Chapter 27 - The Truth

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Draco spent a good five minutes putting up security charms of various sorts around the classroom as soon as he and Harry arrived. They had decided that their friends needed to know what they had been working on before someone asked the wrong questions in the wrong places and gave the game away to the wrong people.

Looking around the room, Draco was pretty sure that he had everything covered, but he waited as he felt Harry shifting his barriers to check in a much more direct manner. If he had not been quite so focused on the upcoming meeting he might have let himself enjoy the sensation that always ran through him when his soulmate allowed more of the world in. The feelings that had terrified Harry and worried Draco were now somehow comforting to Draco when they occurred in safe surroundings.

"Perfect as ever," Harry said with a smile when he finished his scan.

"What's perfect?" Pansy asked as she walked through the door.

"Silencing, anti-scanning and anti-eavesdropping charms," Draco said, knowing that his friend would understand the implication.

"Oh, it's that kind of gathering," was Pansy's response. "Finally going to tell us why you two have been sneaking off to the library and the Room of Requirements when you think no one is looking."

There was no way to completely keep a secret in Hogwarts, all anyone could hope for was to keep people misdirected or wondering until you were ready to tell them. Draco has accepted this many years ago. That he and Harry had managed to keep what they had been working on away from public knowledge was what had been important to him, rather than other's knowing that they were actually up to something. It was easy enough to produce a believable cover story for their antics, but if the truth came out there would be danger to the whole Wizarding world.

"What else?" Draco responded with a superior smirk.

[I shouldn't be surprised, should I?] Harry commented silently, and Draco could not help his smirk turning into a loving smile as he looked at his soulmate.

[No, you shouldn't be,] he said honestly, [but you're getting better. Back in sixth year you'd have been flabbergasted that anyone had noticed.]

That made Harry laugh and Draco turned back to Pansy to find her watching both of them.

"Some people would consider that rude," she said in a mild tone.

"And others would consider it very useful for having private conversations," Draco replied in kind. "I am training Harry to find his Slytherin side, and I really don't want the rest of the world to know how far I have yet to go."

That most definitely amused Pansy, and she shook her head and smiled. Draco let himself enjoy the moment. There had been a time when he was sure he would never be able to relax in the presence of his house mates again. No matter their peculiar rules of conduct and the games they played, the Slytherins had been his friends for years, some of them from before school, and he was glad to have at least two of them back.

Ron, Hermione, Neville, Ginny and Seamus chose that moment to appear together and walked through the doorway.

"Ooh, better watch it, the Slytherins are conspiring," was Seamus' first comment, which drew a haughty expression of disdain from Pansy.

What caught Draco's attention was the flicker of a smile that threatened on his friend's face before the other expression fixed itself in place. Now a Gryffindor might have missed it entirely, or put it down to the fact that Seamus had a habit of spreading around his seemingly, perpetually amused mood when he walked into a room, but Draco was definitely not a Gryffindor.

[Does Pansy fancy Seamus?] now Harry sounded shocked.

[You saw it too?] Draco asked, quite surprised, but very pleased that his lessons had begun to working on his soulmate.

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