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The back of Ron's neck tastes clean, like soap and fresh sweat. Harry wraps his arm around Ron's chest and remembers mud and blood and ashes.
Ron's shoulders are broad, now, and the hair on his chest tickles Harry's arm. Harry remembers, fifth year, looking at Ron in the changing room and wondering if he'd ever live to have a man's body.
If he himself would.
Magic can take you to the brink of death without marking you. Scars come from when you fall down after. So in spite of everything that happened, their two bodies are mostly smooth, with a few glaring exceptions. The lightning bolt on Harry's forehead where a son died and an orphan was born. The gouge on the back of Ron's shoulder where he staggered and slid down from the muddy ruin of the old library with an unconscious Harry in his arms.
Harry would like to kiss that ugly furrow now, lick it, say with kisses what he's never said with words. When you weren't sure whether I was dead or alive, when your own life hinged on how quickly you escaped, you didn't leave me behind. You came back for me. You always come back for me.
But Ron doesn't like Harry to touch it. And Harry doesn't want Ron thinking about that day when it all ended, when it all began. He wants Ron thinking about now, only now, the slide of Harry's cock in him, the feel of their two heartbeats fast and hard and not together at all. The life that's still in them, that's never left them, that each of them owes to the other so many times over now.
So instead, Harry lays his sweaty face on the back of Ron's sweaty neck and says what he can.
"Yes," he pants. "Ron. Yes. Yes. Always."
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September 23, 2004