Draco knew since the first time they met each other at the Hogwart’s express that they were not just any arch enemies. And when Harry turned down his invitation to be friends, it only made it harder for Draco to resist him. There was something about Potter. Maybe it was his edginess or his determination to protect the truth that disgusted Draco. How could the guy be this virtuous? It went against everything Draco’s been taught since childhood. Standing in front of the Boy’s washroom mirror, Draco stared at his pale reflection. He knew that Harry had been following him this whole year using that wretched Marauder’s map.
For Harry, Draco had always been the boy set on ruining his happiness. As he rushed towards the bathroom, latent thoughts resurfaced his mind again. Since the start of their sixth year at Hogwarts, Draco had lost himself. He always looked nervous and kept peeping over his shoulder. Harry recalled the day he met Draco at the Diagon alley in Madame Malkin’s shop. Though the guy talked a lot and had offensive opinions, somewhere deep down he knew that this boy wasn’t as evil as his family. He just was never given a choice.
On reaching the bathroom door, he heard Moaning Myrtle consoling Draco. Out of nowhere, Harry abruptly recounted that one time in the Care of Magical Creatures class when Draco had scrutinized him. His heart skipped a beat. What was happening to him? He had broken up with Ginny to protect her from harm’s way but was there some other reason lurking beneath? And why is it that during the Yule Ball, he kept looking over to where Draco was and thought how beautiful he looked in that suit?
For long, Draco’s father (his biggest safeguard) made him loathe Potter and he unquestioningly obliged. Draco had never examined the workings of his family but since the last few months, he had started gaining some clarity.
Realizing that Harry had been listening; Draco drew out his wand shouting, “Cruciatus!” Harry dodged it and retaliated with “Sectumsempra!” causing blood to splatter around Draco. Harry stood there, stunned by what he had done to him.
Then one day while searching for Horcruxes, Harry, Ron, and Hermione got surrounded by Snatchers and were brought to the Malfoy Manor. Sitting in front of Draco, with the scar painting excruciatingly, Harry saw no hope. “Don’t worry Potter” Draco’s whispered, his eyes piercing Harry’s soul. Draco gulped and then said firmly “It’s not him!” He didn’t care anymore. He never really wanted to be a part of the Death Eaters. It was all a hoax he created in front of the entire world so that he could feel safe knowing that his entire life hadn’t been a lie. He knew how excited his father was at the prospect of being the one to hand Harry over to the dark lord and redeem himself. And in that bizarre moment, they fell for each other.
Though they both were unsure of their feelings, the wizarding world was going through much turmoil for them to care about their own lives. One of the Horcruxes left resided in the Room of Requirement where Harry and Draco met yet again. When Harry saw Draco’s end was certain to come through the Fiendfyre, he just couldn’t pretend anymore.
“I’ve got to save him.” He told his friends and went back to get Malfoy on his broom as they both flew across and out of the room. They crashed hard onto the floor but all Harry could think about was how tightly Draco was holding his hand. Draco stared at him and muttered “Harry” before sprinting away. The way Draco said his name echoed in him for a long time after it.
Over the following days, Harry felt Draco softening around him. The hatred and jealousy that Draco had developed over the years for Harry was melting as he gradually realized all the conditioning being done on him since childhood. Harry, on the other hand, was too strained with thinking about Draco all time. He had to fight Voldemort who was getting closer than ever.
And then came the duel between good and evil. The land had separated in two and it was at that moment that something clicked inside Draco. He had supported evil for far too long. If anyone, he should be willing to bear the repercussions of his deeds. He walked across the silent crowd and over to Harry’s side. Harry didn’t say anything but the two of them momentarily touched hands before letting go.
After having won the duel, Draco went over to Harry. “I don’t know what to say, Potter.”
“There’s nothing left to say. I think we know what has to be done.” Harry marched towards Draco. Draco closed his eyes in fear for what’s to come but all he got was a warm feeling on his lips.
Written by Ksheerja Pandey for MTTN
Edited by Asma Abidin for MTTN
Featured Artwork by Sepsku on Deviantart
Artwork by Merlin