It has been a while since the last update for this, but I thought I should finally finish it. This story was only meant to be a one-shot, but look how well that turned out. Don’t expect any more chapters from this, I doubt I’d be able to do anything more with it, though if anyone wants to continue on with the plot in a new story, feel free. Hope you all enjoy the conclusion to this story.
It was nearing September and Andrew had barely spent three hours at a time with Harry.
They'd only met a month before and events had conspired to keep the two apart.
The first time Andrew had knocked on Harry's door to ask him out for a walk — in daylight — or something, a huge man had answered and growled furiously when he asked for Harry. He claimed no boy by that name lived there then slammed the door in Andrew's face. Quite surprised by this, Andrew stood on the stoop for a few minutes. He was sure this was Harry's house, though it was possible he'd gotten it wrong. It had been quite dark when he'd been there last.
He was walking slowly down the garden path to the pavement when he'd heard a 'psst!' Curiously, he turned back around to see Harry ducking around the side of the house. He was filthy, dressed in old baggy clothes that were ripped and covered in dirt and grass. He held a set of pruning shears in one hand and there were tiny leaves stuck to his gloves.
Even all sweaty and dirty, Andrew thought he looked adorable. He had enough presence of mind not to say this aloud though.
"Bad timing?" he asked instead.
Harry blushed — which Andrew still thought was the cutest sight ever — and nodded. "Yeah. Sorry about Uncle Vernon, he's always like that. Plus, he doesn't like me, or my friends."
"Sorry to hear that." They stared at each other for a moment, before Andrew cleared his throat and said, "So, uh, you're gardening?"
"Yeah … uh, well, I'm doing chores."
"Oh, that'll probably take a while, won't it?" Andrew looked crestfallen.
"Probably." Harry looked just as upset.
"I wanted to see if you'd take a walk with me, maybe show me the neighbourhood a little better, but maybe we can do that another time."
"That'd be great, but I'm not sure if my aunt and uncle would let me."
"Oh. Well, why don't I help you out, then?" Andrew grinned as if this were the most brilliant idea he'd ever had.
"Really? You want to help?" Harry looked incredulous. "It's not very fun."
"Probably not, but we could talk, or something and the work would go a lot faster and we could maybe turn it into a competition or something. I mean, if you want to, of course."
Harry grinned and Andrew knew he was staring, but couldn't help it. "I'd love that, thanks," Harry replied and Andrew silently cheered.
And so their first 'date' was spent weeding Harry's back garden. It was one of the best dates either of them had ever had.
Sometimes Andrew would be lucky enough to ring the Dursley's doorbell and have Harry answer it. His Aunt had scowled at him when she had first met him, but Harry had been inside and caught sight of him from the hallway, dashing outside before Petunia could say anything against it. Andrew had even met Harry's cousin Dudley. He wasn't sure it was possible for a human to hold that sort of shape. He'd had a long look in Giles' library after that memorable meeting. He was still keeping an eye out for descriptions of demons that matched Harry's cousin.
They'd never walked for long, just around the area, down to the local shop and the main roads and such. Little Whining wasn't a very exciting place to live, but then, sometimes non-exciting was a good thing. Apart from their first two meetings, nothing unusual had happened to Andrew and Harry and both were grateful for it.
Still, it was the last weekend of August and Harry had told Andrew he was free for the entire Saturday. Andrew wanted to do something special. Harry was going away to boarding school in a few days and this was likely the last chance he'd get to see him for months. For the life of him though, he couldn't think of anything to do.
"Why don't you just take him for dinner and a movie then?" Dawn had finally said, exasperated by his frantic pacing and thinking aloud the night before 'The Big Date'.
Dinner and a movie. Kinda typical, but a classic. And they'd never done anything like that yet. It was always little meetings, pre-date things. Hell, they hadn't even kissed yet.
They hadn't kissed. Hadn't really dated … What if Harry thought they were just friends? What if Andrew was being too subtle in his intentions? What if——?
"For god's sake Andrew!" Dawn had interrupted his ramblings again. "It's not big deal. If he doesn't like you, then he doesn't - it's not the end of the world. You'll both be embarrassed and have a chuckle about it, but he doesn't seem like the kind of guy who'd be cruel about a misread situation. Take a risk and go check the paper for movie times."
Too scared to risk Dawn's wrath again, Andrew did exactly that.
They'd taken the bus into London, sitting next to each other in awkward silence. They'd greeted each other, made comments on the weather and their health then said nothing until the bus reached its destination - and then it was only to comment on which way they should go to find the cinemas and a place for lunch.
Andrew didn't remember much of the movie. Harry had chosen, though neither of them had cared much about what was playing. Maybe the movie had been a bad idea. But it had kept them occupied for two hours. Harry seemed to enjoy it well enough. Andrew should have known: he spent more time watching his companion than the screen. Harry had noticed a few times and they'd both blushed and turned back to the screen. Anyone watching would have been disgusted by the picture they made. It was far too cute and sentimental.
They walked around afterwards, looking for interesting places to eat.
The movie had a positive outcome though: it had broken the ice enough that they were chatting amicably about anything that popped into their heads. Andrew was quite amused by some of the stories Harry told about boarding school life. He would have liked to have met Ron and Hermione — Harry's face brightened at the mere thought of his two best friends. In turn, Andrew talked about his house-mates: Buffy and Xander and their disgustingly happy relationship; his and Dawn’s strange friendship; and Giles and his books and fatherly ways. A strange family, they were, but no stranger than the rest of his life had been. He only mentioned his life before England briefly, talking about general things, like living in America. He was certain Harry didn't tell him everything about his life either.
"What about that place?" Andrew asked as they came to a natural lull in the conversation.
"What place?" Harry looked around. They'd been walking for at least an hour and the two boys were getting more than a little hungry.
"That place, the pub. It looks kinda cool."
"Uh …" Andrew looked at Harry, who was a little pale. "Pub?"
"You can still get in to eat, can't you?"
"But … pub?"
"Yeah." Andrew glanced at his companion before pointing down the road. "The Leaky Cauldron. It's got a cool name. Might as well have a look and see what it's like. I bet Willow would get a kick out of the name — she's Buffy and Xander's friend who I mentioned, the one living in Brazil with her girlfriend. I bet Dawn would love it too."
"Uh, Andrew, I'm not sure we should. I don't want to get in trouble, just in case."
Andrew frowned. "Oh, okay. That would be kinda bad. Let's keep looking then."
Harry seemed to relax once they'd left the pub far behind. Andrew put it behind him for now, jumping enthusiastically into another conversation. But he was sure to file it away to think about later.
They didn't get back until near dusk.
Andrew walked Harry home. They were silent, but it was a comfortable quiet, not the awkwardness of the morning bus ride. It was cold, so they walked a little closer together than was usual. At least, that's what they told themselves.
The Dursleys weren't home, having taken advantage of Harry's absence to have a family day out without him around to mess things up, or destroy the house while they were gone.
Harry invited Andrew in, but they both knew he couldn't stay long. He was expected back at his house soon and Harry's relatives could come back at any time.
"Thank you for the outing," Harry said as they both entered the house.
"I had fun," Andrew said.
"Me too," Harry agreed, with an endearing smile. "It was the most fun I've had all holidays. I really like having you around Andrew." He started to mumble as he said that and blushed.
"Me too," Andrew parroted back breathlessly. He was more nervous now than he’d been all day.
As though sensing his companion's unease, Harry looked at him and took a step closer. "Andrew …" he trailed off, looking down.
Andrew steeled himself and took a step closer as well, so they were barely separated. Harry looked up again inquisitively, but before he could ask anything Andrew bent to place a kiss on Harry's lips.
They froze in that position, neither moving enough to break the spell of that chaste contact. But, a moment later, they both drew back, eyes wide and cheeks flushed with emotion.
Andrew had nothing to say for once. It had been a perfect kiss, better than he'd imagined all these weeks of knowing and wanting the other boy. Harry licked his lips and looked down, blushing furiously, but he was smiling as he looked back up and Andrew smiled back in relief, seeing the expression.
"Do … do you like owls?" Harry asked after they'd stared at each other for quite a few minutes.
That wasn't exactly the question Andrew had been expecting. "Uh, I guess so?"
Harry blushed again, realising how strange his question had been. "I mean, my school, they have this strange postage system. They, uh, train owls to take letters to other people."
"Like carrier pigeons?" Andrew was trying to think of where he'd come across the idea of using owls for post. He knew it sounded so familiar.
"Yeah, kinda, only much better trained. They don't even need an address, just a person."
"That is well trained … wait." It clicked where he'd heard about owl post before. "You're a wizard!"
Harry took a step back. "What?"
"It all makes sense now: the broom, flying, that strange cloak, the fact you knew about vampires, owl post." Andrew grinned and Harry relaxed a little at the friendly expression. "That's so cool! Willow's like a witch, but her magic is totally different and Giles is super powerful too, but I don't know if he's a wizard like you are or like Willow — only he'd be a warlock or something, not a witch. Oh, and I wonder if I could learn it too, cause I have some powers, but I mostly just raise demons — but not any more, or only if it's for a good reason, since I'm not really evil any more. And I wonder if Jonathan was a wizard like you … Oh! Does that mean you go to Hogwarts? I've heard so much about that place——”
Harry did the only thing he could do in that situation and shut Andrew up by covering his mouth, with his own. A few noises were swallowed up, but soon stopped as Andrew clicked onto the situation. His hands came up to rest on Harry's waist and he drew the other boy closer, moving his lips and kissing back.
Really, it was the perfect end to one of the best summers either of them had ever experienced.