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PostPosted: Sun May 26, 2024 5:16 am 

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The closeness of the embrace and the tenderness og the kiss sent a shiver down Harry's spine, and he wanted to cry. Nobody had ever been as attentive to Harry's guilt as Draco was, how easily and readily he soothed over Harry's ingrained sense of responsability and blame; he didn't know how to put into words just how much hearkng it seemed to fix something broken within him.
"Draco, I -"
For how many times Harry had felt it, this was the closest he had come to ever saying it. The confession caugh in his throat and curdled on his lips. Saying it in a moment of ditress rather than affection felt selfish, and so, Harry didn't say it, but instead held it close to his heart instead.
Removing his face from the crook of Draco's neck, Harry hooked his chin overtop of his shoulder, peering aimlessly out to the study as he tried to regain the ability to form coherent sentences.
"It's not your fault, either," he said instead, knowing that was what Draco deserved to hear in that moment, not something that would inevitably add to his guilt. "Even if your notes -"


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PostPosted: Wed May 29, 2024 12:19 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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While Draco had known that he loved Harry for so long now that he could barely remember a time that he didn’t, this was the first time he had wanted to say it out loud. He knew that it wouldn’t help anything, if anything it would probably just make it worse, but with knowing just how bad things were now Draco couldn’t help but selfishly want Harry to know.
“Thank you,” was what he settled on instead, not feeling like he had the right to burden Harry with his feelings when they were in a shared moment of distress. He was genuinely thankful to Harry for saying it, even if he didn’t really believe it.
“I’ll figure this out,” he promised, not wanting to promise to fix it because a part of him knew that they were far beyond that.

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PostPosted: Wed May 29, 2024 2:34 pm 

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Throughout this whole process, Harry had regarded Draco’s work and ability with everything between blind trust and professional scepticism, but for the first time, Harry was struck with a sinking feeling of doubt.
It mixed together with the bloom of love somewhere deep in the pit of his stomach, and Harry could almost not bear to hear the promise in Draco’s voice, loving him too much to ever want to pin that entire expectation onto him.
His hands brushed across Draco’s jaw a little clumsily and onto his hair, trying to stop them from shaking.
“It’s okay,” he reassured as he stretched towards Draco, an early absolution of responsibility, before closing the distance entirely and pressing a kiss to Draco’s lips.


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PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2024 3:10 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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It wasn’t okay and Draco knew deep within himself that it wasn’t going to be okay any time soon.
Still he tightened his grip around Harry, returning the kiss with a passion that he hoped would convey just how sorry he was, and maybe, selfishly, how much he loved him.
A part of him knew that there was no way that he could fix this. Even without having all of the facts just yet, he knew that this was extremely bad news and he wanted to make the most of it while he could still have Harry.

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PostPosted: Thu May 30, 2024 3:54 pm 

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Harry almost sobbed at the force with which Draco returned the kiss, so pitifully in love with him that he could almost convince himself that they had had an entirely different conversation. Often enough had Harry wished everything had turned out different, but after years of an almost normal life, this loss wrecked through him in a way he couldn’t ever have expected.
Desperately clutching at Draco’s hair, Harry begged him to stay close, everything suddenly feeling to ****ing fleeting.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 01, 2024 10:40 am 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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____
Despite having not wanting to be parted from Harry, Draco had sent him home so he could get to his notes and hopefully figure out what was going on. He had a very good idea of what he was going to find out and the idea of doing that while Harry was still around was almost too much for him to bear.
The conclusion had come out exactly as he feared, and it was with a deep seated nausea and a lump in his throat that Draco approached Harry’s office; unsure if he was going to be able to say what he needed to say but he knew that Harry deserved to know.
He did a courtesy knock but he was sure that Harry was going to be in there, likely alone, so he didn’t wait for a response and simply entered.
It was with both relief and anxiety that Draco concluded that he was right and that Harry indeed was alone in his office.
“Hi,” he started out, mostly trying to test out his voice.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 01, 2024 2:30 pm 

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Harry hadn’t been able to fall asleep that night and was feeling the consequences of it now. It had already been a while since he had been working anything that resembled full hours, despite faithfully being at his office within office hours.
When Draco knocked and entered, Harry had been nursing a headache at his desk, drawing mindless scribbles on a scrap piece of parchment. Harry glanced up at him, feeling himself teetering on a cliff-side at the sombre look on Draco’s expression.
“Hey,” Harry said, already breathless.
Though he immediately moved to stand, he still did so slowly, hands lingering on the armrest for a beat, a little hesitant in the face of what was to come. Finally stepping away from his chair, Harry stalled halfway around his desk. He opened his mouth to speak, but didn’t even know what to ask. “So?”


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 02, 2024 4:28 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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As happy as Draco was to see Harry, it still filled him with a dreaded sense of nausea. He knew exactly what needed to be done and what he needed to say, but he desperately didn’t want to do so.
“It’s not good,” he stated, wanting to look anything but Harry but he also felt that he couldn’t get himself to look away. After all, Harry deserved to know what was going on and they couldn’t stay in this limbo forever, but Draco knew exactly what had to happen once they were done and he was preemptively mourning one of the best things he had ever had.
“I was right,” he said, having even had to rehearse what he wanted to say to Harry, knowing just how difficult it was going to be for him.
“I can go into the details if you want, but I am making you sicker.”

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2024 4:30 pm 

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It was suddenly very hard to swallow; though Harry probably already knew, the confirmation still felt like a blow to the gut. Lying restless in bed last night, Harry had looked back on the year, and how good Draco had been to him through it. It felt so paradoxical that he, somehow, could have been bad for him at the same time. Terribly, horribly unfair, too.
A little rattled, Harry nodded, a dazed little motion.
“Yeah,” he said, having to clear his throat to even get that out. “Please do.”


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 10, 2024 4:17 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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“Right,” Draco stated, not really surprised that Harry would want his entire explanation, but somehow still feel woefully unprepared to actually provide said explanation.
It made him feel sick that he had been making Harry worse, knowing that he had allowed himself to really fall for him, even if he hadn’t been able to say it out loud, and now that was going to be taken away from him as well.
“So, the horcrux you were carrying has left a small sliver of the Dark Lord’s energy within you,” he stated, still feeling sick to his stomach but finding that switching into his more academic tone made it all easier to stomach.
“Not a lot mind you, not enough to show up in anything crucial,” he added, knowing just how Harry was going to take that fact.
“My working theory is that the remains of the failed horcrux attempt at Towthorpe has triggered that sliver in you and it probably would have gone away by itself again-“ he steeled himself, not really wanting to say his next words out loud “-if it wasn’t for the fact that you suddenly started spending time around another sliver of him.”

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 12, 2024 2:37 pm 

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Draco’s words washed over Harry like water, dull and cold and all-encompassing. Deep down, he had already known, removing any ounce of surprise from his reaction. He just felt like death, his expression already softening into a placid familiarity.
It took Draco’s last addition for Harry’s brow to furrow, the placement of guilt causing a visceral reaction within him.
“Wha- do you mean you?” he blurted despite having understood Draco perfectly the first time round. Harry’s eyes skimmed over Draco’s expression, his own shifting into a pained realisation. “Your mark - Draco, is that what’s been hurting?”


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2024 11:56 am 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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Draco nodded dully at that, feeling awful about the things that he had to tell Harry, almost as if the act of him saying the words out loud meant that they became his fault. It made him sick to his stomach but he knew that he had to get everything out such that Harry would know everything to its entirety.
“My mark, yeah,” he stated, feeling his world collapse with everything he had to share with Harry.
“I tried to hard to remove every single trace of him, but-“ he cut himself off, his throat growing painfully tight as he tried to keep a hold of his emotions.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 23, 2024 7:32 am 

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Not for the first time, Harry felt incredibly small. The cosmic weight of his life, how inevitable it all was, still, and how little agency he ever seemed to have crashed over him like exhaustion. The added nuance that hurting Draco was inevitable, too, made Harry want to cry; he felt 16 in a bathroom all over again.
“If -” Harry started, forcing himself out of that pit, desperately needing an assurance that this time it would be different. Harry’s voice wasn’t one of blame, but of fragile expectation. “If that’s what’s been wrong with me, you can figure out how to fix it, right?”


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 26, 2024 3:59 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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There was nothing in the world that Draco wanted more than to be able to say yes. He wanted it so badly that it almost made him sick, wanting to hold Harry close and convince him that it would be fine and that he would fix this.
However, for the first time since Harry had shown up on his doorstep, Draco knew that there was nothing he could do about this.
It made him want to scream and cry, wanting to curse the universe for giving him such happiness only to snatch it away again from him so violently.
“I can’t,” he stated, breath catching in his throat, looking briefly at Harry but having to look away again; unable to handle the soft look of expectation on his face.
“The dark magic is so close to your heart by now, removal would be dangerous, but further exposure to dark magic will absolutely kill you.”

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 26, 2024 4:29 pm 

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Draco was making such an effort in keeping his words professional, and still it didn’t manage to soften the blow. Hidden between it all, Draco was finally telling Harry that this was killing him, and still, comparatively, that barely registered within him. It was something else entirely that struck him somewhere between his ribs, leaving him hollow.
“Exposure?” he asked, though he already knew what Draco meant.
Harry’s eyes flickered across his features, so desperate for him to ****ing look at him during this that he almost sobbed with the sheer frustration and loss of it all, everything pre-emptively condensed into that single moment. “Draco-”


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 08, 2024 1:38 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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There was nothing more heartbreaking to Draco than hearing just how small Harry sounded, a little too aware of just how damaging these news had to be to him.
Trying to gather up what little courage he had, Draco looked up at Harry, feeling his guts churn with everything that he wanted to say; things he knew that he would never get to say to Harry now and that he was hating himself for never saying before.
“It’s dangerous for you to be around me,” he stated, trying to keep as cool and calm as he could, if only to stop himself from sobbing into Harry’s robes.
“My recommendation would be that you avoid magic as much as possible, as you cannot be sure how much dark magic you will be exposed to at any given time,” he stated, finding that professionalism only just saved him from falling apart. “I, of course, can’t force you one way or the other, and I will be sharing my findings with your primary healer at st. Mungos, such that you can make a decision together.”

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 09, 2024 2:20 pm 

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Draco actually meeting his eye turned out to be devastating, even more so accompanied with the almost clinical, sounding eerily as if Draco was discharging him as a patient. Harry wanted to sob, but Draco’s matter-of-factly explanations were enough of a shock to his system to keep the tears abay.
“All magic - people, too?”
The encouragement to avoid magic, both immaterial and material, while standing in his Ministry office, arguably one of Britain’s most thoroughly magical spaces, made the room feel even smaller and more suffocating.
Harry stepped forward, an instinct to find Draco in the sea that was his office.
“There must be something before it comes to that,” he tried, voice fragile with the effort of sounding convincingly doubtful of Draco’s diagnosis, even when everything in him felt wired to trust him blindly. “That can’t be how this -” we, screamed something within him “- ends.”


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 10, 2024 2:00 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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Draco stood brutally still, part of him wanting to step away from Harry, the idea of harming him further making Draco so nauseous that it was a miracle that he hadn’t sicked up yet, but he also knew that if he moved at all, the risk of him pulling Harry close was too great.
“I’m sorry,” he stated, eyes fixed on Harry as he tried to soften the blow for the both of them. Even if Draco had known since last night and had been working through the facts, he so desperately wanted to believe that there was something he could do.
“If I had made this connection earlier, maybe there would be something I could do, but as it is now there is nothing to do,” he said, knowing that giving them hope like that would be foolish at best and cruel at worst.
“So yes, this unfortunately involves people too,” he said, especially me, he didn’t add, though it was on the tip of his tongue.

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 10, 2024 2:47 pm 

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Something fragile and doomed must have been visible on Harry’s expression as he tried to process the almost unfathomable task of having to distance himself from everything and everybody he knew. His eyes flickered between Draco’s, unable to properly find any footing.
Immense as it was, it was the very tangible sight and feel of Draco’s guilt and remorse that felt the most heartbreaking.
“Draco -” Harry said, pleaded, because he heard the unsaid.
He stepped forward again, raising his hand towards Draco. Despite everything Draco had just told him, Harry desperately needed him close. “You couldn’t have known.”


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 11, 2024 3:03 pm 

This body is a vessel for my mayhem and as long as I can perform bafoonery it doesn’t matter if this stomach is flat or not

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Despite everything within him wishing that he could do otherwise, Draco took a step back, feeling everything in him scream to get closer to Harry and never ever let him go again. Draco felt that he had already done enough damage to Harry’s situation and as much as it pained him, he couldn’t allow himself to take further risks with his health.
“I should have,” Draco stated, finding that everything was so painfully obvious now in hindsight.
“I should have connected these dots ages ago, but because I didn’t-“ he cut himself off, not even able to think the thought that Harry was going to die, finding it far too cruel a fate to live in a world without Harry in it.
“I’m so sorry Harry, but even this-“ he indicated the space between the two of them “-I fear might be too much. I just thought you deserved to hear it from me.”

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