A/N: I've decided to try something a bit different. WARNING: Does contain a small amount of SLASH.

When Does the Gryffindor Bravery Kick In?


When did life become this complicated? I remember a time when I was sane. A time before I found myself attracted to my best friend. Back when I was the cute short chubby-cheeked Irish boy who wasn't attracted to anything. Unless you count Quidditch, but I doubt you do.

Back to what I was first talking about; in a normal situation it would be okay to fancy one of your best buds. I'm not in that normal situation. I haven't been in it for quite some time actually. A normal situation to most people would be something like Ron and Hermione. They're both best friends, and they adore each other. I honestly don't know what I would do if my best mate reciprocated these feelings.

I'm not saying that because my thoughts are purely sexual. That's not true in the least. I say that because I have no doubt in my mind that my best friend would never want to be anything but friends with me. I'm not normally such a pessimistic person; I'm just stating the obvious. Why would he want to go out with me, when he could have practically any girl at Hogwarts?

It's not as if it's a normal occurrence here at Hogwarts. The last public case of it was three years ago, in my third year. I don't really remember who the guy was that started getting the attention. I do remember that he was a Hufflepuff and wasn't well known until then. I also remember the ways he was mocked. Well, until Oliver Wood put a stop to it.

We all respect Oliver. He was a great Quidditch Captain, and is a bit famous for his minor league Quidditch around Scotland. I know; this story isn't about Oliver Wood. This is supposed to be about me. But before I get more into my story I have something else I need to mention about him, the reason why everyone stopped picking on that Hufflepuff.

As I said, this took place back in my third year. That would mean that both he and that guy were in their seventh year. I know; I'm beating around the bush. I just want to make sure that what I'm about to say sinks in. Anyway, some moron was saying inappropriate things to the Hufflepuff. I don't remember all of the words, but I do remember seeing the look on his face as people called him these things. I wanted to stick up for him, but I didn't think he'd appreciate it much. He didn't need some third year Gryffindor who he had never even seen before standing up for him. It would do more damage than good.

Luckily, I didn't need to stick up for him. As soon as his eyes started watering up, Oliver stood and spoke, the hurt was obvious in his voice, "I can't take this anymore."

"Oliver, don't. This is my battle." The Hufflepuff pleaded with him, but our Quidditch captain wouldn't take no for an answer.

"They have no right to treat you this way!" He growled and quickly walked over to the other seventh year.

"But I promised I wouldn't drag you in this." The Hufflepuff make eye contact with Oliver, trying to get him to just leave.

"I don't care what you promised. I said I can't take this anymore!" With that Oliver stormed over to the Slytherin table and singled out the slimy git who was the most responsible for the things said. "Do you have a problem with his relationship preference?" He screamed at him.

The Slytherin sneered, "As a matter of fact, I do."

"And why, pray tell, do you?" Oliver hissed and his eyes narrowed.

"Because I don't want him" The Slytherin looked repulsed and pointed at the Hufflepuff, "Looking at me and thinking filthy, disgusting, foul thoughts about me."

With that Oliver busted out laughing. "You think that he," he paused for a second to catch his breath, "Would find you attractive? No offense, but just because he's gay," Oliver spoke loudly as he walked back over to the guy he was speaking of, "Doesn't mean he wants to get into any guy's pants. It also doesn't mean he finds any of you attractive." He shouted, pointing to all of the different houses' tables. "As a matter of fact," Oliver smiled, "I happen to know that this guy only likes one other guy."

"Are you sure you want to do this?" The Hufflepuff looked at his friend a little worried.

Oliver just nodded and continued on. "So, none of you people have to worry about him in any way. Only one guy in this room has the right to worry about who he likes and doesn't like. That guy is me." Without so much as another word, Oliver turned around and kissed the Hufflepuff passionately on the lips. With that, he was out of the closet.

Everyone says that Gryffindors are known for their bravery. When does the Gryffindor bravery kick in? What Oliver did was insanely brave. Why can't I do something that ballsy? I only wish that I had half the courage that he has. Maybe then I'd be able to tell my best friend my feelings for him.

That makes me laugh a bit. How exactly would I explain to him how I feel? I can see it now:

"Hey Dean, I like you."

"You freak!"

And we never speak to each other again. As you can see, that doesn't really make me laugh. Actually, it hurts a bit to think about. So, you can see why I don't really want to tell him. I don't know how I would be able to live without being able to see his face. Watch him as he sleeps, staring at his beautiful face. How could I go without his laugh, his stupid jokes, the way he smiles, the way his eyebrows scrunch up when he's angry, the voice he uses when he's caught doing something he shouldn't. To live without those things is insanity. Just kill me now, please.

But on the other hand, there is the point ninety-nine percent chance he'll stay friends with me. I could just tell him that I'm not attracted to girls. He wouldn't care about that. I know, because we've talked about it many times. He jokes about going "gay" whenever he has a problem with girls. Luckily I doubt he's noticed the nervousness in my voice when I laugh with him about that topic. Either that or he ignores it.

Oh man. Sometimes I wake up telling myself, "Seamus, you're going to tell him." So I get out of bed and prepare myself. But then something always comes up that causes me to back out of it. The more I wait, the more scared I get. It goes on like that until I fall asleep kicking myself for doing nothing.

How did Oliver do it? How did he get the courage? I think about that a lot. For years I envied him. But then, just recently I realized someone already knew about his relationship preference. That Hufflepuff knew because they were together. I seriously have no idea who he told first, or if anyone except that Hufflepuff knew before he admitted it in front of everyone. For all I know he didn't tell anyone until his seventh year. This means I still have a year until I snap and fling myself on Dean in front of the school body.

I do have fantasies about me telling him my feelings for him; ones that he doesn't hate me and never talk to me ever again. In these I get up the courage to tell him. Afterwards I'm so proud of myself; I sometimes forget that it didn't really happen. One of my favorites was:

"Okay, I'm going to finally do it!"

"Do what?" The boy of my dreams asks as he walks up behind me.

"Um, Dean, I have something to tell you."

"Okay," He grins at me, "What is it?"

"First, promise you'll listen to everything I have to say."

"Okay." He grumbled sarcastically.

"I'm gay."

"Are you serious?" He jumped off the bed he was sitting on and his eyes would go wide.

"Dean you promised!"

"You don't understand," Dean grinned, "I am too!"

"No shit?"

"I didn't want to tell you, because I was worried you would freak." He smiled, happy to get it off his chest.

"Same with me. But, there's something else I have to tell you."

"I have something to tell you too, but you can go first."

"I fancy you Dean."

With that he smiled down at me, "I like you too Seamus."

I'll skip all the stuff that happened afterwards. I don't know who's reading this anyway. Don't want to scar the little children for life. Not like any of it would happen anyway. It's sad enough that I imagine the other part…a lot.

I don't know if I can wait that much longer. I think I realized that I fancied him back in second year. In first year I was just getting used to him. He's a pretty crazy person at first, does many things people would never expect. I'll just say he makes a pretty lasting impression. Anyway, I remember hearing the way the other guys talked about their crushes. I know it's not a normal thing. It was three in the morning, and well, we were all out of it. I don't think they even remember about it. I learned from them that they felt stupid for the tiny mess-ups they did around their crushes, got nervous just talking to them at times. I thought about it for a little while, trying to figure out who I could possibly like. But thinking about it made me realize something. That's how I felt when I was with Dean, and it scared the crap out of me. What twelve-year-old wants to admit they're gay?

It's hard for me to do nothing when we're alone together in our Dormitory. We'll be talking, and I'll lock eyes with him. My heart flutters so much when that happens, and I even think I bite my lip. I'm sure that it's a dead giveaway. But thankfully he never says anything about it, so I don't worry about it two percent of the time. The other ninety-eight percent I freak out when he catches me looking at him. I try to cover my face so he doesn't catch my blushing. Those aren't even the worst of it. Once, when he was talking in front of the Gryffindor Common room I was staring at him. That's not the bad part, almost everyone was. It's what happened next. Without even thinking my mind kept focusing on how his lips tasted, and I licked my lips. His eyes were focuses on me at that point, and he raised his eyebrow at me. I hope to God that he believes it was just me trying to screw with him, no pun intended.

In the back of my mind I believe that Dean knows my feelings. I think he knows that I like guys. Well, not guys plural, but him. I also feel that he wants it not to be true. I notice we never talk about my relationships when it's the two of us. We talk about school, our family, his girlfriends, Quidditch; sometimes about that weird muggle-sport he likes so much, football.

Going off topic really quick; how can someone enjoy watching a bunch of people kicking a round black and white ball on the ground more than Quidditch? But then, that's one of the reasons I'm so fascinated with him. He's not like other people I know. He's so different, just so uniquely Dean Thomas.

I adore being his best friend. That's another reason why I can't tell him. I don't want our friendship to end. He knows things about me that I'd die if he told anyone. I know things about him too. There's a lot more to him then meets the eye. Not just things he would die if I told anyone, but I know the only thing that makes him cry at night. Not every night, but only on the nights he feels alone. It's the nights that he remembers his father. Nobody really knows what happened to his dad. He was there one minute, and gone the next. We've had many discussions on him. Dean's told me about how he secretly hoped that his dad was a wizard, because then he wouldn't completely be a muggleborn. But there's hardly any trace of his dad anymore. Ms. Thomas gave up searching for him years ago.

That's another reason I love him. Dean is a strong person. I don't think I would be able to make it through if my dad just up and left my mum and me like that. He deals with so much crap in his life, and he just acts like it's nothing. But then there's the Dean, the one that cries some nights. He's the one that I'm not scared of showing affection to. I don't have a problem holding that Dean close and comforting him. But that Dean isn't a regular occurrence, and the other Dean doesn't like talking about what happened with his other self when he's in his strong mind once more.

I keep speaking about wishing I had the courage to do something about my feelings. I would like to mention that once I actually did. I went over to Dean and gave him a small kiss on the lips. I now suppose I should mention that he was dead asleep. That's how he sleeps. Once he's sleeping, he's going to be out for a while. So, I knew he wouldn't wake up if I did anything to him. Technically I could strip him naked and he wouldn't know about it. But I'd never do that too him. I didn't say I didn't want to do it to him. Obviously it's crossed my mind. I'm saying I respect him way too much to ever allow my hormones to take over.

Then there's the times he's in the vulnerable state. I could kiss him then, and I doubt he'd stop me. But again, that would just be me taking advantage of him when he's in a weak frame of mind. I have no right to do such a thing to him, especially since he's my best friend.

I wonder if he ever thinks about why I don't speak about girls. That's another reason why I believe that he knows. Either that, or he just thinks that I get shy and awkward thinking about them. Which isn't true, I don't really get anyway when thinking about girls. They make good friends. They're pretty smart. But none of them are anything like Dean. So that's as far as I've ever gotten with a girl, just friends. I'm not unattractive. I've had a few girls tell me that they had a crush on me. I'm just not into them.

"Seamus?" Dean's voice called out to me.

See, I even imagine his voice when I get like this. I'm insane. Maybe I should go check into St. Mungo's or something.

"Finnegan, don't make me come over there!"

Oh crap. It wasn't my imagination. I think too much. Soon I won't be able to tell fantasy with reality. "What is it my good chum?"

"Put this on." He spoke while handing me some sort of medallion.

"Why?" I had to ask. Make sure he wasn't trying to kill me or anything, although I did put it over my neck. Was it possibly for me to tell him 'no'?

"It's just for some experiment I'm doing." He smirked and stared at the thing around my neck.

I decided to look down at it too. It was glowing light blue. I didn't know what that meant, but it was apparently what he was looking for, because he gave me an evil grin and raised one of his eyebrows.

"You know what that means my good Seamus?" Dean gave me a strange look and pointed down and whatever he had me put around my neck.

I shook my head, starting to regret what I had just done. I attempted to take it off, but it wouldn't budge. "What is this thing?"

"Glad you asked." He stood straight, pretending as if he was about to say something important. "This medallion around you neck is something that I found in my attic during the summer. I read about it a bit on a piece of parchment. It was apparently my dad's."

"So does that mean he was a wizard?" My eyes widened as I waited for his response.

"I think so. There's a lot more stuff up there that my mom doesn't yet know about. I'm going to go through it this winter. I was thinking maybe you could help me." His eyes were lit up as he said those words to me.

"Sure." I smiled, "I'll have to ask my mum first though." How lucky for him. This was something he had been waiting for since he was ten. "Wait a minute," I had to yell at him, "Why is this thing around my neck?"

"I was testing it out on you." He answered nonchalantly, "And it's apparently working."

"Working? How is it working?" I knew it couldn't be something too bad, but sometimes Dean could do something really strange.

"Well," Again he gave me another one of those evil smirks, "Apparently it turns a light blue color if someone has a secret."

Shit! Okay, play it off. Act like there's nothing going on. "What kind of secret does it turn light blue for exactly?" If I'm lucky it'll just be something like me cheating on his charms test last week.

"It doesn't really say you have a secret. I just figured that out for myself." Dean smiled and me. "It turns into different shades for different reasons. There's pink, which just means you have a crush on someone. Then there's red, which means you are in love. But not you my dear Seamus," He beamed down at me, "It seams as if you're truly in love with someone."

"What?" I shrieked, fully aware of the dark red shade filling up my cheeks.

"I can't believe you would keep something like that from me. We're best friends!" He folded his arms across his chest.

"That's exactly why I haven't told you." I looked down at my feet, still trying to think of a way to get this thing off of me.

"I thought we told each other everything." His eyes were filled with hurt, "Or was that just me?"

"Dean. Please, I cannot tell you this!" I begged him, giving up on the necklace.

"But what about everything I told you? How can loving a girl be worse than that?" His eyes started to flame up.

"I don't love a girl." I spoke up without thinking.

"Don't lie to me Seamus. I'm not stupid. It says that you love someone!"

"It says I love someone, not some girl." Whoa, I must be braver that I thought.

"Oh." Is all he says in return.

I knew he would react this way. I knew I shouldn't have said that. Now I've lost my best friend. Stupid screwed up hormones. Why couldn't they be normal and like girls. "Can I go now?"

"Not yet." He looks back over to me, "Why didn't you ever tell me?"

"I wanted to stay friends."

"What? You think I'm ignorant enough to be some stupid homophobe?"

Well, that's good. He doesn't seem to mind my sexual preference. But still, I don't know how I can tell him the other thing. Without any warning he puts his arms around me, and my blush gets worse.

"Seamus. You're my best friend. We're together forever. I don't care how damn girly that sounds!"

"Thanks Dean." I smile and return his hug.

"So," He grins, obviously over it already. "Who's the lucky guy?"

"Are you making fun of me?" I glare up at him, hoping he'll drop it.

"Not even a little. Who's your boyfriend?" He questions me, waiting eagerly for a response.

"I don't have one." I answer him truthfully.

"Did you break up with him?"

"I've never had a boyfriend." I reply openly.

"But you do love someone, right?"

I could just say no. Then he'd drop it and leave me alone. I could. But I didn't want to. I had lied to him for too long. I didn't know if today would be the day I told him how I felt, but I would damn well try.

"Yes. I do."

"For how long?" He fidgeted, always acting like a child when he received new bits of information.

"Too long." I smiled at him. I was still aloud to be a smartass. There was no rule against it in these types of situations.

"Does he know?"

"I doubt it." My smiled faded a bit and I gently bit my lip. God, I just want to kiss him right now.

"Why don't you tell him?"

I raised my eyebrow at him, refusing to dignify that with a response.

"Okay, I suppose you're right about that. But still, what's the worse he could say?"

"No, I can't believe you like me. Eww, you're a guy!" I answered, no emotion showing in my voice.

"You're a pessimist." Dean stuck his tongue out at me.

Oh, what I could do with that tongue. Stop putting thoughts in my head!

"What if he likes you too?"

At that I let out a loud 'ha'. "First off, I doubt he likes guys. Second of all, yeah right."

"Give me a hint about who he is at least." He pleaded with me.

"I don't think I want to." I stated matter-of-factly.

"Come on. You cannot resist this face."

True, I can't. I just rolled my eyes and agreed. "Okay, I'll give you one hint."

"It has to be a good one though!"

"Fine! But only because you're cute." Did I just say that out loud? Maybe that should be the hint. Okay, no. Let me think. What would be a perfect hint? I got it! "He's a guy."

"Ha, ha, ha." He laughed sarcastically and glared at me. "That so does not count.

We are so stupid when we're alone together. "He's in our year."


"Technically I don't have to answer that, "I said smugly, "But I'm nice. Yes, he's in Gryffindor."

"So that's Neville, Ron or Harry." He spoke to himself, trying to figure it out.

"Wrong." I spoke without even thinking. Great, I can be such an idiot at times.

"But if it's not one of them then…"

I blushed again and covered my face with my hands.

"Are you fucking serious?" He questioned me. I detected a hint of laughter in his voice. I knew I shouldn't have told him.

I just nodded at him, trying not to cry.

"Seamus, look up at me."

I did as he asked; which was lucky for me because they say that if you look up then the tears won't come out.

"I don't think you really understood my outburst. I wasn't upset."

Yes, he was right. Now I am even more confused then I was before we had this conversation.

"Seamus, I love you too."

With that his lips came crashing down on mine, very unexpectedly. As I said earlier, he is very unpredictable.

Once we broke apart he smiled and put his arms around me. "I still can't believe you never told me."

"After that kiss, neither can I." I speak, still a little out of it from the last ten minutes. "I have just one thing to ask you."

"What's that?" Dean questions me, brushing a stray piece of hair out of my face.

"How the hell do I take this thing off of me?"

A/N: Review, tell me what you thought. No flames please. I do enjoy constructive criticism though.