“You should fuck her to make her realize she’s gay.” He said this about me during a cast and crew “meet and greet” before we began filming, X Men: The Last Stand. I was eighteen years old. He looked at a woman standing next to me, ten years my senior, pointed to me and said: “You should fuck her to make her realize she’s gay.” He was the film’s director, Brett Ratner.
I was a young adult who had not yet come out to myself. I knew I was gay, but did not know, so to speak. I felt violated when this happened. I looked down at my feet, didn’t say a word and watched as no one else did either. This man, who had cast me in the film, started our months of filming at a work event with this horrific, unchallenged plea. He “outed” me with no regard for my well-being, an act we all recognize as homophobic. I proceeded to watch him on set say degrading things to women. I remember a woman walking by the monitor as he made a comment about her “flappy pussy”.
We are all entitled to come into an awareness of our sexual orientation privately and on our own terms. I was young and although already a working actor for so long I had in many ways been insulated, growing up on film sets instead of surrounded by my peers. This public, aggressive outing left me with long standing feelings of shame, one of the most destructive results of homophobia. Making someone feel ashamed of who they are is a cruel manipulation, designed to oppress and repress. I was robbed of more than autonomy over my ability to define myself. Ratner’s comment replayed in my mind many times over the years as I encountered homophobia and coped with feelings of reluctance and uncertainty about the industry and my future in it. The difference is that I can now assert myself and use my voice to to fight back against the insidious queer and transphobic attitude in Hollywood and beyond. Hopefully having the position I have, I can help people who may be struggling to be accepted and allowed to be who they are –to thrive. Vulnerable young people without my advantages are so often diminished and made to feel they have no options for living the life they were meant to joyously lead.
I got into an altercation with Brett at a certain point. He was pressuring me, in front of many people, to don a t-shirt with “Team Ratner” on it. I said no and he insisted. I responded, “I am not on your team.” Later in the day, producers of the film came to my trailer to say that I “couldn’t talk like that to him.” I was being reprimanded, yet he was not being punished nor fired for the blatantly homophobic and abusive behavior we all witnessed. I was an actor that no one knew. I was eighteen and had no tools to know how to handle the situation.
I have been a professional actor since the age of ten. I’ve had the good fortune to work with many honorable and respectful collaborators both behind and in front of the camera. But the behavior I’m describing is ubiquitous. They (abusers), want you to feel small, to make you insecure, to make you feel like you are indebted to them, or that your actions are to blame for their unwelcome advances.
When I was sixteen a director took me to dinner (a professional obligation and a very common one). He fondled my leg under the table and said, “You have to make the move, I can’t.” I did not make the move and I was fortunate to get away from that situation. It was a painful realization: my safety was not guaranteed at work. An adult authority figure for whom I worked intended to exploit me, physically. I was sexually assaulted by a grip months later. I was asked by a director to sleep with a man in his late twenties and to tell them about it. I did not. This is just what happened during my sixteenth year, a teenager in the entertainment industry.
Look at the history of what’s happened to minors who’ve described sexual abuse in Hollywood. Some of them are no longer with us, lost to substance abuse and suicide. Their victimizers? Still working. Protected even as I write this. You know who they are; they’ve been discussed behind closed doors as often as Weinstein was. If I, a person with significant privilege, remain reluctant and at such risk simply by saying a person’s name, what are the options for those who do not have what I have?
Let’s remember the epidemic of violence against women in our society disproportionately affects low income women, particularly women of color, trans and queer women and indigenous women, who are silenced by their economic circumstances and profound mistrust of a justice system that acquits the guilty in the face of overwhelming evidence and continues to oppress people of color. I have the means to hire security if I feel threatened. I have the wealth and insurance to receive mental health care. I have the privilege of having a platform that enables me to write this and have it published, while the most marginalized do not have access to such resources. The reality is, women of color, trans and queer and indigenous women have been leading this fight for decades (forever actually). Marsha P. Johnson, Sylvia Rivera, Winona LaDuke, Miss Major, Audre Lorde, bell hooks, to name a few. Misty Upham fought tirelessly to end violence against indigenous women, domestic workers and undocumented women. Misty was found dead at the bottom of a cliff three years ago. Her father, Charles Upham, just made a Facebook post saying she was raped at a party by a Miramax executive. The most marginalized have been left behind. As a cis, white lesbian, I have benefited and have the privileges I have, because of these extraordinary and courageous individuals who have led the way and risked their lives while doing so. White supremacy continues to silence people of color, while I have the rights I have because of these leaders. They are who we should be listening to and learning from.
These abusers make us feel powerless and overwhelmed by their empire. Let’s not forget the sitting Supreme Court justice and President of the United States. One accused of sexual harassment by Anita Hill, whose testimony was discredited. The other proudly describing his own pattern of assault to an entertainment reporter. How many men in the media – titans of industry - need to be exposed for us to understand the gravity of the situation and to demand the fundamental safety and respect that is our right?
Bill Cosby was known to be predatory. The crimes were his, but many were complicit. Many more chose to look the other way. Harvey was known to be predatory. The crimes were his, but many were complicit. Many more chose to look the other way. We continue to celebrate filmmaker Roman Polanski, who was convicted of drugging and anally raping a young girl and who fled sentencing. A fugitive from justice. I’ve heard the industry decry Weinstein’s behavior and vow to affect meaningful change. But let’s be truthful: the list is long and still protected by the status quo. We have work to do. We cannot look the other way.
I did a Woody Allen movie and it is the biggest regret of my career. I am ashamed I did this. I had yet to find my voice and was not who I am now and felt pressured, because “of course you have to say yes to this Woody Allen film.” Ultimately, however, it is my choice what films I decide to do and I made the wrong choice. I made an awful mistake.
I want to see these men have to face what they have done. I want them to not have power anymore. I want them to sit and think about who they are without their lawyers, their millions, their fancy cars, houses upon houses, their “playboy” status and swagger.
What I want the most, is for this to result in healing for the victims. For Hollywood to wake up and start taking some responsibility for how we all have played a role in this. I want us to reflect on this endemic issue and how this power dynamic of abuse leads to an enormous amount of suffering. Violence against women is an epidemic in this country and around the world. How is this cascade of immorality and injustice shaping our society? One of the greatest risks to a pregnant woman’s health in the United States is murder. Trans women of color in this country have a life expectancy of thirty-five. Why are we not addressing this as a society? We must remember the consequences of such actions. Mental health issues, suicide, eating disorders, substance abuse, to name a few.
What are we afraid to say and why can’t we say it? Women, particularly the most marginalized, are silenced, while powerful abusers can scream as loudly as they want, lie as much as they want and continue to profit through it all.
This is a long awaited reckoning. It must be. It’s sad that“codes of conduct” have to be enforced to ensure we experience fundamental human decency and respect. Inclusion and representation are the answer. We’ve learned that the status quo perpetuates unfair, victimizing behavior to protect and perpetuate itself. Don’t allow this behavior to be normalized. Don’t compare wrongs or criminal acts by their degrees of severity. Don’t allow yourselves to be numb to the voices of victims coming forward. Don’t stop demanding our civil rights. I am grateful to anyone and everyone who speaks out against abuse and trauma they have suffered. You are breaking the silence. You are revolution.
In the large mansion, isolated from the bustling
city, a place was covered in mystery, a place was covered in death. On these grounds, an atmosphere
so thick laid like a blanket around the house, suffocating the people in it.
One shouts so loud that the people outside-
the butler, chef, and gardener- cringe in hurt. They know what is real. They
pack their backs and get ready to get out. They know what is happening. One,
sadly, is still shrouded from it.
William shouts as loud as his lungs could
Celine? Come out! You got me! This was an elaborate prank, you got me, now,
At first, it was a call for them, come on, pleasepleasepleasecomeout. No one’s dead,
right? But as time went on, it was becoming a chant. A chant of his heart,
for his mind, to keep working, keep moving, keep calling. They’re not dead.
They’re playing a prank.
“Come on William.” He whispered to himself,
fiddling with his lenses. “Don’t lose it. Don’t lose it. D-Don’t…” He
swallowed, a sharp short pain in his dry throat. “They’re not dead. Come on!
A voice calls from his back, and he looked at the
corner of his eyes. A cracked mirror.
His friend, reflected on the smooth, jagged surface. A look of anger, vengeance, burning. “Stop.”
understand, Mark.” He grits out in a faux happy tune, but both knew it was
fake as it can get. “Those two- they were— are, my friends. For years! And you know they love pranks. They’ve got to
get out soon!”
The other man steps forward, and it was
only this time did William register the familiar cane in his hands. A surge of
disbelief ran through him, and blindly, as if his body knew what his mind
wanted to do before it instructed him, walked briskly towards the other and
snatched the cane, clutching it close to his chest.
“This- this isn’t yours. It’s Damien’s.
Not. Not yours.” He stammered, not knowing why. Was it anger? Disbelief? Or was
he hurting already? What did it feel to hurt? “You’re not supposed to hold it.
It’s his. Mayor’s.”
“You shut your mouth!” He retaliated, hands
shaking, and he felt his body drop. ‘Stop.’
He yelled desperately in his mind, a
slow hysterical feel creeping in his internal voice. ‘Stand tall! At ease! Parade rest! God fucking-‘
A firm hand landed on his shoulder. A
familiar touch, yet not so. It felt cold, as if owner’s anger that he was
feeling was ice-hot. William blinked the tears from his eyes, and removed his
glasses, drying the tears on them. And-how peculiar was that. He was on his
knees. When was he on his knees? Did he do something wrong?
“Did I kill them?” He asked no one, no one
in particular, absolutely removing anyone around him from his midst. He was
alone in this room, wasn’t he? Or was the man behind him, no, not just a man,
Mark, behind him? “No, no, I didn’t, right? Mark’s alive?”
“Oh god. Oh god. Goodness gracious. I
thought- and Celine, and Damien, and-and-and, and Y/N, right, I didn’t kill
them?” He tried to stand, but his knees were too wobbly, and he had to balance
himself upright. “Mark, I didn’t kill them?”
Mark didn’t answer. The anger that was
projected on his face earlier waned, morphing into something drastic, pitying,
hurting, all at once. “William- I, I’m trying to tell you, please, listen-“
William’s smile grew, a painful one, and
his eyes, oh his eyes, filling up with hot tears.
“Mark, I didn’t kill them?!” He asked once
more, and he stumbled, losing grip. He stared at the cane first before looking
up at the other’s face. “T-Tell me, you’re alive?”
“I-“ Mark brought his hand up to his face,
massaging his nose. “It’s hard to explain, but yes, I am alive, but- but not in
the way that I used to be. William.” He bent down and gripped the steadily
hysterical man. “William, listen to me. I am alive. But I- I am Celine. I am
Damien. We’re both here, but- but we’re dead, William. Do you understand?”
The man stared at him, and Dark, who had
been just letting his anger reign himself in, bit his lip, seeing the absolute
pain in his eyes. Celine and Damien, in his conscious, struggled, gasped. Both
tried to control themselves to project the man they wanted to take vengeance as.
Then they heard the ramblings. The
ramblings, by god, the ramblings,
they figured out, my god, where was
their friend going?
“D-Damien in the body? C-Celine in the
body? That’s- that’s great! They’re not dead! Mark’s not alive! That’s even
greater! No one’s dead! No one’s dead! F-Fuck, no one’s dead!
However when they saw their childhood
friend break, absolutely break, Dark
knelt, and shed a few tears.
“William, please.” He looked at his friend.
The other man stood up, fast as lightning,
and shouted upwards. “No one’s dead! They’re all alive! Hah! G-Good one, good
one!” He smiled, a painstaking, hysterical, twisted, and deranged smile. “That
must be pretty harsh! To be there in there! What do you call yourselves?”
In a small, but relenting voice, he
whispered, “Dark.” And he winced at the bigger smile that took over his friend’s
face. “William, do you understand what I’m trying to say?”
“Yes!” He smiled, and- were those tears? Tears
of a man so far from reality. Tears from a man who can’t accept reality and
forged his own. Tears that signified the great loss of a man.
Dark stood up, and looked at him, with
baited breath. Celine and Damien’s friend’s sanity was long gone. In a broken
giggle, William beamed widely.
“No one’s dead! No one is dead!”
And that was the final straw for Damien. In
Dark’s mind, he paced gripped his lapels as hard as he can, and grinded out
through his teeth his words.
“He fucking did this to him! Look at him!
Fuck, Celine!” He demanded, and Celine watched his tirade, eyes widening as she
saw the anger overtake him. “He took everything away from us! He took me. I
could deal with that. He took you, and I couldn’t. But- but William! The man
was damaged enough as it is! That fucking son of a bitch-“
“Don’t Damien please me, Celine!” His voice
was getting higher. “No matter what we could do, magic arts or not, there is no
way with helping William anymore! All he sees is Dark, Mark’s face, accommodating
us, and we don’t have any way to show him that we’re here. He doesn’t
comprehend it!” He yelled, watching her reactions. “You cannot tell me that I shouldn’t destroy his work, his loved ones,
his life! Look at how he destroyed him without an ounce of thought!”
Celine bit her lip and exhaled. “Damien. I-“
A gunshot suddenly brought them out of
their reverie. Dark blinked, looking at the scene in front of him. A bullet, on
the floor, punctured. William, with a gun on his hand, looking lost, like a
child without their parents. His eyes wide, he turned a questioning look at the
other, who smiled in response.
“You weren’t responding to me.” He laughed,
and something unsettling was in his eyes. “I just wanted to check if you were
still there. With me. Alive.” He put the gun in his holster. “Y-You weren’t
moving, and I know I didn’t put a bullet in you, so you couldn’t have died- but
you weren’t moving anymore, so I figured, why not put a bullet on you?” He
chuckled even louder. “That seems to bring people alive!”
Dark chose to be silent, and Celine could
only sob in her hands, as Damien stood up tall in Dark’s subconscious,
unyielding, and hateful. He watched his childhood friend, his comrade, the man he had grew up with, the man he sought out in times of trouble, break as if he was just a plaything; crumble, as if his sanity was just an insignificant sand in the wind; and disappear into a pit of madness, right before his eyes.
Dark’s body to stand, and hug the other man, whispering reassurances that he
was alive. William would nod and whisper “No one’s dead” again and again, further angering Dark.
This was all Mark’s fault. This was all
Mark’s fault. Mark’s fault. Mark’s fault.
And he will pay.
So. What do you guys think? Hope you like it! Comments will be appreciated ahaaaa
If you're still taking headcanon requests, OTAYURI COFFEESHOP AU? Please murder me with cuteness.
Stoic barrista Otabek who who can never bring himself to say a word to Yuri, but does the cutestlatteart on Yuri’s drinks just to watch him smile at it.
The first time Otabek draws a cat for Yuri, Yuri makes the cutest noise, and immediately whips out his phone to snap a photo of his coffee, and Otabek basically falls a little in love right there and then.
No, but like seriously, Otabek spends so much time learning how to make cute latte art for Yuri, it’s low-key embarrassing. Leo totally laughs at him when he goes online to order marshmallow cats for Yuri. He pays a shit ton of money for them, but it’s all worth it when Yuri legitimately goes (๑♡⌓♡๑) at him.
Leo tries to talk Otabek into writing his number on Yuri’s takeaway cup one day because it’s getting ridiculous watching Otabek pine, and ofc, Otabek is 300% against it. They bicker a little behind the counter, and Otabek doesn’t even really realise that they’re getting a little loud, until he hisses two octaves too loudly “there’s no rule that says that I have to talk to him just because I like him” at Leo, and all Leo does is to give him a shit-eating grin.
Yuri has heard him, because ofc Yuri is behind him.
+ God Tier Blushing™ from Otabek + Yuri low-key rambling about coming to get extra marshmallows + Leo still grinning and maybe wiggling his eyebrows a little
And then, when Otabek absolutely cannot take it (it being 30% Leo being a shit, and 70% being Yuri’s face) anymore, “So are you going to go on a date with me or not?”
Neil knows how much Andrew hates it when people hide things from him. He remembers how much every reveal that he’d been lying to Andrew about his past and who he really was annoyed Andrew. He remembers how bothered Andrew was, even through the haze of his medicine, when Kevin kept the news of the Ravens switching divisions from him for so long. And he’s known for a long time that at some point he is going to have to tell Andrew that what they have is something more to him than the casual thing they both claimed they meant it to be.
So, now Neil tells Andrew right away when it’s something important. No matter what.
He figures it out in the middle of the night, after he wakes up and can’t fall back asleep. He listens to Andrew’s steady breathing and lies facing Andrew, looking at the way his hair is mussed up and how he has his entire arm crammed under his pillow, clutching it for dear life as he angles it into the perfect position. And suddenly it hits Neil like a ton of bricks.
“Andrew,” Neil says quietly.
Andrew is a light sleeper as a leftover defence mechanism, so he stirs and then blinks a few times before frowning at Neil. “What?”
“I love you,” Neil says because he does and how did he not realize it earlier? Love is not something Wesninskis are good at, but he is not a Wesninski anymore and he loves Andrew so much it hurts.
Andrew pushes the edge of his pillow into his face and then mutters, “I fucking hate you. Go back to sleep.”
But Neil knows he doesn’t. Neil knows Andrew is just grumpy and tired and putting on the usual facade.
“No. You like me,” Neil accuses.
Andrew lets the pillow fall from his face and shoots Neil a deadly look that is totally wasted on a man so head over heels in love that he sees right through Andrew’s wall of defences. “No. I hate you. What fucking time is it?”
Neil completely ignores the question as he says, “I think you might love me too.”
Andrew rolls over to check the clock because clearly he realizes Neil is not going to tell him the time, then he rolls back to face Neil and asks, “Is this really a conversation we need to have at 5:23 am?”
“I just wanted you to know,” Neil says. “I didn’t want to keep this from you. I don’t want to keep anything from you anymore.”
Andrew groans and buries his face in the pillow. Neil can’t tell if he’s upset Neil woke him up in the middle of the night to tell him he loves him or if he’s upset because Neil’s justification is working on him.
“You are the most annoying person I have ever met,” Andrew says when his face finally emerges from the pillow. “I cannot believe I’m in love with you.”
His tone says it’s an insult, but Neil is beaming anyways. Andrew really loves him back.
They don’t say it to each other again. Andrew isn’t one for repeating himself and restating the obvious. But they both know it is true thanks to their middle of the night confirmation that this is real and they both feel the same way.
Summary: As the news of the King’s death spreads throughout the land, lords and ladies from the nearby countries swarm the castle to offer condolences to the queen and her son. As the prince mourns his father, he is met with the reality that he must now choose a wife and begin his reign.
A/N: Did you catch The Hobbit (2nd movie) reference? I’ll put up the tags later. Tag list is closed!!! There is one part left :)
“Are you sure you won’t take him back this time?” Skepticism was written all over her face and it infuriated me.
“Yes, because there’s nothing to chase after. The feelings are still there but there’s no honesty, loyalty or trust anymore so what would I even be chasing? A healthy relationship cannot exist without those three things. So yeah, it’s really over and he’ll regret letting me go one day. ”
I deserve more than someone I have to chase after - Jess Amelia
And just like that all of the things I had imagined us doing together, everything I wanted to do with you, was gone and it killed me because I had always imagined that eventually, somehow, things might just work out for us. You told me you didn’t know what you wanted, you were confused, you couldn’t give me what I wanted, couldn’t commit. It hurt me, it really did, I’d been through a lot to finally get to a good place with you but then when you told me that it was too much to believe, to even try to understand. “Of course I want that with you” you told me and my heart filled with hope “just not for a long time". I just couldn’t understand, if you love someone you want them all the time, not just in the future so then I had to face the truth, the harsh reality that was staring me right in the face, that you didn’t love me and if you did, you didn’t love me enough.
I cannot settle for being half loved, I cannot wait for you anymore, even though I want to, even though walking away from this, from us, is killing me…I have to.
“Is this even real?” said Derrick marveled yet confused seeing at his reflection in the mirror
He pinched his abs that previously a blob of fat…….Grazing his finger over his now defined face that once chubby, he just can’t hold it anymore
“This is unreal” he said, tears of joy start to drop from his eyes
“I have to call Derrick and Peter to give this news” he said still crying
Fuck, I hate it when they get emotional. I guess some mental adjustment should be made. My translucent figure cannot be seen by him so I grab his head and implant some confidence and cockiness in his mind.
“Huh, those nerds can’t even get to see this,” he said, flexing his massive bicep
“Gonna post this on Snapchat and maybe I can get some hookups tonight”
Harry was sitting at his desk working. Not stealing glances at Draco every chance he could get. They had just closed a case and were filling out the paperwork. Harry finished his report and looked up. Draco was staring off into space, a small smile on his face.
“What are you so happy about?” Harry asked. Draco flushed.
Before he could answer, there was a knock on the door of their shared office space.
“Come in,” Harry called. He made a mental note to pester Draco later about his smiling and whatnot.
A woman with black hair and fancy clothes stepped in. She didn’t even glance at Harry, but instead went straight to Draco’s desk. Draco stood and greeted her with a smile. He gave the woman a hug and a delicate kiss on her cheek. Harry looked away.
“Astoria,” Draco said. “What are you doing here?”
“I was out and about in the Ministry and I thought I should come see you. Is now a good time?” She asked, glancing around at the paperwork on Draco’s desk.
Harry wanted to tell her that it was most certainly not a good time. They were very busy, thank you very much, but Draco spoke before he could.
“I’m almost done. Let me just finish this up and we can go get dinner?” Draco asked.
“That’d be lovely,” Astoria said. Draco looked over the report once more, wrote a few things down, then set his quill down.
“Harry, you wouldn’t mind sending this off for me, will you?” Draco asked.
Harry grit his teeth and without looking up said, “Sure.”
Soon, Harry heard the door open and close. He was alone. He stood to grab his and Draco’s reports. As he approached Draco’s desk, a base exploded behind him. Deep breaths, he told himself. Accidental magic hadn’t been a problem for him for a long while. But, he supposed there was a lot of firsts today.
Didn’t Draco say there wasn’t anyone special in his life? He always refused to meet anyone his mother wanted to set him up with. His family was desperate for an heir. Draco always refused, however.
Who was that girl?
A few months later…
“Harry! It was reckless. You could’ve gotten yourself killed!” Draco practically yelled. His face was red and he was running his hand through his hair. He only did that when he was extremely agitated.
“I’m fine. Look at me: not even a scratch,” Harry argued.
“You’re ridiculous. That’s it. I’m filing for another partner. I cannot do this anymore,” Draco said. He turned to his desk, but Harry grabbed his arm.
“Oh c'mon you don’t mean that. You love me as your auror partner. The risk makes it more fun,” Harry joked.
Draco huffed, “It’s not funny. One of these days, you’re going to get yourself killed and then I’ll be left to deal with the backlash and paperwork.” Harry nudged him on the shoulder.
“Okay, okay. I promise I won’t put myself in unnecessary danger anymore. It wasn’t my intention to upset you. I’m sorry,” Harry apologized. Draco was still facing away from
him, but Harry could tell he was slightly more at ease.
“Fine,” Draco said curtly. “I’m still writing in my report that you were impetuous. Don’t come crying to me when Kingsley gives you a talking down to.” He turned to sit as his desk.
Harry smiled and said, “I wouldn’t expect anything less.” Harry copied him and made it to his own desk. He began the paperwork, but was interrupted by Draco.
“I was wondering if I could ask your advice on something,” Draco said.
“Sure,” Harry said, looking up expectedly.
“Well, Astoria’s birthday is coming up, in September,” Draco said and Harry tried not to wince, he really did. “But I don’t know what to buy her. I found this bracelet, but I don’t know if it’s too much. Maybe I should look for rings.”
Harry completely froze at the word ‘rings.’ This could not be happening. Draco stood and walked to the front of Harry’s desk.
He ignored his feelings and said, “In September? It’s July right now!”
“Its august tomorrow. I only ask you because I’ve never gotten gifts for… lady friends. I figured you would know with Granger and the Weaslette,” Draco said.
“Well, that’s hardly the same,” Harry said. They weren’t dating him. Sure, Ginny and him had dating once upon a time, but he never bought her a gift during that time. Buying for your friends was different than buying for your partners.
“Isn’t it?” Draco asked confusedly.
Harry ignored him and asked, “What does the bracelet look like?” Draco brought up his wand, and a picture floated in front of Harry. It was gorgeous. There were more diamonds than Harry could count and they were all aligned in a beautiful design to form what looked to be swans.
“Swans are her favorite animal. Is this too much?” Draco asked self-consciously. All Harry could feel was dreadful. It felt like their was a fifty ton weight in his stomach.
“Oh my God. You’re in love with her,” Harry muttered. Before, Draco could answer, Harry gathered up his stuff. He couldn’t look at Draco right now, he just couldn’t.
“Harry,” Draco said. But Harry couldn’t. He needed to get out of there now. “Harry wait,” Draco said as Harry made his way to the door.
“I forgot I have… plans. I need to go,” Harry’s aid hurriedly and he walked out, leaving Draco behind. He didn’t see Draco’s confused expression, or the patronus message he sent to Hermione.
As he was traveling down the elevator, it stopped on the Magical Creature Department floor. Hermione saw him and immediately pulled him out.
“Hermione! What are you doing?” Harry asked incredulously. He just wanted to go home and drink himself to sleep. Why couldn’t people let him do that?
“Harry, I need your help with something,” Hermione said she was dragging him through the room filled with cubicles and people.
“Can’t it wait until tomorrow 'Mione? I want to go home,” Harry said.
“There’s an office that keeps raining. But it’s not water it’s raining, it’s mud,” Hermione said. She stopped at a closed door. It was an unoccupied office, but Harry didn’t need to know. He also didn’t need to know that Hermione was the one to spell it to rain mud.
Harry sighed and opened the door. Sure enough, the office was filled with mud and it was only getting worse.
“I would think you’d know how to fix this, Hermione,” Harry said. He raised his wand and cast, “Finite incantatem,” not really expecting it to work.
The office immediately stopped raining and Harry raised an eyebrow at Hermione.
“Oh, I didn’t think to use that spell. How silly of me,” Hermione said, a blush covering her face.
Harry stepped around her and said, “Alright Hermione, I need to get home now.”
Hermione waved him off. Again, as Harry had his back to her, he didn’t see a message patronus, this time delivering itself to Ron. He got back into the elevator and made his way all the way to the atrium, where the floo was. As he stepped out, Ron stepped up to him.
“Ron? What are you doing here?” Harry asked quizzically.
“Just wanted to surprise Hermione,” Ron said, holding up a bouquet of flowers in his hand.
“Oh,” Harry replied.
“But while I got you here, I was wondering if I could get your advice on something,” Ron said. Harry remembered being asked the same thing by Draco and he wanted to go home now more than ever.
But he stayed and asked, “What’s up?”
“Er, well Hermione and I had a little argument over… the dishes. Yeah, the dishes. She said that she wants to hand wash them the muggles way, but I said spelling them clean is faster and better. It turned into a big fight. What should I do?” Ron asked.
“Well, the flowers are a good start. I would say to er, hand wash the dishes with her. It’s easy and you can get through dishes fast,” Harry said. Ron nodded.
“I’ll see you,” Harry said. He began to walk away but Ron grabbed his arm.
“Wait!” Ron exclaimed.
“What?” Harry asks, bewildered.
“How do you hand wash dishes? I’ve no idea,” Ron said and Harry sighed.
“I’m sure Hermione will show you. I need to go now Ron,” Harry pleaded. Why did everyone and their mother need to speak with him today?
Ron let him go grudgingly and Harry stepped away. When he made it to the fireplaces, he jumped in and said his address. The familiar tugging sensation overtook him, but before he made it home, he was thrown back into the Ministry. He tried it again twice with the same results. He switched to a different fireplace, but it still didn’t work.
Great, he thought, now the floo isn’t working.
Ten minutes later, he was out of the Ministry and above ground. Once he found a deserted alleyway, he apparated to his apartment. A sigh of relief escaped his mouth as he walked up to steps to his door. He used his wand to unlock the door and bring down his wards.
When he opened the door and turned on the light, yells of “Surprise!” rang through the house. He looked around and saw all of his friends: Hermione, Ron, Luna, Ginny, Blaise, Neville, Seamus, Dean, everyone. At the front was the one and only Draco.
“Happy birthday Harry!” Hermione said.
“You guys didn’t really argue about dishes, did you?” Harry asked. Ron snorted and shook his head. Hermione stepped up to him and gave him a hug. He returned it.
“Thanks you 'Mione,” Harry said.
She shook her head and said, “Oh, don’t thank me. It was all Draco’s idea.” Harry released to look up at the man in question. Draco was biting his lip and looking unsure of himself.
“Thanks,” Harry said and Draco nodded. And the party began.
It was nice for Harry to talk to his friends and drink some beer. He had wanted something stronger, but he supposed he would have to wait. As the night passed on he tried to not follow Draco with his gaze everywhere, but old habits died hard. Draco was seemingly trying to keep to himself. Harry knew it must have been hard for him to contact everyone to invite them. Not everyone has made the best amends with him despite how much he had changed.
Everyone started to file out sometime after midnight. Most of them did have work tomorrow, after all. Harry closed the door behind Seamus and Dean, but didn’t turn around. He knew who was standing behind him. He wasn’t ready to face him even after all of this. Draco put a lot of effort into the party and Harry was grateful. But his heart was also shattered into a million pieces.
“Do you like the party?” Draco asked. Harry nodded and finally turned around.
“It was great. Thank you… Draco,” Harry said and Draco beamed.
Harry feigned a yawn and said, “But it was very tiring. Need rest for work tomorrow, you know.” He hoped Draco would take the hint.
Instead he said something completely unexpected.
“I believe you misunderstand my and Astoria’s relationship,” he said.
Harry’s eyebrows raised, “Oh?”
“We’re friends. Just friends. She helped me with something, that’s all. There’s nothing more between us,” Draco explained. Harry tired to squash the hope growing in his chest. He knew it couldn’t amount to anything.
“Why are you telling me this? Your love life has nothing to do with me,” Harry said.
Draco looked down at his feet and said, “Maybe it does.”
“What?” Harry asked.
“I didn’t give you your birthday present yet,” Draco said. He pulled a black box from his coat and stepped up to Harry. Hesitant hands took the box and opened it. Inside it was a beautiful watch. Lifting it, Harry looked at the back, where there was an engraving.
It said, “Just in case you lose yourself in time xxx”
“It’s marvelous,” Harry said.
“Yeah it is,” Draco said. Harry looked up to see Draco watching him. He was so close. His eyes flicked down to Draco’s lips and back to his eyes. Harry thought he could lose himself in those eyes forever. Draco leaned in until there was only a centimeter of space between them. He looked down at Harry’s lips and Harry lost it. He leaned in the rest of the way and their lips met. It was everything he ever hoped it would be. Draco’s lips were soft against his own. When their tongues met, Harry almost collapsed with pleasure.
After a few moments of this, Draco broke the kiss to murmur, “Happy birthday, Harry.” Then their lips joined again.
- Y/N’s a runner and gets attacked by a griever while in the Maze. -
Word Count : 3492
You swiped the sweat off of your forehead with the back of your hand as you stood up. Stretching your arms up towards the sky, you hummed in satisfaction as your back popped and cracked from having been crouched over for so long. You set your basket of crops downs and used the fabric of your pants to brush off the dirt on your hands before gathering your hair up into a ponytail. You winced every time your fingers got snagged in a knot. After a few minutes of combing your fingers through, you managed to secure an elastic band around it and with one last tug you picked up the heavy basket again.
It was a hot day in the Glade and the urge to just sit in the shade and lay about was strong but Alby’s words echoed in your head as if they were engraved into your brain.
Everyone had to do their job and that included you as well. You had to do your part and pull your own weight in the Glade. There wasn’t any time or patience for lazy people.