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Catalyst

Rated PG-13

Word Count ~900

Fandom/Pairing: Harry Potter; HP/DM

Summary:

Harry drinks. Also visible here at my LiveJournal.

Any reviews are welcome, and should be directed either to my ask box or posted on my LJ.

Excerpt:

Pansy Parkinson is a Slytherin.  Not one of those demi-Slytherins, the kind that shy away from the dirty jobs, turn their noses up out of some misplaced sense of pride.

No, she is a real Slytherin.  The kind that will stop at nothing to get what she wants.  And what she wants, right now, is to get her best friend out of Hogwarts and into the arms of some welcoming—preferably hunky—man.

Harry Potter—king of Gryffindor and Saviour of the Wizarding World—is drunk.  Again.  As usual.  He likes being drunk these days, the legend and expectations of the Man Who Lived Twice sitting heavy on his shoulders like an enormous sodding snake.  He hates snakes, has ever since Nagini had attacked him in Godric’s Hollow, almost four years ago now.

Being drunk is so easy, for Harry, now.  When Harry is drunk, he can laugh and sing and dance and fuck, and no one will care.  He won’t, at least.

In reality, he is drunk quite a lot.  Sometimes, he’s drunk before noon.  Sometimes, he’s still drunk from the night before when he gets up.  Sometimes, he loses entire days because he’s drunk.

But that’s only because when he’s drunk, he doesn’t have to listen to everyone telling him how wonderful he is.  Or how much they’d like to be him.

Or how much they’d like to blow him.

When Harry is drunk, nothing else matters.  When he is sober, people have so many expectations; there are so many limits on how he can act, speak, dress, live.  When he is drunk, people turn away from him, lose interest or hope or whatever the fuck they try and pin on him.  So, drunk, he is free.

When Harry is sober, the weight of his friends’ disappointment is palpable in his belly.  When he is sober, his mind strays, wonders how his parents would feel if they could see him now.  Or Dumbledore.  Or Snape.  He wonders if they’d feel like it had all gone to waste; all their efforts to keep him alive, down the hatch like his favourite Scotch.

When Harry is sober, he knows Kingsley and the other Order members hate what he is doing, joining up with Puddlemere United practically the moment he finished his NEWTs rather than applying for Aurorship.

But when Harry is drunk, none of that matters.

So Harry is drunk often.

Draco Malfoy, Ice Prince of Slytherin, ex-Death Eater extraordinaire, is constantly plagued with guilt.  It dogs every step he takes, itches under his skin and is marked by the heavy black ink on his forearm.  He feels guilty for the choices he made, the actions he took, his father and himself.

Unable to think of anything else to do with himself—God knows he doesn’t need money; even if they left him with nothing else, he has money—he teaches at Hogwarts School, taking over Charms from the now-wizened Professor Flitwick.

He doesn’t have a real reason to teach; he doesn’t particularly like teenagers—never has, really—and he could give two shits about people’s expectations.  All he knows is a powerful void of his own person, one that he thinks stems from a deep-seated insecurity over the love of his father.

He thinks that if he could just save one student from feeling the way he did, from making choices he made, then it could all be better.  Maybe that space would fill.  Maybe not.  Maybe he will stop needing it to be filled.

And maybe, he thinks, he will get some peace from his nightmares.

Pansy Parkinson is a Slytherin.  Not one of those demi-Slytherins, the kind that shy away from the dirty jobs, turn their noses up out of some misplaced sense of pride.

No, she is a real Slytherin.  The kind that will stop at nothing to get what she wants.  And what she wants, right now, is to get her best friend out of Hogwarts and into the arms of some welcoming—preferably hunky—man.

And she knows just the man she wants to set up with Draco.  For all anybody knows, though, that man is straight.  According to all the gossip mags.  There is never a whit of a mention of anything else.

She knows.  She’s read the mags.  All of them.

Of course, being an especially clever Slytherin with a well-padded wallet, she knows that a lack of information about any homosexual encounters does not mean that there are none.  She knows that it just means her adversary is also clever, also has plenty of money and knows how to use it.

These days, the only thing to be found in the papers is information related to his Quidditch successes.

The problem is, Pansy doesn’t exactly have a plan to get Draco into Potter’s bed.  She also doesn’t really have a plan to get Potter into Draco’s bed, and therein lies the issue:

They still think they hate each other.

Not that she talks to Potter, meaning she’s not entirely sure that this is the case, but from the look of the shambles of his life, he doesn’t hate anyone except himself at the moment.

Draco, of course, spends all of his free time poring over magazines, scoffing at Potter’s hair and Potter’s glasses and Potter’s fashion choices.  He points out how he could fix Potter.  Fix him, as if he were a faulty broomstick or a mildly-wronged potion.

So all Pansy has to do is think of a plan.

It comes to her as she is lying in bed, tossing her puffskein, Jonathon, into the air as he squealed with glee.  In reality, they have enough sexual tension between them that—in theory, at least—all that is needed is a spark.  A simple catalyst would set off the flames.

As for the spark—well.  Alcohol is very flammable.

 
  1. pandemon-ium posted this