Disclaimer: Harry Potter is owned by J.K. Rowling and Warner Brothers. No copyright infringement intended.
Summary: Harry couldn't stop staring. It wasn't his fault Malfoy looked so odd in glasses. It also wasn't his fault that he was so attractive, either.
Author's Notes: This fic made me laugh the entire time I was writing it. Just a one-shot with some cuteness. Hope you enjoy!
Harry couldn't stop staring, he really couldn't. The sight before him was just too odd that he wasn't able to pull his eyes away. All around him, he could hear the quiet murmurings of his co-workers, other Aurors that had come in for the mandatory staff meeting that Shacklebolt required everyone to attend once a month. Normally, these meetings lacked any sort of affair, but this time, something out of the ordinary had caught his attention.
He felt a nudge in his side and turned to face Ron, who unceremoniously flopped down into the seat next to him. His friend threw him a tired grin before shaking his head.
"My favorite time of the month," he laughed dryly, shaking his head. "Anyways, what's caught your attention? You seemed to be staring at something rather intently when I came in."
Harry's lips thinned at having been caught looking. But he really couldn't help it. It was really a strange sight to see.
"Malfoy is wearing glasses," he said seriously, finding the strength to pull his eyes away from the metallic frames that were perched on the other Auror's face a few seats down. "It's really odd."
If Ron thought his observation was weird, he hid it well. Probably for his friend's own benefit.
"Yeah, I heard he needed some. Did you hear about the accident?"
Harry murmured a quiet noise of acknowledgement. He had heard about the incident, which had been the talk of the Auror Department just the week before. Malfoy's last case had been a rough one, and though he and Bittersworth – the senior Auror he had been partnered with – had successfully caught their target, they didn't leave the mission completely unscathed. Bittersworth had been sporting a rather nasty looking cut on the whole left side of his face, one that was dark red and very angry looking despite what the healers did to try to heal it. Apparently, it would take a few months for it to disappear completely, but Bittersworth took it in stride, saying that it added a brooding, unfriendly feel to his persona that would definitely work in the interrogation room.
Malfoy, on the other had, didn't sport any visible cuts or injuries, but the rumor was that his injuries were far more painful than the ones his partner had to endure. Right before the end of their mission, he had been hexed rather nastily and temporarily blinded as their target had tried a dangerous maneuver to escape that included sending a bright light blasting straight into Malfoy's eyes. The wizard was trying to permanently blind him, but luckily the Mediwizards got to the scene soon enough and could reverse some of the damage. Harry wasn't sure if Malfoy's vision was fixed completely, but from the glasses that now sat on the bridge of his nose, Harry assumed that was not the case.
"You're staring again, mate," Ron chastised softly, before sitting straighter in his chair when Shacklebolt came into the room.
Harry shook his head, moving to stare at the Head Auror, who had cleared his throat to announce the start of their meeting. He listened with half an ear to the updates that Shacklebolt was making and was determined to stop staring at Malfoy, but every so often he caught his gaze lingering over to the side where the blond was attentively listening to the front of the room.
When the meeting finally wound down, Harry pushed back against the board room table and moved to stand as Ron already got out of his chair, stretching out his back.
"That one wasn't too eventful, was it?" Harry asked his friend, gathering up his notes. No new missions, no emergencies that they had to be on the lookout for. In fact, this was probably one of the most uneventful staff meetings they've had in the past six months.
"Can't say I'm complaining," Ron threw his friend a grin as they walked out the room. "I'm still busy with that case I told you last week about, the one with the crazy stalker? I don't really need anymore on my plate right now."
"I suppose," Harry agreed, thinking about all the paperwork that he had on his desk waiting for him to finish. "I do have a lot of paperwork that I have to catch up on…"
After they both stopped by the break room to grab some tea, they soon parted ways to their own offices on opposite sides of the hallway.
"See you tonight for some drinks after work?" Ron asked over his shoulder, waving a hand behind him in the form of saying goodbye.
"Sure, sounds good," Harry replied back before walking into his office to survey the papers littering his desk.
Giving a sigh, he eyed the stacks of paper reproachfully. He really did think that the reports he had in his office magically multiplied themselves. Sipping his tea, he took a seat at his desk and gave a brief survey of his work area. Now, which report should he tackle first?
He was saved from making a decision when a soft knock came at the door to his office. With a smile, he glanced up to see who was at his door and nearly choked on the tea that he had just swallowed. Coughing, he quickly put his cup down and leaned over for a second to make sure he wasn't going to spew any of his tea back up. Once he was sure he was ok, he looked up with a slightly embarrassed look. Of course he had to end up looking stupid in front of the other man, of all people. Malfoy, for what it was worth, just stared at him with an eyebrow raised, moving to fold his arms as he leaned on the door's frame.
"Ok there, Potter?" he asked with a hint of sarcasm. "Good think the Dark Lord didn't know you were so easily surprised. He would've been able to get rid of you with only one cup of coffee."
Harry found himself frowning at the other man. Of course Malfoy would be able to ruin his mood in just one sentence. Rolling his eyes, he waved at the other man, wanting him to just get on with what he wanted so he wouldn't have to look at him anymore.
Or his glasses, his mind added treacherously. Which don't look half bad…
Snorting, Malfoy pushed himself off the frame though he didn't unfold his arms.
"I just wanted to see if you still had the report on the Lestrange case," he replied, before glancing at the stacks of papers that littered Harry's desk. "Though it seems that you have decided to put together your own archives in here… You wouldn't happen to also have the report from the case I just finished up, do you?"
Harry decided that not replying to the other man's insult would be the best course of action. Sitting up, he glanced at the files on his desk and located the Lestrange case under some other reports that he knew he had to submit before Shacklebolt got onto him about tardiness. Shuffling the papers back into the folder, he held the report out in his hand, not moving from his desk just so Malfoy would have to come in and get it himself. Malfoy didn't say anything before he moved, unfolding his arms to reach out a hand to take the report.
"Thanks, Potter," he replied, much to the surprise of Harry. When was the last time Malfoy ever said thanks for anything?
As Harry watched Malfoy retreat to the door, he noticed him pausing in the doorway.
"I don't see how you can deal with these awful glasses," Draco commented offhandedly. "They are absolutely atrocious."
Without waiting for a response, he disappeared from Harry's office, leaving the other man staring at where he once was, with the comment he wanted to say still on the tip of his tongue.
Malfoy's glasses didn't look bad at all.
Over the next few days, Harry caught himself inexplicably drawn to staring at Malfoy. It wasn't as though he was attracted to the blond – hell, they barely got along with each other on good days – but there was something so intriguing with the idea that the other man now had to wear glasses. He really tried to look at Malfoy when other people weren't looking, giving sidelong glances or quick peeks when the other man happened to be in the room. Unfortunately for him, he had forgotten the fact that highly trained individuals who could pick up on things very easily surrounded him because that was what Aurors were trained to do.
"Harry, you're doing it again," Hermione said softly as she moved to sit back down on her barstool, putting down the beers that she had gotten from the bar. "Stop staring at him, you're going to make him upset."
He also forgot that Hermione was even more perceptive than all of his coworkers.
"I'm not staring," he complained, obediently turning back to look at his friend, giving a soft thanks as he took one of the beers.
"I'm half-surprised I haven't seen a trail of drool coming out of your mouth," she said mildly, rolling her eyes in exasperation.
"Hermione!" he sputtered, glad that he had only put the bottle to his lips and hadn't had anything to drink yet. "What is that supposed to mean?"
Hermione took a moment to look around for her boyfriend, who she spotted talking to some Aurors at the other side of the pub, before looking back at her friend.
"Harry," she said patiently, looking at him as though he were a two-year-old toddler. "You've been looking at him nonstop since he got here. And you look like a lovesick schoolgirl."
Harry could feel the heat rising from his neck and moving all the way to his cheeks.
"Excuse me?" his eyes were wide as he stared at her incredulously. "I am not doing that!"
Before Hermione could provide a differing response, he continued, "I just think that it's very odd to see Malfoy in glasses, that's all! I just can't help staring at them on his face. He looks so different!"
"Harry, they're just glasses," Hermione replied, sipping at her own drink. "They're hardly any different from your own."
Harry gave her a confused look, "What are you talking about, Hermione? Mine look nothing like his!"
He moved to pull them off his face, watching as everything went blurry as he held the glasses out across the table.
"See these?" he shook them for added effect before moving to put them back on his face. "These look nothing like his. And mine only get in the way. His actually make his face nice to look at."
He took a sharp intake of breath and hoped that Hermione somehow missed that slip. From the knowing gaze she gave him, as well as the slight quirk on her lips, he guessed that she hadn't.
"I'm not judgmental, so I won't make you feel bad about liking him," she shook her head as he tried to cut her off. "He's definitely more decent than he was when we were in school, but Harry, there's no point in denying what is so easy to see for everyone else. I think you like him."
Harry stared at his friend for a good minute or two before sighing and shaking his head. There was no point in trying to convince his friend that she was wrong, no matter how ridiculous her claims were. Once she had an idea stuck in her head, there was no turning back. With a sigh, he sat back in his chair and watched as Ron finally came back over to join them. When Hermione and Ron struck up a conversation about where they should go for dinner on their date on Friday evening, Harry found his gaze wandering back over to a certain blond that had his back turned to Harry and was talking quietly with one of the Unspeakables who decided to join the Auror Department for drinks that night.
Might as well fuel Hermione's fire, he thought grumpily, staring at the dark blue jumper that Malfoy was wearing and noted how it somehow complimented his pale skin. I just like his glasses, that's all. Just jealous that they can make him look better when all mine do is cover up half my face…
The next two days were surprisingly busy at work, with Harry coming in early and leaving late to wrap up not only the reports that he knew were almost overdue, but a slew of new cases were coming in and were being fielded to new teams of Aurors. Harry had received a new case file earlier in the day, but as he seemed to be in the zone for wrapping up his reports, he wanted to wait to review it until he was finished with the last report. The case file on his desk wasn't glowing, which would indicate an emergency mission, so he knew that he could take the time to look at it later in the day.
Just as he was signing off on the last report, he heard the telltale signs of someone stepping into his office and sitting down in the second chair in his room. Taking a moment to package up the report and charm it to end up in the appropriate mailbox, he put his quill down and looked up to see who had come into his office without a word.
"Hello Malfoy," he blinked in surprise, staring at the man that was sitting across from him. "Did you need something?"
Malfoy regarded the other man for a moment in silence, almost to the point where Harry became uncomfortable, until he waved a folder in front of the other wizard.
"I wanted to come discuss the newest assignment with you," he offered at last, laying the report down on Harry's newly-cleaned desk. "The one that we start on Sunday evening."
Harry paused, staring at the report that Malfoy put on his desk in confusion. What mission, and why would he have to talk to Harry about it? Reading the large case numbers on the front of the folder, he recognized them being the same as the case numbers that were on the report lying unopened on his desk. Suddenly putting two and two together, he looked back up to the other Auror.
"I haven't had the chance to read the report yet," he admitted, bracing himself for a scathing retort from the other man. "I've been busy with wrapping up the reports that I had this week."
"I can tell," Malfoy replied dryly, rolling his eyes as he sat back in his chair. "I've noticed that I can actually see part of your desk now."
Malfoy shifted in his seat to get more comfortable and the lighting in the room reflected off his glasses. Whatever Harry was going to say suddenly vanished, the glasses distracting his train of thought. Unfortunately, it seemed as though Malfoy was expecting a retort because he gave Harry the most peculiar look when Harry didn't respond. Embarrassed, Harry moved to grab his own report and opened it on his desk. Right at the top of the parchment, he noted that the mission would involve just two Aurors, Malfoy and himself.
He cleared his throat, willing himself to get over his embarrassment.
"So," he spoke, trying to pretend that he didn't just get distracted by the other Auror's face – not his face, his glasses! – and forgot what he was going to say. "Could you give me a briefing on it?"
To his surprise, Malfoy just nodded his head and picked up his report to read. Harry was looking at his own report, but he was still able to notice when Malfoy had to pause to adjust his glasses to see properly.
Before he knew what he was doing, the question was already out of his mouth, "Do they hurt?"
If the other man was surprised by the unexpected question, he didn't show it. Instead, he moved his hand away from adjusting the glasses on his face and gave a slight shrug.
"In dim and normal lighting, it isn't too bad," he replied softly, concentrating on his report. "Just have to get used to wearing the glasses to be able to see."
Harry was intrigued. As far as he knew, this was probably the most civil conversation the two of them ever had that wasn't directly about an assignment.
"I hope that they get better," Harry said earnestly, taking another glance at the other man's face. "I'm sure they will."
Malfoy glanced up through his glasses to look at the other man, a faint smirk on his lips. Harry could feel the warmth spreading at the base of his neck, so he looked down and finally concentrated on the report.
Malfoy flipped a page over in the report, "The assignment is pretty straight forward. Multiple wizards and witches have been going to the hospital with signs of being poisoned, though no correlation has really been connected other than the fact that they all showed the same symptoms of being poisoned."
"Hmm…" Harry flipped through his own copy of the report, looking at the hospital diagnoses. "Some of these symptoms look like something someone would get from food poisoning. Why would this be a concern for us?"
"Turn to the last page of the report," Malfoy said, before continuing. "Muggles have been showing up with the same symptoms in London, except that the symptoms are progressing more rapidly. Three muggles have died from the poison exposure."
Harry scanned the report and came across some interesting information, reaching out to grab his quill to make some notes.
"There seemed to be a coincidence with the muggle victims at least," he murmured, underlining some words in his report. "They all recently shopped at a new beauty store on King's Road. Though when the muggle forensics tested the products from the shops, they weren't able to find anything out of the ordinary?"
"Of course they wouldn't find anything," Malfoy snorted. "If a wizard or witch was behind the poisoning."
Harry made a small sound of agreement before closing his report.
"You said that we started on Sunday night? Why not on Monday morning?" he asked, not-so-casually looking at a point above the other man's head so he wouldn't have to stare at his face.
Malfoy flipped through his report looking for something until he stopped on a page and turned the report around, tossing it over to Harry. Leaning over the desk, he pointed to a small memo written at the top of the page.
"New initiative," Malfoy said, sounding rather unhappy by what he was about to say. "Shacklebolt says to establish better relationships between team members that haven't worked together before, we must make plans to meet up before the mission. And since I value my time off during the weekends, I thought it would be better if we did that on Sunday evening."
He pulled his folder back just as Harry finished reading the memo, closing it with a snap.
"Unless you have any objections?" he asked, raising an eyebrow in what seemed to be challenge.
Harry shook his head, sighing a little as he sat back in his chair, "If that's what we're required to do, then that's what we're required to do."
"Great," Malfoy stood up from the chair, taking this as a chance to leave the room. "Let's plan to meet at seven that evening."
Harry offered a noise of agreement, pushing the folder to the corner of the desk to remind him to take it home for further review. When he didn't hear footsteps receding, he looked up to find Malfoy still standing in the same place, staring at him. When Malfoy caught his attention, another smirk pulled at his lips.
"Thanks for your concern," he said in a way that made Harry feel as though he was mocking him. "I didn't know you cared."
Harry made a face at the other man, wanting to retort that he definitely did not care whether or not Malfoy was blind as a bat, but Malfoy was already leaving his office. Once the other man was further down the hallway, Harry let out a frustrated sigh. He hoped that Malfoy's eyesight would be better by the time they met Sunday.
On Saturday evening while Harry was getting ready to go out, a large eagle owl knocked on his window. After opening it to let the bird in, the owl dropped the parchment that it held in its claw before swooping back out into the open air. Harry glanced down at the heavy parchment and recognized the seal as the one belonging to Malfoy. Frowning, he broke the seal and opened the letter. If Malfoy was going to demand that they change the date and time of their forced meet-up, Harry was going to have none of that.
Instead, the parchment held nothing more than the address of an upscale pub that Harry had been to once or twice. Harry snorted as he put the message down and went back to the mirror. He guessed Malfoy thought he was too good to even say hello in the letter.
Hearing his fireplace fire up from floo powder, he took once last glance at himself before leaving his bedroom.
"Hey Ron," he greeted his friend, who was straightening up from the fireplace and brushing off floo powder. "Ready to go?"
"Hey Harry," Ron offered as he looked over to his friend with a smile. "Yeah, ready to go. Hermione and Ginny will meet up with us when we get there."
Once they Apparated and reached their destination, Harry was assaulted with loud music and the smell of smoke.
"I don't see why we have to come here!" he shouted over the music, following his friend's lead around various scantily clad witches and even some wizards. "This isn't exactly where we usually go on a Saturday night!"
"I know!" Ron shouted back as they weaved through the crowd. "But Hermione's making us, it's probably because Ginny is still feeling upset about the whole situation!"
Harry winced, knowing that tonight would be about putting Ginny in a better mood. Just a week ago, she made discovered that the wizard she had been dating was only trying to date her so that he could find any dirt on Harry, Hermione, or Ron. When Harry found out about it, he was shocked because over the years his popularity had died down almost to the point where he wasn't in the newspaper every other week. When the rest of the Weasleys found out, it wasn't as pretty. Being the youngest and the only girl in the family tended to cause overprotectiveness. And when Ron and Harry had to respond to an emergency situation the week prior over an altercation between Ginny's ex and George, it had been very tricky trying to explain to Shacklebolt why George didn't need to be arrested for trying to permanently turn the man into a cockroach.
Once they reached the small table where Hermione and Ginny were, Harry offered both of them a small hug before waving over a server.
"Going to have fun tonight, Ginny?" he asked with a smile, turning to look over the large dance floor.
"Oh, you bet your wand on it," the redhead replied with a smirk, looking over the club as well. "Nothing better to get rid of heartbreak than finding hot wizards to take home."
Ron turned away from the server and made a face, "Really, Ginny? I don't need to hear about my sister and what she does with wizards."
She picked up her drink and raised it to her brother in a mock toast, smiling, "I wouldn't want to traumatize you."
With that, she moved to disappear in the dance floor.
Harry turned when he felt a nudge, taking the glass of firewhiskey that Hermione handed over to him.
"And how did she convince you to come out?" he asked his friend, looking at her outfit. "And you look very nice, Hermione. It still weirds me out that you have clothes that are appropriate for places like this."
"I could say the same about you," she made a face as she took a sip of the brightly colored drink in her hand. "At least I was able to find clothes to fill my closet on my own."
Harry laughed at the dig, shaking his head, "Ok, you win. Without you, I wouldn't have anything to wear tonight or any night when we somehow get dragged out to these situations."
"Situation? This isn't a situation! You make it sound as though we're forced to come here because of an assignment, Harry," Ron said reproachfully, giving his friend an exasperated look. "I know you hate being at places like this, but loosen up for once! You're single, there's wizards everywhere, and just because we're here for Ginny doesn't mean we can't be here for you either!"
"There's nothing wrong with being single," Harry grouched, unhappy that his friend was now focusing on his love life. "I'm perfectly happy with not being in a relationship."
"Which is why you've been oogling Malfoy at work?" Ron shot back, with an innocent look to Hermione. "Or was I just mistaking all the times you were sneaking looks?"
Harry could feel his face burning as both his friends looked at him. Picking up his glass, he quickly finished the rest of his drink, letting the burn settle into his stomach before opening his mouth to reply.
"Yeah yeah, it's not him, it's his glasses," Ron laughed at his discomfort. "Whatever you say, mate."
Harry sighed, deciding to go to the bar to get away from his friend's teasing.
"You guys do whatever couples do at the club," he said, waving them towards the dance floor. "I'm going to the bar to get a drink."
He turned and made his way around people, intending to get a very strong drink when he finally got to the bar. Maybe then he'll loosen up enough so his friends wouldn't have to talk to him about the lack of love life he's had over the past few years. Even though they were teasing, he knew that they said it only out of concern. After Harry had come out and told them that he found himself more attracted to men than women, instead of finding it easier to find someone that he could possibly want to start a relationship with, everything seemed to get that much more complicated. In the end, he found that being single and going home alone was less bothersome than trying to weed through all of rotten people that would try to get with him.
Once he got to the bar, one of the bartenders, a really pretty blonde witch with bright blue eyes, came up to him.
"How can I help you, cutie?" she asked with a smile, wiping a glass clean. "You look like you need something to put you in the mood, what's with the frown?"
Harry offered her a faint smile, shaking his head.
"You've hit the nail on the head," he said as he leaned against the bar. "I'd like something on the strong side, please."
"You got it!"
With a wink, she moved away to get him his drink. Harry hoped that it was indeed strong enough to get him through the next few hours. When a hand dropped down to his shoulder, he barely kept himself from jumping around and taking his wand out for self-defense. Instead, he turned his head to the side and was surprised to see a familiar face.
"Hello Potter," Blaise Zabini smirked, pulling his hand away as he moved to lean against the bar. "Surprised to see you here."
Harry cleared his throat, calming down once he realized it was only the ex-Slytherin.
"Hello Zabini," he greeted cordially. Though they weren't as antagonistic as they were to each other in school, Harry could say that he barely knew Zabini as anything but an acquaintance.
"Oh, don't be so stiff," Zabini barked out a laugh, waving down a bartender. "You're probably the most miserable looking sod in this entire club. If you weren't going to have fun here, why did you even come?"
Harry's drink came and he offered his thanks to the bartender. Picking up the tall glass filled with some faintly glowing green concoction with smoke billowing from it, he took a tentative sip, wincing a little as it assaulted his senses. He glanced at Zabini, who was looking at him with a slightly impressed look on his face.
"Trying to get drunk, Potter?" Zabini raised an eyebrow, watching as Harry took another sip of his drink. "You know, I'll admit, I wonder what you're like smashed. I bet you're a lot of fun."
"Oh bugger off, Zabini," Harry rolled his eyes as the other man gave him a mock-leer. "If I didn't know any better, I'd say you were hitting on me."
Zabini paused for a moment to order some drinks before focusing back on Harry.
"Who said I wasn't?" he asked with a wicked grin, taking the time to make an obvious attempt at checking Harry out. "You're not half bad, Potter. If only you could do something about that hair and those hideous glasses."
Snorting, Harry threw the other man a look, "Now you sound just like Malfoy."
Harry noticed the other man giving him a thoughtful look before his drinks came. Picking up one, he gestured for a toast.
"Cheers, Potter," he said, clinking his glass against the one in Harry's hand. "Hopefully your night ends up better than it started!"
Taking a swig of his drink, he picked up the other two drinks that he had ordered. Before leaving, he gestured to an area off to the side of the club, where the VIP tables were located.
"You're more than welcome to come join us at our table," he offered with another deep smirk. "There's someone there who I'm sure you'd love to talk to."
Harry glanced over to where Zabini pointed and was unsurprised to see his coworker standing up in the VIP section.
"Somehow I doubt that Malfoy would want to hang out with me," Harry replied dryly, glancing back at Zabini. "But thank you, Blaise. Maybe another time."
Blaise shrugged, "Suit yourself, Potter. Offer still stands, though. Chin up, you're not at a funeral, you know."
With that, the other man left to wade through the crowd. Harry watched him until he disappeared into the VIP section. Sighing, he drank more before glancing over at the table his friends had occupied, noticing that it was empty. With all three of his friends somewhere on the dance floor, what was he going to busy himself with? Steeling his nerves, he finished off the remainder of his drink before waving the bartender down for another one. Maybe for once, he'll listen to his friends' advice and relax.
Harry wasn't sure how much time had passed, but after one more of those drinks, he felt more than a little tipsy and somehow convinced himself to mingle on the dance floor. He was currently dancing with some witch that reminded him of Parvati Patil, though he was getting tired of trying to keep her hands away from getting too close for comfort. After the song ended, he gave her what he hoped was a charming smile before moving away to go find somewhere to sit for awhile. Though he knew he was physically fit from being an Auror, he wasn't used to dancing all night in clubs and wasn't quite sure how his friends could endure such tiring activity.
Weaving through the crowd, he found an empty table near a corner close to the VIP section. He snagged the table and waved a server down, wanting to get something to quench his thirst. When the server returned with a bottle of water, Harry was surprised to see a pale hand reach out to snatch it. Turning to see who had the nerve to steal his drink, he found himself stunned as he immediately recognized the one person he didn't want to run into standing before him.
"Thanks Potter," Malfoy said before – and this is where Harry knew he was drunk because it would never happen in real life – winking at him. "I was thirsty."
The other man opened the bottle and leaned his head back to drink. Harry found his eyes trailing down the other man's neck and watched as his throat flexed as he swallowed. Harry swallowed as well and glanced away, knowing that he was definitely drunk if he was starting to think inappropriate thoughts about the other Auror. When Malfoy tilted the bottle towards Harry in offering, Harry found himself shaking his head even though his throat had suddenly died out.
"You… You can have it," he said, clearing his throat as he tried to avoid eye contact with the other man. "I'm not thirsty."
Malfoy closed the bottle slowly and Harry wished for him to leave so that Harry wouldn't have to feel so uncomfortable. Instead, the other man stepped closer into Harry's personal space and Harry had no choice but to look at the other man.
"What are you doing?" he asked in surprise, glaring into the other man's face. "You're in my space."
He realized his mistake one second too late and found himself staring into the sharp gaze of the other man, accented by those bloody glasses that he had been wearing lately. Feeling the familiar burn at his neck, as well as an unfamiliar tightness in his belly, he tried to force himself to look somewhere else but with the close proximity of the blond wizard, he wasn't able to look anywhere else without looking stupid. To his surprise, the other man leaned in even closer, a wicked look crossing his face.
"Don't think I haven't noticed, Potter," he accused softly, leaning down only to peer up at Harry's eyes through his glasses.
"N-noticed what?" Harry asked, eyes widening.
Malfoy's lips turned up into the hint of a smirk as he leaned forward, letting his lips brush against Harry's earlobe. A shiver worked through Harry's body and he was suddenly aware of just how close the other man was. The sudden dizziness he then experienced made him wonder if he had drank a little too much.
Malfoy chuckled before whispering into Harry's ear, "I've noticed you staring at me, Potter. Do you want to tell me why?"
Harry pulled back with a gasp, unable to understand how he got caught staring at Malfoy by none other than Malfoy himself. Face flushing, he shook his head sharply.
"I have not been staring at you," he denied, stepping away. "I have no idea what you're talking about."
Suddenly, the club seemed way too hot and his head was too fuzzy for him to be around the other man.
"I think that Kingsley would say this suffices as spending time together," he muttered, pushing past Malfoy to go to the exit. "I'll see you Monday, Malfoy."
Without another word, he quickly made his way out of the club, promising to send Hermione and Ron a note apologizing for leaving without them.
The sound of someone shouting his name made Harry groan and roll over in bed the next morning. Unable to find his glasses on his nightstand or under his pillow, he gave a big sigh, heaving himself out of bed and deciding that he'd first see who wanted to wake him up so early in the morning. Only when he put his foot down and a loud crunch met his ears did he realize where his glasses had gone to the night before. With a long string of curses, he ignored the glasses for the moment and stumbled his way to his study.
"Yes?" he asked groggily, rubbing at his eyes as he slowly made his way to the fireplace.
Kneeling down, he squinted into the fire, seeing the blurry outline of Hermione staring back at him.
"Harry!" she sounded relieved, though Harry didn't understand what the big deal was. It wasn't like he had been kidnapped from the club or anything.
Seeing Hermione's miffed expression made him realize belatedly that his thought had been spoken out loud.
"Sorry, Hermione," he apologized, sighing as he took a seat on the rug. "I didn't mean to leave without telling you, but I ran into Malfoy and he was being a prat so I left."
"Oh Harry," Harry didn't have to look to know what kind of expression she was giving him. "You shouldn't let him ruin your night, you should've just ignored him."
"It's ok Hermione," Harry leaned back on his hands. "I was ready to go anyways, had too much to drink."
He made a face, remembering his glasses, "And I broke my glasses this morning. Hermione, do you know how to fix them? Every time I try to use Reparo, it never comes back quite the same."
He could see the blurry outline of his friend shake her head.
"Last time I helped you out with it, you still had issues," Hermione pointed out. "And you ended up just ordering a new pair."
"Yeah…" Harry tugged at his hair, unhappy that he had one more thing to worry about. "I guess I'll send an owl out and get a new pair. Since it's the weekend, I'm not sure when I'll get the new ones. And I don't want to be walking around blind for the rest of the day."
"Harry, you still have those contacts that I gave you, don't you?" Hermione asked. "From that one assignment you had?"
"Oh yeah, I completely forgot about them," Harry admitted, glad that his friend could remember such small details. He had completely forgotten that he had purchased some contacts to wear for an undercover assignment that he had a few months prior. "I suppose I could wear them for now. Thanks, Hermione."
"Anyways," he continued, slowly picking himself up from the floor. "I'm going to go take a shower so that I can feel a little more human again. I'll talk to you later."
After hearing her goodbye, Harry made the slow trek back to his bedroom, intent on taking a long, hot shower and then digging up those contacts so that he could have full sight again.
An hour later, Harry found himself feeling better than he did when he just woke up and finally able to see clearly thanks to some quick wand work. If it wasn't for his wand, he wasn't sure if he'd be able to find those little contacts even if he had his glasses on. He gave a mournful look to his broken glasses before cleaning up the remains and tossing them in the bin. A few days without his glasses wouldn't kill him, he knew. Just had to get used to not having anything on his face.
"And it's only for a day or two," he admitted aloud as he made his way to the kitchen.
For the rest of the day, he didn't get very much accomplished other than tidying up his home and reading through the rest of the report for the mission he'd start the next day. Reading the report gave Harry the unfortunate reminder that he was technically supposed to meet up with Malfoy that night at a pub, but he remembered rather clearly that he told Malfoy he wasn't going to meet up with him that night. And when he saw that it was nine at night and he hadn't gotten an angry floo call or letter from the other man, he guessed that Malfoy had believed him.
Now, if only he wasn't assigned to be Malfoy's partner. He could do with the rest of the week avoiding him, too.
On Monday morning, Harry felt a little childish as he holed himself up in his office, trying to delay the inevitable of meeting with Malfoy as long as possible. Unfortunately, at a quarter after ten, he had wrapped up everything else he had on his to-do list and part of him was feeling guilty because their assignment did seem rather serious, with it including three casualties.
Slowly standing up, he grabbed his report, a notepad, and a quill and made his way over to Malfoy's office, all the while feeling as though he was walking to his doom. Luckily for him, the hallway was unusually crowded and a few people stopped him for small talk, with the majority of them providing him positive comments about his temporarily spectacle-free face. Soon enough though, the crowd thinned out and he had to continue his trudge to the blond Auror's office.
Seeing as the door had been closed, he knocked on it softly before a loud "Come in!" was issued from the other side. Bracing himself, he opened the door and stepped in. Malfoy's head was down as it seemed as though he was writing something down on a ledger, however that didn't stop him from knowing who it was that entered his office.
"I was wondering if I was going to have to get up and fetch you myself," he said without stopping with his writing. "Come in Potter, I'm not going to bite. And please close the door behind you."
Despite his nerves, Harry couldn't help but get annoyed by the other man's attitude. Always making it seem like everyone else was holding him up. Rolling his eyes, he closed the door and moved to sit down on the second chair in the room, placing the items in his arm on the corner of the desk.
After a few seconds of nothing but the sound of Malfoy's quill scratching against the paper, Harry glanced over at him and noticed that he still had the glasses on his face. Unable to help himself, Harry took a little closer look and found himself admiring the other man's face. No matter how rotten Malfoy was, Harry was finally able to admit that he was at least decent to look at on the outside.
As if Malfoy had known what Harry was doing, he paused in his writing to reply, "Hang on one second, Potter. I'm just wrapping this one section up and then we can talk about the assignment."
Though Malfoy didn't actually look up at Harry, he couldn't help but feel as though he got caught doing something he shouldn't have. Looking away, one of his hands moved up to adjust his glasses – a nervous habit that bore no comfort for him today as he had temporarily forgotten that he had no glasses. After a few more minutes of silence, Malfoy seemed to wrap up his writing and put his quill down, moving to stretch his arms above his head with a soft sigh. Harry's eyes traitorously found themselves wandering up the long, smooth line that was Malfoy's torso. Luckily, this time he was able to avert his gaze before being caught in the act. However, Malfoy looked up and this time, it was his turn to stare.
"What?" Harry asked self-consciously, wondering if he had remnants from the biscuits he ate this morning on his face. "Is there something on my face?"
Malfoy blinked once before shaking his head.
"No, Potter," he replied lightly, still looking over. "I was just surprised, I didn't expect to see you without your glasses on."
"Yeah…" Harry admitted. "I accidently broke my glasses, so I'm waiting for a new pair to come in. Until then, I have to wear contacts."
He offered a faint grin at the other man, "Looks like we've traded spaces, huh?"
Malfoy nodded slowly, "It seems like we have."
"I will say, though," Malfoy continued, standing up to move around his desk, going over to a filing cabinet. "That is a vast improvement over those hideous muggle monstrosities that usually occupy your face."
For once, the heat that Harry felt raising on his neck had nothing to do with embarrassment. He should've known that the two of them could never have a civilized conversation without someone getting angry.
"Well, I'm sorry that not everyone looks as good as you in glasses," he snapped out, glaring at the other man. "You know, since we weren't blessed with the Malfoy genes or anything."
Instead of rising to the bait, Malfoy turned around and laughed. Laughed right in Harry's face. Standing up angrily, Harry found himself stabbing a finger in the other man's chest.
"I don't know what your problem is, Malfoy!" he continued, angered that he could feel so offended by something so little that the other man said. "But if you have such a big problem with me-"
Malfoy grabbed his finger with one hand, moving it out of the way so he could step closer to Harry.
"Did I offend you, Potter?" he asked, one brow arched. "I can assure you that I meant it as a compliment."
Without warning, the blond leaned his head down and captured Harry's lips in a soft kiss. Completely flummoxed, Harry could do nothing more than just stand there in shock. However, when he felt something warm and wet sneak out of the other man's lips to trace his own, he made a small noise of surprise and pushed himself away.
"What the hell was that, Malfoy?!" he shouted, eyes wide and cheeks burning. "What the hell do you think you're playing at?"
Wiping his lips with his sleeve, he could feel the humiliation burning through his body. Without another word, he grabbed the items he left on the desk and rushed out of the office. He planned to lock himself in his own office for the rest of the day. Once he got there, he slammed his door shut, locked it with the wave of his wand, and slumped into his chair. Burrowing his head in his hands, he let out a small whine of despair.
What exactly was Malfoy playing at?
And even though he was furious at the other man, there was still a tingle on his lips where he'd been kissed. He tugged at his hair anxiously, wanting to forget that the incident ever happened.
Especially since he found that he enjoyed the way Malfoy felt against him.
For the next few days, Harry did everything in his power to avoid Draco Malfoy. He rarely left his office, and when he did, he always made sure to either be with another person or make sure that Malfoy was occupied in his own office before venturing out. Luck was on his side, as more pressing assignments came in that caused the two of them to be split and Harry put on a different assignment with a Junior Auror. All in all, he was sure that he was going to get through the entire week without seeing one second of that evil blond man.
Not only was it not fair that he had to distract Harry with glasses, and then pounce on him unsuspectingly, but now when he tried to sleep, Harry was tormented by dreams – nightmares really – of Malfoy and his eyes and his neck and his body and what he could do with his body… especially to Harry.
Harry paused in writing up a correspondence letter, shaking his head as he realized where his thoughts were headed. He really needed to concentrate on his work. His nights were plagued with Malfoy, so he was running on very little sleep. He definitely did not need his daytime thoughts to be filled with inappropriate ideas that his own traitorous mind wanted to supply him with.
Deciding that he needed a break or else he would go crazy, Harry stood up from his desk. Taking his glasses off for a second, he rubbed his eyes before replacing them. At least his new glasses had come in, providing him with some comfort. And apparently these new frames were "much better suited" for his face, or at least that's what the female Aurors had mentioned when they saw him with his new glasses. It wasn't like it mattered too much to Harry, anyways. Glasses were meant to be functional.
As he was walking in the hallway, he passed by two witches who were also talking about glasses. However, when he heard Malfoy's name slip from one of their lips, he couldn't help but slow down to hear the rest of their conversation.
"I'm so glad that he doesn't have to wear them anymore," one of the witches giggled softly to her friend. "He looks so much better without them on his face. They just covered up his eyes, I think."
Oh, so Malfoy doesn't have to wear glasses anymore. Good for him, Harry thought. And me too. Now I won't stare at him anymore and he won't have any misconceptions about the two of us. Not that there's anything between us anyways.
The other witch started talking, which pulled Harry out of his own thoughts.
"Well, he only had to wear them for a day or two," she said with a laugh. "It wasn't like it was an eternity, Mallory. He was back to his old self on Thursday."
"That's true," the other witch laughed as well as they continued down the hallway. "Now if only Harry would decide to wear contacts all the time. Did you see him on Monday? So cute…"
Harry stood in the hallway, unable to fully comprehend what he had just heard. Malfoy's eyesight was better two days after he started wearing his glasses? He mentally counted the days in his head. Then why did Harry see the other man in glasses every day after that, including the last time he saw him? Confusion slowly started to mix with anger and before he knew it, Harry was making his way down to Malfoy's office. Without even knocking, he opened the door with a loud bang.
"Malfoy, just what do you think you're playing at?" he demanded, stepping into the office where the other man had just been sealing up an envelope. "Why have you been wearing glasses every time I've seen you when you didn't need to wear them since last Thursday?"
Malfoy took the sight of an angered Harry all in stride, getting up to sit at the corner of his desk.
"I don't understand why you'd care so much, Potter," he responded calmly, watching Harry with a critical eye. "What does me wearing glasses have anything to do with you? I don't see how I have upset you."
"You didn't need to wear them!" Harry shouted, knowing full well that others might be able to hear them outside in the hallway. "You tricked me!"
"Potter," Malfoy said abruptly, sitting a little straighter as he folded his arms over his chest. "What sort of eye sight problem do you have?"
Harry, completely thrown off by the question, could do nothing but answer him truthfully.
"I'm nearsighted," he huffed, his anger slowly ebbing away as he realized how foolish he probably looked to the other man. "I don't understand what that has to do with anything. I just wanted to tell you to leave me alone!"
Malfoy shifted off the desk, moving to stand in front of the other man.
"If I didn't know any better," he said slowly, staring straight into Harry's own eyes. "I'd think you were farsighted."
"What are you going on about?" Harry asked in confusion, staring at the other man as if he had grown another head. "I can't see far away, hence why I need glasses and why I am nearsighted. I understand that you only had to wear glasses temporarily, but the concept isn't that hard to grasp."
"Potter, you're misunderstanding me," Malfoy replied as he slowly made his way over to the door, closing it softly with his foot.
Unable to deal with Malfoy's incomprehensible words, Harry spun around, his anger returning.
"Listen here, Malfoy," he said in a low voice, pointing accusingly at him. "I don't know why you have to bother me. Haha, you found out that I found you attractive, so what? I know you're repulsed by me and my glasses but that doesn't mean you have the right to fuck around with me!"
Harry suddenly found himself standing toe-to-toe with the other man. Wanting to put some distance between the two of them, he tried to take a step back, only to be stopped by Malfoy gripping his arm.
"You're misunderstanding me," Malfoy repeated, as though he wasn't interrupted in the first place. "I am telling you that you are farsighted because it's taken this long and you still don't see what's right in front of your face."
Harry glanced down at the hand around his arm before looking back up to the man invading his personal space.
He swallowed nervously, "What's in front of my face?"
Without another word, Malfoy loosened his hold around Harry's arm and leaned in to kiss Harry for the second time in one week. This time around, however, Harry was just a little less confused. And with one of Malfoy's hands gentling cupping his face and the other tugging Harry closer to him, Harry didn't really have the heart to tell him to stop. Not that he really minded, anyways.
After a few more minutes of slow, languid kisses, Harry felt a leg nudge between his own and suddenly the temperature in the room rose a few degrees. Before they could get any further, however, a loud voice interrupted their moment.
"Malfoy!" Ron's voice boomed from the hallway before the door was opened. "I need that report that you borrowed from me the other-"
Harry jerked back just in time to see the disgusted look on his friend's face.
"Jeez!" Ron made a choking noise as he turned on his heel and walked straight out of the office. "Learn how to lock the door! I don't need to throw up my lunch!"
With that, Ron slammed the door shut, leaving the two occupants of the room alone again. With a nervous cough, Harry tried to pull himself away from the other man in the room. Malfoy, on the other hand, had other plans as he tightened his hold, leaning down to steal another kiss.
"Anyways," Malfoy continued as though it was a normal occurrence for someone to burst into his room and catch him snogging Harry. "I've learned to appreciate your glasses, so you should stop thinking that I find them repulsive."
Harry gave Malfoy a disbelieving look, not knowing how this conversation was going to continue.
"You have?" he asked hesitatingly, wondering what bizarre comments would come out of his mouth next.
"Yes," Malfoy gave the other a wicked look, eyes focused solely on the man before him. "It does a wonderful job covering up what I should only have the privilege to see."
And with that, he leaned in to pluck Harry's glasses right off his face.
A few days later, Harry had come to realize that he appreciated Malfoy's – no, Draco's – face without glasses as well. Those witches were right, glasses really just get in the way of something wonderful.