Chapter 23

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Harry stepped out of the fireplace at Malfoy Manor and felt relieved to discover that the living room was vacant. He had no desire to see or talk to anyone but his stomach grumbled noisily to mock him. He would have to go to the dining hall and he would have to socialize if he didn't want to starve. Harry made his way to the dining hall and upon reaching it, realized that everyone was already gathered there. Voldemort sat at the head of the table and signalled Harry to sit in the vacant chair closest to him.

He took the proffered seat and looked around the table. Bellatrix was seated opposite him. She was sneering at him and Harry instantly felt incensed. He schooled his expressions so that none of his rage would slip out. Bellatrix wanted him to react and he wouldn't give her that pleasure. Food appeared on the table in front of them and Harry felt relieved. He picked up the knife and fork and was just about to start when Bella spoke,

"My Lord, I think that Potter should take some days off from work. It is obvious that he is not medically fit to continue and some rest would do him good."

Murmurs of agreement rose from the table. Voldemort cocked his head and looked at Harry,

"Are they correct in their assumptions, Harry?"

Harry was about to reply when Bella spoke again,

"My lord, you saw his condition with your very eyes today. I have nothing but his best interests at heart."

Voldemort raised his hand to silence her and kept his gaze fixated on Harry,

"Do you require rest, Harry?"

Harry's knuckles had gone white because of his tight grip on the knife and fork. In the blink of an eye, he had chucked his knife at Bella. Voldemort waved his wand lazily and the knife stopped. Harry's eyes widened as he saw it hovering in mid-air an inch away from one of her eyes. Harry verbally cursed and rose from his seat. He could have taken one of her eyes today. It would have served her well. Bella had gotten over the initial shock as well and rose to her feet. She drew out her wand and screeched,


Harry looked at her, his chin jutted out defiantly and a mischievous smirk played across his face. He wanted her to curse him. Voldemort growled out,


Bella instantly fell on her knees, begging for forgiveness and kissing Voldemort's feet. Harry, however turned around haughtily and was about to make his way out of the dining hall and when Voldemort spoke in a lethal voice,

"Sit down and finish your dinner or else…"

Harry turned around and looked at Voldemort roguishly,

"Or else?"

Harry saw that same look in Voldemort's eyes that he had seen this morning in his office,

"There is no need to be impatient, Harry. I stand true to my promise."

Harry felt the heat rush to his cheeks and he tried his very best to conceal it. He didn't like the way his heart was beating or the butterflies that were fluttering in his stomach. He hesitantly retook his seat and realized that his knife was still hovering where Voldemort had stopped it. Voldemort noticed it as well and pulled it towards himself with his wand. He took it in his hand and eyed it with amusement before handing it back to Harry.

The rest of the dinner passed in oppressive silence. Harry was just about to get up when Voldemort spoke,

"Do you require a leave of absence from work in order to regain your health?"

Harry sighed out in frustration. He should have known that Voldemort wouldn't drop the matter,

"I'm fine. There is nothing wrong with physically or mentally."

Harry was expecting an argument but it didn't come. Voldemort merely nodded his head and spoke,

"I expect you to be on time tomorrow."

Harry nodded quietly,


Voldemort smirked and Harry saw something akin to mischief sparkle in his eyes,

"I shall also discuss your attire with you in a few minutes."

Harry couldn't help but gape at him. He shook his head, corrected his expression and rose to his feet,

"I don't think there's anything wrong with my attire."

Voldemort shook his head and spoke,

"We shall see about that."

Harry grinned cheekily and walked out of the dining hall. He could practically feel the way Rodolphus And Rabastan had been undressing him with their eyes. Harry couldn't help but chuckle as he made his way to his room.

Once inside, Harry closed the door and locked it. He pulled off his jacket and tossed it on the couch. Harry looked down at his clothes. Even though the blood stains were barely visible on the dark clothing, they were still there and he didn't want Voldemort to see them. He unbuttoned his shirt and shrugged it off. He desperately needed a shower. Harry made his way to the bathroom and looked at his reflection in the mirror. He hated himself. What would Sirius think of him now? Sirius would hate him too.

The click of the lock informed him of Voldemort's arrival. Harry leaned over, bracing himself on the sink as his fingers curled against the porcelain. There was no way he'd be having a shower anytime soon. He heard Voldemort approach and cursed mentally. Harry felt like he was going crazy. Why did it have to be Lord Voldemort? Why now?

Voldemort stood in the doorway and watched Harry for a moment. He licked his lips thoughtfully and frowned. He had noticed a lot of small things adding up about Harry's behaviour. There was definitely something extremely wrong with him. Why hadn't it shown up when he had ran a diagnostic charm on him? He couldn't forget how pale Harry had looked today at the ministry and how weak he had sounded.

A shift of weight warned Harry that Voldemort was close, he straightened, looked in the mirror. And without a word, he lowered his head again. He half-wished he could say something, joke about it. The heat next to him was too intoxicating, he wished he had the nerve to do something about it. Leaning on the counter again, Harry muttered to himself.

"This is going to be the death of me."

Voldemort chuckled softly,

"I shall not allow you to die."

The resolve in Voldemort's voice surprised Harry enough that he looked up at Voldemort's reflection in the mirror. It had taken nothing for Voldemort to get so far under his skin that Harry was losing his grip. It was time to do something about this attraction that had been building. Then, maybe he'd be able to focus again

Harry slowly turned around to face Voldemort. He ignored the warning bells going off in his head, and leaned back against the counter. Voldemort stepped closer to Harry and Harry watched the way he licked his lips. The colour drained from Harry's face as Voldemort pulled him close, and his stomach turned again in a pleasant somersault of nervous butterflies. It only took a moment for him to flush with heat, and he looked into Voldemort's eyes guardedly as his entire body tensed.

Harry knew that this wasn't right. It was so wrong on so many levels but that didn't stop his body from wanting this.

The caution that crept into Harry's gaze was a pretty clear warning. Voldemort loosened his fingers and almost let go, but Harry didn't pull away. It was now or never. Voldemort took a slow, deep breath, ducked his chin, tilted his head sideways, and slid his lips firmly against Harry's. Harry caught his breath, nearly gasping when Voldemort finally touched their lips together. He shivered and his lips parted tentatively, but his wary eyes never closed. Giving in, Voldemort pulled him closer and lifted one hand to cup Harry's cheek as he increased the pressure of his lips against Harry's.

Harry groaned softly and finally relaxed against the kiss, returning it tentatively. He knew he'd regret this just as soon as they parted, but he couldn't bring himself to stop it. Tension cramped Harry's gut as Voldemort's lips moved, and he deepened the kiss, all the itch and urge heating inside him as he traced Voldemort's lips with his tongue. Oh, this was going to be an absolute mess, he just knew it. He pulled his hand away from the counter and wrapped that arm around Voldemort's waist as he leaned into the dangerous kiss. He felt Voldemort's hand on his cheek tremble. Harry indulged himself in the deeper kiss for a long, horribly tantalizing moment before he pulled his head back just enough to break the contact and pushed gently at Voldemort's chest. He rasped as his breath gusted against Voldemort's lips.

"This isn't right."

Voldemort slowly opened his eyes as their lips hovered a mere breath apart, and he dropped his hand so that both of them settled on Harry's waist,

"Do you want it to stop?"

Harry just barely shook his head,


Voldemort claimed his lips again, breathing in heavily through his nose as if he were about to dive under water as he pulled himself closer to Harry and growled a little.

Tightening his arms, Harry closed them further around Voldemort as he met the kiss with more strength, dizzy with the surprise and desire blasting through him. This was beyond crazy. Beyond negligent. All the hate and anger of the past was morphing into heat and passion and he had no idea what to think about it.

Suddenly, Harry yanked away from the increasingly heated kiss again, stepping back and giving Voldemort's chest a good hard smack with the back of his hand. He gasped as he tried to get himself under control.

"You're evil."

Voldemort gasped out a laugh as he leaned back,

"Me? Evil? I thought you were aware of that, Harry."

Voldemort grabbed him and pulled him away from the counter to kiss him again, Harry returned the kiss with increased vigour and forced himself not to think about the consequences. Clutching at Harry's shoulders, Voldemort shifted his weight to push Harry towards the door.

Harry hit the door with a rush of air from his lungs, the impact slammed the door closed, but neither of them noticed. They were far too distracted by the sudden turn of events. Harry gasped accusingly between the hurried meetings of their lips.

"I thought you wanted to discuss my attire."

Voldemort bit Harry's bottom lip slightly and sucked it between his lips before letting it loose. He spoke as he ran a hand down Harry's side,

"We shall get to that."

Harry hissed with the bite. He was extremely turned down and it was all Voldemort's fault.

Pulling in a deep breath when his body reacted to the harsh sound, Voldemort set his forearm against the door over Harry's shoulder, making their chests, hips, and groins rock together and breathed,

"What do you want, Harry?"

Harry banged his head back on the door and closed his eyes, huffing through his nose as he tried to regain some control,

"I don't know."

Voldemort couldn't help but smile and snicker. He caressed Harry's cheek gently and whispered,

"You know exactly what you want. You just need to admit it."

Harry relished Voldemort's touch, smiled softly and spoke,


Voldemort leaned closer and stroked Harry's lips,

"I shall take that as a compliment."

Still grinning, Voldemort stole another firm kiss. Harry's lips parted almost against his will, and he groaned slightly. Voldemort couldn't resist that little sound, and he moved to capture it, sliding his mouth more slowly over Harry's, tongue sliding between swollen lips.

Harry seemed to melt against him, losing the tension that was always in him, losing the caustic shield he seemed to rarely drop. He merely managed a few incoherent murmurs as he slid a hand into Voldemort's hair.

Voldemort wrapped his arms around Harry when he felt him relax, not tight, just enough to hold their bodies in constant contact. Harry groaned finally, pulling back as much as he dared. Their lips still touched when he rasped, breathing still difficult as his body screamed for more contact.

"Can we have that discussion now?"

It wasn't the right excuse, Harry knew, but it would have to serve. This could only lead to disaster. He slowly straightened, seeing the desire in Voldemort's hooded eyes.

Somehow Voldemort made himself step back, hands sliding on each side of Harry's rib cage until they fell away.

Harry lowered his head, still looking at Voldemort from under lowered brows, and pressed his lips tightly together. He wanted this so badly. He needed this desperately but stopping this was necessary. Nothing good would come out of this.

Voldemort took another step back and moved his hands through his hair to keep them off Harry. He leaned against the counter. He could echo Harry's sentiment and stop this but the urge to touch and taste was still ravaging him, and it was taking all he had not to grab Harry and grind against him. He closed his eyes in a bid to regain some measure of control. He finally growled out in frustration,

"What do we do now?"

After squeezing his eyes shut for a long moment, Harry leaned back against the door and spoke,

"You're going to leave my room and I'm taking a cold shower."

He turned to yank a towel off the rack. Voldemort smirked maliciously and spoke,

"What about our discussion?"

Harry opened the bathroom door and signalled Voldemort to get out,

"Let's have that some other time."

Voldemort raised his hands in surrender and stepped out of the bathroom,

"How about we have it after your shower? Surely that counts as some other time."

Harry slammed the bathroom door shut between them and slumped back against the door. Had he done the right thing?

Voldemort stood outside the bathroom for a long moment, breathing heavily and resting his forehead against the cool surface of the door to calm himself. His body was overrun with the desire to shove the door open and grab Harry again but he controlled it. He had to control it. He wanted this to happen with Harry's consent and even though he knew that Harry was burning up with the desire as well, he couldn't take him yet. Not until he was willing to be taken.

Voldemort's hands curled into fists. Who was he kidding? Harry would never admit it. He would never come to him and ask him to take him. He would have to do it himself. Harry was as willing now as he would ever be. He might as well take the chance now.

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