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“Hermione,” Ron whispered, trying to get her attention. “What’s supposed to go in next?”

Harry snickered quietly as he overheard Ron. Seventh year of potions and Ron still had absolutely no clue as to what he was doing. Harry tuned out Hermione’s exasperation and her explanation as he continued to work on his own potion.

He had finally caught on to the concept of potions last year and he wasn’t too bad at it now. Of course, that probably had something to do with the fact that his ‘remedial potions lessons’ last year had actually included some one-on-one potions lessons with Snape.

After much apologizing, begging, pleading, and groveling (along with a direct order from Dumbledore) Snape had taken to training Harry again. Working with the bastard potions professor was far more appealing when compared to losing anyone else like he’d lost Sirius.

So between many detentions and ‘remedial potions lessons’, Harry spent a lot of time in training with Snape the previous year. Snape had started by training Harry in Occlumency, the first and foremost problem. The potions lessons got included because Harry needed to actually show improvement in the classroom if they were going to keep their cover. Go figure.

Over time they developed a truce and a decent working relationship. Harry spent many, many hours training with Snape. It all paid off when Harry finally defeated Voldemort at the end of the school year.

Now in his seventh year, he was enjoying life finally. There were still several rogue Death Eaters running loose, but they weren’t Harry’s responsibility. He was free to live his own life.

Lost in his reverie, Harry was startled when the door to the classroom slammed open. He was even more startled when he saw Dumbledore—a very angry, almost afraid Dumbledore.

“Severus, I need your assistance in the Entrance Hall,” Dumbledore commanded. Snape obviously understood the urgency radiating off the Headmaster and immediately moved to comply.

“Potter, you’re in charge. Please refrain from causing any trouble.” Snape sneered at all of his students before sweeping out of the room.

Dumbledore addressed the students. “I will be sealing you all in this room and you will be unable to leave. There is a matter of great urgency but you will be safe here.”

He turned to Harry. “You know where things are. Call for Dobby if you need assistance for any reason and I’ll get a message to you all as soon as possible.” With that said, he was gone.

After the door shut there was a bright yellow glow covering the entire room, brightest at the doorway but lighting up every wall, ceiling and even the floor. No one was in any doubt that Dumbledore had quite literally sealed them into the classroom.

Harry blinked and slowly gazed around at all of the other shocked students. He always said things happened during potions but this was getting a little extreme.

“Why did Snape put you in charge?” Pansy demanded.

Harry gave a slight shrug. He was more concerned with why they had to be locked in in the first place and had turned his gaze back to the sealed doorway.

“Why not?” Draco drawled. “Better to make Potter responsible for anything going wrong rather than one of us.” This mollified the upset Slytherins as they snickered.

Harry sent them a small, knowing smirk, but didn’t comment, causing Draco to furrow his brow in confusion. All of the Slytherins looked confused as Harry flicked his gaze across them. Seamus looked confused as well.

Harry chuckled when his gaze fell on Ron’s smug grin and Hermione’s full, knowing smile.

“What are you laughing about, Potter?” Draco demanded.

“Believe whatever makes you feel better, Malfoy,” Harry commented flippantly.

“What’s that supposed to mean?” Draco snarled.

Harry sighed. This wasn’t the time for a fight. “Nothing,” he said, backing off. “I don’t want to fight with you.”

“I want to know what you meant,” Draco demanded.

“I want to know what’s wrong and what’s so bad that we have to be locked in here,” Harry said, diverting the topic.

His diversion was successful when worried expressions broke out on the faces again. Even Draco looked concerned briefly before he let his mask fall back into place.

“Do you have any ideas?” Hermione asked.

Harry shook his head. “All I know is that things have been quiet recently, although everyone expected that was because there were plans in the works. No one knew what they were though.”

He had regular meetings with Snape and Dumbledore, where they kept Harry apprised of any situations that developed with the Death Eaters. Voldemort may be gone, but Harry was still a target.

“You really have no idea at all?” Ron asked.

Harry rolled his eyes. “I’m not a Seer, Ron. In fact, you know I’m total crap at Divination. I’ve been here, along with the rest of you, and have absolutely no idea what’s going on.”

“Well, what are we supposed to do now?” Hermione asked.

Harry looked around. Even the Slytherins seemed to be looking to Harry for an answer, though they were less obvious about it than the Gryffindors. He glanced into his cauldron.

“There’s not much we can do at the moment. For now, I guess we try to salvage our potions. Luckily we were at a long simmering stage. Snape will still expect us to complete them, emergency or not.”

That reminder seemed to help people focus. Not a soul in that room wanted to bring Snape’s wrath down upon them. They turned back to their work and chatter broke out in the room, debating different ideas about what was happening in the castle.

“Harry, do you really think we’re all right here?” Hermione asked anxiously as she stirred her cauldron.

Harry nodded. “You know as well as I do that neither Snape nor Dumbledore would leave us in a dangerous position. Besides, you saw him seal the room as well as I did.”

“Yeah, but I’ve never seen Dumbledore look so upset.” Hermione didn’t sound any less anxious.

Harry glanced at the doorway again, like he was still expecting it to give him some answers. Truth be told, he was anxious about the situation too. He wanted to know if everyone else was all right and if all the students had managed to be protected.

“I’ve seen him look that upset,” Harry admitted. “Whatever is going on is major, but I’m sure Dumbledore put the students’ safety first. It’s why we’re sealed in here. I’m sure it’ll be all right.”

Seamus and Ron at least looked reassured. If Harry said it would be okay, then things would likely be all right. “Well, what’s your theory as to what’s happening?” Ron asked.

Harry frowned. “I have no idea, to be honest. Even when everyone was afraid of Sirius and the castle had to be searched, we were at least all brought to the Great Hall and confined together.”

“Maybe they simply didn’t have time to get us all to one area,” Hermione pointed out.

“Probably.” Harry shrugged.

“Do you think it has something to do with the remaining Death Eaters?”

Harry gave her the same answer. “Probably.”

While they worked on their potions, they debated on what could really be happening. Their ideas ranged from an animagus infiltrating the school, in obvious reference to what happened third year, to an outright attack at the school.

Harry personally wasn’t satisfied with the last idea. If there had been a sudden attack, he was fairly certain Dumbledore would have asked him to help fight. He could hold his own and was better at fighting than many of the teachers. None of it really made sense.

Gradually everyone finished up their potions and sample vials were lined up neatly on Snape’s desk. Everyone was looking slightly lost as they went back to their seats when they should have been leaving class.

“This is ridiculous,” Draco finally exclaimed. “I’ve got better things to do than sitting around here with a bunch of Gryffindors.”

“Like we want to sit around with a bunch of snakes,” Ron said. Hermione put a hand on his arm, hoping to restrain him if it became necessary.

“Don’t insult snakes,” Harry said. The Slytherins snarled at what they deemed an insult. “Snakes have good qualities, too.”

Ron’s smug look flashed to incredulity as he rounded on Harry. “Are you sticking up for the Slytherins?” he sputtered.

“I didn’t say that.”

“Then you’re insulting them,” Ron said, smug look returning.

“I didn’t say that either.”

“What are you on about then?”

Heads swiveled back and forth, following the growing argument between the two Gryffindors.

Harry gave a careless shrug. “I only said that snakes have good qualities, too. I don’t remember saying anything specific regarding Slytherins.”

“It was implied, Harry!”

Harry forced himself to suppress his grin at the proud look Hermione shot Ron for understanding what implied meant. Ron very much dealt in facts, not subtle implications.

“Was it implied?” Harry asked.

“Yes!” Ron exploded. “Slytherins are snakes!”

“Oh.” Harry looked thoughtful. “Well, my answer’s still the same. Snakes have good qualities, too.”

“How can you say that?!” Ron was still shouting and turning a nice vivid shade of red in his anger and frustration.

Harry’s eyes finally narrowed dangerously. “Ron, I don’t give a fuck if you like these particular Slytherins or not. You know damn good and well that Slytherins have very useful qualities. Now back off.”

Ron was completely taken aback, but didn’t seem ready to back down. “But Harry, they’re evil.”

Harry’s nostrils flared as he glared at Ron, but Hermione cut in before Harry could say anything.

“Ron, think about why Harry was put in charge here,” Hermione snapped.

Ron stared at her for several moments before he turned to stare back at Harry sheepishly. “Sorry, Harry.”

Harry’s expression relaxed and he grinned at Ron. “No problem, mate.”

“Did Potter just defend the Slytherins?” Pansy asked plaintively, literally rubbing her eyes in confusion.

Draco’s eyes were narrowed in suspicion. “I think so.”

“He certainly wasn’t defending you, though,” Ron snarled at Draco.

“Enough already, Ron,” Harry said in exasperation. Ron dropped back into his seat with a surly expression.

“That’s twice now that it’s been questioned why you got put in charge, Potter,” Draco drawled. “What’s the real reason?”

Harry studied Draco, debating how to answer the question. “Who said you were wrong? Maybe Snape put me in charge simply because he can punish me for anything that goes wrong. It certainly makes sense.”

Draco was frowning, obviously sceptical. His gaze flicked over Ron, who was once again looking smug, then to Hermione whose expression had gone suspiciously blank, before glaring at Harry’s calm face again.

“I don’t think that’s why,” Draco said. “I think there’s more to it.”

“Maybe,” Harry said. “Not that it particularly matters because we’re all more than capable of taking care of ourselves. Besides, hopefully we won’t be stuck in here much longer anyway.”

As if his words had conjured it, there was a bright flash of flames before a golden feather and parchment dropped to the desk in front of Harry. The girls shrieked and everyone but Harry startled at the sudden appearance of flames in the classroom.

“Fawkes,” Harry breathed, snatching up the parchment.

“What the fuck was that?” Draco demanded.

Harry ignored him in favor of reading Dumbledore’s message, so Ron answered the question for everyone. He was the only other person there that had ever witnessed it before.

“That was Dumbledore’s phoenix leaving a message.”

Everyone watched Harry closely, in varying degrees of anxiety and curiosity. He skimmed over the letter quickly.

“Holy fuck!”

There was a round of, “What?!” in response, as everyone stared in alarm at Harry’s outburst. He blinked and looked around at the group of Gryffindors and Slytherins. This was not going to go over well.

He cleared his throat and began reading.

Dear Students,

First of all, everyone is unharmed. We were able to safely seal everyone into various rooms around the castle before any injuries could occur.

Unfortunately, you will all have to remain where you are for the foreseeable future. We expect that it will take at least a day or two before it will be completely safe in the castle again. Your professors will explain to you further. Be reassured that you are safe where you are.

For the time being, only the house elves will be able to reach your current locations. They will bring all of your meals to you and your professors will help to provide you with appropriate accommodations throughout this forced lockdown.

Once again, let me assure you that you are safe and all will be back to normal soon.

Albus Dumbledore

Harry stopped and looked up at his classmates surrounding him. He glanced nervously at the gobsmacked Slytherins. He wasn’t so worried about the gobsmacked Gryffindors.

“We’re locked in here for fuck knows how long with a bunch of Gryffindors?!” Draco exclaimed in outrage.

Harry nodded. No one was looking happy at all.

“We don’t have a professor here, though,” Pansy said. “Dumbledore took Snape away, so who’s supposed to explain things to us and help us out?”

“Does the letter say anything else, Harry?” Hermione asked hopefully.

Harry took a deep breath. “Yeah, that was just what he obviously wrote for all the students. There’s more written here addressed to me. Um, I was a little shocked that we’re all locked in here together and haven’t read it yet.”

“Well, hurry up then,” Draco commanded. “I’m sure he’s told you what the fuck is actually going on.” Harry glared at him briefly before turning back to the parchment.


Obviously there is no professor with your group as I needed Professor Snape’s assistance, so I’m sending this further information to you; to ease your mind and for you to explain to your classmates. I’m quite confident in your abilities and those that are locked in with you.

A special device was released in the Entrance Hall. You and a few others would compare it to a muggle bomb of sorts. Once set, it sent dangerous curses floating through the hallways like a poisonous gas—searching for victims. Hence, the reason for the continued forced isolation in sealed rooms.

As to how it came to be about, you will be pleased to know that a particular rat was involved. It seems that he was forced to be their sacrifice in this mission. Fortunately for us he has been apprehended, but unfortunately not before setting off the device. He has been questioned under veritaserum. Additional testimony has allowed us to send out the Aurors and the remaining Death Eaters have been apprehended as well. I’m sure you know what this all means, and I must say that I’m happy for you that this has finally ended.

As for the castle’s current status, it is unclear how long the castle will need to remain in lockdown. We are working on that problem and hopefully the castle will be free of danger within a couple days.

Harry, I am essentially placing you in charge at your location. Until it is safe, Professor Snape will not be able to return. The only ones able to access the sealed rooms are the house elves, as I’ve mentioned.

Please ensure that you and your classmates are provided for. Several of you are good at transfiguration and I’m sure that you will be able to meet your needs.

I will keep you posted of any further developments.


Harry let out a loud whoop of joy. “Yes! I’m free!”

“What are you on about, Potter?” Draco snapped. “I thought you just said we’re all stuck in here for at least the next day or two.”

Harry’s face took on an expression of pure malicious glee, causing many of the students to take a step back. Harry turned to face Ron and Hermione. “Scabbers has been caught.”

“Really? Finally?” Hermione breathed.

Harry simply nodded.

Ron stared for a moment before it sunk in. “It’s about fucking time,” he declared with a vicious snarl. Once again students stepped back, unsure of what was causing these two Gryffindors to act so spitefully.

“Oh, Harry, I’m so happy for you!” Hermione exclaimed, tears starting to fall down her cheeks. Harry snatched her up and spun her around.

“What is going on?” Draco demanded.

“The rest of the Death Eaters have been caught,” Harry said cheerfully.

Everyone stared at Harry, slack jawed. “You only said Scabbers,” Ron whispered.

“Scabbers was expected to be their sacrifice, but he was caught before he was killed and, under Veritaserum, he led the aurors to the rest of them,” Harry said gleefully. “Here, I’ll read it for you.”

He read the first section of the letter addressed to himself out loud to the others.

Suddenly all of the students were shouting out and cheering, both Gryffindors and Slytherins. Hugs and slaps on the back were making the rounds. Everyone was happy to hear that it was all apparently over finally.

This group of Slytherins had actively spoken out against taking the Dark Mark before Voldemort’s demise. They still weren’t popular in the school, but Harry in particular had been glad when they decided not to become junior Death Eaters.

Harry calmed down and read the rest of the letter amidst the continuing celebratory air in the room. The script changed and the rest of the letter was a note added by Snape.

“What are you grinning about now, Potter?” Draco sneered, although it wasn’t nearly as hateful as normal under the circumstances.

Harry looked over at him, and smirked. “Well, Malfoy, it appears you’re going to get your answer as to why I’m in charge after all.”

Chapter Text

“Allow me to read the additional note added by Professor Snape,” Harry said cheerfully. He had everyone’s attention once again and read the note out loud.

Potter, you are in charge of my rooms in my absence. You know where things are and you know my expectations. A few explanations may be necessary and is allowable under these favorable circumstances.

I am positive you are in a rather celebratory mood. Against my better judgment you have my permission to celebrate as you did before, but keep things under control.

Remind my Slytherins that if they are out of line they will receive their usual punishment.

One other warning. I expect you to keep your classmates from killing each other.

Professor Snape

The Slytherins looked angry and confused, and every single one of them paled with Snape’s reminder to them. Harry smirked at their reactions.

“I don’t know what he’s on about. Snape never punishes the Slytherins,” Ron said in a surly tone, not noticing the Slytherins’ reactions.

“Oh, I don’t know,” Harry said conversationally. “I’m sure there must be some way for him to torture the Slytherins.”

Every single Slytherin turned glaring eyes on Harry. “I think you know more than you should, Potter,” Draco snarled.

Harry chuckled and held his hands up in a placating manner. “Probably.”

“What is it you know, Harry?” Hermione asked curiously.

“Nothing important,” Harry said, waving her off. “I was simply passing on Snape’s message was all.”

Hermione glared at him suspiciously but Harry ignored her and continued on. “I think we need to be figuring out how we’re going to arrange things in here,” he said, glancing around the room. “We do have to sleep here after all.”

That effectively sidetracked everyone as they looked at the room and each other with horror.

“We have nothing,” Pansy wailed.

“No clothes,” Millicent said.

Pansy looked on the verge of tears. “No makeup.”

“We don’t even have a bathroom,” Hermione observed.

Harry smirked. “We do have a bathroom,” he corrected, to everyone’s astonishment.

“Where?” Draco demanded.

“That would be one of the reasons I was put in charge. Because I know where things are around here,” he said as he walked over to a side wall. Bringing out his wand and muttering an incantation, suddenly a door wavered into view in front of him.

Harry opened the door with a flourish. “Voilà! A bathroom for our use!” he declared triumphantly.

“How the fuck did you know that was there?” Draco asked as the girls went over to inspect the new room.

Harry shrugged. “It’s actually connected on the other side to Snape’s office. He added this door so I didn’t always have to troop through his office to go to the loo.”

“Merlin, Harry! Did he lock you in here or something with all those detentions you had last year?” Seamus asked in a joking manner.

Harry gave a lopsided grin. “Yeah, sometimes,” he admitted.

“You’re kidding!” Blaise exclaimed.

“Nope.” Harry shrugged. “Besides, it took less time than having to go all the way down the hall.”

“Why would he lock you in?” Draco was eyeing Harry suspiciously again.


Draco and the others nodded. “Because sometimes we’d be in here for hours working and Snape warded the room so that no one would find out what was going on,” he said, giving Draco a pointed look. “Particularly any sneaky Slytherins roaming the dungeons.”

“I resemble that remark,” Draco admitted, smirking at Harry. “But what would you be working on with Snape that would require such secrecy?”

“Ninety percent of my detentions and remedial potions lessons were actually training lessons with Snape,” Harry finally admitted.

The four Slytherins and Seamus stared at Harry in astonishment. Hermione and Ron already knew this, of course.

“How were you able to pull that off without anybody knowing?” Draco asked.

“Let’s just say I know more about sneaky Slytherins than anyone’s realized,” Harry said flippantly with a wide grin. “Maybe I’ll tell you more about it later.”

“Potter,” Draco warned.

“A good Slytherin shouldn’t reveal their secrets to just anybody. Don’t you agree?”

Draco stared at him incredulously. “What could you possibly know about being a good Slytherin?” he exclaimed. “You’re a Gryffindor, for Merlin’s sake!”

Harry grinned. “So I’m told.”

“Enough,” Hermione cut in. “We need to figure out what to do with this room if we have to live here for the next couple of days.”

“Are we going to split up by gender or houses?” Blaise asked cheerfully with a wag of his eyebrows.

Harry tried to turn his snickers into a cough, causing everyone to look at him curiously. “Um, good question,” he choked out. “Either way is fine with me.”

Hermione eyed the two Slytherin girls. “Either way is fine with me, too.”

“Are we going to have any privacy at all?” Pansy asked.

“I’d rather create a girls and a boy’s dorm,” Millicent admitted.

“Ah, you’re no fun,” Seamus teased.

Millicent snorted. “Having to room with Draco is not my idea of fun,” she retorted.

“Hey!” Draco protested as his dorm mate snickered. “And shut up, Blaise!”

Blaise sidestepped away from Draco. “Just remember, we’re all forced to share the bathroom with him,” Blaise smirked.

Pansy and Millicent groaned. “You’re right,” Millicent said with a grimace. “I suppose it doesn’t matter where we actually sleep.”

“I think we should go by houses,” Ron spoke up. “I don’t want to have to sleep near that vain git.”

“I don’t want to sleep near you either,” Draco spat in disgust.

“Stop!” Harry yelled. He turned to the three girls. “Are you three willing to share space?”

Hermione, Pansy, and Millicent exchanged wary glances before they all nodded their agreement.

“Fine,” Harry said decisively. “We’ll partition off three areas then. That way we can keep the combatants separated,” he added with a glare directed at both Draco and Ron.

He glanced around the room. “How about we set up boys’ dorms on either side of the room, a girl’s dorm in the middle and a common room as such at the front of the room?”

“Blaise and I can transfigure desks into beds. I’m not leaving my comfort up to Gryffindors,” Draco sneered.

Harry ignored the tone. “Sounds great. Ron, Seamus and I can set up partition walls to separate the areas.”

“Yeah, I’m used to making do with space,” Ron muttered so only Harry could hear him. Harry shot him a glance, but otherwise ignored him, too.

“Us girls can work on a common room then,” Pansy said. Hermione and Millicent nodded in agreement.

Everyone got to work, each group working companionably enough together, even the girls. The groups kept an eye on each other’s progress, but surprisingly enough no one protested any one else’s work.

Draco and Blaise took eight of the workbenches and levitated them into place before transfiguring them into a four poster bed with luxurious bedding for each of them. Ron in particular goggled when he saw the results of the first bed.

Harry and Ron knew a partitioning spell that Mrs. Weasley had taught them. It had come in handy when things got even more crowded at the burrow. They started by splitting the classroom down the middle, separating their dorms from their common room. Two partitions in the back section effectively split it into three dorm rooms. Seamus got put in charge of adding doors.

The girls transfigured one of the work benches into a circular dining table for them set off to one side. Stools were transfigured into more comfortable dining chairs. Other stools were transfigured into comfortable armchairs, which they situated around the fireplace located behind where Snape’s desk usually sat.

No one dared to transfigure Snape’s desk, but they did levitate it off to the far corner of the room. A couple of work benches made comfortable couches, finishing off their seating area. A few more stools were sacrificed to create a table for chess flanked by comfortable chairs.

Harry wasn’t sure how the girls did it, but they also managed to create a plush carpet for the whole area. The boys were in their newly created dorms and when they came out again, there was black, wall-to-wall, sink-your-feet-in carpet.

Their new common room was a contrast of black and white with accents in shades of purple. On initial appearance it seemed stark, but there was no question that there was not a bit of red or green in sight. The dining table was done in a beautiful white oak and Harry had to admit that it looked good against the black carpet. The vase of colorful flowers in the center of the table added a nice splash of color.

“Wow, you girls did an amazing job in here,” Harry praised them.

“Wicked!” Ron exclaimed, stepping out into the room.

“This is quite classy,” Draco drawled.

Blaise and Seamus each showed their appreciation by running across the room and flopping themselves onto the two couches, grinning all the while.

The girls were all beaming under the praise.

“We wanted something that we could all live with for the next couple of days,” Hermione explained.

“And you can never go wrong with black and white,” Pansy added with a grin.

Harry simply stood there looking around. “I can’t believe this was the potions classroom just a little while ago,” he said in awe. “And we’ve still got an hour to go before dinner.”

Everyone found a place to sit and make themselves comfortable. “So what do we do about clothes and such?” Millicent asked.

“Yeah, they can’t expect us to stay in what we’re wearing the whole time,” Draco said in disgust, picking at his clothes.

Harry rolled his eyes and did a rapid double snap. Two seconds later Dobby was standing in front of him.

“Oh, Harry Potter, sir. How happy I is to see you!” Dobby squealed.

“Hello Dobby,” Harry said with a smile. “I suppose you are extra busy today with everything going on.”

“Yes, yes I is, Harry Potter, but I is willing to do whatever you ask,” Dobby said in his joyfully high-pitched voice.

“Dobby, I know you’ve got things to do with dinner right now, but I was hoping you could bring us all some of our clothes and toiletries afterwards.”

“Of course, Harry Potter. I would be more than happy to,” Dobby beamed.

“Dobby?” Draco asked with a frown, scrutinizing the house elf buried under his hats, down to the mismatched socks on his feet.

Dobby turned quick as lightening and yelped when he saw Draco. “Master Draco!” he squeaked, his already wide eyes opening even wider. He went to move to the stone wall nearby and Harry jumped up and snagged Dobby before he could start banging his head on the wall.

“Dobby!” Harry said sharply. “He’s not your master any more so there’s no need to harm yourself.”

Dobby stood there fidgeting, obviously fearful of Draco.

“So he is our old house elf?” Draco asked, tilting his head in curiosity.

“Yes, Master Draco, it is I, Dobby,” Dobby squeaked out.

“How’d you end up here?” Draco asked in confusion.

Harry spoke up. “Dobby you can go and I’ll explain it to him,” he said gently. “I know you’re busy.” Dobby disappeared immediately.

“Merlin, Malfoy! He told me he was used to receiving death threats five times a day, but I didn’t think you were the one hurting him,” Harry said in agitation.

“It wasn’t me,” Draco denied indignantly. “I ordered him around, but I never actually hurt him.”

Hermione was glaring daggers at Draco and looked like she was about ready to lay into him for his mistreatment of house elves. Harry held up a hand and stopped her before she could start. “We are NOT dealing with SPEW right now, Hermione.”

She turned her dagger eyes on him. “It’s wrong and you know it, Harry.”

“Hermione, will you at least let me try to figure this out first before you lay into him?” Harry snapped.

“Yeah, Hermione,” Ron pleaded. “I’m all for chewing out Malfoy, but Merlin, I don’t feel like hearing you go off again.”

Hermione flopped back into her chair and crossed her arms over her chest, muttering about idiot boys and continuing to glare daggers at them all. Harry and Ron exchanged a glance and rolled their eyes practically in unison.

Harry turned back to face Draco, who was staring at the three of them wide-eyed. It wasn’t exactly the norm for Ron to stick up for Draco, even if it was in a backhanded manner. Draco opened his mouth to speak and Harry shot him a warning glare. Draco wisely shut his mouth again.

“I gather Dobby is simply afraid of your whole family,” Harry said evenly. He explained how Dobby had tried to help him second year and how he’d successfully freed Dobby from Lucius at the end of the year.

Draco swallowed. “Um, my father was always rather harsh with the house elves,” he admitted quietly. “Honestly, I never had a need to threaten him or the other house elves because they were already cowed by my father.”

“Well, I said I didn’t think it was you,” Harry said, causing Draco as well as the others to look at him curiously.

“You really didn’t think Malfoy was the one hurting Dobby?” Hermione asked, her curiosity overcoming her anger.

“Not Draco, no,” Harry said, shaking his head. “Lucius Malfoy on the other hand is one evil, sadistic bastard,” he said, his expression turning dark.

Ron blinked. “And Malfoy’s not?” he asked incredulously, indicating the Malfoy in the room with them.

“Nope, he’s a bastard but he’s not evil and sadistic,” Harry retorted.

It was Draco’s turn to blink before his expression formed into a smirk. “Gee, thanks for the vote of confidence, Potter.”

Harry returned the smirk. “Glad to oblige, Malfoy.”

“This whole situation is a bit surreal.” Seamus sounded completely bemused by all the interactions.

Harry gave him a wicked grin. “Just wait until later,” he said with a mischievous twinkle in his eyes.

“What’s later?” Seamus asked.

“You’ll see,” Harry smirked. “I still intend to celebrate tonight after dinner, since for the first time in my life I’m truly free.”

Ron and Hermione turned wide-eyed. “Like after you defeated You-Know-Who?” Ron squeaked.

Harry got a wide grin and nodded.

“Harry, you wouldn’t want to do that with Slytherins around, and in Snape’s classroom of all places,” Hermione admonished.

Ron glanced around the room. “Not that you could do it anyway,” he said ruefully.

Harry’s grin didn’t falter. “Didn’t you hear that Snape gave me permission to celebrate?”

Ron’s eyes grew wide as saucers. “Snape’s the one that gave them to you?”

Harry nodded.

Ron gulped. “I thought it must’ve been Fred and George.”

“Harry.” Hermione was blinking furiously. “You can’t be serious. He’d never do that.”

“Believe whatever makes you feel better,” Harry said with a casual shrug.

A loud pop announced Dobby’s arrival with their dinner. Harry was impressed. He was getting good at diverting everyone’s attention, and Dobby was helping without even knowing.

Harry had a smile gracing his face as he walked over to the dining table where Dobby was setting out dishes from an impossible large stack that he held. Harry was absolutely positive Dobby couldn’t have held them all without magic.

“Thanks, Dobby. It all smells delicious,” Harry said, smiling appreciatively.

“You’re most welcome, Harry Potter, sir. I’ll be back soon with the items you requested,” he squeaked before he popped back out.

Harry frowned at the spot where Dobby had been. Dobby could be annoying with his exuberance sometimes, but Harry didn’t particularly like this Dobby. Harry’s frown deepened as he realized that Dobby was now behaving like the servant he was trained to be.

Draco touched Harry’s arm to get his attention, causing Harry to start before arching an eyebrow in question. The others were all settling into their seats, although Hermione was eyeing the two of them.

“Stop him next time and I’ll talk to him,” Draco said. “He should know I’m not my father.”

Harry nodded in acceptance. “You already know that, don’t you, Potter?” Draco asked, his voice quiet so that it didn’t carry to the others.

Harry smiled slightly this time as he nodded. “Yeah, I do,” he said softly.

“Not many people seem to realize that I’m not my father,” Draco commented bitterly.

“Come on and let’s eat before Ron eats it all,” Harry said, attempting to lighten the mood.

Draco sighed and stepped over to the table with Harry where they took their seats. Dinner was slightly strained with four Slytherins and four Gryffindors eating at the same table. Harry and Blaise, along with Seamus and Millicent, seemed to be buffers between the others. Ron and Draco particularly needed to be kept separate and they all recognized that.

Dobby reappeared when they were done and Harry stopped him before he could disappear with the dinner dishes. Harry waved everyone else off so Draco could talk to Dobby. Harry stayed, though, and kept a reassuring, and restraining, hand on Dobby’s arm.

Harry listened as Draco explained to Dobby that he wasn’t his father and he meant Dobby no harm. With Harry backing Draco, Dobby seemed to accept it, saying how kind Harry Potter was to everyone. Draco and Harry exchanged amused glances, both of them rolling their eyes as Dobby turned back into his over-exuberant self.

Minutes later, everyone was flopped in the furniture arranged around the fireplace.

“So Harry, it’s later now,” Seamus said casually.

“Is it now?” Harry smirked.

“It is,” Seamus nodded. “And it’s particularly boring around here,” he added.

“That it is,” Harry said, looking around. “So does anybody have any ideas of what we could do?”

“Oh come off it, Potter,” Draco snapped impatiently. “You know there isn’t a damn thing for us to do in here except make potions. Much as I like potions, I don’t particularly feel like working with them every moment of the day like Snape.”

“Ah, perhaps I should go get some things from Snape’s office then,” Harry said. “I admit I did want to celebrate this evening.”

“You can’t get in there,” Draco snapped. “We’ve already tried.”

“Hmmm,” Harry murmured, as he got up and wandered over to the office door. “Perhaps you just didn’t know the correct password.” With a soft mutter, Snape’s office door swung open and Harry turned back to gaze upon seven gobsmacked students.

Chapter Text

Harry snickered at their shocked expressions. “I’ll be right back,” he said before he disappeared into Snape’s office, shutting the door behind him. He didn’t think any of them realized that Snape had an amplification spell on the classroom, and he could still hear their voices as he went to the hidden liquor cabinet.

“Did Potter just go into Snape’s private office?” Draco asked, sounding completely shocked.

“He did,” Blaise confirmed.

“How’d he know the password?” Seamus asked, sounding dazed. “Everyone knows that Snape hates Harry. He would never give his password to him.”

“Well, that’s just it. Snape doesn’t actually hate Harry anymore,” Ron admitted. Harry could easily visualize the twisted expression that always seemed to cross Ron’s face when he contemplated Harry’s working relationship with Snape.

“But they act the same as always,” Pansy protested.

“Yeah, but it’s all been just an act since sometime last year.”

“Somewhere along the line with all that training, they finally learned to trust and respect each other,” Hermione explained. “I don’t know if I’d call them friends exactly—more like colleagues, I suppose.”

“So this would really be why Snape put Potter in charge,” Draco commented thoughtfully. “He taught Potter everything he knows.”

“I don’t know about everything,” Hermione said. “But he did teach Harry an awful lot.”

“Enough to defeat the Dark Lord,” Millicent pointed out.

“Yes,” Hermione agreed.

The group was silent for a couple of minutes and Harry went back to gathering bottles of liquor and eight glasses. Stacking the glasses and gathering up the bottles, he was making his way back across the room when he heard voices again.

“I think they just might be more friends than I realized,” Hermione said.

“Why do you say that?” Millicent asked curiously.

Harry could hear Ron snort. “Because Snape supplied him with liquor after he defeated you-know-who last spring.”

Harry could hear a jumble of exclamations generated from Ron’s comment.

“It seems to be true,” Hermione admitted.

“That’s what had you two so shocked before dinner,” Draco said in realization.

“Harry came back with a few bottles of liquor a couple nights after he was finally released from the hospital wing,” Ron was explaining.

Harry had to wonder if Ron realized that he was having a civil conversation with Draco. Possibly not, if he was still in shock over Harry disappearing into Snape’s office.

“All this time I thought he got them from Fred and George,” Ron continued. “We ended up having our own private celebration up in our dorm.”

“Yeah, that was quite a night,” Seamus said dreamily. Harry snorted quietly. Seamus obviously remembered more from that night that certain other people.

“What do you think he’s doing in there?” Pansy asked. “Do you think he’s really getting liquor?”

“Nah, he’s probably wanking,” Blaise said, his voice full of amusement. Harry snorted again. Blaise would think that.

“Zabini!” Hermione sounded offended by the idea. Either that or she was just shocked that he’d said it. Harry wasn’t sure which, since he couldn’t see her face.

“What? Did Blaise upset your delicate Gryffindor sensibilities?” Harry could easily hear the sneer in Draco’s voice.

This seemed to offend Seamus. “Hey, we’re not all sensitive!” he exclaimed. “Besides, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was true.” His voice was as full of amusement as Blaise’s had been.

Harry decided it was about time he reappeared, so he sauntered out of Snape’s office into their temporary common room. “If I had wanted to get off, I wouldn’t have gone in there alone.”

Jaws dropped as they stared at Harry. “In Snape’s office?” Blaise choked out.

Harry shrugged carelessly, that easy roll of his shoulders that he always did. He didn’t answer otherwise as he started laying out the bottles and glasses on the table.

“Come pick your poison. If you want to drink though, you have to play.”

No one moved.

“I can’t believe you took liquor from Snape’s office,” Pansy said in awe.

Harry smirked at her. “Snape gave me permission in that note earlier.”

“No he didn’t,” she said, her brow furrowed as she tried to remember.

“Sure he did. ‘Against my better judgment you have my permission to celebrate as you did before, but keep things under control.’” Harry imitated Snape’s sneering tone fairly accurately. He had spent an awful lot of time listening to that sneer, especially over the last year.

“Oh, Merlin!” Hermione exclaimed. “He did give you permission, didn’t he?”

Harry gave her a wicked grin, which was answer enough. He turned the tables and asked his own question. “So are you going to join me in celebrating tonight?”

“You want to get drunk with the Slytherins?” she squeaked.

Harry rolled his eyes. “Sure, why not?” He shifted his gaze around to include all of them.

“I’m celebrating tonight because I’m officially done fighting. I’m done with it,” Harry declared. “I am finally free to just be me.”

Draco snorted. “And who are you, Potter? Are you trying to say you’re not what you appear to be?”

“Oh no, I’m definitely not all I appear to be on the surface,” Harry answered. He walked over to where everyone was still sitting in front of the fire and plopped down on the couch between Blaise and Seamus.

“I already know you,” Ron whinged. “Let’s go get drunk.”

“Uh, Ron, you don’t exactly know everything about me,” Harry said, effectively catching everyone’s attention. “I’ve kind of been afraid of telling you something, but I suppose now is as good a time as any,” he said nervously, his gaze flicking around to the other members of the room.

Ron sat up and stared at his friend in concern. “You know you can tell me anything.”

Harry snorted. “No, I don’t know that. I figure I need to tell you before you start drinking because this just might make you turn around and start puking.”

Draco twisted his face in disgust. “Ewww! Thanks for the mental imagery, Potter.”

Harry chuckled. “Sorry,” he said, but he didn’t sound one bit repentant.

“What’s this about that could be that bad?” Ron asked.

“It’s not so stigmatized in the Wizarding world, Harry,” Hermione said calmly.

Harry whipped his head around to stare at her wide-eyed. “You know?” he asked in astonishment.

She huffed and rolled her eyes. “I’m with you all the time. Yes, I finally noticed that you and I tend to look in the same direction a lot.”

Harry chuckled and shook his head. “I should have known you’d figure it out.”

“Figure what out?” Ron asked.

Harry ignored him for the moment as he narrowed his eyes, studying Hermione. “I bet you don’t know who.”

Hermione blinked. “There’s a specific who?” she asked in surprise.

All eyes were riveted on Harry for his answer. Everyone but the clueless Ron had figured out what Harry intended to tell him. Harry’s face slid into a gleeful smirk and his eyes were sparkling mischievously. “Maybe.”

“What are you on about now?” Ron demanded.

“I’m gay, Ron,” Harry said bluntly.

It was Ron’s turn to blink. It seemed that’s all he was able to do and the rest of his body was frozen in place. He blinked a couple more times as everyone waited for his reaction.

“I’m shocked as hell,” he finally said, “but I suppose I’m okay with it. It shouldn’t make a bit of difference as long as you’re comfortable with it.”

Harry wasn’t the only one to breathe a sigh of relief. “Good,” he said simply.

“So who is this ‘who’ you were talking about?” Ron asked somewhat hesitantly.

“Are you sure you want to know the answer to that?” Harry asked. “Because there’s not a single person I’ve shagged that you’re going to be happy with.”

Ron gulped. “You’ve shagged more than one person?”

A casual shrug. “Yes, although it’s always been just fun and I’ve never been seriously involved with anyone.”

“Who?” Ron whispered.

Harry couldn’t keep the wicked grin off his face. Ron may get sick but Harry was going to enjoy this. Harry turned and arched a brow at Seamus. Seamus grinned and leaned over to kiss Harry. Not a particularly deep kiss, but definitely with tongue.

“Mmmm, I remember you,” Harry murmured.

Seamus grinned again and sat back with a smug expression.

Everyone’s eyes were wide and Ron’s looked like they were about ready to pop out of his head.

“You buggered Seamus?” Ron choked.

“Mmmm hmmm,” Harry admitted. “Actually, he was my first. I didn’t want to die a virgin and Seamus willingly stepped in to aid me in my predicament,” he said dramatically.

Seamus snickered. “We had fun even if we didn’t have a clue as to what we were doing at first.”

Everyone but Ron laughed. “Hey, we eventually got the hang of it!” Harry protested, still chuckling.

“You did this in our dorm?” Ron squeaked.

Harry nodded. “Oh yes, several times. We were easily available to each other.”

“Oh, Merlin,” Ron moaned. “There’s no way I can sleep in that makeshift dorm tonight with just you two.”

Harry and Seamus snickered. Harry reached over and patted Ron’s hand. “It’s all right, Ron. Neither one of us are going to jump you.”

Laughter burst forth when Ron snatched his hand back like it’d been set on fire. He was examining it like it might have cooties now. Harry doubled over, clutching his stomach as tears rolled down his face.

“It’s not funny!” Ron snapped.

“Yes, it is,” Seamus gasped out.

Harry made an effort to sober up and wiped the tears from his face with his sleeve. He sniffled before speaking again. “So. Do you still want to hear who the others are?”

“I do,” Blaise answered immediately.

“I’m curious, too,” Hermione admitted, glancing askance between Harry and Seamus. “I never would’ve guessed. You hid it very well, even from me.”

Harry shrugged. “No one guessed. All the boy-who-lived crap and all. I didn’t particularly feel like dealing with the bad publicity that I’d likely get. I’m not ashamed, just tired of being in the spotlight. It’s all finally over though, and I don’t particularly care anymore. I get to be me.”

Ron sighed heavily. “All right, who else?” he asked, sounding like the question was being forced out of his mouth.

Harry studied Ron for a moment. “Fred, George, and Bill,” Harry admitted. “But only Fred and George at the same time,” he added quickly, as Ron turned a vile shade of green.

Ron swiftly dropped his head between his knees, but even Hermione left him to his own devices for the moment, focusing instead on Harry.

“Wow!” Seamus sounded impressed. “Two at the same time.”

“Over the summer I learned that they literally do everything together,” Harry smirked.

“Harry!” Hermione exclaimed. “That’s just . . . just not right,” she finished weakly.

Harry waggled his eyebrows. “I don’t know about that, but I sure had a good time.”

“I can’t believe you slept with three of the Weasleys,” Draco sneered. Despite the sneer, Harry could see the amusement shining in his eyes.

“Hey,” Harry defended playfully. “I learned that people tend to name them fiery redheads for a reason—they’re hot in bed!”

All eyes swiveled to Ron with a new appreciation in their eyes. Ron slowly lifted his head up to stare wide-eyed around at all the eyes focused on him.

Harry winked at him. “See, I don’t even like you that way, but you’ve just gained yourself a new reputation for being good in bed.”

Ron rolled his eyes. “Gee thanks, Harry. I’m afraid I may have to scrub out my brain later after hearing all this, but I appreciate the help,” he said sarcastically.

The sound of snickering rounded the group. “Personally, I’m finding this quite fascinating,” Draco drawled and there were murmurs and nods of agreement. “So, who else?”

“Well, there’s only one other,” Harry said. Not a one missed Blaise sitting up straighter on the other side of him. Astonished gazes swiveled between the two boys.

“You’re kidding,” Pansy whispered.

“He’s a Slytherin,” Hermione whispered just as quietly.

Millicent was speaking softly as well. “He’s a Gryffindor.”

Harry slowly turned to Blaise. “Shall we?” he purred.

Blaise nodded eagerly and Harry pulled him closer. Blaise’s fingers were quickly tangled in Harry’s hair as they shared a fairly passionate kiss. They pulled away panting. Harry turned glazed eyes to the others and found several pairs of just-as-glazed eyes staring back at him. The only real exception, of course, was Ron.

Harry blinked a couple of times to clear the lust, then chuckled. “It’s only sex, people.”

“It didn’t look that hot when you kissed Seamus,” Hermione declared.

“I’m sure it didn’t,” Seamus answered with a laugh. “Harry and I were more convenient than compatible.”

Draco was still looking slightly dazed. “You and Blaise certainly aren’t convenient, considering that you’re a Gryffindor and he’s a Slytherin. Does that mean you’re compatible?”

Harry and Blaise exchanged a glance. Harry gestured with his hand for Blaise to go ahead and answer. “Neither really. Our bodies are compatible enough,” Blaise admitted with a smirk.

“But Blaise is more into girls and really fancies someone else,” Harry said.

“You fancy someone too, but just won’t tell me who it is,” Blaise retorted.

“And I’m not going to either,” Harry returned.

“But I told you,” Blaise whinged.

“So, that’s your problem, not mine,” Harry said smugly.

Heads were swiveling back and forth avidly, attempting to miss nothing of this exchange.

“You know why I told you,” Blaise retorted.

Harry fluttered his lashes. “Because it’s really me you love?”

Blaise snorted, causing Harry’s innocent expression to crack into a grin. “Okay, so that must not be it,” Harry said.

“Not even close,” Blaise said wryly.

Harry turned serious and gazed sympathetically at Blaise. “I think it’ll happen. You’re getting a chance.”

Blaise sighed. “You know as well as I do why it won’t happen.”

“It’s possible. We happened.”

“Yeah, but we’re not even together,” Blaise retorted. “Besides, you’re a boy,”

Harry raised his eyebrows. “I’m glad you noticed,” he said, causing a round of chuckles.

Blaise rolled his eyes. “You know what I mean.”

“Yeah, I do actually, and I still think you’ve got a chance,” Harry insisted. “I know you want to get to know her better first and make sure she doesn’t think it’s just about the sex. It’s more important to girls than boys I think.”

“That’s what I meant when I said you were a boy,” Blaise admitted. “Two boys, whether they love each other or not, wouldn’t be nearly as hesitant to jump into bed together immediately.”

“So it’s back to the fact that a girl would want to get to know you first and wouldn’t just hop into bed with you to have sex.”

Draco snorted. “Some do,” he said with a wry grin.

“But not usually the ones that matter,” Blaise said with a sad smile.

“No, I suppose not,” Draco agreed quietly.

The three girls were listening with interest and were surprised that the boys seemed to have it figured out fairly well.

Harry wrapped an arm around Blaise’s shoulders and pulled him close. Blaise dropped his head on Harry’s shoulder. “The ones that matter, you don’t even want to take to bed immediately because you want them to love you first,” Blaise said softly.

Harry spluttered. “That’s so not true! I’ve been dreaming for months about making love with the person I fancy. If I had the opportunity, I’d take it in a heartbeat.”

Blaise lifted his head so he could look at Harry. “Did you hear what you just said?” Blaise asked. Harry looked at him in confusion.

Hermione answered for him. “You just said you’ve been dreaming about making love rather than having sex,” she said softly, pointing out the distinction to Harry.

“Yeah, well, I’d rather they loved me, but I’d have sex with them regardless if they offered,” Harry said somewhat petulantly. “It’s one of the advantages of fancying a boy rather than a girl.”

The others chuckled at Harry’s attitude.

Blaise dropped his head back to Harry’s shoulder and Harry rested his cheek atop Blaise’s head. Both boys released soft sighs, their eyes closed.

“Boy, you two have it bad, don’t you?” Seamus said.

They both opened their eyes and gave half shrugs with their free shoulders.

“So, are you two together or not?” Ron asked, totally bewildered.

“No, Weasley, they’re not,” Draco retorted.

“But they look like they are,” Ron pointed out.

“They’re both in love with someone else and have basically just been using each other for comfort,” Hermione explained.

“By having sex with each other?” Ron twisted his face up in confusion.

“Yes, partly by having sex,” Draco drawled. “Having sex with each other would at least help to relieve the sexual tension from not being able to be with the ones they actually love.”

Ron blinked. “Oh.”

Seamus snickered. “Is that why you tend to be more wound up than Harry lately?” he asked. “Because Harry’s at least relieving some of the sexual tension he’s feeling and you’re not?”

Ron flushed a vivid red. “It’s harder with girls.”

Blaise busted out laughing. “Um, no, actually it’s harder with boys,” he choked out.

Amidst the laughter, Ron was turning a darker red. “You know what I meant.”

“I’m sorry for laughing at you, Ron,” Harry said in apology as he calmed down. “We were only teasing. And I don’t care if it’s a girl or a boy actually, love and sex is tough to figure out.”

Everyone in the room sighed heavily.

“How’d you two get to be friends anyway?” Millicent asked Harry and Blaise curiously. Her question snagged everyone’s attention again and they perked up to hear the answer.

“Blaise caught me leaving Snape’s private chambers one evening early this year and tried to blackmail me,” Harry said with a wicked grin.

“Yeah, then he turns the tables on me and molests me in the hallway,” Blaise said in obvious amusement.

“Hey!” Harry protested. “You accused me of propositioning Snape so I was simply showing you what a real proposition was.”

“You didn’t?!” Hermione exclaimed.

Blaise nodded. “He did. And then he got me all hot and bothered, made sure I was begging for it, and made it clear that it was me he wanted to fuck, not Snape. Then he stopped abruptly and told me that if I dared to say anything about Snape, that he’d tell everyone that I had sex with the Golden Boy. He gave me a time and place to meet him later that night then he simply walked away. Leaving me extremely frustrated, I might add.”

“Is that true?” Ron asked, his eyebrows raised practically to his hairline.

Harry smirked and nodded.

“My, how very Slytherin of you,” Draco drawled.

“It gets better,” Blaise said. “I figured I’d get my fuck then spread the rumors the next day anyway. It would be far more damaging for Harry to be propositioning the potions professor than a rumor of me shagging one of the hottest boys in school. Besides, I didn’t figure the Gryffindor Golden Boy would follow through on his threat anyway. It would just be even more damaging to his reputation.”

“Makes sense,” Draco said, his eyes narrowed as he tried to figure out what happened.

“Yeah, I thought it was a nice Slytherin plan,” Blaise said, causing Harry to snicker beside him.

“Well, what happened then?” Pansy asked impatiently.

“He shags me silly until I’m completely exhausted. I’m feeling extremely satisfied right about then and that’s when he shows me a couple of pictures of us shagging that he’d managed to take somehow. I still have no idea how he did it, to be honest. He said I had a choice. Start the rumors flying and he’d share the pictures with everyone, or keep my mouth shut and we could arrange to meet again. It wasn’t exactly a difficult decision at that point.” Blaise smiled wryly. “We ended up being good friends,” he finished with a shrug.

The other three Slytherins were staring at Harry in shock. “You behaved more Slytherin than the Slytherin,” Millicent finally said.

“I can’t believe you out manipulated him,” Draco said in a dazed tone.

Harry was smirking and enjoying this immensely. “I did say earlier today that I knew a fair amount about sneaky Slytherins.”

“You also argued with me about Slytherins having good qualities. I thought you were talking about Snape,” Ron accused, suddenly remembering.

“I was—partly,” Harry admitted. “Snape does have some very good qualities and he’s the Head of House for Slytherin. The man has taught me a lot. However,” he got a sly grin, “I didn’t admit that I know about Slytherin qualities in a more personal manner, as you’ve now learned.”

“Hey, weren’t we going to play a game,” Harry said suddenly. The others blinked and nodded. They’d forgotten all about it over the last hour or so learning about Harry’s sexual exploits.

“Come on,” he said, getting up from the couch and heading back to the table where the liquor was still sitting there waiting with the empty glasses.

Chapter Text

“So are you willing to celebrate with me now and get drunk, even with the Slytherins here?” Harry asked Hermione as they all made their way to the table.

“You’re obviously quite comfortable with them,” Hermione said wryly, “since you just informed all of us of your sexual partners. If you can do that comfortably when you’re dead sober, somehow I’m not too worried about you embarrassing yourself when you’re drunk.”

Harry laughed. “But what about you? Aren’t you worried about embarrassing yourself?”

Hermione looked around at each person. Ron had managed to survive Harry’s revelations so far and he appeared to be comfortable enough sitting at the table. He was looking a little wary of the situation but the lure of getting drunk seemed to be appealing despite the presence of the Slytherins. If Ron could handle it, then Hermione certainly could.

There was an empty chair next to him left open for her, and then Seamus was next. He was grinning like a maniac across the table at Blaise. He obviously had no qualms about drinking with the Slytherins. Seamus was comfortable with just about everyone these days.

Millicent was sitting on the other side of Seamus. She’d changed a lot over the years. Hermione realized with a start that although she was still tall, she’d actually become a quite pretty young woman. She didn’t look wary of the situation like Ron, but she was eyeing the bottles of liquor in anticipation like he was.

Pansy was sitting next to her best friend, and looked downright eager to get started. She was quite relaxed and seemed to be looking forward to learning some more about the Gryffindors. She was currently eyeing Seamus with a speculative air.

Draco was eyeing Harry with that same thoughtful expression. He didn’t have the maliciousness about him that he usually did though. As Hermione watched him for a moment, Draco would flick his gaze from Harry to Blaise then back again. Draco seemed to be intrigued with the revelations about the alleged Golden Boy. He certainly didn’t seem to be concerned about drinking with the Gryffindors, and he hadn’t condemned his friend for shagging Harry and making friends with him. Maybe he wasn’t a complete bastard after all.

Blaise was sitting next to Draco and he was sprawled in his chair, tipping it back on two legs and returning Seamus’ grin. Hermione snorted softly. Those two were bonding over their shared experience of shagging Harry. They clearly didn’t have a problem and both Blaise and Seamus had been completely unselfconscious about sharing. Blaise, in particular, looked happy that things were out in the open.

Hermione turned to look at Harry, who was still standing next to her, patiently waiting. He was being more relaxed and open than she’d ever seen him. He had an air of self-confidence about him that she hadn’t really known he possessed outside of battle mode. But then, he’d been pretty much in battle mode since she’d met him. Harry was right; this was a new start for him and she wasn’t going to deny him. Maybe this could be a fresh start for her and the others as well.

Harry watched Hermione as she watched the others. He could practically hear the thoughts running through her head and he could see when she made the decision to relax and join him in his celebration. He gave her a huge grin then took his seat between Blaise and Ron as she slid in between Ron and Seamus. They were in the same arrangement as they were at dinner, since it still didn’t seem prudent to have Ron near Draco and vice versa.

“So Harry, what are we playing?” Blaise asked eagerly. The others looked a little startled at Blaise using Harry’s first name.

Harry grinned. “I want to play ‘I Never’. It’s a fun game and I think it’ll help us all get to know each other.”

“Might as well,” Pansy said. “We’re still stuck in here together for awhile.”

“Somehow I don’t think this is quite what Dumbledore has meant when he talks about the houses uniting and getting along,” Hermione pointed out with a wry smile.

“Yeah, but it should prove to be a hell of a lot more fun,” Draco drawled.

“Oh yeah,” Seamus grinned. “Harry’s a blast when he’s drunk.”

“Bloody Hell!” Ron exclaimed. “You two were getting it on that night we celebrated, weren’t you?”

Seamus grinned without apology. “The girls ducked out to get back to their own rooms and the rest of you all passed out. Didn’t even need to worry so much about silencing charms that night.”

Ron and Hermione were staring at Seamus and Harry laughed. “I’m not sure I could’ve successfully put up a silencing charm by that point. I was pretty messed up.”

“You may or may not have been able to perform magic, but your performance in other areas was perfectly fine,” Seamus leered.

“Seamus, I really didn’t need to hear that,” Ron snapped.

Harry laughed. “Have you guys ever played ‘I Never’?” he asked the Slytherins. He knew the Gryffindors had, even though their games had always been fairly tame. The Slytherins shook their heads.

“Okay, well everyone pick what you want to drink tonight, fill your glass, but don’t drink yet,” he said. He himself snagged a bottle of scotch and poured himself a shot. There was also Firewhiskey and a peach brandy to choose from. The girls each chose the brandy, Draco poured a shot of the scotch, and Blaise, Ron and Seamus jumped on the Firewhiskey.

As they poured, Harry attempted to explain the game. “We’ll go around the table taking turns making an ‘I Never’ statement. If you’ve never done whatever it is, then you do nothing. If you have done it, then you have to drink. For example, if I said ‘I Never kissed a boy’ you know damn good and well that Seamus, Blaise and I would be chugging our shot while Ron would be pushing his away.” Harry laughed, even Ron laughing with the others.

“Everyone understand?” he asked, and received nods in return. “Okay, I’ll start. We should probably start light. It’ll get easier the drunker we get.” Harry paused, thinking about what to say. “Um, I never knew I was a wizard until I got my Hogwarts letter.” Everyone but Harry and Hermione, of course, took their drink.

All the Slytherins were staring in shock. “We knew about Granger, but you had to have known,” Pansy said to Harry.

Harry shook his head mock mournfully. “Nope, I didn’t have a clue. In fact, Hagrid had to track my relatives down just to give me my letter.”

“I always thought . . . ,” Draco said, trailing off.

Harry smirked. “That’s why I like this game. You get to learn things about people that you might not have ever known. Now it’s your turn, Ron,” he said, moving things along.

“Erm, I’ve never had a pet who turned out to be a Death Eater,” Ron said wryly.

“I’ve never, but I’ll drink to that anyway,” Harry proclaimed. “That is the reason we’re celebrating after all.” Harry, Hermione, and Ron clinked glasses, treating it as a toast before they downed their drinks, despite the fact that Harry and Hermione didn’t have to.

“Scabbers was my pet rat for years,” Ron explained. “It turned out it was really Peter Pettigrew in Animagus form and he used us to hide out.”

“Ugh!” Millicent was disgusted. “So that’s why you sounded so malicious earlier when you found out he was finally caught.”

“Yep,” Ron said.

“All right,” Hermione said. “I’ve never been in any of the other common rooms besides my own.” She put her drink down. Seamus, Millicent, Pansy and Draco shook their heads. When it came around to Blaise, he smirked and downed his drink, Harry drank his with a Cheshire grin on his face, and then Ron drank his with a smug grin.

Ron spoke up first. “Malfoy led me and Harry into the Slytherin common room during second year.”

“Me?!” Draco practically squeaked. “I would never have done that.”

“Oh, but you did,” Harry said slyly. “Maybe you’ll find out the circumstances later.”

“And you and Blaise?” Draco asked, eyes narrowed.

“Blaise and I have snuck each other into our respective dorms several times,” Harry said easily, sharing a grin with Blaise.

“I certainly didn’t expect that,” Hermione admitted.

“You’ve been bringing a Slytherin into our dorm room?” Ron exclaimed.

Harry nodded.

“Bloody Hell!”

“No wonder you didn’t care whether we sorted by gender or house. You won either way,” Draco drawled.

Harry smirked. “I didn’t mind the win-win situation.”

“My turn,” Seamus spoke up. “On the note of us sneaking around to have sex, I’ve never had sex where others could see me.”

Draco drank which didn’t really surprise anyone, but to everyone’s surprise, Harry also drank.

“You first,” Harry said generously to Draco as he grinned.

“It’s not exactly been unheard of for me to fool around in the Slytherin common room,” Draco drawled.

“I know,” Harry smirked.

Draco’s eyes widened and Blaise started laughing. “You were getting a blow job under the table from that sixth year girl one time when I was sneaking Harry into our dorm. We stopped to enjoy the show.”

“I bet that was interesting,” Seamus said with a lopsided grin.

“Harry, how could you have had sex in any kind of public situation?” Hermione asked with a frown.

Harry sent a sidelong glance at Ron before answering. “Bill snuck me out to this Muggle club in London one night. Nobody had a clue as to who I was. The lighting was fairly dim and it was definitely loud. Things got a little heated on the dance floor and we finished each other off at a back corner table.”

Ron’s eyes once again looked like they were about to pop out of his head. “You? Bill?” he squeaked.

Harry sniggered. “We didn’t actually shag in the club, Ron.”

“But Bill?” Ron’s voice still wasn’t back to normal.

Harry shrugged. “We shagged later that night and we had a good time, but that was actually the only time we were ever together. There honestly isn’t anything between me and any of your brothers.”

“Still, I’ll never be able to look at any of you the same ever again,” Ron said mournfully.

“Oh, honestly!” Hermione exclaimed. “They’re still the same people.” She rolled her eyes at Ron before gesturing to Millicent. “You’re next.”

Millicent sent a calculating eye around the table. “I think we need to back the questions up a little so that we can all catch up with Golden Boy there.” Everyone looked confused and she explained. “We’ve learned an awful lot about him, and even Blaise and Seamus to an extent, but not anyone else. I’ve never kissed a girl,” she said, pushing her glass back without taking a drink.

Pansy drank, causing eyebrows to rise around the table. “I’m not going to kiss and tell.” She smiled. “I don’t care, but the person I kissed would.” Everyone accepted that and looked to Draco next.

He downed his glass. “There’s no point in trying to name all of them.”

“Hey!” Pansy protested. “You could at least admit to kissing me.”

“Yes, of course, Pansy dear,” he said, rolling his eyes.

She shot him a pouting look, while the others chuckled at her sulkiness.

Blaise drank. “A couple girls that graduated last year,” he said with a shrug.

Harry drank. “Most people know I kissed Cho Chang.”

Draco eyed him shrewdly. “And what girls did you kiss that people don’t know about?”

Harry shot him a glare.

“Ooh, you have to tell us now,” Pansy squealed.

Harry looked over to his best friends. Hermione shrugged at Harry, then they both turned to Ron. “I’ve kissed Hermione and Ginny,” Harry finally admitted, cringing back from the explosion he expected from Ron.

The others, besides Hermione, were trying to suppress their laughter.

“You snogged my little sister, too?” Ron bellowed.

“Um, yeah,” Harry said in a small voice.

“Is there anyone else in my family that you’ve gotten to?”

“Um, no, that’s it,” Harry said.

Ron blinked. “That’s four of my siblings, Harry.”

“Yeah, well I kissed Hermione, too,” Harry said, trying to get Ron off the topic of his sister and his family. “And we decided we just wouldn’t work as anything but friends.”

Ron suddenly calmed down and picked up his glass and downed it. “Yeah, that I understand. I’ve kissed Hermione, too,” he admitted.

Harry raised his eyebrows. “So much for you two working out, huh?”

Hermione rolled her eyes and pushed her glass away, not saying a word.

Seamus drank with a huge grin. “I’ve kissed a few.”

“All right, well then let’s go with boys next,” Pansy said. “I’ve never kissed a boy.” She downed her drink with a rueful glance at Draco. She’d already admitted this.

Draco shook his head and pushed his glass away, eying Harry as he did it.

Blaise and Harry swapped their glasses in a significant gesture, downed the other’s drink, then gave each other a quick kiss.

“Nope, I’ve never swapped spit with another boy,” Harry said with a sardonic grin. Blaise and Seamus burst out laughing at Harry’s declaration, and the girls and Draco were sniggering.

Ron on the other hand, his face was scrunched in disgust. “Ewww! Did you have to put it that way?”

Harry just leered at him and Ron pushed his glass away.

Hermione drank and nodded her head at Ron.

“Hey, don’t I get the same treatment as Blaise?” Seamus pouted.

Blaise snickered and poured another scotch in Harry’s glass and passed it to Seamus. Harry sighed dramatically, pushed his chair back and made his way over to Seamus. Seamus grinned as he handed Harry his glass of Firewhiskey. After they’d both drank, Harry suddenly pushed hard on the back of Seamus’ chair to tip him backwards.

Leaning over, Harry gave him a deep kiss that lasted a full minute. Tipping Seamus forward again, Harry stepped back looking slightly unsteady. He grabbed the chair again to regain his balance before he looked around at the others.

“I changed my mind about what I said earlier,” Hermione whispered.

Harry blinked at her in confusion.

“You and Seamus do look hot together.”

Harry smirked and stumbled back over to take his seat again.

“Yeah,” Pansy breathed. “I never knew watching two guys would be so hot.”

Millicent quickly downed her drink, looking like she highly needed it.

Draco’s eyes were glazed over when he spoke up next. “I wonder if we’ll get demonstrations for the next one, too. I’ve never shagged a boy.”

Ron turned green. The three girls looked at Harry somewhat expectantly. Harry, Blaise and Seamus burst out laughing before clinking their glasses together and tossing them back.

“Only if I get to use you for demonstration,” Harry purred suggestively to Draco.

Draco’s eyes widened to saucers and Harry sniggered before turning to Hermione, letting Draco off the hook. “We know Ron hasn’t. How about you, Hermione?”

Hermione picked up her glass and drank. Ron was slowly turning red and he buried his face in his hands.

“Oh my,” Millicent said. “You’ve shagged Weasley. So is he as hot in bed as it’s been suggested?”

Hermione grinned at Millicent before turning to Harry, who was waiting expectantly for her answer. “Well, maybe I’m a little jealous that Harry got to experience more of the fiery redheads than I have,” she said with a waggle of her eyebrows.

“Oooh, how juicy!” Blaise exclaimed.

“Who would have ever guessed Weasley would be good in bed,” Draco drawled.

Everyone could see Ron’s ears burning a bright red. “We didn’t work out anyway,” Ron mumbled into his hands.

Hermione sighed somewhat sadly. “I understand what Harry was saying earlier. Not that I really fancy anyone else, but Ron and I decided that we really aren’t that well suited to each other.”

Ron finally lifted his head and offered Hermione a sweet smile. “It was fun trying to figure it out though.”

Hermione grinned. “That it was.”

Everyone turned to Millicent. She pushed her drink away with a shrug of her shoulders.

Pansy drank and cocked her head at Draco.

“Somehow that’s not quite a surprise,” Harry said with a wry grin.

“I can’t believe I’m admitting this, but I can relate to Granger,” Pansy said ruefully. “Draco and I have been friends for years and we gave it a try. It just didn’t work out for us.” Pansy and Hermione exchanged smiles, a moment of bonding.

“I’ve never shagged a girl,” Blaise declared cheerfully and promptly downed his Firewhiskey.

Harry cringed and drank his scotch. Hermione gazed at him with sympathy as Ron looked at him suspiciously.

“Not Hermione,” Harry said.

“You didn’t,” Ron said evenly, way too calm.

Harry nodded slowly.

“Oh, how hilarious! You’ve shagged four of the Weasleys,” Draco laughed hysterically.

“You buggered Ginny, too?!” Ron finally exploded. “I should kill you for taking advantage of my sister!”

“Hey!” Harry protested. “I didn’t take advantage of her. She actually approached me.”

“Sure, she approached you and asked you to shag her,” Ron spat sarcastically.

“She did!” Harry exclaimed. “You know that we’d become closer friends after fifth year and she’d always had that crush on me. She ended up asking me if we could experiment a little at the beginning of the summer. I told her we wouldn’t work out, but well, we were both curious,” he finished weakly.

Ron rubbed his eyes. “You were certainly right when you said I didn’t know everything about you.” Then he smiled wanly at Harry to let him know everything was still all right between them.

Saluting Hermione, Ron downed his drink. Hermione pushed hers back.

Seamus drank. “I’ve shagged a few girls. None of them here at school though. Without Harry around over the summer, I discovered that I had a fondness for nice, soft cushy girls, too.” He smiled ruefully to a round of chuckles.

Millicent and Pansy shook their heads and Draco drank. “I’ve shagged a few girls,” Draco admitted.

“Only a few?” Harry asked with a raised eyebrow.

Draco grinned. “We’re discussing shags at the moment, not number of snog sessions.”

Pansy and Millicent rolled their eyes. “He’s probably snogged half the girls in the school,” Millicent said.

Draco shrugged. “Only shagged a few though. I’ve never found anyone I really wanted to stick around very long.”

“That seems to be true for all of us,” Pansy said with a sigh.

“At least none of you are virgins,” Millicent retorted.

“That’s not necessarily a bad thing, though,” Ron said.

“Yeah, it’s like Harry and Blaise were saying before. It’s not bad for a girl to want to get to know a guy well first,” Hermione said softly.

Millicent smiled at Hermione and Ron in appreciation.

“Well, I guess we’re back to me,” Harry said.

“Oi! It took us this long just to go around once, didn’t it?” Ron exclaimed.

“Well, that’s because everyone questions me almost every time,” Harry retorted.

“Be thankful the rounds are taking so long,” Draco drawled. “Considering you’ve drank every time.”

Harry gazed down into his glass in surprise. He hadn’t realized. “No wonder I’m feeling so good.”

Blaise snickered. “You had an extra even. Seven shots of scotch and two Firewhiskeys. But don’t feel too bad, I’ve had seven myself.”

“I’ve only had three,” Hermione giggled.

“Me too,” Millicent said.

Pansy eyed her friend. “I’ve had five already.”

“And me,” Draco said with a nod.

“I’ve had five,” Ron said.

“Six,” Seamus beamed proudly.

“Maybe we need to have a round with no questions about sex then the rest of us can catch up,” Millicent said wryly.

“Oooh, good plan,” Harry agreed to the snickering group. “Er, I need to say something where I won’t have to drink,” he said thoughtfully.

“I never thought I’d live to see the end of this war,” he finally said quietly.

Silence reigned for several moments as Harry locked eyes with Draco. Draco deliberately pushed his glass away and bowed his head at Harry in acknowledgement. Harry bowed his head respectfully in return. With sad expressions, the others all stood and clinked glasses before drinking and resuming their seats.

“I never had to fight against my family,” Ron said in a moment of understanding. The four Gryffindors watched silently as the four Slytherins clinked glasses and drank.

Hermione studied the Slytherins, her gaze somewhat calculating. “I’ve never had to learn the Dark Arts,” she said, wanting the answer to that question.

Millicent and Pansy dropped their hands away from their glasses without drinking. Draco and Blaise both drank, unsurprisingly. Surprisingly, Harry did drink.

Astonished gazes fell upon him.

“Harry?” Hermione squeaked.

“War isn’t pretty,” Harry said simply.

“But,” she protested.

Harry held up his hand. “Light magic or dark magic, it’s all about intent.”

“And what was your intent?” Hermione snapped.

Harry stared at her. “To win the fucking war once and for all. And now that it’s finally over, we can get on with our lives.”

Hermione sighed and finally nodded. Harry pointedly shifted his gaze to Seamus.

“This is getting too depressing,” Seamus said morosely.

“I agree,” Millicent said quietly.

“Hey, Golden Boy, who’s not so golden after all,” Pansy said, getting Harry’s attention. “Why don’t you and Blaise give us another show?”

Harry laughed incredulously. He glanced around the group and saw the others nodding.

Ron shrugged. “Watching you two snog would be less depressing at least,” he said mournfully.

Harry grinned and turned to Blaise. “Feel like cheering everyone up?”

Blaise nodded. “Sure,” he said with an answering grin, turning his chair to face Harry.

In a blink Harry had pushed back from the table, was straddling Blaise’s lap and the two boys were kissing. Blaise brought his hands around to Harry’s back, holding him securely on his lap. Harry’s hands were twining in Blaise’s hair.

The others watched slack jawed as Harry plundered Blaise’s mouth. Blaise’s hands moved lower to cup Harry’s arse and Harry shifted closer to Blaise’s body. Both boys moaned into each other’s mouths, while Harry’s hands went to the buttons on Blaise’s shirt, fumbling to get them open.

“Merlin,” Hermione breathed. “I’m not sure they’re going to stop.”

Chapter Text

Ron rolled his eyes before reaching across and pulling hard on the back of Harry’s shirt, causing the two boys to break apart and Harry to fall on his arse on the floor.

Harry blinked up at all the glazed eyes staring at him. He caught Draco staring at him intently, eyes glazed over with lust. Harry blinked again.

“Are you all right?” Blaise asked quietly.

Harry fell back on the plush black carpet and threw an arm over his eyes. “Aside from the fact that I’m seriously sexually frustrated at the moment, I’m just fine,” he muttered.

Harry heard the laughter and petulantly stuck his tongue out at them all.

“I think we’re probably all a bit sexually frustrated after that show,” Hermione giggled.

“Blaise, I hope you know I hate you,” Harry said calmly.

Blaise chuckled. “I know. I hate you, too.”

“You two sure don’t look like you hate each other,” Ron said in confusion again.

“Harry’s just upset because I’m not the one he really wants, but now I’ve got him all hot and bothered."

“I’m not even the same gender as the one Blaise really wants,” Harry retorted.

“Ah, but you’re so sexy so I’ve no problem with using your body until I get what I want.”

Harry grabbed Blaise’s hand, which had been hanging at his side, and tugged. Blaise came tumbling onto the floor next to Harry. Harry rolled over on top of him and grinned. “I don’t have a problem with using your sexy body either.”

Then Harry leaned down and kissed Blaise’s neck. “Unfortunately, you know as well as I do that this isn’t the time to use each other,” he whispered into Blaise’s ear, causing the other boy to shiver. “Snogging is one thing, any more action between us would be damaging any chances.”

Blaise groaned and nodded. However, his groan was not from Harry’s attention like the others thought, all of whom were still avidly watching the two on the floor.

Harry stood in one fluid motion despite having drunk so much that evening. He offered his hand and pulled Blaise to his feet. The two turned back to stare at the group sitting around the table staring back at them. They quietly sat back down at the table.

Pansy giggled, breaking the silence. “Well, that effectively cheered everyone up,” she said brightly.

“Yeah, I’m cheered up all right,” Harry grumbled as he shifted in his seat. Blaise was glowering and shifting in the seat next to him. The girls giggled as the other boys sniggered at them.

“Well now what?” Draco asked.

“I’m actually getting tired,” Millicent said.

“Me too,” Hermione agreed. “It is getting awfully late.”

“I claim the bathroom first for us girls,” Pansy declared as she got up from her seat, stumbling a little. “Gotta get there before Draco or we’ll never get in,” she said with a cheeky grin.

Draco glared at her. “I won’t be taking a shower until the morning anyway,” he snapped.

“So there’s no problem then,” Pansy tossed over her shoulder.

The girls all disappeared, leaving the five boys still sitting at the table. “I’m going to go get changed,” Ron said. “Without you two in the room,” he added, scowling at Harry and Seamus.

They both rolled their eyes at Ron. “I’ll stay out here until you’re done,” Harry said in exasperation.

“I’m just going to go change in your dorm for now,” Seamus said with a wry smile. “I don’t feel like arguing with him tonight.” Blaise smirked and gestured for him to go ahead.

Harry absently poured himself another glass of scotch before offering the bottle to Draco. Harry sipped at it this time. Snape would kill him if he ever found out Harry was using his good scotch for shots. He stared at the swirling liquid as he twirled the glass.

It had been a very surreal day. Locked in the potions classroom, their transformation of said classroom, the last of the Death Eaters caught, Wormtail finally in custody. Sirius would finally be exonerated, but he was long dead. Harry’s parents had been dead even longer. And just today it was over.

Harry downed the scotch in one long swallow then threw the glass as hard as he could, shattering it against the stone wall.

“Hey!” Blaise exclaimed, startled from his own thoughts.

Draco had been watching Harry though, and had almost expected something like that from the dark expressions flittering across Harry’s features. Draco caught Harry’s eye and pointedly downed the rest of his drink before throwing his glass at the wall as well.

“What the hell is going on out here?” Ron shouted. The others reappeared as well, looking concerned.

“I don’t know,” Blaise snapped. “These two seem to be bonding over something, yet they haven’t said a word to each other.”

“Harry?” Hermione questioned softly. “Are you all right?”

“I’m fine, Hermione,” Harry said, never taking his eyes from Draco. “I’m just glad it’s all finally over.”

“Some of us just had to pay a higher price for this war than others,” Draco added, eyes still locked with Harry’s.

Their words were heavy with meaning and everyone nodded. Harry sighed wearily and finally turned to look at Hermione. She was in her nightgown and dressing robe.

“Ready for bed?” he asked softly, standing up and holding his arms out.

She nodded and came up to Harry, wrapping her arms around him and holding him tightly. He hugged her to him and placed a kiss on the top of her head. “I really am fine, Hermione.”

Her eyes were bright when she pulled away. She kissed him lightly on the cheek and gave him a tender smile. “I know.”

“Good night, Hermione.”

“Night, Harry,” Hermione said. She stopped to give Ron a hug as well before waving to the others and disappearing into the girl’s dorm they’d created.

Harry glanced over and realized that Pansy had been doing almost the same thing with Draco and now she was giving Blaise a hug and kiss on the cheek.

Harry was startled when Pansy stopped in front of him. She looked at him, studying him for a moment. “You’re all right, Potter,” she said quietly.

Harry smiled. “Call me Harry, then.”

“All right, Harry,” she said, smiling in return.

Harry held his arms out slightly in question and she stepped forward. “You’re all right too, Pansy,” Harry murmured into her hair as he gave her a hug.

She pulled away and grinned at him. Harry saw Millicent quietly watching and stepped over quickly and wrapped her in a tight hug, causing her to squeak. After a half second though, she hugged him back just as tightly.

“Goodnight, girls,” Harry said grinning. They shook their heads at him with smiles on their faces. Saying their good nights, they left for bed.

“Harry, you really are something,” Ron muttered.

“Ah, you jealous that I gave all the girls hugs and not you?” Harry asked with a wicked grin.

“No!” Ron exclaimed even as Harry lunged and caught him in a bear hug. Ron pushed and shoved to get Harry off of him. “Get off me!”

“You know you love me,” Harry said cheekily.

“Yeah, like a brother, not like the rest of my siblings,” Ron retorted.

Harry chuckled. “Just go to bed, Ron.”

Ron sobered up. “You really all right, mate?”

“I’m fine,” Harry said softly. “I’ll be in to go to bed soon. I’ve just got to wait for my turn in the bathroom.”

“All right then. If you’re sure,” Ron said, still slightly concerned.

“I’m sure,” Harry said, rolling his eyes.

“I’m going to bed, too,” Seamus said.

“Me too,” Blaise added. “It’s been a long day.”

The three boys disappeared leaving Harry and Draco alone. Harry went and flopped down bonelessly in one of the armchairs, propping his head on one arm and throwing his legs over the other. Draco quietly came and sat in the chair across from Harry, laying across it much like Harry was.

They remained quiet and relaxed as Seamus and Blaise took their turns in the bathroom.

“You can go next,” Harry offered.

Draco shook his head. “Always the solicitous Gryffindor, aren’t you?” he asked with a wry smile.

Harry shrugged. “Not always,” he said simply.

Draco studied him. “No, I guess you’re not, are you? You’re really not who I thought you were.”

“I’ve been playing a part, just like you.”

Draco was quiet for a minute and Harry wondered if he’d fallen asleep.

“How is it that you know I’ve been playing a part, but I haven’t had a clue about you?” Draco finally spoke up again.

Harry thought about how to answer that. He didn’t think Draco would be very receptive to the truth. Not the whole truth anyway.

“I’ve watched you,” Harry admitted.

“But I’ve watched you, too,” Draco protested. “The whole know thy enemy thing.”

Harry nodded in agreement. “But I’ve had an advantage that you didn’t.”

“When is that not the case?” Draco muttered.

Harry looked over. “I know you’ve resented me all these years,” he said, surprising the Slytherin with his bluntness. “And to some extent you’ve had good reason, too. I’ve done plenty of things that other students would get expelled for and we both know it.”

He sighed wearily before continuing. “What you don’t realize is how much I was manipulated into those situations. Dumbledore and Voldemort have been the two biggest players manipulating my life. But my relatives, the ministry, the Order, and hell, even Dobby has manipulated me into difficult situations.”

“Dobby?” Draco exclaimed incredulously.

Harry grinned and explained more about how Dobby had tried to help him second year. It was due to Dobby’s blocking the entrance to the platform that Ron and Harry ended up flying the car to Hogwarts.

“So yeah, we probably should have been expelled as we did make a lousy choice,” Harry admitted.

“But it also wasn’t completely your fault,” Draco said in sudden understanding.

“No, it wasn’t,” Harry said, shaking his head. “Anyway, you’ve been manipulated heavily in your life, too, but not by nearly as many players.”

“It was mainly just my father,” Draco admitted quietly.

Harry nodded. “Yes, and when you chose to go against your father’s wishes, it was a huge step across.”

“Hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life,” Draco said bitterly.

“I’m sure it was,” Harry said softly. “It was also a very outward change that gave me the advantage in watching you. Knowing that you switched sides, I’ve been able to observe all the little ways you’ve been slowly going against the things your father taught you.

“You’re still a Malfoy above all else and it’s been difficult for you to change. You’ve been working for months to decide what Draco Malfoy should accept as valuable lessons from his father and what he should toss out. As you’ve tried to decide, you’ve still kept on the masks that you’ve always worn.”

Draco was staring at him wide-eyed. “How could you possibly know that?”

Harry smiled softly. “Because I’ve watched you, like I said. I’ve seen the confusion in your eyes sometimes. The slightest hesitations before you’ve called Hermione a mudblood. The slight weariness in your stance when you realize you’ve come across me in the corridors and have to fight again to keep up your appearances. The disgust that flickers across your face when your hear some of your housemates bragging about their latest victims.”

“You’ve noticed all that?” Draco whispered, even more incredulous at what Harry had revealed about him.

Harry nodded. “I doubt that anyone else has noticed though, and I haven’t said anything to anyone. I knew that like me, to some extent you’ve been waiting for the last of the Death Eaters to be caught. I think for both of us this signals an end to one era of our lives.”

Draco nodded wearily. “Thank fuck it’s over finally.” Then he narrowed his eyes again. “So why haven’t I realized you’ve been playing a role all this time?”

Harry chuckled lightly. “Because my role never changed like yours did. You’ve been watching the same Golden Boy that you’ve watched since first year. My role of saving the wizarding world has always been the same.”

“But you’ve obviously changed over the last year or so,” Draco protested. “Bloody hell! You’ve pointed out so many things today that you’ve done that sound downright Slytherin!”

Harry grinned. “I’ve grown up and become more confident over the last year, but I haven’t exactly changed my basic attitudes. I’ll let you in on a secret,” he whispered conspiratorially.

“What’s that?” Draco asked warily.

“The sorting hat wanted me to go into Slytherin first year,” Harry said with a wicked grin.

“What?!” Draco exclaimed, his jaw dropping.

Harry smirked at Draco’s gobsmacked expression. “It said Slytherin could help me on my way to greatness and I had a thirst to prove myself.” He shrugged. “It also said I didn’t have a bad mind, which I assume meant I could’ve gone into Ravenclaw. Then there was also the plenty of courage thing that landed me in Gryffindor.”

Draco rubbed his eyes. “I think I’ve had too much to drink tonight,” he muttered.

Harry chuckled. “Maybe, but it still doesn’t change the fact that I could’ve been in Slytherin with you. So see, I’ve always had these Slytherin qualities and I’ve used them well to help me slither out of sticky situations,” he added wryly.

Draco narrowed his eyes at Harry again. “And being a closet sneaky Slytherin, you’ve been able to hide all these things over the last year.”

Harry nodded. “It wasn’t exactly easy, but it wasn’t that hard either. Even meeting up with Blaise. You’ve been watching me, but there’s been no overt changes in my life. I’ve still got the same attitudes I’ve always had. You’re the one who has changed over the last year.”

Draco sighed. “I have,” he admitted.

They were quiet for several minutes, lost in their own thoughts.

“So why didn’t you go into Slytherin?” Draco asked suddenly.

“Because you were an obnoxious prat.”

“Because of me?” Draco asked incredulously.

Harry sighed. “Partly. But I suppose I should back up a bit for it to make sense.”

Draco looked at him in confusion.

Harry sighed again. “My relatives are awful. They’ve always hated me for existing. My aunt treated me like I was her personal house elf. My uncle would rant at me at every opportunity about how much of a freak I was. My cousin, who’s about my age, would use me as his personal punching bag, and him and his friends would taunt me and bully me every chance they got.”

Draco was looking appropriately horrified. “I thought you got treated like a little hero prince at home.”

“Most people think that,” Harry said. “I certainly don’t like to brag about my home life and I don’t want everyone’s pity.”

He continued with his story. “Anyway, my cousin was spoiled to the extreme. He threw his tantrums and got every last thing he ever wanted. I never got anything,” he said bitterly. “My room was the cupboard under the stairs. If I didn’t get my chores done I could get locked in there for long periods of time with very little food. I certainly didn’t have much to do in there.”

He shook himself out of those memories, his eyes coming into focus again. “They tried to keep my Hogwarts letter from me, but Hagrid tracked us down where my uncle had tried to hide us. He took me to Diagon Alley and taught me a little about the Wizarding world that I should have known all along. He also told me about Voldemort and how he’d killed my parents. He said Voldemort had been a Slytherin. Didn’t exactly make me fond of the house.”

He paused, looking over at Draco. “And I met you there that day.”

Draco nodded sadly. “I remember. And I bet I had the same spoiled brat attitude that you were used to seeing in your cousin, topped off by me spouting off about Slytherin.”

Harry shrugged his agreement. “I’m afraid so. Then I met Ron on the train. My first real friend who seemed to actually like me and I liked him. I’d never had any friends because Dudley scared them all off. You showed up and started throwing out insults. All said and done, by the time I got to the sorting hat I just kept saying ‘not Slytherin’ over and over in my head as it tried to decide. Finally it put me in Gryffindor.”

Draco sighed wearily. “You’ve had me pegged right from the very beginning while I’ve had you pegged wrong from the very beginning.”

Harry gave Draco a rueful smile. “I’m willing to start over if you are.”

Draco studied Harry contemplatively for a minute until he suddenly held out his hand between the two chairs. “Friends?”

Harry accepted his hand immediately with a wide grin. “Friends,” he agreed.

Draco returned the grin. “This feels right finally.”

“It’s been a long road with a lot of things gone wrong for both of us,” Harry said. “I think it’s about time something started going right.”

Draco nodded in agreement before breaking out in a huge yawn, triggering Harry to yawn too.

“Merlin it’s late,” Harry muttered. “We need to be getting to bed.”

They both rolled themselves out of the chairs they were sprawled in. “I’ll just be a minute,” Harry said, heading into the bathroom.

He met Draco on the way out. “So do I get to call you Draco now?”

“I suppose so, Harry,” Draco drawled, causing Harry to grin.

“Well, good night then,” Harry said.

“What? I don’t get a hug?” Draco asked innocently. “Everyone else got one.”

Harry quirked an eyebrow in amusement, even though he wasn’t sure where Draco was going with this. “I suppose I did give everyone else a hug tonight.” Harry held his arms out slightly like he’d done with Pansy. It wasn’t an extremely overt gesture but the openness was there.

Despite his shock when Draco willingly stepped into his embrace, Harry automatically wrapped his arms around Draco. Harry inhaled deeply and thought he could become more intoxicated from Draco’s smell than from the alcohol he’d consumed.

Draco stepped back, leaving Harry feeling slightly dazed. Draco smirked at him. “Good night, Harry,” he said before turning and disappearing into the bathroom.

Harry wandered into his makeshift dorm and somehow managed to get changed into his pajamas before slipping into bed. With the long day and all the alcohol, he was asleep quickly, but Harry would be having sweet dreams that night.

Chapter Text

Someone was shaking Harry, which wasn’t good because it felt like his head was going to explode and his stomach was roiling.

“Harry Potter, sir. Wake up,” Dobby squeaked.

Oh, Harry really didn’t need to hear Dobby’s high pitched squeak at the moment. He cracked open his eyes only to see a pair of huge eyes staring right back at him in concern.

“It’s good you are woke finally,” Dobby squeaked. “Everyone is sleeping still. Breakfast is served.”

“Thanks, Dobby.”

Dobby was looking at him in concern.

“It’s okay, Dobby. You can go. I’m up and I’ll get the others up.”

Dobby didn’t look too sure about that but he disappeared.

Harry’s head was spinning and he truly felt like hurling. He groaned and could only be thankful that there were no windows shining bright sunlight into this dungeon classroom.

Very carefully, he rolled his way out of bed and made his way to the bathroom. He finished his business and managed not to hurl despite the urge to still do so. It was way too early in the day for this.

He slowly made his way over to Snape’s office and muttered the password. Making his way to Snape’s cupboard stocked full of finished potions, he blearily searched for a hangover potion. Finally finding one, he quickly pulled the stopper and downed the vial. Seconds later he was sighing in relief as his head stopped throbbing and his stomach calmed down.

Searching again, Harry muttered to himself as he realized that he could only find two more of the precious vials. Unfortunately there were seven more people that were going to want them.

He may not have been hung over anymore but he was definitely still exhausted from the late night. Looking at the time, he realized that Dobby had woken him up at 7:00 in the bloody morning. It was a mystery as to why their breakfast had been served an hour earlier than normal. He snorted softly. It was probably Dobby’s way of doing something special for him.

Shuffling out of the office and to the table, he recognized the warming and cooling charms on their food. It’d be safe to leave it for awhile. Despite the potion, he didn’t exactly feel like eating yet anyway.

He sighed and made his way to the far corner of the room where one of the workbenches they hadn’t transfigured was sitting besides Snape’s desk. Gathering a cauldron, ingredients and other necessary items, he set about making a batch of the hangover potion.

Whoever had created the original potion had been pretty smart as far as Harry was concerned. It wasn’t a particularly difficult potion and didn’t take long to make. Bonuses for the times when you had to make it while you actually had a hangover.

He made a huge batch and, by the time he’d finished, he had enough for everyone this morning and enough for tomorrow morning too, if they needed it. Plus he could replace the one out of Snape’s stores that he’d used.

After cleaning up from the potion making, he gathered up his clothes and made his way back to the bathroom. At least he could get his shower in this morning with no problem.

A little while later, he stood in the middle of their common room and debated as to whether or not he should wake everyone up. It was well after 8:00 now and not even Hermione, the perpetual early riser, had made an appearance. Giving a mental shrug, he went to eat his breakfast instead. He wasn’t looking forward to waking anyone up, even with hangover potions in hand.

Halfway through his breakfast, the three girls stumbled out of their makeshift dorm room. He grinned and held up the potion vials he’d set on the table next to him. They visibly sighed in relief and gratefully took three vials off his hands.

“Oooh, that’s much better,” Pansy sighed as the potion kicked in.

“Mmmm,” Millicent murmured in agreement.

“You’re my hero,” Hermione said, giving him a cheeky grin.

Harry chuckled. “You’re welcome, girls.”

Hermione and Millicent offered Pansy the shower first and sat down to eat their breakfast. By the time Harry was done eating, Pansy and Millicent switched. He sat back, debating what to do next. He still didn’t want to have to wake anyone up.

“What were you doing up so early?” Hermione asked. “You’re never up before me and especially not after a night like last night.”

“Dobby woke me up at 7:00 this morning, informing me that breakfast was served,” Harry said ruefully.

“What I want to know is where you got the potions,” Pansy said.

Harry grinned. “I snitched one from Snape’s office so I could function,” he admitted. “But there were only a couple more vials, so I brewed a batch.”

Pansy blinked. “I drank a potion that you brewed?”

Harry smirked. “Yep.”

Pansy blinked again. “Well, it seems to have worked,” she finally said.

“Harry’s much better at potions than he used to be,” Hermione defended. Then she looked at Harry curiously. “Although, I didn’t know that you knew how to make one like this.”

“Snape taught it to me,” Harry said with his usual careless shrug. “He made sure I knew how to brew it properly and made me brew a batch before he gave me the liquor for our celebration last spring.”

Pansy shook her head. “I can’t believe Snape’s been helping you all this time.”

“He’s still a snarky git, but he’s not so bad once you get to know him.”

They made idle conversation as the girls finished their breakfasts and their showers.

Finally Harry looked over to the two doors, behind which slept four boys who were going to be very cranky once woke up.

“I’m not waking them up,” Hermione protested when Harry brought up that fact.

Pansy and Millicent shook their heads vehemently.

“I think I’ll go work on my potions homework,” Hermione said.

“I agree,” Pansy said.

“Homework has got to be better than waking them up,” Millicent said.

Harry shot the girls a glare before sighing and picking up one of the potions. He’d start with Seamus.

Seamus was actually already sitting up when Harry walked in. Harry handed him the potion without a word and Seamus guzzled it down. “You’re a lifesaver,” Seamus murmured in appreciation.

Harry grinned. “Go take your shower, and then breakfast is on the table. I’m not waking anyone else up until you’re out of the bathroom.” Both of them looked over to the bed where Ron was snoring loudly.

Seamus snorted. “Can’t say as I blame you.”

While Seamus went to take his shower, Harry decided he might as well work on his potions assignment, too. It wasn’t like he had much else to do and hopefully the girls would help him.

When Seamus was done, Harry debated whether to wake Ron or Blaise next. He knew very well how hard Ron was to wake up and went to see about Blaise. Both Blaise and Draco were still sound asleep.

Harry stood by Draco’s bed for a couple of minutes just watching him. He had been able to watch Draco sleep a couple times before when Harry had been visiting Blaise in the Slytherin dorms and Blaise had fallen asleep before Harry left. Underneath his invisibility cloak, he’d been able to watch Draco unobserved.

The boy was always gorgeous, but he was downright beautiful when he slept. There were no masks when Draco was asleep. His lips were parted slightly and his breathing light. Long lashes were dark against his pale cheeks. With his creamy, soft skin and silky, platinum hair spread against pillows covered in black silk, Draco took on an ethereal appearance.

Harry sighed and turned to wake Blaise before the girls started wondering. He smiled when he looked down at the sleeping Blaise. Blaise was certainly gorgeous, too. Harry sat down on the bed and leaned over and kissed him. Not getting a reaction, Harry kissed his way along Blaise’s jaw to his ear. Nibbling on the ear gently, Harry whispered, “It’s time to wake up.”

Blaise stirred slightly and Harry sucked lightly at a sensitive spot on his neck. Blaise stirred again and cracked open his eyes. “Harry?”

Harry lifted his head and smiled. “Here, drink this,” he said, handing him the potions vial. Blaise sat up with a groan and drank the vial down.

“Thanks, I needed that,” Blaise whispered, still not quite awake.

“You’re welcome.” Harry told him the same thing he’d told Seamus about the shower and breakfast before he went to go check on Ron. Blaise would probably be done before Harry could drag Ron out of bed. It was almost 10:00 by now and Ron had gone to bed around 1:00, along with most of the others. He’d slept long enough in Harry’s opinion.

There was nothing gentle about waking Ron up. Standing next to the bed, Harry shoved Ron’s shoulder. Ron grumbled a bit, but settled back to sleep immediately. Harry shoved again.

“Wake up, Ron!” Harry yelled.

“Don’t wanna,” Ron muttered before rolling over.

Harry shoved again. “It’s time for breakfast!”

Ron cracked his eyes open at that and rolled over onto his back, promptly groaning and clutching at his head.

“Bloody hell, Harry,” Ron muttered. “What’d you wake me for? My head’s killing me and my stomach doesn’t feel any better.”

“I brought you a hangover potion,” Harry said, pressing the vial into Ron’s hand. “Sit up and drink it, then you’ll feel better.”

Ron groaned again as he sat up. Harry pulled the stopper for him on the vial before handing it back. Ron didn’t seem coordinated enough to even handle that much at the moment.

Ron sighed in relief. “You’ve always been my best mate,” he said gratefully.

Harry chuckled. “You’re mine, too. Now get your arse out of bed and into the shower. Your breakfast has been waiting for hours already.”

“Really?” Ron asked.

“Really,” Harry said ruefully. “I’ll tell you about it once you’ve woken up.”

Harry went back out to their common room and started working on his assignment again. The room was quiet as everyone was either studying or finishing up their breakfast. Ron grimaced as he came out of the shower to see everyone studying and otherwise ignored them as he went straight to the dining table.

“Aren’t you going to wake Draco up now?” Pansy asked after a few minutes of Ron eating breakfast. “Or is that too much even for the brave Gryffindor?”

Harry looked up from his assignment and grinned. “I admit I’m not looking forward to waking him up, but I’m letting him sleep a little longer because he was up later than everyone else,” he admitted.

That caught everyone’s attention and all eyes focused on Harry. Pansy frowned. “Why was he up late and how do you know?”

“We were up late talking and I think we were able to work out a few issues. We decided to finally become friends instead of enemies,” Harry said casually, not at all acting like he was dropping a bombshell.

“What?!” they all shouted.

“I said Draco and I are friends now,” Harry stated calmly.

“Really?” Pansy asked, still not seeming to believe she’d heard right.

“He’s Malfoy,” Hermione stated like it made rational sense.

Seamus and Blaise were blinking furiously, trying to clear their shock.

“You and Draco? Actual friends?” Millicent questioned, her face twisting in confusion much like Ron’s did when he thought about Harry and Snape being on good terms with each other.

That wasn’t the look on Ron’s face at the moment, though. The pleasantness from the night before was long forgotten and Ron looked furious. Harry watched and waited for the explosion. Ron stomped over to stand a few feet in front of Harry.

“How could you?” Ron finally let loose. “It’s bloody Malfoy that you’re talking about.”

“I know that,” Harry snapped. “I happen to want to be friends with him.”

“Why would you want to be friends with an evil bastard like him?”

“For one thing, he’s not evil,” Harry retorted. “Yeah, he can be a bastard, but so what.”

“So what?!” Ron exclaimed incredulously, his face turning a furious red. “He’s been a bastard to you all these years, Harry. Not to mention me and Hermione and all the rest of the Gryffindors.”

“I know that.”

“Then why? Why would you want to be friends with him?”

“Because I like him. He’s intelligent, funny when he’s not making fun of people, and he’s absolutely gorgeous. He’s also a strong person. I admire him just like I admire these three for surviving what they’ve had to go through,” Harry said, nodding towards Millicent, Pansy and Blaise.

“But they haven’t been so bad to us. Malfoy’s still the same nasty git he’s always been.”

“He’s changed over the last year. He’s fucking grown up, Ron.”

“He hasn’t changed,” Ron spluttered his incredulousness.

Harry rolled his eyes. “Just because you haven’t seen how he’s changed, doesn’t mean I haven’t. That’s one of the main things we talked about last night.”

“Oh, so that’s how he got to you,” Ron shouted. “You know he’s an evil Slytherin, and he just fed you a bunch of lies to trick you.”

Harry’s nostrils flared and the three Slytherins in the room jumped up. Harry held out a hand to stop them and, somewhat surprisingly, Pansy, Millicent and Blaise backed off without saying anything, letting Harry fight out this battle with Ron.

Harry stepped forward and glared at Ron. His voice was low and deadly when he spoke. “Slytherin is not synonymous with evil. We’ve had that argument many times already and it’s about time you grew up and figured that out.”

Ron backed off a little, but his anger didn’t lessen. “Yeah, you’ve convinced me of that, but the point still remains that Malfoy himself is an evil bastard just like his father,” Ron snarled.

Harry saw red. He swung and his fist connected with Ron’s jaw, knocking Ron backwards.

Ron put a hand up to his jaw and stared at Harry in shock. All of them were staring at Harry in shock.

Harry’s expression was dangerous and he was radiating pure power in his anger. “Don’t you ever say that again,” he said, his voice just as low and deadly as it had been moments earlier. “Draco is not his father, just like I’m not my father. Snape judged me based on my father’s actions for years and it’s a miserable fucking position to be in.”

“Harry,” Hermione spoke his name hesitantly.

Harry turned his gaze to her.

“Do you really think Malfoy’s changed that much?” she asked tentatively.

“I know he has,” Harry said with confidence.

“Well, I know we were getting along somewhat peaceably last night, but this is kind of a forced situation.”

Harry rolled his eyes. “Draco’s been changing his attitudes about things for months. It hasn’t happened just because we’ve been locked in here.”

“But how do you know that?” Pansy asked with a frown. “I mean, I know that, but you couldn’t possibly.”

Hermione looked at Harry with new interest after Pansy’s words.

“Because I’ve watched him for years,” Harry explained. “I’ve seen him change.”

“He hasn’t changed at all though,” Hermione said.

“Not where anyone’s seen,” Pansy added.

“Well, I’ve seen,” Harry retorted.

“But he’s been so careful,” Pansy said.

Harry smiled ruefully. “I know he has. It’s only been tiny things I’ve noticed, but they added up over the months. I’ve watched him for years,” he reiterated. “I’ve noticed.”

“When I said you were both bonding last night after you smashed those glasses, you really were bonding, weren’t you?” Blaise spoke up with sudden insight. “You two were appreciating the fact that it’s all finally over for the both of you.”

Harry winked at him. “You’ve got a good mind to go along with that great body.”

The tension was broken a little as most of them laughed. As usual, Ron was the exception. His brow was furrowed in thought as he tried to figure it all out.

“I suppose he really wasn’t being that bad last night,” Ron said slowly.

Harry sighed wearily. Working through things like this with Ron could be downright tiring at the best of times and Harry was exhausted before they’d started. He’d still only had a few hours of sleep.

“No, Ron, he wasn’t,” Harry said. “And I never said you had to be friends with him anyway. I only said that I’d made my peace with him.”

“You really don’t think he’ll use anything you said yesterday against you?”

“For one, nothing I said yesterday could really be used against me because I get to finally be who I want to be,” Harry said wryly. “The war being over makes it possible for me.”

Harry looked at Ron steadily. “I think you’ll also find that it changes things for Draco, too. We’ve both had very big roles to play in the war. You don’t have to understand the role Draco had to play. It’s enough for you to know that he had to play one. And now it’s over.”

Ron stared at Harry for several very long moments. “Fine, Harry. I trust you.”

Seamus snorted. “You tend to forget that sometimes, just like I forgot in fifth year.” Seamus and Ron shared sheepish smiles.

Harry turned and disappeared into Snape’s office, everyone’s eyes following him curiously. He reappeared and handed Ron a vial of pain relieving potion and a small tub of bruise salve in apology for punching him.

Ron took them and nodded his acceptance of the unspoken apology. “Sorry, mate,” he said quietly, speaking his own apology out loud.

“It’s done,” Harry said with a shrug.

“I’ll go start brewing some replacements for those,” Hermione said.

“I’ll help,” Blaise offered cheerfully.

Hermione smiled. “Thanks, I’d appreciate it.”

“So, brave Gryffindor,” Pansy said with a cheeky grin. “I’ll ask again if you’re going to go attempt to wake Draco up.”

Chapter Text

Harry snagged the last hangover potion from his pocket and held it up loftily. “This brave Gryffindor has a secret weapon this morning.”

Laughter followed him as Harry walked away to go wake Draco up. Entering the room, Harry was greeted by a vicious snarl.

“What the fuck was all the yelling about?”

He was still lying in bed with his arm thrown over his face, which was twisted in obvious pain. Harry smiled. Draco was not happy in the slightest.

Harry padded over to the bed quietly. “Drink this first and then I’ll tell you.”

Draco shifted his arm to behind his head and cracked his eyes open fractionally to see Harry. “Why the fuck are you in here?” he asked, not quite snarling, confusion coloring his words.

Harry shook his head, smiling wryly. Hopefully Draco would remember last night. It wasn’t something he’d thought about until now. With as much as they’d drank last night, it was perhaps surprising that Harry himself remembered. But then again, neither of them had actually passed out.

“I brought you a hangover potion.”

“Where’d you get it from?” Draco asked suspiciously, even as he was eyeing it greedily.

Harry sighed. Draco was a cautious little bugger. “I brewed up a batch of it this morning.”

Draco groaned and did a lot of wincing as he slowly sat up. Taking the potion from Harry, he pulled the stopper and sniffed at the potion. Harry rolled his eyes.

“Everyone else has already drank it, so it’s not going to poison you,” Harry said in exasperation.

Draco sniffed at it again and studied the vial for a moment before finally drinking it. Moments later he was sighing in relief and he lay back down on the bed.

“So much better,” he said, his eyes closed, his expression relaxed.

Harry chuckled lightly. “Everyone’s been most appreciative of the potion this morning.”

Draco cracked one eye open to stare at Harry. “Did we become friends last night?”

“Yes, we did, Draco,” Harry said, pointedly using Draco’s first name. He grinned. Thankfully Draco did remember after all.

“Oh, thought I might have dreamed it again,” Draco said, his eyes closing.

Harry arched an eyebrow in surprise. Did that mean Draco had wanted to be friends for awhile? Draco didn’t appear to have realized what he’d said and Harry let it slide. Particularly since Draco was asking another question.

“So what the fuck was all the yelling about?” Draco asked. “It woke me up but I couldn’t understand any of it with my head trying to split in two.”

Harry bit his lip. He wasn’t sure if Draco had actually wanted the others to know. “Um, I kinda let the others know that we’d decided to become friends last night. Ron went ballistic at the news.”

“Ah, so the friendship is over already,” Draco said bitterly.

For once, Harry was pleased with Draco’s bitter tone. “No, it isn’t,” Harry said cheerfully. “So you’re all right with the others knowing? Because I just got to thinking that you might not have wanted to tell them.”

Draco’s eyes opened to stare at Harry incredulously. “The war’s over,” he said slowly. “I can be friends with whoever I want to now.”

“Good,” Harry said brightly.

Draco was still staring at him. “Weasley’s not going to let you be friends with me, though. You’re already fighting with him about it,” Draco said, his tone again laced with a touch of bitterness.

Harry looked down at his hands. With the fingers of his left hand he smoothed over the knuckles on his right. The gesture and the significance weren’t lost on Draco, and his eyes widened in amazement.

“You literally fought with him about being friends with me?”

“Um, I got a little angry,” Harry admitted. “And I guess you could say I felt the need to literally knock some sense into him. We argued and I think he’s all right with it now.”

Draco blinked. “And the others?” he asked. “Are they all right with us being friends?”

Harry shrugged. “They seemed to be, once they got over the initial shock. I think Pansy inadvertently helped me to convince Hermione.”

Draco shook his head. “I really didn’t think it was possible,” he muttered to himself.

Harry grinned. “Why don’t you get up and get your shower? You’ve long since missed breakfast and by the time you’re ready, lunch should be here.”

“Yeah, all right.”

Harry left the room with a smile.

“Is he awake now? You seem to have survived,” Pansy said, eying Harry’s huge smile.

Harry laughed. “He’s awake and I had to convince him the potion wouldn’t poison him,” he admitted.

“Why do you seem so happy about it?”

“I think he’s a little in shock now, since I explained to him what happened out here earlier.” Harry smirked. “Rediscovering that he’s now friends with me, along with everyone seemingly all right with it, was a bit much for him this morning.”

That I can relate to,” Ron muttered.

Laughter was resounding throughout the room as Draco emerged and made his way to the bathroom.

“You can all shut the fuck up now,” Draco snarled over his shoulder.

The laughter didn’t stop as he disappeared again.

“Good to know he’s still Draco, despite becoming friends with Gryffindors,” Blaise said, still snickering.

Gradually the group quieted down again. The atmosphere was comfortably relaxed, which was something very new to this group, but they were all appreciative of it.

Even Ron seemed to finally relax. He had obviously been talked into working on his potions assignment as well, and was currently talking with Millicent trying to get her help, since Hermione was still working with Blaise on the healing potion and burn salve.

Seamus was attempting to sweet talk Pansy into helping him. Harry looked up from his own assignment when she started giggling. He watched as she tried to bat away Seamus’ hands from her assignment. Seamus was mock pouting until she finally gave in and let him see her parchment.

Friendships seemed to be forming and Harry wondered if anything more might come out of it. He looked over to where Hermione and Blaise were working companionably together. Harry smiled when he noticed Hermione stealing glances at Blaise when she thought Blaise wasn’t looking. Harry was pleased that it might work out for Blaise after all.

When Draco finally appeared again, he took a look around the room before snagging his bag and sprawling on the couch next to Harry. “So I guess I’m stuck helping you.”

Harry sent him a sweet smile and fluttered his lashes prettily. “If you would, please,” he said innocently.

Draco snorted, but got out his things. By the time lunch finally arrived, everyone was glad to put away the schoolwork and eat. The happily chattering group settled down to the table.

Harry hid his grin when he saw the new seating arrangement. The group had come to the table in pairs and they sat down at the table in those same pairs. Despite Draco arguing with him over his potions abilities, Harry was pleased when Draco had casually sat down next to him.

Lunch finished, everyone migrated back over to the seating in front of the fireplace. Harry flopped onto one of the couches face first, moaning into the cushions.

“Problems?” Draco drawled, pushing Harry’s feet aside to sit at the other end of the couch. Harry rolled over and looked at him.

“Unlike you, I’ve been up since 7:00 this morning,” Harry retorted. “I’m tired.”

“You should take a nap, Harry,” Hermione said in concern.

“But what are the rest of us supposed to do?” Pansy asked, glancing around at the room.

“I wish we had a chess set or something in here,” Draco whinged. “There’s nothing to do.”

Ron’s head perked up. “You play chess?”

Draco eyed him warily. “Yes. Do you?”

Ron grinned. “I’m the best in Gryffindor tower. It’s hard for me to find a challenging opponent anymore.”

“Draco’s the best in Slytherin,” Pansy spoke up. “He has the same problem.”

Harry double snapped his fingers and Dobby appeared.

“Dobby can help Harry Potter, sir?” Dobby asked with his wide smile.

Harry nodded. “Ron and Draco would like to play chess. Could you get their pieces and a board for them?”

Dobby disappeared without even answering but was quickly back, bearing the requested items.

“Thanks, Dobby.”

The others requested various items from Dobby and Harry was sound asleep before Dobby could return just minutes later with their things.


Harry opened his eyes and blinked blearily at his surroundings trying to remember where he was.

“Hey! It looks like Sleeping Beauty’s finally waking up,” Blaise said cheerfully.

Harry slowly smiled at him. “I thought Sleeping Beauty was supposed to be wakened with a kiss from a true love.”

“Yeah, well we already know I’m not your true love,” Blaise retorted.

Laughing, Harry sat up and looked around. Blaise looked like he was playing a rowdy game of exploding snap with Seamus. Harry’s eyes widened marginally when he saw Ron and Draco at the chess table, both of them staring intently at the chessboard between them but looking comfortable enough playing each other.

Glancing around again, he frowned. “Where are the girls?”

Seamus grinned. “Pansy and Millicent are giving Hermione a makeover. They’ve been locked in their room for ages now.”

“You’re kidding,” Harry said incredulously.

Blaise and Seamus both grinned and shook their heads. “Nope, not kidding,” Blaise said. “Pansy and Millicent were bored and managed to talk Hermione into it after a lot of begging and pleading.”

“I’m sure that’s been interesting,” Harry said, eying their door warily.

Blaise and Seamus nodded cheerfully before going back to their game. Ron and Draco were still ignoring their surroundings, completely focused on their chess strategies. Harry sat there for a few minutes debating as to what to do. Finally he got a wicked idea and made his way over to the workbench and started getting out supplies for brewing.

He wasn’t working long when there was a sudden shout of triumph. Looking up, Harry saw a grinning Draco and a sulking Ron.

“Good game, Weasley,” Draco said, without the sneering arrogance he would typically be showing in a situation like this.

Ron slowly smiled ruefully. “You play a good game of chess, Malfoy.”

“Thanks,” Draco said, some of his smugness returning to his tone. “But you do as well,” he admitted.

“I did win one of the games,” Ron said, his own voice sounding smug. “We’ll have to play another round of best out of three again sometime.”

Draco nodded his agreement of the idea. Looking around, they finally noticed the others and both started to see Harry awake.

“When did you wake up?” Ron asked.

Harry chuckled. “Not that long ago. You two were awfully focused on your game.”

“Yeah, well it was a tough game,” Ron defended.

Harry snorted. “Now that you’ve got a decent opponent, maybe I won’t have to sacrifice myself so often.”

“Hear, hear,” Blaise and Seamus sounded in agreement.

Harry was amused when Draco and Ron exchanged superior looks. Ron grimaced when he realized Harry was working on potions and went to go watch Blaise and Seamus instead. Draco, however, sauntered over to where Harry was working.

Leaning against the workbench, he gazed down into one of the cauldrons. “What are you brewing?” he asked curiously, looking around at the various ingredients, obviously not recognizing the potion.

“Lubrication potions,” Harry answered casually.


Harry smirked and Draco’s eyes widened as realization hit. He looked again at the two cauldrons Harry had going.

“Are you serious?” Draco breathed.

Harry grinned and nodded. “Figured I might as well stock up while I was here and had nothing better to do anyway.”

“What’s the difference?” Draco asked, obviously realizing that Harry had two different potions brewing.

“This one is more of a standard lubrication, slightly thicker,” Harry said, pointing at one of the cauldrons. “This one is thinner and is actually more of a massage oil,” he said, pointing at the other one.

Draco blinked and Harry noticed that his eyes were slightly glazed over. It gave Harry a little more hope. He decided to give Draco a little more information.

“The oil is actually a base,” Harry said casually, slowly stirring the simmering liquid. “It can be used by itself, but certain other ingredients can be added safely to flavor it. Personally I tend to like to add the strawberry flavoring, but I also like the hot cinnamon sometimes.”

Harry suppressed his grin as he watched Draco’s eyes go unfocused for several moments.

“Interested?” Harry asked.

“What?” Draco squawked.

Harry had to work extremely hard to suppress his grin this time. He innocently pointed at the cauldron. “I can give you a couple of vials of this when I’m finished, if you’d like.”

Draco swallowed audibly. “Sure.”

“So what flavor would you like?” Harry asked, licking his lips. “The results are awfully tasty.” Draco’s eyes dropped to Harry’s mouth, but he didn’t answer.


Draco’s eyes snapped back up to meet Harry’s green eyed gaze. “Um, strawberry is good,” he said, his voice sounding slightly strangled.

“Strawberry it is, then,” Harry said lightly. “Why don’t you help me with these?”

Draco nodded and began helping Harry prepare the ingredients. As they were finishing up, the girls finally reappeared. Millicent and Pansy had smug, pleased expressions as they came out.

“We present Ms. Hermione Granger,” Pansy announced.

Hermione stepped nervously out of the room and the boys all stopped what they were doing and stared. Her hair had been trimmed to shoulder length and it was far from bushy anymore. Her face was framed now by soft curls. She wasn’t wearing an abundance of makeup but what she was wearing suited her perfectly. A touch of eye shadow and mascara lengthening her lashes accented her eyes. Her lips glistened with a clear gloss.

She was wearing tight black jeans that hugged every curve and a bright red sleeveless silk shirt. She was still dressed casually in clothes that were fairly comfortable for her, but she looked different enough that the contrast was amazing. It was a far cry from the normal school robes.

“Wow,” Blaise breathed.

“Is that really you, Hermione?” Ron burst out.

Pansy and Millicent snorted as Hermione rolled her eyes.

“You still have no tact, Weasley,” Draco drawled, as Harry walked over to Hermione.

“You were already beautiful, now you’re downright gorgeous,” Harry declared with a grin.

She blushed prettily, but returned the grin. “You really think it looks all right?” she asked, fingering her hair.

Harry leaned back and studied her for a moment. “I think it really suits you,” he said finally.

“Pansy and Millicent helped show me some quick and easy ways so I can maintain the curls like this,” Hermione said. “You really don’t think I’m making myself look foolish?”

“We’ve already tried to convince her,” Millicent said, rolling her eyes.

“Maybe you can get through to her,” Pansy added.

Harry pulled her into a hug and whispered in her ear. “You do look different, but you still look like you,” he said reassuringly. “Whether you keep the look or not makes no difference on who you are. You’re beautiful either way.” He gave her an extra squeeze before releasing her.

“Thanks, Harry,” she said, smiling softly. Gaining more confidence with the encouraging words from one of her best friends, Hermione sashayed over to the seating area and casually sat down, crossing her legs.

“So now what are we doing?” she asked Harry innocently, fluttering her lashes slightly.

Harry was the only one to catch Blaise’s drooling expression as everyone stared at Hermione. Harry grinned and cleared his throat slightly, the sound effectively snapping Blaise out of his daze before anyone else caught him.

“Wow, what’d you say to her?” Pansy asked Harry, sounding highly impressed. “We’ve been trying to convince her all afternoon and here with just a few whispered words she’s Ms. Confidence all of a sudden.”

Harry winked at Hermione. “She’s been one of my best friends for seven years. I simply knew what she needed to hear.”

“Wait!” Ron exclaimed. “She’s also been one of my best friends all this time, but I haven’t the slightest clue what you could have said to her.”

“That’s because you still have no tact and you are always clueless,” Draco drawled.

“Hey!” Ron protested.

“It’s true,” Hermione said wryly, rolling her eyes. “Somewhere along the line Harry seemed to get a clue, but you’ve still failed to pick one up.”

“Thanks for making me look bad, Harry,” Ron muttered. He looked sheepish as the others broke out in laughter.

It was a cheerful group that sat down to dinner a short time later. The banter was friendly and everyone was having a good time.

The girls asked about what everyone else had been doing all afternoon. Ron and Draco explained how they’d discovered they were worthy chess opponents. Seamus and Blaise described how they’d had their own version of an exploding snap tournament most of the afternoon. Then much to the embarrassment of most of the others, Harry explained what potions he’d ended up brewing after he woke up from his nap.

Blaise and Harry ended up in a discussion regarding the flavorings that could be added to the massage oil. Despite supposed embarrassment, all of them listened in with interest, much to Blaise and Harry’s amusement.

After dinner they all retired back to the comfortable seating around the fireplace.

“So now what are we going to do?” Seamus asked, sounding bored.

“I think Harry should get some more booze from Snape’s office,” Blaise said.

“You know Snape’s going to kill me when he figures out just how much booze I’ll need to be replacing,” Harry said, although his tone sounded far more amused than worried.

“Better he kills you than me,” Blaise said cheerfully.

Harry snorted. “Like he’s going to think I’ve drank it all by myself.”

“Somehow I don’t think he’ll be surprised. He knows exactly which group of students is locked in his rooms,” Draco said. “Just go get the booze.”

Giving in, Harry dragged himself off the couch where he’d gotten comfortable and went to gather up more bottles and glasses as he’d done the night before. He’d have to make sure everyone had their own vials of the hangover potion so that he wouldn’t have to deal with that issue again in the morning.

“You know,” Harry remarked as he came back and started passing out glasses. “It’s a good thing for us that Snape keeps his liquor cabinet well stocked.”

He settled back onto the couch with a glass of scotch and looked around at the group. Draco was sitting at the other end of the couch. The three girls were currently whispering and giggling about something on the other couch. Ron, Seamus and Blaise were all sprawled comfortably in armchairs drinking their Firewhiskey.

Pansy spoke up suddenly. “I think we should play truth or dare.”

Chapter Text

Harry was suddenly pretty sure what the whispering and giggling had been about. “I’ll play, but with the condition that you can’t outright ask who we fancy,” he said, his tone suspicious.

His suspicions were confirmed when all three girls pouted at him. “You can’t put conditions on it,” Hermione protested. “That’s not how you play the game.”

Harry shrugged carelessly. “Then I don’t play.”

”Me neither,” Blaise added.

“Fine then,” Pansy said sulkily. “But anything else goes.”

Harry looked at her warily but agreed.

“Are the rest of you in?” Pansy asked. The other boys looked just as wary as Harry but they nodded their agreement.

“I’m starting,” Pansy declared. “All right, Harry, truth or dare.”

“Truth,” Harry said easily.

“Is it a professor that you fancy?” she asked. All three girls looked at him expectantly for his answer.

Harry stared for a moment before he burst out laughing. Their faces fell in disappointment. “You thought I fancied Snape,” he snickered.

“Well, it made sense,” Hermione reasoned. “You’re obviously a lot closer to him than any of us realized. Even Ron and I.”

“And he’s given you all his passwords and you know where everything is,” Pansy pouted.

“Blaise caught you coming out of his private chambers,” Millicent added.

“Yeah,” Blaise spoke up. “And you’ve refused to tell even me who it is.”

Harry chuckled. “That’s all true, but it does not add up to me fancying Snape. I fancy one of the students here at Hogwarts. Although I must admit, the man is hot,” he added with a waggle of his eyebrows.

Ron promptly turned that lovely, vile shade of green. Draco, Blaise and Seamus were staring at Harry incredulously. All three girls though, even Hermione, were nodding as dreamy expressions fell upon their features.

“Snape?” Blaise questioned, eyebrows raised.

Harry smirked. “Oh yeah, the man is sexy as hell. I never propositioned the man like you thought, but I never said it hadn’t crossed my mind before.”

“Yeah,” Pansy dreamily. “Tall, dark, and sexy.”

“Hermione?” Ron squeaked.

Hermione grinned at Ron’s discomfort. “What can I say? Harry and Pansy are right.” She turned to Harry. “I really did think it was Snape you fancied.”

Harry shrugged it off. “Hermione, truth or dare?”

“Truth—no, dare,” she said, changing her mind as she saw Harry smirking. Harry’s smirk didn’t falter when she switched.

“I dare you to tell Millicent about her cat second year,” Harry said. Ron guffawed loudly as Hermione started spluttering. If nothing else, the dare effectively brought Ron out of his funk about Harry finding Snape sexy.

“How would she know about my cat?” Millicent asked, confusion evident.

“Harry, that’s a truth, not a dare,” Hermione protested.

“It’s something he dared you to explain though,” Ron said, grinning broadly.

“I think it stands, Granger,” Draco smirked. “Besides, you actually said truth first anyway.”

Hermione shot all three boys a glare. “Fine, but just you wait, Harry Potter.”

Harry simply grinned and gestured for her to go ahead.

Hermione huffed. “We made a batch of Polyjuice potion so we could sneak into the Slytherin common room.”

”You made Polyjuice in second year?” Blaise asked, surprised.

“To sneak into the Slytherin common room?” Draco asked, just as astonished.

“Why?” Millicent asked. “And what does it have to do with my cat, of all things.”

Harry and Ron snickered, causing Hermione to glare at them yet again.

“Malfoy was getting all upset because everyone thought Harry was the heir of Slytherin. We thought he might be upset because he was actually the heir.”

“I’m flattered,” Draco drawled. “Do go on.”

Hermione transferred her glare to Draco. “Do shut up,” she snapped. Draco arched an eyebrow but remained silent.

“Everything was successful. Harry and Ron duped Crabbe and Goyle and each got one of their hairs to add to the potion,” Hermione explained. “I got one of Millicent’s hairs off her robe when we fought during the dueling club,” she muttered. “When we drank the potion, Harry and Ron changed successfully but I found out that I’d gotten a cat hair instead.”

Silence reigned for a few moments until astonished laughter broke out. “So you ended up turning into my cat?” Millicent asked, giggling.

Hermione nodded miserably. “I ended up in the infirmary for the next month until I turned back to normal. The potion is meant for people, not animals.”

“Wait a minute,” Draco said suddenly, turning to Harry. “So I really did lead you and Weasley into our common room, thinking you were Crabbe and Goyle?”

“Yep,” Harry said smirking.

Draco’s eyes narrowed in suspicion. “What’d you do while you were there?”

“Just talked,” Harry said as Ron snickered.

“About what?” Draco asked warily.

“Oh, we actually discussed the heir of Slytherin issue,” Harry said in mock innocence. “You may have discussed your drawing room while we there, too. I can’t quite remember.”

Draco stared at him in astonishment. “It was your fault my father got raided.”

“I didn’t do a thing.” Harry was still the picture of innocence. “There must have been an anonymous tip owled to the ministry.”

Draco finally chuckled. “My father was in a right state after that.”

“Bonus,” Harry smirked, finally dropping the innocent act.

“All right, Ron, truth or dare,” Hermione said dangerously. She’d had enough of that discussion. She couldn’t call back on Harry at the moment, but she could call out Ron.

Ron looked worried, and with good reason. “Truth, but just remember Harry was the one who dared you.”

“What actually happened that night last summer when you went out with Fred and George?”

Ron’s mouth dropped open, only to issue a sound of protest. She just arched her eyebrows and crossed her arms while waiting for his answer.

“Yeah, Ron,” Harry spoke up curiously. “You never would tell us what happened.”

Ron sighed in defeat. “Fred and George turned me into a puppy, put me on a leash and paraded me all around Diagon Alley for a couple hours,” he admitted. “It was awful, all these people petting me and telling me what a good dog I was. It wouldn’t have been so bad if they hadn’t had me on a leash.”

“Oh, that’s too funny,” Hermione laughed, tears rolling down her cheeks.

“I really do hate my brothers,” Ron muttered. He looked around the group. “Malfoy. Truth or dare.”

Draco debated briefly then finally said, “Truth.”

“What’s one of your more embarrassing moments?” Ron asked.

Draco groaned even as he glared at Ron for having asked that question.

“Yes, Mr. Vain,” Pansy asked, obviously suppressing laughter. “We’d like to hear.”

Draco shifted his glare to her. “It was your fault,” he snapped before gritting his teeth to answer the question. “Pansy ended up dying my hair red and gold without me realizing it.”

“Gryffindor colors?” Ron asked incredulously.

“I would have liked to have seen that,” Harry said with a grin.

Blaise practically cackled with glee. “You would have loved it.”

“He went around the common room for hours, never realizing,” Pansy giggled.

“Yeah, yeah, moving on,” Draco snapped. “Blaise, truth or dare.”

“Truth,” Blaise said in a resigned tone.

Draco narrowed his eyes. “How the fuck have you been sneaking Harry into the Slytherin dorms?”

Blaise and Harry both smirked at him, which Draco had pretty much expected. To his surprise though, Ron and Hermione started snickering.

“You two know how they’re doing it?” Draco asked them before Blaise could answer. “Even though you had no idea Harry’s been sneaking into the Slytherin dorms or that Blaise has been sneaking into Gryffindor?”

“Well, technically we don’t know for sure,” Hermione admitted, even though she was grinning at him.

“But we have a damn good guess,” Ron added cheerfully. He didn’t seem concerned with Harry giving away his secret. Rather, he seemed happy to know something that Draco didn’t.

Draco turned back to Blaise, glaring at him and expecting an answer.

“We’ve been using Harry’s invisibility cloak,” Blaise admitted.

Draco’s eyebrows shot up as he whipped his head to stare at Harry. “That’s how you’ve been sneaking around all these years, isn’t it?”

“Yep,” Harry said.

Draco rubbed a hand over his face, obviously trying to wrap his mind around all that was actually revealed by Harry having an invisibility cloak.

“Seamus, truth or dare?” Blaise asked, moving on.

“I’ll go with the flow. Truth,” Seamus said easily.

“What is it that you keep locked in your night stand?” Blaise asked.

Seamus gulped. “How do you know I’ve got anything locked in there?”

“I witnessed you arguing with Ron about it one night, and Harry won’t tell me what’s in there,” Blaise pouted.

“You’ve known what he was hiding in there all this time?” Ron shouted incredulously at Harry.

Harry smirked and nodded. “But it wasn’t my place to tell, and I doubt you really want to know anyway, Ron. Blaise will enjoy the answer, though.”

The curiosity in the group was steadily mounting with every word spoken. And with Harry’s last words everyone knew it would be something interesting if Ron would hate it and Blaise love it.

Seamus was blushing a furious red. “Harry?” he asked plaintively, asking for help out of the situation.

“Sorry, Seamus, you know the game,” Harry said, grinning wickedly at his friend.

“It implicates you, too,” Seamus snapped in irritation.

Harry shrugged. “Hey, I refuse to be embarrassed for enjoying myself.”

Seamus was still a bright red but he finally quirked his lips in a slight smile.

“So what’s in there?” Blaise asked eagerly.

“A vibrator,” Seamus admitted.

The group was gobsmacked. Seamus finally laughed, looking around at the stunned expressions.

“Who knew Gryffindors were such kinky little buggers,” Draco said into the silence.

Harry winked at him. “Slytherins aren’t allowed to have a monopoly on having fun.”

“Touché,” Draco drawled. He lifted his glass and they clinked glasses before drinking.

“You should see what other things Harry has,” Blaise piped up with a grin.

“Bloody hell!” Ron finally exploded. “Seamus is bad enough. I really don’t want to know what sex toys Harry has.”

“I do,” Draco and all three girls said immediately.

Harry laughed. “This was about Seamus, not me,” he protested. “Move on, Seamus.”

“Gladly,” Seamus said with relief even though he was grinning now at Ron’s embarrassment. “Pansy, truth or dare.”

She closed her eyes for a moment. “Truth, I suppose. After what Harry did to Hermione, a dare could just as easily become a truth anyway.”

“Mmmm,” Seamus debated his question. “I want to know what this punishment is all about that Harry was supposed to remind you of.”

The four Slytherins all paled slightly.

“Yeah, I still don’t understand that,” Ron said. “He never punishes you guys.”

Harry sat back, staying out of it. Ron, Hermione and Seamus were all studying the Slytherins curiously.

“He does punish us,” Pansy said ruefully. “We’re just not allowed to talk about it out of house.”

“Who would want to?” Millicent retorted.

“What in the world is your punishment?” Seamus asked.

“You know the torture chamber Filch is always going off about?” Pansy asked. The others nodded, wide-eyed. “Well, it really exists. If we screw up badly enough, Snape takes us aside later instead of taking house points or anything. We essentially get detentions that require us to scrub the room and clean and polish everything in there,” she finished with a shudder.

“It’s bloody awful,” Millicent added with her own shudder.

“Admittedly effective though,” Blaise said ruefully. “The place is creepy and, believe me, you want to be in that room as little as possible.”

Ron, Hermione and Seamus were looking horrified.

“How did you know about it?” Draco asked Harry.

“I did a few training sessions with Snape in that room. If I were to be captured, he wanted me to know what to expect, and he helped teach me ways that I could work to get myself out of trouble.”

“You’re kidding.”

“Nope,” Harry said.

“I don’t want to talk about that place anymore.” Pansy turned to her best friend.

“Truth,” Millicent said before being asked, just as eager as Pansy to move on to better topics.

“Have you ever considered dating anyone from one of the other houses?”

Millicent’s gaze flicked around the group. “Yes,” she answered quietly. She looked around the group again. “I think we should all answer that question.” They all answered yes, but they were looking around at each other with a new awareness.

They went through another round of truth questions, everyone getting happily drunk and enjoying themselves in the process. Eventually it came around and Hermione called on Harry.

“Truth or dare?” she asked Harry.

“Oh, I should be used to living dangerously. Give me a dare,” Harry declared.

Hermione gave him a malicious grin and Harry’s eyes widened. He’d forgotten until that moment that he’d started off by embarrassing Hermione with the cat story.

“I dare you to kiss Ron, at least ten seconds and with tongue,” she said, making sure to add her qualifications on the type of kiss.

“No bloody way!” Ron exclaimed. “He’s the one that made you tell that story.” He obviously remembered as well, and realized that she was punishing them both in one dare.

“Ah, come on, Hermione,” Harry pleaded.

“You heard the dare,” she declared. “Now you have to follow through.”

The Slytherins were eyeing Hermione with a new sense of respect. This was quite Slytherin behavior for the Gryffindor girl. They all turned to Harry.

“Fine,” Harry grumbled and rolled himself off the couch.

“You can’t be seriously planning on following through with this?” Ron squeaked.

Harry ignored him and crawled across the carpet to kneel before Ron’s chair, everyone watching him avidly.

Harry swiftly reached out and snagged a hand behind Ron’s head and pulled him forward, pressing his lips against Ron’s. Ron’s mouth parted in shock and Harry used it to his advantage, following through on the part of the dare that said he had to use tongue. Exactly ten seconds later Harry pulled away and both boys were spluttering.

“That was just so wrong,” Ron spat.

“Agreed,” Harry said in disgust.

They both got up and poured themselves more drinks, swishing the alcohol around in their mouths to use it like mouth wash.

The others were laughing hysterically. They all had tears rolling down their cheeks by the time Harry and Ron took their places again.

Harry lay down on the couch with his head near Draco’s leg and stared mournfully up at the still laughing blonde. “How come you didn’t save me?” Harry asked in a pitiful voice.

“Because I’m not a Gryffindor,” Draco choked out. “I don’t save people.”

Harry rolled over and buried his face in the cushions.

“Oh my god,” Hermione gasped. “I can’t believe you actually did it.”

Harry lifted his head enough to answer. “You’re the one who dared me to.”

“You’ve now kissed five of the Weasleys,” Blaise choked out through his laughter.

Harry and Ron both moaned pitifully, only causing the hysterical laughter to last longer.

“Ah, come here, lover boy,” Draco said, patting his lap. “I’ll do my best to protect you from any further indignities,” he said, snickering down at Harry.

Harry sniffled and shifted over until his head was resting on Draco’s lap. “Thank you,” he moaned.

“Oh, Merlin!” Pansy exclaimed, tears streaming down her cheeks. “He’s going to Draco for protection.”

“I’m just glad we’ve finally found something to humiliate Harry for a change,” Seamus said, the others nodding in agreement.

“Harry?” Ron moaned. “I’m never playing a game with Hermione ever again.”

“Same here, mate,” Harry returned.

Draco patted Harry’s head in sympathy.

Gradually the group settled down again, everyone wiping the tears of laughter from their cheeks. “You get to dare someone next,” Hermione eventually said to Harry.

Still lying on Draco’s lap, Harry glanced around the room, his eyes landing on Blaise. Harry quirked an eyebrow in question. Blaise’s eyes widened and he stared at Harry for a few moments before he finally nodded, swallowing hard.

That silent exchange effectively quieted any remaining snickers as heads swiveled between Harry and Blaise, trying to figure out what was going on.

“I dare you to kiss Hermione,” Harry said quietly.

All eyes widened as heads swiveled between Blaise and Hermione now. Hermione’s eyes were almost comically wide as she realized what the silent exchange must have meant.

“Me?” she squeaked.

Blaise nodded as he slowly made his way over to where she was sitting on the couch. The room was silent as Blaise cupped Hermione’s face in his hands and leaned over to give her a tender kiss.

“Give me a chance?” Blaise asked quietly when he pulled away.

Hermione stared up at him and slowly nodded her head. Blaise grabbed her hand and pulled her over to the chair where he’d been sitting. He sat down and tugged her onto his lap. She was blushing furiously and buried her face in his neck, but Blaise sent Harry a huge grin, obviously quite happy.

“Oh my,” Millicent breathed.

“Didn’t see that one coming,” Draco drawled.

“I did,” Harry said softly. “Congratulations, guys.”

Hermione lifted her head to stare at Harry. “How come you never told me?”

“Um, I was having too much fun with him myself?” Harry asked with a lopsided smile.

Hermione rolled her eyes. “I must admit, it seems awfully strange for me to want to go out with Blaise, knowing you’ve been buggering him for months.”

The others snickered quietly. “Does it bother you?” Harry asked seriously.

She looked at Blaise, who was watching her anxiously. “No,” she answered Harry before leaning in to kiss Blaise.

She turned back to Harry. “At least I already know he’s good in bed,” she said with a cheeky grin.

Blaise finally relaxed as laughter circled the group. “I swore him to secrecy,” he admitted to Hermione. “I really didn’t think I had a chance with you, but I talked to Harry about it, hoping he’d still be able to help somehow.”

“I haven’t actually known that long,” Harry admitted.

She laid her head on Blaise’s chest. “Well, it’s worked out now,” she said, sighing happily.

Harry looked over at Ron to see how he was taking this. “You all right with this?”

Ron nodded slowly. “I suppose so.” Then he suddenly grinned. “But don’t be coming to me now that you’ve lost your bed partner.”

Harry and the others were startled into laughter once again.

“I don’t know about everyone else, but I’m becoming quite afraid of playing any more truth or dare tonight,” Pansy suddenly declared.

“Ah, but it’s just been getting good,” Blaise pouted.

“That’s because you’re now all cozied up with the girl you wanted,” Pansy retorted.

Blaise grinned. “What’s your point?”

Harry let the banter wash past him and looked up at Draco. “Are you all right with Blaise and Hermione getting together?” he asked. Laying in Draco’s lap, it was easy to speak low enough for the others not to hear.

Draco sighed wearily. “You mean because of all the things I’ve called her over the years?”

Harry nodded. “I’ve seen the hesitations before you called her a mudblood lately . . . ," he trailed off.

Draco sighed again. “But I’ve made it very clear over the years that I don’t like muggleborns, I know. I still have a few issues with muggleborns in general, I must admit. But Granger’s a good witch. I’m happy enough for them.” Draco watched Blaise and Hermione bantering with the others, both of them obviously happy right where they were. Everyone was interested in the new couple and not paying any attention to Harry and Draco.

“I’m glad,” Harry said.

Draco looked back down at Harry. He threaded his fingers through Harry’s hair. “So we’ve finally figured out who Blaise fancies. Are we going to find out who you fancy?” Draco asked, his voice very soft.

Harry brought his hand up and trailed his fingers lightly across Draco’s abdomen. “Do you really want to know?” he whispered, staring into those amazing silver eyes that were starting to glaze over.

Draco nodded slowly.

Harry sat up and shifted closer. He leaned in and slowly pressed his lips against Draco’s. Both boys moaned softly at the first touch. Harry swiped his tongue along Draco’s lips, tasting him and wanting more. Draco answered Harry’s unspoken request and parted his lips, allowing Harry’s tongue entry into his mouth.

Harry swept his tongue through Draco’s mouth, tasting the scotch they’d both been drinking as well as the unique taste of Draco himself. He tasted and explored as his tongue slid across Draco’s, the contact sending bolts of sensation through both of them.

Draco wasn’t passive for long and his tongue searched out Harry’s. Harry invited Draco’s tongue into his own mouth to explore and Harry savored the feel of Draco’s tongue searching out every fine detail of his mouth.

Without parting lips, Harry moved to straddle Draco’s lap with Draco encouraging him and sliding his arms around Harry as Harry’s hands slithered up to twine in the silky strands of Draco’s hair.

Harry pushed Draco’s tongue back so that he could finish his own exploration and Draco willingly allowed it. Harry ran his tongue along the sharp edges of Draco’s teeth and slid across the roof of his mouth, smoothing over every ridge. Mouths temporarily explored, their tongues resumed a mutual dance, sliding against each other ritually and sparking passion with every movement.

Eventually Harry left the warmth of Draco’s mouth to trail kisses along Draco’s jaw. Draco arched his head back to allow Harry free access. Harry licked a path down Draco’s neck, eliciting a low moan from the other boy. Harry nipped and kissed his way back up, pausing to suckle at a spot that had made Draco groan in pleasure.

Draco was smoothing his hands up and down Harry’s back and moved one hand up to the back of Harry’s head, twining in Harry’s hair and effectively cradling Harry to his throat. Harry continued to nip and suck, marking Draco as his own. And from the gasps issuing from Draco’s lips, he indicated that he had no problem with being claimed.

“Oh gods, I want you,” Draco moaned.

Harry brought his lips back crashing down on Draco’s, making the kiss deep and passionate. Harry brought his hands down and began swiftly undoing the buttons on Draco’s shirt, even as Draco began working on Harry’s. It was only moments before they’d shrugged out of their shirts, their lips still engaged in a sensual dance of their own.

They did part lips when their chests made contact, the skin on skin contact forcing deep groans from their mouths. Draco latched onto Harry’s neck as Harry arched into Draco’s body. Draco began marking Harry as his, just as Harry had marked him.

“Yes,” Harry hissed.

He pushed his hips forward, pressing their erections together. Both boys groaned at the new sensations coursing through their bodies.

“Oh gods,” Draco moaned.

Harry rolled his hips, sparking pleasure and causing Draco to arch up into him in an attempt to create even more of the wonderful friction.

“Oh, please more,” Harry moaned.

Harry tugged on Draco’s hair, bringing Draco’s head up from his throat so that he could capture his lips again. They continued to rock their hips together until they released, smothering their cries with each other’s mouths.

Harry collapsed against Draco, burying his face in his neck as Draco buried his face into Harry’s hair, both of them attempting to catch their breath.

“Oh holy Merlin,” a voice breathed behind them, causing both boys to freeze in the realization that they were far from alone.

Chapter Text

Harry was fairly certain that had been Hermione’s voice.

He pulled away from Draco slightly and muttered a quick charm that cleaned them both up. He was thankful he was good enough at doing those without his wand. He looked at Draco, wondering how he was going to take this. A tentative first kiss had somehow progressed into a whole lot more—in front of six of their best friends. Not necessarily a problem as far as Harry was concerned, but it could be.

Draco slowly grinned. Harry grinned back. Giving Draco a quick kiss, Harry then moved to sit next to Draco instead of straddling his lap. Draco pulled Harry close, his arm wrapped around Harry’s waist, and Harry rested his head on Draco’s shoulder. They turned their gazes out to the others in the room.

Millicent, Pansy, Hermione, Blaise, Seamus and Ron. All completely gobsmacked. Every single one with glazed over eyes, including Ron.

“I do believe we’ve shocked them, Draco,” Harry said conversationally.

“I believe you’re correct, Harry,” Draco agreed.

“Do you think they’ve figured out that you’re the person I’ve been fancying?”

Draco looked at Harry. “That was quite an interesting way of answering my question, you know.”

Harry smirked. “It was more pleasurable than simply answering you with words.”

Draco nodded in acknowledgment, and they turned back to the others, waiting calmly for their reactions.

Ron was actually the first to find his voice. “I think I’ve had too much to drink and now I’m having hallucinations.”

That brought Hermione out of her daze somewhat. “Alcohol doesn’t cause hallucinations,” she snapped. “Alcohol does tend to cause people to lose their inhibitions, though,” she said, staring at Draco and Harry.

Blaise snorted. “I’m not sure either of them had any inhibitions to lose,” he said in amusement.

Harry and Draco both gave Blaise wicked grins. Nope, they weren’t exactly the shy types, despite the fact that Harry in particular had kept his activities hidden due to circumstances. Blaise was one of the few that knew Harry had been hiding rather than shy.

“That was one hell of a first kiss,” Seamus said, his tone almost as amused as Blaise, despite the fact that he was still shocked that it was Draco with Harry.

“Yeah, Draco,” Pansy spoke up. “I thought you didn’t even like boys.”

“You said you’ve never even kissed a boy before,” Millicent added.

Everyone looked to Draco for a response to that, including Harry. It was a valid issue as far as everyone was concerned.

Draco shrugged his free shoulder. “I said I’ve never found anyone who suited me with all the girls I’ve snogged. I’ve watched Harry for years and somewhere along the line last year I realized I was noticing how sexy he was.”

Everyone but Ron was nodding their heads. “Harry did grow into a hot young man last year instead of the scrawny little boy he had been,” Hermione admitted.

“I noticed all the girls watching him,” Draco admitted. “But it took me a while longer to realize that I was admiring him as well.”

Harry snickered. “I didn’t realize that I had turned into such a sexy stud.”

“Oh, but you have,” Pansy said seriously. “Now I want to know how two of the hottest guys in school have ended up together. Shush now and let Draco continue.”

Flabbergasted, Harry snapped his mouth shut, causing Draco to chuckle.

“Anyway, I spent a lot of time agonizing over the fact that I was attracted to my rival, let me tell you,” Draco said, laughter following his words. “Eventually I came to terms with that but it wasn’t like I could do anything about it,” he said somewhat bitterly.

Harry reached up and touched Draco’s cheek. “You still had a role to play. Snogging half the girls in the school was accepted behavior, while snogging boys was definitely not. Particularly me. Not proper pureblood behavior and it would’ve put your life in even more danger, from your father especially.”

Draco took Harry’s hand in his. “Exactly. I didn’t even dare to experiment with any boys. Although I might have if I’d realized there was a possible willing participant in my own dorm all this time,” he said with a glare directed at Blaise.

Blaise laughed and held his hands up. “It’s not my fault. Remember, Harry’s the one that attacked me.”

“It’s all right because Harry’s the one I really wanted anyway,” Draco said softly.

Harry lifted his head to receive the tender kiss Draco bestowed upon him.

“Harry, you’ve got to stop trying to turn all the boys away from us girls,” Pansy declared with a glare.

“I didn’t know that’s what I was doing,” Harry said, laughing.

“I suppose now I understand why you wouldn’t tell me who it was you fancied,” Blaise said to Harry.

Harry nodded. “When it comes down to it, I never thought I’d have any kind of chance. We’ve fought for years and Draco didn’t even like boys,” he added wryly.

“I wonder if you two were actually meant for each other all along,” Millicent finally spoke up.

“I agree,” Hermione said slowly. “I swear. Thinking about it, you two have been engaging in foreplay for years.”

Surprised laughter erupted in the room.

“Is that what we’ve been doing all this time?” Harry asked Draco, his amusement clear.

“You must admit there’s been a lot of passion between us over the years,” Draco said, amused as well.

“So I really did just watch these two get off on each other?” Ron asked suddenly.

More laughter circled the group.

“I’m afraid so, Ron,” Hermione answered him. Ron looked ill.

“So how come you didn’t stop them,” Seamus asked in amusement. “You stopped Harry fooling around with Blaise easily enough last night.”

“I couldn’t,” Ron admitted.

“You couldn’t?” Blaise asked incredulously, clearly not believing that answer.

“It was like watching an accident. You know it’s bad but you have to look anyway,” Ron explained, still looking slightly queasy. “Besides, I’m not sure I could get my brain to actually believe it was happening. Harry and Malfoy,” he said, shaking his head. “It just couldn’t have been actually happening. And directly in front of me, no less.”

“How come none of the rest of you stopped us?” Harry asked with a knowing smile.

“Because you are bloody hot together!” Pansy exclaimed.

“I’ve never seen anything so hot in my life before,” Hermione admitted.

“Harry, I agree with Seamus. Other activities aside, that was one hell of a first kiss,” Blaise said seriously. “You’ve sure as hell never kissed me like that and I’d be the first to admit that I thought we were pretty good together. Whatever we had doesn’t even compare to you two together.”

“I didn’t think that first kiss was ever going to end and, by the time it did, there was no way in hell I was going to stop you as things progressed,” Seamus declared. The others were nodding in agreement.

Harry looked up at Draco through his lashes. “So they were obviously happy enough. Are you satisfied with your first kiss from a boy?”

Draco moaned at the look Harry was giving him and tilted Harry’s chin to kiss him. It was a languid kiss as they enjoyed the pleasure of the moment.

“Don’t you start again,” Ron snapped.

They broke apart and smirked at Ron.

“I must admit I can’t believe you guys went so far with us in the room,” Hermione said.

“I probably would have done it anyway, but it was most likely the alcohol that made me completely forget you guys were even here,” Harry admitted.

“Once we first touched, I was totally lost,” Draco agreed.

“And you never care who’s in the room anyway,” Pansy snorted.

Draco smirked. “No, I don’t.”

“Merlin, you two really were made for each other!” Seamus exclaimed.

“So are you two a couple now?” Ron asked, bemused by this whole turn of events. He looked more confused than ill now. “You and Malfoy?”

“Um, we haven’t exactly discussed it,” Harry said somewhat sheepishly.

Blaise snickered. “You did say if you got the opportunity to be with the one you wanted, you’d take it in a heartbeat.”

“Yeah, snogging him while he was agreeable to the idea seemed more important than discussing whether we’d be a couple or not,” Harry retorted.

Draco sniggered. “I quite agree with Harry on that point.”

“So are we a couple now?” Harry asked, looking up at Draco through his lashes again.

“Yes,” Draco answered softly. Harry lifted his head to kiss Draco. A sweet, tender kiss sealing their agreement to this new relationship.

“Awwww,” the girls cooed.

“You two belong to each other,” Millicent sighed.

“You’ve always been a player, Draco,” Pansy said seriously. “Are you really going to settle into a relationship with Harry?”

“Yes,” Draco answered, his tone soft but serious. He looked down at Harry. “I just wasn’t with the one I wanted before.”

Harry rewarded him with a passionate kiss. He plundered deep into Draco’s mouth, claiming Draco as his own. He would have climbed back into Draco’s lap, but the others shouted out to stop them.

“What?” Draco growled, glaring at them. Harry wasn’t looking any happier than Draco at being interrupted.

The glares the two boys were sending weren’t having any effect on their friends, though. They shook their heads in exasperation.

“Can’t you two keep your pants on for at least a little while?” Pansy snapped in annoyance.

“Why should we?” Draco said, clearly frustrated.

“Because much as I enjoyed watching you once already tonight, I don’t particularly want to watch you again. It’s not like I have anyone, and I don’t need to be any more sexually frustrated than I already am.”

“So go kiss Seamus,” Harry retorted.

The chuckles that had started at Pansy’s words were abruptly silenced with Harry’s suggestion.

Pansy and Seamus both blinked at Harry.

Harry rolled his eyes. “I think Millicent should go kiss Ron, too,” he added. More owlish eyes were blinking at Harry.

Draco had been as astonished as the others at first but then he latched onto the idea. “Yeah,” he said to his friends. “Go get your own Gryffindors. Blaise and I already have ours.”

Harry and Blaise were snickering, and Hermione was giggling from her position on Blaise’s lap.

“You’re serious,” Pansy breathed.

“Of course I’m serious,” Harry said in exasperation. “I’ve been watching you guys check each other out all day when you thought no one else was looking.”

“When did you become so observant?” Hermione asked, her curiosity peaked. “And how come I didn’t notice? I’m normally the one who notices these things.”

“You were too busy trying to sneak peaks at Blaise,” Harry said, causing Hermione to blush. “And I’ve already been watching Draco for years. I took a little time off to watch the rest of you today,” he retorted.

That brought the laughter back into the room.

Pansy turned to eye Seamus contemplatively. Seamus grinned at her. She flounced over to Seamus’ chair and plopped down onto his lap. A second later and they were kissing.

They parted lips and Pansy turned to look at Harry and Draco. “Fine then,” she said haughtily.

Seamus’ grin couldn’t have possibly gotten any wider. “Thanks, Harry.”

Harry grinned back at him. “No problem, mate.”

Everyone turned to look at Millicent and Ron expectantly, both of whom were blushing furiously, yet staring at each other intently.

Hermione sighed. “You’ll have to go to him if you want him,” she said to Millicent. “He’ll never make a move himself.”

Ron glared at Hermione but Millicent seemed to take comfort from Hermione’s words. She certainly didn’t flounce but she got up and slowly crossed over to Ron’s chair. “May I sit here?” she asked politely.

Ron swallowed audibly and nodded, holding his arms open in invitation. Millicent settled into his lap and Ron wrapped his arms around her, pulling her closer. They shared a tentative first kiss then settled in together comfortably, obviously content with the new arrangement despite the fact that they were both still blushing furiously.

The group was silent for several long moments as they all gazed at each other in these new pairings.

“I can’t say I saw any of this coming,” Draco drawled.

Ron was the one to respond to Draco’s comment. “I don’t think anyone saw it besides Harry.”

The others chuckled. “You do seem to have become quite the little matchmaker, Harry,” Hermione commented.

“I didn’t exactly plan all this,” Harry protested.

Draco snorted. “But you knew more than the rest of us.”

Harry shrugged. “When I figured out we were going to be locked in here for a couple of days, I must admit I was happy I was going to be able to spend some real time closer to you,” he said, looking up at Draco.

Then he looked over at Blaise and Hermione. “I also hoped that things might work out for Blaise. Being forced into such close quarters, Blaise would have the chance for Hermione to get to know him a little. I had hopes.” He shrugged. “And then today, with all of us being so close, everyone’s been checking each other out. I just encouraged everyone a little bit.”

“I wasn’t happy with this lockdown at all in the beginning,” Hermione said, most everyone nodding in agreement aside from Harry and Blaise. “I thought we’d all kill each other before we’d ever get out again, but things have turned out far better than I ever expected.”

Draco chuckled. “I agree that I thought we’d all kill each other. As Slytherins and Gryffindors we’ve never gotten along in any remote sense.” He cast a glance down at Harry. “With the exception of Harry and Blaise, as we’ve learned,” Draco added wryly. Harry gave him a cheeky grin.

“I hated the idea of being locked in here with a group of Slytherins,” Ron said quietly, his arms visibly tightening around Millicent in reassurance. “Harry’s been working on me for ages, trying to get me to understand that Slytherins aren’t all bad. He’s finally convinced me of that, but I still placed Malfoy in a different category.”

“With good reason,” Draco admitted quietly. “I’ve never given you any reason to treat me with anything more than contempt. I owe all of you an apology for the way I’ve treated you over the years.” He nodded to Ron, then Hermione and Seamus, before looking at Harry.

Harry simply smiled and offered Draco a tender kiss in forgiveness.

Ron, Hermione and Seamus were staring at Draco in astonishment. Ron was blinking furiously as he attempted to comprehend that Draco Malfoy had just apologized to him.

Hermione finally smiled. “I’m sorry, too. It’s time to put all that in the past where it belongs,” she said quietly.

Draco returned her smile and nodded in acknowledgment. Looking over at Seamus, who was grinning like a maniac, Draco simply shook his head ruefully. It wasn’t so much a problem between the two of them anyway. Finally, Draco turned to look at Ron again.

Ron snapped out of it and sighed. “Harry already made it clear to me this morning that I needed to apologize to you. I admit that I don’t exactly understand everything, but I’m honestly sorry for a lot of the things I’ve said.”

Draco nodded in acceptance, feeling it best not to actually say anything. They were all uncomfortable enough as it was.

“Well, I’m happy where I’m at now, even though I never expected to end up here,” Pansy declared cheekily, squirming in Seamus’ lap.

That broke the tension that had built up. By unspoken agreement, they all took the opportunity to kiss their new partners.

“I never thought I’d end up with a Slytherin girlfriend, but I must admit I’m sure glad things have turned out the way they have,” Ron said quietly, smiling at Millicent.

“Me too,” she said softly.

Draco grimaced. “How did we all actually end up with Gryffindors?” he asked, sounding bemused as the reality of the situation sunk into his brain.

Harry grinned. “It’s because we’re irresistible.”

Draco shook his head, but he returned the grin. “You know we’re going to completely shock the rest of the school, don’t you?”

Harry shrugged. “I know, but I’m all right with it as long as you are. Like I’ve said, I really just don’t care anymore. My duties are fulfilled and I get to live my life however I choose now.”

Draco groaned in sudden realization. “Oh, Merlin! I’m dating Harry bloody Potter!”

Hysterical laughter broke out amongst all of them as Draco moaned pitifully. “It won’t just be all over school. It’ll be headline news in all the papers.”

Tears began rolling down Harry’s cheeks as he clutched his stomach, he was laughing so hard.

“Slytherins dating Gryffindors is bad enough. But I’m Draco Malfoy and you’re Harry Potter. How could this have happened?”

His dramatics weren’t being taken seriously, despite the fact that everyone knew that there was some reality to what Draco was saying. The dramatization was putting stitches in everyone’s sides though, as they laughed at his antics.

“Oh, but who’s the catch in this relationship?” Draco asked. “I am bloody gorgeous, you know,” he said with a toss of his head. “And I’m a Malfoy.”

No one else could say a word through their laughter. Draco looked at Harry. “But you are bloody gorgeous, too,” he declared. “And you’re the savior of the Wizarding world. That does make you quite the catch. I’d say we both win.”

Harry simply nodded through his laughter.

“Since we’re obviously meant for each other, everybody else is just going to have to deal with it,” Draco announced. He leaned back into the couch and lapsed into silence. His expression was one of supreme satisfaction.

Gradually the others started to calm down.

“To hell with you dating Draco Malfoy,” Ron choked out. “You’re dating a bloody drama queen.”

Harry, who had just managed to calm down some, started laughing yet again. Draco glared haughtily at Ron, but refrained from comment. Harry wiped the tears from his face. “Maybe, but now he’s my drama queen.”

“Better you than me, mate,” Ron said, shaking his head in mock sympathy.

Harry turned back to Draco, only to find him staring intently.

“I think I like the idea of being yours,” Draco whispered. Harry’s breath hitched at the intensity of Draco’s gaze, as well as the words he spoke.

Harry suddenly jumped up from the couch, pulling Draco up with him. Tugging Draco along with him, Harry headed for the ‘Slytherin dorm’, only detouring slightly to snag a couple vials still sitting on the workbench.

Chapter Text

“I guess I’ll just sleep in Harry’s bed tonight,” Blaise yelled as Harry and Draco slipped into the makeshift dorm room. Harry and Draco ignored him, as well as all their other friends.

They quickly got out their wands and set strong locking and silencing charms. This wasn’t a time they wanted to share with the others.

Wands were tossed to the floor as the two latched onto each other, arms encircling each other as mouths met in a bruising kiss. As if they’d forgotten what they’d learned not that long ago, tongues explored each other’s mouths. Tasting, exploring, reveling in the sensations created.

Suddenly Harry pushed Draco away from him, both whimpering from the loss of contact.

“I want to see you,” Harry said in a low, seductive tone and Draco nodded fervently in agreement. They’d already stripped their shirts earlier and neither had even worn shoes or socks for the entire day with the plush carpet the girls had created. It only took moments for them to quickly shed trousers and boxers.

Harry raked his eyes over Draco’s nude form hungrily. A pleased smirk crossed his face when he realized that Draco was studying his body just as keenly. Harry advanced on the other boy, gently pushing on his chest and urging Draco backwards to his bed.

When the back of his knees hit the bed, Draco sat and slithered backwards to lie against the pillows. Harry stood there for several long moments staring down at Draco’s beautiful body.

“In my wildest fantasies, I never thought I’d ever actually be here like this in reality,” Harry whispered.

“Me neither,” Draco said just as quietly. “Now come here.”

Harry got a wicked grin on his face and he turned abruptly. Spotting the vials on the floor where he’d dropped them, he picked them up and then crawled up onto the bed. Without touching any other part of Draco’s body, Harry leaned over and kissed Draco deeply for a few moments before pulling away again.

“Turn over,” Harry said, giving Draco a nudge. “I’m going to give you a massage.” Draco whimpered and did as Harry asked, rolling over onto his stomach.

Harry swallowed hard before moving to straddle Draco’s hips, his hard length settling into the crease of Draco’s arse. Both of them moaned with need at the contact and all its implications of what was to come.

Taking a couple of deep breaths in an attempt at calming himself, Harry poured some of the strawberry flavored oil he’d created earlier in the day. The oil flowed down Draco’s spine and Harry was momentarily mesmerized by the sight until Draco shifted beneath him. Harry’s breath hitched at the movement of Draco’s hips and he took a couple more deep breaths before he could focus on Draco.

Spreading both hands wide, Harry slid them up the long expanse of Draco’s back. His skin was creamy and soft and the oil caused his skin to glisten in the light. Kneading firmly, Harry felt the muscles beneath his hands slowly ease until Draco was completely relaxed and pliant beneath him.

Harry leaned forward and ran his tongue along the upper portion of Draco’s spine, licking his way to the nape of the blonde’s neck. The blonde hair brushed at Harry’s cheeks as Harry nibbled and kissed around to Draco’s ear. “Mmmm, strawberry. Turn over,” he whispered, nipping at Draco’s ear.

Draco moaned and Harry shifted so Draco could roll onto his back again. Harry nudged Draco’s knees apart and knelt between them. He wasn’t so sure he could handle this when he gazed down into grey eyes glazed with undeniable desire. For Harry. They’d just have to explore more with the strawberry oil some other time.

He knew that his own eyes were reflecting that same desire back to Draco. But Harry’s eyes also held a question.

“Are you positive about this?”

Draco nodded. “You claimed I was yours, now make it true.”

Harry groaned in anticipation of what the words meant. He settled himself against Draco, their erections pressing hotly together as he claimed Draco’s mouth once again.

“Oh gods, Harry,” Draco breathed.

“I know,” Harry said, panting heavily.

Harry slowly slid down Draco’s hard body, kissing, licking, and nipping as he went. He paused to lave attention on hard nipples, reveling in the sounds he was pulling from Draco’s throat.

Sliding his tongue across taut stomach muscles, Harry paused again to thrust his tongue in Draco’s navel, eliciting mewling cries that made Harry wonder once again if he was going to last.

Harry nibbled at hipbones briefly before suddenly taking Draco’s cock deep into his throat in one smooth motion. Draco’s hands tangled tightly in Harry’s hair and his hips arched off the bed as he let out a keening cry. Harry allowed Draco to fuck his mouth, watching Draco through his lashes and thoroughly enjoying the pleasure etched on Draco’s features, as well as the incoherent ramblings issuing from his lips. It wasn’t long before Harry was swallowing every last drop of Draco’s release.

Draco collapsed bonelessly back into the pillows and Harry dropped his forehead to rest against Draco’s hipbone, breathing heavily himself and desperately willing himself to calm down. Feeling a tug on his hair, Harry looked up at Draco.

Draco gave him a languid smile. “That was incredible,” he said on a sigh.

“Still want to continue?” Harry asked, smiling up at him.

Draco nodded and, picking the other vial up off the bed, he held it out to Harry. As Harry accepted the vial, Draco bent his knees so his feet were flat on the bed and willingly spread his legs further apart.

Harry groaned deeply at the sight of Draco spread out before him. “I want you so bad.”

Draco locked eyes with Harry. “So take me.”

Harry moaned again. Slicking his fingers first, he leaned over again to kiss Draco slowly yet deeply. His lips never leaving Draco’s, he slid his fingers along the crease of Draco’s arse, rubbing lightly over the puckered opening, massaging gently. Draco had tensed slightly at first, but as he moaned at discovering the new sensation, Harry slid a finger inside.

Harry continued to kiss Draco, his tongue slowly sliding in and out of Draco’s mouth, giving Draco something to focus on. Harry’s method was working, and Draco relaxed almost immediately. Sliding his finger in and out a few times, Harry added a second, still mimicking the actions with his tongue.

Swirling his tongue around Draco’s mouth, Harry slowly began scissoring his fingers, stretching and pumping his fingers in and out of Draco’s arse.

Draco began pushing his hips back. “More,” he breathed against Harry’s lips.

Harry pulled back so he could see Draco. Draco let out a keening cry when Harry’s fingers brushed across his prostate. Harry smiled in satisfaction as he gazed intently at the picture of pure pleasure on Draco’s face.

“Oh gods, please, more,” Draco babbled, and Harry brushed across that sweet spot several more times. He added a third finger almost effortlessly, Draco’s attention focused on the intense sensations coursing through his body.

Through half lidded eyes, liquid silver with desire, Draco watched intently as Harry slicked his weeping erection. Draco’s own cock was leaking onto his stomach.

Harry braced one hand behind Draco’s knee and lined up his cock with his other hand. He locked eyes with Draco, who nodded at him slightly. Pushing forward, Harry breached Draco’s body, the head of his cock slipping past the tight ring of muscle.

Draco tensed for a few moments but Harry was pleased when Draco didn’t wince in pain. He leaned over and gave Draco a passionate kiss and slowly inched forward until he was buried balls deep in Draco’s arse. Harry continued to kiss Draco until he relaxed completely and began pushing back.

“You feel so amazingly good,” Harry moaned.

“Fuck me, Harry,” Draco said, the sound close enough to his usual drawl, but laced through with desire. Harry wanted to come simply from those words spoken with that voice.

Sitting up rather than lying draped across Draco’s body, Harry got a good grip on Draco’s thighs. He pulled back several inches then pushed forward, angling where he was fairly positive he would hit Draco’s prostate.

The keening cry issuing from Draco’s mouth let Harry know he’d hit his mark. Keeping that angle, Harry set forth a steady rhythm, his own grunts and groans mingling with the sounds of Draco’s moans and incoherent rambling.

Draco’s hands were fisting in the blankets, twisting them endlessly. The faster Harry moved, the harder Draco’s fingers twisted in the blankets.

“Harry, please,” Draco moaned.

Reaching forward, Harry grasped Draco’s cock firmly. His hand was slightly slick still and slid easily up and down Draco’s erection in time to the thrusts of Harry’s cock thrusting in and out of his arse. With a final scream of Harry’s name, Draco shot forth pearly streams across his chest and abdomen.

The sight of Draco’s release along with the rhythmic clenching of the muscles surrounding his cock, Harry thrust one final time and shot his own release deep inside Draco as he shouted Draco’s name.

Harry collapsed on top of Draco, feeling completely and totally drained. They lay there for several minutes without moving before Draco nudged at Harry. Harry shifted so that he was lying at Draco’s side and muttered the cleaning charm, effectively clearing away any stickiness.

“We’re lying on top of our blankets,” Harry murmured sleepily into Draco’s chest where his head was pillowed.

Draco laughed quietly in surprise. “I’m not sure what I expected you to say, but that wasn’t it,” he admitted.

“You were expecting something more along the lines of that was absolutely incredible and it all feels so right for me with you?” Harry suggested.

“Mmmm,” Draco murmured. “That sounds like how I’m feeling.”

Accio blanket,” Harry murmured sleepily, pointing his hand at Blaise’s bed.

Draco helped to settle the blanket around them before wrapping his arms around Harry again. Within moments they were both sound asleep.


Once again, Harry was being shaken awake. And once again it felt like his head was going to explode and his stomach was roiling. This hangover thing was getting old fast.

“Harry Potter, sir. Wake up,” Dobby squeaked.

“Go away, Dobby,” Harry grumbled.

“Harry Potter must wake up. Breakfast is served and Dobby has a message from Professor Dumbledore, sir.”

“Can you turn him off?” Draco grumbled beneath Harry.

Harry opened his eyes in surprise and stared into grey eyes bleary with sleep. Harry blinked. As the memories of the night before came rushing back, he slowly smiled, receiving a soft smile in return.

“Is Harry Potter awake now, sir?” Dobby squeaked again, causing both boys to groan.

“What’s the message, Dobby?” Harry asked, relenting to the inevitable.

“Parchment is on the table with breakfast.”

“Fine, I’m up,” Harry grumbled and Dobby disappeared.

Harry slowly sat up, clutching his throbbing head and his roiling stomach. Draco was doing the same.

“Where are those potions?” Draco asked.

“I think I left them on the workbench,” Harry said. “I wasn’t exactly interested in those potions when I was snagging vials last night.”

“Yeah, me neither,” Draco admitted.

Slowly they got out of bed and went to retrieve the potions, slipping their trousers on from the night before. Mutual sighs of relief were released once the potions had been downed. Draco went to the loo and Harry went to retrieve the parchment with Dumbledore’s message.

Harry skimmed over the message. Basically it said that things were just about cleared up and they should be able to release everyone sometime later that afternoon. He also said that he hoped everything had gone well and asked them to please put the room back to rights after they had their lunch.

Harry snorted as he looked around at the room thinking about that last part. The room was barely recognizable as the potions classroom. They’d been in their own little world the last couple of days and Harry was feeling kind of sad that they were going to have to let it go.

He handed the letter to Draco so that he could read it for himself and made his own trip to the loo. Returning to their common room, he found Draco sitting at the table eating breakfast.

“Figured I might as well eat since I was here anyway,” Draco said with a shrug.

Harry joined him and they quietly ate their breakfast.

“I’m going to miss this,” Harry spoke up finally.

Draco looked over at him. “Yeah, me too,” he admitted. “I don’t feel like going back out there.”

“Do you regret this?” Harry asked, waving a hand between the two of them.

Draco smiled. “Not at all.”

Harry gave a small smile. “Are you really all right with us being a couple?” he asked, still feeling morose. “I know you were joking last night, but I am Harry bloody Potter. It’ll be a nightmare when the press finds out. Do you really want to subject yourself to that?”

Draco grabbed his hand and squeezed it lightly. “Harry, I must admit that I’m still getting used to this, but I do know what I’m getting myself into. I mean, bloody hell, I contributed to some of your bad press in years past.”

Harry chuckled. “You’ve got a point there.”

“Of course I’ve got a point.”

Harry shook his head with a wry smile. It was going to be interesting learning to live with Draco’s arrogance.

Draco leaned over and kissed Harry languidly. “We’ll face the mob together,” Draco spoke softly against Harry’s lips.

“All right,” Harry breathed.

“I think we should go back to bed.”

Harry nodded and stood up, dragging Draco up with him, but then he suddenly paused and shot a wicked grin at Draco.

“You want to know what one of my recurring fantasies has been?”

Draco quirked an eyebrow in question.

“I’ve fantasized about fucking you in the potions classroom,” Harry admitted. “But the effect isn’t exactly the same at the moment, what with all the changes we made in here.”

Draco’s eyes narrowed in suspicion. “What exactly are you proposing?”

Harry’s gaze shifted to the door to Snape’s office and Draco’s eyes widened in dawning realization.

“He’d kill us both if he found out,” Draco exclaimed incredulously.

Harry smirked at Draco and shrugged that casual shrug that stated he couldn’t care less. “He probably would,” Harry admitted. “But when else are we going to have such an opportunity?”

Draco glanced around the room, looking from the doorway of Snape’s office to the doorways of their makeshift dorms and back to Harry. A slow smirk made its way onto Draco’s face.

“Would this be one of the hazards of dating a Gryffindor?” Draco asked. “Jumping foolishly into a situation that could get them killed?”

Harry smirked. “No, this would be one of the advantages of being a Slytherin. Taking advantage of an opportunity when it arises.”

Draco arched an eyebrow. “You have a point there.”

“Of course I’ve got a point,” Harry smirked, parroting Draco’s earlier words back to him.

Draco narrowed his eyes. “I think I’m going to make you an honorary Slytherin.”

Harry laughed. “Sure, as long as you let me fuck you in Snape’s office.”

Draco’s eyes glazed to that smooth liquid silver Harry loved. “Go get the lube,” he demanded.

Harry snagged the vials from the other room before returning and muttering the password to let them into Snape’s office. With any luck, none of the others would wake up soon and interrupt them. Entering, Harry put up a silencing charm and didn’t have to worry about locking charms this time.

They quickly shed their trousers and Draco hopped up to sit on the desk, with Harry moving to stand between his legs. Already hard, they both groaned when their erections rubbed against one another. They kissed passionately even as Harry laid Draco back on the desk, and Draco’s legs wrapped around Harry’s waist to keep Harry in contact.

Fumbling for the vial of lubricant, Harry quickly yet thoroughly prepared Draco before sliding into the velvety warmth of Draco’s body. Draco’s legs were again wrapped tightly around Harry’s waist as his hands gripped at the edge of the desk, using it for leverage to push back against Harry.

Harry’s thrusts were angled to slam against Draco’s prostate, eliciting the mewling cries from Draco that Harry was loving so much. Reaching between them to stroke Draco’s erection brought about one of the keening cries and moments later Draco was screaming out Harry’s name. A final thrust and Harry came as well, crying out Draco’s name.

After they caught their breath, they exchanged slow, languid kisses for several minutes before cleaning up and getting dressed again. Not a difficult task since they’d only been wearing their trousers to start with.

“I could get used to this,” Draco said.

“Used to what exactly?” Harry laughed. “Because we’re not ever having sex in Snape’s office again.”

Draco smirked at him. “No, although that has been interesting,” he said with a glance around the office. “Sex in a forbidden area does have its appeal.”

Harry nodded in agreement. “But if that’s not it, then what is it you could get used to?”

“Being on the bottom,” Draco admitted.

Harry smirked. “It is nice, isn’t it? Although it’s good from this side too.”

Draco looked at him curiously. “Which do you prefer?”

Harry shrugged. “I like both, depending on my mood.”

“What do you mean?” Draco asked, sensing more meaning in Harry’s words.

“I gather you want the deeper meaning, rather than just that both are enjoyable?” Harry asked. At Draco’s nod Harry tried to explain. “Sometimes I like to top because it gives me control over something in my life. I’ve not always had a whole lot of control over what happens to me. Other times, particularly when things are getting too much for me to handle, I like to bottom precisely because I can give up that same control to someone else.”

Draco was studying him thoughtfully. “I can handle that,” he said after a few moments.

Harry smiled. “So do you feel up to taking a shower with me?”

“Sounds like a plan,” Draco said, raking his eyes down Harry’s body, still clad only in his trousers.

Leaving Snape’s office, there still didn’t appear to be anyone else awake. They showered together but made it quick, considering that very soon there were several more people that were going to be wanting in the room.

They ended up settling onto one of the couches, Draco lying on his back with Harry half sprawled on top of him. Harry snuggled into Draco’s warmth.

“I’m tired, Draco,” Harry murmured sleepily.

“Go to sleep then,” Draco whispered, stroking the soft strands of Harry’s hair.

“You gonna sleep, too?” Harry mumbled, almost asleep already.

“Mmmm hmmm,” Draco answered.

They were sound asleep in each other’s arms when the others finally awoke.

Chapter Text

“Mr. Potter and Mr. Malfoy,” Snape shouted, waking them up.

From the sound of his voice, Harry had to wonder how long he’d been trying to wake them. He blinked furiously up at the potions professor.

“Hey, Snape, you’re back,” he said casually, if a bit blearily, considering he’d just woke up.

Snape’s eyes narrowed. “You will address me properly. Despite the unusual circumstances, we are still in the classroom, not my office.”

Harry felt Draco shifting slightly underneath him and had to work very hard to suppress his grin.

“Yes, sir,” Harry said, his grin emerging anyway.

Snape’s eyes narrowed even further. “Get up,” he demanded.

Despite the urge to scramble quickly, Harry slowly sat up, freeing Draco to do the same. He glanced around the room. Their six friends were all staring wide-eyed at the situation. Harry didn’t have any idea what time it was, but obviously they’d thought that they had more time to wake Harry and Draco before Snape arrived.

The room itself was back to normal already with the exception of the couch that they’d been sleeping on. All the partitions were down, beds were gone, and workbenches, stools, and Snape’s desk back in place. The carpet was gone and it was back to the cold, stone floors. It was freezing underneath their bare feet and Harry and Draco both tucked their feet back up underneath them.

In spite of fearing punishment from her Head of House, Pansy stepped forward to hand both Harry and Draco their shoes and socks.

“Thanks, Pansy,” Harry said easily as Draco nodded at her.

“You’re welcome,” she said quietly before stepping back out of the line of fire.

Snape arched an eyebrow at the interaction. “What exactly is going on here, Potter?” he sneered.

“Draco and I are getting our shoes and socks on, sir, because the floor is freezing cold,” Harry explained. “When we fell asleep the floor was covered in plush carpet.”

Both eyebrows were arched now as he stared at Harry. “Explain,” he commanded.

“We’ve had to live in here for the last two days so we essentially created a new house with common room and dorms. The colors were a neutral black and white, reflecting none of our usual house colors—especially no red or green,” Harry said while he put his shoes and socks on. “We split the room down the middle—front half was our new common room, hence the couch Draco and I are still sitting on. The back half we split into dorm rooms.”

“Dorm rooms?” Snape questioned.

“Yeah, the girls were willing to share, but Draco and Ron . . . well, they weren’t willing, so we partitioned off three dorms with walls and doors. One for the girls, one for the Gryffindor boys and one for the Slytherin boys.”

Harry wasn’t about to volunteer the information that he’d actually slept literally, and figuratively, with Draco in the ‘Slytherin dorm’ the night before. In fact, Harry wasn’t sure where everyone else had slept the night before. He’d never thought to check that morning and it was entirely possible there had been some more bed swapping.

“The room really didn’t look the same at all. We even had a dining table over there,” Harry said, pointing to where it had been. “Oh, and you can see that I opened up the door to the bathroom from this side so that everyone wouldn’t be traipsing through your office,” he added.

Draco and Harry had finished putting their shoes on and stood. While Harry finished explaining everything they’d changed in the classroom, Draco quietly changed the couch back into a workbench and levitated it into its proper place.

“So there’s that,” Harry said, indicating the workbench. “Everything is back to normal now.”

“And my office?” Snape questioned suspiciously.

“Well, I owe you several bottles,” Harry admitted. “Thank you, by the way, for giving me permission for that,” he said, hoping to head the man off.

No such luck.

“And which bottles exactly do you owe me?” Snape asked, his tone very dangerous in Harry’s opinion.

Harry winced. “Well, um, yes, I took a couple of bottles of your good scotch along with some Firewhiskey and the peach brandy.

“Tell me that you at least appreciated the scotch properly,” Snape sneered.

The others were looking on curiously. They’d expected Snape to possibly be angry with them for getting into his liquor cabinet and the fact that they’d been drinking in the classroom—despite Harry’s reassurances. For Snape not to be angry about that but because Harry hadn’t appreciated his good scotch properly was a little beyond their comprehension at the moment.

Harry had obviously known that this would be an issue though, because now he was cringing and clearly didn’t want to answer. “I may have used it for shots,” he said very quickly.

After a moment processing exactly what Harry had said, Snape’s expression turned livid. “Potter, I thought I taught you better than that? Do you ever learn?” he snapped.

“I know, I know,” Harry pleaded. “But it was for a good cause. I swear I’ll double what I owe you!”

Snape’s nostrils flared as he glared at Harry. “Potter, we will discuss this further later.”

Harry sighed and nodded. He figured he’d be having to explain a lot more than just the scotch by the time all was said and done.

“Are there any other concerns with my office?” Snape asked, eyes narrowed dangerously.

Harry was not going to inform the man of what he’d been doing in there that morning, but the images conjured up actually helped Harry to relax again. Hopefully Snape would contribute any leftover tension on Harry’s part to the scotch issue.

“Only that I borrowed a couple potions but brewed up replacements. There are even a few extra hangover potions in your stock now,” he said with a grin.

Once again there were other little details Harry left out. Like the fact that he’d brewed up some lubrication potions that he used while having sex with Draco in the office. Not necessary information Snape needed to know, as far as Harry was concerned.

Harry was supremely thankful that the others had obviously packed up Harry’s and Draco’s bags as well as their own. And that was on top of them doing all the work putting the room back together while Harry and Draco slept.

Snape glared at Harry and then around to all the others suspiciously. Highly unusual, but Harry was the only one who appeared to be fairly relaxed. Snape had given Harry permission to tell this group that he was on better terms with the potions professor than everyone realized, so Harry wasn’t stressing so bad for once.

The Slytherins on the other hand were eyeing their Head of House warily. Ron, Hermione and Seamus always eyed Snape warily.

“Mr. Malfoy, has everything Potter has said been correct?” Snape asked.

“Yes, sir,” Draco said, but he didn’t elaborate.

“Have there been any problems over the last two days while you were locked in here with the Gryffindors?” Snape sneered. Harry didn’t think the man was physically capable of saying the word Gryffindor without the sneer.

“No, sir,” Draco answered, once again not elaborating in any way.

“Do any of you have anything to say?” Snape asked, glaring at the others.

There was a chorus of “no, sir” from the others as they shook their heads.

Snape turned his glare back at Harry and Draco. “Mr. Malfoy, would you care to explain why you were sleeping with Potter?”

Harry looked at Draco with curious interest, wondering how Draco would explain to his Head of House.

“We were all up extremely late, sir, and we happened to fall back asleep before you came,” Draco said in a crisp voice he tended to use when talking to professors.

Harry noted that Draco was very careful not to say exactly when they’d fallen asleep. The others were covering for them and it wouldn’t do to admit that Harry and Draco hadn’t helped at all with putting the room back together.

“Let’s try this again,” Snape sneered. “Why were you and Potter sleeping together?”

Draco smirked. Catching his breath in anticipation, Harry quickly turned to watch Snape’s reaction.

“Because we’re a couple now, sir,” Draco drawled. A bombshell like that needed his drawl, talking to a professor or not. Draco stepped closer to Harry again and took his hand into his own.

Snape should have been able to figure it out simply from finding them sleeping together, but he’d obviously chosen not to believe it. Snape’s eyebrows shot to his hairline as his jaw dropped.

Harry started counting as he cocked his head, studying the expression on Snape’s face. It was not exactly a pretty sight, but it was an extremely interesting change from the normal sneers and glares, he decided.

It took a full count of ten before the death glare was trained on them once again. Harry and Draco both gazed back at him calmly.

Snape pinched the bridge of his nose. Harry was positive the man had a headache coming on. “Mr. Potter, explain what you did to my Slytherins,” Snape demanded, but his tone sounded almost weary.

Harry snorted in amusement, pointedly ignoring Snape’s murderous glare. “I did nothing to the others, but I decided to get Draco drunk and take advantage of him, sir,” Harry said. It resembled the truth, at least to some extent.

The others were desperately trying to smother their snickering. Harry didn’t dare look, but he could feel Draco physically shaking beside him as he attempted to contain his amusement.

“Potter,” Snape warned. “I know you.”

Harry grinned. “I know you do, sir. So you know that I haven’t actually had a problem with the Slytherins for a long time. You also know that I’ve been working to convince Ron in particular that not all Slytherins are evil.” Harry paused. “I just neglected to ever tell you that I fancied Draco.”

Snape pinched the bridge of his nose again. “And how did you convince everyone to get along?” he asked, his tone definitely weary now.

Harry shrugged, that careless, casual shrug. “A whole lot of talking, the alcohol helped some, along with a game of I Never the first night and Truth or Dare last night.” Harry paused, obviously thinking. “Uh, there was also my fist connecting with Ron’s jaw at one point, some yelling, and bonding over a couple of glasses thrown into the wall,” he said. “Oh! I snogged a few people and that seemed to help break down a few barriers amongst the group,” he added.

Snape had that really interesting ‘eyebrows to the hairline, dropped jaw’ look going again, but Harry couldn’t count this time because Draco was trying to squeeze the life out of his hand.

“Ouch! Draco, let go,” Harry exclaimed.

Instead of letting go, Draco used the grip to yank Harry closer to him. “What the fuck are you doing?” he hissed.

“I’m answering his bloody questions. Aside from my snogging every boy in the room, nothing I told him was something that he probably couldn’t have guessed for himself anyway,” Harry retorted loudly enough for all of them to hear. Not that they hadn’t heard Draco, considering the stunned silence that was pervading the room.

Harry suddenly leaned forward and kissed Draco, shoving his tongue into his mouth briefly before pulling back. The surprise had caused Draco to let go of his hand and he didn’t look nearly as angry.

Harry was rubbing his hand with a disgruntled expression on his face when he turned to face Snape again. The poor man was back to pinching the bridge of his nose—hard.

“Potter, I really didn’t need to hear that particular little detail and I did not need to see that,” Snape sneered at Harry.

Harry shrugged but didn’t comment.

Snape sighed heavily. “I did give you permission to celebrate and I suppose I should simply be thankful that you did as I asked and kept yourselves from killing each other. Considering the circumstances, nothing more is to be said about this. You are all free to go.”

The group quickly gathered their bags to hightail it out of the room before Snape changed his mind about punishing them. Only Harry paused for a moment.

“Thank you, sir,” Harry said, and he meant it.

Snape smirked at him and nodded.

The others were waiting for Harry at the doorway. Each new couple now holding hands—Blaise and Hermione, Pansy and Seamus, and Ron and Millicent. Draco held out his hand for Harry to take as he approached. Harry made sure to hold hands with the one Draco hadn’t already bruised.

“Ready to face the real world again?” Harry asked them quietly.

They all grinned at him and nodded.

“Ready,” Draco drawled. “Let’s go roam the hallways and shock everyone.”

Laughter trailed behind them as the four new couples made their way back into the school.