's most eligible bachelor."
"It's not as easy for me as you might think." He waved off Malfoy's questioning expression. "There are certain expectations that come along with being Harry Potter. I'm sure you can understand that. But, have you never read these? They're terribly amusing."
"I tend to stay away from printed media."
"Look at this." Harry pushed the paper toward Draco.
Draco read it out loud. "Trying to reconnect. We met at The Vespertine Snitch. I was the charming witch in the red dress. You were the creep who pinched my bottom. I told you if you did that again, I'd hex you. You did. I need your address now."
Draco burst out laughing. It was the second time Harry had heard Draco laugh that afternoon, and he decided he wouldn't mind hearing it a lot more often.
The two men continued to mock the personal ads while they finished their lunches. The best find was an ad from a "Mature Registered Animagus" who described himself as "70% recluse/30% amazing dancer."
"I wonder if that's the creepy bottom-pincher from the night club," Harry suggested, causing Draco to nearly choke on his tea.
As they were exiting the cafe, Draco stopped Harry before they parted.
"Potter, I'm going to try this one more time. We've had a pleasant lunch, wouldn't you agree?"
"We did manage not to hex each other."
"Will you let me give you one little piece of advice, then?"
"I don't need a mind-healer, Malfoy."
"Fair enough. I'm telling you this as a wand-maker. Your wand wants to be controlled. That's what it's for."
"So there is something wrong with-"
"I assure you not. But it is true that the relationship the wizard has to his wand is imperative."
Even if Malfoy was right, it still didn't give Harry the faintest clue as to what to do, but a different question slipped out of his mouth.
"Why do you care?"
Draco smirked. "Because if we keep meeting like this, one of these days you're going to set my hair on fire."
For the next week, Harry thought about what Draco had said, but it still didn't quite make sense to him. It was weird to think about having a relationship with his wand. He liked his wand. It chose him, after all. He supposed it had started feeling a little different to him, but that was because he didn't quite trust it. Maybe that's what Malfoy meant.
All his attempts to trust his wand seemed to fail, though. In fact, it seemed to misfire so much that he stopped using it as much as he could. He cooked without magic. He even tried to do laundry at a Muggle launderette.
The only bright side of the week was that Harry seemed to run into Malfoy everywhere. Other than an accidental Mobilicorpusin the middle of Diagon Alley, his wand seemed to behave itself around him, but Harry's body seemed not to. Harry finally had to admit to himself that maybe he was just a little bit attracted to Draco Malfoy. After another two lunches and an eggnog ice cream at Fortescue's, Harry also had to admit that he actually kind of liked him too.
It was completely mad, of course, but Draco was interesting and witty, particularly when his wit wasn't directed at Harry's expense. Harry admired the way Draco was making a name for himself all on his own, and he just felt a spark of excitement around him that he hadn't felt around someone in a long time.
It was on Friday when everything came to a head. Harry had been having a particularly difficult morning. He was just trying to submit a fairly routine evidence release request to the Unspeakables, but there was so much red tape and so many security clearances that after three hours, Harry found himself back where he started.
He was still fuming when Hermione burst into the office.
"Do you have good news for me, 'Mione?"
"There's good news and bad news."
"Give me the bad news first."
"Are you sure you don't want the good news?"
"Fine. I've done some research, and it turns out there have been a few cases of this happening before. The last recorded case was actually in 1845, to Cygnus Black, and what Malfoy told you is correct. It's not the wand."
Harry rolled his eyes. Of course Hermione had double checked.
"What made Ollivander's technique so revolutionary was that he knew the magical properties both the wand's core and the wand's wood would need to work together to truly channel the magical power of the wizard. The reason why your core is phoenix feather is because it is the only core strong enough to take your natural magical power. So when you were using Malfoy's wand, you got used to channeling your power through unicorn hair, which couldn't handle the flow of power you're capable of, and that made your magic restless."
"I'm sure Ron will love to hear this," Harry broke in.
"He knows he isn't as powerful as you Harry. There's no one more powerful than you, that's why the effect this is having on you is so great."
"Malfoy told me that my wand wanted me to take control of it."
"Well, in a way, he's right. What's happening is that your magic is channeling itself through the wand because you aren't giving it enough of an outlet."
"What do you mean?"
"Your magic is just like your body and your mind, which need to be exercised enough so they don't get out of shape. You're not using enough of your magic and it's getting restless."
"But I use magic all the time!"
"Oh, Harry, I've been watching it happen for years. You've been getting complacent."
"You really haven't noticed?"
Harry shook his head, still trying to process Hermione's accusation.
"It was all right in Auror training, because you were learning so many new spells and running practice drills, and even for the first year or so of working here because there were still Death Eaters to track down and you were traveling a lot. But it's become routine for you; you're not being challenged anymore."
"How have you seen all of this and I haven't?"
"Because I'm observant and logical, and for the first time since you knew you were a wizard you aren't chasing down evil and you think you should be content with that."
She was right, of course. Harry did feel like he had become useless. He wanted to feel grateful for being part of a competent Auror team, but it just wasn't as fulfilling as he expected it to be.
"I shouldbe content with it."
"But you aren't and that doesn't mean you should feel guilty about it. It's not your fault. Your magic just isn't being used to its full potential."
"That's why it's got so much worse since I was put on desk duty."
"That's very likely."
"So what am I supposed to do?"
"Well, that's the good news. The solution is fairly simple. You just have to use your magic more."
"But every time I go to use it in the field my wand misfires! And I'm probably going to burn Grimmauld Place down if I keep using it around the house."
"Obviously it's more than just the everyday ways you use magic. That's what got you into this problem in the first place. You need to find some kind of outlet for it."
"You're telling me to get a hobby?"
"If it uses a lot of magic, then yes."
Harry let out an exasperated sigh. "'Mione, I have to say, as much as I appreciate your research, this is probably the least helpful advice you've ever given me. What can I do that uses a lot of magic? Apparate to Scotland every weekend?"
"I suppose that might work, but you hate Apparating."
"And you're sure this is what I need to do?"
"You'll think of something, Harry," Hermione said with a smile and a gentle pat on his knee. "You'll be at Ginny's match this weekend?"
"Yes, I'll see you there."
Harry sat at his desk with his head swimming with everything Hermione and Draco had told him about his wand and his magic. One the one hand, it was kind of comforting to know that it was his magic that seemed to be the source of the problem and not his mind. On the other hand, his magic was part of who he was. If his magic was sluggish and neglected, then the only person to blame for it was himself. He thought he wanted to live a calm, quiet life in a world that was safe, but it really just felt like everything was spinning out of his control.
He grabbed his cloak, thinking he would go get some fresh air, but he soon found himself in Diagon Alley. It was busier than normal with Christmas so close. Usually Harry got caught up in the spirit of the holidays, but not even the cheerful décor and bustle of shoppers could distract him from his mood.
He trudged into Ollivander's with his head hanging down.
"I feel like I've lost control of everything in my life," he announced upon entry.
"Cry me a river, Potter."
Harry took Draco's sarcasm as an invitation to sit down.
"I spoke to Hermione earlier today."
"And what did the know-it-all have to say?"
"She said that my magic is basically out of shape, restless because I haven't been using enough of it. It's trying to force its way through my wand, which is basically what you said. She suggested I take up a hobby."
"A hobby, Potter? Like knitting socks for house elves?"
Harry shot Draco a glare. "Something that will let me channel and release my magic. Apparently work and my day-to-day usage just aren't enough."
"Well, you are very powerful," Draco said with an uncharacteristic squeak.
Harry let out a heavy sigh. "Everyone tells me I have all this power, but I still don't really understand. How could I not have control over my magic or my wand? It's like being the Chosen One all over again. Do I ever get to have any say in what happens to me?"
"Potter, your teenage angst is-"
"I'm being serious, Malfoy."
Malfoy put down his tools and turned toward him, looking so intense that Harry felt uncomfortable.
"I told you, the wand wants you to really take command of it."
"How can the wand wantanything? Hermione told me it's just an instrument of my magic."
"There's a special bond between wand and master, Potter. That's what I keep trying to tell you. The wand is an instrument of your magic, specifically chosen to work with your magic. It's an extension of you. It wants what your magic wants, to be tamed and used."
"Well, how am I supposed to know exactly what it wants?"
"What do youwant?"
"I don't know."
"I think you do."
Draco had inched closer and closer as he spoke, until he was standing in Harry's personal space. The scent of wood shavings and the crackle of magic in the air overtook Harry's senses.
Harry closed his eyes and thought about what he wanted. All the times he'd run into Draco the past two weeks, the way their childish antagonizing had given way to playful banter, the way Draco was up front with him but encouraged without pushing, Harry realized he felt truly alive in Draco's presence. It was as if his magic was pulling him to where Draco would be.
Suddenly it became clear. The only thing he really wanted was Malfoy. His magic thrummed in agreement.
His eyes snapped open. Harry gripped the wand firmly in his hand and thin silver ropes shot out of it, only this time he did it on purpose. They wrapped around Draco's wrists and then yanked his arms behind his back, holding them in place.
Harry couldn't help himself. Draco looked gorgeous and helpless with his arms bound. He took a step forward and spun Draco around. Then he pressed himself up against Draco's back rubbing his cock against Draco's arse.
"Potter," Draco whimpered.
"Malfoy, I don't-" He was cut off by Draco pushing his hips back.
Harry felt charged with power. He hadn't felt this way since he was chasing after Rabastan Lestrange, the last of the renegade Death Eaters. Harry and his team had tracked him all the way to Algeria but Harry had been the one to take him down.
It was the last time he could remember feeling so in tune with his magic.
Now his magic was telling him use it for something different entirely.
"You want this, too?" Harry murmured in Draco's ear. He needed confirmation.
With another flick of his wand, Draco's trousers and pants were down around his ankles, and Harry was forcing Draco to spread his feet as far they could go. An unraveling charm made quick work of Draco's dress shirt, leaving it in a tattered pile on the floor.
"That was Italian silk!"
Harry rolled his eyes, but waved his wand again and the shirt started repairing itself.
"Good," Harry said as he pushed Draco forward until he was bent over his workbench. Then he whispered an Obscuro, covering Malfoy's vision.
"The door," Draco gasped.
Harry cast a quick Colloportus and a Muffilato, adding a Protegoover the store displays, just in case. With all the protection spells, it felt like he was doing something dangerous. His magic coursed through him, and a thrill went up his spine.
Harry cast a localized Mobilicorpus, lifting Draco's head from where he was resting his cheek on his workbench. The motion made his back arch in a thoroughly inviting curve.
"It's not just the wand, is it? You want me to take control, too, don't you?"
Draco didn't respond right away, but he was trembling with desire.
Harry cast a Locomotorand the wand that had been on the workbench rose into the air, spinning around behind Draco's body, winding back and then slapping across Draco's bare arse cheeks. A pink stripe bloomed across them, matching the fire spreading across Harry's face. Not that there was much blood left, because all the rest had gone straight down to his rapidly filling cock.
Harry was mesmerized. His eyes widened as he watched Malfoy's hips started to move, as if seeking friction for his cock. Harry flicked his wrist, making the wand strike Draco's pale flesh again, adding a second stripe to the first.
"You like it when people tell you what to do, don't you, Malfoy?"
Draco shook his head vehemently.
"You do. You've always liked a big, strong man in your life telling you what to do." The truth of Harry's statement was actually dead on and both men knew it, but Draco shook his head anyway. Of course, the situation spoke much louder than Draco's refusal. He was tied up with his arse being punished and was rutting shamelessly against the rough surface of the work bench.
Harry cast Incarcerousagain, making another thin silver rope appear and then wrap around the base of Draco's erection, slowing the flow of blood to it. Harry heard a small whimper escape Draco's mouth.
"You rebelled and became a wandmaker and now there's no one to order you around. Even Ollivander is retiring. And you miss it. Admit it."
He waved his wand again, transfiguring the floating wand into a wooden paddle. He used another Locomotorto splay the paddle across Malfoy's now rosy pink cheeks.
"Yes! Potter!" Draco cried out hoarsely.
Harry struck with the paddle again and again, controlling the speed and force of each hit with directed bursts of magic. The feeling of magic flowing through him seemed to heighten his arousal. It was as if every wave of his wand made him more aware of his body and honed his senses.
Malfoy's arse was bright red, and the whines coming out of his mouth were growing higher pitched and less coherent. His hair was damp and sticking to the back of his neck. Beads of sweat rolled down his back until they found their end in the crack between Draco's cheeks. Harry was torn between wanting
to trace them with his tongue or just letting them slick Draco's hole so Harry could push right in.
"Potter, please," Draco panted, and Harry's decision was made.
Harry flicked his wand again, this time at his own fingers until they were covered in a clear oil. He took a step forward and cast an Episkey, first heating but then soothing the redness a little, before pressing his index finger into Malfoy's sweat-slicked hole.
"Have you- have you ever done this before?" Draco gasped.
"What do you think, Malfoy?" Harry retorted, just before he twisted his fingers, rubbing them against Draco's prostate.
Draco's responding groan made Harry whimper in return.
He quickly added a second finger, but was careful not to touch the bundle of nerves again. He wanted to make Malfoy beg for it.
Meanwhile, he cast a modified Geminioat his own hand, making a duplicate which he wrapped around Draco's cock. He set it at a teasing pace, until he could feel Draco's entire body shaking around the fingers still pushing in and out of his hole.
"Please, please, Potter."
"Please what, Malfoy?"
He made the hand around Draco's dick speed up, but tightened the thin rope around it a little, making Draco whine with need.
"F- fuck me. Make me come."
"Why didn't you say so sooner?" Harry said as lightly as he could. His own trousers and pants fell away with a quick flick of his wand, and he gave Draco no warning before replacing his fingers with his cock.
They moaned in tandem as Harry pushed all the way in until he was flush with Malfoy's bottom.
He knew he wasn't going to last long. He snapped his hips, thrusting in and out of Malfoy while he his magic held onto the bindings around Draco's wrist and cock and his duplicated hand pumped faster and faster.
The air started to crackle around them and Harry's magic swelled inside him. Sex had never felt even close to this before. It was a physical pleasure amplified so much by magic, Harry felt an exhilaration that only compared to flying. He felt powerful, and he swore he could feel Draco's magic responding to his, intertwining with his, each time Draco clenched his ass around Harry's cock.
He could feel Malfoy's climax approaching, building and building, until Harry knew the exact moment it would hit. He released the binding around Draco's dick and gave it a hard tug. Draco's ass spasmed with his orgasm just as Harry's hit.
A powerful surge of magic coursed through his body. Harry was so attuned to it that a slight gesture with his wand filled the room with an intense, warm light as he gripped tightly onto Draco's
hip. He lost all sense of time as he came, his cock pulsing and pulsing until he was spent.
When he came to his senses, all of the lamps in the shop were blazing with red flames that Harry vaguely remembered putting there.
He cast a quick Finite, fixing the lamps and releasing Malfoy's arms. Then he slipped out of Malfoy, dropped his wand, and leaned on the work bench beside him, panting. Harry felt breathless and sated,
but in a completely different way than he was used to after sex. Other than his wand and a series of rhythmic thrusts, he'd barely moved, yet he had expelled so much of his pent-up magic that he felt utterly exhausted and oddly at peace.
He looked over at Draco who was still bent over and looked thoroughly fucked to the point of bewilderment.
"Fuck, Potter. What just happened?"
Harry was flushed and was feeling dozy after the spectacular orgasm, but he reached down and picked up his wand. It felt sturdier than it had in months, and he knew he had just found the hobby Hermione had encouraged. Though, he didn't know how he was going to tell her that kinky sex with Draco Malfoy seemed to keep his magic satisfied.
"I- I don't really know. I guess the wand really wanted me to shag you."
"How many times do I have to tell you, Potter? It's the wizard, not the wand."