AN: This story was written as a series of drabbles for alisanne and torino10154 's adventdrabbles challenge for 2012. This means that they are fairly short, and the story line is not as connected as the original. They are also written on a particular theme for each day. I will let you know the theme for the chapter.
They are not officially beta-ed. If you see it change, Yen, Raven, or Raya have ran their editing comb through it. So, if you see a mistake, please let me know.
Yen brought it to my attention that a timeline might be nice. So, here you go.
1.5 yrs ago - Harry's bond activated (Summer)
1 yr ago - Ron and Hermione bonded (Fall/Winter)
little under .5 yrs - "Until the Time is Right" ( End of Sept)
Present - "The Time is Right" Chapter 1 (End of Nov/ Beginning of Dec)
Today's theme: Naughty or Nice
Chapter 1: The Easy Way Out
Severus leaned against the wall of glass watching Harry as the younger man paced back and forth. "It is an easy decision. Just say yes."
Harry pinned him with a glare. "Easy... how is it an easy decision? This is a hard decision. How can I decide if it is naughty or nice?"
Severus quirked up a corner of his lips. "Easy. It is both. Naughty because Mrs. Weasley would not like missing it, but nice because it is less work for her."
"How about Ron and Hermione?" Harry stopped his pacing and watched Severus' face.
"No. No one but us." The soft reply was not what Harry wanted to hear.
"But why not? I was there for them!" Harry flung his hands up in the air as his voice bounced off the glass.
Severus crossed the room and wrapped Harry in his arms, holding the agitated man close. "Because this is just between us. Yes, I am grateful for all that Ronald and Hermione have done to get us to this point." He felt Harry still when he used his friends' given names. "But, this bond is ours." He let his fingers brush soothing strokes down the tense back. "And I don't want to share it."
He tipped Harry's head back so that he was looking directly into the confused eyes. "You accepted all of me." The statement was almost a question. He saw the mute agreeance in those eyes and felt the tiny nod. "I told you I am a secretive person. I've kept this bond a secret for over fifteen years. No one, not Albus, not the Dark Lord, not even you suspected a thing. I want to keep it as much of a secret as possible. I know that the other two will not spread it. They have proven themselves capable of not passing tales."
Harry interrupted him. "And Mum Weasley would tell it far and wide." He sighed lightly. "And if we invited Ron and Hermione, she would feel slighted. So, I guess we are being nice to her by not inviting anyone. And being naughty for the same reason. She is planning the wedding though." He waited until Severus agreed before he continued. "Where are we doing this at?" The when was a given. Severus wouldn't have brought it up if he didn't mean for them to do it now.
Severus smiled a true smile. "Where else?" He opened the glass door that led onto the back porch.
Harry couldn't keep his smile in. Of course it would be the back garden. This garden was a visual representation of the bond that was tying them together.
"You go over to your bench, and I'll be at my path." Severus headed to the stairwell, totally expecting Harry to be right behind him.
Harry stopped Severus with a hand on his shoulder. "Why are we going to be that far apart? Ron and Hermione were hand in hand. Don't we have to be close?"
Severus looked up into Harry's worried face. He reached up and ran a finger down his cheek. "Trust me, Harry. This will work. You will hear me; I will hear you."
Harry took a deep breath. This was a choice. He had to choose to trust Severus, just as he had chosen to stay with him. "So, do I sit on the bench or stand where all the paths converge?"
"Whichever you want." Severus continued toward his spot when Harry released his shoulder.
Harry looked over the wintering garden, taking in the resting beds. He refused to think of the plants as dead. "But the thistle and the dandelions aren't in bloom."
Severus shot him an amused look. "Then we are going to have to use their substitutes."
Harry grinned. Substitutes indeed. "Then Mr. Thistle, head to your spot."
"I've been trying. You've been holding me up. So get, Dan de Lion." Severus strode to where the paths met next to the porch.
Harry made it to his place and turned to look at Severus framed by the light coming from the house. Moonlight washed the garden making the crushed shell paths glow faintly.
Severus looked across the garden and saw Harry framed by the sea and sky that seemed to stretch to eternity. The moon was hanging in the sky just behind him. Taking a settling breath, he started to do what he had vowed he would find a way to stop, that dark day on top of the Astronomy tower .
Searching the shadows, he found Harry's eyes reflecting the moonlight and held them. "Harry, you have accepted all of me, and I have accepted all of you."
Harry was surprised to hear Severus' voice as it reached him across the multitudes of beds and even over the small fountain. Taking a breath, he hoped he remembered the ritual correctly. It was over a year since he had looked at it. "Severus, we understand the good and bad that make us who we are. We are willing to walk together with this knowledge and knowing that we still have more to learn and accept."
Harry's eyes widened as the paths near his feet began to glow a little brighter. He shot a look over at the paths that were near Severus and saw that they were doing the same.
Severus noticed the faint glowing and smiled. He was right to pick this spot. "We shall walk together through all times, connected heart to heart, soul to soul." The glow pushed forward, moving towards Harry's side of the paths.
Harry searched his mind for the next line. "We shall always know the other, no matter what form cloaks our hearts and souls." His glow pushed to meet Severus'. They were almost touching.
"You shall bring me peace, calm, and contentment no matter when we meet." Severus' words were spoken softly, but Harry heard them as if they were whispered in his ear.
"You shall bring me passion, color, and the will to succeed no matter when we meet." Harry's words were just as soft as Severus'.
Harry missed whatever Severus said next, but he knew it didn't matter. The paths of glowing lights met up at the sleeping bed of dandelions and thistle. A warm, comforting feeling flowed through him. The Infinity Bond was accepted and reinstated.
Severus felt the bond settle back into place. The glow hovered over the path looking eerily like the last time he had seen it. His eyes drifted back to Harry's. A smile filled his face and contentment curled about his heart. This was worth all the pain it took to get here.
A little while later, they were heading down the path towards the apparition point.
Harry stole a glance up at Severus. "So, we can't tell them?"
At Severus glare and head shake, he smiled. "Ron and Hermione are the only ones that know we are together anyway. But okay, I'll concede." He tightened his grip on the hand that was holding his. "So, if they ask what we've been doing today, what should I say?"
Severus looked over at Harry and smirked. "Tell them that it was too private and you just aren't up to sharing the details."
Harry burst out laughing. "You... you just want to see them blush!"
Severus shrugged. "It would be a pleasant addition to ending that line of conversation."
"You are going to have them believe we were doing something naughty, instead of something that was so-o-o wonderfully... beautifully... nice." As Severus nodded, Harry continued. "Okay, but you are going to have to say it. I couldn't and keep a straight face."
Severus pulled Harry into his arms and tipped the other man's face back so that he could see it. "You have to tell it to them." He dropped a kiss on to Harry's forehead. "Your blush would make it believable." He left off that it would also be delectable. "And remember, what we did was both naughty and nice. Just not the way they are going to think."
Harry shook his head before he brushed a kiss over the lips that were just above his. "You are going to make it up to me when we get home."
Severus just smiled, but a promise to do so was in his eyes. Harry couldn't wait for dinner to be over with.