The funerals were a few days later; only the Cullens, Harrison and Professor McGonagall attended them. Dumbledore's body was released to the British Ministry. Harrison really didn't care what would happen to his ex-headmaster.
Professor McGonagall told him he was cleared from all charges that were made against him in Britain. He had been relieved to hear that for he was now able to use his magic openly without worrying that someone could track him.
He had realised that the British Aurors had been able to track him with his magic when he released it into the earth. It had been a hard task for them but eventually they were able to track the trace.
It was another week after the funerals that Harrison asked Edward out on a date again. Both of them were on their way to the magical community for that's where Harrison decided to go for their second date.
"Why are we at a restaurant when you didn't want to on our first date?" Edward asked as they were being seated.
"That's because this is a magical restaurant," Harrison told him. "I need one specials menu, please," he told the waiter after they were seated.
"Specials menu?" The vampire inquired after the waiter walked away.
"The America magical community is a little more tolerant to those who are different, like vampires," Harrison clarified. "In this restaurant you can be yourself. No one would judge you. No one will kill you because you are different or will even care that you are. Vampires are welcome here.'
"The specials menu is made for magical creatures, like vampires or werewolves. Anything you order will taste like blood."
"So, I can actually eat something," Edward smiled. "Without killing?"
Harrison laughed. "Yes, you can. I thought it would be nice."
"It's better than nice, it's perfect," the vampire took hold of the wizard's hand and kissed it. The waiter came back and both ordered. Edward was a little sceptic but he figured he could try it at least.
"Why do I not hear anyone's thoughts?" The vampire inquired; since setting foot in this place, it had been rather quiet in his head. He had been so used to hearing everyone's thoughts that the possibility of not hearing them had never occurred to him. If he had to be honest with himself he found it a little eerie; this way he wasn't able to know if there were any treats to them.
"The restaurant is magically protected and doesn't allow the use of magic in here. You're ability is a magical one and therefore it won't work," Harrison explained. "It's protected by earth magic, the most powerful and ancient magic there is."
"Amazing," Edward observed. "It's weird not hearing anyone's thoughts." He was so used to hearing everyone that it was too quiet not hearing anything but his own.
"You're not enjoying the quiet?"
"I don't know," the vampire admitted.
All Harrison could do was smile, while the waiter brought over their dinner. The vampire looked at his food with a critical eye. The wizard had told him that it would taste like blood but could it really?
Deciding it couldn't hurt to try, he carefully lifted a bit of the steak and took a bite; moaning in delight. He opened his eyes, not realising he had closed them, and looked up at a smirking Harrison, watching him.
"That good, huh?" he asked.
Had Edward been human, he would have blushed. "It's been a while since I had mountain lion," he replied, a little defensive; it only made the wizard's smirk brighter. The vampire took another bite of his blood-steak. "It doesn't bother you that I eat blood?"
Harrison shrugged. "Not really," he answered. "Probably as much as what I'm eating bothers you." The wizard took another bite of his chicken. "But I have to say that this makes it easier than to see you actually drink blood straight from the source…" One thing Harrison loved about the wizarding world; they could make everything seem normal. The blood-steak Edward was eating looked like a normal steak; the only difference is that once the vampire eats it, it dissolves and becomes liquid.
"I'd suppose it does," Edward observed. A comfortable silence fell over the couple as they ate their dinner. The vampire took some sneak peeks at the dance area before making his decision. He stood up and held out his hand to the wizard. "Harrison, would you do me the honour of dancing with me?"
Harrison, flabbergast, nodded. "I have to warn you though; I'm not a good dancer." Images from the Yule Ball shot through his head and for the moment he was glad Edward wasn't able to read his thoughts for he didn't want him to see how much of a fool he had made himself while dancing with Parvati Patil.
"I'm sure we'll manage," Edward told the wizard and led him to the dance area. He carefully took one hand in his own and guided the other to his shoulder before placing his own hand on the wizard's waist. Slowly they started to move to the music.
Harrison looked down at his feet, not wanting to step on Edward's toes, before he felt the other's fingers under his chin and lifted his head. "Don't worry, you'll do fine," the magical voice took over and all he could do was obey.
Slowly, the couple moved to the music – letting it take hold of them for once no one else but them existed in the entire world. The wizard felt the hand run through his hair as his eyes drifted shut in contentment. He lifted his head, silently asking the vampire and once the question was received, he moaned as he felt his lips being claimed by the creature.
The need for air tore him away from the vampire, a slight flush covering his cheeks as he opened his eyes. The love that was shown at him through topaz coloured eyes took him aback. He never believed he was the type of person who deserved someone's love and not only had he had someone to love him once but twice. Cedric had loved him for who he was and he had loved Cedric. Edward loved him for who he was and who he would become. Although the vampire had never told him aloud he loved him, he could see it in his actions and eyes. He may not be able to put into words what his feelings were for the vampire but he was certain he could love him just as he was loved.
He gave the vampire a shy smile, suddenly uncertain at the intensity he held his stare. "Are you ready to get out of here?" he asked the vampire as he slightly pulled away from him.
After the vampire confirmed he was ready, the wizard paid and together left the restaurant. Harrison entwined their fingers together, not ready yet to let the vampire go. He led the vampire to a stadium and Accio'ed a broom to him which he caught in his free hand.
"Where are we?" Edward asked, as he looked around. He'd seen Harrison summon a broom but wasn't sure what he'd do with it not to mention he realised that this was the first time the wizard had used his magic in front of him.
"This," Harrison said, gesturing around as he let go of the vampire's hand. "This is a Quidditch stadium. Quidditch is a sport in the magical world that I really loved. It was the first thing I was good at and people respected me for my skills. When I'm on a broom I feel free and alive. I got banned from Quidditch in my fifth year. At that time I was pregnant with C.J. so I didn't really mind and then when the British Aurors were after me I thought it better not to fly anymore for the single bit of magic used would be able to track me, which is how they actually tracked me; when I realised my magic into the earth." Harrison sighed and looked back at the vampire. "Flying was one of the things I loved doing… I forgot how much I loved it."
Harrison mounted the broom and flew a circle around the vampire who looked at him amazed for he had never seen a flying broom before. "This was one experience I shared with Cedric. We were both Seekers and we were both really good at it. There are a lot of things that he and I did that I won't be doing anymore but I don't want to give this up." he told the vampire, sounding a little apologetic, and locked his eyes with the vampire. "However, this is one experience I want to share with you if you're willing."
"I'd be honoured," the vampire replied, honestly. Anything Harrison was willing to give him, he'd take.
Harrison smiled. "Just mount it behind me and hold on tight."
Edward climbed on the broom behind Harrison and held on to his waist. "Show me what this broom can do."
Harrison smiled, again and then urged his broom on, circling the field many times on full speed. Harrison loved every second of it and so did the vampire. Edward was used to the speed but he enjoyed the feeling of flying. It was new to him and it was such an amazing feeling.
Harrison slowed the broom down. "I love flying," he told the vampire. "It was the first thing I really did that I was recognised for. ‘Harry Potter; The youngest seeker in the past century.' I liked being recognised for something I did but most of all I like how flying makes me feel. Free, in control, alive."
Harrison sighed. "I have really missed it."
"Why were you banned from flying?" Edward asked.
"I wasn't banned from flying, just from playing Quidditch but the reason I didn't fly back then was because I was pregnant with C.J. and I was afraid it would hurt him…" Harrison replied as he looked over his shoulder at the vampire. "After his birth I just seemed to have more important things to do than fly. My godfather gave me a Firebolt, at the time it was the fastest broom, and I still have it…maybe now I'll be able to use it again."
"Ah, so that's the broom in my bedroom?" Edward told him.
"Yes," Harrison laughed but quickly sobered up as he thought of something. "I never quite asked you if I could move into your room, did I?"
"I never minded that you moved into my room," the vampire whispered as he caressed the wizard's cheek.
"No," Edward kissed the wizard. "I don't mind having you in my room at all."
"Something just occurred to me," Harrison said. "Emmett told me you'd never had a bed until a few months before I came into your life…why's that?"
"As a vampire I do not need to sleep and therefore have no use of a bed," Edward explained.
"Then why did you have one, now?"
"I…" A painful expression fell over the vampire's face. "I bought it in case Bella wanted to stay over, this way she could sleep in a bed instead of a couch."
"I'm sorry," Harrison didn't know what else to say. He knew how hard it was to lose someone you loved and although Bella had cheated on Edward she had been the first person he'd loved.
Harrison swung his leg over the broom so he could partially face the vampire. He took the vampire's head in both hands and then kissed him passionately; his hands roamed to the vampire's hair and pulled him even closer, hoping to let the sad memories go.
Edward's hands started roaming the wizard's body; tongues duelling for dominance, lips clashing against each other and moans were swallowed by the other's mouths.
It wasn't until Edward flipped them around that Harrison realised they were falling off the broom and broke the kiss, a little amazed that the vampire had been able to kiss him through it. The impact with the ground hit Edward hard. "Are you all right?" Harrison asked him concerned.
"I'm fine, you?" The vampire replied. He had made sure that he was the only one who connected to the ground at impact; he didn't want Harrison to be hurt.
"Yes," Harrison replied, breathless whether this was from the kiss or the adrenaline rush of their fall, Edward didn't know.
Vampire and wizard stared into each other's eyes before bursting out laughing. "I guess that taught us the lesson of not kissing when you're up in the air…" Harrison said between laughs.
When their laughter subsided, Harrison rested his head on the vampire's chest and sighed in contentment. "I used to do this with Cedric…" He bit his tongue, he had blurted it out before he realised. How could he be so stupid? Why did he have to bring up Cedric every time he was together with Edward?
The reassuring touch told him that it was fine and he continued. "At night we used to lay together like this in the grass, looking up at the stars. Well…usually Cedric would gaze at the stars and explain to me what they meant while I listened to his heartbeat…The steady pace of his heart never failed to calm me down." He pressed his ear to the vampire's chest and waited a moment before he continued. "I have to get used to not hearing a heartbeat," he smiled up at the vampire, silently telling the vampire that he was willing to give their relationship a chance.
Harrison snuggled closer, enjoying the warmth the other's body was giving him. He knew vampires are supposed to be death cold to the touch, yet, Edward was always warm to him. Not too cold, not too hot, just the right temperature. The rest of the Cullen family was cold to the touch but not too cold. He had long reassembled all the pieces together and knew why the vampire's touch was not cold to him or why there had been some subtle changes between the two.
For Harrison had discovered that he was able to hear Edward's thoughts, always knew where to find him and knew what he was feeling. Yet, these abilities weren't strong, most of the time it was only an echo he could feel but it was enough to confirm his suspicion.
"Edward," Harrison said into the silence as he lifted his head to look up at the vampire. "There's something I have to tell you."
If Edward's heart could beat it would start racing now. He had watched some of those movies that when a person said they had to tell you something, it usually meant something bad. But what could have gone wrong? Wasn't Harrison happy? Weren't they happy? It didn't make sense; on their date Harrison seemed to be happy, his thoughts reflecting his emotion. Why then did he have to talk to him? He tried reading the wizard's mind but felt he was shielding those thoughts from him, confirming his suspicion. Something wasn't right and he was about to find out…
"Will you take a walk with me?" Harrison needed to do something and figured walking would help.
The vampire nodded and was on his feet in seconds when the other sat up, and then helped Harrison stand up.
They walked in silence for a few moments until Harrison broke it, "You know back in Britain when they said I couldn't be entered into their half-bond?"
"Yes, Severus said you were already bonded to someone else," the vampire replied. "You thought you were bonded with Cedric." He had heard the thoughts in the wizard's mind and was grateful at the time that they couldn't enter him into this half-life but now…his jealous side didn't like this. Was that what he wanted to tell him? That he had to break things off for he was bonded with his dead husband?
"Yes," the wizard replied. "I found out that wasn't true."
"What do you mean?" His head shot up, he hadn't realised he had lowered it, and looked straight at the wizard as they stopped walking.
"Cedric and I may have performed an illegal bonding ceremony where we carved our initials in each other's skin and we may even have been bonded but it's not a life bond. A life bond is when you are bonded to your soul mate. The bond Cedric and I had, severed when he died. We loved each other, I still love him, but what we had was meant for a short period and not for life."
The vampire felt he should be upset that Harrison still loved his dead husband but somehow he couldn't find the will to do so.
"You see when a wizard or witch bonds with their mate they cannot be separated. You'd feel your partner's pain, her or his thoughts. When your partner dies you'd die. You're connected on a level that I cannot explain," Harrison continued, although he was certain for the vampire's feelings for him, he was still a little nervous.
"You must have noticed the little changes between us. Like your ability to read my thoughts; when you focus on my thoughts you won't be able to hear anyone else's? That sometimes I'm able to hear your thoughts? That you always know where to find me? That you sometimes can feel what I'm feeling…"
Edward nodded. Yes, he had noticed that. "I have noticed," he confirmed, a little uncertain; he still wasn't sure where this was going.
"Normally a life bond establishes after you and your partner spend the night together after taking vows that would bind the couple in sickness and in health, in pain and in sorrow, in happiness and joy…magic to magic, blood to blood, body to body and soul to soul, till death may take us. You could sort of see them as marriage vows except for both dying at the same time." He added the last as an afterthought. A life bond could never be broken and if one of the bonded died, the other would die as well.
"Are you saying that we are bonded?" Edward needed the confirmation and when Harrison nodded he had it. "But how did it happen? We never…" Spent the night and took vows, he wanted to add but couldn't.
"I think it happened on the night of my birthday," Harrison explained. "Because my magic is so powerful it needed to be confined before it would get out of control. When it found you with me it bonded us together. My magic knew you are my soul mate and since you were already there it created the bond."
"Are you saying that, in a way, we are married?"
"Yes, but the bond isn't too strong yet. It hasn't settled. In order for the bond to be complete we'd have too…" Harrison stopped, blushed and looked away.
Edward pulled Harrison into his embrace. Now that Harrison explained what had happened, he was able to read the wizard's thoughts. The wizard had been afraid he would deny the bond and pull away from him…as if he could do that. "I really don't mind being married to you," he told him before gently kissing his lips.
In the back of his mind, Edward had always known Harrison was his mate but after the fiasco with Bella he hadn't acted on it, wanting to be certain the wizard was indeed his. Knowing he was Harrison's soul mate had confirmed his suspicion and he found he rather liked having a mate.
"Neither do I," Harrison replied and caressed the vampire's cheek. There was still something he needed to tell the vampire. "I know I haven't always been fair to you in this relationship, especially when I keep bringing Cedric up. But I want you to know that I'm willing, Iam giving this a shot. I have feelings for you and once I figure out what they are I will tell you. I know I have no right to ask you this but are you willing to wait for me while I figure things out?" Please, don't leave me…
The thought had been well hidden but Edward was still able to hear it.
"Harrison, I've been waiting over ninety years for you. A few more days, weeks or even months doesn't really matter," he leaned in closer. "Yes, I'll wait for you," he breathed into the other's ear before kissing him deeply once again.
Harrison Diggory stared up at the building in front of him. He was standing in the same spot he stood a year ago when he first went to muggle high school. There were a few things different, for now he was a senior and this would be the last year he'd spend in high school and this year he wasn't alone.
His hand found that of his mate and entwined their fingers together. He turned to his mate and cocked his head. "Tell me again how you failed your exams?" He asked the person next to him.
The vampire looked down at his mate and smiled. "I was a little distracted," he replied. "Had more important things to do than study."Like protecting you and C.J.
The amused look didn't go unnoticed by the vampire.
"I'd figured with all the exams you've taken in your life, you could take it with your eyes closed," Harrison joked. Edward had told him how often they'd graduated from high school. He mentally cringed; he couldn't imagine spending eternity at high school.
"I could," Edward replied. "I figured this way I get to spend more time with you."
"You're a hopeless romantic," Harrison playfully hit him in the chest. "Does this mean you share all my classes?" He asked hopefully, he would kind of like having the vampire close all the time. He may have yet to say the words to the vampire but he'd fallen madly in love with him.
Edward chuckled, "I made sure most of our classes are the same." Unfortunately, he hadn't been able to share all the classes for some had been full.
"So, I don't get to spend all my time with you?" A small pout grew on the wizard's face. "But at least we'll have all the other classes together…and lunch…" Harrison shot a smile at the vampire. "Oh! And our afternoon and our nights and the…"
Edward stopped Harrison and pulled him into his arms before kissing him. "I'd like that," he breathed against his lips, knowing what the end of that sentence was.
"Are you ready to go," the vampire asked after a moment of comfortable silence; well except for the students pulling in.
Harrison nodded. "Yes, let's go," he said and together they walked inside, passing a bully who was treating a smaller boy rather badly. He noticed it was the same as last time and stopped to observe. A stray thought could be heard, it's the only way I can touch you…Harrison raised an eyebrow and looked at Edward, who confirmed the thought was, indeed, from the bully.
"Poor, little, fairy boy is scared…" The bully mocked.
Harrison walked over to the couple and pulled the bully away. "Why don't you just ask him out? That way it'll be more pleasurable for both of you," he said, leaving the bully speechless. He gave an encouraging smile to the smaller boy then walked back to Edward, entwined their fingers and walked to their first class.
At the end of the day, Edward drove Harrison back to the Cullen's home. They entered the living room and noticed the entire family was waiting for them.
"Something wrong?" Edward asked as Harrison walked over to his son. He shared a look with the wizard when no one answered his question.
"Dada," C.J. yelled when he saw his daddy, trying to crawl over to him. His daddy picked him up and he smiled happily.
"Hello, little man, how was your day?" Harrison asked his son.
"Papa," C.J. said as he reached out to Edward. He wanted a hug from his Papa as well; he'd missed both of them so much…
A silence had fallen over the room; all the vampires forgot to act human, except for Emmett who was smirking at his youngest vampire brother. The smirk told Edward that he was the one who'd put that inside C.J.'s head.
Harrison looked from C.J. to Edward and back again. "Papa, huh?" he asked. He looked back at Edward and cocked his head as if he was considering it.
Edward was feeling slightly nervous, especially when he couldn't read the wizard's thoughts, knowing he was deliberately shielding them from him. He wanted to tell his mate that he had nothing to do with it; that, although he felt very protective of C.J., he would never ask him to call him ‘Papa' or ‘Father' or anything else other than ‘Eddy', as C.J. had seem to take a likening to the past couple of weeks.
"Harrison, I've never…" Edward wanted to explain, to tell him that he wasn't the one to put these ideas in his son's head.
"I know," Harrison cut him off. "But C.J. is right; you've been his ‘papa' since about my birthday. It is only fair that he gets to call you that."
"I'd be honoured to have him call me that, but I'd never…" He, again, wanted to explain but Harrison had, once more, cut him off and placed his fingers against his lips to silence him.
"I know," the wizard said. "Cedric may be his biological father and when he's old enough to understand that I want him to know but I don't want him to exclude you from his family. He already thinks you are family…as do I." Harrison handed C.J. over to the vampire. "C.J. loves you and wants you as his papa." He cocked his head and added cheekily, "You should just accept that."
Edward chuckled and watched the happy child in his arms. He felt honoured that this beautiful angel wanted him to be his other parent. "I'd be honoured to accept," he told the wizard and pulled him in for a quick kiss.
Harrison smiled down at his son, who was cooing happily in his mate's arms. Then he looked up and watched his mate's face. Often he couldn't find a trace of emotion on the vampire's face but now he could read him like a book; contentment, happiness but most of all love shown from his eyes. The topaz eyes lifted and met his own green ones and the love didn't fade. "I love you," the wizard told him and realised the slight shock in the vampire's eyes, for this was the first time he'd said it out loud or even admitted it to himself, let alone to the vampire.
"And I love you," was the answer before he was pulled into a breath taking kiss.
C.J. smiled happily at his two parents. It had taken him a while but his daddy was finally happy and he was going to make sure his daddy stayed that way; for all he wanted in his life was to make his daddy and his papa happy. Although he had to wonder what took them so long; after all he had seen it from the very beginning.
August 8th, 2009