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Once More, With Feeling

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Albus kept half an eye on his dorm mates as he and Scorpius sat on his bed trying to finish their Charms essays. It was Sunday evening after a busy Hogsmeade weekend, and everyone was in that strange state of exhausted excitement as they wound down from two days of ignoring their studies. From what Albus could make out from the conversation carrying on loudly around him, one or more of his dorm mates had ‘got lucky’ with one or more Ravenclaw girls, and possibly a Hufflepuff. He wasn’t really paying any attention though; as long as none of them mentioned Lily or one of his cousins then he was happy to let them get on with it. It was fucking distracting though.

“That’s one for the spank bank, eh?” yelled Barnaby as he darted toward the bathroom door.

Rafe, with his still-occasionally-undecipherable Welsh accent, shouted something back that Albus didn’t quite catch, but which was evidently hilarious judging by the way the others fell about laughing. Stephen shouldn’t even be in their dorm, Albus thought sourly. He was a sixth year; didn’t he have friends of his own? He tried to block out their voices and focus on his essay, but it was becoming increasingly difficult with the four boys getting rowdier by the second.

Rafe and Elliot weren’t normally so bad. In fact, Albus got on with them quite well sometimes—they were generally respectful of boundaries, they never pestered him about his famous parents, and they had even stuck up for Scorpius a few times when some older students (Gryffindors, obviously) had teased him—but Barnaby was a prize bell-end. He was one of those effortlessly popular people who everyone fawned over. Okay, so objectively, Albus couldn’t deny he was handsome—if broad-shouldered, muscular types with chiselled jaws and smooth, flawless skin were your cup of tea—but his twattishness detracted heavily from the aesthetic appeal, in Albus’ opinion. Not that he fancied him; he was a boy, and Albus didn’t fancy boys, he just thought sometimes they looked nice.

The laughter continued, interspersed with things Albus could only half hear—… tits on her… wanked myself raw!… brother said… fanny for days…—and to be honest, really didn’t want to hear at all. He’d never understood their obsession with girls. It was all they ever talked about; surely there wasn’t that much to say? It wasn’t that he didn’t like girls himself—he could appreciate that some were prettier than others, and there were even a few that made his palms go a little sweaty and affected his ability to talk and act like a normal person—but he’d never felt the need to talk about them ceaselessly. He was glad he and Scorpius didn’t waste any time with that rubbish, discussing ridiculous things like the exact surface area of Polly’s arse, or the precise volume of Jenna’s tits, or how many guys they reckoned Amy Spencer had got off with since she hit her growth spurt.

“She said I could come over her tits, but you know how it is, I ended up getting spunk in her eye! Bloody hilarious. She didn’t speak to me for a week.” Barnaby had rejoined his friends, his booming voice grating on Albus’ last nerve.

He seriously hoped the conversation had moved on from their Hogsmeade trip because that sounded like the sort of thing that could get someone arrested. At this rate, he was going to end up accidentally writing about boobs or something, instead of the morality of memory charms. Flitwick would probably keel over. If only the library didn’t shut so fucking early, he wouldn’t have to put up with listening to this inane chatter.

“What you want to do is bash one out before you next see her, you know? Deplete the supplies a little, dial back the power a bit,” Stephen replied sagely and Albus choked back a derisive snort. Fucking idiot acted like he was the god of wanking just because he was a year older.

“Got a problem, Potter?” Albus froze, suddenly aware of how quiet the room was, and when he looked up, he found four pairs of eyes staring at him. Fuck. He hadn’t meant to draw attention to himself. He just wanted to get his stupid essay finished.

“Nah, just got something stuck in my throat.” He coughed twice to emphasise his point and turned back to his book. Idiots.

Scorpius prodded him in the thigh with the toe of his outstretched leg and mouthed Nice save when Albus met his eye. They shared a brief private smile before Albus made a concerted effort to block out the voices.

When, after half an hour, the bawdy conversation showed no sign of abating, Albus decided to give up on studying. He couldn’t take anymore speculation about which girls were more likely to ‘give it up’ on a first date, and whether Anna really had given Wilf that blowie behind the greenhouses or if he’d made it up after she’d dumped him for Torin. It was worse than being at home when James had his friends over; nothing but shouting, and bragging, and laughing as if their conversation was more important than what everyone else was doing. He’d put earplugs in, infused with a modified Muffliato, but it was no use. He could still see them out of the corner of his eye, making vulgar gestures, waving their arms around, and acting more like excited bonobos than sixteen-year-old humans.

“Fuck this, I’m going to bed,” he snapped, slamming his textbook shut and looking at Scorpius for his anticipated support and agreement, but finding him still staring at his textbook. Albus leaned a bit closer and saw that aside from a hastily scribbled couple of paragraphs, Scorpius hadn’t written anything, and not only that, he was still on the same page of the book that he’d been reading twenty minutes ago when Albus had asked to borrow his earplugs.

“Scorp?” he said a little more insistently. Perhaps he hadn’t heard Albus over the sound of all the yelling about wanking. As if proving their ongoing detriment to society, Rafe chose that moment to yell out something else about his dick that Al didn’t care to hear. Merlin, anyone would think they were gay with the amount of time they spent talking about their tackle. He leant forward and waved to get Scorpius’ his attention, but ended up sort of stroking his knee when he dropped his hand down, his fingers gently grazing the fine weave of his trousers.

“Hmm? Did you say something?” Scorpius blinked owlishly like he’d just been roused from a deep, potion-induced sleep.

“I just said I’m going to get ready for bed. Probably have a shower. You want to come?” He winced internally at the way that sounded. He didn’t want Scorpius to think he was propositioning him. That would be ridiculous. “I mean… not together… like in the same cubicle. I just meant, if you want to shower, or even if you don’t want to shower, that maybe you’d want to do it togeth— shit. I mean at the same time. Different place, although same room, so kind of the same place, I—Fuck.” He glared at Scorpius who was creased up with silent laughter, his shoulders vibrating as he ducked his head forward to stifle his giggles. Albus glowered and his cheeks felt like they were kicking out more heat than the wood burner in the centre of the room. “Oh, shut up, Scorp. You know what I meant,” he huffed as he slid off the bed and gathered up his toiletries, pyjamas, and a towel.

Albus had to work hard to maintain his scowl. He loved it when Scorpius lost himself to laughter. His whole face lit up; eyes scrunched into slits, little dimples in his cheeks, a broad, toothy grin splitting his face in half. It was kind of breath-taking and it made Albus want to hug him tight and never let go. He was so much nicer to look at than Barnaby, whose face just went red and sweaty when he laughed like he was grunting out a particularly troublesome shit. Albus would never understand why people liked him so much.

“You coming or what?” he mumbled over his shoulder when Scorpius made no move to get up.

“Umm. No. I think I’m going to try and… um. I should…” his eyes roamed the bed as if seeking inspiration. “Essay! Yes. Don’t worry, I’ll shift over to my bed so you can sleep,” he finished brightly. Too brightly, considering he’d just declared he was going to do more homework.

“Oh, okay,” Albus said, a little confused by Scorpius’ odder than normal behaviour. But if he wanted to try and work while those mouth-breathers continued to shout about their dicks then more fool him, especially since his bed was even closer to the racket.

When the bathroom door swung shut behind him, he breathed a sigh of relief. Finally. Beautiful silence. He should have worked in here, he thought, turning on the shower in the far cubicle and stripping while he waited for the water to heat up.

As he listened to the hiss of the water and the clunky rattle of the pipes, he wondered whether it was weird that he wasn’t like the other guys. He still had no desire to chase girls; at least, not in the same way the others did judging by the way they spoke. He’d never really worried about it before, though, because he had been certain he and Scorpius were on the same page. With the way Scorpius was acting this evening, however… it almost seemed like he was trying to listen to what the guys were saying, that he was eager to join in. And if that was the case, where did that leave Albus?

Later, as he slipped between deliciously cool sheets, feeling fresh and clean from his shower, he saw Scorpius through the crack in his curtains, still sitting up in his bed and staring at the book in his lap, but clearly not reading anything judging by his unfocused look. He shifted restlessly in his bed and tried to put everything he’d heard that evening out of his head, fervently hoping he didn’t dream of dicks. Again.

When sleep finally claimed him, it was to thoughts of Scorpius’ radiant smile and the feel of his soft trousers under Albus’ fingertips.

———

Over the next few days, Albus became hyper-aware of Scorpius’ continued strange behaviour. He was quieter than normal and seemed preoccupied with something. More than once, Albus noticed his eyes glazing over as they chatted. He also kept disappearing off to darkened corners of the library when they were in there studying with no word of where he was going or what he was looking for. Albus tried asking what was wrong a few times, but after the third or fourth slightly-too-cheery deflection, he gave up. Scorpius would talk to him in his own time if it was important. He wasn’t overly concerned; Scorpius didn’t seem upset about anything, he was just… not entirely present. It had happened on occasion before when he got wrapped up in a particularly tricky puzzle, and he always came to Albus in the end, once he’d straightened things out in his mind.

On Friday, they tucked themselves away in their usual corner of the common room with a stack of comics and some revision notes (just in case the desire to study struck). Scorpius was fidgeting even more than usual, glancing at the stairs to the dormitories every few seconds. Albus could tell he was building up to saying something. He waited patiently all evening, deliberately not commenting on the way Scorpius wriggled and squirmed like he had a Chizpurfle infestation in his pants, and gently tried to prod him into opening up with a few open questions, like How are you? and Heard any decent gossip recently? Unsurprisingly, this line of questioning failed to spur on a confession—Al might look like his dad, but he’d certainly never make Auror with interrogation skills this shit.

Scorpius remained skittish all night, and by the time they were stood in their pyjamas, brushing their teeth side-by-side in the bathroom, Albus had all but given up on finding out what was on his friend’s mind. They took turns to spit out their toothpaste and rinse, sharing a sink as usual, but when Albus turned to leave, Scorpius grabbed him by the wrist, holding him there.

Was this it? Was Scorpius going to reveal what had been fogging up his head all week? He stared up at his best friend, taking in the fleck of toothpaste on his bottom lip; the pale blue cotton pyjamas that turned his eyes from icy grey to a cool, wintery blue; the usually neatly coiffed hair now casually swept back from when he’d washed his face. The hand that wasn’t clasped around Albus’ wrist flexed over and over, fingers catching on the hem of his pyjama top.

“Umm. Do you ever think about how… um. When you… um. When you’re alone and you’re… you know—” Scorpius’ voice dropped to an urgent whisper “—touching yourself—” Albus choked on his spit as he tried to swallow and gasp at the same time, but Scorpius ignored the interruption and ploughed on, grey eyes burning with some unknown question. “Do you… do you ever wonder if you’re… doing it right?”

Oh. “Er…” Albus blinked. It sounded like Scorpius was talking about wanking, but that was a… weird thing to bring up now. Or ever. “Do you mean…” Albus found he couldn’t say the word out loud so made a feeble gesture with his free hand, which only served to draw a visibly flustered Scorpius’ attention to his crotch. Shit shit shit.

Scorpius hastily shifted his gaze up to the ceiling. His lips were white from pressing them tightly together, but his cheeks were stained deep pink. He let go of Albus’ arm in favour wringing his hands. “It’s just, last week, when the others were chatting, I may have overheard a little bit of what they were saying and… they were talking about…technique—”

Albus exhaled loudly and scrubbed a hand over his face. Merlin, but was this really happening? Were they really having a conversation about this while stood in their pyjamas in a slightly musty bathroom? He wasn’t sure whether he or Scorpius would combust first—his friend’s face was flaming. Albus darted his eyes around the room, unable to settle on anything that didn’t remind him of people being naked. Would it be rude to just walk out and never talk of this again? He knew Scorpius hadn’t been paying attention to his fucking essay that night… He tuned back into what Scorpius was saying, quickly realising he hadn’t yet, despite Albus’ fervent hopes, dropped the subject.

“—and, well, I have no idea if I’m doing it right, or efficiently, and I’ve never once measured how much or timed how long, and what if I’ve been doing it wrong all this time? How would I know? I’ve never compared techniques to anyone else, and literature on the subject is surprisingly scarce.”

“Oh my g— Is that what you were looking for in the library?” Albus hissed, a chill running through him as it suddenly dawned on him that Scorpius was deadly serious about this.

“Of course, where else would I look for books?”

Albus stared at him, eyes wide, his jaw flapping uselessly as he tried to formulate words. Any words at all. Only Scorpius would try to look for information about wanking in a school library. He just hoped he’d had the sense not to ask Madam Pince for help. Merlin.

“So, do you and James ever… um… compare notes, as it were?” Scorpius continued. He was looking at Albus like he was one of Professor Longbottom’s exotic, potentially venomous plants and he couldn’t work out the best way to proceed.

“What? No! Merlin, fuck, no.” Albus spluttered. He paused and screwed his eyes shut against the onslaught of graphic images suddenly assaulting his brain. “Fuck. Scorp, why’d you put that in my head just before bed? Or, like, ever? What are you trying to do to me?”

“I’m sorry, I just—” He reached out as if to grab Albus’ arm again, but aborted the move partway through and instead ran his fingers through his hair while he paced back and forth. “I just really want to know! You know how much I hate not knowing things, and the library has failed me!” he wailed, looking for all the world like someone just kidnapped the stuffed niffler he still took to bed with him every night. But then he paused, his expression clearing, eyes suddenly wide before turning shrewd, considering.

Albus knew that look, and he didn’t like it one bit. He took a step back, shaking his head and bringing his hands up defensively. “No. Whatever it is, no.”

“But, Albus!” Scorpius whined. “It’s for science! Enquiring minds need to know!”

He glared at his friend, hands clenched at his sides, and wondered whether he could blast a Reducto through the floor and disappear by sheer force of will alone. This was, without a doubt, the strangest and most awkward conversation he’d ever had the misfortune to be a part of.

When Albus didn’t reply, Scorpius frowned and looked down at the floor, wiggling his bare toes on the tiles. “It doesn’t have to be a big deal.” He shrugged, smoothing down a non-existent crease in his pyjama top. He flicked his gaze up, fixing Albus with a hopeful stare. “It’s just an experiment. I’m not suggesting we, you know, do anything to each other, just next to each other. Or back to back would work, I suppose. Or even separate cubicles in the toilets if you’re going to be squeamish about it—”

“You want us to wank together?” Albus squeaked, eyeing the cubicles that suddenly seemed a lot more threatening. “Now?”

“No! Of course not, I’m horrendously unprepared. I need to work out some variables first, set the parameters, get some parchment and a quill for taking notes—self-inking would be best, don’t you think? Oh, maybe I can get one of those Quick Quotes ones! ”

Variables!? Sweet Merlin, kill me,” Albus muttered, turning his eyes skyward in a silent plea for salvation from the nightmare he’d found himself in. Scorpius hadn’t denied the idea, just the now part. He dragged a suddenly unpleasantly sweaty hand over his face as if he could wipe the proposition from his mind. “This isn’t happening.”

Scorpius softened, his smile one of understanding as he reached out and placed a hand on Albus’ shoulder. “Look, it’s fine if you don’t want to do it. It’s a lot to ask, I know. And I’m sure I can find someone else—”

“No!” The word was out of Albus’ mouth before he even had a chance to fully process what Scorpius was saying. He carefully avoided reflecting on why the thought of Scorpius wanking with someone other than him was so horrifying.

“No? So then you’ll…?”

“Uhhh…” Shit What could he do? If he agreed, he’d have to get his knob out in front of Scorpius, which would be horrifically embarrassing, but if he didn’t… “Can you just give me a little time to think about it before you go making plans with anyone else?” Albus hated how needy he sounded, but it was for Scorpius’ own good, right? He couldn’t allow his best friend to go wandering up to random guys and asking about their wanking technique. He’d get the shit kicked out of him. That was why it was so horrifying. Yes. He only had Scorpius’ best interests in mind.

“Of course, of course. There’s no rush!” Scorpius said brightly.

A hideously uncomfortable silence descended over the bathroom. Albus studied the far wall and studiously ignored the heat radiating from his face. He could see Scorpius fidgeting out of the corner of his eye and willed him to say something, anything, so they could move on from this.

“Well, we’d best get to bed,” Scorpius said eventually, answering Albus’ silent plea. “I’ve a full day of O.W.L. revision planned tomorrow!” He breezed out of the bathroom, a spring in his step that had been missing for the last week.

Albus slumped back against the wall. Merlin, but what was he going to do? Perhaps the exam revision stress had got to Scorpius and sent him loopy. He couldn’t really want them to wank together, could he? Just how awful was his technique? Was there actually a right or wrong way? Albus would be the first to admit that he probably lacked finesse himself, but whatever he was doing, it got the job done, made a mess of his bedsheets or the shower tiles, so it couldn’t be that bad. Unless… What if there was a better way?

With a start, he realised his dick had begun to take notice of the images circling in his head and was starting to… make its presence felt. All he needed now was for Barnaby to stroll into the bathroom and Albus’ utter mortification would be complete. He shook his head and tried to push all thoughts of Scorpius and dicks and wanking out of his mind. Merlin knew what he’d be dreaming about tonight. If he could even sleep.

———

Albus got hardly any rest that night with Scorpius’ proposition swirling round and round in his head, and the little sleep he managed was plagued by images of his dorm mates wanking everywhere he looked, interspersed with his brother’s laughing face (thanks, Scorpius). The following day, feeling wrung out, confused and mildly traumatised thanks to his vivid imagination, it was all Albus could do to place one foot in front of the other. He was barely capable of concentrating on the O.W.L. revision plan Scorpius had cooked up for them, unable to keep his thoughts focused on the dry texts and unnecessarily complicated potions recipes they were supposed to be studying. All he could think about was dicks. He mourned the simpler, more innocent times of the previous morning when his main concerns had been remembering to reply to his dad’s last letter and wondering what Jenna Cuthridge had meant when she’d smiled at him while saying hello on the way to breakfast. But then Scorpius had opened this jar of thick, seven-inch flobberworms in his head and suddenly everything was different.

Scorpius. His best friend. His only true friend. And now the boy who also wanted to compare masturbation techniques with him. All day he found his eyes darting to the side, seeking him out; watching him, wondering whether he was looking at other boys, scoping them out for his little experiment. The idea made him sick to his stomach. What if Albus denied him, and then he found someone else? Would they do other things together? What if they became friends and Albus was pushed to the side? It made his gut squirm, his insides smouldering with a dull rage—the thought of someone else being as close to Scorpius as he was.

Or closer.

He found himself scowling at every person who even glanced in their direction, his lip curling as he snarled like an over-protective guard dog if anyone’s gaze lingered. He couldn’t blame them for looking—Scorpius had that aristocratic handsomeness thing going for him, with his pale skin, perfect hair, lean physique, and high cheekbones. He might lack the severe angles and cold beauty of his father, but he was still every bit as striking. Not that he thought Mr Malfoy was striking—ugh—but he’d seen pictures of him in his younger days and, well, he would have to have been blind not to notice he was an attractive man in his youth. Objectively, of course.

By Saturday lunchtime Albus knew he was going to do it. Of course he was. Had there ever been any question, really? The trouble was, once his mind was made up, he then had to find the right time to bring up the subject, and how exactly was he supposed to say, “I want you to watch me wank, for science,” without bursting into flames and dying of embarrassment? Yes, he supposed he could say it like that, or something like “You know that wanking idea you had, let’s do it,” but any and all words died in his throat the second he looked at Scorpius.

By dinner, he was practically vibrating with the need to offload his decision. He could see Scorpius watching him, his delicate eyebrows drawing together in concern. Albus desperately wanted him to ask about it again, so that all he had to say was ‘yes’ or even better—since words were being particularly problematic at the moment—just nod his head.

Fate—or whichever deity responded to the pleas of horny teenage boys—was finally smiling on him that evening though, because as he was scraping up the last bits of custard from his bowl, Scorpius leaned in, his nose nudging Albus’ ear. The spoon’s movement across the bottom of the bowl stuttering to a halt as Albus’ heart leapt into his throat. What was Scorpius doing? Had they always sat this close? Having thought of little but Scorpius’ dick recently, it was fast becoming impossible to remember how he used to act around his friend.

“Al,” Scorpius hissed, as if Albus hadn’t noticed the breath on his neck or the warmth of the body that had no regard for personal space and was currently pressed against his shoulder and thigh. How could Scorpius be so clueless about the effect he had on him? “About what I said before, you know, about the mastur—”

“YES!” Albus shouted, his tongue completely bypassing his brain. He slapped a hand over his mouth but it was too late. A wave of silence washed over the hall from where he sat. A Hufflepuff two tables over dropped their spoon, the metallic clatter sounding like cannon fire in the sudden stillness. “Sorry,” Albus muttered, his face burning. Merlin. Now would be a really fantastic time for a conveniently placed troll or a stray basilisk to attack and distract everyone.

“Does that mean you’ll do it?” Scorpius whispered once the noise picked up again. His grey eyes were wide as they pinned Albus with an open, hopeful look. Albus tried not to squirm in his seat.

“Uhh, yeah? If you’ve not found anyone else, I guess I can… um. Help out. What are friends for?” He smiled in what he hoped was a reassuring way, but from the look on Scorpius’ face, it was probably more of a grimace.

“Right, right, yes. So… tonight?”

T-tonight?

“Yes! Or. Well, I suppose ‘this evening’ would be more accurate. When’s the cut off, do you think, between the two? Nevermind. So, yes, this evening-slash-tonight (clarification pending). No time like the present, I always say!”

“Okay. Great. We’re doing it,” Albus said determinedly, his voice sounding much more confident than he felt. What in the name of Salazar’s saggy balls was he getting himself into?

On the way back to their common room after dinner, Scorpius kept up a constant commentary of all the places he thought they could go for some privacy and what supplies they would need. Albus couldn’t really do much more than nod along. The beef casserole he’d eaten felt like a writhing ball of worms in his stomach and he couldn’t stop sweating. His skin prickled uncomfortably, veering wildly between clammy and flushed, and he couldn’t decide if he needed to puke or piss through his arse. He thought for sure he was coming down with something. He’d wanked loads of times so it was ridiculous to be getting so nervous just because this time there would be another presence in the room. Hell, he’d wanked in the dorm before while all his roommates slept, and even in the shower too while someone was in the cubicle next but one (it wasn’t something he was in a hurry to repeat, but it was better than walking around all day with a stiffy). But… Fuck. What if he couldn’t perform? At this rate, his dick would shrivel up into his pubes. He hadn’t even considered that particular humiliation yet. Would Scorpius laugh at him if his dick looked like a limp noodle?

Scorpius’ voice cut through his spiralling panic before he had a chance to pass out. “I want to get that Potions reading done, and shower, but then we should go, yes? We don’t want to get caught out after curfew.”

“Go where?” Albus looked up and saw they were already outside the door to their dormitory. When had that happened?

“To that empty classroom on the 3rd floor. You know, by the statue of Egbert the Meek,” he added when Albus stared at him dumbly. “Haven’t you listened to a word I’ve said?”

“Uhhh, yeah, sure. I, um…”

Scorpius pursed his lips and peered at him through narrowed eyes. “Are you okay? Only, you look a little bit like you’re about to vomit. Can I get you a glass of water?” He leant forward and placed a cool, dry hand on Albus’ sweaty mess of a forehead. “We… we don’t have to do this,” he said with a slight frown as Albus flinched away from his touch.

“No, no, I want to,” Albus said quickly as ducked past Scorpius to enter the dorm. “Let’s just get this reading out of the way and then we can… get the other thing over with.”

Scorpius made a little noise of discontent, but Albus didn’t turn around or acknowledge him. He wanted to do this. He did. And he didn’t want Scorpius to try and talk him out of it because then what? He’d probably find someone else, or else wander to the empty classroom by himself, and what sort of friend would Albus be if he sat back and let that happen?

———

Albus had never seen inside the classroom Scorpius lead him to. He’d walked along the corridor enough times when the staircases misbehaved and forced him the long way round to Charms, but he’d never really paid attention to the narrow doorway set into the wall beside the cowering statue of Egbert. He wasn’t sure he wanted to know how Scorpius had found out about it; he was just about coping with the idea of Scorpius wanking.

A single torch flared to life as Scorpius pushed the door open, casting dancing shadows around the small, dusty room. It clearly hadn’t been used for a long time, which was something of a relief. There were desks and chairs in various states of repair scattered haphazardly around the room and the ceiling was high, and beamed, the very top of it lost to darkness. The walls were bare, unadorned stone but the light from the solitary torch leant them a warm glow. It was a small, unloved space, but Albus didn’t hate it like he thought he might. It didn’t seem like somewhere he’d ever imagined getting his knob out, but at least it was quiet, and they’d both cast the sturdiest locking spells they knew at the door.

Scorpius navigated past piles of discarded parchment and broken bits of chair to dump his bag on what had once been the teacher’s desk at the head of the classroom, then he turned around and surveyed the room with a critical eye, his hands on his hips. Albus hung back by the door, unsure of what to do with himself. He watched, nerves thrumming, as Scorpius cleared a space in front of the desk and then dragged two of the less-rickety chairs to face it all while keeping up a constant stream of chatter about everything from what he thought of the dinner menu, to how many hours of revision he thought he still needed to do. He then proceeded to pull things out of his bag one by one—notebook, quill, magazine, another quill, some small phials—and set them down on the desk, his hands fluttering around as he aligned everything neatly. It helped to calm some of Albus’ nerves to see Scorpius looking a little flustered. Maybe this wouldn’t be the horrific, friendship altering experience he was imagining… or maybe they were both so nervous, they’d be sat there for hours, furiously wanking but neither able to reach orgasm.

“So.” Scorpius said, startling Albus out of his thoughts. His hands were on his hips again, his lower lip caught in his teeth.

“So…” repeated Albus. His heart was racing and his stomach felt all bubbly and squirmy like he was about to present an essay to the school in nothing but his underwear. Speaking of… were they supposed to strip for this? He kicked himself for not asking Scorpius for further clarification on the finer details of his little experiment.

Scorpius unleashed a breathy, high-pitched chuckle. “So… Do you want to, um, get straight into it? Or should we have a little warm up first?”

“Warm up?” Albus screwed up his face, his head suddenly filled with images of them exercising while their cocks swung around distractingly. “What, like, jog around the room or something?” he asked, genuinely concerned. A bit of light masturbation was one thing, but he never signed up for exercise.

Scorpius pinned him with a look of utter exasperation coloured with a healthy amount of disbelief. “I meant, should we have a trial run of the, um, main event or do you want to just dive right in?”

“Oh! Oh, shit. I get it now.” Albus felt his cheeks flush with heat, an all too common state these days. Of course, Scorpius hadn’t meant for them to jog. Merlin, he was making such a tit of himself. “Sorry,” he muttered. “This is all just a bit… you know. Weird.” Albus briefly toyed with the idea of bashing one out for practice, maybe in the privacy of the small storage cupboard at the back of the room, but then he decided that with his tanks fully stocked, as it were, he stood a much better chance of being able to perform. “Let’s just get on with it.”

“Excellent, excellent. Right.” To Albus’ horror, Scorpius unhooked the clasp of his robes and shrugged them off shoulders before folding them carefully and hanging them over the back of a chair. Then his fingers moved straight to his waistband and he started unbuttoning the fly on his trousers. Albus hastily turned his back and glued his wide-eyed gaze to a small crack in one of the bricks in the wall.

“Do you usually use something to inspire the creative juices, or do you just close your eyes and use your imagination?” Scorpius asked casually, as if he hadn’t just undone his trousers in front of Albus, in the middle of a classroom.

Fuck, this was embarrassing. Albus squeezed his eyes shut. Best just to answer and get the admin over with. “Um… Imagination? Usually? Sometimes, at home, I nick one of James’ jazz mags,” he mumbled. Scorpius hummed interestedly and Albus heard faint scratching as he jotted something down in his notebook.

“And how long would you say you last for a normal session?”

“What?” Albus squeaked. He still hadn’t turned around to face Scorpius, but he could well imagine the face he was making; innocently curious, like Albus’ wank habits were an interesting new homework topic.

“Haven’t you been listening? The whole point of this evening is to see how our timings match up. When they were talking, the guys implied that they lasted for quite some time and I… I… worry I might finish a little quick. How will I ever keep someone interested if I orgasm as soon as we start anything?”

Albus was going to kill Barnaby and the rest of them for putting such shit in Scorpius’ head. “We’re teenage boys, Scorp. We’re not supposed to have staying power.” He finally risked a glance over his shoulder, and then turned fully around once he realised Scorpius wasn’t standing there completely starkers. He was flicking forlornly through the magazine he’d brought with him, a little wrinkle between his eyebrows the only sign he was troubled. His trousers were hanging open, but his white pants—incredibly form-fitting, white pants, Albus noted—were preserving his modesty. He wished he could make everything okay and stop Scorpius from doubting himself. “If you want to just go back…” he offered cautiously, ignoring a twinge of disappointment. After all, they’d come this far…

“Do you not want to do it?”

“No, no, yeah I’ll still do it, if that’s what you want?”

“Yes! There’s nothing like a bit of practical, hands-on experience.” He shook his head minutely and the doubt in his face was replaced with an almost eager smile. “Come on, then. Let’s get this over before curfew.” He flipped the magazine open to a random page and sat it up on the desk, securing it into place with some stray masonry, then ensured both chairs angled towards it.

Albus goggled. He’d seen his fair share of porn, but he’d never had to look at anything quite so graphic while another person—Scorpius—stood right beside him. They’d never had that sort of relationship. He didn’t want to think about where Scorpius had got hold of a porno mag—did he have a secret stash somewhere in the dorm?—and tried to put his friend out of his head as he watched a well-endowed woman on one page pleasuring herself with a potion bottle. On the other page, the same woman (possibly; it was tricky to tell with the angle of the shot) was bent over a desk while a tall, muscled blond with a smooth, hairless arse and balls pounded into her. His dick glimmered, wet and slick, as it slid in and out of the woman with mesmerising regularity. Albus felt his cock twitch in interest. He chanced a look at Scorpius who’d taken the seat on the left, and found his friend staring at him. As soon as he saw Albus looking, though, he darted his gaze away and his cheeks coloured a beautiful dusky pink. That was… interesting.

With a deep, resigned breath, Albus sat down in the chair beside Scorpius, shuffling it to the side to put a touch more distance between them. He could see in his peripheral vision that Scorpius already had a hand in his groin area, and the thought made his chest tighten, his dick starting to thicken as he fleetingly imagined the heat of that hand on his own groin. No more putting it off, he thought. His fingers trembled as he undid his trousers, the zip fighting him at every step, but after what felt like a lifetime, he managed to expose his boxers. The green and pink stripes looked jarringly bright in the dimly lit room. There was a little more shuffling and fidgeting as he tried to pull his trousers down enough so he wouldn’t catch his sack on the metal teeth of the zip, but he was eventually comfortable. Or, as comfortable as he could be on an unforgiving, wooden chair and with his jeans tugged half off his arse. When he looked back up at the magazine, he saw the girl with the potion bottle leering at him.

“Ready?” Scorpius asked once he’d stilled. Albus nodded, not quite trusting his voice. Okay, here, hold out your hand.”

Unthinkingly, Albus held out his hand out and suppressed a shiver as Scorpius took it in his and then turned it over. He then pointed his wand at Albus’ palm and said, in a steady, confident voice: “Lubrio.” Albus gasped as a clear, thick, liquid trickled from Scorpius’ wand into his open hand.

“What the— Where’d you learn that?” He’d heard about the spell in passing but he’d never actually known the correct incantation. How long had Scorpius been keeping this from him? He ran his fingers through the slick substance, marvelling at how smooth it felt.

“I found it in a library book,” Scorpius said as he conjured a small pool of the liquid in his own hand and then placed his wand on the floor by his chair.

“Why the fuck does the library have books like that in it?”

“You’d be surprised what the Library has to offer, if you know where to look… and I know where to look.” He grinned, looking altogether too pleased with himself. “Okay, let’s do this.”

Albus nodded and closed his eyes briefly to steeled himself against what was about to happen.

When he opened them again, he focused on the magazine, trying to concentrate on the images and not the sound of Scorpius’ hand sliding up and down over his dick. He palmed himself through his boxers to build up some pressure and was pleased to feel his dick cooperating. Maybe this wouldn’t be so difficult. He slid his hand under the waistband of his lurid boxers and encircled his growing erection with an unsteady hand, releasing a shaky breath at the feel of his own fingers. His hips jerked upward involuntarily, thrusting into his fist as he tightened his grip and then stroked himself to full hardness. His eyes fluttered shut, the magazine nothing but a distant memory. He could hear Scorpius breathing heavily, his breaths coming short and fast. He cut a glance to the side and saw Scorpius furiously working his cock, his head tipped back, eyes closed, and mouth hanging open. Albus couldn’t tear his eyes away from the smooth line of his pale throat and his delicate pink lips. He looked so debauched already. How long had they been going for? It could only have been a few minutes, tops. A breathy moan escaped Scorpius’ lips, the sound going straight to Albus’ dick and he had to bite back an answering noise. This was too weird. He shouldn’t find his best friend’s sex face so arousing. Albus made a concerted effort to look at the magazine propped up in front of him, but it just wasn’t doing anything for him. The tits were too big, the way the woman looked like she could devour any man in her path was frankly terrifying, and the man was too tanned, too muscular. His hair was the wrong colour too. Albus shut his eyes and tried to think about all the fit girls he’d seen around school, or any girls, but Scorpius’ little sounds were so distracting; the short, panting breaths, the slick slide of his hand working his erection, the little moans and murmured words. Albus moved his hand faster, keeping pace with Scorpius, heat gathering in his gut and making his whole body tingle with anticipation, until—

“Oh, sweet merciful Merlin, fuck I’m—” Scorpius cut himself off with a deep groan and Albus couldn’t help himself. He snapped his eyes open and whipped his head around to see his friend, only to find him staring right back, his face pink, his gaze heavy, his jaw slack, and Albus suddenly found himself crashing over the edge too. Come splashed up his t-shirt as his body jerked and shuddered through the most intense orgasm he could ever remember experiencing. He tore his gaze away from Scorpius, and shut his eyes, taking a moment to enjoy the post-orgasmic euphoria before his brain caught up and reminded him that he’d not only just wanked with his best friend barely a metre away, but he’d come while staring said best friend in the eye.

Fuck.

“Well, that was…” Scorpius said quietly, his voice rough like it was first thing in the morning when he was still half-asleep and fuzzy.

Albus couldn’t manage more than a croaked, “Yeah.” He slouched in the chair, ignoring the way the back dug into his spine and let his head fall back. His chest was still heaving, heart still beating a rapid rhythm, but everything was gradually returning to normal. He glanced over at Scorpius to check if he was similarly affected and his breath caught in his throat. Scorpius’ eyes were closed, his flushed face tilted to the ceiling, but there was a beatific smile on his lips. Albus traced the flush on his cheeks as it flowed down his neck and disappeared into his collar. Scorpius’ chest heaved as much as Albus’ and his hair was sticking up at the front as if he’d been carelessly running his hands through it, gripping it, maybe imagining it was someone else tugging at it as he pleasured himself—was that the sort of thing Scorpius liked? Was there ever a face attached to the rough hand? Albus’ clean hand absently wandered to his own hair, fingers teasing through the untameable, black locks, eyes drifting closed as he wondered whether he’d like it too; wondered what Scorpius’ fingers would feel like buried in his hair, let his mind wander. Had anyone ever seen Scorpius make that face before? Or even seen him in such a debauched state? Albus didn’t think so. Scorpius would surely have said something if he’d done anything like that with anyone; he had no filter when it came to Albus. The thought that he was probably the first sent a thrill zinging through him and his spent cock twitched half-heartedly in interest.

Oh. Ooohh, shit.

No. He shouldn’t be thinking these things about his best friend, he chided himself, and it certainly wasn’t any of his business who Scorpius imagined and what he imagined them doing. It was natural to be curious though...

The soft scratching of quill on parchment broke through the post-orgasmic high Albus was still clinging to and he was abruptly reminded of the reason for this experiment. Because that’s all it was. An experiment. He needed to stop getting carried away—Scorpius was only doing this with him because he needed a willing subject for his latest obsession. It was just like that time he decided he needed to know everything about Snitches, so he collected every one he could get his hands on and spent ages unravelling the spell work—the dorm had been littered with sharp, golden shards of metal for weeks after he kept accidentally exploding them. Or there was the time he simply had to find out how Muggle radios worked and so had talked Albus into asking his dad to send him a radio, which now lay in pieces beneath his bed. Albus was still dreading the day that his dad asked for it back.

“So, obviously I came first, but I think your come went further, judging by the spatter that reached your collar—” he leant towards Albus and scrutinised the mess on his shirt with academic curiosity “—although I think perhaps I came more.”

Albus flinched as Scorpius reached out a hand towards him. “Merlin, fuck, Scorp. Stop staring at my spunk! Godric's balls.” He crossed his arms irritatedly over his chest and then winced as the motion pressed patches of damp fabric into his skin.

“Oh! Sorry, I—Well, I need to, um, gather the... spoils, you see? It's not a proper experiment if I don't gather evidence. Otherwise, it's just us masturbating in a dusty room together.” He chuckled and scratched at one still-pink cheek.

“Go on then. Gather your spoils,” Albus grimaced. He uncrossed his arms, closed his eyes, and waited for Scorpius to get on with what he wanted. If he couldn't see it, then he could pretend it wasn't happening.

There was a faint rustle of parchment and then Scorpius muttered a spell. Albus felt the familiar touch of Scorpius’ magic as it washed over him, followed by the tingle of a cleaning charm and he shivered. In the silence that hung thick and heavy in the room, Albus started to relax. Scorpius’ magic always had that effect on him; it felt safe and welcoming like his mother’s embrace; warm and cosy like his bed on a cold winter’s morning. He waited patiently for whatever other spell Scorpius needed to do, anticipating that delicious shiver of recognition again, but nothing happened. Just as he was about to crack an eye open and see what the delay was, Scorpius spoke.

“Um… you can, you know... Pop your, um, little chap away now. I-if you want,” he spluttered haltingly.

Albus’ stomach dropped to the floor as he glanced down and took in the sight of his softened dick nestled in a bed of his black, wiry pubes, on display for all to see. Well. For Scorpius to see, if he wanted. Thankfully his friend was facing the other way, his bright pink ears and rigid posture the only sign of his embarrassment.

Fuck.

Albus hastily tucked himself away. “Sorry. I thought you wanted to... um… I don't know. Look at my jizz, or measure… something…?” he trailed off uncertainly. Was it too much to ask for an epic disaster to catapult him away from the room? What he wouldn’t do for another Time Turner right about now.

“Oh, I do!” Scorpius squeaked. “But I found this spell when I was in the library. It’s sort of like a Scourgify, in as much as it cleans, but rather than banishing, it collects the substance you’re cleaning into a container of your specification. Isn’t that wonderful? Look!” Albus noticed the pair of phials in Scorpius’ hand for the first time as flourished them in front of Albus’ face. There was a small amount of white, translucent liquid in each. Rather alarmingly, they looked just like the phials they used in Potions when providing Professor Woodbine with samples of their work. So, that was Potions class ruined for the foreseeable future.

“Is that…?” he started, horrified. He knew it was. There was nothing else it could be. But he still wanted clarification, just in case.

Scorpius grinned proudly and held the phials up the light, twisting and turning them as he examined their contents. Albus watched on, mesmerised by the viscosity of the liquid lapping at the glass sides with each movement of Scorpius’ wrist. “I was right!” Scorpius crowed, making Albus blink. “I produced just a touch more, but there’s not much in it, to be honest.” He carefully placed the two phials on the floor beside his chair and scribbled some more notes on his parchment. “Obviously, we'll have to repeat the experiment to get reliable results. Oh! Perhaps I could write a paper! What sort of journal—”

“No! My spunk is not being written about in a bloody journal! I don't want sketchy old paedos getting off on my… my… juices.”

Scorpius wrinkled his nose. “Ugh, Al, must you be so graphic? And I highly doubt people are scouring academic journals for their jollies.”

“You would,” Albus grumbled, but Scorpius didn’t rise to it.

“Right, I produced the most, and I was the fastest, but you possibly shot the furthest, not that it’s a competition, of course… hmm.” He paused and tapped the end of the quill on his lip. His eyes didn’t leave the parchment on his lap. “But it wasn’t really a clear measure of distance so… how about we test that next time? Yes? Okay.” He scratched something else down, then looked up and pinned Albus with a bright smile. “Can you tell me what you were thinking about while you were, you know? Did the magazine help? I saw you had your eyes shut, so perhaps you used some tried and tested thoughts? And what pushed you over the edge? I admit it took me a little longer than usual, I imagine stage fright must have been an influencing factor but I’m sure that will improve as we become more comfortable doing this. I don’t suppose you took notice of my technique? No? I’m open to any pointers you may have…”

Albus stopped listening. He was finding it hard to move past next time. Scorpius wanted to do this again. And not just once, but multiple times by the sound of it. What the fuck had he agreed to? Somehow he’d found himself with a starring role in Scorpius’ latest obsession and he wasn’t entirely sure how he felt about it. On the one hand, wanking was good. He would never say no to more of that. On the other, though, was the uncomfortable realisation that maybe he had some ever-so-slightly non-platonic feelings about his best friend, and having to wank in front of him, multiple times, was unlikely to make those feelings go away.

“Al? Did you listen to anything I said?”

Shit. This drifting off in the middle of conversations was starting to become habitual. “Uh, yeah. Lots of questions. Look, I’m really tired and I want a shower before bed, so can we maybe talk about this tomorrow? I’m just gonna…” He stood up and checked everything was done up and nothing was peeping out. “I’ll meet you back at the dorm, yeah?” He just needed a little time to adjust, that was all. He wasn’t running away, he thought, as he fled through the door into the dark corridor beyond.

“Wait, Al!” Scorpius dashed after him, his satchel slung over one shoulder. It looked so innocent; no one would ever suspect it hid a porno mag and a notebook full of wank statistics. “Is everything okay?” he asked as he drew alongside him.

Albus could really have done with a few moments to himself to get his thoughts in order before Scorpius’ interrogation, but he wasn’t about to tell Scorpius to fuck off leave him alone. “It’s just a lot to take in,” he muttered, hoping that Scorpius would take pity on him and not force him to explain in any further detail what was currently going through his head.

For a moment there was nothing but the muted sound of their footsteps echoing through the empty corridors.

“I know,” Scorpius said quietly. “But thank you. I’m aware that I can get a tad carried away sometimes, and I want you to know that I appreciate you accommodating my latest fancy. I wouldn’t want to do it with anyone else.” He smiled shyly, glancing at Albus from beneath his pale lashes before training his gaze firmly on the floor.

Albus’ breath hitched and narrowly avoided tripping over his own feet. Scorpius had spoken so softly, it was almost as if he didn’t want Albus to hear. But he did hear, and it almost sounded like… But, no. He must have misheard. Before Albus could reply or seek any clarification, though, they reached the entrance to the Slytherin common room, and Scorpius darted inside.

———

Scorpius didn’t bring it up again for a few nights, and Albus wasn’t sure if he was relieved about that or not. That night in the empty classroom would be etched into his brain for all eternity and he hadn’t been able to stop thinking about it for more than a few seconds at a time, which was increasingly inconvenient since every time he remembered the look on Scorpius’ face after he came, he got hard. He’d spent days shuffling between classrooms with his satchel or a thick book, or whatever he had to hand clutched in front of his groin. It was getting to the point that people were giving him strange looks, as if he should be pitied for being unable to carry anything properly.

The frustrating thing was, in addition to his complete silence on the matter, Scorpius didn’t really act differently. It was enough to make Albus wonder whether he’d imagined the whole traumatic evening. He’d half expected Scorpius to assault him with questions the second he woke up on Sunday morning, but no, he just theorised about the optimal number of sausages in a sausage sandwich (two, sliced in half), and then updated Albus on his latest plan for O.W.L. revision. At the very least, Albus had expected a bit of awkwardness, maybe some stilted conversation and shy, knowing smiles, but Scorpius had breezed out of bed like he usually did, a ray of sunshine in their gloomy dormitory.

Well, okay, maybe there had been a slight change because it definitely seemed like Scorpius was touching him more. Not in a sexual way (unfortunately… or fortunately. Albus still couldn’t make up his mind), but casual brushes of his hand when they passed things between each other, or the press of Scorpius’ leg against his as they worked side-by-side, a hand on his shoulder as Scorpius leant in to whisper something to him in class. Maybe they’d always touched this much, though. Maybe it just felt like more because now Albus was mentally cataloguing each and every one, guiltily filing the sensation away for later.

He wished he knew how was Scorpius acting so normally. How could Scorpius chat to him about Herbology and Professor Longbottom’s socks when they each knew what the other looked like when they came? As the week progressed, Albus found it increasingly difficult to be around Scorpius. Every time he looked at him, he saw his flushed face, heard his rough, panting breath and the soft groan he released as he came all over his hand. He could barely be near him without blushing; there were all these thoughts and feelings swirling around in his head that he’d never allowed time and space for before. And the whole time—the whole fucking time—Scorpius carried on as if nothing had changed. He just wanted Scorpius to say something, to acknowledge what happened so Albus could be certain it’d not been some hyper-realistic wank fantasy, and maybe, possibly, hopefully arrange the next time Scorpius had spoken of so enthusiastically.

He couldn’t stop staring at Scorpius, trying to work out if these new feelings meant he fancied him, or whether it was just the situation that made him associate weird feelings with his best friend. Was he gay? Did the fact that it was Scorpius’ face that plagued his dreams and featured in all his fantasies mean that he liked him more than as a friend? He wished he could remember whether these feelings had always been there or whether they were inspired by recent events. He needed to talk to someone, but without Scorpius, he was left with his older brother (who’d probably laugh at him), his nosey cousin (who would probably try and interfere somehow), or his parents, and it wasn’t exactly the sort of thing he wanted to talk to them about. “Hey Mum, I wanked with my best friend and now I don’t know whether I fancy him or if I’m just projecting previously undiscovered gay feelings onto him. Any advice?” Yeah, that conversation was never happening.

———

It was Friday evening when Scorpius finally broke his silence on that night. It hadn’t even been a full week, and yet Albus felt like he’d been struggling with his internal crisis for months. However, despite having waited anxiously for any hint from Scorpius that they actually had wanked together, and that it hadn’t all been in his head, Albus found he was totally unequipped for the reality of Scorpius talking about it. Perhaps if Scorpius hadn’t decided to broach the subject as they settled down in the library to get in a couple of hours of study after dinner he’d have felt better prepared.

“So, I was thinking,” Scorpius began, dropping into the chair beside Albus with an armful of books. “I don’t know if you remember, but last week I mentioned something about maybe trying another, um… experiment? Just for, you know… personal improvement and what have you.” He looked up and smiled at Albus, his tone light and breezy as if he were asking for Albus’ thoughts on the recent bad weather rather than proposing a new wank session.

Albus stilled. This was it. He carefully schooled his expression to try and hide how desperately eager he felt. “Um, yeah? I think… I think I recall something like that. Why? Do you…” he said, managing to keep all but the slightest quiver of excitement out of his voice. He clasped his hands together in his lap to keep himself from grabbing Scorpius and dragging him into the nearest empty classroom.

“…want to try again? Yes!” Scorpius gasped and pressed a hand to his mouth, seemingly startled by his own enthusiasm. “Only if you do, of course,” he added hastily as his cheeks turned blotchy and red.

Albus opened his mouth to agree, but nothing but a croaky squeak came out so he cleared his throat and quickly nodded his head.

Scorpius’ answering grin set off a herd of Hippogriffs stampeding through Albus’ chest and he silently cursed his inconvenient feeling. “Great! So, um, Saturday night again?”

“Yep, mm-hmm, yeah, totally, that works,” Albus replied, going for nonchalant, but the continued head-nodding was probably making him look a little odd. He really should stop that soon; Scorpius was starting to look concerned.

“Great,” Scorpius said, with a firm nod of his head.

“Great.” Albus quickly turned his attention back to his schoolwork before he could say something horrifically embarrassing. He grabbed a book from the pile he’d gathered and flicked through the pages in the vain hope he’d recall what he was supposed to be studying. It was impossible to concentrate, though. His mind wouldn’t keep from speculating about Saturday night and Scorpius’ presence at his side was not helping. When they left the library almost two hours later, Albus couldn’t remember a single thing he’d read.

———

The classroom was exactly how they’d left it, with the chairs angled towards the desk at the front. A fresh layer of dust had already partially covered the footprints and scuff marks they’d left behind, and it was clear no one had been in the room in the last week. He felt an odd fondness for the room and it was strange to see it still looking so abandoned when he’d visited it every night in his dreams and played out innumerable fantasies here within the safety of his head. It was reassuring to see that no one else had entered the space, though; it helped to soothe his rampant nerves and secure the notion in his head that this was their own private space.

Like last time, Scorpius strode into the centre of the room and scanned the area. He clearly had something specific in mind, but Albus had no idea what it was. He’d spent all week imagining every possible scenario, but now he was here, he couldn’t remember a single thing.

“I thought we’d try something a little different this time,” Scorpius said, turning to face Albus. He was chewing his bottom lip and his eyes kept flicking between the floor and Albus.

“Yeah?” Albus replied carefully. He frantically tried to think of what else Scorpius might want to do. Did he mean something different from wanking? His eyes grew wider and wider as he scrolled through activities that were similar to, but not quite the same as wanking. He surely couldn’t mean… Or…?

“It’s… well. You remember how it appeared that you came further? I thought we could measure that this time, if that’s okay with you?”

Ooohhhh. Some of the tightness in Albus’ chest loosened, but there was also a pang of something resembling disappointment. “Um, yeah, sure.”

“Excellent. I’m not entirely certain what the most accurate way to measure would be. If we sit down like last time then… no, that won’t work. Maybe standing up? But then we’d have to account for trajectory and our height difference would surely play a part… Oh, what about—”

“What about…” Albus cut in before he could stop himself, and then snapped his mouth shut. Scorpius stared at him expectantly and he felt he had no choice but to plough on so he focused on the ripped tapestry on the wall over Scorpius’ shoulder. “What if… we both stand at one end of that desk when we’re ready to, you know, let loose, and then you can measure who’s spunk landed furthest away.”

He could feel Scorpius’ eyes boring into him. “What?” he muttered, shooting Scorpius a suspicious glare.

“Nothing… I just. It’s nice that you’ve given it some thought.” Scorpius’ proud smile instantly melted some of the tension Albus was carrying.

Albus flushed and shifted his glare to the dusty flagstones. “It’s just common sense,” he mumbled with a shrug, toeing a weird mark on the stone.

Together, they cleared the desk of dust and then spent a little time tidying up the rest of the room, Scourgifying dust from every surface and shifting the extra furniture to the edges of the room. Albus wasn’t sure if it was a delay tactic or them subconsciously claiming the space as their own, but he didn’t complain. When there was nothing left to clean, Scorpius produced another magazine from his bag of supplies and Albus felt some of his trepidation creep back in and settle in a solid lump in his gut.

Scorpius propped the magazine up on a smaller desk he’d dragged between the two chairs, since the large teacher’s desk now had a different purpose. Albus wondered whether he should mention to Scorpius that there was no point bringing jazz mags along since he’d been hard since setting foot in the dusty classroom. In fact, he’d been in a near-constant state of arousal since their last session. In the end, though, he held his tongue; it would no doubt open himself up to a whole new line of questioning from Scorpius, and he wasn’t quite ready to admit how much this new thing between them was affecting him.

Albus eyed the setup, wondering whether he’d be better sitting down or whether he should just stand near the head of the desk from the outset. He really didn’t think it would take him very long and he didn’t want to embarrass himself by coming too soon.

“If you’re worried about the height advantage, you could put a couple of books on the floor to stand on,” Scorpius said with a chuckle as he settled into the same chair he’d claimed last time.

“Fuck off, Scorp. I don’t need any help kicking your arse,” Albus growled, but it lacked any real heat. Their height difference was a constant source of teasing between them. He stomped over to his chair and whipped his dick out before he could think too long about it. He’d worn jogging bottoms this time, so he didn’t have to faff about with buttons or worry about the jagged edges of zips.

He closed his eyes and curled his fingers around his growing erection, sliding the foreskin over the flushed head before pulling it back again, enjoying the slow drag of his fingers over his silky flesh. It only took a matter of seconds before he was at full hardness, his dick hard and heavy as he thrust up into his fist, a slow dribble of precome providing the only lubrication. He already felt like he was skating dangerously close to the edge after spending the week semi-aroused so he wrapped a hand around the base, cupping his balls as he did, and tried to slow his movements. He loosened his fist, his touch now feather-light as he slid his hand up and down. He was very aware of Scorpius only a metre away from him and even over the sound of his own fevered panting, he could make out the rustle of fabric as Scorpius worked himself, could hear his shaky breaths and whimpers, a softly muttered Lubrio. He fumbled for his wand and quickly cast the charm himself, gasping at the cool sensation of the conjured lube when he replaced his hand around his length.

There was no holding it back now. He stood on trembling, unsteady legs and shuffled towards the desk, one hand wrapped around his aching cock, as his joggers inched down his legs, making the whole process much more difficult than it needed to be. He could feel Scorpius’ eyes on him, tracking his ungainly progress, but rather than feeling humiliated, Albus felt emboldened. He straightened his posture and savoured the way his dick felt in his hand, jutting proudly over the end of the desk. He screwed his eyes shut and worked his fist faster, certain that Scorpius was watching him and relishing the sense of power it gave him. Heat coiled in his core, slowly spreading outward as he raced towards completion. He glanced over his shoulder, needing absolute confirmation of his audience and was rewarded with the sight of Scorpius, pink-cheeked and wide-eyed, lower lip caught between his teeth as he stared with singular focus at Albus. One hand was fisted around his slick cock, the head a beautiful deep pink as it slid in and out of his hand. With his other hand, Scorpius tugged roughly at his balls, rolling the delicate skin between his fingers and making Albus light-headed with the sudden wave of lust that crashed over him. He groaned loudly as his orgasm swept through him, glistening white globs of come spattering over the tabletop as he shuddered through his release.

He kept a white-knuckled grip on the edge of the desk to keep from stumbling back as he caught his breath, the last shivers of his orgasm prickling across his skin. Before he could recover enough to make it back to his chair without wobbling, Scorpius slammed into his side, jostling him out of the way, his fist moving in a blur over his dick. Albus didn’t step too far out of the way though; they were stood so close that Albus could feel the heat radiating out from Scorpius’ body. His face was damp with perspiration, fine blond hairs sticking to his forehead and falling in front of his eyes, and Albus was struck by the sudden urge to smooth the hair off his friends face. Maybe it was the heady scent of sex in the air, or the lingering thread of his orgasm but his hand was moving before he could stop it, brushing the fine strands from Scorpius’ face and sweeping them up off his forehead. Scorpius stared at him in surprise, his grey eyes stormy and dark with arousal, and then his eyelids fluttered shut and he let out an almost pained groan as he painted the desk with his release.

They stood, unmoving, at the end of the desk, Scorpius sucking in deep breaths as Albus stared dumbly at the desk and tried to work out what on Earth had possessed him to run his fingers through Scorpius’ hair. Fingers that were sticky with a mixture of come and lube. He absently wiped the offending hand on his shirt and hastily pulled his joggers up.

“I think I came furthest,” Scorpius announced as he leant forward to scrutinising the rapidly cooling puddles of come.

Albus’ competitive spirit flared in his chest, pushing his embarrassment aside. “What? No way! That’s mine, that blob.”

“Don’t be ridiculous!” Scorpius cried. “Look! You can tell by the trajectory that it came from me, see.” He mimed come spurting from the rough area of where his dick had been only moments earlier.

“That’s crap. You were all over the place and you did this hunching over thing as you came so there’s no way you got that far. You’re lucky you didn’t get any in your eye with all the flailing you were doing.”

“I did not flail!” He stamped his foot and folded his arms across his chest, clamping his hands under his armpits in a very obvious attempt to stop waving them around.

Albus bit back a snigger, but broke into full-on laughter when he saw the corner of Scorpius’ mouth twitch up in amusement.

“Can you imagine having to go see Pomfrey with come in my eye? Oh, Merlin,” Scorpius said between giggles.

After recovering from their brief bout of hysterical laughter, Scorpius grabbed his notebook from his bag and started jotting down whatever information he thought was pertinent to his investigation. Albus sat down heavily in his chair and closed his eyes, while he waited for Scorpius to finish up whatever he was doing. He knew Scorpius would let him know if he had any questions so he let his mind wander. His sated body felt heavy, exhaustion tugging at his limbs and he was looking forward to a shower and then an early night.

“I suppose I’ll let you have that one,” Scorpius said jolting Albus from his doze. He didn’t even remember dozing off. “Hmmm. It’s a shame everything is all mingled together because I won’t be able to measure individual volume,” he muttered, casting a long overdue Scourgify on the desk top. “What’s your refractory period like?”

“Excuse me?” Albus squeaked, suddenly fully awake.

“I’m just wondering whether I have time to make a start on that reading for Potions on Monday.”

“What?”

“If we measure volume tonight, I want to make sure you have adequate time to recover, which, additionally gives me the opportunity to test whether our refractory periods are similar, and I can cross check against last weeks results to see if we deplete at the same rate. Barnaby said he was able to come three times in one night! Do you think that’s possible? I don’t know about you but I’m pretty pooped just from the once.” He chuckled nervously and ran a hand through his hair, frowning in confusion when his fingers caught on a sticky knot in his fringe.

Albus cleared his throat and looked away, suddenly reminded of the come-sticky fingers he’d assaulted Scorpius’ hair with. “Wait, you brought homework with you?” he asked.

“Obviously. You never know when you’re going to find yourself with a spare five minutes to revise, Albus. In case you’ve forgotten, it’s our O.W.L.s year, and you can never be too prepared,” he admonished.

“Well I don’t know how long it’ll be, but I didn’t bring any homework,” he replied mulishly.

“Oh, not to worry. I’ve brought a few more magazines so you’re welcome to flick through them. Perhaps they’ll aid your recovery,” he added with a cheeky grin that sent sparks racing through Albus’ veins. Maybe he wouldn’t need long to recover after all.

Unwilling to let on how keen he was to go again, Albus rolled his eyes leant back with his arms folded. “Whatever, Scorp. I—” His reply caught in his throat when Scorpius gleefully thrust a small bundle of glossy magazines at him.

“What the… Where are you getting these from?” He flinched as the busty woman on the cover of the top magazine gyrated around a pole and stuck out her exceptionally round, jiggly arse.

“Oh, um. Well, I sort of borrowed the first one from Barnaby—he’s really not very good at hiding things, you know—and, well, I was flicking through it the other day and there’s an owl-order address in the back so I sent off for a few more. For variety.”

“You owl-ordered porn to school?!”

“You’d rather I got it delivered to home and then ask Father to forward it?”

“No, I… but… what?”

“If you’ve a better idea, then I’d be happy to hear it.”

“No… it’s… fine, whatever.” Albus huffed out a sigh. He couldn’t really argue—Scorpius made a very good point. Merlin, the thought of Mr Malfoy having even the slightest inkling of what they were up to was enough to scare any erections away for good.

“They’re very discreet, you know,” Scorpius continued. “They disguise them as Muggle magazines, usually about cars or furniture, or some other curiosity.”

Albus’ brain instantly supplied him with every instance he’d ever seen someone receive a Muggle magazine over breakfast and he paled. Suddenly, James’ obsession with Muggle interior design made a lot more sense. Fuck. No wonder he’d been so snippy and evasive when Albus had asked to look at one.

“And they have such a wide range of titles too—things to suit every palate. It’s really quite the eye-opener. You’ll have to take a look at what they stock if what I bought doesn’t do it for you.”

Merlin, was he ever going to shut up? Albus thought helplessly, sinking into his chair. How had Scorpius suddenly become so knowledgeable about this stuff? He felt like a naive little first year by comparison. “I’m fine,” he mumbled, wishing the ground would open up. He was a little curious, though… Perhaps he could take a little peek… “Maybe I’ll take a quick look. Just to, you know, see what all the fuss is about.”

“Excellent!” Scorpius grinned, looking far too pleased with himself. “Oh, you’d best take this too, just in case,” he said, passing Albus a small glass jar. At Albus’ obvious confusion, he added, with a highly unnecessary wiggle of his eyebrows: “To catch the evidence.”

Albus would have Avada Kedavra’d himself on the spot if it was possible.

When Scorpius turned his attention back to his Potions textbook, Albus took a first tentative look at the selection of magazines in his hands, fanning them out like a pornographic deck of cards. There were six altogether; three prominently featured very well-endowed women on the cover, striking slightly different poses, but all bending and squeezing and pushing things together that, in Albus’ opinion, would be best left separate. ENGORGIO the covers proclaimed in bold, chunky typeset. The Wizarding World’s Premier Adult Publication! Satisfaction Guaranteed! Albus snorted and chucked them to one side. Of the remaining three, one featured a person in a very complicated-looking outfit with more buckles than leather and he quickly tossed that to the side too. Maybe another time… but not right now, not with Scorpius sitting right next to him. There was a man in the centre of the fifth magazine, a scantily-clad woman draped over each arm. He reminded Albus a lot of Barnaby with his ‘smug twat’ face, so that put it automatically in the ‘no’ pile. Which left the sixth magazine. This one featured a couple of shirtless guys on the cover, and they looked kind of normal, like the sort of blokes you wouldn’t mind hanging out with; not twattish like fake-Barnaby.

As he started to casually flick through the magazine, Scorpius emitted a strangled gasp at his side, but when he looked over, Scorpius was staring intently at his book; albeit with bright pink ears. The magazine, WANDLUST!, was full of men in various states of undress and an eye-opening variety of poses; some of them didn’t look much older than him. His attention, though, was caught by a skinny man with sandy hair halfway through the magazine. His pale skin glowed brightly in comparison to the olive skin of the dark-haired man he was knelt before, and there was something about it... Albus squinted at the image, bringing the details out of focus and he could almost imagine it was…Fuck. It looked like him and Scorpius. He was caught off guard by a wave of arousal and the speed at which his dick hardened was mortifying. He shifted awkwardly in his chair and crossed one leg over the other to shield the obvious tenting from Scorpius who was still focused on his schoolwork. Shit. He started to mentally scroll through a series of unsexy thoughts to tamp down the raging hard-on in his pants—Flobberworms, Granny Weasley’s underwear drying on the line, Hagrid’s damp beard—but then he remembered that Scorpius actually wanted him to come again, and the sooner he came in the little jar for Scorpius, the sooner he could go back to the dorm, hide in his bed, and try to erase the evening from his memory.

Albus slowly brought his leg down so both feet were flat on the floor, and then carefully eased his legs apart so as to not draw unnecessary attention to himself. With the hand that wasn’t supporting the magazine, he palmed himself through his trousers, once again glad of his decision to wear joggers this evening. They were so much roomier than the jeans he usually wore; the fabric much softer and more forgiving. He gripped his shaft tighter, biting back a moan as his hips bucked up of their own accord to chase the friction of his hand. Merlin, how was he this hard already? He closed his eyes, relishing the feel of his hand through the fabric, wondering whether he should shove a hand down his pants and be done with it or attempt to draw it out, when a dull thud quickly followed by a gasp gave him pause.

He glanced to the side and found Scorpius watching him with unabashed wonder. He froze, momentarily unsure of what to do. Despite what they’d been up to recently, part of his brain still screamed at him to take his hand off his dick and pretend like nothing strange was happening, but… Scorpius didn’t look like he wanted him to stop, in fact, he looked to be very invested in the proceedings. Hesitantly, he started to move his hand again, pressing down on his cock through the material of his trousers, squeezing the shaft, tugging at his balls. It was odd how much he enjoyed the feeling of Scorpius’ gaze upon him as he pleasured himself. He’d never thought himself as much of an exhibitionist before, but after tonight, he thought he might have to rethink that; it made him feel important, attractive, wanted.

He continued to rub a hand over his bulge, spreading his legs a little wider now he had an audience. He imagined that it was the blond in the magazine touching him, mouthing him through the material. He could practically feel the heat of his breath, the wetness of his tongue, the firmness of his touch. He closed his eyes and in his mind, the sandy, blond hair lightened until it was almost white, the texture smoothing out until the strands became silky soft. He let the magazine slip to the floor as he slid a hand beneath his waistband, shivering delightedly at the touch of his fingers on his straining erection. He stroked himself a few time, slow and playful, as he continued to picture the blond between his legs. His thighs were already starting to twitch and tremble so he tugged his trousers down, hooking them beneath his balls. He swirled his hand over the flushed head, gathering precome and slicking it down his length—he knew he could just grab his wand and conjure some lube, but rampaging Erumpents couldn’t have forced him to release the hold he had on his dick right now.

He felt his orgasm approaching, and he had just enough presence of mind to scrabble around for the small glass jar, before his orgasm tore through him. He hunched over, milking himself into the jar, no matter how ridiculous it felt, because it was what Scorpius wanted. He stayed like that, curled over his lap, as he waited for the tremors to subside, his breathing ragged even when his heart rate had slowed and his chest had stopped heaving…

…but then he realised that it wasn’t his breathing he could hear. Scorpius. He’d almost forgotten about him.

Scorpius’ eyes were squeezed shut, his mouth hanging open, his cheeks an angry red as he bucked desperately into his fist. He sounded like he was nearing the edge already, but Albus hadn’t even noticed him wanking. He whimpered, his face scrunched up in something that could have been ecstasy or agony. His legs were spread wide and Albus realised with a start that the fingers of one of one hand had slipped behind his balls, thrusting into the cleft of his arse. Merlin, was he fingering himself? Albus’ hole clenched in solidarity. He’d never really thought about touching there before. He’d heard about it, and he’d grazed the soft, forbidden skin behind his bollocks on the odd occasion, but he’d never sought it out nor slipped his fingers further back. He really was a naive, blushing first year.

All of a sudden, Scorpius withdrew his hand and reached down to the ground, feeling around for the jar. Before he could stop himself, Albus had darted forwards, falling to his knees in front of Scorpius and grabbing the jar for him.

“Here,” he murmured, pressing the jar into Scorpius’ hand.

Scorpius’ eyes snapped open. He looked to be about to speak, but when he opened his mouth, Albus’ name tumbled over his lips in a low, throaty groan. He wrapped his fingers around the jar, trapping Albus’ hand against the glass as his release splashed into the small container.

Albus couldn’t think or speak. He barely heard anything that Scorpius said as they cleaned up the room and removed all trace of their activities. He knew he’d be hearing nothing but the sound of his name on Scorpius’ lips as he came for all eternity and he didn’t care.

———

After that night, it was as if a dam had been breached. Without any sort of verbal agreement, they began to meet regularly. Initially, it was just every Saturday in the abandoned classroom that apparently no one else in the school seemed to know about, and which was steadily becoming cleaner and more comfortable as they made it their own. But they soon added Friday nights into their routine, as the allure of O.W.L. revision wasn’t any match for the temptation of a shared wank. And then Wednesday sessions become something of a regular thing too. Albus was sure his school work must be suffering, but as it hadn’t come to the point where his teachers were threatening to write home to his parents, he couldn’t find it in himself to care. How could he when two or three nights a week, Scorpius was coming up with new and exciting ideas for them to ‘test’.

Scorpius had an ever-growing list of things he wanted to try and a growing library of materials from which to source ideas. Albus couldn’t even pretend to be surprised; Scorpius always threw himself into his obsessions. He hoped there was some sort of loyalty card system with owl-order company Scorpius was using though, because he surely had to be burning a hole through his allowance—what if Mr Malfoy wanted to know what his son was blowing his money on? It didn’t bear thinking about.

Not only did they have Scorpius’ long list of experiments to work through, but Scorpius also insisted on doing everything more than once (“Results must be reproducible, Al, otherwise what’s the point?”). Scorpius kept numerous charts in his notebook that made little to no sense. They tested distance several times to see what effect different positions and heights had, and whether how many times they’d already come made any difference. They test who can get off the fastest (Albus, almost every time), who can keep going for the longest (Albus didn’t stand a chance staving off his orgasm with Scorpius beside him). One week, Scorpius suggested they try blindfolds to see if that made any difference to their results, and then another week they repeated all the experiments they’d done so far but without porn (Albus still hadn’t told Scorpius he rarely needed it anyway). After a few weeks, Scorpius began introducing dildos, cockrings, and other toys he’d apparently bought from the same owl-order place—it was getting to the point where the post owls were making Albus hard just from imagining the things Scorpius was having delivered. Then Scorpius decided they needed to repeat everything in different locations—the shower, a hidden alcove behind a tapestry (not anything Albus wanted to relive), outside—there was a particularly memorable session in the shelter of one of the Quidditch stands, where Scorpius had told him that the Ravenclaw team would be coming to practice in fifteen minutes because he wanted to know how easy it was to perform under time pressure. Albus rapidly learnt that he did not work well under stress and now also had to live with the knowledge that he’d flashed the Ravenclaw seeker with his semi-hard dick… and the boy had looked intrigued more than horrified.

And throughout everything—all of their experiments, no matter what or where—Scorpius carried around those stupid phials and recorded their ‘amounts’ whenever their fluids hadn’t mixed.

Albus soon suspected that Scorpius was just running through a list of personal fantasies rather than basing his proposed activities purely on intellectual curiosity. He had stopped being surprised by Scorpius’ creativity after a couple of weeks and just went with it—it wasn’t like it was a hardship to wank, and it was nothing he wouldn’t have been doing by himself anyway—although with a lot less flair. Albus had always been more of a ‘get the job done’ masturbator, whereas Scorpius was apparently much more adventurous. It was rather eye-opening discovering just how much he enjoyed Scorpius being in charge, though. He’d never had much cause to think too deeply about that part of him, it was hard to deny the shiver that rippled through him when Scorpius started ordering him around; he issued instructions with an aristocratic confidence that didn’t allow for the thought that his words wouldn’t be heeded, and Albus loved it. Once he’d realised that about himself, it made it even harder to pay attention in class because as soon as Scorpius told him to fetch ingredients or a piece apparatus, his cock twitched in interest and he had to suppress a shudder.

Despite Scorpius’ tendency to take control—and Albus’ willingness to let him—Scorpius always made sure Albus was okay and checked he was comfortable with what they were doing. This was partly the reason why Albus kept his mouth shut and refused to admit his true feelings to Scorpius; surely Scorpius would have said something to him if he felt anything more than platonic friendship towards Albus—the boy had no filter!

So Albus continued to take part in Scorpius’ experiments and continued to ignore the feelings that grew and became more and more difficult to push away.

One thing that remained constant throughout all of their experimentation, was the very limited physical contact between them. There had been a few glancing touches and lingering stares, but nothing more. It was the one boundary they’d never crossed, despite being in almost constant contact while fully clothed and surrounded by people during the day. In fact, there was rarely a moment when Scorpius wasn’t within reach, and more often than not, some part of their bodies touched—a hand on the arm, one foot rested lightly on the other, thighs touching at the dinner table in the Great Hall—but alone, with their dicks out, touching felt too intimate.

Albus’ fingers burned with the need to touch everywhere his eyes had already mapped, but the last thing he wanted to do was ruin the delicate balance between them. So he kept his hands to himself to ensure Scorpius would know he wasn’t reading too much into their interactions. It didn’t do anything to stop his own heart and head from getting carried away, though. Every time Albus took himself in hand in the privacy of his own bed, it was to images of Scorpius—sometimes spread out beneath him, with Albus in control for once, but more often it was to fantasies of Scorpius doing to him everything they’d done to themselves.

But then, after over two months of meeting with increasing frequency, everything changed.

It was a usual Friday night and they were trying to squeeze in a little bit of school work before moving on to more pleasurable pursuits. O.W.L’s were fast approaching so they could no longer ignore revision. Scorpius usually gave Albus little hints of his plans for their sessions, or even told him outright what he was planning while he jotted down notes in his now almost-full notebook, but this time he’d said nothing. It was difficult to concentrate on making flashcards for Herbology with his mind turning over all the possibilities. Every time he thought he had a grasp on how Scorpius’ mind worked, the boy was able to surprise him with his creativity so he truly had no idea what to expect from the evening’s activities. Scorpius was more restless than normal, which in turn was making Albus feel restless because it meant Scorpius was nervous about bringing something up with him and so was overthinking it.

Albus gathered up the small pile of cards he’d spent the week working on and shuffled them into a neat stack before fanning them out for Scorpius’ approval. “Here, I’m done with my flashcards.” Each one featured a lifelike sketch of a plant along with labels for key identifying features and a list of usages. It had been a ridiculous amount of effort for what was likely to be a small part of one exam, but drawing was one of the only things that his brain could cope with at the moment.

Scorpius glanced up at them, his lips twitching into the briefest flash of a smile. “They look great, Al,” he muttered. It wasn’t exactly the enthusiastic praise he’d been hoping for, especially considering how much work he’d put into them and that it was for the benefit of both of them. His stomach soured as he watched Scorpius worry the corner of the book in his lap. Was Scorpius planning on calling everything off? He’d known this day would happen eventually. Of course there was an end date on their activities; once Scorpius exhausted a subject, he always moved on to the next obsession. All he’d wanted to do was work on his wanking technique and check how it differed from Albus’, and they’d more than done that in recent months. It was amazing it had gone on for so long at all. Albus knew he had been wanking on borrowed time, but still, the realisation that it was all about to come crashing to a halt stung and he wished he could ignore the pain. How could he continue as normal, knowing exactly how Scorpius liked to touch himself, how fast he liked to move his hand, how much he enjoyed experimenting with different kinks and toys. How would he be able to cope when Scorpius finally met someone and did all these things with them… together rather than side-by-side.

Albus knew he had to say something, even if it was just that he wanted them to continue what they were doing, at least until after their exams. Maybe then he’d have time to think about whether his feelings were real or just conveniently projected on the only person he’d ever gotten remotely close to, sexually. He would regret it forever if he let this fester inside him. Scorpius was his best friend, he wouldn’t laugh at Albus or abandon him.

“I’ve been thinking.” Scorpius pinned Albus with an earnest stare, his fingers wrapped around the edges of the book he was reading. “About… you know.”

Albus nodded his head slowly and swallowed once. Twice. So much for speaking up; his tongue was frozen in his mouth. He clasped the flashcards, shuffling, aligning the edges, then shuffling again, over and over.

“We been doing stuff for a while now—” Scorpius’ cheeks were red and blotchy. It was both ridiculous and adorable how flustered he got talking about wanking considering how he was once they got down to it, “—and I’ve realised we’re missing out on a whole area of study.”

Albus’ ears pricked and he sat up a little straighter. This was not how he’d imagined the conversation going. He nodded again to urge Scorpius to continue talking since his tongue was still refusing to cooperate.

Thankfully Scorpius took the cue. “I thought, perhaps, that maybe… weshouldtoucheachother.

Albus could do nothing but blink as the neat stack of cards fell from his hands. “You want us to what now?”

Scorpius nodded frantically. “It’s just… we’ve done all these things on ourselves, but what’s to say we’ve not been cheating? How can we truly measure something like how long it takes to come if we’re doing it ourselves? For all I know you’re, I don’t know, not touching yourself right to make yourself last longer… or maybe jerking your hips to make your semen fly further. I want my notes to be accurate, that’s all.” Scorpius picked at the toe of one sock and glanced up at Albus from beneath his lashes.

“You want to… for accuracy.” Albus took a moment to process what Scorpius was proposing. He wouldn’t last long at all with Scorpius’ hand on his cock… but would he care? He felt a little foolish for assuming Scorpius wanted to end things when instead it seemed everything was about to get a lot more interesting. “Okay.” He shrugged, tamping down the giddy excitement that was pulsing through him. Scorpius wanted to touch his dick!

“Brilliant!” He cast his gaze around the dormitory. “Shall we get started? We could do it in here with the curtains closed and strong Muffliato?”

“What?”

“The you know,” he made an obscene gesture. “I want to know how long I can last when it’s not my own hand doing all the work. I’m led to believe by wizarding media that stamina is a key skill in the bedroom department, so I’d like to know how I measure up.”

“Now? Here?”

Scorpius nodded. “Unless you have any objections?”

“Um, no? O-okay.” Albus wiped his horribly sweaty palms in his thighs. This was really happening… but first: logistics. “Do you want to, um… be the doer or the, um… do-ee?”

“Oh! I didn’t think that far ahead.” He chuckled, and dragged a hand through his hair, smoothing it into place. “We could try at the same time? That sounds fair, doesn’t it?”

With a vague plan decided, they tidied up their schoolwork and drew the curtains around the bed. Albus added a temporary sticking charm where the curtains met on the off chance that any of their dorm mates wandered in and tried to peer into his bed (it had never happened before, but he felt safer doing it just in case.) Scorpius then cast a Muffliato and conjured a small warmly glowing orb, positioning it above them in the centre of the drapes.

They sat and stared at each other for a few minutes. Albus twisted his wand in his hands. The small bumps on the handle helped to ground him as he silently counted each node.

“So I guess we should…” Scorpius started. He gestured toward the head of the bed so Albus shuffled back and to the side to make space. The beds weren’t designed for two teenage boys to sit comfortably next to each other, and Albus almost fell out as Scorpius jostled him. One look at Scorpius’ now-open trousers stifled the complaint on his lips though. He hastily followed suit, while willing his growing erection to calm down. He was under no illusion that he’d last long at all, but he wanted to at least feel Scorpius’ hand on his dick before he jizzed everywhere.

“Let’s crack on then!” Scorpius said, the slight tremor in his voice belying the confidence of his words.

He snaked a hand through the gap between Albus’ arm and his chest, and without warning, dove straight into his boxers. Albus squawked and reflexively tried to jerk out of reach, but there was no room in the bed. Scorpius let out a shocked gasp as his fingers met with Albus’ very hard dick, but the sound was quickly overridden but the strangled groan Albus was unable to bite back as Scorpius’ cool, slender fingers curled around his length and squeezed. Merlin’s fucking beard.

Albus screwed his eyes shut and reached across to Scorpius’ groin, working by touch alone to find his way into his pants. It wasn’t easy. Not only was his brain running at diminished capacity because SCORPIUS’ HAND WAS ON HIS KNOB, but there were far too many elbows in the way.

“Hold on, just—”

“What are you—”

“Move!”

“You move!”

“Just—Merlin, fuck. Ow!”

Albus whined as Scorpius withdrew his hand with a frustrated huff. “This is impossible!” he cried. “I can’t get a proper rhythm going with you jabbing me in the ribs like that. Can’t you shift over just a little bit?”

“Yeah, sure, let me just—oh wait, that would be a NO because I’m already half off the edge of the fucking bed!” Albus snapped.

“You don’t have to be such a git about it. I was just asking.” Scorpius huffed and folded his arms across his chest, mirroring Albus’ pose.

They sat in awkward, stony silence, and Albus glared sullenly at the foot of the bed. The atmosphere not improved by the fact they both still had their trousers open. Albus was considering stuffing himself back into his pants and calling off the night as a failed experiment, when Scorpius spoke up.

“The angle was all wrong. Let’s try a different way. I refuse to be felled by the first hurdle.”

Scorpius grabbed him by the arm and moved him out of the way, then he shuffled over so he was in the centre of the headboard. Albus frowned, unsure of where it was going, but then Scorpius spread his legs and tugged him by the arm until he was nestled between them. Albus sat very still. His back was flush with Scorpius’ chest and he felt like he could feel everything. He closed his eyes and let out a shuddering breath as Scorpius wound his arms around him.

“Is this okay?” Scorpius said, his voice barely above a whisper. Albus felt the words gust through the wispy hairs at his nape and he couldn’t fight the shiver that rippled down his spine.

“Yeah.”

“Remember, the aim is to try and hold back for as long as possible. Alright?”

At Albus’ nod, he grabbed his wand off the bed and conjured a small amount of lube in the palm of his hand. “Ready?”

Albus nodded again and exhaled through pursed lips as Scorpius pulled the waistband of his boxers away from his body and slid his hand inside. The second Scorpius’ fingers curled around his cock Albus pressed back into Scorpius’ loose embrace, relishing the feel of having him all around him. The hand that wasn't busy with slow teasing strokes along his length rubbed circles into the top of his thigh. His nerve endings felt alight, every point of contact between them electrifying, and Albus tried hard to steady his breathing, so Scorpius wouldn’t know how close he was to the edge. Scorpius’ fist around him was slick and hot and he rutted upwards with every down stroke. He was so hard, so close, and he didn’t want it to stop, not now, but he needed more. Harder. Faster.

“Is that the best you can do?” he teased through gritted teeth, desperate for just a little bit more. He didn’t care about the objective anymore, he just wanted to come all over Scorpius’ perfect hand. “I thought you wanted to get me off quickly?”

Scorpius huffed out a laugh. “I’m just warming up. Pull down your pants,” he ordered gruffly, his lips tickling the shell of Albus’ ear.

Albus shuddered and rushed to comply. He shucked his boxers and trousers and kicked them towards the foot of the bed, then scooted back until he was snuggly pressed into the V of Scorpius’ legs. He felt Scorpius’ erection, hot and heavy at the base of his spine and wiggled back into it, delighting in the guttural moan that escaped Scorpius’ lips. But then Scorpius sped up his hand, adding a twist over the head on every upward stroke and Albus could no longer think anything other than more more more.

He loosened the grip he had on Albus’ hip and slid the hand down between his legs, tugging at Albus’ balls. Albus brought his feet in towards his body, spreading his legs wider and leaning his full weight against Scorpius’ chest to give him better access. It was as if his fantasies had come to life and he wasn’t sure if it was even real anymore—had he fallen asleep over his books? Scorpius’ breath was hot and ragged against the back of his neck, the sensation sending violent thrills down his spine and he clenched his fists at his side to prevent himself from turning around and pinning Scorpius to the bed. He continued to thrust up into Scorpius’ fist, chasing the tightness, greedy for everything he could get. How could anything feel so good?

The building heat in his gut spread slowly outwards, burning a path through him. He knew he wasn’t going to last much longer but he squeezed his eyes shut and tried to cling on to the feeling of weightlessness, of inevitability, for just a little bit more. Knowing the edge was fast approaching, he lifted one arm and awkwardly hooked around Scorpius, holding his head in place, while the other hand kept a vice-like grip on Scorpius’ thigh. He could feel the twitch of Scorpius’ hips as he thrust minutely against him like he wanted to move but was holding himself back. The press of his erection was unmistakable, though. It made Albus feel desired, sexy, knowing that he was responsible; Scorpius was rutting against him, had his hand around his dick, was mouthing his neck, and— oh, fuck… As Scorpius’ teeth grazed his skin, Albus was finished. His orgasm was ripped out of him and he could do nothing but hold on to Scorpius and ride it out, wave after wave of pleasure shuddering through him.

Silence stretched on as Albus came back down to Earth. The air within the curtains was thick with the scent of his release and the only sound was their heavy panting. His eyes roved about the bed—the rucked up blankets, semen-smeared sheets, oily patches of lube—and he cringed thinking about what the house-elves would make of it. An inexpertly cast Scourgify could only do so much…

“Fuck,” Albus said tilting his head back to rest on Scorpius’ shoulder. His skin still buzzed and he could feel his friend’s chest heaving in time with his own. It was soothing and helped to ground him; Scorpius was still there, still close, the world hadn’t ended the second they touched.

“Yeah,” Scorpius agreed, his voice rough. “That was… bloody brilliant!”

Albus chuckled, delighted to hear that Scorpius sounded as wrecked as he did. He canted his head to look at him and his heart lurched at the sight of Scorpius’ flushed cheeks, blissed-out grin, and bright eyes. He wanted to stay like this forever. Scorpius’ hand had, at some point, left his dick, but their bodies were still entwined, and Albus was more than happy to leave it that way. There was, however, the small matter of the experiment, and Albus didn’t want Scorpius thinking he was all take and no give. He was excited to finally have a chance to touch the dick he’d not been able to stop thinking about for weeks. He could write sonnets about that dick and very soon it was going to be in his hand. “I think I’ve got my breath back. Do you want your turn now, or…”

“Um.” Scorpius flushed and glanced off to the side. “I might need a little while to, um, recover. There’s a chance I may have accidentally… on your back…”

Albus frowned, momentarily confused about what Scorpius was wittering on about, but then he became aware of a damp patch on his t-shirt, towards the base of his spine. “Did you seriously just…”

“I’m sorry!” Scorpius squeaked, squeezing his eyes shut and dropping his forehead to Albus’ shoulder, his arms tightening around Albus’ chest. “In my defence, though, you were being very… seductive, with your movements and your noises and the way you grasped my hair and…”

Albus laughed, despite the fact that Scorpius’ continued presence at his back was already rousing his dick. “Does that mean I win?”

“Oh, shut up. No. It’s not a competition, you idiot. It’s science.” Scorpius snorted and head-butted him lightly. “But it does mean I just need a little more time to gather myself, and then… Well. Let’s just say that we have a whole new area to explore.”

A thrill ran through Albus at those words and the promise they held. He knew this time that he wasn’t imagining things; that he and Scorpius were well beyond the point of ‘normal’ friends. He wondered if they ever had been. “As long as you don’t explore it with anyone else,” he said, the high of his orgasm and the solid, reassuring warmth of Scorpius behind him filling him with some of that famed Potter bravery. Or perhaps the thought of touching Scorpius again had sent him loopy.

“Only you, Albus. It’s always been you.”

Albus twisted around in Scorpius’ arms and captured his lips in a kiss that felt all at once like coming home and jumping off the Astronomy tower. The faint gasp that Scorpius released as their lips met was quickly replaced by a soft moan. He leant into the kiss, threading his hands through Albus’ hair and tugging them both down to the bed. Their limbs tangled together and Albus decided he would endure all the embarrassment again, and more besides, knowing it would get him to this point.

====END====