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Never the Same

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The whole school was buzzing with excitement, as first days do. For Tom, the first day of Hogwarts has been nearly fifteen years. The sight of the Great Hall, so magnificient as always, reminded him of the way he marveled at the magical place that was Hogwarts, content to have such a place to be his home, compared to the dreaded Orphanage he had to grow up in. Many would feel deep nostalgia if they were in Tom's place, but Tom was not a sentimental person.

When all the students were in their seats, Mcgonagall came in with a bunch of First years. They all stood in the middle of the Great Hall, waiting to be sorted by the Hat. Tom kept a keen eye to each student being sorted, categorizing and evaluating their magical powers as well as their social status. This was the reason for his coming back to Hogwarts, after all: recruiting new members. Although the First years were far too young to be of much help, their trust and approval will help Tom gain support from their families. Also, Tom could wait a few good years until they become useful themselves, if they were proven to be magically talented. The latter case seeemed to be out of luck, as Tom reviewed all of the children; they all seemed to be pretty normal. Boring. Tom probably should look into the older ones and their families.

In the professor's aisle, Tom could see a blond, silky haired man. He must be a Malfoy, judging by the hair, Tom thought. Malfoy was definitely one of the families from whom he should get support.

As the last First year got sorted for Ravenclaw, Dumbledore stood up and clinked his glass. The magnifying charm made the clinking sound utterly loud and clear, and everyone automatically paid attention. Dumbledore smiled.

 

"Welcome, welcome, everyone. Another day of a new year begins, and I have the highest expectations for every one of you. Details will be explained by our deputy headmistress, Minerva Mcgonagall."

 

He signed to Mcgonagall, standing beside him. Mcgonagall gave everyone a curt nod.

 

"There are only two things to be in order. First, the forbidden forest is off limits, to everyone who cherish their life."

 

Typical Dumbledore, mentioning forbidden forest and death without any warnings. Tom sneered internally. He could see the confused faces of several first years. They wouldn't know just how... dangerous, Hogwarts actually was.

 

"Second, there are new professors here at Hogwarts. Mr. Riddle, would you stand up for a while?"

 

Dumbledore said, as he tilted his face slightly to see Tom. Tom gave the charming smile over which everyone except Dumbledore just swoons, and stood up. He could see half of the school already charmed by his exterior. It was the one good thing that was given from his muggle father.

 

"Hello, everyone. I will be your Transfiguration professor from now on. I look forward to meeting you all." Tom said, magnifying spell making his voice loud and clear.

 

"Thank you, Mr. Riddle. He is one of the brightest students Hogwarts has ever had. I expect nothing less than excellence from his teachings, and so should you." said Dumbledore. Tom knew it was his sign for Tom to sit down. Both Tom and Dumbledore knew that his flattering words meant nothing.

 

"Now, we have Mr. Potter. Mr. Potter?" Dumbledore looked around, searching for someone at the professor's aisle. Potter? Tom knew of the Potter family: they were famous for their wealth, and their ancestry was mostly pure-blooded. His plans for recruitment seems to have some promise, Tom thought.

 

"-Ah, yes, professor. Sorry I'm late, sir." came the voice from behind Tom. Tom turned his face to look back.

 

A boy was there, slightly wet from presumably, rain. His hair was raven black, and it was all over the place. Tom suspected its messiness was not just because of the rain. Pale, porcelain skin had a tinge of redness in his cheeks, probably because he had been running. He was wearing a dark green robe and some clothes underneath, and obviously, fashion was not his strong suit. The clothes seemed expensive, which is not surprising considering the Potter family's vast wealth, but they were wildly ill-matched. 

But the eyes. Sweet Salazar, murmured Tom. Green, big eyes with long eyelashes were there behind a round pair of spectacles. The eyes were strikingly beautiful.

Suddenly, out of nowhere, Tom felt a strong pull of arousal.

What would that face look like, with his dick in his mouth? So innocent and child-like, he would turn his beautiful eyes on Tom, cheeks flushed, with one or two tears streaming down his face out of embarassment and arousal. Tom swore under his breath. It was not like himself to have such a strong, immediate attraction: he always used sex as a means to get what he want, and nothing more. And now this was happening. How unusual.

Behind Tom was the back door to the Great Hall, which only professors and staffs could use. The Potter boy must have come through that door just now, which made the boy pant almost right next to Tom.

It was not helping with Tom's blazing arousal.

Tom gritted his teeth as Dumbledore regarded Tom's side with interest. Could Dumbledore see this?

 

"It is quite alright, Mr. Potter. Would you introduce yourself, once you take your breath?" Dumbledore said.

 

"Of course, sir. Hi, everyone- um, my name's Harry Potter. I will be teaching you Defense Against the Dark Arts." Potter said.

 

So the boy's name was Harry. Tom thought to himself, remembering what he knew of the Potters. James Potter, the Head Auror, was the Head of the Potter family, and he had heard that James had a young son who was an Auror, like his father. Because Tom did not have much interaction with the Aurors Department, he did not get to meet the son or learn more about him. Maybe Harry was James' son. But then, it meant that the boy was a former Auror- but he didn't look like he fit within the harshness and the brutality Aurors were required to experience almost daily.

And. He was the new professor for the Defense Against the Dark Arts.

Interesting.

Tom initially wanted the Defense Against the Dark Arts professorship, and he knew that the place had been vacant for several years. There was no better place for Tom to study the Dark Arts without gathering much suspicion, and he could use his place as his recruitments as well, of course. That place would have allowed Tom to observe the students' magical talent regarding the Dark Arts in a very convenient manner.

But Dumbledore had rejected him, constantly for the last five years, whenever Tom applied for the job. Furious, Tom was going to curse the place so that nobody could hold that position for more than a year, if Dumbledore rejected him this year as well. But this year, unlike the usual rejection - I do not think you are experienced enough for the profession, Tom - Dumbledore had said that he had already hired someone for the place. Tom was enraged, of course, and was about to stand up and curse right away, when Dumbledore gave him an alternative. The place for Transfiguration. Ever since Mcgonagall became the Deputy, she had had too much work on her hands, and Dumbledore said it would be better if she could concentrate on her Deputy matters and they hire a new professor for Transfiguration. Hence, he was asking Tom.

Tom was a bit perplexed. He knew Dumbledore kept rejecting him because the old man somehow knew Tom's intention on being a Hogwarts professor. But why, then, the Transfiguration professorship? Dumbledore was planning something, for sure. Nonetheless, since being a professor itself was helpful enough for recruitment, Tom had accepted the place. Whatever Dumbledore was planning, Tom could outsmart him.

And this boy, who couldn't be more than twenty, this was who Dumbledore thought as suitable for the Defense Against the Dark Arts. Instead of Tom himself.

 

"Thank you, Mr. Potter. Now, all of you, please, enjoy." As soon as Dumbledore's words ended, a huge feast appeared on the table. Soft exclamations from presumably the first years filled the hall. 

 

Tom could see Harry Potter moving, to find his seat to be right next to Tom's own. Tom couldn't help but steal a glance to those beautiful eyes once more. He knew he was lusting after the young boy, out of nowhere. It really didn't matter, however, what the reason to his unexpected desire is: what mattered was that, Tom wanted to fuck the young professor very badly, and Tom knew just what to do in order to make another person beg for his fucking. Tom knew he was attractive, and he was the master of manipulation. What could go wrong?

 

The Potter family being powerful enough to be useful in Tom's plans was just a bonus.

 

Tom was going to make this young boy fall in love with him, and use that to both take his body and his political power. Plans started devising by itself, in Tom's head.

 

 

 

* * * 

 

 

 

Harry sat in his seat, quickly casting himself the cleaning charm. He was wet like a dog when he said his hellos to his soon-to-be students. It was all because of Sirius, who insisted on going on a final adventure before finally retiring from being an Auror. Not only Sirius made Harry wet from rain, but also he made sure that Harry came in late, breathing heavily like a bloody fugitive.

At least the welcoming feast was wonderful, as always.

 

"Hello."

 

Deep, velvet voice came from his right side. Harry looked, and was surprised to see the most beautiful man he had ever witnessed. And considering Harry had Sirius as his godfather, it was saying something.

 

"Um, Hi." Harry said.

 

"My name is Tom Riddle. You are Harry Potter, right?" The beautiful man said.

 

"Yes, right. Nice to meet you, Tom." Harry said, taking out a hand. Tom stared at his hand for some seconds and took it. Tom's hands were a bit cold, and his fingers were long and elegant. Like a pianist, Harry noticed.

 

"Nice meeting you too." Tom smiled. "Mind my curiosity, but why were you wet?" asked Tom.

 

Harry gave a little laugh. "Ah- Sirius, my godfather, wanted to go on a little trip with me to the Albanian Forest, before I formally became a professor. And it rained a bit in the forest."

 

"Sirius, as in, Sirius Black?"

 

"Yes. Do you know him?"

 

"Of course. The Black family is quite prestigious and powerful in the Ministry. I worked at the Ministry before coming here, so I have heard a lot about Sirius Black." Tom said. 

 

"Huh. I hope nothing too bad." Harry said, smiling back. Tom chuckled.

 

"Well, I do know that he is a bit of a ... trouble maker, shall I say?" Tom's voice went low as he whispered.

 

"Hey, that's my godfather you are talking about!" said Harry, playfully gesturing with his knife towards Tom as a sign of fake threat.

 

"Sorry, but he is not quite someone who I can know nothing but clean records about. I'm sure you know that, being his godson." Tom answered, pretending to dodge Harry's knife though the knife was, as far as it actually was, not threatening at all.

 

Harry laughed. "You're right. Who am I kidding?" Tom followed with a small laughter.

 

"-So, I take it that you are James Potter's son?" 

 

"Right again. How do you know that?" asked Harry, putting some food into his mouth. God, he loved Hogwarts food. For the past two years, because Auror training and being an Auror consumed so much of Harry's time, there hadn't been much time to enjoy some quality food.

 

"Oh, well. Potter is quite famous as well for their wealth, of which you wouldn't need me to explain. And James Potter, the curent head of the Potter family, is infamous for being the troublemaker duo with SIrius Black. Many lowly Minsitry workers such as myself had to do quite some work in order to take care of their mess." Tom said. Harry winced. He knew that his dad and Sirius did not really care much about the miscellaneous regulations Ministry had with Aurors, such as the rule to always bring back the used weapons in one piece. They almost always never brought them back, or in one piece. 

 

"You saying your godfather is Sirius Black, and you being a Potter with the age that is approximately the age James' young and only heir is known to be, well, it was just a wild guess from there." said Tom.

 

"Er... right. Well, sorry about my... dads. They can be a bit of a handful." Harry answered as he ran his hand through his messy hair. The hair became even messier, as if that was possible. Tom surpressed the urge to run through Harry's hair by Tom himself. To take the raven, messy hair in his hands and yank them, just to see the pain and surprise in that innocent schoolboy-like face.

 

"Never mind. I know how Auror work can be difficult, to keep up with all those nonsensical rules and save people's lives." Tom answered. 

 

"Also, there's the fact that I am no longer working for the Ministry." added Tom. He cut the chicken in front of him and put some of it neatly into his mouth. The taste of chicken did not bring much to Tom. Food was, like everything else, just a means for his objectives.

 

"But Tom, I don't think you were a lowly worker at the Ministry. I think you're being humble." Harry said. His mouth was full with food. Tom usually despised people with bad table manners, like talking with food in their mouths. But Harry's bad manners were almost... adorable. And it reminded Tom of something which was definitely not food, inside Harry's mouth.

 

Tom choked slightly as the image appears in front of him again. Merlin, what was wrong with him today? Desires, sexual or not, were never this strong to Tom before.

 

"Why do you think so, Harry?" Tom managed to ask, after taking down his food.

 

"Becuase when I first heard of your name, I knew that I have heard that name before, and now I have remembered. You are the Slytherin genius, aren't you?"

 

"I never knew that was my nickname." Tom answered. Well, he kind of knew, but he was trying to appear modest and humble. He wanted Potter family's support, after all.

 

"Yes you do. Um, when I was in my second year in Hogwarts, I have heard of a genius seventh year named Riddle. I never saw your face, because we didn't cross paths or anything, but I heard that you did with your wand what nobody has ever seen before. Not even Dumbledore. Isn't that right?"

 

Tom smiled. "You are not wrong."

 

"Arrogant prick." Harry said. Tom, slightly surprised, looked at Harry's face. Harry was smirking. Well, if this is what Harry is like, then Tom wouldn't play the humble card anymore.

 

"It's not exactly something I can control, I mean, I'm so good at everything." Tom said. Harry was laughing, a bit loud that others could hear. Tom didn't mind, surprisingly. "But I was not wrong when I said I was a lowly worker. The Ministry would not make me anyone of importance simply because of my upbringing."

 

"Your upbringing?" Harry asked, curiously. "What do you mean?"

 

"Well, my parents are not like Potters or the Blacks." Tom pondered, before going on. How much should he tell Harry, he did not know. Usually, he would stop there, because information meant power. However, something in Tom told him that being a bit more open about himself would gain Harry's trust, which was exactly what he wanted. As fast as possible.

 

"I grew up in an Orphanage because my mother died promptly after giving birth to me, and my father abandoned us. I have researched who they might be, back when I was in Hogwarts, and figured out that my father was a muggle, and my mother was a witch from a poor family called the Gaunts."

 

Harry startled. "Gaunts? Aren't they the descendent of-"

 

"Salazar Slytherin. So I thought. But no, they are the different Gaunts who never produced any heir, and they died about a century ago. Therefore, I'm not the heir of Slytherin, and nobody is." Tom had checked, multiple times, longing for the strongest bloodline he could have had for his origin. But Fate was cruel. With providing Tom the surname of 'Gaunt', she had Tom hanging onto his hope until conclusive evidence proved to Tom that his 'Gaunt' was nothing but a muggle's name. 

 

"The Gaunts from my mother's side are actually from a muggle name." The ministry, because of Grindelwald's defeat, was more open to half-bloods and muggleborns. Many of those in power were half-bloods. However, they still cared about the family name, and the ones in power, all of which who had the ancient family names, were always looking down on Tom, no matter how many times Tom had proved himself to be brilliant. 

Tom was frustrated at this glass ceiling that never seemed to break. He could go the other way around, to completely disregard the current order of the Ministry and wage a war against Magical Britain. He was powerful enough. He knew what to do with the ignored and alienated Dark Creatures. Werewolves, vampires, inferi, even. He knew how to make them submit to Tom. And all of them with Tom's power was more than enough to stomp on the little island that was United Kingdom.

The poblem was, however, that he needed some actual human beings following him if Tom was going to rule the country after the war. The Dark Creatures will obey him, of course, because they valued nothing over their own lives. However, Tom wanted domination above humans, not only those Creatures. And he just knew that the old-fashioned idiots of many, many wizards in power would not succumb to Tom's violence or power. They wanted legitimacy out of blood. They would pretend to submit to Tom, at first, but will soon plot for revolution with their idea of a legitimate leader on the front. Stopping their revolution and eviscerating them all would be child's play, but the problem was that Tom did not want to live in a world where everyone was just dead, nobody left for Tom to dominate over. He needed at least half of the population alive, not plotting for boring and useless revolution that would leave Tom no choice but to execute them. The only way to preserve those half, was to gain legitimacy so that they would genuinely accept Tom as their leader. He could then either wage war or gain power within the current system, whatever he pleased to do then.

To gain legitimacy, he needed support from the existing powerful families. The ones in the Ministry, however, did not give Tom much support, no matter how well Tom manipulated them with his charm and brilliance. Being very old and conservative, they saw Tom nothing more than a charming young boy who can never be more than a plebeian. It was easy to gain their trust, but it was hard to make them see Tom as someone they would want to give the political support for.

That was when he observed Dumbledore. Dumbledore was a half-blood, and his family was not so much better than Tom's, although Dumbledore's family was a bit more known for their magical abilites. Dumbledore was brilliant and great like Tom-Tom hated admitting this-; Dumbledore was already corressponding with prominent theoreticians from his second year at Hogwarts. Students and professors at Hogwarts praised and admired Dumbledore. That was what Tom had achieved as well: his Hogwarts years were full of admirations and reverence from people all around the world. But the world of politics were a bit different: it took something more than an astonishing magical talent.

But Dumbledore, without a great family name, got his place in Wizengamot, and wielded significant amount of political power over the Ministry, while denying any more power that just kept being offered to him. So what was Dumbledore's secret for such power, while him and Tom were basically the same in family name and in talent? Grindelwald's defeat surely worked in Dumbledore's favor, but Tom had seen the stubbornness of the Wizengamot: those old, stupid idiots wouldn't have given Dumbledore so much power only because of the duel, no matter how amazing it was.

That was when Tom realized, that people in power supported Dumbledore because almost all of them and/or their children went to Hogwarts.

Sneaky old bastard! Tom thought. The reason why Dumbledore was still at Hogwarts, denying any powerful seats in the Ministry was because Dumbledore knew that that was his best way to harvest his followers, or in other words, his power. People of the Wizengamot had children and grandchildren who graduated from Hogwarts and had Dumbledore as their headmaster or as their professor. Dumbledore, being the manipulative brat that he was, maneuvered his ways into the students' minds and made them fully support Dumbledore in most of his choices. That, in turn, made the heads of the famous families move in favor of Dumbledore, giving him power.

After realizing such, Tom had been incessantly applying for a Hogwarts professorship. He was very confident in his manipulating skills: he could do what Dumbledore did, if not better.

 

"Ah. That's quite unfair, isn't it? I'm sorry to hear that." came Harry's reply. Tom almost sneered, but held it in. What would a Potter know about his misfortunes as a nobody?

 

"You might think that I wouldn't understand because I'm a Potter." Harry said as if he knew what Tom was thinking. "Maybe you're right, but I do not approve of those political power games at all, if that means anything to you." Harry added. Tom met Harry's eyes. The clear green was free of any kind of insincerity.

 

"It does mean something to me. Thank you." Tom said, after looking into those eyes for a bit. Harry nodded with a smile. Then, he frowned.

 

"Tom, why is that you haven't eaten much from your plate?"

 

"Because I wanted to talk to you, Harry, and I was taught to have good manners at the dining table, unlike some others."

 

Harry got the insinuation. He nudged Tom's arm. "Hey, it's not my fault that the Potters do not care much about manners. It's just how we are."

 

"So I've heard, seen, and experienced." Tom said with a smirk.

 

"You are evil." Harry said, giggling. He looked so... innocent and harmless. Tom couldn't believe Harry was a former Auror.

 

The rest of the feast was cheerful, and Tom was surprised that he did not have to use much of his charm or manipulative skills to be around the boy. Most of the times, Tom had to work out the very detail of his conduct around other people, so that every last bit was calculated to being the most efficient in leaving good impressions of himself. But Harry seemed to make Tom forget a bit of his obsessive self-control. What of Harry was the reason, Tom had no idea. It did not matter, in the end, because it did not hinder with Tom's plan at all, or so he thought.

Tom had just finished his plate when Dumbledore announced that the feast was over. Mcgonagall gave students detailed instructions of how to follow the Prefects of each House, and how their class schedules will be distributed soon. Full of excitement and anticipation, the students talked and laughed as they left the Great Hall with their prefects.

 

"Now, professors, I believe we should introduce the new professors to their rooms." Mcgonagall said, facing the professor's aisle. "Mr. Riddle, I will show you to your room. And for Mr. Potter, could Mr. Malfoy please show him his room, please?"

 

"Sure, Minerva." The white-blond hair man answered. He glanced over to where Harry was. Tom suddently felt a tinge of discomfort in his stomach and he couldn't fathom why.

He was a Malfoy indded, then. Tom thought. There wasn't a Malfoy in Tom's Hogwarts years, and now was the chance to gain support from the Malfoys through that professor. He looked like he was in his mid 20s, like Tom, and because there weren't fellow Malfoys in Tom's school years, he must've went to a foreign school. Thinking of the connections the Malfoys had with the French, maybe Beauxbatons? Malfoy's accent, however, did not show any that of french. It was possible that the Malfoys' strict education made sure that said professor's both English and French accent were perfect.

 

"Follow me, Mr. Riddle. Other professors, good night." said Mcgonagall. Tom stood up to follow her. He turned to see Harry.

 

"It was nice meeting you, Harry. I had a pleasant evening." Tom said. It was comfortable, like they already knew each other before, while in reality, they have never crossed paths.

 

"Me too, Tom. Good night." Harry said, smiling, beautiful green eyes filled with honesty. The level of attraction Tom was feeling was so strong that it was almost laughable.

 

"Good night." Tom said, instead of I want to fuck you on this table until you remember of nothing but my name. Not once Tom had felt this raw, immense sexual desire to someone. It was a bit frightening. Tom took his gaze from Harry's face, and finally followed Mcgonagall to his room.

 

As Harry saw Tom leaving with Mcgonagall, a pale, white-blond man came into his vision. He must be Malfoy, then, Harry thought.

 

"Come this way, Mr. Potter." Malfoy said, as he gestured.

 

"Er, nice to meet you, Mr. Malfoy?" Harry said. He hurriedly followed Malfoy's back.

 

"Nice to meet you too. I think you have never met me because I have attended Beauxbatons. You are from Hogwarts, am I correct?" said Malfoy. He was walking a bit fast.

 

"Right, um, would you mind going a bit slower?"

 

Malfoy stopped. It seemed like he didn't know that he was going so fast. He waited until Harry caught up.

 

"I have heard about the Potters, Mr. Potter. They are known to be quite mischievous." Malfoy said, as he walked a bit slower this time.

 

"You can say that. Um, My name's Harry. Call me Harry, please."

 

"Harry. The name's Draco. You can call me that, if you want to."

 

"Draco, does that mean something like a Dragon?"

 

"-Yes. Something like that. Malfoys are very careful when selecting their children's name."

 

"Not like us, then. My name's so common, even my middle name is James."

 

Draco snorted. Yes, it was very plain. But unlike the name, the boy next to him was anything but plain. He was simply, quite beautiful. He seemed too young to be a professor, which, Draco himself was not free of such a description, but the boy seemed to be very young, even younger than Draco. He knew Harry Potter was a former auror, heir of the Potter family, with his father as the Head Auror. Although Harry was a half-blood, because he was a Potter and many of his family members were senior-level Aurors and Ministry officers, his power over the Wizengamot would be quite strong, as soon as he succeeds his father.

Draco could not un-know this. Malfoys were very keen on political power. It was what helped them survive all these years, after all; always choosing to side with the powerful ones. It was all what his father talked about at their dinner tables. Who had what kind of power because of what.

 

"I wouldn't expect much from a Potter, a family known for their untraditional ways. Muggle-friendly, not going to the Wizard Balls, and all that. Yet you come from the powerful Peverells."

 

"It sounds like you have a problem with us being- untraditional, are you?" Harry said, voice a bit strained.

 

"I don't care much about your untraditional ways. They do not affect me."

 

"Well, I know that the Malfoys don't accept much of that blood equality ideology." Harry knew he was walking on thin ice, but it was never in him to back off from a sensitive subject because he was afraid.

 

"No, we don't. Muggles are simply lesser than Wizards and Witches. They do not have magical powers." Draco answered. "That does not mean we stand with Grindelwald. We do not want blood."

 

Harry snorted.

 

"Then a half-blood like me is also less than you, a pure-blood wizard?" Harry said.

 

Draco stared at Harry as they walked slowly. Harry seemed a bit indignant at Draco's words, he realized. Draco did not want to antagonize the Potter heir.

 

"Of course not. You are a wizard, not a muggle." came Draco's answer. Harry met Draco's eyes for a second. Harry was not stupid, he knew how the Malfoys do not like the Potter way of accepting muggles and muggleborns. But Draco seemed like he was trying not to offend Harry, and Harry appreciated such effort.

 

"Right then." Harry said, deciding that he wants to change the subject. A short conversation in the Hogwarts corridor would not end the century-long debate concerning muggles. "So what do you teach, Draco?"

 

"Potions. I am a Potions Master, in fact." Draco answered.

 

"A Potions Master? But you look terribly young!" Harry exclaimed. Draco looked at Harry, with a bit of a funny expression on his face. Harry knew straight away that, well, Harry was probably not the right person to say so, being very young himself.

 

"I'm not a bloody Potions Master, in fact I am rubbish at Potions. I'm just a professor. Some professors do start at a young age, you know, like Mcgonagall, she started teaching only after two years from graduating, just like me." Harry added.

 

"Well, just-a-professor, I seem to have my way with Potions. I understand them more than I understand Humans, sometimes."

 

"You sound so much like Professor Snape." Harry mumbled.

 

"Which can be more than a coincidence, as he is my godfather." Draco answered. "He recommended me for his place here at Hogwarts a year ago."

 

"Oh." Harry recalled the former Potions professor, always so gloomy and hating on Harry, due to his rivalry against his dad. Snape's godson was Draco, cause why the fuck not.

 

Draco stopped in his tracks. It seemed like they have arrived at Harry's room.

 

"Here's your room, Harry." said Draco.

 

"Thank you."

 

"You are welcome. A house elf will arrive tomorrow with further instructions, and I believe you should rise at seven thirty in the morning. My room is right next to yours, which is probably why Minerva wanted me to take you to your room. Feel free to use that information if you need me." Draco said.

 

"That's very nice of you." Harry smiled. "Good night, then." Draco gave him a curt nod. The blond haired boy seemed a bit too well-mannered, Harry thought. Very strict in his demeanor, Draco was.  

 

Draco observed Harry's back as the boy went into his room. The messy black hair was very unlike Draco's sleek hair. Nevertheless, it was somehow part of the boy's charm. Draco was always sexually attracted to males more than females, and it seemed like Harry was attractive enough to remind Draco of that fact.

 

Well, nothing bad with a harmless crush, Draco thought. Even if the crush was a, according to his father, a 'filthy' half-blood.

 

 

 

 

   

 

  

Chapter Text

 

 

 

Harry was in the middle of teaching the class of the Ridikkulus charm, when there was a knock at the door.

It has been a month at Hogwarts, and things were going well. Although Harry was young, the other professors treated him with respect. Draco treated him with a bit of an indifference, it seemed, and their conversation were often tense due to their different values. Other than that, nobody was mean to Harry or anything. Life was great. The reason why Harry had accepted Dumbledore's offer on taking the Defense Against the Dark Arts professorship was simply because Harry loved Hogwarts so much that he wanted to experience the school for a couple more years. After that, he could go back to the Auror department, or not. He would wait and see.

There hasn't been any interruptions in his class for the past month, until now. Curious, Harry told the class to practice on the wand movement and opened the door.

There was Draco.

 

"Hi, what's the matter?" Harry said.

 

"Harry, I require your assistance immediately. One of our students have foolishly tried some dark magic in their potions." Draco answered.

 

"What?!"

 

Surprised, Harry told one of the Hufflepuff prefects in his class to make sure the class reviews three different kinds of disarmaming spells, and hurriedly left the class with Draco.

 

"You should have just came in without knocking, you know, this is quite an emergency." Harry said, while running to Draco's classroom.

 

"Well, it's just... the manners, they are ingrained in me." answered Draco, between breaths.

 

"Right." Harry could see that. No time for any more chatting. Harry ran as fast as he could until he finally reached the Potions classroom next to the dungeons. The DADA classroom was definitely too many stairs up high.

When Harry went in, he could see a crowd of students around one particular student. When they saw Draco and Harry, they parted to make way. Harry went through them, and saw one female student, covering her face with her hands. She was desperate, not trying to show her face to anyone.

 

"Ms. Lestrange, you have to show Professor Potter so that he can help you." Draco said in a chastising voice.

 

"No! I'd rather die." said the girl. She was Bellatrix Lestrange, then. Harry thought. She was a bit more sensitive and, for lack of a better word, wild, compared to others. A second grade student already playing with the Dark Arts, she surely was the curious type. Whenever Harry had met Bellatrix's eyes when she was in Harry's class, he could see extreme instability.

 

"Ms. Lestrange, I warn you, you may lose your face permanently if you put on with this nonsense any longer." Draco's whole body was stiff. It was clear that Draco did not know how to handle kids like Bellatrix.

 

"No!" Bellatrix screamed. She stomped on her feet, her screams getting only louder and squeakier. Draco was lost, he did not know what to do. What did his parents do when Draco disobeyed? They disciplined Draco with physical punishment. Was that what Draco had to do?

 

"Draco, let me take care of this, will you?" Harry asked. After a short moment, Draco nodded.

 

"Bella, listen to me. This is Professor Potter, and I'm here to heal you. Do you hear me?" Harry whispered to Bellatrix, in a soothing voice.

 

Bellatrix nodded. Harry could hear her sniffle. Poor kid, Harry thought.

 

"Now, I know you don't want to show your face to anyone else. Why don't we go outside, and you can show it only to me?" Harry asked.

 

"-Only, only to you, professor?" the little girl whispered back.

 

"Only to me. And I promise, I will not say anything about it to anyone else." Harry answered. Bellatrix slowly nodded, with her face still in her hands and her big messy black hair. Harry took the little girl in his arms, and let her bury her face in Harry's chest. Harry wished he was a bit bigger, especially in situations like this. Though his twenty-one year old body could manage a twelve-year-old girl, he wanted to be able to do this to bigger kids as well.

Harry carefully took her outside. He could hear the sounds of other students mumbling about her. Closing the Potions classroom, those noises weren't there anymore. Harry knew some students were still peaking through the little window on the door, so he took Bellatrix to a nearby classroom.

When they were inside a nearby empty classroom, he put Bellatrix down on a desk, allowing her to sit with still her face covered. He closed the door, and cast a silencing charm. He then charmed the windows of the classroom completely opaque so that no one could see through them.

Few flickering candlelights were all of the lights remaining. Harry came closer to Bellatrix, and touched her shoulders.

 

"Bella, I've charmed the classroom so no sound can escape from here. Nobody can look into this classroom as well. Now, will you show me your face, please?" Harry whispered.

 

"-But, I don't want you to think me as ugly." came back Bellatrix's reply.

 

"I have seen and experienced much worse all around the world, Bella. This would be nothing." Harry said. "I wouldn't think you as ugly. Promise."

 

"Promise?" The girl said in a small voice.

 

"Promise. Will you let me see that pretty face of yours?" Harry asked.

 

Bellatrix slowly moved her hands away from her face.

 

Half of her face, except for her eyes, has almost melted. It looked grotesque, for sure, but Harry did not flinch for a second. As Harry said, Harry has seen far worse on so many people. So Bellatrix probably, instead of using the standard heating spell, tried a heating jinx that resembled Fiendfyre. It was, undoubtedly, extremely dangerous for a twelve-year old to try.

 

"It must've hurt terribly, hasn't it?" Harry asked, concern in his voice.

 

"Yes, yes it has. It still burns now, professor. Please, help me." Bellatrix said, on the verge of crying once more. Crying would make the injury burn even more, and that was the only reason why the girl hasn't burst into full-on sobbing yet.

 

"Don't worry. It might hurt a bit, though. Here, hold this." Harry gave Bellatrix his left arm, which wouldn't be of need for his treatment. Bellatrix held it tightly, anticipating the pain that was coming.

 

"finire tenebris."

 

Harry whispered. Bellatrix let out a little squeal. She was indeed brave, because Harry knew that the pain from that spell could easily make any adult scream. With his left hand given to Bella for squeezing, Harry maneuvered his wand with his right hand and made a delicate wand movement, concentrating intensely.

After a couple of minutes filled with extreme concentration and pain-enduring sniffles, it was over. A success.

Bellatrix's face gradually came back to what it was. Feeling her skin harden again, she let go of Harry's arm and started to touch her face warily. When it felt like normal skin, she screamed.

 

"It's back! It's back! It's back, isn't it?!"

 

"Yes, Bella. It's back. You are beautiful like your name suggests." Harry said, smiling. Bellatrix beamed, her eyes at the same time filled with joyful tears. She lunged herself at Harry, hugging the professor tightly.

 

"Thank you, professor. I, I know I wasn't nice to you before. I'm sorry." said Bella, at Harry's neck.

 

Harry chuckled. Harry didn't even notice that she wasn't being nice to him. "It's all right, Bella. Would you like to see the mirror?"

 

The young girl nodded enthusiastically. Harry conjured out a mirror and handed it to her, and she was filled with joy when she saw her reflection.

 

"Bella, but I do have to warn you. This time, I could fix it because your jinx was underpowered. But if you make another accident like this with a little more power, I don't know if I can fix it. I don't think there is a healing spell for that at all." Harry said. Harry could, actually, heal something like this even if it were in a much more severe state: the spell was invented by Harry himself to treat such severe cases. But Bellatrix needn't know that. If she knew, Harry was pretty sure that she would try this again, her being so unstable and impulsive.

 

Bella nodded. She was still happy to have her face back, but the realization that she would get punished for her actions drawn upon her.

 

"I will not take any House points from you because I know professor Malfoy will. But you have to promise me not to do this again, for your own sake. It worries me." Harry looked at the young girl's eyes. The unstable eyes were somewhat calmed down, as nature does after a violent storm. "Promise? Like I promised you before?" Harry asked, maintaining eye contact.

 

The young girl hesitated for a moment. She had never promised anyone anything before, not sincerely anyways. But she felt like professor Potter was wanting sincerity, and Bellatrix could not stop herself from yielding to that request. Why, she did not know- maybe because he himself was so undoubtedly sincere.

 

"O-okay. Mr. Potter. I mean, professor. I promise." She said, finally.

 

"Good." Harry smiled, ruffling Bella's hair. It was a mess. Harry laughed. "Your hair is quite a mess, like mine." He said.

 

Harry did not have a clue, that as he was taking young Bellatrix back to the classroom, Bellatrix was feeling something for the first time in her life. It was some sort of warmth, the kind that could be generated only from another being's sincere kindness. Which was something she never had the chance to encounter, until then and there with Harry.

 

 

 

* * *

 

 

 

Harry went back to his class, and dismissed them a bit earlier than usual. Whatever time left was a bit too short to be of any use. Students were thrilled to have a bit of a free time, and they all rushed outside. Harry was organizing the day's material when Draco came in.

 

"Harry."

 

Startled, Harry looked up. He did not know Draco had came in. "Draco, hi. Everything went all right?"

 

"Yes, thanks to you." Draco answered. He looked a bit... embarrassed?

 

"I don't know why I came to you first than going to Madam Pomfrey, but I was moving on my instincts. It was Dark Magic, and you are teaching the defense against it, so... " Although Harry hadn't asked him about it or anything, Draco was giving explanation to an unasked question, with his eyes on his ground, clearly lacking confidence. "... I took a leap of faith, sort of." It was unlike Draco to be so flustered. He was always curt with Harry.

 

"No problem, anytime...?" Harry answered, confused.

 

A minute or two of silence. Both of them didn't know what to say or do. Harry did not know why Draco was being so hesitant in his explanation, and Draco simply did not know what he wanted to say to Harry.

 

"Right." Harry said, finally breaking the silence.

 

"Right. So, I will be going." said Draco.

 

"You don't have to announce your leaving like that. You're not the bloody King." said Harry, trying to defuse the tension.

 

Draco, clearly not realizing that it was a joke, looked up at Harry's face with a startled impression. When he saw Harry smirking, Draco let out a laugh.

 

"Well, I am something close to the bloody King. Do you know how many times the Minister comes over to our manor each year, Potter?" Draco said, with a smirk.

 

It was amusing to see Draco, finally a bit loose to be actually joking. Harry fired back.

 

"That's because the Malfoys are the best at kissing arse."

 

"Wh- Potter, you should know better than that. You are not a teenager anymore, and your word choice may affect your younger fans." Draco answered. Now, he was full-on sneering, in a humorous way. "Maybe you wouldn't know that because you have just finished being a teenager?"

 

"I know that I was a cool one, though. Unlike someone who must have been quite a nerd, to be a Potions Master at the age of twenty five." said Harry.

 

"I was twenty three when I became one, actually." Pride was evident in Draco's voice.

 

"I rest my case." Harry said.

 

Draco smirked. He was a bit tense with Harry around, because he was attracted to Harry yet he shouldn't be. Malfoys do not associate with those who are not pure, at least not romantically. That was what he had been taught, for most of his life. And Harry was a half-blood, despite being a Potter. Also, Potters was on the Light's side, protecting muggles and the sort. Definitely someone who Draco should not be crushing on. However, Harry's beautiful eyes and lithe body made Draco's attraction grow whenever he was around the younger professor, and he simply couldn't let it happen. Draco was intentionally indifferent and curt around Harry, as a result, in an attempt to hide his attraction and suppress his own emotions towards Harry.

And today, when Lestrange was making a mess, Draco just knew that Harry would be able to fix it. He has heard of Harry's power from his father's informants. Harry was wonderful in combat charms, they said, extremely strong disarming and stunning spells cast effortlessly and instinctively. It was also known by many that Harry could heal many dark magic-induced damages. Therefore, Draco did not waste any time going to the infirmary, but went straight to Harry's classroom.

Lestrange was being a bitch that she was, the little body screaming in whatever way she pleased. This was her stupid fault, and she was making a great mess out of it. Draco was appalled at the stupidity of young children. Why would they do such thing, even when they do not know how to handle it? And then, when they should be begging for other's mercy to handle their mess, they cry and demand care, like they deserve it.

Which was exactly what his father would say, whenever Draco made a mistake when he was young.

Draco was about to say those words, and was about to resort to physical violence, when Harry chipped in.

The young boy worked like a wonder. The little crazy Lestrange girl practically melted into Harry's arms, and Draco had no idea what Harry told her to be so calm and compliant. Draco knew for sure how the Lestrange family did not approve of impure bloods, like the Malfoys, and thus the little Lestrange girl must have hated Harry with no reason. It was just what she was taught from a young age. Draco knew that from his own experience.

However, she was clingling to Harry like a hatchling, as Harry carried her outside of the classroom. And when she came back, her face fully healed, Draco could see warmth radiating from the girl. Bellatrix Lestrange was, Draco knew, a bit mentally impaired, as she was the outcome of an incestuous marriage. But then and there, she looked... normal

What was this magic Harry was casting? To Draco, and then to Lestrange as well?

The soft look that lingered on Lestrange's face made Draco only suffer from more want. The unconscious part of him wanted to feel something like that, and Draco hadn't realized until then just how badly he was wanting it.

It reminded Draco somehow, of his own mother, who used to cover for Draco whenever the punishment from his father was too harsh.

 

"No more objections?" Harry said. He was almost done with his organising.

 

"No more." Draco, maybe, was going to do something more than just crushing from afar. Maybe. His father didn't have to know.

 

"Good. Now, get out of my office."

 

"Yes, sir." Draco said, bowing deeply like he was dealing with the Minister. Harry cackled, and Draco smiled.

 

 

 

* * *

 

 

 

Tom was waiting for Harry, when Harry came outside of his office for lunch. It was what Tom would always do, for the past month.

 

"Ready to go, Harry?" Tom asked.

 

"Sure thing. I'm starving. You?"

 

"Food would be nice."

 

Tom's face was indifferent, not showing any kind of joy at the mention of food. He was quite well-built, and he ate a healthy amount of food, but Harry thought Tom never enjoyed any of them. It looked like Tom ate for his body to work as he pleases, and that was the only point of him eating.

 

"I've heard that there was an incident in Malfoy's class today." Tom said, interrupting Harry's observations.

 

"Ah- yes. Bellatrix Lestrange. She had an accident."

 

"Hmm. And I've also heard that you were fast and wise enough to cure her back to life." Tom was smirking, and Harry averted his eyes, blushing a bit. The man was way too beautiful, Harry thought. With the pale skin, burgundy eyes, high and sharp cheekbones and jawline. And most of all, the eyes had something of a dramatic flair, authority oozing out of them naturally. His body and pose also screamed of power.

 

"Well, it's just basic Auror stuff." Harry answered. He wanted to hide his blush from Tom. Harry did not want to make Tom uncomfortable. Tom has been very nice to Harry for the past month.

 

"I don't believe so, but I will pretend to be tricked by your modesty, to save you from further embarrassment."

 

"Haha, you prat. I guess I should thank you."

 

Tom smiled at the smaller professor. He of course noticed Harry's little attraction with him. It wasn't a surprise, because almost everyone crushed on Tom as soon as Tom intended them to. But Tom did not act on actively seducing him, not yet, because Tom knew Harry was the type that wanted trust before being physically intimate. Upon close inspection Tom held for the past month, Tom could infer preferences Harry had on his sex life, many of which were with his friends. He was not the type to do one night stands, because Harry couldn't trust the other person fully, said Harry.

Tom was not going to make his little conquest run away from him and be all awkward only because Tom made his move too quickly. No, Tom would wait, see the trust building in those beautiful eyes of his, and then finally take Harry like he did repeatedly and shamelessly in his dreams.

 

"So, Harry, remind me again, why did you want to become a Hogwarts professor, leaving behind the exciting life that is an Auror?" Conversations about dreams and aspirations were always great in gaining trust.

 

"Er. Well. I loved Hogwarts so much. It's my home, you know."

 

"Yes, I do know, because it has been my home as well. My orphanage was never a home. But why you? I thought you had a lovely home."

 

"Right, well. Ever since my mum died, my home was really not taken care of. I mean, we had house elves and everything so it was clean, but not really home-y. Dad was always out with Sirius for his work, and I knew that was because he couldn't handle the loss of my mum." There were no sign of sadness in Harry's voice. Tom knew of Lily Potter's death, because Harry had mentioned it before, due to Tom's questions. And whenever Harry was mentioning her death, Harry did not seem to be stirred emotionally. A bad mother, was she? Tom wondered to himself.

 

"My godfathers, Sirius and Remus, took care of me, and my dad did his best to love me. But my eyes reminded him too much of my mum." Harry continued. "So I was kind of unwelcomed in my home, though not really. Does that make sense?"

 

Tom nodded. He did not want to interrupt, when Harry was opening up to him.

 

They arrived at the Great Hall, the place already packed with students. They both went to the professor's aisle. Harry resumed his explanation.

 

"Naturally, when I was eleven years old and got my Hogwarts letter, I was finally free from the suffocating place that was my home. When I came here, I could freely prove myself with my magic to others, and I was finally out of mum's shadows. It was magical, and free. I can't forget the first time my housemates lifting me up high in the air for catching the snitch at my first year."

 

"I can definitely understand that." Tom said. This time, it was not manipulation, but a sincere response. Because Tom could relate to that feeling, from the bottom of his heart. People acknowledging him finally for how special he is, how powerful he is, compared to being the freak in the muggle orphanage. The irony of having to call such a suffocating place, 'home'.

 

"I think yours would have been far worse than mine, though. I cannot imagine growing up in a muggle orphanage." Harry said. Tom said nothing, both of them knew that it was true.

 

After a moment of silence, Tom asked further.

 

"Is your dad still the same way? I thought you mentioned his name quite fondly for the last few weeks."

 

"My dad came back to reality, eventually. When I was in fifth year, he apologized for neglecting me. I was grown enough to understand him, too. My mum was the love of his life." Harry said. He was taking a bunch of sweet potato paste into his mouth. "Now, my house is so much better. Sirius and Remus practically lives with my dad. But Hogwarts still is my home."

 

Tom nodded. So that's why Harry, who is instinctively adventurous, left one of the most adventurous jobs available for a wizard.

 

"Enough about me, though. What about you? What was your life at the orphanage like?" Harry asked.

 

For the remainder of their lunch, Tom opened up about himself more than he did to anyone else. It was another time of him losing his paranoid grip of self-control, but he let it happen, because it was only in front of Harry, and Tom could feel from his instincts that Harry wouldn't betray him with the information. Also, Tom knew being honest would help gaining Harry's trust a lot faster.

He told Harry about the magic-despising guardians and fellow orphans. He told Harry about the disgusting food and bedidngs they had. He also talked about the names that others called him for being 'weird'. The worst of all was, he told Harry, when he had to leave Hogwarts for the vacations. He had to leave the glorious place that was Hogwarts, where people knew his name and his powers and praised him for it, and go to a place where he was forced to call 'home', where nobody appreciated the way he was, and nobody cared for his coming back. During his train ride, he had to endure other Hogwarts students talking about what they would want to do when they finally go back to their homes. It reminded Tom too much of what he never had, and will never have. He hated it.

He didn't talk about his own revenges and trophies that he had with other orphans, how he sabotaged their lives and stole their items in an act of revenge to their bullying.

He didn't talk about the time when he led two fellow orphans to a cave and showed them what he could do with his power, which made them go insane. 

Harry was very attentive, asking him further questions. The big, pretty green eyes betrayed clearly, whatever emotions that were going through Harry during Tom's stories. Harry felt sad and sorry for Tom when he heard of the bullying Tom had to go through, and he sympathized deeply with Tom during his train-ride-back-home stories.

 

Today's lunch was a huge success, Tom thought. For several weeks, they only talked about magic, work, and their friends (as if Tom had a real 'friend'. Tom just introduced his housemates and his colleagues as his friends.), because they were the easy topics. But it seemed like Harry was finally opening up to Tom.

What he didn't realize, were two pairs of eyes watching them closely. One of them were pale grey, almost silver; and the other were piercing blue.

 

 

 

* * *

 

 

 

"Today, we're going to learn the vanishing spell. Anyone can tell me what it is?" Tom asked the class.

 

Giggles swept through the class as Tom looked back. Tom raised an eyebrow, knowing exactly what that giggle was about. The girls were exchanging letters about Tom's looks, and Tom did not have to read them out loud to know what they said. He had already taken and read a variety of them several times.

It was sometimes a bit exhausting to be this attractive. Tom thought.

 

One of the boys held their hands up high. 

 

"Yes, Mr. Diggory?" Tom asked.

 

A pureblood from the Diggory family, whose head works at the Magical Creatures Department. Not that powerful, but it wouldn't hurt to earn the boy's trust, Tom thought to himself.

 

"Sir, I believe it is simply a spell to vanish almost anything into nothingness." Diggory replied.

 

"Correct, Mr. Diggory. And do you know the incantation?" Tom asked.

 

"Yes, sir. Evanesco, sir."

 

"Great. 10 points to Hufflepuff." Other Hufflepuffs around the Diggory boy gave him a quiet cheer. Hufflepuffs, so naïve and nice and weak, Tom sneered internally.

 

"The vanishing spell is very simple, because you only need to know one spell for vanishing almost anything, but at the same time, it is certainly not an easy spell. As I told you before, Transfiguration requires precise wand movements and body weight distribution. Watch."

 

Tom gestured his wand at the snake in front of him that had been staying there from the start of the class.

 

"Evanesco."

 

The snake started to disappear from its tail, twisting in pain. Some of the students gasped in horror.

 

"You wouldn't need me to warn you how dangerous this spell is. It has not yet been revealed if vanished objects can come back or not, so only use this spell on something you are sure that you want it gone forever." Explained Tom. "Now, I will conjure a snail for each of you to practice. The reason that I am giving you snails is becuase they are easier to vanish than others, simply because their body structure is simper than most other animals." Tom continued while he swifted his wand to conjure one big snail in front of each student. All of it was done in such a simple, elegant and wordless way that made students look at Tom in awe.

Magic was always so easy for Tom.

 

One of the students raised her hand.

 

"Yes, Ms. Parkinson?" Tom asked. Pansy Parkinson, a pureblood Slytherin who was fiercely loyal to the pureblood ideology. It was unexpected that she was among the lead admirers of Tom, who was a half-blood. But then again, that was the point of recruiting teenagers. They were so much more impressionable than the old, stuck up conservatives of the Ministry.

 

"-S, Sir, I think your conjuring skills are magnificient." She said, in a trembling voice.

 

Tom gave her a charming smile. Stupid child, he said to himself. Of course he was magnificient.

 

"Thank you, Ms. Parkinson. You will learn conjuring charms starting from your next year. Now, I'd like you to work in pairs, and start practicing, keeping in mind the wand movement drawn in your textbooks. Start now, everyone."

 

The sound of students mumbling and swishing their wands soon filled the classroom. Students kept stealing glances at Tom, as he walked near students, supervising their work.

 

When class was finished and Tom dismissed them, he heard several of the packing students discussing something about Harry. Curious, he listened in, inconspicuously.

 

"-Dumbledore's Army?"

 

"Yeah, I heard that too. Potter was a former Auror, did you know that?"

 

"No way. We have to get into that club. It's going to be so cool, isn't it?"

 

"What club?"

 

Sudden interruption from Tom startled the chatting students. They gaped at Tom, who was expecting answers without any explanations. One of the students started to talk.

 

"Uh... sir, we heard professor Potter was going to open a duel club, because students asked him to."

 

"And the club's name is Dumbledore's Army?" Tom asked, one of his eyebrows raised. The name was disgusting.

 

"No, sir. That was the name of a duelling club that existed a couple of years ago, urm, and I heard professor Potter was the one who made it." Another student answered. "This time around, I don't know what name it's going to have, but we're pretty sure it's going to be really exciting. Are you coming as well, professor?" She asked. Tom's public image to students was friendly enough for them to talk about these stuff with Tom.

 

"Hmm. Sure, why not? I'll ask professor Potter myself." Tom answered. The students were delighted at Tom's response. They all heard of Tom's genius as well, and they were excited to see a duel between professors Riddle and Potter. It was bound to happen, if Tom came to the club.

 

"Off you go, then. Thank you for letting me know." Tom said, gesturing them to the door. The dazzling smile he put on his face until the very last moment were dropped as soon as they were out.

 

A duelling club. How interesting.

 

It was only fitting that Harry, as kind as he was, listened to his students' request and made a club. But 'Dumbledore's Army'? Surely Harry was close with Dumbledore, Tom could see that from their interactions during meals. But he did not know just how loyal Harry was to the old headmaster. Tom mulled over the possibility that Dumbledore might have had Harry as a spy for Tom, but concluded that it wasn't likely. Harry was too not inquisitive to be a spy on Tom. Harry did not pry into Tom's life, and he only asked questions that seemed like Tom wouldn't mind to answer.

Plus, from what Tom had observed, Harry was a shitty actor, his eyes betraying his thoughts and emotions whenever he had any. Tom used legilimency on Harry before as well, just very slightly so that Harry would not notice, and have seen only sincereity and genuineness. Not quite like a spy's mind, it was.

In any case, Tom would never miss this chance of seeing Harry Potter in a duel. He always wondered about the young boy's powers. He heard many rumors about it being extremely powerful, and he himself had sensed the power whenever he was near Harry, but he had never seen it in execution.

Tom strolled down the hallways, and climbed up the stairs to Harry's classroom. When he was almost there, however, his good mood suddenly plummetted at the sight in front of him.

 

Draco Malfoy was standing close to Harry, and they were talking about something. Harry was laughing, throwing his head back.

Tom felt an unbelievably strong urge to go and separate the two, but he managed to stop himself. He was going to look like a maniac if he had done that. Instead, he hid behind the corners, cast a eavesdropping charm and listened to their conversation. His grip around his wand tightened until his knuckles went white.

 

Today was Tom's overhearing day, apparently.

 

"-lieve bloddy Frenchmen, what is with you people?" That was Harry.

 

"I'm an Englishman raised in France. So only a half-frenchman, if you'd let me." Draco's voice was laced with a smirk. Smug bastard.

 

"Well, Mr. half-Frenchman, it was nice talking to you. What were you doing here, anyways? Dungeons are way down there."

 

"To see that beautiful face of yours, bien sûr."

 

Tom almost scoffed out loud. What was that weasel doing? As far as Tom observed, Draco seemed to be attracted to Harry yet restrained himself from doing anything about it because he was prejudiced against impure bloods. Tom did not know what made Draco to be so forward, all of a sudden, after weeks of curt and indifferent attitude towards Harry.

Whatever the reason was, Tom was furious.

 

"My god, Draco!" Harry giggled. "Go away. I don't care anymore. Shoo."

 

"As you wish. Au revoir, Harry."

 

"Au revoir!"

 

Tom heard Draco walking away, fortunately, away from Tom. He did not want to face Draco now, for he was sure that he would have punched that little ferret at the spot. Which wouldn't have helped with Tom's reputation, no. After Tom waited for some time, he went back to where he found Harry with Draco. Harry was not there, but Tom could see Harry's messy black hair inside his classroom.

 

Tom knocked on the open classroom door.

 

"Wha- Tom! Hi. What are you doing here?" Harry asked, glad to see him yet confused.

 

"Hi, Harry. I wanted to talk to you about the duelling club." Tom said. He looked closely at Harry's face and body, looking for clues that showed any inappropriate contact with Malfoy. Disheveled hair as usual, shirt with the first two buttons opened showing Harry's pale skin harboring no sign of an intruder.

 

"The duelling club, right, how did you know about that?" Harry was now turned around, showing Tom his back. He was busily going through his materials on his desk.

 

"One of my students told me." Unintentionally. Tom did not say the last word out loud. Instead, he moved closer to Harry.

 

Harry didn't notice Tom's advance. He answered. "Of course they did. I- the fifth years wanted me to open a duelling club, and as a DADA professor, what choice do I have? I love the idea of duelling clubs, too. I once made one back in school, you know. You wouldn't know about it because you weren't here, but-"

 

"Dumbledore's Army. Yes, they told me about that too." Tom said, standing right before Harry. He was so close to the younger boy that he was sure Harry could feel his breath on his neck.

 

"-Oh, all rig- Tom?" Harry, sensing Tom's proximity, turned around and faced Tom.

 

The height difference was perfect, Tom thought. Harry was looking up at Tom, through his long eyelashes, his beautiful green eyes blinking in confusion. Harry was blushing, due to how close they were, and the rosiness on his cheeks were so kissable. Along with the impossibly red, plump lips that Tom could just devour as a whole in his mouth without much effort.

 

They were so close, they could hear each other's breath.

 

"Tom?" Harry said once more, voice trembling a bit. Tom was mind-blowingly handsome, with his chiselled looks and his burgundy eyes always filled with arrogance.

 

This time, it was filled with something that Harry could only define as lust. And anger.

 

Tom looked down at the little boy, so beautiful and so innocent. For the past month and a half, he was waiting, like a hunter waiting for its prey, for Harry to trust Tom so that the moment Harry did, he could take Harry's mind and body in a heartbeat. Just like the prey feeling ignorantly secured in the midst of the hunter's trap.

But it seemed like he should move a bit quicker, if he wanted to claim ownership before anyone else came in to snatch it away.

 

Harry tried to step back for a bit, when Tom, noticing Harry's movements, held Harry's arms with both of his hands, drawing them closer.

 

"T- what-" Harry felt like the places where Tom caught Harry were burning.

 

Tom said nothing, but stared at Harry's eyes. His gaze then glided over to Harry's nose, cheek, and lips. Tom's grip loosened, as he raised one of his hands to touch Harry's cheek with his palm. Harry could not look away from the intense look Tom was giving to the younger boy.

 

Slowly, Tom moved down to meet Harry's lips.

 

They both were closing their eyes with their lips almost brushing against one another, when a sudden cough came from the classroom door.

 

Both of them were startled, their eyes were wide open. They both looked at the door and found Mcgonagall, face indifferent as if she hadn't witnessed anything of importance.

 

"Mr. Potter," said Mcgonagall. "Madam Hooch needs assistance in her flying lessons for a couple of months, for she is busy with her personal matter for the moment. She recommended Mr. Potter for the place. What do you think?"

 

"-Um, prof- what?" Harry didn't get half of what she just said.

 

Mcgonagall's face did not move a muscle, but Harry thought he could see a ghost of a smirk on her mouth.

 

"Mr. Potter, Madam Hooch needs assistance. Will you do it?" She repeated.

 

"Madam Hooch, of course, sure, prof- professor. of course. My pleasure, that is," stuttered Harry. He was bright red, deeply embarrassed.

 

"Good. I will let her know. Class schedule will be sent your way, and you will see it wouldn't be too much of a burden, as she is still taking care of the majority of the classes."

 

"Got it, professor."

 

Mcgonagall gave the both of them a nod, and then, just as it seemed like she was going to just go away without commenting on the elephant in the room, she said:

 

"Next time, close the door."

 

Harry felt like his face just exploded. He took a glance at Tom, who was smirking without a single sign of embarrassment. Prat.

 

Mcgonagall went away, without expecting any answers from them.

 

"Harry." As soon as she disappeared, deep, velvet voice came near the younger boy. Harry blushed. Tom was about to kiss him, and Harry did not know what Tom meant with his kiss. Whatever he meant, Harry was deeply engrossed in the almost-kiss. Tom was so captivating, with his beautiful face combined with a mysterious, somewhat cruel air of his eyes and his demeanor. And it was that Tom who was standing just milimetres apart from Harry, and who just tried to kiss him with his burgundy eyes full of lust. 

He could not meet Tom in his eyes.

 

"Tom." He answered, instead.

 

"Harry, I have to go now." Tom said. Tom did not want to go, leaving Harry like this, all flushed and... cute. But he had class in a couple of minutes. "I have class." He explained.

 

"Right, yes, I'll... I'll see you later." Harry said, nodding and still not looking at Tom.

 

Tom took Harry's chin in his hand, making the raven haired boy to look at him. The possessive rage that drove him moments before was a bit subdued thanks to the interruption. Still, they were standing very close to each other, and Tom's hand was holding Harry's whole face. It was not helping with Tom's desires at all. But deplorably, Tom was running out of time.

 

Tom lowered his head, and met Harry's lips with his own. Despite their overwhelming tension, the kiss was nothing more than just a gentle peck.

 

"I can't do any further. I need to be presentable in front of the class." Tom said. Harry was blushing, but he was not avoiding Tom's eyes now.

 

"But how I want to, you can't even imagine," added Tom, voice turning into almost a whisper. "You should thank Mcgonagall for interrupting us."

 

Harry did not say anything, but continued looking up at Tom's eyes. Then, when Tom let go of his grip of Harry's face, Harry lifted his feet slightly, pecking Tom on his cheek. Not expecting that, Tom was surprised a bit at first, but soon smirked. Of course, Harry would do something like that, how adorable.

 

"See you at dinner, then." Tom said, walking backwards to the door and facing Harry. They were both smiling now.

 

"See you." Harry answered.

 

As Tom walked back to his classroom, he touched his cheek where Harry kissed him.