create_serenity: (Mountains)
[personal profile] create_serenity
Title: What Can I Do?
Rating: R/18
Disclaimer: I don’t own these characters.
Warnings: H/D slash, very smutty
Author's Notes: This is probably the chapter you've all been waiting for since the very beginning! Also I just wanted to say sorry I'm not updating as regularly recently. I've entered quite a few fests so I've got a few other fics I'm having to work on in time to meet the deadlines. The next few chapters of this are already written but I'm thinking of rewriting chapter 17 completely. Don't worry I'm not losing interest in it or anything, updates will just be a little slower for a while :)



Chapter 1 here

Chapter 16: Recovery

The rest of the evening passed in pleasant harmony between the two of them. They played chess again, though in the end Draco resorted to actually giving Harry tips on how to play better. He had a tendency to sacrifice his pieces too often when there were other options available. If he hadn’t known that Weasley was actually very good at chess Draco might have put it down to some stupid Gryffindor trait, but as it was he decided that it was actually just Harry’s refusal to think things through properly. He was surprisingly good at taking instruction though and by the end of the evening Draco thought he might actually turn into a competent player if only he practised a bit more.

It was inevitable of course that he would end up in Harry’s bed again that night and the night after as well. Draco craved his company too much to bother resisting now, and it seemed Harry didn’t mind him being there. He accepted it just like he accepted everything else that seemed to be going on right now.

By the time Friday came around Draco knew he was walking around in a sort of daze. One where his feet didn’t seem to touch the floor and his head seemed to spin whenever he tried to think too much about things and life just seemed to be utterly brilliant in a way he couldn’t describe.

He drifted about his room humming, only moving because in this frame of mind he was too jittery to keep still. Harry was downstairs taking a Floo Call, but Draco knew he’d be finished soon and then his attention would be all on Draco again, intense and focussed, making him feel like the centre of the universe.

Draco’s wanderings took him over to the mirror and he looked at himself critically. Harry was probably right, he was thinner than he had been three months ago, the lack of physical activity meant he wasn’t eating as much and that in turn had cause the weight to drop off him. He sighed and raised his arms up to his head so that his useless lower arms dangled down his back. There was a thin smile on his face as he regarded the reflection in the mirror. Even his arms couldn’t bother him now as much as they used to.

Then it happened. Draco didn’t know how it happened, or even why, but there was one great heavy beat from his heart that he could feel reverberating through his whole body and then the blood seemed to rush through his veins and down his arms bringing them back to life.

He cried out and dropped them back to his sides, shaking them frantically as they tingled unpleasantly and the muscles twitched and convulsed of their own accord. By the time they had stopped he had dropped to his knees and was whimpering, partly in relief and partly in agony.

The sensations stopped as suddenly as they had come. Draco risked an attempt to wriggle his fingers only when it was clear they weren’t going to come back. The muscles felt stiff, and the movement felt unnatural, as if he was having to instruct every individual muscle as to what to do, when before such a gesture would have been automatic, but his fingers did twitch, and then when he made another experiment his whole arm moved.

“Oh yes,” he hissed and tried the other arm.

Harry had been right. He could feel that the muscles were weak, he certainly couldn’t clench his hand into a fist and he didn’t think he’d be able to do very much at all right now, but the feeling was back. He could feel his arms, he could feel his clothes against his arms and he could move.

He stared some more and then scrambled to his feet and flung himself down the stairs, not stopping running until he burst through the sitting room door.

“Harry!” he yelled, completely ignoring Granger’s head hanging in the Floo. “Harry!” He had to repeat it when the other man didn’t immediately turn round from where he was kneeling in front of the fire.

He did then, simply because Granger had stopped whatever she was saying and turned to look at Draco. Harry did so too and his face was creased into a frown that usually would have made Draco scowl in annoyance, but today he was too elated to care.

“I’m talking, Draco, you can wait five bloody minutes,” he snapped, and immediately turned back to the fire.

“Harry!” he knew his voice was an oddly delighted whine, but he didn’t care. He didn’t even care that Granger could hear him. “Pay attention to me!” He closed the distance between them and whacked Harry around the head with one hand.

“Ouch!” Harry whirled around again and glared up at him, “Don’t hit me, Draco you…. You hit me!” His eyes widened as realisation struck and he scrambled to his feet. “You hit me!” he repeated as if Draco might not be aware of it.

Draco just stared back at him, his expression locked in an elated grin that he thought was never going to fade.

“The curse has gone!” Harry’s face split into a grin that could rival Draco’s and then he flung his arms out at the same time as Draco and they fell into each other’s embrace, laughing and holding on as tightly as they could.

They carried on hugging, rocking slightly in each other’s arms, Draco ignoring the burn in his underused muscles as he forced them to carry on giving Harry the embrace he had been waiting so long to give, until a cough from the fireplace startled them and they jumped apart suddenly.

“Well, that’s a sight I never thought I’d see,” Granger said in amusement as Harry knelt down again looking sheepish, the colour flooding to his cheeks.

Draco on the other hand was far too elated to be embarrassed right now. He flung himself down in front of the fire, leaning so close that Granger actually reared her head back slightly. “Are you kidding, Granger?” he gasped, “I’d even hug you right now I’m so happy.”

To his surprise Granger actually chuckled at that, although there was no nastiness in the sound, just amusement. He blinked in surprise and drew back a little. It was true he hadn’t actually had any interaction with Granger since his trial several years ago, but even so he was surprised by the lack of animosity she was displaying towards him. In fact, he was surprised by the lack of animosity he felt towards her, although of course that might just be due to his current buoyant mood.

“I’m flattered, Malfoy,” she said finally, “But I think I’ll pass. Harry, you’d better take him to St Mungo’s; just because the curse is gone doesn’t mean there won’t be side effects.”

“Side effects?” Draco cut in, before Harry could speak.

Granger turned and regarded him with an expression he would almost have called compassionate. Almost. “Your muscles will have atrophied from lack of use. You need to see a Healer about what to do next.”

Draco relaxed. When she’d said side effects he’d been thinking of something much worse, but this he could cope with. Harry had already warned him about the muscle weakness he would experience, and right now not even the fact that he was suffering from it could undo his good mood. The end of the road was in sight and a weight he didn’t know he’d been carrying had been lifted from his shoulders: the fear that the Healers had been wrong and that the curse would never wear off had gone.

“All right,” Harry was saying when he paid attention again, “We’ll go now. I’ll talk to you tomorrow, ok?”

There was a final goodbye, during which even Draco consented to offer Granger a wave of his hand in farewell, before she disappeared from the fireplace. The moment she did Harry turned around and punched him lightly in the shoulder.

“So how does it feel?”

Instead of replying Draco simply grinned and flung himself onto the other man, knocking him to the floor before smacking him on the shoulder as hard as his muscles would allow. He managed to do it twice before a protesting Harry grabbed his arms and rolled them over, panting.

“What the fuck, Draco?” he gasped, apparently confused by the fact that Draco was still grinning at him like a loon.

“That was revenge for all the times you’ve been a prat over the last few months,” Draco said, as if this was obvious, “And it’s lucky for you I can’t hit any harder at the moment.”

Harry gaped at him but Draco simply licked his lips and gazed up at the other man suddenly feeling quite vulnerable in spite of his renewed independence. Harry was holding him down too easily for him to feel any other way.

“Are you going to beat me up now?” he asked, his throat suddenly feeling very dry. He didn’t know why; he didn’t really think Harry would actually beat him up. Why then was he feeling nervous? Why could he feel his heart pounding in his chest?

“No, I don’t think I will,” Harry said gently, seeming not to know what was going on himself. He released Draco’s arms and though Draco desperately wanted to wrap them around Harry he settled for leaning his elbows on the floor and letting just his hands rest either side of Harry’s ribcage.

There was one heavy moment of silence and then Draco realised he was doing it again. His head was tilted towards Harry, his lips were parted invitingly and he wanted the other man to kiss him.

Damn it. He went to turn away, but before his muscles could obey Harry was suddenly there, his mouth pressed gently against Draco’s, lips gliding and tongue probing lightly. There was one instant moment of pure dazzling surrender and then Draco rolled them over, pressing his lips down harder, forcing Harry to submit to his will as he kissed and licked and sucked at his lips so hard he thought he might actually draw blood, especially as Harry was responding with nips and licks of his own.

The kisses lasted until Draco realised he couldn’t keep himself balanced any longer. His arms were still too weak and his stomach muscles were trembling with the effort of holding himself up. He gave Harry one last forceful, closed mouth kiss and then dropped his head and weight onto Harry’s chest with a groan.

Somewhere above his hair Harry laughed. “We really have to stop doing that.”

“Doing what? Draco grumbled, trying unsuccessfully to flex his fingers and feeling annoyed at just how stiff they felt.

“Kissing.”

That was sufficiently odd that Draco ceased in his efforts and made a renewed attempt to raise himself up. When that failed he rolled off Harry’s chest and settled for lying on his side next to him so he could look over at him. “Why?” he asked, when Harry turned his head towards him.

“It’s just very… very…” Merlin, Harry had started blushing again. What the hell was wrong with him now? “Intimate,” he finished, which Draco thought was somewhat lame. Of course kissing was intimate, surely that was the point?

He blinked. Bloody hell. It was not ok to be intimate with Harry Potter. Was it?

“Right,” he said, trying to keep the strain out of his voice as his mind whirled. He scrambled to his feet. “Are we going to St Mungo’s then?”

Harry nodded and stood, heading out the room, Draco suspected that out of habit he’d gone to get their coats and he left him to it simply because it gave him a moment to think.

Harry was right, damn him. They really shouldn’t be kissing. Fucking was all very well, he needed some sort of release at the moment and Harry was the only convenient person available to do that with, but he certainly didn’t need to be kissing him. He didn’t even kiss Blaise. Hell, he only kissed the other blokes he slept with if they were really insistent about it. He didn’t even really like kissing that much. Sharing spit was disgusting as far as he was concerned. Kissing Harry Potter of all people should make him feel so repulsed he’d need a mouth full of cleaning charms just to get rid of the sensation. Instead he just found that his lips were tingling and his body kept begging for more without his permission.

Shit.

This curse had obviously fucked him up in more ways than one. He really needed to get a grip.

*************

Not too long later Draco found himself in a private room at St Mungo’s being attended to by one of their top specialists in muscle weakness and rehabilitation. Having The Chosen One with him certainly did have some advantages, Draco realised, as the woman fussed around him and was generally a lot more attentive and thorough than she would have been had Draco been alone.

“Now remember Mr Malfoy, you must do the exercise at least once a day, preferably twice a day,” she was saying. Draco checked her name badge again. It said Luella and Draco was having trouble working out if this was a first name or a surname. “Now lie on the bed please.”

Draco blinked at her in surprise, his musing about her name well and truly interrupted. “What?”

“The bed, Mr Malfoy. I need you to lie down. You’ll need to apply this cream first thing in the morning and last thing at night, I’ll do the first application now so you won’t have to do it until tomorrow. Of course you’ll probably have to find someone to do it for you, since you can’t reach.”

“Oh, right.” Draco tried desperately not to glance at Harry, though in the end he didn’t quite manage it. Harry was looking at the view out the window and didn’t seem to be listening. Draco wondered for the first time whether he really was going to keep his word about continuing to look after him now the curse had worn off. Since he had at least partial use of his hands was he now expecting Draco to move out and perhaps get one of his friends to take over?

Draco climbed onto the bed with a heavy heart. Three months ago he’d been dreading the idea of staying at Harry’s at all. Now he found he was dreading the thought of leaving even more.

Since his shirt was already off the woman immediately scooped a large blob of the cream onto her hands and then set about rubbing it into the top of his chest and shoulders before working her way down his arms all the way to his fingers. Once that was done she ordered him to turn over and repeated the process on his back. In this new position Draco had his head turned to the side and he could see that now Harry was paying very close attention, as if he was trying to memorise what the woman was doing. Draco felt his heart give a hopeful little jump. If Harry was that interested, did it mean he was expecting to have to do this?

“Now,” said the woman as her fingers worked busily, kneading and pressing at the muscles of Draco’s shoulders and upper arms, “You have a lot of tension here and your muscles are going to be stiff. This cream will help relieve that stiffness as well as a lot of the aches and pains you’re going to experience. I would think you’ll have to keep this up for about a week. You need to get whoever applies the cream to massage it deep into your muscles so that it can do its job.”

Draco nodded, deciding that it was rather a good job that the Healer was a middle aged woman, because a handsome young male Healer would definitely have caused him a bit of a problem right now.

After what seemed like a long time she finally seemed satisfied and allowed him to get up. His arms were tingling unpleasantly, but the Healer was right, his muscles did feel considerably less stiff.

“Your strength will come back gradually as your muscles grow again. I’m giving you some muscle-replenishing potion to help the process. One dose a day for the next week. Everything else will have to be by your own hard work, Mr Malfoy.”

“How long do you think it will take?” Harry had spoken, almost for the first time since they’d entered the room. The Healer looked at him, as if surprised he was taking an interest, but then seemed to come to a realisation.

“It will be a few weeks before full strength returns, but you should notice a significant difference by the end of this week with the treatments I’ve suggested. He’ll be able to return to work then so long as he only does desk duty. It will probably take longer than that for his fine motor grip to return so any writing will have to be done with a Quotation Quill.” She turned back to Draco and regarded him suspiciously. “In the meantime I suggest you don’t try to pick up anything delicate.”

“I’ll bear that in mind,” said Draco dryly, thinking that right now he’d just settle for being able to pick up his wand.

“Thank you, Healer Luella,” Harry said, inclining his head slightly and accepting the box full of potions and creams that she was holding out for Draco to take, “I’ll just take these shall I?” he said with a smile that Draco thought was full of knives, “They probably count as something delicate.”

“Oh, um… yes of course.” The Healer seemed embarrassed at her own mistake, or possibly at the silent reprimand that was in Harry’s eyes. The one that suggested he was ashamed of her for not treating Draco better and for expecting Draco to do something that right now was impossible. Draco felt his heart thump just a little harder at that.

His heart thumped even harder when Harry turned and gave him a smile that seemed to reach out and wrap him in warmth and something else Draco couldn’t quite identify. It was almost acceptance, but Draco hadn’t been accepted by anyone in so long that he’d forgotten what that felt like.

Silently he followed Harry back through the corridors of St Mungo’s and let him Apparate them home.
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