Beta: brknhalo241 and mystressxoxo
Rating: PG, to be safe
Warnings: angst, fluff, kinda pre-slash
Word Count: 933
Disclaimer: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by J.K. Rowling, various publishers, including but not limited to Bloomsbury Publishing Plc. and Scholastic Inc., and Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended. This story is a work of fiction. Names, places and incidents either are products of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously.
Summary: An Auror investigation, a unknown spell and unexpected results.
A/N: 1) Written for spectrespecs, to thank her for the icons she made for me, and also to wish her a Happy Belated Birthday; she asked for an Auror!fic and a bit of angst. I am sorry it took so long, and I hope you enjoy this little silly story! 2) Written for the prompts Your choice: Ear, from the 10iloveyou Body table, and Fear, from the 10_hurt_comfort Classic Revised table. 3) Thanks to my lovely betas, brknhalo241 and mystressxoxo!
Draco sighed tiredly, soaking the improvised cloth in the cool water for the—would it be the hundredth?—time that night.
"Stupid Potter!" he cursed as he squished the cloth and brought it to Harry's forehead. Draco hissed as his fingers touched the other man's hot skin. He grimaced and murmured, "Fucking fever!", biting his bottom lip hard.
He didn't withdraw his fingers, though. On the contrary, Draco let the not so accidental touch linger, tracing his partner's face softly.
It had been two days, two bloody days... and the fever didn't seem to subside in the least. It even seemed to be increasing. Draco felt his body tremble at the thought.
He and Potter had been assigned as partners in an important investigation of a group of neo-Death Eaters who were suspected to be hiding-out in the northernmost Northumberland. With that in mind, the two Aurors set up their camp in the middle of a dark forest almost bordering Scotland.
They were near the target, according to the Auror Department, very near, and all was well until they started fighting over a minor detail of the investigation procedure.
"Fine, Potter, do whatever you want and just leave me alone," Draco snarled after what felt hours of arguing, jumping up to punch his insufferable Gryffindor partner in the face, but Harry held him and managed to throw him to the ground instead. Draco groaned and winced.
"Fuck you, Malfoy!" Harry shouted, storming out of the spell-protected tent and heading into the forest outside.
"Potter?" Draco got clumsily to his feet and hurried to the tent's opening. "Where do you think... Potter, where are you going?" he shouted, but Harry was already out of the of the protective spells and didn't turn back. "Potter, come back here." Draco let out a growl and had to refrain from kicking one of the poles that sustained the tent. "Fuck."
Draco paced the ground inside the shelter until he got tired, and then sat down with his knees pulled to his chest, rocking back and forth. What could the scarhead be possibly thinking? Going outside the spells like that because of a small argument... And where was he now? The night was falling over the forest, and still nothing of...
The moon was long high up in the sky when Potter finally returned. He had to almost drag himself into the shelter, so dizzy he was.
"Potter?" Draco asked with a panicked shriek. "Potter, what happened?" He stood up quickly, offering support to the other Auror, who didn't refuse it. Potter was burning with fever, all his clothes were soaked in cold sweat. "What in Merlin's name..."
"I was cursed," Harry said, coughing. "I think they saw me and-" He let his head rest on Draco's shoulder. "I think someone threw a curse..." Harry trailed off, his head hanging heavily on Draco's shoulder.
"Potter?" Draco said shaking the man in his arms. "Potter," Draco whispered this time, holding his unconcious partner with care. When would he have imagined Harry Potter fainting in an Auror's mission, let alone in Draco Malfoy's arms?
Okay, it was not funny. Not funny at all.
Draco managed to conjure a mattress—blankets and sheets on the hard ground wouldn't do—and lay Harry down, arranging him in a safe and more comfortable position. With a fever like that, it was a wonder that Harry had made it to the shelter, but Draco was relieved that he did.
It was a sleepless night for the blond. He tried to use every spell he could remember to lift up the unknown curse while hearing Harry moan and mumble unintelligible words, all night long.
Draco turned to soak the cloth and place it on Harry's forehead again, angrily wiping away the the tears welling up in his own eyes.
"Please, Potter," he whispered hoarsely, leaning closer to Harry's ear, "don't do this to me." He arranged himself to lie down beside Harry. "I-I am sorry, H-Harry. I didn't mean that," he said shakily, his body close to the other man's. "Don't leave me alone, I-I... I love you, Harry," he whispered, burying his face in the mattress next to Harry's ear.
Draco didn't notice the sharp intake of breath that followed his confession, but he started at the feel of Harry's head turning to the side. He lifted quickly, looking into Harry's wide green eyes still glassy from the—now subsiding, thank god—fever. Draco bit his lip, breath speeding up.
"What did you say?" Harry questioned in a tired whisper. "Draco." He grabbed the blond's wrist to keep him from shifting away, "What did you say?"
Draco stared thoughtfully at Harry's hand on his wrist before looking up at his his eyes. He swallowed hard.
"I said I..." he stopped, pressing his lips together in a thin line. "I said I love you... Harry."
Thankfully, Harry released him.
Without looking at him, Draco gave his answer. "Longer than I can recall..."
They remained silent for several seconds before Harry decided to speak again.
"Draco?" The blond shivered at the use of his first name so softly. "Draco, would you... kiss me?"
He looked at Harry with eyes wide in surprise, searching Harry's face to see if he had heard it right. 'Would you kiss me?' How long had he longed to do that? The only thing he needed was Harry's nod of confirmation, and then he leaned closer and let his lips touch Harry's, first in a gentle caress and then harder and hungrily.
Not going any further than kissing and cuddling, they slept in each other's arms.