Disclaimer:Not mine, obviously…
Notes:This is dedicated to Aubrey [Sterling & Emerald] for her birthday :-) Also a huge thankyou to Arwena [a.k.a. Yo!] for beta'ing this for me – mwa! Lastly, thankyou Kate [Mizzy] for giving me a title so I could post the damn thing already, and for being my fellow evil conspirer.
Lyrics are from Coldplay's beautiful new album and they're the reason I wrote the fic. I figured I should restrain myself and only use segments but if you'd like to read the entire songs then I can email them to you.
"He said I'm going to buy this place and burn it down
I'm going to put it six feet underground
He said I'm going to buy this place and watch it fall
Stand here beside me baby in the crumbling walls
Oh I'm going to buy this place and start a fire
Stand here until I fill all your heart's desires
Because I'm going to buy this place and see it burn
Do back the things it did to you in return
He said Oh I'm going to buy a gun and start a war
If you can tell me something worth fighting for
Oh and I'm going to buy this place, that's what I said
Blame it upon a rush of blood to the head to the head"
("A Rush of Blood to the Head", Coldplay)
All around me people are talking, waving their hands around animatedly, their feet crashing against the floor in a dull thudding motion. The glasses make clinking noises as they hit each other, greedy fingers wrapped around their cool surface and circles of condensation forming below them. I see their mouths open, I see them move, but I no longer hear any of it. It's all formed into one constant noise, irritating and never-ending.
At one time in my life, a time that seems so far away now, I would have been one of them. Surrounding by friends, laughing without a care in the world. But now I look at it all and I have to wonder why I saved it. I defeated Voldemort, but what for? We've defiled everything in this world. Years ago, something changed. Pandora's Box, Adam and Eve, call it what you will, but the fact is that we are far from the innocent creatures we might once have been. We've ruined whatever we had.
Why should I have saved something this dreadful? If I hadn't touched it, we'd all be out of our misery. Murder, rapes, bigotry. And that's just the tip of the iceberg. An iceberg that we created.
I let my head drop into my hands, elbows resting against the long table. My legs dangle freely from the barstool, and in front of me sits my glass. Scotch and Coke, more Scotch than anything. Simply put, a numbing device.
Before they speak I feel someone come up behind me. I hear her giggle and smell the scent of strong perfume. It takes everything I have left not to groan out loud and tell them to piss off; I'm not interested. But no, I won't do that, because it goes against everything Harry Potter is meant to be. Pathetic.
"Hi!" she says as I lift my head. Unfortunately, my hands have dislodged my fringe and my scar is completely visible. "Ooh," she croons, "Harry Potter. What are you doing all by yourself?"
Well, that was unexpected. People generally assume I'm waiting for somebody important because Harry Potter could not simply be sitting. No, he has much greater things to do than just be by himself, with a Scotch. In reality I have plenty of time on my hands. My closest friends, or they used to be that, have all moved on. They all have jobs, and someone. Someone that makes them forget the world, and makes time stop just for them. Someone that I'll never have, which isn't me being melodramatic. My last ten relationships have been based purely on my reputation, and they've all left sorely disappointed. I barely talk to any of them anymore.
"Just sitting," I answer, smiling in a way that I know drives them crazy. It's full of suggestion, and a little bit of promise; the last part being a complete lie, seeing I can never hold a relationship. I know I don't like her. I'm already biting my tongue, but a part of me needs someone to be close to if only for a while.
"Mind if I join you?" she asks, in what I assume is meant to be a sexy and appealing tone. It sounds more like a simpering whine, which I can't stand.
All the same, I tell her to sit and she does. Twenty minutes later my back is flush against my bed and she's on top of me, showing just how much of a slut she is. Like they all are.
I make the appropriate noises and faces, and actually manage to enjoy myself for a small amount of time. Afterwards she smiles and dresses, asking for my number. Deciding for once that I'm not going to get involved in a useless relationship I make up a fake number, hand her it and smile. I won't be seeing her again. This was never a permanent room, like the rest of them. I have to move to gain any form of privacy.
After she leaves I go to my closet and pull the few garments from it, shoving them into a plain black bag. Because I move so often I tend to leave anything that I want to keep but don't need with 'friends' and take only essential things. It makes it easy to run away from everything. To run away from myself, really, because that's who they're all after.
I know a bar not far from here with reasonable food and rooms, a little more up class than my usual haunts. It will do, at least for a while.
I walk down the stairs and skulk through the darkened area at the back, towards the door to the front desk. After paying my bill and smiling at the young cashier I head out the door and through the streets. It's late, but the bars will let you in anytime before midnight if you smile hard enough.
I don't bother with a taxi, deciding to walk to 'clear my head'. As if a simple walk could do that, but it may manage to calm me down a little. I feel guilty about the girl, but I'm accustomed to it and in the long run I will hurt her a lot less by leaving at the beginning.
With a frustrated sigh I run my hand through my hair, flattening my fringe over my forehead. A few people give me quizzical looks, tilting their head to the side as if trying to recall a long lost memory. I don't bother with worrying that they'll recognize me, because if they do remember eventually they'll be far away. My face has changed over the years, my hair even longer than usual to cover my scar more effectively. Either way, even years ago I was hardly recognized unless they saw the scar.
A young couple ahead of me, hands clenched, nearly force me onto the road as they cruise past in a world of their own. Scowling I move back to the center of the path, resolute to move for nobody. It's time that I get something for me, not Harry Potter, but for Harry.
As I round the corner I spot the glimmering lights of the next bar, green and white, and the people milling into and out of the door. It looks busy, which means I won't be noticed in the crowd. Hopefully it's not so busy that I won't be able to get a room.
A few girls move aside, giggling madly, and at least three sets of eyes flicker down my body. That's what we all are after all; just bodies, no personality attached. People don't want that bothersome aspect to mar their fantasies.
Inside I follow the signs to the desk, where a young man sits. Rather cute, too. I smile at him, brushing my fingers lightly against his as I hand him the money. Just in case I damage the room, of course. He directs me up the stairs to my room and smiles before heading back downstairs.
The room is large enough for the time being, a large double bed in the center with a few other pieces of furniture. It's a little lusher than I'm used to, but I can afford it. That is, the money my parent's left me can. There's always the money I got from all the interviews, but so far I haven't touched that.
Without bothering to unpack I head downstairs and into the bar, which is darker than usual. A few lamps above the scattered pool tables and above the long shelves of drinks are the only sources of light. A few workers are lounging behind the counter or smiling fakely at the customers. I can't blame them. It's getting late, the crowd is getting rowdier, and I'm sure they'd prefer to be anywhere but at work.
The serving area is set up in a circle, with high stools around it all. I quickly select one away from everyone else and order my drink, resting my chin on my hands. Once more I let my senses zone out until the noises are only a dull disturbance in my mind.
The woman returns with my drink, handing it to me with her fake smile. I smile back tiredly, used to this routine, and hand her the money.
The glass makes a clinking noise as I absentmindedly tap my fingertips against it before bringing it to my lips and gulping down half the glass. The woman, who is straightening the ashtrays near me, frowns and a wary glint shines in her eyes. It says quite clearly that I'll be thrown out if I cause any trouble, which apparently I look ready to do the way I'm guzzling down my drink.
Sighing, I place my glass back down on the table, on the carpeted maroon cloth that runs around it, and gaze around the room. A few people are playing pool, which is at least a pleasant noise compared to the shouting and constant talking. It's oddly calming, the thud as the cue hits the white ball, the clink as the white ball hits another, and finally the sound of victory as they succeed and sink a ball. Depending on the person it's either followed by a smug smile or a shout of victory, but I don't bother to watch them. These people come and go. I stopped caring about what was going on in their mind long ago.
My gaze continues around the room, taking in the dancing groups and couples, and the talking groups. There are a few others who sit by themselves, staring pensively into their glasses as though they hold some kind of an answer or impatiently tapping their foot. Of course, the latter are not really alone, because someone is coming for them.
My eyes eventually fall to the person nearest to me, and the person next to them, and so on. They seem to be having a great conversation, smiling broadly and only occasionally reaching for their glass as a conversation delaying technique.
Giving up this form of entertainment I return to my glass, placing it against my lower lip and pouring the golden brown liquid slowly into my mouth. As the bitter taste fills my senses and runs down my throat, calming me in a way that I can't explain, I notice a bowed blonde head. They too sit alone, starring at the maroon tablecloth and running a finger absently along their glass's rim. Something about the way they're sitting, their back straight, and their lithe form reminds me of someone from a long time ago.
I don't realize that I'm still staring until their head lifts and a pair of grey eyes locks onto mine. The next breath, usually a senseless and unthinking intake and exhale of air, catches in my throat. Even from far away I can see the sharp features of their face, and the way the strands of blonde hair hang just below their eyebrows. Even if the rest has changed and matured somehow, I could never forget those eyes.
Without thinking I find myself walking to them and standing at their side, one hand resting on the edge of the table and unintentionally close to his. Not wanting to look nervous, I leave it there. But I am nervous. Suddenly I don't know what to say, let alone why I walked over here in the first place. Somehow, I was drawn to him.
"Potter," he says slowly, not needing to see the scar to recognize me. "It's been awhile."
I nod stupidly, my mouth still clamped shut. His eyes seem to cloud over, suddenly wrenched back to a past of hostility that is somehow failing. He waves his hand towards the chair next to me and I sit down. My eyes flicker to the side and I find that my hand has snuck almost unnoticeably closer to him.
I can't help but notice how good he looks. I suppose he always has, but considering it was only after Hogwarts that I realized my attraction for males as well as females, I never noticed it. Although his features are sharp and somewhat feminine, you could never mistake him for someone weak. His eyes speak of a hidden knowledge, long fingers ready to grasp his wand and change the world forever.
"Finally defeated Voldemort. I suppose I should congratulate you." He cocks his head to the side and grins. Well, something between a grin and a smirk. I inwardly groan and feel myself shudder. It's hard to remember just who he is to me when I'm no longer the same Harry Potter I was.
I just shrug. "The rest of them have just about covered your share of congratulations." There is no vanity in my tone, and he obviously doesn't mistake it for anything of the sort. I simply sound resigned to the fact that I'm destined for congratulations for the death of one person. For killing. From all that I heard Draco never became a Death Eater and if he did there would be no way to tell. All of the marks faded after Voldemort's death and have long since disappeared entirely. Honestly, I wouldn't care if he had joined Voldemort at this moment.
He lifts his eyes to mine once more, drawing his eyebrows down and running his tongue over his upper lip. My eyes follow his movement, which doesn't go without notice. Somehow, I get the feeling that it doesn't matter that I'm Harry Potter. That to him, I'm just me. Someone he hated for years, and someone who he perhaps is beginning to understand.
I feel a hand land on my thigh and I look down to see a slender, pale hand strewn just above my knee. I flick my eyes up to meet his face, only lifting my chin a little. Without a word we both stand up and I follow him through the door, through which the stairs leading to the rooms lie. Once we go through the door he stops and looks at me, slowly walking towards me until my shoulders hit the wall. Our eyes are locked in a strange sort of battle, as though daring the other to break the barrier we built so many years ago.
Although I was the Gryffindor and he the Slytherin, he shows more bravery than I was willing to. Leaning his head towards mine he presses his lips against mine, and a surge of heat runs through my body. My arms are soon snaked around his waist, thumbs stroking his back through thin, black material. His hands are locked in my hair, possessively pulling me against him. He doesn't need to, because he has successfully pushed his body against mine in a dizzying manner and I'm locked against the wall.
Through a battle of tongues, exploring a newfound luxury, I manage to moan one simple word that makes him pull away from me. Draco. I've never called him by his name, which has evidently not gone without notice. He smirks slightly and brings his lips to my neck, laying kisses along it and across my jaw. The music from inside pounds through my veins as he begins to nibble on my earlobe.
"Upstairs?" he asks.
I nod and after one lingering kiss we walk up the stairs. He crosses the hallway over to room three, opens the door and turns to face me with a tempting, sultry smile. Not needing further instruction I follow him to the bed and collapse on it, stretched over Draco's body. His nimble fingers work their way inside my shirt and begin to stroke my stomach, before he flips me over and straddles my hips. Grabbing the hem of my shirt he pulls it over my head with only a little help and dumps it over the side of the bed. His fingers run over my nipples a few times before I find a hot mouth enclosing one of them, and hands travelling lower. I'm unable to hold back the moans and I let him do what he pleases, at least for a while. Soon, it will be my turn to explore him. Because that's what this is. An exploration of something neither of us had ever seen coming, but now that it was here we couldn't bypass it.
The next morning I wake up, naked legs entangled in his and my chin resting just above his shoulder. His chest rises and falls with his relaxed breathe and for a moment I stare at him, before running a finger down his forehead, his nose, and finally running it across his lips. He stirs slightly and tightens his grip on my waist. Smiling, a real smile with no inhibitions, I lay a kiss against his neck before settling back against his chest.
Something inside me changes, and I can feel the smile that is still playing on my lips. The world slows down to my pace, and I find myself discovering meaning in all of the troubles it brings. I've finally found my someone.
Come up to meet you, tell you I'm sorry
You don't know how lovely you are
I had to find you, tell you I need you
Tell you I set you apart
Tell me your secrets and ask me your questions
Oh let's go back to the start
Running in circles, coming up tails
Heads on a silence apart
("The Scientist", Coldplay)
Thank you for reading and not pressing the back button with a horrified look. Reviews would be fabulous, as I'm overly obsessed with them and will continiously check for them like the sad sod I am. Kisses and hugs to all of you from F4F!