Title: Good Evening, Mr Malfoy
Fandom: Harry Potter
Pairings: Harry Potter/Draco Malfoy
Word Count: 877
Warnings: Bit of blood, well ok technically Harry is really injured but, this is meant to be light-hearted and it was for circumstance, not ‘OMG Harry’s dying’.
Prompt: For my ‘Polite’ tile on GYWO Bingo.
Author’s Notes: I don’t think this one turned out too badly. Originally, ‘polite’ was going to refer to Malfoy, but when he answered the door it didn’t feel right, so...anyway, just read the darn thing and find out, lol.
Summary: Harry needs help late one night after a disastrous auror mission. Malfoy lives nearby, and Harry can’t think of a logical reason he shouldn't ask for help.
Malfoy takes a long time to answer his door after Harry knocks.
Harry doesn't know what type of wards he uses, but he'd bet they're just as paranoid as the wizard that cast them. He half suspects Malfoy won't open the door at all because he knows who's waiting on the other side. Why would he? The hour is inexcusably late, and Harry is standing there dripping blood on his doorstep. It’s very rude. But he's losing a lot of blood through the hole in his arm and he lost his wand -- fuckers -- so he doesn't have much choice when he knows a wizard in the area. There's no point in complicating his situation by going in search of other help.
Eventually -- surprisingly -- the light above him flicks on. Malfoy somehow makes even this action, hidden though he is by his pale wooden door, irritable. The sound of muggle locks and security chains jangle, then the door swings open. After all that kerfuffle, Malfoy obviously has no doubt he can handle any threats loitering in his front garden.
"What?" he snarls, wand jabbing at Harry's chest. He catches sight of the flow of blood running down Harry's bare arm and dripping onto the slate stones beneath his grubby, shoeless feet.
"Good evening. Might I use your fireplace, Mr Malfoy?" Harry asks politely, falling back on his auror diplomacy training to make this as smooth as possible. Malfoy's eyes squeeze together further, clearly unimpressed.
"It's three in the morning."
"I do apologise, Mr Malfoy," Harry continues, trying to keep his voice low and calm. "I'm sorry to disturb you. I'm in rather a desperate situation."
"I can see that." Malfoy's eyes track down to the little pool of blood soaking into Harry's singed socks again.
"May I use your fireplace?" Harry asks again. He doesn't feel any of the old animosity towards Malfoy these days. They don't see each other often -- maybe once a year they stumble around each other at official Ministry functions, but other than that they've been rather successful in their endeavour to avoid one another. And without the constant reminders he’s grown out of it.
"That depends," Malfoy says, smiling unnervingly. He leans against the door jamb, blocking Harry's path. Not that Harry has the means or the energy to force his way in right now anyway.
"On?" Harry should have known Malfoy would want to barter favours even when he's about to black out from bloodloss.
"What will I get out of this arrangement?"
Harry smiles chirpily, bouncing merrily on his toes once with a peppiness he doesn't feel. "The Ministry's eternal gratitude, sir." A drop of blood catches on the end of his index finger, tingles, before it falls. Harry's smile strains.
"I think I'll need something a little more..." Malfoy pauses to consider. "Concrete, Auror Potter."
"Monetary compensation, while frowned upon, is a possibility if you file the correct claims forms with the auror department."
"How about something on a more personal level."
Why does Malfoy always have to be so cryptic? Harry feels far too tired for this. Keeping up with Malfoy's mental games is exhausting at the best of times.
"Let me put this as simply as I can,” Malfoy continues. “I'd like to make an agreement with you personally. We'll both sign the accord and then you may use my fireplace."
If he could feel both of his arms, Harry would throw them up in surrender. "Fine, whatever." He stops, because that doesn't sound like something his diplomacy training would condone. "Of course, Mr Malfoy. If that's what you want." Harry smothers a yawn in the scrappy fabric of his shoulder. "What will I owe you?"
Malfoy considers him silently. Then, without warning, he reaches up and plucks Harry's dirt-smothered glasses from his face. He lifts a bottom corner of his expensive silken dressing gown and wipes systematically at the lenses. His gaze never wavers from Harry's face. Then he pushes them gently back onto Harry's nose. It leaves a disgusting stain on the cloth that's never going to come out.
"How about a date, Auror Potter?"
"A date," Malfoy repeats, the paleness of his irises twinkling mischievously. "Would you sacrifice an evening in exchange for my fireplace."
Harry swallows loudly. It echoes in his ears. "I'm sure-" His voice cracks embarrassingly. He coughs once, convincing himself it's because he's so tired. "I'm sure that can be arranged."
"Where will you take me?"
"Mr Malfoy," Harry huffs, because -- while Malfoy may be enjoying this -- there are literally black spots dancing around the edges of Harry's vision, and he should probably be getting to a healer about now. "While I appreciate that you're investing an evening here as well, I would very much like to see a healer at some point in the near future. It may have escaped your notice, but I am bleeding out on your doorstep."
"It hadn't." Malfoy sighs. "Well, you had better come in then." He sweeps his wand behind him, no doubt setting up protection charms on his expensive carpets. "It's a good job I was thinking of overhauling the decor out here anyway."
"Thank you, Mr Malfoy," Harry says, as he follows Malfoy into his home. "The Ministry appreciates your cooperation."