If You Would Be My Master, for unbroken_halo Title: If You Would Be My Master Author:rushlight Giftee:unbroken_halo Word Count: 4312 Rating: NC-17 Pairing: Harry/Snape Warnings: D/s Disclaimer: This is a piece of non-profit fan fiction, and no copyright infringement is intended. Summary: Sometimes it's difficult being The Boy Who Lived, and Harry has to find unorthodox ways to cope. Author's Note: This was originally written for angelsotherlove's prompt: "I have this strong desire to see Harry in lingerie, and light bondage. So long as it contains those two things I will be a happy woman." But since she unfortunately had to drop out of the fest, the story has been reassigned to one of the pinch hitters who've been working so hard to make this community a success. Happy Holidays!
If you would be my lover I will shield you from tears But if you would be my master I will do anything.
Harry winced at the restriction of the collar he wore, feeling the cool leather press flat and unyielding against his throat. He lifted his chin, breathing in through his nose, but the tautness of the chain that held the collar bound to the cuffs at his wrists didn't ease. His hair felt coarse and scratchy where it was pressed between his cheek and the mattress.
Not for the first time, he wondered why he was here. Without his glasses on, the contours of the room around him were blurred, distorted, but still, he knew this room's dimensions better than he did his own. How many nights had he spent lying here, just like this? Waiting. Wanting...
The small metal links of the chain that bound him dug in hard against the skin between his shoulder blades, painful without being particularly cruel. It set up a steady fluctuation of pressure between the collar at his throat and the leather cuffs that bound his wrists at the small of his back, making it impossible to find a comfortable position to lie in. It was only after endless nights of practice in holding just this position that he knew how to arrange himself without wrenching his arms, while still allowing himself the freedom to breathe.
Severus's preferences had always leaned toward more subtle torture.
* * * *
It began with a kiss.
Harry was never entirely sure just when he'd started to feel comfortable in Snape's presence. It must have happened gradually, over time, but the realization hit him out of the blue one quiet Sunday evening toward the middle of his seventh year.
It had taken him a great deal of wheedling and, well, begging -- coupled with the outstanding mark he'd unexpectedly gotten on his potions OWL -- to get Snape to accept him into his NEWT-level potions class. It hadn't been a subject Harry particularly wanted to pursue, but he'd still been considering applying for auror training at the time, and potions was an unfortunate prerequisite if he wanted to go into that field.
Harry had no illusions about his innate skill at making potions, and knew he had to work doubly hard for every mark he got -- which meant asking for help outside of class when he needed it. Snape had proven to be unexpectedly generous in that regard; when faced with a student he believed truly respected the art of potion-making, he was more than willing to offer his time outside of class to keep such students from falling behind.
On that particular evening, they were sitting together in Snape's office going over the week's potions assignment. It was a routine that had become familiar to both of them, as Harry required a great deal of assistance to understand the arcane art of potions-making, and Snape took his NEWT-level classes very seriously. Ever since the war with Voldemort had escalated the previous year and the two of them had been required to join forces, the formality between them had unobtrusively lessened. The small intimacy of their weekly meetings failed to jar either of them.
How many evenings had they spent just like this? The two of them sitting in front of the fireplace in Snape's office, heads bent over their work, barely speaking beyond the occasional question from Harry, punctuated by the curt answers Snape would give him. It was... familiar.
Snape's office was dark that night, and strangely comforting because of it. A low fire crackled in the fireplace beside Snape's chair, casting the potions master's face in an eerie half-light that drew Harry's gaze against his conscious will. He found himself staring, drinking in the lines of the black hair hanging limply to either side of the bowed head, sallow skin given a blush of color by the heat from the fire. Snape's eyes glittered darkly as they moved over the scroll in front of him, lips pressed together tautly in visible displeasure with what he read. His thick brows were drawn together in the scowl that seemed to perpetually lurk between his eyes. A plush goose-feather quill stood poised between two incredibly long and slender fingers, red ink glistening at its tip.
Several moments passed before Snape's eyes flicked up to look at him, the scowl between his eyes deepening. Harry swallowed thickly under the intensity of the glare, fingers tightening over the arms of his chair.
"The elixir you're attempting to study is beyond your ability to decipher, I assume," Snape said, the sarcasm in his voice so thick it was like an echo to the actual words.
Harry dropped his gaze to the book in his lap and blinked rapidly, barely recognizing the pages in front of him. He felt... odd tonight. He felt comfortable with Snape. Why? The answer suddenly seemed extremely important. "Yes. No," he said, shaking his head. Was he always doomed to feel like an imbecile around this man?
Snape sneered. "Obviously."
And that... wasn't what Harry had meant to say at all. An ember popped in the fire, drawing his gaze, and he took advantage of the excuse to break away from the intensity of the eyes that watched him. He could still feel them, however. He shivered, wishing for a moment that he'd never come here tonight.
He looked at Snape again to find that the older man had returned his attention to his scrolls, quill tip scratching across the parchment in front of him. Familiar. Safe.
Quite out of the blue, it occurred to Harry that he wanted. The need he felt grew, bordering on obsession, until he found himself staring at Snape once again and wondering, Why not?
It surprised the hell out of him when he slid his book aside and leaned in to touch his lips to Snape's. Snape's mouth wasn't at all what he'd been expecting. Dry, yes, but soft... so beautifully soft. And willing, after a moment's initial hesitation, which surprised Harry most of all.
After the kiss ended, Snape lifted a finger to touch his lips as if he were holding in the heat of Harry's breath there. The look in his eyes was contemplative.
* * * *
Naked, bound and waiting on the altar of his master's bed. Harry closed his eyes and breathed out, then in again, tasting the heady fragrance Severus had left on the sheets that morning.
This was a familiar ritual between them now. For a moment Harry pictured Snape teaching his fifth-year class, droning on about wolfsbane and shrivelfig and terrifying his students, and all the while thinking about the lover chained up waiting in his bed. The thought made Harry shiver. Was Snape hard underneath his robes, thinking about him? Imagining what they'd do when class was over, and Snape had the freedom to return home?
Hard to believe it was afternoon now. It was always evening in the dungeons, no matter what time of day it was, and time ceased to have any meaning for Harry aside from the tense measuring of one breath to the next whenever he was down here. Time was split into two distinct entities for him -- the time Severus was with him, and the time Severus wasn't.
Harry strongly disliked the times when he wasn't.
Disliked them, but endured them, because that was what Severus wanted him to do. Cautiously, he flexed his fingers, the warm leather pressing hard against the base of his hands. It was hard to let himself be bound like this, to be humbled like this -- the physical ache he felt was nothing compared to the bruising of his pride -- yet in some odd way it was freeing. He couldn't explain it, even after all this time.
The memory of Snape's hand putting the collar on him that morning made him shiver. The smell of the leather filling the air, warming him. Light brush of fingers against his skin....
Perhaps it wasn't the bindings he craved at all, but the fact that it was Severus who bound him.
* * * *
Their first time together, Severus had bound his wrists, eyes wide and dark and strangely naked-looking as he leaned in to kiss him. Harry could still feel the imprint of those fingers around his wrists whenever he closed his eyes. There were nights he dreamed about it, still.
He smiled, remembering.
That first time had been more about experimentation than anything else. It wasn't something he needed yet. Harry closed his eyes, remembering the feel of the wool-lined leather closing around his wrists, the touch of long, graceful fingers on his hands sending shivers down his spine. He'd been lying on his stomach then, hands bound to the headboard of Snape's bed. Snape's presence was a lurking weight behind him, skin pressing hard against the backs of his thighs.
"Quiet," Snape murmured, trailing a hand down his side. He sounded like he was concentrating, giving Harry every bit of the attention he used when he was working on a new and potentially volatile potion. It was humbling to be the focus of that kind of intense regard. Humbling, and exhilarating.
Harry bit his lip and nodded, his hair falling into his eyes. This was all new to him, this kind of submission, but there was something intensely appealing about it that he couldn't explain. He tensed when Snape's fingers lifted his hair away from his brow and gently pressed the lids of his eyes closed.
Snape's hand stilled. He waited without a word while the tension bled out of Harry's body, and finally Harry dropped his chin a fraction in acceptance and breathed out, "Yes."
He shivered when Snape lifted his hand away from his face. Obeying the unspoken order, Harry kept his eyes closed, even though doing so made him feel ten times more vulnerable. This was a new lesson for him to learn, this kind of obedience. He wasn't sure why it was so exciting, but it was.
The self-enforced blindness of his closed eyes made every sensation doubled, every sound amplified. The hushing whisper of skin against the sheets, the deepening rasp of Snape's breath. The unbearably sweet touch of hands, of lips, and finally... finally... of penetration, touching him deep where he wanted -- needed -- to feel it most.
"Yes," Snape whispered, and "Good," and Harry was lost.
* * * *
The sound of a door opening made Harry's shoulders tighten. He consciously forced himself to relax and breathed out slowly through his mouth, lessening the tension on the chain that connected his collar to the cuffs at his wrists.
There was a sound of shuffling in the next room, a low thump as something was dropped onto the floor, and then finally the door to the bedroom opened. Harry looked up without moving his head, seeing Snape's familiar dark form looming high in the doorway.
"Ah," Snape breathed, his eyes traveling over the length of Harry's shackled form. Harry's face heated with awareness of the image he must make. He realized he was half-hard, the arousal from the memories he'd just been pondering still sparking under his skin.
Snape moved into the room and shrugged out of his outer robe, depositing it without a word on the chair by the door. He stopped at the side of the bed and touched his fingers to the collar at Harry's neck.
"What were you thinking about while I was gone?" he asked. His voice was low, soft, a silken rumble that made Harry shiver deep inside.
Harry swallowed with difficulty. "Our first time together," he said, just as softly. His voice was very dry.
"Mmmm." The sound was contemplative. Snape's face betrayed no emotion as he turned away and walked into the adjoining room.
Harry waited, heart pounding, his eyes blurring as he stared out across the room. A tremor worked its way through him as he considered the possibility that Snape had gone again, that this had been only a brief stop between classes, taking a few spare moments to indulge in looking at his slave.
Then Snape appeared in the doorway again. He held something in his hands this time, a shallow, rectangular box. Harry didn't get more than a glimpse of it as Snape moved out of sight at the other side of the bed.
There was a low rustling as the box was dropped onto the sheets behind him. Harry concentrated on his breathing, wishing he could turn his head. He was still half-hard, and growing harder by the moment. Anticipation sang underneath his skin.
He wanted very badly to be touched.
A hand pressed against his shoulder from behind, bare skin against bare skin. Harry closed his eyes with an open-mouthed sigh, arching back into the caress.
Severus's soft laughter was mocking. "So hungry," he murmured, so close his breath rustled the hair behind Harry's ear. His thumb traced a tremulous path over the curve of Harry's upper arm. "So needful."
Harry squeezed his eyes shut, recognizing the truth of that observation, but he could not lie. "Yes," he whispered.
There was the faintest catch in Severus's breath at this admission. The fingers on Harry's shoulder tightened briefly before pulling away.
Harry winced when the slim chain disappeared from the back of his shoulder blades, carried away by a murmured Vanishing charm. He dipped his head forward reflexively, stretching out the taut muscles of his neck and shoulders, but the freedom from that particular constraint was no comfort to him.
With Severus, freedom always came at a price.
The collar was still wrapped snug around his neck, his wrists still shackled in leather cuffs behind his back. But now he could turn his head, could arrange his body with something resembling comfort on top of the sweat-dampened sheets. Guardedly, he turned to meet Severus's gaze.
Severus stood motionless at the side of the bed, his eyes fixed on Harry with a kind of burning fascination. Harry swallowed hard, his mouth suddenly dry.
"I brought you a gift." Severus's mouth curled when he said it.
Harry's gaze fell to the box lying on the bed behind him. "What is it?"
"Open it and see." Severus gave his wand an indolent swipe through the air, and the link binding Harry's cuffs together vanished.
Harry let his arms fall forward with a sigh, stretching the tension out of them. He was used to being bound by now, but it never diminished the relief he felt when Severus saw fit to release him.
Severus shifted impatiently, and Harry returned his attention to the matter at hand. The box. He eyed it warily as he pulled it toward him and carefully lifted off the lid.
Inside, on a bed of artfully folded tissue paper, lay a black silk garter belt and matching stockings.
Harry's face felt like it was on fire. He could still feel Severus's eyes on him, alert and hungry, drinking in his reactions as he contemplated what was being asked of him. The choice was Harry's as it always was. Say no and leave, with no compulsion whatsoever to remain... or stay and obey, and see what happened.
He trailed a finger over the garter belt, his heart pounding. The fabric felt cool under his finger, smooth. He tried to imagine Severus purchasing these items at a lingerie store and his mind balked utterly at the image. He'd transfigured them, more likely. Transfigured them with the specific intention of asking Harry to wear them for him....
Harry's hands trembled as he lifted the undergarments out of the box. Embarrassment roared through him at the thought of wearing these, and yet there was an edge of excitement to it, too. Severus wanted him to wear this, had perhaps dreamed of it, imagining what he would look like once he'd submitted to his lover's will. In these chambers obedience was often distressing and always difficult, but it never came without reward.
Slowly, Harry slid forward to stand at the side of the bed. There was something almost like ritual in the way he slid the silken black stockings on over his legs, catching his breath as the impossibly soft fabric molded against his skin. His face felt like it was on fire when he pulled the black garter belt over his hips. To dress himself in these garments... to submit himself so completely to Severus's will.... He thought in the back of his mind that he should feel more embarrassed than he did, but those feelings inexplicably faded as the seconds ticked past. Against all logic, this costume made him feel somehow powerful. Desirable.
Or maybe it was the way Severus looked at him when he wore it.
Harry's fingers trembled as he hooked garter to stocking. Severus's fingers trailed over the back of his hand as he did so, making him shiver.
"Severus," he whispered, looking up to meet the other man's gaze.
Severus kissed him. Harry gasped sharply at the suddenness of it, tensing as Severus lifted a hand to cup the side of his jaw and stepped forward to press against him. Severus's robe felt coarse against Harry's bare skin, making him shiver, but he opened to the kiss with all the hunger he felt, desire uncoiling in a rush of heat deep inside his belly.
Strong hands directed him to lie back down on the bed, which Harry complied with eagerly. He watched through lidded eyes while Severus shed his clothing and then moved forward to join him.
Slow kisses, then, and touches that aroused with slow cruelty, making his body writhe against the sheets. It was humbling, the realization that he was being used for another's pleasure. There was humiliation in it, but even that was just another layer of sensation to add to the fire that burned within him, making his back arch when Snape's hand curled around his cuffed wrist, thumb pressing gently against his palm. Snape's breath puffed against his ear, not overly fast but still eager, wanting. Wanting him.
When he spoke, Snape's voice was a hoarse whisper, heavy with satisfaction. "You look...." The silence was filled with possibilities. "Exquisite."
Harry shivered, pride and shame warring for dominion within him. He felt open, flayed raw, his every emotion on blatant display for the man stretched out so tantalizingly above him.
It was likely that no one else could understand why Harry wanted this... needed it. To be held this way, to be bound, to be molded, controlled. He'd spent the majority of his life fighting against the destiny that had been laid out for him, trying to be strong, trying to take something resembling control of his life and the world he lived in. It was wearying to the point where he'd nearly lost himself in the pressures of the role he was being forced to assume. The Boy Who Lived, the wizarding world's champion, their last hope for survival... some days it seemed there was no room left for Harry Potter in the midst of it all.
But here within the shelter of these four walls, in the sanctity of this bed, he could be wholly himself, without reservation. He could give up the pretense that he was a superhuman hero responsible for the salvation of the wizarding world. It was a relief to put all of those other roles aside, however briefly. To hand himself over into Severus's control and simply be.
Warm hands slid down his sides, pulling him close. Harry lifted his hands to Severus's face and returned the kiss with equal hunger, curling his leg around the older man's thigh and pressing their groins together.
Severus's hand slid up Harry's body, tracing over the side of one knee until it reached the garter holding the stocking secure over his leg. Harry shivered when Severus's nail pressed briefly into his skin there and then moved on, lifting his thigh up higher as it went.
Harry's breath fell out of him in a huff when Severus's fingers brushed across the back of his balls and slid further downward. He bit hard into his lower lip when he felt a finger push inside his body without warning, its passage eased by a cool, slick substance.
"Ah," he breathed, tightening his hands on Severus's shoulders. He could feel Severus's eyes on him, devouring every flicker of emotion that crossed his face. This was always the hardest part for him -- remaining open, letting himself be watched as he slowly crumbled and fell apart under his lover's skilled manipulation. Severus's hand remained busy between his thighs as Severus leaned further over him, his breath wafting out warm and sweet-smelling across Harry's face. Harry's leg was crooked up over Severus's arm in a position that would have been uncomfortable if he hadn't had so many years of practice flying on the Quidditch team.
Two fingers now, and Harry turned his face away, unable to stop himself. He made a soft sound in the back of his throat when Severus nipped at his shoulder in silent chastisement.
"You love this." The sarcasm in Severus's voice was undeniable, but there was honest wonder behind it. As if he couldn't believe Harry actually wanted to be here with him, even after all this time.
"Want you," Harry whispered, closing his eyes.
Despite the rigid and sometimes unpredictable framework of dominance and submission that characterized their time together within these chambers, the only rule Severus insisted he adhere to during these times was that he be himself, that he be honest about who he was and what he wanted. After all these months together, it was getting to the point where he actually felt able to do so.
"Harry." Severus pressed the side of his face against Harry's scar, breathing out tremulously over his hair.
If he was being truthful with himself, it was greed that kept Harry returning to Severus's bed. Greed for the voice that said his name with such aching need, that called him exquisite and gifted him with such gratifying honesty of its own. Greed for the hands that touched him with such tenderness, as if he were truly someone to be cherished.
The fingers disappeared, leaving Harry with a feeling of aching emptiness that seemed only partly physical. The discomfort he felt was short-lived, however; Severus pulled back briefly to slide into a better position and then leaned down over him again, pressing both of Harry's cuffed wrists into the pillow above his head.
Harry arched into the body that hovered over him, barely able to catch his breath from excitement and anticipation. His body was aching after being bound in this bed alone for so long, wanting, needing. Severus could be a cruel master, but he always made it worthwhile in the end.
He sighed when Severus entered him, sliding into his body in one long stroke that made it difficult to breathe for a few moments. His hands shook where Severus held them.
"Harry," Severus said again. He pressed his lips to the side of Harry's jaw and nosed back to mouth at the side of Harry's neck underneath his ear.
Harry couldn't stay quiet when Severus began to move, that long, warm body sliding over his sensitized skin with a steady pace that was just this side of maddening. Outside these chambers they were rivals, fighters, pawns in other men's wars, but here within the sanctuary of these four walls everything was so blessedly simple. There was only Harry and Severus, and what they chose to accept and what they chose to share together, until everything at last pared down to this burning pleasure. He felt safe here, wanted for who he was instead of who his parents were or what had been done to him when he was an infant. In this bed life was sensation, and pride, and want, and need, and -- eventually -- fulfillment.
He cried out when he came, pleasure exploding out of him with an intensity that made the world bleed to white around him. Severus's arms tightened around him, holding him through it, offering comfort and consent and appreciation, all without words. Harry pressed his face against Severus's shoulder and concentrated on breathing, relaxing into the warm lassitude that spread through his limbs as his body came down from the height of its orgasm.
So much nicer now without his own need getting in the way, feeling the tension strung taut through Severus's body above him. Harry stroked a hand over Severus's back, pressing lightly with his nails, and tightened his stocking-covered thighs around the other man's hips. Severus made an inarticulate sound of pure hunger in Harry's ear, pure longing, and then his body convulsed, pressing down with delightful breathlessness over Harry's as he came.
They lay silently together after that while their breathing slowed and their heartbeats calmed. Severus never said much during these encounters. He wasn't by nature a garrulous man, and Harry had come to terms by now with the fact that he might never hear verbal confirmation that this was more than just sex between them. The hands that traced such soothing patterns over his skin, however, the breath that stuttered so softly over his hair... those told quite an articulate story of Severus's feelings for him, and Harry was content with the reassurance they gave him.
After a few minutes Harry moved to get up from the bed, but Severus's hand settled onto his hip to stop him, thumb tracing slow patterns over the skin just above the garter belt. "Stay," Severus whispered, brushing his lips over Harry's shoulder.
Harry's breath caught at the quiet request. Maybe it wasn't just him who felt whole and real only when they were together within these walls.
"Yes," he whispered back, and let his answering kiss echo the sentiment.