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The Darkness Within
Draco M. & Harry P. & Hermione G. & Ron W. - Words: 43,039 - Rated: M - English - Adventure - Chapters: 12 - Reviews: 48 - Updated: 25-10-2018 - Published: 04-09-2018 - Complete - by SBPagel (FFN)

A/N – I just wanted to say a quick thank you to everyone who has stuck with this fic so far and took the time to review, you are all amazing! This fic has 4 more chapters including this one and will get very dark.

I am currently on the look out for a Beta for my next one so if you know of anyone or are one yourself can you please send me a PM? Thank you xx SBP

Chapter 9

The next morning Draco sent Snape a Patronus requesting the necessary ingredients to brew a Dreamless Sleep potion. They were left disappointed and slightly terrified however when Snape's response came, the silver doe said, 'you are both idiots what in the name of Merlin do you think you're doing?' Their potions professor turned up twenty minutes later. He was seething as he entered the tent, Harry and Draco suddenly felt like they were back in the classroom messing up a simple assignment. He berated them for using a potion designed for singular use as a regular sleeping aide. Never mind the risk of addiction, the damage it could cause to internal organs was irreversible. He gave them a store of mild calming draughts instead and insisted if they ever needed advice on potion dosage to see a potions master, not a student.

After three nights of waking up with nightmares and ending up in each other's beds by morning, Draco used a connection charm and just fused the beds together. Snape walked in the morning after Draco did this, Draco merely raised an eyebrow daring Snape to mention it.

New Year's Eve was snowing heavily, Draco cast one of Hermione's signature fires in a jar and left it in the centre of the tent. The pair were sitting around it and Harry was contemplating opening the last bottle of Firewhiskey when Remus walked in.

"Evening." Nervous didn't quite cover the look in Lupin's eye.

"What are you doing here?" Harry smiled from the couch. Remus had only been gone a few hours, as he had spent Christmas with Harry and Draco he had promised to spend tonight with Ron and Hermione.

"You need to read something." Remus pulled out a copy of the Daily Prophet. "It was printed today. Just remember that we will do everything that we can to fix this."

Harry's smile fell. He stood and took the paper, placing it on the dining room table, he and Draco began to read.

The Order's Latest Betrayal
The Wizengamot is again receiving praise from Ministry officials and members of the public today after uncovering yet another of the now dismantled and shamed Order of the Phoenix's plots. As readers are now aware, since the death of the Order's leader, Albus Dumbledore, more and more accusations have come to light. Currently there are four cases before the courts and more being investigated. It is clear now that the group was not striving for peace and acceptance like we were once forced to believe, but they were slowly trying to undermine the Ministry for Magic while taking away our liberties and our choice of lifestyles.
The most recent revelation comes from, until recently, assumed deceased Peter Pettigrew. Last year Albus Dumbledore gave testimony stating that convicted mass murderer Sirius Black was in fact innocent of the charges that sent him to Azkaban for twelve years. That testimony successfully expunged Black's record.
Some would argue that Pettigrew's testimony today proves Dumbledore's accounts of events to be accurate. However, as we learned last night, there is always more to the story.
Pettigrew has testified that he was terrified of his once friend Sirius Black. So scared that he was forced to fake his own death in order to survive. He only felt safe to come out of hiding once Black was confirmed dead a year and a half ago. When asked what he had to say in response to Dumbledore and, now reported as missing, Harry Potter's joint testimony that he had in fact resurfaced four years ago, Pettigrew grew sombre. He spoke of the love he had for Potter's parents and of his fears that Dumbledore has corrupted our saviour for good.
According to Criminal Decree Number 713 any conviction can only go through the appeals process twice. This means, Peter Pettigrew can now sleep peacefully for the first time in almost eighteen years, secure in the knowledge that he will never be marked as a guilty man again. Sirius Black will now and forever be remembered for the crimes that he was imprisoned for.

"No." Harry growled, his arms were shaking and had to lean on the table to support himself.

"Harry, this is undoubtably an attempt to draw you out." Remus urged. "We will fight this when it's all over, I promise you we will."

When a glass flew off of the shelf behind them, Draco quickly extinguished the open flame and pulled Lupin towards the door. "You need to leave Remus."

"I'm not going anywhere Draco." Remus shook his head. "If I leave and he goes after them, it's my fault. I can't have his death on my hands as well."

"He needs to calm down, if he hurts you, he'll never forgive himself." Draco hissed. "He needs to let it out, you know that. I'll put a body bind on him before I let him walk out that door. Please Remus I'll get word to you tomorrow, just go."

Remus closed his eyes and nodded. "I'm trusting you." Draco heard the veiled threat in his words.

When Draco heard the crack of Lupin's disapparition Draco turned back to Harry, the scene was surreal. Harry was standing, hands braced on the table in front of him, looking at him you would be forgiven for thinking he was just deep in thought. That is until you noticed the debris behind him. Books, glasses, shoes, anything loose inside the tent was floating in a circle serenely. A slow tornado of objects powered by Harry's uncontrolled magic.

"Potter," Draco moved carefully forward. "Harry you need to calm down."

Harry turned his head to face Draco but seemed to stare into a world beyond them both. He drew in a shaking breath and when he let it go a sound escaped that was not Potter's voice. A scream that Draco could only describe as guttural and primal filled the tent, it was the sound of Harry's heart breaking. When the scream finally ended, Draco instinctively cast a Protego and it was not a second too soon. The once slowly orbiting objects turned into dangerous projectiles with enough force behind them to rival even the most determined bludger.

Harry drew his wand and began blasting apart every piece of furniture within sight, he summoned the once floating objects and cast jinx's on them Draco had never seen before. The sofa was left split in two, the bed was turned into a pile of fluff, springs and drifting feathers and the kitchen became little more that broken wood and rubble. Harry was gasping for breath as he turned to slowly survey the damage, searching for anything else that he could release his anger onto. His eyes rested on Draco who, despite releasing his shield, looked terrified. Harry pounced.

Draco was held against the tent wall, Harry's hand tight around his throat and wand held to his temple. Draco held his breath waiting for Harry to do anything, after what felt an age Harry threw his wand and punched him in the eye. Draco was fairly certain that his head had split in two. Harry pushed him harder against the wall and bared his teeth.

"Are you going to kill me?" Draco chocked out, the hand on his throat was painfully tight. "It won't change anything if you do. I'm not Pettigrew."

Draco watched as Harry's nostrils flared and felt the fingers around his throat tighten still more, he was starting to think that maybe killing him was exactly what Harry had planned. There were worst ways to go, Draco reasoned with himself. Instead, Harry closed whatever little distance that was left between them. It was not the first kiss you read in romantic stories about heroes and their maidens or what you tell you kids about when talking of first loves, it was a brutal show of force. It was a mess of tongues and teeth, battling for control. Harry was painfully pulling Draco's hair and Draco was gripping Harry's hips hard enough to bruise, despite the heavy layers of cloth.

Harry yanked Draco's hair to the side and moved his attack to the pale ear, neck, collar bone, wherever his mouth could find purchase. Draco groaned and pulled Harry's hips flush against his own making their erections rub together. The shock seemed to tear Harry out of whatever spell he was under. He pushed himself away and walked backwards into the overturned sofa.

"Draco, oh my god, I'm so sor-"

"Potter don't you dare go getting all high and mighty and noble on me now." Draco panted, glaring across the room. "If you don't get over here and finish what you bloody well started, I swear to Merlin Voldemort will have to get in line."

Harry looked up with a smirk that could rival Draco's own and moved forward again, resuming the assault without the ferocity about even more intense. Harry's shirt was torn into three pieces and the buttons of Draco's lay scattered across the room. Both were panting hard and when their naked erections were finally pushed together, Draco was certain he was about to implode.

"Oh fuck, Harry!" Draco screamed as Harry moved his hand to grasp both cocks between them. It was a symphony of moans and grunts, a flurry of mouths and hands. It was messy and awkward, and they would both be sporting bruises the next morning, neither cared one bit. Together they were working through years of torment, pain and loss. Draco came without warning in streams of white, Harry was not far behind.

They stood grasping each other as their bodies come down from their highs. When he had the strength of body and mind Draco waved his wand at the bed, restoring it to what it was, everything else could wait until morning. There were no 'what are we?' conversations or whispers of sweet nothings. That's not what this was about and they both knew it. This was about two people who knew the pain of too much loss and the need to release the pent-up anger and guilt that they were both victims to. They fell asleep and the dreams that plagued them nightly did not return to torment them, the both merely closed their eyes and had a very natural dreamless sleep.

Harry woke in the early hours feeling tired but rested, he figured that his body was so accustomed to waking at this time that it was forcing him out of bed now. He carefully slid out of the covers, trying not to wake Draco who had draped an arm across his chest during the night. He walked through the tent, feeling ashamed of his outburst as he looked at the destruction he had caused. He stood at the entrance of their tent and watched the snow fall. He wasn't actually seeing anything, too lost in his own thoughts.

"You're brooding." Draco's voice said from somewhere behind him.

"That I am." Harry said, turning around he watched Draco stalk up towards him covered only by a pair of underwear. The evidence of the night before was glaringly obvious. "Are you ok?"

"Worried about me?" Draco cocked an eyebrow. "Scared I'm going to fall hopelessly in love after one almost shag? You're the Gryffindor not me."

"You're such a prat." Harry rolled his eyes and turned back to the snow. "Your chest is a mess and you have a black eye. Do you need me to heal it?"

"Nah leave it, it makes me look all dark, mysterious and dangerous." Draco leaned against the other side of the tent entrance. "Sickle for your thoughts?"

"I'm going to kill Pettigrew." The clarity and determination in Harry's voice left no room for a debate on the ethics. "Not out of self defence or because some seer made a twisted prophecy about it but because I want to. I want to watch it happen, I want to feel his last breath, I want him to know that it was me that finally got him. I want to enjoy the fact that I was the reason that the world is finally rid of him.

"It's all his fault," Harry took a calming breath. "It's his fault that my parents are dead, his fault that Cedric died. He's the reason Voldemort came back and every death since that night comes back to him. All of that blood is on Pettigrew's hands."

Draco nodded beside him, if anyone understood Harry's resolve it was him. "You get Pettigrew and Voldemort but do not even think about even touching Lucius, he's mine."

They stood in silence staring out into the snow, lost in thoughts of vengeance and absolution. There would be no training that day, both men were too focussed on what was happening in their own heads. As the sun rose they fixed the path of Harry's destruction and sent a reassuring Patronus to Remus. They then spent the day in bed, desperate to distract themselves from painful memories and vengeful thoughts.

As night fell Draco was about to take Harry in his mouth, returning a favour, when a bright light filled the tent. A silver doe reared in front of them and Snape's voice filled the room. "I'll be there in ten, do ensure that Potter has his emotions in check."

"Fuck." They said together and scrambled to dress and clean up any evidence of how they had spent their day. It was only after Snape had entered and stood blinking at Draco when Harry realised that they had neglected to cover up the purple hickey below Draco's left ear. Mortified was too soft a word to describe Harry's emotions when Snape raised an eyebrow at him. He wasn't ashamed of what they had done but there were certain things that you didn't want your school teachers to know.

"I see Weasley and Granger had nothing to worry about after all." Snape said slowly. "They were under the impression that you would have stopped at nothing to go off and murder Pettigrew in a fit of idiotic heroics."

"Yes well, I got distracted." Harry put his chin up, refusing to blush. Draco didn't seem to have the same resolve.

"So it appears." Snape muttered under his breath. "Do ensure that your, distraction as you call it, does not interfere with what we are doing here. I will be back at five tomorrow morning. If either of you are not ready, you'll be training in your undergarments, without a warming charm."

"He's a twat." Harry grumbled when Snape had left. "You don't think he's serious do you? It's snowing."

"I do yes." Draco was standing at the mirror studying his bruised neck. "Merlin, you're a bloody cannibal. Do you have no self-control?"

"Firstly," Harry smiled. "You definitely weren't complaining at the time, quite the opposite actually. And secondly you can't exactly talk. I think I'm going to have a permeant scar on my shoulder blade thanks to your nails."

"At least you can wear a shirt to cover that." Draco said with a frown. "I'm going to have to use a glamour on this for a week."

True to his word, Snape turned up at precisely five am and look thoroughly put out to find both Harry and Draco ready and waiting for him. He made up for it by pressing them harder and further than he ever had before. Together they pushed each other to be as strong together as they were apart. When they teamed up they began to unconsciously synchronise until in March they were able to not only disarm but also incapacitate Remus and Snape by the time April ended both of them could win two against one. Their bodies grew even harder and their resolve even more so, it had begun to be almost too easy for them to win and when sparring against each other, they were too evenly matched for either of them to outperform the other.

On the last night of May, Harry was sitting in an arm chair unlacing my boots as Draco walked out of the shower dressed only in a towel.

"Potter my ass hurts." Draco scowled at him.

Harry smiled. "You're the one who said, 'I'm not a girl Harry just put it in', you really can't blame me for obeying your orders."

Draco glared at him. "Since when do you pay attention to the rules?"

Harry was about to respond when Snape walked through the entrance, he had taken to turning up unannounced. Harry had a suspicion that he was trying to keep Harry and Draco from doing anything, untoward, but Harry was secretly hoping to scare his professor with the visual. Snape looked down at Harry and said, "You're ready."

"I know." Harry was hoping this day was coming soon, he was growing impatient. "When do we leave?"

"Granger and Weasley will apparate here tomorrow afternoon." Snape said sitting in the chair across, Draco sat down on the arm of Harry's. "You will then take a port key that is scheduled to leave at six to a secure Order of the Phoenix safe house. Kingsley will update you on the current state of affairs from there." Snape handed Harry a note that had an address written in Kingsley's neat hand. "I suggest you both get a fair amount of sleep, it may be your last chance."

Harry nodded and stood up as Snape moved to leave. "Snape," Harry called, he walked towards his old professor and held out a steady hand. "Thank you." Snape stared at Harry for a long moment before nodding and shaking the had once. Harry figured that was as good and as rare as a hug from the man.

"So," Draco said rising from where he sat once Snape left. "Our last night alone."

"Yeah, I guess it is," Harry looked into Draco's grey eyes and was suddenly overwhelmed by too many thoughts and emotions. He had been waiting for this day yes, but suddenly he felt very much not ready. One way or another his fight with Voldemort, the one he had been fighting since the day he was born, was almost over. He was going to see his best friends, his family again. He was re-entering the world of witches, wizards and awe-inspiring magic, he was going home. His relationship, or what ever you wanted to call it, with Draco was ending. It all felt like too much at once.

He would no longer have the warmth that kept the nightmares at bay. He would no longer have the one person who understood his pain. He would no longer have an outlet to release his anger and guilt. Would he need it though once it was all over? Would he still want it? What they had wasn't love, of that he was sure, it was mutual need, mutual respect, mutual desire. No, love was soft words and gentle embraces. Love was wanting to raise a family and growing old together. Draco kept Harry alive and Harry did the same, but it was only for long enough. Once their mission was over they were both free to live or die as they saw fit.

"I honestly don't know what to do." Harry said feeling dread and despair. Part of him wanted to run, part of him wanted to crawl into a ball and cry, part of him wanted to run off and finish it all tonight and part of him wanted to rip off Draco's towel and go to town.

"Come here." Draco said holding out his arm. When Harry walked into the embrace Draco cupped his jaw and kissed him deeply and with gentle care. Unlike their other acts of intimacy, this wasn't intense passion, this wasn't a need for release, this was comfort and warmth. "You're going to go have a shower and come to bed. You're going to cry while I do what I will deny doing for the rest of our lives, I'll hold you while you do that. You're going to go to sleep and tomorrow you will wake up as Harry Potter the hero, saviour of the wizarding world, the chosen one. Tonight, you can be weak and scared. Tomorrow is when we need you to be the, as Snape puts it, 'the idiotic hero.'"

And that's what Harry did. He allowed himself to panic, to be scared, to cry. He let himself mourn his lot in life, he was only seventeen after all. True to his word, Draco held him close and let Harry lament until exhaustion finally took over. The next morning Draco gently took Harry for the first time, usually Harry had the power, but he gladly gave it up, it was nice to be cared for.

They packed up their tent and took down the wards in time to see a tall red head and a bushy brunette appear in front of them. Harry couldn't help but smile as he was pulled into a four-way group hug.

If he couldn't succeed with these three, he couldn't succeed at all.

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