Author's Note: This is written for Armchair's First Birthday Furniture Fic Challenge. Dedicated to Benj, who will always be loved.


By Passo


The old swing was rusty.

He couldn't remember a time when it wasn't there. It was just as if it had been there forever—a sore thumb that marred the perfect field of grass and lilies that surrounded his home. The rest of the estate had changed, as had he. But the swing stayed put, withstanding the years of rain, snow, and sun. It never altered, never left.

Draco felt the grass tickle his bare feet as he walked to the swing. The ground was wet, moistened by the early morning rain, but he didn't seem to notice. His eyes were centered on the swing as he approached, his steps tired but certain. The gloomy grey sky mirrored his eyes, and echoed his heart.

He had arrived. He touched the metal bars reverently, his thin, pale fingers feeling more than the dirty, brittle surface. The paint had peeled a long time ago. He closed his eyes, his mind taking him back to a time when he had been happy.


"Draco, what's a porch swing doing in the middle of nowhere?"

"I have no idea. It's been here since I was born. Why, don't you like it?"

"It's very nice. And quite secluded, too."

He grinned. "You're a sweet one." He couldn't resist teasing.

They exchanged smiles.


He sat on the crusty seat, facing the distant manor. The house was as impressive as ever, an imposing symbol of the Malfoys' power on top of the hill. In spite of its magnificence, it stood there empty. Everyone had died, just as they were supposed to. Only he continued to hang on. He wasn't exactly sure why he hung on; he had nothing to stay for. Nothing but memories that whispered on lonely nights.

He moved slightly, applying pressure with his feet. The swing stirred, hesitantly at first, as if he had awakened something which had been sleeping for decades. He kept his hand on the bars, his slender arms guiding the swing as it swayed, slowly, moving with the gentle wind. Like the swaying of time.

He glanced at the horizon. The sun was starting to rise, kissing the countryside with its rosy light. After a while, he was able to see the faint blue veins that stood out from his skin. His arms shuddered with every movement, as if the soft swinging took much effort. Nowadays, it usually would. But, he hadn't felt as strong as he did right now for more years than he cared to remember. This swing always managed to comfort him.

Even so, he knew he shouldn't be staying outdoors like this. Especially now that it had started to drizzle again. The cold drops of water stung his skin like hundreds of tiny needles. But still, he stayed.

He stared at his hands, at his feet, at his skin. They were still beautiful, like delicate paper, even after all these years. He wondered if the rest of him was just as lovely. He didn't care much about mirrors these days. Or about beauty for that matter. He chuckled, remembering when he had been so vain, loving his body, knowing it was adored.


"You're perfect."

"So are you."

"No, not like you. You're really perfect. In every way." As if to prove his point, the boy moved his hands over the other's lithe body, taking his time, feeling the smoothness, and loving every inch. The fingers pressed on the supple skin tenderly, as a lover's would.

Draco couldn't breathe, his senses were calmed yet somehow stimulated. His eyes shut with pleasure and he sighed, his body relaxing, submitting to the demands of those hands. Hands that seduced, hands that suffered, hands that offered so much more than he was willing to accept. He shivered delicately, his shoulders touching the swing's metal bars. They were cold. He never knew ice could be so sensual.


Yes, he had been beautiful.

The grey eyes misted. He longed to feel again, to be touched. He moved his hand over his arms, his thighs. But it wasn't the same. He needed his touch, his unique way of contact, his strange ability to let his soul flow through their bodies.

He missed him.

Because he worshipped him back. Maybe even more.


"I love you."

Their sweat mingled in the night air, the sweet scent of their union enveloping them. The two bodies inside their lovely cage were still, when just moments earlier, they had been writhing with passion.

"Don't say anything you'd regret."

Bottle-green eyes flickered. "I always mean what I say."

He kept silent, not trusting himself to speak. He turned away from him, shutting his eyes, hiding his vulnerability from view.

"Why can't you look at me?"

"You've always been a fool, Harry."

He felt a kiss on his back, light as a feather, more binding than any word.

"Oh, I don't know. I chose you, didn't I?"

The cage swung in response, swaying to their music.


It was his fault from the very beginning. He yielded to his wants, his forbidden passions. He submitted himself to the lure of those soulful green eyes—eyes he used to hate and now loved to a frightening degree. He really should have known better. But he always did everything in excess.

And yes, he had been weak. Too weak to devote himself fully. Too weak to stay.

Upon his coming of age, his family had insisted on tradition. It was the usual story: Boy marries girl, the two families get richer combined, everyone else is happy while the young bride and groom face an uncertain relationship together.

Maybe it would've hurt less if it were something more unusual. He might have been able to forgive himself in time. But no, it happened as it did. And often, blood pulled stronger than one's own needs. He had succumbed to the pressure, not wanting to endure the hatred he knew would arrive once he revealed the truth. He was, more than he thought, a dutiful son.

In his fear of derision, he had resigned himself to his fate, and Harry to his doom.


I will always love you, wherever I go after this. Never forget that.

Someone had forwarded the note before the ceremony while he was dressing up. His lover had broken.

He cried silently at his wedding as his pretty bride looked at him admiringly. Everyone thought it was cute: the groom was so touched by the service that he couldn't control his tears.

But his tears were meant for someone else.

For he would never get the chance to see him again, and say goodbye one last time. Or kiss his lips, feel his skin in an embrace. Suddenly, he was just gone forever.

They threw the last lily on his coffin that morning, before the ground had swallowed him, never to be seen again. While the person who loved him most was somewhere else, marrying another.

He felt a tear burn a path on his cheek as he sat there, surrounded by merry people, hating himself, and damning his person to a life of misery. For he deserved nothing less.


He touched his cheek and felt wetness. He had been true to his word. He had lived a lie. His whole life was a lie.

Most of the time, it was bearable. But when he couldn't take it, he just sat here, feeling the gentle sway of the swing, remembering. Like he did now.

Draco closed his eyes once more. They were nothing to look at now, feeble and cloudy grey with age. He had worn down, just like the swing.

He let the swaying soothe him, letting the cold of the wet metal seep through his skin, deep into his bones. He didn't know how long he sat there, but he didn't want to leave, didn't need to leave. He just yearned to stay and feel the memories.

Moments, minutes, days, maybe years later, he opened his eyes. The rain was gone. The sun was shining brightly on the grass, warming his feet. He released the bars and felt the smooth lacquered surface of the swing. He ran his hand across it, disbelieving. His young, unlined, beautiful hand.

"Stay with me?"

The green eyes were warm, smiling. Draco stared at the seat across him, his heart almost shattering with joy. As he raised his clear grey eyes to meet that loving gaze, he already knew what he was going to say... for he had found eternity.



(June 2003)

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