Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter or Ouran High School Host Club.
Harry took a deep breath and readjusted his new green sweater in front of the mirror for the fifth time. It looked good, maybe, at least Ranka had agreed it did. His new jeans were comfortable, and for once even though his hair was still messy it apparently had 'charm'. He was freshly showered, hair dried with a quick spell, all his clothes were fine. There was nothing left to do to prepare for the date but wait for Mitsukuni to arrive.
But for some reason his heart wouldn't stop pounding.
Harry flung himself onto his bed and hugged one of his plush pillows. He'd faced down armies and two of the most powerful dark lords in the last century, so why was he so nervous? He could handle going on a date, his first date, with Mitsukuni. This was going to be fun, right? None of Mitsukuni's other outings had ever been anything but fun, so why wouldn't his stomach stop doing flips?
Despite Ranka's coaching and the books he'd read, which were questionable at best, he didn't think he was very prepared. But he'd completed missions with less information before, so while that uncertainty wasn't comfortable it also wasn't unfamiliar. He was probably going to embarrass himself a lot, but he did that all the time anyway. He wished his nerves would just calm down, but that probably wouldn't happen until he came out to Mitsukuni.
Should he tell Mitsukuni that he was asexual tonight, or was that something that shouldn't be brought up on a first date? Mitsukuni deserved to know, but what if he didn't react well and it ruined their whole night? This sucked, Harry would almost rather face another dark lord than risk that possible rejection.
Three loud knocks came from the front door, startling Harry up into the air and scrambling to land on his feet. Mitsukuni's large, bright aura was just outside, and somehow he hadn't noticed him arriving. He quickly smoothed out any new wrinkles and rushed to the door, was he ever going to be ready normally? This was just like the first time Mitsukuni took him to the cat cafe, but at least this time he knew Mitsukuni was coming and he wasn't picking himself up off the floor.
Harry pulled his front door open and there stood Mitsukuni widely grinning behind a huge, colorful bouquet. He peered at him from behind the flowers, eyes going wide as he looked Harry up and down with a flush of pink on his cheeks. "Wow Harii, you look great!"
Harry felt himself blush, maybe dressing up was worth it after all. "Thanks! Um, you look great too!"
He stepped to the side and Mitsukuni walked in with an excited spring to his steps. That was what he was supposed to say, right? But even if it wasn't, it wasn't wrong. Behind the bouquet Mitsukuni had clearly spent a lot of time getting ready. His hair was styled and he was wearing a black silk shirt decorated with pink flowers outlined in yellow, and he'd even put some glittery makeup on his cheeks and something around his eyes to make them pop. Harry hadn't thought he'd ever see Mitsukuni in makeup since he already had perfect skin, but Harry hadn't considered using it for decoration like that. It was pretty, and now he was regretting not taking Ranka up on his offer of putting some on them. He'd do it next time for sure.
"These are for you!"
Mitsukuni handed him the flowers and Harry almost jumped at how their magic reached for each other when their fingers almost touched. It shouldn't do that, he'd just seen Mitsukuni that morning! But up close all the flowers were even prettier and smelled amazing. The base of the bouquet was white lilies and then red and blue roses were sprinkled in. He'd never seen a blue rose in person before, only in pictures online.
Harry hid a smile in the flowers and freed up a hand. "Thanks. I got something for you too."
He summoned it from the kitchen, a single pink rose with a white ribbon tied around the stem and handed it over. Mitsukuni's eyes widened with surprise and he brought it up to his nose to sniff. The edges of a grin peeked out behind the flower, and his cheeks began to blush as bright as its petals. "Oh. I didn't expect you to get me flowers too."
Harry huffed. "Why wouldn't I? Did you think I wasn't taking this date seriously?"
"No! Not at all!" Mitsukuni frantically shook his head and backtracked. "Thank you. I really like it! It was just unexpected. Whenever I've imagined my first date I was always giving some, not receiving them."
Harry shrugged, he didn't think it was such a big deal. He'd never thought about going on a first date at all until recently, but that's what his brief research and Ranka said he should do. "Well I'm glad you like it."
Harry hummed to hide a smile, then sniffed his bouquet again and brushed one of the white petals with his finger. "Did you know that lilies are my favorite flower?" He would have liked them a lot anyway because of his mother's name, but he'd fallen in love with the curve of their petals the first time he ever saw one. Also they smelled really good.
"I didn't, but I'll remember that now! I arranged the bouquet based on the flowers' meanings."
"Like flower language?"
"Yeah! It's still used in wizarding society to send messages, but the exact meanings differ by culture. Do you want to know what these mean?"
Mitsukuni stepped closer until the large bouquet was the only space between them. Harry glanced down at the colorful arrangement, pointedly feeling the weight of Mitsukuni's eyes watching his reaction.
"The blue roses are traditional for soulmates," he said. "They mean love at first sight, and attaining the impossible. The white lilies are traditional too, for how pure a soulmate bond is."
"And the red roses?"
Mitsukuni shrugged his shoulders and his grin turned shy. "Those are pretty straightforward. They're for love."
Harry blushed and looked away, but the single pink flower in Mitsukuni's hands was now screaming at him and he needed to know what he'd unintentionally said with it.
"What does a pink rose mean?"
Mitsukuni's smile grew wider which he tried and failed to hide behind his flower. "Trust and happiness."
"Ah," Harry tried not to think about how appropriate his choice ended up being. "I just chose it because you like pink."
Mitsukuni giggled. "I like it because of that too. Are you ready to go?"
"One sec." Harry quickly conjured two vases with water and set his bouquet in it, then Mitsukuni smiled and carefully placed his lone flower in the other. He grabbed his phone, wallet, and keys then turned back to Mitsukuni with a smile.
"Okay, now I'm ready. What's the plan?"
Mitsukuni playfully smirked, almost dancing as they stepped out of the apartment. "I'm not telling, you'll have to wait and see."
A sudden pang of hunger hit Harry's stomach, reminding him that he hadn't eaten since breakfast. It wasn't too late to go back and quickly eat a granola bar, but he didn't want to ruin dinner. "There's going to be food, right?"
Mitsukuni laughed and skipped down the hallway, quickly disappearing down the stairs at the other end. Harry huffed and walked slowly to punish him - he knew Mitsukuni would be waiting anxiously at the bottom but this is what he got for abandoning him without saying whether there would be dinner.
Haruhi's door opened and Ranka stepped out, wearing a baggy t-shirt and half-through getting ready for his shift at the bar tonight. "Heading out for your date now, Hari? You look so cute!"
Harry smiled at him. "Yep! Mitsukuni's waiting downstairs."
Ranka sighed and pulled out his phone. "If he was here I'd get a picture of you both together, but I guess I'll have to settle for whatever photographer Kyoya has hidden away. There'll be one, right?"
Harry snorted. "Yeah, probably."
"Excellent. Ok, smile!"
Harry did, and then Ranka snapped the picture. "Excellent. You're all ready then?"
"I guess, but I still have no idea what we're doing."
Ranka hummed, then pulled out a folded slip of paper and handed it to Harry. "At some point try to ask him these questions I wrote down. They should help you figure out how compatible you both are."
Harry resisted the urge to open up the paper and peek at the questions, he didn't have time for it right now. "Got it."
"Good boy," Ranka said, giving him a quick pat on the head. "Alright I have to finish getting ready for work. Have fun, and don't stay out with that boy too late!"
"Will do, thanks!"
When Harry finally managed to slowly drag his feet down the stairs to the street, hands in his pockets and slouching like a sloth, he almost turned back around once he saw what was waiting. A long white limousine was parked out front and taking up most of the road. Some of the neighbors and other random strangers had all stopped what they were doing to take pictures. And Mitsukuni was waiting for him at its open door, bouncing from foot to foot.
All hope that they were going to spend a calm, relaxing evening together died a swift death. Harry didn't know what he was expecting, but he should have known that anything Mitsukuni and the other hosts had planned for a first date would be extremely over the top. Haruhi's text earlier made a lot more sense now.
Surprisingly though, Harry wasn't dreading what was coming at all. He might not have ever spoken to Mitsukuni again if he'd tried something like this the first time they went out together, but now he knew that he'd enjoy whatever it was as long as they were together. So Harry tucked his head to hide his face and stiffly walked to the limo. Even if he knew he would enjoy the destination that didn't mean he had to enjoy the journey there.
"Is this really necessary?" he whined.
"Of course!" Mitsukuni chirped. "It's our first date after all, it needs to be special."
Harry sighed. This wasn't an argument worth having, or at least not one he was confident he could win against Mitsukuni's stubbornness. He quickly slipped inside and sat down on the leather seats before anyone stared at him even more. Mitsukuni came in right after and closed the door, and then the driver started the limo and pulled out.
Mitsukuni smiled and settled in next to him as jazz music softly played from the speakers. With just the two of them all the extra room was a little too extravagant, but at least they had privacy with the car's tinted windows and the divider between them and the driver. It didn't feel casual enough for him to relax into the plush leather seats.
"Do you like riding in a limo better than an SUV?" Mistukuni asked. "When I took you on the date to the cat cafe you got a little carsick but I wasn't sure if that was because you didn't like riding in cars or because you were nervous about being alone with me back then and-"
"This is fine," Harry interrupted before Mitsukuni rambled more. "It's kind of cool, but it's weird having so much room. But I'm not carsick, at least not yet, and that also wasn't a date."
"I umm…" Mitsukuni blushed and froze. "I might have considered that a date at the time."
Harry huffed. "If it was one-sided, it doesn't count. This is our first date."
"Right, of course it is! The cat cafe was fun, but tonight is going to be way more special, something neither of us will ever forget."
Warmth crept up Harry's cheeks at Mitsukuni's words, but a seed of anxiety also curdled in his stomach. He hoped tonight would be fun, but he was also bound to ruin some of Mitsukuni's plans. And what if Mitsukuni reacted poorly to Harry being ace? The whole night would be ruined if they had a great time and then that revelation soured it, maybe it would be better to get that out of the way before they got started.
Harry's tongue was dry, but he opened his mouth anyway and asked the question. "Hey, what do you think about sex?"
Mitsukuni launched out of his seat and hit his head on the car's ceiling with a loud bang. "WHAT?"
"Are you okay?!" Harry slid closer to check up on him but Mitsukuni quickly waved him off.
"Yeah I'm fine, but what kind of a question is that!"
"I just wanted to know what you thought about it!"
Mitsukuni cleared his throat, his face bright red, and settled back down in his seat. "I guess we can talk about it. But why?"
Harry's heart pounded and his hands itched to twist into his sweater or twist his magic and apparate away. That could have been smoother, he should have led into it better and now Mitsukuni was already uncomfortable.
"Well, Ranka helped me figure out some stuff while helping me get ready for the date. And one of those things was… was that I'm asexual. I guess I just wanted to know if that was a deal breaker for you before the date really got started. It's okay if it is, just have the limo turn around and we can forget about this."
Harry looked down into his lap and clasped his hands together, trying his best not to let his sudden nausea show. He hadn't learned much from those books he borrowed, but one thing that they, Ranka, and his few hours of internet research agreed on was that sexual compatibility was important in a relationship. Some people would never want a relationship with him. He was pretty neutral to having sex or not in the future, but his lack of interest or attraction in a partner could be enough for them to not work out.
Two hands smacked into the leather on each side of Harry's head and he jolted up in surprise. Mitsukuni had jumped out of his seat and boxed him in with his arms, his face so serious that all Harry could do was stare. He hadn't even thought it was possible to kabedon someone in a car, but then again this was a limo.
"Harii, sex had nothing to do with me falling in love with you. And even if we never have sex I'd still want to be with you for the rest of our lives. I don't even know if I ever want sex yet, I'm still dealing with all the new hormones from not being cursed in a child's body and I don't even want to think about it for a long time. So don't worry about this, okay? I know you were, but I absolutely still want to date you. Got it?"
Harry gulped, a flood of heat and emotion running through him and all he could do was nod. "Okay, got it."
"Good!" Mitsukuni sat back down with a smile.
A large wave of relief crashed into Harry as he slumped back in his seat, carrying with it a pleasantly warm, fuzzy sensation that tingled in his limbs. It was an immense struggle keeping his lips from breaking out into a large smile. Despite the rocky start that couldn't have gone better, being so worried over it felt so stupid now. Of course Mitsukuni had reacted well, Mitsukuni was the best. And it was so affirming to hear he was still working things out for himself, Harry didn't feel so weird only figuring out he was ace today anymore. The rest of the date was going to be amazing now, he was sure of it.
The limo abruptly stopped, briefly jerking Harry into Mitsukuni's arms before he was gently placed back in the seat.
"We're here!" Mitsukuni opened the limo's door and bounced outside. The sunlight contrasted with the limo's dark, tinted interior gave him a bright glow around his silhouette as he held out his hand. "Coming?"
"Yeah." Harry stepped out and took Mitsukuni's hand. That was a tradition for dates after all, and if holding Mitsukuni's hand helped that fuzzy feeling stay for longer then that was no one's business but his own.
The limo dropped them off and then immediately drove away, leaving Harry looking around in confusion. They were on an ordinary street a few minutes from downtown, the buildings on either side of the street were just boring businesses or apartments. There wasn't anything nearby that Mitsukuni would have chosen for their date.
Mitsukuni giggled. "The date's not here, we have to walk a little bit to get there. I didn't want all the attention of the limo dropping us off and anyone following where we're going."
"Oh, gotcha." Harry's cheeks heated up as Mitsukuni led him down the road. He must have looked silly, but as long as it was only Mitsukuni he didn't mind much. Hearing him laugh like that was always worth the embarrassment.
It only took a few blocks before their destination was clear. There was a huge park up ahead, and he and Mitsukuni seamlessly blended into the other people going in. After only a few steps they left the green lawn behind and entered a dense forest with trees taller than his apartment building, and from there Mitsukuni led him down a side trail, over a cute little stream, and into another trail. All the city's noise became distant, and finally they were alone with the privacy Harry had expected for a first date.
"So your date plan is a hike through the park?" Harry asked. "This is pretty modest, I thought you were taking me somewhere like a candlelit dinner in a five-star restaurant."
"That's so cliche! Of course I wouldn't do that for our first date."
"Ah, that's too bad," Harry mused. "I think it'd be nice. It's probably cliche for a reason right?" He'd never gotten to eat in a really fancy restaurant before, and there were tons of different food from Japan and around the world he wanted to try.
Mitsukuni's hand stiffened and he stumbled, and Harry raised his eyebrows. Mitsukuni recovered quickly, of course, but that was still way out-of-character. "What's wrong?"
"Nothing, it's nothing!" Mitsukuni shot him an obviously forced grin and bounced back to normal. "We'll do that on our next date then!"
Harry hummed. Mitsukuni couldn't lie to save his life, at least to him, but that wasn't worth calling out. "Pretty bold of you to assume there'll be a second date."
Mitsukuni smirked and gently squeezed Harry's hand. "I'm pretty confident."
"Hmm, I don't know, I thought you were going to be more experienced but you haven't even swept me off my feet once yet. What are all those dates at the Host Club good for if you can't perform when it matters?"
"Urgh, those don't count!" Mitsukuni whined. "That's all an act and everyone knows it so they aren't real dates."
Harry snorted. Maybe all the Hosts knew, and possibly a few of the girls, but he only needed to visit the club for a few minutes to know most of them were there for real.
"You must have learned at least a little bit about romance. What would 'Honey-senpai' do if he was taking me on a date."
Mitsukuni giggled. "There probably wouldn't be much romance involved. I'd just act cute, ask about your day, and then we'd eat cake. I've picked up some tricks from the other hosts though, do you want me to try them?"
"Sure. What would Tamaki do? He's the king, so he'd have something good right?"
Mitsukuni abruptly got down on one knee and grabbed Harry's other hand, and then an illusion of bright sparkles surrounded them as he looked up at him with shining brown eyes.
"Harii, my prince, my soulmate! Neither the sun during the day, nor the stars, at night can outshine your beauty!"
Harry's lips twitched but he kept a straight face. How far was Mitsukuni going to take this? He quickly searched his memory for Haruhi's stories of the host club girls, then playfully swooned and giggled into his hand. "Oh Mitsukuni, you devil! You can't speak such things out loud, what if someone hears and it gets back to my father?"
"Don't worry darling, if it came to that I would fight even your father to prove my love! The Empress herself could send legions of soldiers to stop us, and they still wouldn't be strong enough to keep us apart."
Mitsukuni lightly kissed the back of his hand. Then, slowly turning his head up to give Harry a long, sultry stare through his long eyelashes, he finished with a sly smirk and flirtuouslly winked.
He held their stare, and Harry only lasted one second before laughter burst out of him and he turned away, tears prickling from his eyes. That was easily one of the funniest things he had ever seen.
"Hey, I was being serious!" Mitskuni dramatically crouched down and sulked, just like how Haruhi described Tamaki whenever he didn't get his way in the Host Club, and Harry laughed even harder.
"Stop it already, I get it!" Harry gasped out, closing his eyes to ignore Mitsukuni and try to breathe. Even though Harry couldn't see him, he heard him erupt into giggles too and for almost a minute they just stood there in the middle of the trail as they struggled to contain themselves.
"You're really good at making that stuff up on the spot," Harry said. Maybe it shouldn't have been a surprise considering Mitsukuni was a Host Club member, but this was Mitsukuni. Harry hadn't thought the range to perform like that was in his skill-set.
"Thanks! Sometimes it's hard with the girls at the club, but it's really easy with you since I'm always thinking stuff like that about you anyway."
Harry blinked. "I thought you were joking?"
Mitsukuni huffed. "I was! But I still meant every word I said, I just normally wouldn't say them with all those flourishes like Tama-chan."
All Harry's thoughts ground to a halt, and when his mind caught back up his face flushed with embarrassment. People did not seriously say, or think, stuff like that! Especially not about someone like Harry. With that giant, stupid scar on his forehead he'd never be beautiful, but he couldn't detect even a hint of a lie from Mitsukuni who stared at him like there was nothing weird at all with what he just said.
Harry marched farther up the trail so Mitsukuni couldn't see his blush. "So when's dinner? I'm getting hungry."
Mitsukuni ran up front, his lips quirked in a knowing smirk like he knew exactly what his words had done. He brandished his arm toward a side trail and bowed. "This way then, your majesty. Dinner is right now!"
Harry huffed, but still took Mitsukuni's hand when he reached out. Thankfully Mitsukuni was content with only holding his hand as they walked down the path, he was still so flustered that he'd probably end up stumbling over his words.
Mitsukuni had been flirting with him, right? And when Harry played along, was he flirting back? It hadn't felt any different from the normal back-and-forth joking they did together, but this time they were also on a date. The joke was about Mitsukuni wooing him. Had it been working? Harry clenched his free hand to distract himself and prevent another embarrassing blush. He didn't hate it, not exactly, but the way his heart squirmed wasn't comfortable either.
Harry didn't notice that they reached their destination until Mitsukuni stopped walking and tugged on his hand. They were in a meadow that was filled with some of the softest grass Harry had ever seen and colorful wildflowers speckled throughout it. A stream snaked through the center, and the forest's tall trees formed a dense wall that separated them from the outside world. Paper lamps hung from their branches, ready to fill the clearing with warm light as soon as the sun went down, and in the middle of it all lay a large red, purple, and gold rug with a picnic basket. Also, thankfully, there was a ward around the whole clearing that repelled bugs.
"You got this ready today?" He knew from Haruhi that the Hosts had been together most of the day, so Mitsukuni couldn't have had much time to plan or set things up.
"Yep! As soon as I decided what to do for the date it was pretty easy to arrange… with some help from the Hosts."
"Well, you guys did a great job." It was more modest than Harry had expected, but he couldn't deny the enchanting, almost magical atmosphere. Maybe some of that had been Mitsukuni's special touch, but Harry would have to give the Hosts a little more credit the next time he heard they were planning something.
Mitsukuni proudly grinned and led him to the rug. They sat down, so close their knees bumped and then Mitsukuni bashfully scooted a few inches farther away. As Harry settled down and Mitsukuni pulled the picnic basket closer, he immediately noticed a faint hum of magic in the rug's plush piles that hinted at some kind of enchantment. Were they just for comfort, or for something more? It was really soft and plush, and the fractal geometric pattern and bright colors were pretty enough for the rug to easily be a wall decoration. Whoever had made it had clearly spent as much time weaving in the magic as they spent on the rug itself, or maybe it was done at the same time.
"Harii," Mitsukuni whined. "You're on a date with me, not the rug! If you keep staring at it I'll have to eat all this food by myself."
Harry blinked and looked up from the colorful patterns. An extravagant arrangement of sandwiches and cakes were laid out and Mitsukuni was holding out a wine glass with a drink already poured. Harry apologetically cringed and grabbed it, then took a quick sip before talking. It was really good, some kind of delicious sparkling grape juice that wasn't available where he and Haruhi shopped.
"Sorry! It's a really cool rug though, where'd you get it?"
"My father, brother, and I went on vacation to Baghdad when I graduated middle school and I got it at the magical street market. That was probably one of my favorite trips we've ever done!"
"Huh, cool." Maybe Harry and Mitsukuni could travel somewhere like that on school breaks someday.
Actually, the more Harry thought about it the more he liked the idea. The Dursleys had taken Dudley to tons of places but of course Harry had never been allowed to go. Once his birthday passed and he didn't have to worry about exploding, there wouldn't be anything holding him back from taking a vacation. "Have you travelled a lot then?"
"Yeah, a decent amount. My father tries to take my brother and I out of the country once a year, and I've gone to a lot of foreign countries for missions too."
"Ever been to the UK?"
Mitsukuni shook his head. "Most of my missions are in Asia, and Magical Britain doesn't have much to offer tourists if you're not into ancient druidic circles or castles. My father usually took us to the hidden enclaves or countries with fully-magical national parks. And, well, Britain hasn't been the safest place to travel to for the last few years anyway."
"Fair." Harry wouldn't have wanted to visit while Voldemort was still alive either. "We should plan some trips. Even though I've been in Japan for a while I still haven't been to much of it. I think the farthest I've traveled is to Nekozawa's beach house and your estate."
Mitsukuni's eyes lit up. "That's a great idea! I can't believe we haven't done anything like that yet. I know I have school, but it would have been easy to portkey or apparate somewhere on the weekend. Do you already know where you want to go first?"
"Everywhere?" Harry shrugged. "Kyoto might be a good start. I've only ever briefly visited the magical district there, but I haven't been to any of the tourist sites. It'd be cool to see the big temples. And I don't know where the best place for this is, but an onsen trip would be fun." With how hectic their lives had been lately, both he and Mitsukuni deserved to relax in a hot spring all day.
"Yes, we should definitely do that!" Mitsukuni said with a blush. He'd been blushing all night, but this one was suspicious until Harry realized why and he rolled his eyes. Pervert.
Harry took a bite out of his sandwich and washed it down with some juice. "Anyway, I don't know what people usually talk about on a first date but Ranka gave me some questions to ask you, to make sure we're compatible I guess. Is that fine or did you have something else planned?"
"Ask away!" Mitsukuni grinned. "I'll never turn down the chance to learn more about you. I have something else planned later, but I didn't plan out every minute or everything we'd talk about, despite Kyoya's attempt at a spreadsheet."
Harry snorted and pulled out Ranka's questions. Micromanaging a date that much sounded like something the shadow king would do, he couldn't wait to hear from Haruhi what that planning session was like. "Alright, question one. Are you religious?"
Mitsukuni furrowed his brow in confusion. "Do you mean like afterlife beliefs or the supernatural? I mean we're in Japan, you've already met some of the spirits here."
"Umm… I think I'm missing something. Religion is religion, right?"
Mitsukuni's jaw dropped, and he stared at Harry for an uncomfortably long moment before he sprung back up in realization. "Oh! Ok, I think this is a cultural thing. You grew up with non-magicals right?"
"I did," Harry cautiously replied. The less he said about the Dursleys the better, he did not want to ruin their date talking about them tonight.
"Well, religion as a concept is pretty different for magicals and non-magicals. We have proof of a soul and the afterlife, and there's tons of recorded meetings with higher beings like gods. There are some faith differences about creation and the origin of magic, but for most magicals religion is how we interact with higher beings like the spirits or gods. Japan mainly practices Shinto, like me and Takashi, or Buddhism. I think most British magicals are Pagan."
Harry's brain was strained just trying to keep track of all the nouns Mitsukuni just said. "I've never heard anything about this before."
Mitsukuni giggled. "Sorry, that was a lot wasn't it? Dealing with spirits isn't much of an issue in Britain since the Seelie and Unseelie Courts left our dimension a thousand years ago, so it probably doesn't come up often. Spirits and yokai are still really active here though so everyone knows at least a little about sealing them away or keeping them happy."
"Wait… the Fae were real?!"
His incredulous stare was met with a long, blank one from Mitsukuni. "Harii... your education sucked."
Harry winced. "Agreed, maybe I should hire a tutor or go back to school. I've lived in the magical world since I was eleven but I'm still always learning new things about it." In hindsight, maybe it was obvious that only learning magical theory and combat didn't prepare him for the real world.
"You should!" Mitsukuni vehemently nodded and took a stern bite of his sandwich. "Do you even know about the hidden magical countries? Next time I come over to your place I'm bringing a map! Some are unplottable, but you won't believe how different the borders are for the Americas!"
"Sounds good!" Harry raised his glass and took a drink, meeting Mitsukuni's eyes mid-sip doing the same. Several seconds into their stare both their lips quirked up and Harry had to hold his laugh in so he didn't spill.
Then Mitsukuni abruptly stopped, pulled out his phone, and rapidly sent off a text message before putting it away again.
"What was that?" Harry asked.
"Just an idea," Mitsukuni deflected. "I'll let you know if anything comes from it."
Harry nodded and set his glass back down. "Ok. Well, question one was more informative than I expected. Still up for question number two?"
"Of course. How bad could it be?"
Harry glanced down at the long slip of paper, then looked back up at Mitsukuni.
"Do you want kids?"
Mitsukuni choked, his face suddenly glowing bright red as he coughed and took another drink to clear his throat. "Harii you can't just ask that out of nowhere!"
"But it was on the list!"
Mitsukuni drooped down and suspiciously glared at the paper in Harry's hand. "I'm starting to doubt Ranka's list. People usually ask that before getting married, not on their first date!"
Harry sighed, he was embarrassed asking this too but it was important. "Doesn't that make them good questions though? We're soulmates, so if dating works out we'd probably get married eventually right? We should figure out if we're compatible long-term before this gets more complicated."
Mitsukuni's eyes went wide and he sheepishly looked down at his drink. "I guess you're right," he mumbled. "In that case, umm, yeah I think I'd like kids. Someday. Eventually. Not anytime soon, a few years after graduating college at the earliest, and I'm expected to have at least two as the Haninozuka heir."
"Ok," Harry replied. He'd forgotten Mitsukuni was nobility in Japan, even the wizarding families in Britain got really weird about having heirs. "I'm not completely against them, but I'm not super enthusiastic about the idea. I'll have to think about it some more."
"Really, why not?" Mitsukuni asked. "They're so cute, even when they're a handful they're adorable!"
Yeah... Harry was absolutely not going to get into how the only example of parents he'd had in his life was the Dursley's tonight so he just shrugged and changed the subject. "So you're going to college next year when you graduate from Ouran? What for?"
"Mmmm, probably." Mitsukuni drummed his fingers on his thigh and sipped his drink. "I'm already accepted into Ouran University's engineering program and as the captain of their martial arts club, but General Shinkai has also been interested in sending me to other countries to help train their special forces. Flex my strength and get some good-will in return, you know. So if that happens I'll end up deferring for a year."
"Oh, well, it would be fun to travel the world like that."
"Yeah! I won't consider it though if they don't let me come back to Japan often or let you come along or visit me, there's no way I'd survive for very long without seeing you every day."
Harry glanced down at his juice and took a drink, Mitsukuni's earnest smile suddenly a little too intense for him. He wouldn't say it out loud but he felt exactly the same way. He and Mitsukuni spent so much time together now that he'd miss him after just a day apart too. "Why engineering?"
"Well I like math, and calculating things to build huge buildings or design different products to help people sounds a lot more fun than pure theory. I'll end up teaching at the dojo and managing the Haninozuka estate anyway, but it'll be fun to learn about it while I can."
"That's cool. It's like how math is used to balance all the magic frequencies in spell-creation then?"
"Yeah, kind of!"
He'd known that Mitsukuni's favorite subject at Ouran was math, but he hadn't expected him to like it enough to keep using it after graduating with all the other things he had to do. He figured most noble families wouldn't allow their kids to study something technical like engineering, instead forcing them into something eccentric or respectable like business or literature, but then again Mitsukuni seemed to have a lot more freedom than most heirs - or at least he did now.
"You know," Harry teasingly said. "With all the martial arts and Host Club flirting I didn't expect you to be such a huge nerd too. Where's this side of you been hiding, huh? All this time I thought you were a huge playboy."
"Harii!" Mitsukuni whined with a pout. "I haven't been hiding anything, it just hasn't come up! And I'm not a flirt!"
"Sure, sure, whatever you say," Harry aloofly smiled. Mitsukuni jutted his lip out even further and Harry finally lost control and laughed, and a moment later Mitsukuni cracked and joined him.
If nothing else, this date at least taught Harry that he needed to tease Mitsukuni more. The face he made when pouting was just too cute.
They didn't end up getting through many of Ranka's other questions, but within a few hours of talking all the food was gone, the sun had fully set, and all the lanterns and fairy lights the Hosts had prepared illuminated the clearing in a warm, yellow glow. It was definitely too late to get through the rest tonight, so Harry resolved to finish them off on the next date instead.
With the blanket now cleared, Harry and Mitsukuni laid side-by-side on the rug, stuffed full of sandwiches and cake with barely an inch between them as they idly chatted, not flirting or shoving each other after teasing nearly as much as he'd expected. It was nice, and to the Host Club's credit their plan for this first date ended up being quite cunning. This summer night was just chilly enough that he didn't want to move away from the warmth constantly radiating off Mitsukuni. Either of them could have cast a weak warming charm to fix it, but Mitsukuni very noticeably didn't so Harry decided not to either. He didn't mind the cuddling, or the happy thrum of their magic when their sides brushed, and it would have been mean to ruin Mitsukuni's plan with a quick snap of his fingers.
Harry, of course, didn't then expect Mitsukuni's phone to give a small, bouncy beep and for him to then lean closer with a mischievous wink. "It's time! Alright Harii, check this out!"
"Check what out?"
Mitsukuni snapped his fingers twice with a quick rhythm and the carpet under their bodies abruptly sung with magic, so loud to Harry's senses that he was stunned for several seconds. When he regained his sight, the carpet's beautiful patterns were glowing with the same vibrant colors as their threads and it was floating, hovering even with the lowest branches of the trees that surrounded them.
"Your carpet can fly?!"
Mitsukuni grinned. "Of course it can, it's magic!"
Harry grinned back. He hadn't gone flying, at least just for fun, in years. He sunk his magic into the carpet and was immediately impressed at the complexity of the levitation and anti-gravity enchantments woven into every fiber. The carpet welcomed his magic, eagerly wrapping around him like a warm blanket, but simultaneously so excited that it was almost vibrating. It wanted to go fast. It wanted to fly.
"Do you mind if I take over?"
"But Harii," Mitsukuni jokingly whined. "Don't you want me to show you the world? Or at least Tokyo?"
Harry snorted, they'd just watched that movie together with Aisaka and Hedwig about a week ago. "Shouldn't I be saying that? You're the one with a pet tiger."
Mitsukuni laughed. "Good point! Take it away then my prince!"
Harry's chest once again felt warm and fuzzy at Mitsukuni's words, just like when he'd flirted with those same words before dinner, or maybe it was the carpet's erratic magic was mixing with his own. He reached out and gripped the carpet's edge with both hands and Mitsukuni did the same, brushing their hands as their bodies snugly fit together in the dip their weight made in the rug. "Ok then, hold on tight!"
After a quick check that the carpet's invisibility charm was active, Harry accelerated them around the meadow and then shot them up into the sky. Mitsukuni whooped and Harry grinned before leveling them off once they were about half as high as the buildings downtown. Seeing Tokyo endlessly sprawling out under them, brightly lit by all it's streetlights and windows and colorful billboards, was absolutely stunning.
Without slowing down Harry sped them through the open corridors of Tokyo's streets in the air and the carpet happily moved to his whims. Even if he wasn't on a broom it was amazing flying through the air like this again, and using the carpet so Mitsukuni could be with him made it even better. He gasped whenever Harry took a sharp corner, nearly turning the carpet sideways to fly parallel to the buildings' windows, and always broke out in delighted laughter after a steep dive. Sharing this with him was special, and even while it was happening Harry knew he was going to cherish it forever.
Once he'd had his fill of adrenalin, Harry slowed down and made the carpet leisurely drift through downtown. It was more than happy to take control with only the slightest direction from Harry's magic, and now that they didn't need to worry about high-speed wind or aerodynamics he and Mitsukuni sat up cross-legged in the middle. Mitsukuni was nearly vibrating with excitement, and as soon as Harry settled in he grabbed his shoulders and gleefully shook him back and forth.
"Harii that was amazing! Where'd you learn to do that?"
Harry grinned back and sheepishly shrugged. "It was nothing. I've always been a natural flier, but this was my first time trying it without a broom."
Mitsukuni grinned back, his eyes twinkling with sparks, and then suddenly his grin disappeared and he leaned forward. Harry's chest tightened with flustered anticipation the closer he got but then he just became confused. Instead of cupping his cheeks or anything else he'd read in those books, Mitsukuni's hands reached for the sides of his head and clasped over his ears.
A thunderous crack shook the air behind Harry, making them flinch as sparks rained down. It was horrible, even slightly muted by Mitsukuni's hands, and he let his magic flare around them and readied it to solidify into a shield if the next attack came too close. Two flares soared up into the sky in front of him, going much higher than the carpet and sharply whistling as they ascended, and then exploded into huge fragmented stars of pink and gold. Harry craned his neck and stared at their falling sparks until they faded, then relaxed with a sigh. They were just fireworks. But even with Mitsukuni's hands the sound they made had still been almost as loud as the last, and it had to be even worse for Mitsukuni with how sensitive his ears were. Quickly, before the next round exploded, Harry leaned over and covered his ears too.
As all the fireworks bloomed, shaking the air and lighting up Mitsukuni's face with bright colorful flashes even as more and more were launched, every detail burned into Harry's brain. The gentle curve of his lips, the soft locks of his blond hair framing his cheeks, the warm, tender look in his eyes as he stared back into Harry's own, his hands solid and warm as they pressed into Harry's ears. In this impossibly long moment Mitsukuni was the only other person in the world.
At least, he was until another sharp boom made them both cringe in pain. Then Harry, flying thousands of feet above the ground in a magic carpet with his soulmate, remembered that he was a wizard. He cast a beeswax jinx on their ears and immediately the painful explosions were so muffled they were almost nonexistent.
Mitsukuni blinked at him in dumbstruck shock, then lowered his hands and Harry did the same. Even with their noise softened to low thumps, explosions so close ate at Harry's nerves so he flew them up far above the city. And as soon as he did, his eyes widened with awe. He didn't know how Mitsukuni and the Hosts had managed it, but fireworks were being launched from every single building downtown and also most of the city. Tokyo was already stunning at night with how big it was and all its lights, and adding in all the colorful fireworks made it completely gorgeous.
"How did you do this?" He shouted at Mitsukuni, unable to contain his grin. "This is brilliant!"
Mitsukuni's head tilted in confusion and then Harry did his best to read his lips as he yelled back. "WHAT WAS THAT? I CAN'T HEAR YOU."
Harry snorted. Right, talking was useless as long as the jinx was on their ears. Mitsukuni's mouth started to open again, so Harry grabbed his hand and as expected Mitsukuni his lips froze as he stared down at their hands. What a dork. Mitsukuni could hold his hand and stare at it literally anytime, and he chose to do it now while there was a once in a lifetime firework show going off below them.
Harry nudged Mitsukuni with an unimpressed stare, who then self-consciously blushed and turned back to the show. Harry sighed then shifted on the rug, more comfortably leaning against Mitsukuni to steal his heat. It was fine, this was fine, they were just really high now and the wind was cold. He didn't want to be distracted by the chill when he could be watching the fireworks. And if his attention was split anyway between it and holding Mitsukuni's hand, he'd never admit it.
Jeez, Harry was never going to underestimate the Hosts and their plans again.
Once the last fireworks went off in a finale and faded away into the sea of smoke now drifting over the city, Harry canceled the jinx on their ears. But still neither of them talked, not even as faint cheers for the show echoed far below. This new silence was charged, with an edge that poked at his nerves, and Harry could only tolerate it for a few minutes before he took back control of the carpet and turned to Mitsukuni.
"Where should I take us now?"
Mitsukuni shrugged and smiled wistfully at him. "Back to your place, that's everything I had planned for our date. Once I drop you off there's a car waiting there to take me home."
"Oh, okay. Gotcha." Harry had no idea where they were, so he cast a quick Point-Me spell to figure out where to go before slowly flying in that direction.
"Hey, what's with that face?" Mitskuni whined and squeezed his hand. "Wasn't our first date good?"
"It was!" Harry reassured. "I don't know, it just feels weird. It's getting late and of course our date had to end eventually, but it feels like it shouldn't. Like we should just keep doing things together until we pass out or something."
Mitsukuni giggled - was that really that funny? - and squeezed his hand. "Ah, I understand now. Don't worry, I feel the same way."
Despite how slowly he flew, it only took them about ten minutes to get back to Harry's apartment. The whole way Mitsukuni held his hand, and they passed their last minutes together in a comfortable silence as the lights and buildings of Tokyo passed down below. No one saw Harry land the carpet behind his building, and as soon as they stepped off it Mitsukuni snapped his fingers and the carpet darted into his outstretched hand, already rolled up and shrunk. He tucked it into his pocket with a wink, and then took Harry's hand again and they walked up the stairs together.
The lights on all the apartments on his and Haruhi's floor were off, which made sense considering it was late, Haruhi was in Karuizawa, and Ranka was at work.
Mitsukuni hesitated at Harry's door with his back turned, and when he didn't move Harry rolled his eyes and stepped around him to open it. "Come inside and get your flower before you go."
"Oh right, of course!"
Harry walked in and flipped on the light, and Mitsukuni nervously bounced into the apartment after him. He still refused to let go of his hand even as Harry crossed the room and plucked Mitsukuni's pink rose out of its vase. Mitsukuni took it with a blush and a quick thanks, and after a long pause they walked back across the apartment and stopped at the open door. Mitsukuni didn't step outside, and he still didn't let go of his hand or said goodbye. Clearly neither of them wanted this night to end.
"Are you sure you don't want to just spend the night?" Harry teased. "It's not like you haven't before."
Mitsukuni snorted. "There's like, at least five people who'd try to kill me if I slept over tonight. As nice as that'd be, I'll have to see you tomorrow."
"Hmm, good point," Harry chuckled. As funny as it would be, he didn't want to deal with that drama either. "I guess this is goodnight then."
"Yeah, I guess so."
A blush appeared on Mitsukuni's cheeks, and as he fidgeted in place he nervously wet his lips. Harry wasn't an idiot, all those books he read had at least prepared him for this. Obviously Mitsukuni was working up the courage to kiss him goodnight. And Harry…
Harry was curious.
This is what should happen at the end of a date, right? A quick kiss goodnight? The one they shared in the library was more of a shock than anything, would it be different if he was expecting it? His own heart wasn't pounding, his palms weren't sweating, but he still found himself wetting his lips too. If Mitsukuni wanted to kiss him, Harry wouldn't stop it. Maybe this was the final thing he needed to decide if they could date for real.
Mitsukuni lightly tugged on Harry's hand and pulled him closer, his feet now planted in the doorway and his eyes burning with determination. In an instant their faces were only inches apart and their breath mixed together. Then Mitsukuni began to close that final gap between them, and at the very last moment Harry leaned in to meet him. Their lips hesitantly touched, Mitsukuni's warm and soft and firmly pressing into Harry's own, then their noses brushed together and through Mitsukuni's long eyelashes Harry saw that his eyes were closed. Holding his breath, Harry surrendered to the moment and closed his eyes too.
Mitsukuni wasn't in a rush for it to end, and neither was he, so they gradually sunk deeper into each other and their magic did the same. Harry fell, Mitsukuni's thick, golden magic enveloping him in an all-encompassing hug and at the same time Mitsukuni was settling into his own. It was one of the safest things he'd ever felt, and simultaneously one of the heaviest since almost all of Mitsukuni's magic was held within his own.
And he didn't think he ever wanted to let go.
Harry's heart thumped and his lungs burned for air, so he pulled away and with a small gasp Mitsukuni did as well. For a moment they just stared at each other, their brains struggling to readjust to reality, and then Harry awkwardly stepped away and gave Mitsukuni a thumbs-up.
"Nice. That was definitely better than last time."
Mitsukuni smiled and rolled his eyes. "I'd hope so, considering how sleep-deprived I was then. Did you like it?"
Harry blushed, tasting cherry on his lips. When had Mitsukuni even found the time to put on lip balm after they ate? "Um, yeah. It was nice. I'm surprised you didn't try while we were up on the carpet."
Mitsukuni's mouth gaped, then he groaned and palmed his forehead. "I'm such a moron, I can't believe I didn't kiss you when fireworks were going off all around us! That would've been perfect!"
"Don't worry about it," Harry grinned. "You'll have more chances. Probably."
"Hmm, only probably?" Mitsukuni giggled and coyly winked. "You don't think I've earned a second date?"
"I don't know, I'll have to sleep on it."
Harry's stomach did a flip at the thought of a second date, but he wasn't sure if that was from nervousness or something else. "Tonight really was great though, thanks for the date."
"You're welcome! I'm glad you had fun." Mitsukuni twirled his rose in his fingers and stepped backwards out the door, still smiling at Harry the whole time. "Alright, well I guess this is it then. Goodnight, Harii!"
Harry smiled back. "Yeah, goodnight!"
For a long, graceless moment he and Mitsukuni just stared at each other. Harry could close the door, he probably should, but he hesitated to end this moment and with it their date. It wasn't like Mitsukuni was walking away either, both of them were complicit in this, and Harry didn't want to be the first to give in but the longer they stood there the weirder this became.
He flicked his wrist and the door slowly swung closed, Mitsukuni disappearing from view, and then finally it clicked shut. Mituskuni's large magical aura lingered on the other side for several long seconds, and then slowly traveled back down the hallway to the car waiting in the street. That was it then. Harry's first date was finally over.
Harry went into the living room and flopped down on the couch. The silence in Harry's apartment echoed now that Mitsukuni was gone, and his lip still tingled and tasted good from their kiss. The tingling, at least, was unsurprising since it was their main point of contact when sharing their magic, but his heart hadn't stopped rapidly thumping since then either. This warm mushy feeling when he thought of Mitsukuni, this urge to hold his hand and make him smile and lean in for another kiss, this had to be what Mitsukuni felt for him, right? These had to be romantic feelings, right? Ranka said he'd know when they happened and he didn't know what else this could be.
Harry's heart clenched and he shoved his face deeper into the cushion. He just didn't know if these feelings were real.
Ever since he first learned about the prophecy between him and Voldemort after his first year at Hogwarts, Fate's hand had been a constant presence on his back. If he'd always been destined to fight Voldemort, how much free will did he have, if any? He hadn't had a choice whether or not to fight back then, it was that or die, and once he finished it he'd thought he'd been free. But Harry and Mitsukuni were also soulmates, they were apparently destined for each since they were born. So were these feelings really his? Or was it just fate or god or whoever else trying to push them together?
If he and Mitsukuni weren't soulmates, and everything else since they met was exactly the same, would Harry still feel this way about him?
Harry didn't know the answer, and he probably never would.
Well hello there, can't believe it's been a whole year since the last update! Oh how fast time flies…
Before I go further, I just want to say all the responses about Harry being explicitly ace were incredible to read and each one brought a huge smile to my face. I'm so glad doing that made all of you feel so seen, and I hope you'll keep finding more stories that do the same 3
Obviously my progress on this story has been slow, sorry about that, and this chapter had some particular challenges that I couldn't figure out for the longest time (which sent me to do other stuff instead lol). The main thing I had to figure out was structure, and more specifically the lack(?) of it.
I'm most comfortable with story structure that builds toward a climax, gradually escalating the tension until some pivotal moment happens. But I couldn't do that in this chapter. All the "build-up" to the date was done in the previous chapter, but also building toward a climax isn't how first dates work (or at least not the one I wanted to write). So I had a conundrum. If plot and tension (besides the ambient romantic tension) couldn't drive this chapter forward, that left only Harry and Mitsukuni's character interactions. Making those interesting enough for a full chapter was, of course, really hard.
What I finally decided was to completely abandon the "tension building" structure and write the characters the best I could, experiencing the Hosts' Super Spectacular First Date Operation Guaranteed To Make Harry Fall In Love (minus the helicopter). This had a finale of course, but I have no idea how well this lack of traditional pacing worked for keeping you all engaged. I hope you enjoyed the chapter and all the cute moments regardless if it didn't.
I can't promise that updates on this story will ever be a priority anymore. It's existed in my head for so long that other projects are a lot more exciting now, but hopefully I'll finish it someday! And with this chapter done I can move onto all the upcoming pain which is a lot easier to write :)