Title: Harry Potter and the Werewolf Consultant
Prompt: PROMPT 79
Word Count/Art Medium: 14k
Fandom: Harry Potter
Contains (Highlight to view): *knotting*
Disclaimer: Characters herein belong to the lovely J. K. Rowling, her publishers and Time Warner. No profit is being made from this and it's purely for the purposes of fun.
Notes: So, prompter I hope you like it. I tried. I know you wanted humour but I'm not sure how much actually got in there. The story ran away from me a bit. Also, many thanks to my beta A for the continuous support. Everyone else, enjoy.
Summary: After Teddy transforms into a werewolf for the first time Harry and Andromeda don't know what to do. They consult an adult werewolf to help Teddy adjust and that werewolf turns out to be one Draco Malfoy.
written for instinctivelust's Beat the Heat Fest on LJ
When Teddy changes for the first time, it catches them all by surprise. He is four years old and it is the night of the first full moon since his birthday. Since the toddler had not changed into a werewolf all this time, they had not expected it to happen at all. Everyone thinks Teddy will grow up without his father's lycanthropy and they are more than happy about it, ecstatic really. So when the toddler begins to cry and to wail, Harry and the others think something else of it.
Harry is the closest so he goes to pick Teddy up and find out what is wrong. The child slaps at his hand with surprising strength and looks at him with eyes that Harry has never seen him adopt before. He tries again and Teddy bites his hand. Harry tells him to let go before he feels the teeth begin to grow and sink into his skin. Harry cries out and manages to pull Teddy off of him. Andromeda rushes to the child and Harry casts a Protego to prevent her from getting to him.
"Harry, what are you doing?" she yells at him, not noticing the way his palm his bleeding.
"Your hand..." Molly says quietly, but Harry is already floating Teddy up and carrying him to his room. "He's bitten him, Annie. Teddy's bitten him. He's-"
"No!" Andromeda screams at her. "Don't you dare say it, Molly! He's never- Harry, bring him back."
Teddy has already started showing outward signs of the change now and Harry floats him onto the bed. He quickly casts a few Impervious charms on the room and the door before he locks it and wards it. Andromeda is shoving him out of way and Teddy is wailing and Harry is still bleeding. The door will not budge and Harry stops Andromeda from breaking the wards. The wails turn into the growls and barks of a pup, the snapping and the snarling sound young but there never the less. Andromeda stops fighting him and simply stares at the door. Harry cannot bring himself to look at it right now. Not yet.
"He's still Teddy, Andromeda," Harry says softly.
"Why now though?" she asks, tears brimming in her eyes. "It's never happened before."
"Maybe he was too young before," he answers, as he sets his uninjured hand on her arm.
"He's still young!" she cries.
"Harry," Molly calls sternly. "We need to take care of that bite, now. You're losing colour."
"Oh Godric," Andromeda gasps, as she finally gives his hand a good look.
Molly does what she can with the wound while Andromeda floos Poppy. She dealt with Bill's injuries and so she would know how to stop the bleeding. Harry wonders if being bitten on the full moon counts if it happens before the werewolf changes.
"We don't know how to handle this, Andromeda," Harry says, glancing at the kitchen door and casting a Muffiliato. He does not want Teddy to hear them if he can avoid it. "We need to get help. Poppy said she knows a werewolf that would be willing to-"
"No," Andromeda says, rejecting the idea once more. "We can deal with this ourselves, Harry. We can."
"You heard what Poppy said. He's young. He'll need someone with him and neither of us can be there for him because we won't know what's going on," he says. "You'll risk infection and we don't even know if I'll change yet, and even if I do, this will be completely new to me. I won't have any idea what to do. We'll both be absolutely terrified and unless we remember to take the wolfsbane we'll likely attack one another. None of us want that to happen."
"I don't want some stranger of a werewolf near my grandson," Andromeda snaps, as she shoves the brisket into the oven. She closes it and just stands there with her eyes closed and her brows knit. "I can't believe this is happening. I can't."
"I know it's a lot to deal with after everything," he says, walking over to her. "But it's Teddy. We need to help him in any way that we can. Tonks and Remus would have expected us to."
"Merlin, I miss them, Harry," Andromeda whispers, her tension deflating as her shoulders sag.
"I know," he nods, as he hugs her. "I miss them too, but that won't help us or Teddy. We're bloody clueless, Andromeda. We need the help."
"All right," she sighs. "We'll call Poppy. The sooner, the better, so we can at least get to know the werewolf before the next full moon."
"I'll get the floo powder," he says.
Harry remembers that Poppy warned him not to be rash when he met the man that would help Teddy to cope with his lycanthropy but right now he cannot bring himself to look past who it is that is in front of him.
"No," he says, staring coldly at Draco Malfoy. Harry does not know what the man has been doing since the trials and he does not quite care. He does not want Malfoy anywhere near Teddy.
"It's been four years, Potter," Malfoy says, with a tolerance that seems unlike him. "Don't you think you're being a bit judgemental? Poppy wouldn't have asked for my help if she didn't trust me."
"I don't trust you," he says, as his eyes quickly rake over the man.
Malfoy has claw marks on his face and peeking out from his turtleneck. They are the only parts of the man that are not clothed. He is taller than Harry remembers but not by much, his hair is shorter, his face is less pointy but still sharp. Malfoy is still slender but his shoulders seem broader and from what Harry sees, he is more toned.
He really does not know what the man has been up to for the past four years and it does not sit well with him.
"I can wear a glamour for now if you'd like," the man says, and Harry blinks at him.
"What?" he asks.
"You're staring," Malfoy says, raising a brow at him. So he still does that then. "Some feel more comfortable when I wear a glamour to disguise the scars."
Harry blinks and realises that he was staring. He shakes his head and steps outside, closing the door behind him. "It's fine," he says. He reckons he is just shocked that Malfoy is a werewolf. The scars do not bother him, not after knowing Remus and Bill. "I'd prefer it if we spoke outside though."
Malfoy nods and Harry leads him to a bench on the front lawn.
"Poppy said the boy's name was Teddy, correct?" Malfoy asks.
"Let's talk about you first, Malfoy. We can get to Teddy after that," he says. He does not want to leave his godson in Malfoy's care, if even for twelve hours, without knowing more about him. Harry's memories of the man are already making him want to ask Poppy to recommend someone else.
Malfoy sighs and nods. "What do you want to know?" he asks.
"Let's start with when you got infected," Harry says. He does not expect Malfoy's slight flinch but he ignores it. He wants to know how much experience the man has with his own lycanthropy.
"You don't dither about, do you?" Malfoy asks, as he looks ahead.
"Not when it concerns Teddy's safety," he says.
Malfoy glances at him. "Nearly five years ago," he says.
"Five," Harry repeats in disbelief, because it does not make any sense to him. "You didn't have any scars on you during the war."
"I had a wand and glamours," Malfoy replies with a shrug. He seems more lax than Harry ever remembered him being.
"Was it Greyback?" he asks. Everything seems to go back to Greyback when it concerns lycanthropy in Harry's life.
"You don't need the details, Potter," Malfoys says, rubbing his forearm absently. "And I'm not keen reiterating the night it happened."
"What have you been doing the last four years?" he asks, deciding it would be cruel of him to force Malfoy to relive what he knows must be a difficult memory.
"I've been in Bulgaria," Malfoy says visibly relaxing. "They aren't as discriminating and I was able to pursue an education in potions. I'm able to brew my own wolfsbane potions when I need them and it's easier for me to get access to the ingredients with a legitimate degree. I could brew them for Teddy as well but I'm under the impression that you won't let him near anything I've brewed. Not that I'm surprised since I'm supposedly a dreadful human being."
"Malfoy, I don't know you," he says. "And what I do know doesn't help your case at all."
"I'm quite aware, Potter," Malfoy nods. "But I'm not the boy I used to be, and neither am I the one that needs the help. Plus, I hear that Teddy Lupin is my cousin. I don't have much family. I'm not about to steal him away or hurt him."
"Godric, I hadn't even considered that," Harry mumbles, suddenly having the image of Malfoy sneaking away with Teddy in the dead of night.
"At the first whisper of trouble, the authorities will be on me," Malfoy says, not that it helps. "I've got a tracking charm on me that the Ministry can activate if necessary. You can have it confirmed if you like. You can also inquire with the persons and families I've consulted with and helped to adjust to lycanthropy."
"I'd like to get into contact with them, yes," he says. "All of them."
"Your eagerness to find fault in me is insulting, Potter," Malfoy says. He does not look insulted though, he looks more like he had expected the difficulty and is pleased with himself for being right. "Poppy has access to the reports made by my clients. The Ministry's got me on quite the leash. I'm to be evaluated by all my clients."
As it turns out, the Ministry does have a tracking charm on Malfoy. They had apparently performed some sort of ritual on the high risk Death Eaters, and now they use it on all the high risk criminals. At least if something goes wrong, Harry will have a way to find the man. Most the reports on Malfoy were also surprisingly positive. There were a few clients who had issues with him and Harry reckons they were the ones that had Malfoy wear glamours and keep his Dark Mark hidden from sight. Knowing this and having Poppy reassure him that Malfoy was really the best person for the job makes introducing Teddy to him slightly easier.
"Teddy," Harry says, leading the boy to the lounge. "This is Mr. Malfoy. He's going to help you adjust to your cycles."
The boy takes one look at Malfoy and his eyes nearly pop out of his skull. Malfoy does not look particularly pleasant with his new hair and the scars, especially since he hardly smiles as much as Bill. Teddy hides behind Harry and clings to his leg.
"Say hello, Teddy," he says, resting a hand on the boys head. His hair is black and shaggy like Harry's at the moment.
"Hi," Teddy says, so quietly that Harry is not sure if Malfoy heard.
"Hullo, Teddy," Malfoy says, extending a hand. "Pleasure to meet you."
Teddy looks up at Harry then at the extended hand.
"It's fine," he says.
Cautiously, Teddy shakes the man's hand and then retreats behind Harry once more. Harry leads the way to the living area and sits on the couch with Teddy as Malfoy takes a chair.
"So, I hear you've turned into a werewolf for the first time, Teddy," Malfoy begins, crossing his legs and leaning back.
Teddy nods and then glances at the bandage on Harry's hand. "I bit Uncle Harry and made a mess of my room too," he says guiltily.
Malfoy blinks in surprise and looks at Harry.
"It was before he was fully transformed," he says.
"I'll have to keep an eye on you then," the man says thoughtfully, his eyes flickering over Harry before he turns his attention back on Teddy. "Don't worry. You didn't do anything wrong."
The boy nods shyly.
"It must have been frightening for you," Malfoy says.
"I didn't know what was happening," Teddy says, his hair turning into a dark grey.
"I was absolutely scared the first time it happened to me," Malfoy says, as if he was sharing some sort of secret. It's surprising to see the man acting kindly to someone.
"You don't look like you would be," Teddy says sceptically.
"I was," Malfoy says. "But don't tell anyone else I said that, all right? The only people beside us that can know are Harry and your Nan."
Harry is surprised at Malfoy for including him and Andromeda but he does not at all mind it. He wants Teddy to understand that he can tell Harry and Andromeda any and every thing. Malfoy is proving to be more professional than Harry has anticipated of him.
"Okay," Teddy nods.
Malfoy watches Teddy and Harry both when the next moon nears. Twice he has stopped Harry to breathe him in before pulling back and shaking his head. It seems that Harry is not likely to turn. He is craving more meat though and his sense of smell seems heightened. There are only three nights until the full moon and he is becoming nervous about what will happen and asking Malfoy all sorts of questions about his first moon. Teddy is nervous as well and he has crawled into Andromeda's bed twice since the week started. She has not said much about the lycanthropy but he can see that she is worried as well and having Malfoy visit regularly this past week did not seem to be helping her. Perhaps he should offer to take care of Teddy near the full moon since Malfoy would need to supply him with a dose of Wolfsbane potion every day during the week leading up to the full moon.
As it was, they were going to see if Harry would change this month before unnecessarily medicating him.
Harry is in the kitchen when Malfoy comes to Andromeda's today. They have already told Teddy that Malfoy is his cousin so the man greets Andromeda with a curt, "Aunt Andromeda" that Harry can hear. He steps into the living area and raises his hand in greeting before he goes back to the plate he had been preparing.
"Potter," Malfoy says, stepping into the doorway. "Where's Teddy?"
"In his room," he says, grabbing the tongs to turn the slab of beef on a different side. It is going to be far less cooked through than Andromeda likes. "The changes are making him feel like rubbish and he's cranky because of it."
"It's to be expected," Malfoy says, watching him.
"What?" Harry asks, transferring the beef to a large platter.
"Nothing, just watching," Malfoy shrugs. Harry thinks it would be less strange if the man tried to manage a smile once in a while, something more than the slight ones Teddy manages to pull out of him. "Are you going to follow me up to his room or will you call him down?"
"Ask Andromeda. I'm busy," he says, turning to cast slicing charms on the meat.
"The woman is terrified of me. I'm not asking her," Malfoy says. "She runs off like a frightened Hufflepuff when I'm here."
"She does not," he says, as he floats a few slices onto Teddy's plate and cuts them into cubes. The boy has only wanted meat lately. Harry himself is able to eat small amounts of staples and produce but it seems his palate prefers meat at the moment.
"I'm a walking reminder of the family that cut her off, as well as her grandson's lycanthropy," Malfoy says. "Aside from the fact that it's close enough to the full moon for me to smell the disgust, I'd say that was enough information to let you know she'd at least be uncomfortable with me in her house. She's probably worried about what sort of rot I'll teach him."
"She has good reason for that, what with the past that you've got," Harry says, before floating Teddy's plate to the table. "You were hardly a sweet child."
"Not if you didn't matter to me, no," Malfoy shrugs. "Although I can't honestly say I was sweet, to all the people that mattered."
"What?" he asks befuddled. He walks past Malfoy to call Teddy downstairs.
"You'll catch on eventually," Malfoy says, leaning on the doorframe. "And I see you've called him for me anyway. No need to interact with She-who-doesn't-want-to-be-spoken-to."
Harry shoots Malfoy a reprimanding look before Teddy comes down the stairs looking a bit grumpy.
"Cousin Draco, hullo," Teddy greets.
Malfoy nods and says, "Teddy."
"Are you having dinner with us?" Teddy asks. "Uncle Harry, is he having dinner with us?"
"Well, I uh..." Harry blinks and looks at Malfoy in the hopes that he declines but, being Malfoy, he does quite the opposite.
"Yes, I am," Malfoy says, nodding. "We'll be just a minute. Potter hasn't finished plating our food."
"Okay," Teddy nods, before heading to the table.
"What are you doing?" Harry hisses quietly, as he reluctantly summons another plate and glass.
"Getting you to serve me dinner," Malfoy drawls with a smug expression. "And I'm taking advantage of the opportunity to observe how your eating habits have changed. It's one thing to get reports from you and another to witness everything for myself. We know what to expect from Teddy but we still don't know what changes you'll go through so you require closer observation."
"Something tells me you just want the free meal," he mutters, as he gets himself and Malfoy something to eat.
"It's a plus," Malfoy says, leaning off of the door frame. "You only pay me enough to cover the ingredients for the Wolfsbane potion and a few days' groceries."
"You've got a job aside from this and those ingredients are expensive," he says, floating the plates and glasses up. "Fetch the jug of water, would you."
Malfoys floats the jug into the air and waits for Harry to pass with the food before he follows.
"After dinner, we need to discuss where you want Teddy to stay while he's changed," Malfoy says quietly.
Harry nods and they head to the table to have dinner. Andromeda does not enjoy watching Teddy practically eat raw meat so she does not join them. Later on, Malfoy will pour out Teddy's dose of potion. It tastes disgusting and has fumes coming off of it. Teddy complains about it each time.
Harry and Teddy are at Malfoy Manor of all places. Malfoy is the only one that uses the family home since Narcissa has moved to the continent and Lucius passed away from illness. They only use the east wing and most of the doors are closed. The Manor is clean though, since Malfoy was able to keep one of their house elves, or rather the elf decided to stay.
The full moon will be out tonight and having Teddy change at the house is not an option. It took some time for Malfoy to get Harry and Andromeda to agree to have Teddy change by the woods of the Manor but they prefer it to the Forbidden Forest, since it is on private property. Andromeda opted to stay at home because she doubts she can bear to watch.
Evening is nearing and the sun will set soon so Harry tries to get Teddy to take his potion but the boy is not having it. Teddy has been irritable and anxious all day, his hair and eyes changing colour at his every mood. He nearly knocks the goblet out of Harry's hand as he complains.
"Teddy, you've got to take it," he says. "It'll help with the pain and you'll be able to keep your senses. I know it tastes like rubbish but you need to-"
"No!" Teddy yells, turning away and holding his stuffed hippogriff in front of his mouth.
"Teddy, please," he tries, deciding to use a new tactic. "Malfoy spent a long time brewing this for you."
"I don't care," Teddy grumbles. "It tastes nasty."
Harry sighs and gets up. When he turns around, Malfoy is at the door holding a goblet of his own.
"Having some difficulty in here?" Malfoy asks.
He gives the man a flat look and Teddy all but ignores him.
"Your goblet's still full, Teddy," Malfoy says, walking into the room and silently coaxing Harry to give him the goblet and let him try. "I know it tastes putrid but that can't be helped. I still have my own goblet to drink. I despise the taste of it but I prefer it to the alternative, which you've already had to go through. The change won't be like the first time if you-"
"I don't want to turn into a werewolf either!" Teddy says, his voice cracking.
"Understandable. Neither do I," Malfoy nods, as he takes a seat beside the boy. "But I can't help it and I've learned to live with it. The most I can do is take the Wolfsbane potion to make things bearable, and so that I can retain clarity. That way I won't lose control and hurt someone."
"You mean like how I bit Uncle Harry," Teddy mumbles.
"Well, as far as attacks go, I'd say that was a minor one considering what could have happened," Malfoy says. "If Potter hadn't isolated you in time, you could have done a lot worse, and not just to him. Your Nan and Mrs. Weasley was there too, right?"
"You could have seriously hurt them. Werewolf injuries are difficult to heal. Your Nan probably won't want me to tell you this, but you could have killed one of them and if you didn't then you would have turned them into werewolves as well," Malfoy says. "And it's not at all a good feeling when you come to and realize what's happened. I nearly attacked my mother once. Felt terrible about it... still do."
"I don't want to hurt anyone!" Teddy exclaims with wide eyes.
"I know," Malfoy says, with one of those slight smiles that he has only ever given Teddy. "Which means you'll have to drink your potion. I still need to take mine so we can drink them together. Would you prefer that?"
"It's the same exact thing?" Teddy asks.
"Same exact thing," Malfoy nods, holding the goblet out.
"... Okay..." Teddy says, putting down his toy to take the goblet.
"On three," Malfoy says. "One, two, three."
Malfoy starts drinking first and Harry can see him grimace. Teddy takes a deep breath before starting his own and Harry marvels at the fact that Draco Malfoy, of all people, knows how to handle children, or Teddy at least.
Once they are done, Malfoy takes the goblet from Teddy. "That wasn't so bad," he says.
"It's still yucky," Teddy says, with his face a bit scrunched up.
"That's not going to change," Malfoy says, getting up. "Now, let's go outside."
By the time they are all outside, Teddy is yawning and the sun is setting. He is sleeping when they arrive on the outskirts of the woods. Harry carefully lays Teddy on the grass and beside him, Malfoy begins removing his robes.
"What are you doing?" he asks.
"I can only rip my clothes so many times before Reparo stops working on them," Malfoy says, still undressing.
He has more scars on him than Harry expects to see, one of which is a large bite mark on his right forearm, the same one he had clutched when Harry asked him if Greyback had changed him. Harry notices a thick black tattoo that goes around Malfoy's neck like a collar. The man had only worn turtle necks around him so he had never noticed it before. As far as he knew, it was where the Ministry's tracking charm branded him.
"I'll keep my pants on," Malfoy says. "I doubt you approve of unnecessary nudity around him. All though I'll have you remember that when the sun rises we will be unclothed. So don't have a fit and harass me about uncontrollable situations."
"Yeah," Harry says distractedly.
A scar on Malfoy's abdomen was holding his attention. It travelled at an angle and continued underneath his pants but there was no way for Harry to tell how far down it went. It looked as if it might have gone across to the man's bits and the thought of it made him cringe.
"Well, Potter, if you want to ogle me then perhaps I should take my pants off," Malfoy says, pulling Harry's attention away from the scar.
"Keep your pants on, Malfoy. I don't want to ogle you," he says, his eyes snapping up to the man's face. "Don't flatter yourself."
"Of course," Malfoy yawns. He stretches before sitting and lying back. The potion often caused werewolves to sleep through their transformation. "Perhaps if I had kept some glamours on you'd be more inclined."
Harry snorts and goes to lean on the nearest tree. "I doubt it," he mutters.
"I've been told I'm rather handsome when I don't look like myself," Malfoys says drowsily.
When night falls, Harry sees Teddy's and Malfoy's bodies ripple. The bones shift under their skin and their bodies and faces elongate. He finds that he cannot watch Teddy's transformation and closes his eyes until the popping of their bones cannot be heard.
He looks up to see a light grey werewolf, the size of an extra large breed of dog and a small werewolf smattered with a variety of browns and a bit of black and white fur. Malfoy is the first to stir, and when Teddy wakes, Harry is grateful for it because the young werewolf is terrified and has to be calmed down when Harry cannot do much for him.
Teddy was in Malfoy's care until sunrise and Harry was very anxious about it.
It is August and Malfoy has helped Teddy through two moons thus far and noticed no changes in Harry that indicate he is going to change into a werewolf. The blonde carries Teddy's potion over to Harry's flat to administer it and make sure that Teddy does not have any serious side effects. The potion is particularly difficult to brew and the slightest mistake can cause severe reactions.
Harry watches Teddy and wishes that Andromeda was able to be around him in the week leading up to the full moon but it hurts her too much to watch. She does not seem to notice the happier moments during that week, only the negative ones. Harry thinks it might not hurt her quite so much if Teddy's emotions were not on display with the way his hair and eyes change in accordance to his emotions. The boy cannot help it though.
"There a reason you looks so morose, Potter?" Malfoy asks. "You only see me for eight days per month, ten at most. I've heard I'm bad company but it can't be that terrible."
"Yes, Malfoy," Harry says sarcastically. "Your mere presence puts me in a sour mood."
"Good to know some things never change," Malfoy says. "Now, I'm going up to Teddy's room to check on him and see how bad the discomfort is."
"Does there have to be discomfort?" he asks, rising from his seat. Malfoy still is not allowed to spend time alone with Teddy outside of transformations.
"Yes," Malfoy nods, as he waits for Harry to head to the room before he moves. "I've still got it. Once a month every month, like Pansy on her period."
"I don't need to know about Parkinson's menstrual cycle," he mutters.
"And you, I've noticed that you tend to get a bit moody nearing the full moon, Potter," Malfoy says. "You're cranky, your appetite increases, you're sense of smell heightens, your palate leans towards a carnivorous diet and you can't seem to get any sleep when the full moon arrives. Once a month every month, like Pansy on her-"
"And?" he shrugs, stopping at Teddy's door.
"You've got more symptoms than I've seen in someone that's had an incident with an unchanged werewolf," Malfoy says. "It's like you're there but not quite. You appear to be right on the edge of transformation but you haven't quite gotten there yet, much like Teddy was when he bit you -or something akin to that. Trust you to be a puzzle, Potter."
"What are you on about, Malfoy?" he asks.
"I'm not quite sure yet but I suppose we'll find out eventually," Malfoy says, before knocking on Teddy's door. "I'm rather fond of puzzles after all."
It is November and Teddy is showing more symptoms than usual. Harry has called Malfoy and the blonde is asking Teddy a number of questions. Teddy grumbles and nods or shakes his head as he curls up in his bed, his magic occasionally cracking in the air. The boy is more snappish and prone to outbursts than previously and Harry is relieved that they stay at his flat during this week. Andromeda would not have been able to bear the sight of this and she had more breakables for the boy's accidental magic to have a go at.
"You've smuggled sugar into your potion, haven't you?" Malfoy asks, as he sits in a chair looking far too relaxed.
"No," Teddy says too quickly.
"I told you that would only nullify the effects of the potion, Teddy," Malfoy says calmly. "Nothing can be done about the taste."
"But it's so disgusting," Teddy whines, rolling over to look at them as his hair turns to a sickly green.
"I'll have to keep a better eye on you tomorrow," Malfoy sighs. "This full moon will be difficult. I suppose it'll teach you not to tamper with the potion though. There's nothing that can be done at this point. Get some rest. I'll bring you a Sleeping Draught so you aren't up all night."
"Is that all?" Harry asks, once they have left Teddy's room. "You aren't going to do anything?"
"There's nothing to be done. That's one of the few potions that'll help him right now," Malfoy says, shaking his head. "Is there anything here to eat?"
"To- Malfoy!" he snaps. "He's miserable. Do something."
"If I could, I would. But I can't," Malfoy says. "What part of 'he needs to take the potion every day for a week' do you not understand? He's tampered with it and nothing can be done about it. Another dose will only make him ill. He simply has to wait until this moon passes and then remember not to mess with it again."
"You aren't even going to try something?" he asks too loudly. Malfoy is right; Harry does get tetchy near the moon.
"I have tried, on multiple occasions, with myself," Malfoy says. "Nothing else works and it frankly isn't worth the trouble to experiment on him. It'll only make him feel worse. Look, Potter, I'm here and I'll be there with him to keep him under control and ensure that he doesn't hurt you or himself. You'll have to force me to stay awake during my transformation though."
"How the bloody hell can I do that?" he asks.
"However you want to," Malfoy shrugs. "Throw a few stinging hexes my way, pinch me, use smelling salts. I really don't care."
"Stinging hexes?" he asks in disbelief.
"I wasn't expecting you to latch onto that one," Malfoy says flatly. "I'd prefer you take the smelling salts route."
"Hexes are a tempting thought," he mutters.
"Not too tempting, I hope."
Harry does not use the stinging hexes during Malfoy's transformation. Instead he is holding Malfoy up and holding the smelling salts at his nostrils, forcing the man to reel back and gasp at the sharp scent. It does not last very long and Harry has to force the phial on Malfoy fairly often.
He is surprised the blonde has not attempted throwing him off of him as yet. He is also surprised at how hot Malfoy's skin is.
"It's not the first time I've had to do this," Malfoy informs him after Harry vocalises his thoughts, excluding the bit about the man's body heat. "Though I must say I appreciate your holding back on the stinging hexes... a few people resorted to it rather than the... ugh, smelling salts."
"That's just a tad barbaric, Malfoy," Harry says, bringing the phial to the man's nose once more. "You could have reported them you know. We've got a Ministry."
"An incompetent and similarly barbaric, doesn't give a shit- sorry," Malfoy adds, after Harry gives him a stern look for swearing. Teddy can still hear them despite the pain of his oncoming transformation. "-about me Ministry."
"Still," he says, glancing over at Teddy. The boy is pasty and wearing a constant grimace. He wants to comfort him but he needs to fend off Malfoy's drowsiness
"Former Death Eater and registered werewolf," Malfoy mutters, flinching away from the phial. "Tell me how much you think they care about someo0one- uggghn."
Night has fallen and Teddy wails as tremors rack his body. Malfoy shoves himself away from Harry, his bones popping and reshaping under his skin. Teddy rolls around on the ground and Harry rushes over to him only to have Malfoy half growl, half yell at him not to. Harry remembers what happened the first time he tried that tactic and hovers over the boy instead, muttering reassurances at him.
When Teddy's transformation is complete, he looks at Harry and growls at him as he stalks forward. Malfoy is still a bit groggy and so Harry backs away from his godson slowly. He knows he should probably get his wand out but he does not want to make any offensive movements. Teddy snarls and leaps for him. A surprisingly canine yip escapes him as he scrambles back but Malfoy is between them and Teddy's jaws lock onto the grey wolf instead of Harry. He stares at the two in shock while Malfoy growls and barks as he rolls around to throw Teddy off of him. Once the younger werewolf releases him, Malfoy is in front of Harry and is, well, protecting him. The grey beast stands firmly in place as Teddy paces. When the younger werewolf attacks, the other intercepts him and somehow manages to get him away from Harry without biting or scratching him. Malfoy is growling now and stalking forwards with his ears upright as he bares his teeth. Malfoy is exuding displeasure and dominance, even Harry can feel it, and within moments Teddy is crouching low to the ground and whimpering with his tail tucked between his legs and his ears flat against his head.
Malfoy's shoulder is bleeding down one foreleg but he does not seem to pay much attention to it as he keeps Teddy in check that night, Harry catching glimpses of them in between the trees.
When morning nears, Malfoy emerges from the woods carrying Teddy. He is holding Teddy in his jaws, in the same way wolves might pick up their young. It is still an unsettling sight despite knowing the boy is fine.
The sun begins to rise and Malfoy sets Teddy down before the two begin to ripple and change. Harry summons both their cloaks and lays them over the respective forms, wrapping Teddy's around his shoulders and hugging the trembling boy.
"Are you all right?" Harry asks.
Teddy nods and hugs him tightly, burrowing his face into Harry's shoulder.
"Malfoy, how's your-"
"I'm fine," the man interrupts. "I just need to get some rest and-"
"Did something happen to Cousin Draco?" Teddy asks, peering around Harry.
"You tried to attack Potter and I intervened," Malfoy answers, as he pulls the cloak more tightly around himself. The bleeding has mostly stopped so it barely seeps into the fabric. "I'll be fine though. It's nothing I can't handl-"
"I attacked Uncle Harry?!" Teddy exclaims, looking at Harry with wide eyes. He turns to Malfoy then. "And I... did I hurt you? I- I'm sorry! Cousin Draco, I didn't-"
"I'll be fine, Teddy," Malfoy says, more gently than Harry has ever heard. "It's not a critical injury. But next time don't go putting anything in your potion. Okay? Worse things could have happened."
Teddy nods about five times in rapid succession and mutters another apology as he wipes at his eyes. "I won't. Promise."
"Malfoy, if you need any help or-" Harry begins. He feels like he should at least do something.
"I'll be fine," Malfoy says, as he gets up to go back to the Manor. "You should both go home and rest."
"Floo us later and tell us how you're doing," he says. It is strange but he thinks he might actually be worried about Malfoy.
It is almost Christmas and Harry has to wonder at how he has found himself in front of the Manor. He knocks on the door and Teddy jumps up excitedly. This is how he wound up here. Teddy. Mostly.
The door opens and Malfoy's house elf, Elly, answers. "Master Draco is being busy brewing," she says, before she frowns at them. "It is not being the full moon tonight."
"We know," Teddy smiles.
"If he's busy, we can just owl him or something," Harry says. "It's nothing important."
"It is important," Teddy objects, looking at Harry sternly and tugging at his trousers.
"It not something we need his immediate attention for th-"
"Elly will be telling Master Draco that you are being here," the elf says, opening the door and stepping aside. "Please to be making yourselves welcome. Elly will be showing you to the drawing room to wait."
"Elly, you really don't have to-" he begins, but Teddy is already running inside and so he sighs and follows.
Elly closes the door behind them and apparates ahead of Teddy to show them to a light blue drawing room.
"Elly will be only a moment," the elf says, before disapparating.
"We could have just owled him, you know," Harry points out.
"But I want to do it in person. Cousin Draco gets to visit us all the time. I wanted to visit him," Teddy says, as he looks around at the room. There is a large painting of some woods by a lake that catch his attention.
"I should have flooed ahead or something," he mutters to himself. Who knows how delicate the potion Malfoy is brewing can be.
He reckons he also should have taken a nap after spending the day going through case reports for a specific Auror. Harry works in Internal Affairs and half the Ministry hates the department. They always make things difficult for them when they have someone to investigate.
"You needed to see me?" Malfoy asks, as he walks into the room. He is clad in a light green lab coat and removes it while he speaks.
"Need is a bit of a strong word," he says. This entire thing is Teddy's idea and Harry can see it becoming terribly awkward.
"Is something the matter?" Malfoy asks, taking a seat and laying the coat down beside him.
Elly pops in with some tea and biscuits before popping back out.
"Teddy was wondering-" he begins, but it is clearly too slow for the boy because he runs up to Malfoy with suddenly blonde hair.
"Do you want to come to Christmas dinner with us?" Teddy asks, and Malfoy's brows go up in shock. "It won't be on Christmas, because we have a big dinner that we usually go to-" Malfoy looks at Harry as if for confirmation to the question and he nods in reply. "-where all the Weasley's and us spend time and I get to play with the others. But Uncle Harry and Nan said you wouldn't want to go to that one and that you might have your own plans so I asked about the smaller dinner we usually have instead. We have that one on Christmas Eve and-"
"Teddy, I think he's gotten it by now," he says, before the boy can think of something else to give a long winded explanation for. "So, Malfoy, are you interested? Like Teddy said, it'd be on Christmas Eve."
"Are you inviting me as well, Potter?" Malfoy asks, and Harry gets the feeling that Malfoy is not just asking for the sake of teasing him. He cannot quite place the feeling it gives him though.
"Yes," Teddy answers, looking at Harry imploringly as he starts munching on a biscuit.
Harry sighs. "Yes," he says, because it is hard to say no to Teddy and because Malfoy is not half bad.
"You could have waited until I came by next week," Malfoy says. "Teddy begins this month's potions on the thirteenth."
"I'm also 'cranky' then," Harry says. "I reckon I should at least speak to you when my barely there werewolf genes aren't making me remind you of Parkinson on her period."
"I wouldn't say 'barely' there. There's... definitely something," Malfoy says. "I just can't put a finger on it quite yet."
"So, are you coming or not?" Teddy asks impatiently and hopefully.
"Teddy," Harry chides, and the boy at least has the decency to look apologetic.
"I didn't have any plans, so I don't see why not," Malfoy nods.
"Yes!" Teddy says, jumping on spot before surprising Harry and Malfoy both by giving the man a hug.
"How about you bring dessert, Malfoy?" Harry asks.
Malfoy raises a brow before speaking. "I've no idea what sort of things you like," he says.
Harry opens his mouth to reply but Teddy beat him to it.
"I like chocolate cake, Uncle Harry likes treacle tart and Nan likes poached pears for dessert," Teddy lists quickly. "But it's for Christmas so we won't have those. We're supposed to have Christmas pudding but Uncle Harry's the only one that actually likes Christmas pudding so we usually get cake and ice cream instead."
"That's rather helpful," Malfoy says, as he nods and his lips quirk in amusement.
"I need to use the loo," Teddy announces.
Elly pops up not a second later to show him to the loo and Malfoy looks at Harry then.
"Is my aunt all right with this arrangement?" the blonde asks.
"She's agreed to it," Harry answers, as his eyes linger on a bite mark on the man's neck. It seems Malfoy does not stick to his usual turtlenecks whilst at home alone. "She likes to see Teddy happy and you seem to help in doing that."
"And are you all right with the arrangement?" Malfoy asks. "Or are you doing much the same and humouring Teddy?"
"I don't mind," he says truthfully. "You're less of a prat than I had expected you to be, and you're kinder to him than I expected as well. Your kindness towards Teddy did a lot for how I think of you."
"And how is it that you think of me?" the man asks.
Harry shrugs and sips his tea as he contemplates the question. "I think you've got good intentions and you truthfully want to help, but you seem a bit self-punishing," he finally says.
"My lycanthropy is punishment enough," Malfoy says. "I doubt I'd add to it."
"It's not something you'd notice doing. I should know," he says. "I used to do it. And it doesn't have to be a punishment. You're living despite it."
"I'm living with it, not despite it," the man corrects him. "And it is a punishment. I was handed over to Fernir for my failures and I'm still suffering."
Harry is amazed at how level Malfoy keeps his gaze, his voice and his expression as he says that. A thought occurs to him then.
"Do you feel as if you deserve the punishment?" he asks.
"Not for the things I had been punished for, no," the man says. "But the events that resulted from them."
"You don't," he says. "For any of it. At least not anymore."
Teddy comes running into the room before Malfoy can say anything. The man seems to consider Harry for a moment and, Harry is not sure that he sees correctly but, he gives the slightest of smiles.
The full moon before Christmas is, thankfully, uneventful. Teddy dutifully takes his potions, though with a grimace and much dithering before he builds up his courage. He is restless when he wakes in his werewolf form and while Malfoy seems content to simply stroll around, the boy is leaping and chasing things, catching a fat mouse under his paws and barking at Harry and Draco proudly.
Harry has found that he can understand the variations in tone and the differences between howls so he is more or less able to understand them.
On Christmas Eve, Harry is helping Andromeda with the very late dinner when there is a knock on the door. He goes to answer it and finds Teddy waiting nearby to see if it is Malfoy.
It is. The blonde even has the cake and ice cream with him, chocolate cake at that.
Harry puts the dessert in the kitchen and casts freezing charms on the ice cream before going back to the food. Malfoy and Andromeda exchange polite greetings and before the man can finish asking if they need help, Teddy is pulling him away to look at the ornaments he has made for the tree.
When they float the food and drink to the table, Harry sees that Teddy has somehow managed to coax Malfoy into making an ornament. Before they take their seats, the boy pushes Malfoy over to the tree and points at it until he finds somewhere to place the newly made ornament. Malfoy looks down at Teddy in confused amazement before shaking his head and making his way to the table. Harry thinks that might be just as much of a Christmas present as the card the boy had made to tell him that he was on the list of 'favourite people' now.
Dinner goes far better than he expects it to and Andromeda even seems to soften up after watching her nephew and grandson interact. They even manage to get a few smiles out of Malfoy during dessert.
The man does not expect the gift that Harry hands him before he leaves but it was the least Harry could do after Malfoy both protected him from Teddy and refrained from harming the werewolf pup. It is a teal turtleneck sweater because Harry thinks Malfoy should wear at least some colour. He made sure to put that on the note. The man cannot walk around everyday looking as if he is brooding, and having a light green potions coat does not count as having something with colour.
He also thinks the colour will go well with the occasional flecks of blue in Malfoy's eyes.
"Here," Malfoy says, summoning a white box. "It's Christmas pudding, since we skipped on that and you happen to like it. Elly uses quite the recipe."
Harry blinks at the box, but more so at the fact that the man remembers what Teddy said to him when they visited the Manor than receiving a 'gift'. "I'll go so far as to call this thoughtful," he says, smiling and taking the box. "Thanks. Happy Christmas, Malfoy."
The blonde watches him for a moment before nodding.
For New Year's, Malfoy is on the continent visiting Narcissa and Teddy is slightly displeased that he will not be able to tell him Happy New Year. Andromeda surprises them all by suggesting that they send an owl. She even includes a letter for Narcissa, though Harry has no idea what is written in it.
Teddy's parchment is two paragraphs long, or it would be if he had used paragraphs, while Harry's is a short one liner.
He does not have much to write and he had considered making some sort of remark about dessert since Malfoy had given him the Christmas pudding, but Harry quickly realized that he does not know what sort of desserts Malfoy does or does not like.
It is the January moon and this is the last official visit Malfoy has with Teddy. He will still provide them with the Wolfsbane potion and check in on occasion but they are supposed to be used to routine by now and able to handle things if Malfoy is unavailable. When Teddy reaches puberty they will likely need help again, but they know where to find Malfoy and Harry suspects that they will be seeing him every now and then.
"Can you come next month too? Please?" Teddy asks, yawning after having run about all night. "It doesn't have to be for our cycles. It can be for a regular visit."
"One non-lycanthropic visit and I still come by, per the usual," Malfoy says, touching Teddy's head and ruffling his hair.
Harry realizes that Malfoy smiles more often than when he first began working with them. He also realizes that all of them are not for Teddy and he gets a few smiles of his own, quirks of the lip that seem to be playful smirks.
"I've got to take Teddy for a new pair of trainers," he says, before he knows he's about to say it. "You can come with us if you'd like. And it doesn't count as a visit. It's an outing."
"I can purchase a few potions ingredients at the same time," Malfoy muses, before deciding. "All right, so long as we have dinner after. I'll be starved."
"Of course that's it," Harry says quietly, not quite sure why he expects Malfoy to want to go shopping with them. "You'll be hungry."
"I will be," the blonde says, glancing at Harry. "The question is what for."
Harry finds himself blushing for some reason and wishes that Teddy was not sleeping now so he could break the atmosphere with some sort of comment.
"What for then?" he asks quietly, swallowing once the words are out his mouth.
"You should go home, Potter," Malfoy says. "We're all tired and you need to get Teddy to bed."
When Malfoy follows them to Diagon Alley Harry notes, with more pleasure than is necessary, that the blonde is wearing the teal sweater. The day goes as well as a shopping trip can, even if they disagree on trainer styles for Teddy. That unnecessary squabble ends when Teddy reminds them that they are not the ones wearing the shoes, he is.
They take Teddy to the park after that and Harry does not know what happens, since he is tucking their shrunken purchases away, but he hears a laugh that tickles at his ears and looks up to see Malfoy covered in snow with a proper, breath-taking smile on his face.
Harry tells himself that Malfoy has nothing to do with the usually faceless man in his fantasies now having blonde hair and the smile from the park. He tells himself that it has just been a while since he has had any sort of relationship and that it is simply getting to him.
Something is different this time. Harry can feel it. He is not cranky, not really, and he is not snappish. He is... honestly he is not sure what the difference is but it is there.
"I can tell," Malfoy nods, sniffing briefly at the air around Harry.
Harry finds that he is also noticing Malfoy, is more aware of his presence.
They are not sure what exactly is happening but it is too close to the full moon for anything to be done about it if something is actually happening. For a second Harry thinks that Malfoy has some clue as to what is causing the change but the man says nothing.
"So, what do you think we should do when the full moon comes around?" Harry asks, as he sits beside Malfoy.
"We'll have to figure that out when the time comes, Potter" Malfoy says, taking a quick sniff and then frowning. Harry almost wants to hear his first name come from the man's mouth. "I'll ask around to see if anyone knows what's going on. It's curious that this would happen now."
"You mean after so long?" he asks.
Malfoy shakes his head and knits his brows further.
Harry does not change on the February moon but he does want to join Draco and Teddy in the woods, badly. When they finally emerge, Harry lingers and runs a hand through Draco's fur after he puts the cloak around him and then he goes to Teddy. He wonders why he has never noticed how soft Draco's fur is before now or how much he appreciated the werewolf's scent.
"You smelled different tonight," Teddy mumbles, as he rubs his eyes tiredly.
"Did I?" he asks, lifting Teddy up. The boys nods and yawns widely.
"Potter-" Draco begins, but Harry cuts him off without thinking.
"Harry," he says. "Call me, Harry."
"All of a sudden?" Draco asks warily.
"Well, I've been wanting you to say it for a few days now and we've been around each other every week for almost a year," he points out. "That doesn't seem sudden to me, Draco."
They are both a bit surprised at Harry's use of the man's given name, though Draco more so than Harry.
"All right... Harry," the blonde says. "Going back to what I was saying, you did smell different last night. I'm not entirely sure what this means just yet but it narrows things down a great deal. I'll looking into it and get back to you as soon as I have something solid, all right?"
"Okay," he nods. "Do I need to worry?"
"Perhaps, I'm not sure yet. It's nothing outlandishly dangerous though," Draco says. "Can you visit Bill Weasley and then have him contact me. Don't owl him, don't floo call him. Visit him."
"Why?" he asks worriedly.
"I'm just... confirming something," Draco says reassuringly. "Visit him, Potter."
"Harry," he corrects.
"Harry," Draco nods.
The frown and then the surprise that Bill adopts when he sees Harry is making him curious about what the bloody hell is going on. The long-haired Weasley walks up to him and takes a few sniffs. For some reason Harry instinctively steps back. He does not want Bill to sniff him.
"I'm sorry, what did Malfoy say to you again?" Bill asks, after watching Harry with a calculating gaze. Harry thinks Bill noticed the rejection and was momentarily confused by it. He was too, actually.
"Draco just told me to visit you, tell you to see him, or speak to him," Harry answers. "Something like that. He was pretty specific about me seeing you in person though. Says he wants to confirm something."
"Draco?" Bill asks.
"That's his name, isn't it?" Harry quips. He does not know why it bothers him that Bill finds it odd he should say it.
"I reckon it is," Bill nods. "I'd sniff you again but you don't want me to, do you?"
"Is it that obvious?" he asks.
"It's fine. Understandable, I think," Bill murmurs. "I wonder if I should feel offended."
"Look, it's not as if I've anything against y-"
"That isn't what I mean, Harry," Bill smiles, waving a hand dismissively. "I'll talk to Malfoy- if Ron ever heard me say that. I reckon he'll be able to explain things to you soon, though this is an odd case."
"What do you mean?" he asks. "Is something wrong with me?"
"No, nothing at all," Bill laughs. "Don't worry. Just avoid going near any werewolf packs. I don't expect you need the warning though, Harry. You've no reason to seek them out."
It is three days after meeting with Bill, and four after the full moon that Harry sees Draco. He is not sure why he has counted it but he has and it is important that he has, because he missed the blonde. Harry moves to walk over to Draco but the man raises a hand to halt him.
"Let's just sit down, P- Harry," Draco says, as he gestures at Harry's couch and chairs.
"All right?" he asks, as they sit. "What did you find out?"
"You recall our earlier conversations about the different stages Teddy would go through as a werewolf, yes?" Draco asks, pulling out a folder and leafing through the sheets of parchment. "And do you recall what I said we would find out when he came of age?"
"I don't see what that would have to do with me," he says, unconsciously shifting closer to Draco. Why had Harry never noticed how slender the blonde's fingers were, or how strong his shoulders looked?
"Since you seemed to linger on the edge of full infection, I wasn't sure how this aspect would affect you, but you hadn't shown any signs of wanting to challenge or acknowledge my dominance over yours so I hadn't had a reason to think anything would happen," Draco begins explaining, before handing Harry a few sheets.
"Can you just tell me?" he asks, not bothering to look at the parchment. He is slightly disappointed that Draco held them in a way that prevented their fingers from brushing.
"I'm an Alpha, Harry; I told you that when I explained everything regarding Teddy. He's a child so it didn't much matter and it's easier for him to acknowledge that he should listen to me when we're changed," Draco says. "But you, you're an adult and you're exhibiting characteristics of a Beta at the moment, and next month is generally when werewolf Betas go into heat which means that this month they're all going through proestrus."
"What are you even saying right now?" he asks, finally looking at the parchment in his hand. It was about a woman that had been partly infected and had not turned into a werewolf except during the full moon of mating season. "Wait, so the reason- I'm a- I've been sitting here missing you, ogling you and wanting to touch you because I'm a Beta? Is that what you sent me to Bill to confirm? Why?"
"Yes," Draco nods, shifting away from Harry. He seems to have gone closer to the man without realizing. "Bill's a confirmed Alpha among people that don't have enough of the werewolf gene in them to change at the moon and he could tell that there was something different about you. I had my own suspicions but I wanted to be sure first. I spend so much time near you and Teddy during the full moon that I'm sensitive to some of the slightest changes in your scent and I didn't want to jump to any conclusions just because I'm hyperaware."
"So what does this mean?" he asks. His heart is pounding as he imagines having to go through the change and also the yearning he has heard Betas experience. He reckons he fancies Draco, yes, but he does not think he would have gone so far as to shag him before this began. "What exactly is... proestrus going to entail? I reckon I know what oestrus is."
"Essentially, your body is preparing for reproduction. You'll-"
"What?" he asks flatly, because Draco cannot be serious.
"Your womb and your ovaries are forming and-"
"I'm dreaming. I have to be," he says. Draco just said 'womb' to him, as if he was going to have one.
"It's a terribly awkward conversation, yes, but it's my job to-"
"You aren't on duty until Teddy reaches puberty-"
"Harry, do you honestly think I still care about whether or not I'm on hire?" Draco asks. "Look, everything you need to know is outlined on those sheets of parchment. They'll tell you what changes you're going through, physical and behavioural, and what to expect in oestrus as well. If you have any questions or concerns you can owl or floo call m-"
"Why can't I see you?" he asks. He wants to see Draco. He wants to see Draco regardless of proestrus.
"Harry, you're only exposed to two Alpha individuals, Bill and myself," Draco begins. "You've disregarded him as a mate and you've apparently identified me as the Alpha you want to mate with."
"Okay, and?" he asks. He does not understand why this is an issue.
Draco sighs and rolls his eyes. "You're going to be excreting pheromones that attract me and trigger protective and possessive behaviours towards you. You'll lavish me with attention and try to keep it, touching me, nuzzling me, your general affectionate behaviour with a bit of wolf added to the mix. You are likewise going to be possessive of me, which to be honest, isn't an issue for me because I've done this before-"
"You've what?" he asks. Harry feels unexpectedly disappointed and upset. "You- I don't know what words I'm looking for."
"Formed a pair bond," Draco supplies. "Yes, I have. Thrice. We were careful and the Betas took a contraceptive potion before they entered heat. Pair bonds are maintained during the reproductive cycle, and if there's a pregnancy then that as well. Otherwise they're usually terminated and I do not want to do that again. You're going to drive me mental with your scent and I'm going be there at your beck and call until your hormones die down because my instincts want me to protect and provide for you."
"You just said that didn't bother-"
"I said your possessiveness won't bother me. Mine does, because when you've completed the cycle you won't have that anymore," Draco says. Harry does not understand how the man is able to be saying all of this so calmly and evenly. "Everything will return to the way it was and your want for me will perish with the hormones. It will have been a casual, biological relationship with an expiration date- an expiration date that I don't adhere to and will have to adapt to. I'd rather not go through the trouble. You don't have to mate with someone. You'll simply be unreasonably aroused during heat and that's that."
"Draco, I wouldn't just leave after-"
"I've heard that before," Draco says, suddenly looking tired. "I don't want to ruin two of the few relationships in my life by falling for it again because if this happens, being around you after will be too... And if I intend to keep contact with Teddy, I'll have to see you. I won't put myself through that again, not with you."
"What do you mean, not with me?" he asks, inching closer without quite meaning to. "What makes me so different?"
"I thought you'd know the answer to that," Draco says, standing. "It seemed as if you did these last few months."
A week after Draco's visit, Harry finds himself knocking on the doors of the Manor. He reckons he knows why Draco does not want to form a pair bond with him and he wants to make it clear that he does, in fact, know why the blonde wants to avoid getting attached to him via the reproductive cycle but that Harry had feelings for him before that, slight as they are... or were, because they are not slight at the moment. At the moment, Harry wants to spend as much time with Draco as possible and become more familiar with him in as many ways as possible.
Except no one answers the door. Not even Elly.
"Draco! Stop being a prat and open the door!" he yells. The Manor is ridiculously large though and it is likely he is not heard. "Please!"
Harry waits for a few more minutes before he is knocking again. "I'll stay out here all night if I have to!"
He sighs and sits on the door step, knocking every few minutes even after the sun has finally set. He is serious about staying there all night. Draco is being silly and stubborn and Harry wants to kiss some sense into him or show him how long it took to find a sweater he thought Draco may like despite it not being dark or part of the greyscale.
With a yelp, Harry starts into wakefulness and manages not to fall backwards. He was leaning on the door and falling asleep because Draco is particularly stubborn. He turns and looks up to find the blonde giving him a stern look.
"You are a complete idiot," are the first words Draco says to him before Harry is taken by the arm and hauled inside.
Draco is saying something about the cold and how Harry's likely to get himself ill. He is sure the man is swearing at him left, right and centre as he is pulled along but all he is able to think about is holding Draco's arm. Maybe he can pass it off as needing something to balance himself on so that Draco does not let him go and have Elly help him.
"Please don't avoid me," he says, before he is able to stop himself. He decides to keep going since he has already begun. "I do understand. And I think that you know that even without the reproductive cycle, we would have gotten closer. You came to Christmas dinner with us-"
"I recall that being Teddy's idea," Draco says, seating Harry in a chair and tossing him a blanket that Elly must have set down for them.
"Doesn't mean I didn't want you there," he says, pulling the blanket tightly around him. Harry did not realize he was cold before. "And I bought you that sweater that would complement the flecks of blue I sometimes see in your eyes. I invited you shopping with us! That wasn't Teddy's idea."
Draco handed Harry a mug of hot tea and went to sit in a chair opposite Harry. "Teddy was stressing how much he wanted to keep on seeing me," the blonde says. "It was for his benefit."
"You came to the park with us and it was the first time I had ever seen you smile, really smile," he says. "I- you're really something special when you let yourself relax."
"Flattery doesn't work with me," Draco says. Harry almost believes that last statement did not help but Draco glances away from him instead of pinning him with the usual gaze.
"I wanted to see more," he says, as he sets down his untouched tea. "I still want to, clearly. I'm not just here because of hormones, Draco. Part of me was already- ...My interest in you isn't something sudden. It's been building and growing and I think that now it's just... amplified."
"As I said, flattery doesn't-"
"I'm trying to tell you that I've fantasies of you without saying it outright," he blurts out.
"Excuse me?" Draco asks, frowning.
"You don't have to worry about me forgetting about you when this has passed because I'm already half way there," Harry admits, all though half might be a bit more than is true but that is not the point. The point is that- "I already cared about you. It's just more biological now."
"Trust you to be either too subtle or too blunt," Draco says, shifting in his seat. "What do I look like?"
"In these supposed fantasies, what do I look like?" Draco asks.
"You," he says, not quite understanding. "Now, you. You've got your scars, the brand of the tracking charm, the Dark Mark, that bite on your other arm that looked as if Greyback nearly tore it to shreds. All of it. Everything."
"And what are these fantasies about?" Draco asks. Harry wonders if he realizes they are both leaning forwards now.
"... Your smile, your eyes," he says, as he carefully brings his hand up and gently touches the other man's brow. "I- sometimes that's all it is and sometimes I think about your hands and your fingers. Sometimes you're laughing with me other times you're... touching me or um, I'm touching you. And ever since proestrus it's been more... family based."
"The rest of it was before proestrus...?" Draco asks, pulling Harry's hand from his face but still keeping hold of it. Harry nods and Draco watches him carefully before letting out a short sigh. "Don't make me regret giving you a chance."
"I won't," Harry smiles.
When Harry is at dinner at the Burrow, Bill is the first to approach him. He smiles at Harry and says something about how he did not expect to see him without Draco hovering around him. The blonde was at the Manor brewing Wolfsbane potions for himself, Harry and Teddy and he could not leave the cauldron unattended, after which he will also brew the contraceptive potion Harry is supposed to take the day before he begins the Wolfsbane.
He notices that Bill keeps a noticeable distance between them the entire night, and makes it impossible for anyone except the women to go near him.
"Why do you keep doing that?" Harry finally asks when they are relatively alone.
"Because I can smell Malfoy all over you. But they can't smell it so they aren't being warned to keep away," Bill says. "It's upsetting to smell another Alpha on your mate so close to mating season, or even just another man really."
"You can smell him on me..." Harry says. He is strangely pleased to hear that.
They are all at Harry's flat and he thinks that Teddy can smell that this month will be different. The boy tries to avoid being too close to Harry and Draco when they are together and runs off to play in his room.
When Harry drinks the Wolfsbane potion for the first time, he nearly spits it back up because it is absolutely dreadful. He can understand why Teddy tried to make it taste a bit better. Draco lies on the couch with Harry afterwards and watches him carefully to see if he has any adverse side effects. They assume Harry will change because of his strong reaction to mating season but it is not a given.
Nothing happens within the first two hours and Draco feels relaxed enough to stop watching him like a hawk and allow them to pet and kiss one another the way Harry wants to. He traces the lines of the blonde's face, the scars as well and then he kisses each of them. It is comfortable to be with Draco and he is sure that if they had pups, his mate would do everything in his power to protect them.
Harry asks Draco to let them stay with him at the Manor for the rest of the week because he wants to be near him. Draco nods and kisses his cheek.
"I'll even spoil you and bring you your food myself while you're there," Draco says. "Bathe you if you'd like. You'll be insufferable by the end of it."
The change is less painful than Harry expects, but he reckons being asleep helped quite a bit. When he wakes, Draco in beside him and his first instinct is to nuzzle the grey werewolf's neck. Harry wants to run into the woods for Draco to chase after him but first he looks for Teddy. The young werewolf looks tamer tonight. Harry follows Teddy into the woods and Draco follows them, flanking the pup. It takes more out of Harry than it should to wait as he burrows a hole deep enough for Teddy to stay in and wait for them to collect him in the morning. Draco prowls nearby and keeps an eye out for enemies even though they both know the creatures in these woods are more in danger of Teddy than he is of them.
Once the pup is safely in the den, Harry walks over to Draco, paws at him, rubs against him and bumps their noses together. Heat is quickly pooling inside of him and he curls his tail to the side as he turns with his back to his mate, exposing his arse for Draco to sniff and later on fuck. Harry knows he is oozing pheromones and cants his hips to expose himself even more.
He glances back at Draco and then he dashes off as fast as he can.
Harry is hot and he is aching with need. Draco is hot on his heels and it will not be long before he is caught. He makes a sharp turn and catches a glimpse of his mate following him with ease. Harry is burning up and he is wet between his legs. Draco is coming up beside him and before Harry can move away, his mate leaps at him with a low growl and they tumble to the ground.
When Harry gets up, Draco licks his face and rubs their bodies together before moving behind him. He is practically shaking with anticipation, his arse wet and his cock swelling. Draco mounts him and he whines in anticipation. His mate bucks his hips and Harry shivers when he is penetrated. Draco bucks wildly behind him and inside of him and it is brutal, animalistic, raw. He can feel his mate's cock swelling and filling him in the way he needs to be filled. Draco's knot swells as Harry's muscles constrict, tying them together and stimulating them both. He lets out a pleased growl as Draco bites down on him possessively. All he wants now is for-
There it is. Draco pulses and Harry feels the hot cum pumping into him and it is more than he expects. He whines in pleasure.
His mate swings one leg over his back and they stand arse to arse as Harry clamps continuously around the base of the knot. They are both panting and if Harry could moan he would. He settles for more growling. He thinks the best part of mating in this form is just having that need to be filled finally fulfilled, having Draco seated more than snug inside of him.
It is a long while before they are able to separate and when they do, Draco is playful and flirty as they lay together. It is not long before they are tied to one another yet again and Harry cannot wait until they get to spend the rest of his heat mating in human form so that he can touch and look and speak to Draco while they fuck.
When dawn nears, they retrieve Teddy and he sniffs at them curiously before shrinking away. He can tell they want be alone but it cannot be helped. They revert to their human forms and Elly covers them each in the same way that Harry usually does so that they are not completely starkers. The elf takes Teddy to get changed into his clothes so that she can apparate him home to Andromeda. Harry however stays at the Manor.
Draco takes the cloak from him and drops his own, not needing it since they are alone. He kisses Harry once and lifts him into his arms before apparating them to the bedroom.
"Oh Godric," he breathes.
The feel of skin on skin makes Harry gasp as he burns wherever Draco touches him. He wants the blonde to fuck him again and he wants it now. He is itching to have Draco inside of him, to have Draco kissing him, to have Draco bite him and stake a claim.
"Fuck me," he pleads.
He does not have to worry about lube because he's probably dripping wet, not that it matters anyway since Draco has more than taken care of that, seeing as he is still slick from their mating. Harry is on the floor spreading his knees before he knows what he's doing and in an instant Draco is behind him and pressing inside of him. He arches and presses back with a moan before Draco roots himself in Harry. His mate's body curves around him possessively, head buried in his neck as teeth and tongue drag along his skin.
Harry can feel the cum leaking out of his arse as Draco pounds into him and he really does not care that he's probably messing the floor, or about the way it's flowing down his thighs and his balls. All he cares about is satisfying his need and pulling Draco down to kiss him as he twists to meet the blonde, fucking all the while and being overwhelmed with sensation.
His hips jerk and he moans as Draco's knot forms inside of him and holds him firmly in place. Again, his hole contracts repeatedly and milks the blonde, coaxing him to completion as it holds him in place. Nothing leaks out of Harry now that there is no space for Draco's warmth to slip through. He grinds his hips against Draco and cries out as he orgasms and messes the floor some more, trembling from pleasure and exhaustion. Draco spills into him as he rocks his hips as best he can, teasing his prostate and driving his mate along. They both collapse to the floor and fall asleep tied together.
Oestrus last 7 days and Harry is only into Day 3. He is sitting in Draco's lap eating dinner as best he can in his current position. They are facing one another and Elly has set their plates beside them so they can reach it easily. They meant to finish eating earlier but Harry's libido acted up and Draco could not help himself once he had caught the scent, not that Harry would have stopped him. So instead of eating his food, Harry had straddled Draco and rode them both to completion. The knot is what was providing them time to feed themselves in the midst of Harry's raging hormones and resulting pheromones.
Draco groans and drops his fork into the plate to hold on to Harry's hips. "How am I to eat if you keep grinding on me like that?" he asks, giving Harry a sorry excuse for an annoyed glare.
"I can't help it," Harry says, while he rolls his hips forwards. Draco just feels so fucking wonderful inside of him, with his knot pressing against Harry's prostate so that every little movement sent pleasure through him. "How do you expect me to stay still with your cock up my arse?"
"I suppose you have a point," Draco says. "My cock is outstanding."
"You wish," he smiles.
"If it isn't, then why are you sitting on it?" Draco asks, running his hands up Harry's flank.
"Because I'm trapped by the knot you've got during mating season," he says. He clenches his arse and bucks his hips forwards. "And because it's still deliciously hard. I wouldn't want to leave you aching like that- I wouldn't! I really wish you'd stop looking at me as if I'm actually going to run off 4 days from now. I won't."
"Won't you?" Draco asks.
Harry knows they should probably stop touching each other so he can make this conversation as serious as it needs to be, but it is so bloody difficult to do that when his cock is aching between them and all he wants to do is rut in Draco's lap.
"I'm not about to shag you for a week and then disappear," he says, kissing his mate and rolling his hips. "Who'll feed me breakfast in the mornings then? You've pampered me too much for me to let you go."
"I won't be spoiling you this much when mating season is over," Draco informs him between kisses, snaking a hand between them.
"Fuck," he whispers into Draco's mouth, as fingers wrap firmly around him and a thumb teases at his leaking slit. "I think you'll have spoiled me enough by then... Stop teasing me... It'll be my turn to pamper you when I'm not absolutely aching to have you breed me."
"I don't need pampering, Harry," Draco says, still stroking Harry's cock in all the right ways as he rocks atop him.
"I think you do," he counters, letting his head fall to Draco's shoulders. For a while all he can do is rock his hips and whimper into the man's neck. "You'd look more pleas-ah-nt."
"I look pleasant enough," Draco says, his tongue gliding hot on Harry's neck and his teeth teasing at the skin. He gives Harry strong, quick tugs and bites down sharply on his neck.
"Draco!" he moans, clutching at strong arms as pleasure pours out of him, his hips jerking and his balls contracting as he pulses between them. He kisses wherever his lips can reach as Draco nips and licks at the bite, running his hands soothingly over Harry's body and throbbing inside him not long after.
He slides his arms around Draco's neck and guides his nose along scarred skin until he reaches a cheekbone. Harry kisses Draco's cheek before speaking. "I'm going to stay. I promise."
Harry does not need to count the days to know that oestrus is over. He wakes tangled beside Draco and can feel the difference. It is distinct. He does not itch to have the man inside him, filling him and showering him with affection. He did not expect it to be such a noticeable change but he supposes that after living a week wanting nothing but his Alpha, he would notice how drastic that yearning had been. It is a rather jarring change and he can understand now why Draco is wary.
It does not change the fact that he had been falling for Draco before heat though. He still wanted to be with Draco. It simply was not an overbearing and persistent yearning. It was more normal, more human.
When he stretches, he can feel his muscles ache and he has become aware of just how sore his arse is. It is not surprising though, what with the week they have had. Draco's eyes open without his moving a limb and he looks at Harry. That is all he does, as if he is waiting for something. Harry yawns and then smiles at him.
"Morning," he greets, before leaning in to kiss Draco's cheek.
"What are you doing?" Draco asks warily.
"Contemplating whether or not I want to take a piss or just go back to sleep," he answers, resting his head beside Draco's. "I'm dead tired and everywhere hurts."
"Too tired to go home?" Draco asks, still wary.
"No," he mumbles, as he gets himself comfortable. "What? Want me to leave or something?"
The blonde blinks at him. Harry does not think he should be quite so surprised.
"I told you I was going to stay," he says. "What are you, deaf?"
"No. More like full of disbelief," Draco mutters.
"Well get rid of it," he says, taking the man's arm and wrapping it around himself and entangling them once more. "You gave me a chance so have a little hope."
"Have you ever heard of space?" Draco mutters half heartedly, even as he puts an arm around Harry.
"No," he answers. "Go to bed."
He is practically on top Draco as he drifts back to sleep. Harry has a thing about cuddling that previous lovers found a bit suffocating. He is not sure where it came from originally but he does it because he hates to wake up alone. Hermione thinks it is a Dursley side effect.
The night before Teddy is to begin his potions, they go out for ice cream. They sit in Fortescue's, which had been bought and repaired by a young couple, and Teddy is scrunching his face at Draco's choice of Pistachio Heaven (if only because it is green and he thinks it will taste like broccoli because of it). Harry is having the Chocolate Delight and Teddy has the Berry Bonanza, which he always changes his hair for so he can match the swirling colours.
Teddy is well aware of the fact that Harry and Draco are dating one another and has needed less explanation than most others since he had been there to smell the changes in them during Harry's oestrus period. Usually Teddy is wary of anyone Harry is involved with romantically but for once they both agree on his choice of lover. That alone is something that makes Harry want to stay with Draco, that and the fact that Draco is very understanding of Harry's devotion to his godson.
He never expected that Draco Malfoy would be the person to be attracted to him because of who he really is, rather than the person he is projected as in Wizarding society.
"Is Uncle Harry going to change again this month?" Teddy asks.
"No, he isn't," Draco answers, raising a brow at Teddy's cone.
"Teddy, your ice cream's melting. Don't just lick one side," Harry says, prompting the boy begin salvaging the colourful treat.
"So are we going to stay at the Manor this week?" Teddy asks, as he inspects his cone. "Or are we still going to Uncle Harry's."
"That's up to Draco," he says to the boy. "Although I wouldn't mind staying at the Manor and Andromeda doesn't have a problem with it."
"So can we?" Teddy asks. His mouth is more than covered with blue, purple and red that no amount of licking could get rid of. Harry rests his chin in his hand and waits for a response.
"If your Nan is agreeable then I don't see why not," Draco says, spelling the mess away.
Harry grins, much like Teddy, and has a spoonful of his ice cream. He bumps their shoulders together to spare Teddy from anything too "mushy".
After they drop Teddy home for the night, Harry apparates them to the Manor rather than his flat.
They manage to make their way up to Draco's room and Harry stops the man from undressing him. Harry has promised to pamper Draco and he will, now.
"Let me do it," he says, kissing Draco and starting at the man's robes.
He undresses Draco layer by layer and even pulls his shoes and his socks off for him, much like he had done for Harry whenever he was going to bathe during proestrus and oestrus. Harry pulls Draco over to the bed and has him lie in the centre. The only reason he did not carry the man is because he knows Draco would not have liked it. He then strips himself, slowly and hopefully in a somewhat attractive way. Harry was never one to be sultry.
Once he is nude, he climbs on the bed and atop Draco, kissing him and nipping at him softly, nibbling gently on his lip before he pulls away and smiles at him.
"Are you going to complain or are you going to let me pamper you tonight?" he asks, pre-empting whatever it is Draco looks like he is going to say or ask.
"I suppose I can allow you to pamper me," Draco eventually says. "You did promise, after all. Who am I to make you break that promise?"
"Yes, who are you?" he teases, before kissing Draco's lips, nose and cheeks.
Harry traces a finger over the man's scars and follows up with a gentle kiss on each of them, gliding his tongue along them when he felt like it. He moves down Draco's neck and shoulder, travelling down his arm to his palm and fingertips before moving to the other hand. This time he begins with the tips of Draco's fingers, pausing to lavish the Dark Mark because it is a scar in its own right, and makes his way up until he is back at the man's chest, which is heaving gently as Draco takes short breaths and stares at him in wonder. Harry simply smiles at him before kissing and laving and caressing his way down the man's torso. He sucks and flicks his tongue at each nipple, tongues the dip of the man's navel. He travels down one hip to the man's toes and the back up the other.
Draco watches him intently and Harry spreads the man's legs, lifting them at the knees to expose him and then ducks his head down to kiss each arse cheek before he licks a stripe between the two, pulling a gasp from the man as he begins to kiss and tongue at the sensitive knot of flesh until Draco is writhing on the bed. Harry then makes his way up, licking and sucking on each testicle before he tends to the hard shaft of Draco penis and up to the head. He licks and he nips carefully and he sucks and he swallows, moaning around the man. He slips a finger inside Draco and searches for that knot of muscles inside him and soon enough his mouth is flooded with warmth as the man throbs between his lips and clamps around his finger.
It only takes a few tugs on his own cock before Harry is messing the sheets beneath him.
"How was that for pampering?" he asks, laying beside Draco and curling his body around him.
Draco kisses him and Harry feels himself melting from the warmth of it. "How's that for an answer?" Draco asks.
Harry rolls his eyes but smiles. He has both his wolves and he does not need much more than them.