Happy traditions, rockerchica826!
Apologies for the delayed posting - I am still here, just spreading out the posting a bit more to give time to the last few people still working on fic. A small fic fest + needing to recruit pinch-hitters late in the game doesn't give me much other choice. The next fic will be posted whenever I have it in hand.
Title: Just Add Alcohol Author: ??? Gift for:rockerchica826 Pairing(s): Draco/Blaise/Theodore Summary: For years, the Slytherins at Hogwarts have celebrated New Years' with copious amounts of alcohol. And every year, Draco always ends up losing his trousers. Rating: PG-13 Warnings: um.... drinking? Author's notes: Thanks to C and J, who were incredibly helpful and inspirational to me, as always. I hope you enjoy it, rockerchica826!
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“Zabini,” Draco said, with all the appropriate seriousness for the gravity of the situation, “It is your job to make sure my trousers stay on all night.”
“Why me?” Blaise asked, raising a skeptical eyebrow. “And why do you even care? You had a lot of fun when that happened on Halloween, as I recall.”
Draco looked at him, concerned. “Oh, no. Don’t tell me Pansy’s gotten to you, too.”
Blaise smirked. “You know her tricks don’t work on me. But that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy your embarrassment.”
“We all do,” Theodore said from nearby, without looking up from the large text he was reading.
“Homework,” Draco said, turning on him, hands on his hips. “You’re doing homework?”
“What of it?”
“It’s New Year’s Eve!” Draco exclaimed. He gestured to the decorations on the walls of the dungeons, which were quite festive; however, the carefully, sparingly used fairy lights (Draco considered them garish when used in large quantities, and most of his housemates agreed with him) seemed to have had no effect on his friend. “No one does homework on New Years’ Eve.”
Theodore rolled his eyes. “Except people who don’t want to do it when they’re hung-over the next day.”
“He’s got a point,” Blaise said, and headed for the dorms to get his bag. Theodore went back to his book.
Draco made a noise of disgust. He looked down his aristocratic, pointed nose at Theodore, but the look had less effect on the other Slytherin than the fairy lights. “Now you’re just purposefully trying to annoy me.”
He thought he saw Theodore smirk at his book, and shot him a glare as he left the room.
The revelry started just after dinner. Young and old Slytherins gathered in the Common Room to celebrate, following traditions of holiday parties that had been started so long ago that no one actually remembered the date.
The story went that the rather legendary parties had begun even in Salazar’s time, but after the second war was finally over, that seemed to matter much less. Now, it seemed that people just wanted company and camaraderie – either that or they just wanted to get drunk.
But they were Slytherins, and they still had class. Daphne, who was the biggest advocate for retaining the glamour of the old parties despite the somber atmosphere of their seventh year, was busy mixing colorful drinks with names that no one remembered in the corner. The other students were starting to cluster around Pansy and a slightly uneasy-looking Draco, who was being pressured into giving a toast.
“What should we drink to?” Pansy prompted, giving him a little nudge with her elbow.
“It’s New Year’s,” Draco said. “Do we need a reason to drink?”
The Slytherins around him nodded emphatically, and he reconsidered. After a moment, Draco lifted his drink.
“To our seventh year,” he said, a grin starting to spread across his face. “To surviving, with style. To clean slates and new beginnings!”
A loud cheer met his words, and around the room, glasses were upturned as the drinks were consumed. The cluster split into multiple groups of people, mingling around the room, some heading to get a fresh drink, others finding their friends and chattering loudly.
Draco managed to escape Pansy’s clutches, moving towards the drinks. As his fingers closed around his next dose of alcohol, Blaise appeared at his side, his smile flashing white against his dark skin, long fingers closing around the stem of a glass.
“To old friends,” Blaise said, and clinked his drink against Draco’s. “You forgot that one.”
“That goes without saying,” Draco informed him, but he drank anyway. “I wouldn’t have come back if you lot hadn’t.”
“Then we would have ended up unemployed because we never took our N.E.W.T.s,” Blaise said, laughing. “About time we did something respectable, isn’t it?”
“None of us are anywhere close to respectable,” Theodore said from behind Blaise. He emptied his glass of the last drops of alcohol and set it down on the table to be refilled. “We’re here so that we can pretend that we are.”
Draco swallowed a large gulp of his drink and sneered at him. “Speak for yourself. I’m never going to give anyone a reason to suspect me of anything ever again.”
“If you’re including us in that, you’re going to fail miserably,” Blaise said with a smirk. “You can pretend as much as you like, but we know better.”
Draco made a face at him and considered walking away, but he noticed Pansy not far across the room, and reconsidered when she met his gaze. She was up to something, but he wasn’t sure what. “I don’t care what you think,” he said, waving a hand. “I have enough dirt on both of you to make sure you take my secrets to your grave.”
Blaise and Theodore laughed, and Draco decided that whatever Pansy had planned was preferable to enduring their teasing. He was pleasantly buzzed, and he wanted to pretend that everything was as lighthearted as it had been in previous years; his two friends were not helping with that.
He swallowed his drink and grabbed a third, then slipped through the crowd of students in the Common Room, making small talk and flirting lightly with almost everyone he encountered.
Two hours later, Blaise found him on one of the couches, arms slung across the back of it. Pansy was leaning against his side, her legs across his lap as she murmured something in his ear. Draco laughed, and he was still grinning that amused, heavy-lidded grin when he caught sight of Blaise.
“Thanks, but I don’t need your help,” Draco greeted him, curling an arm around Pansy’s shoulders. “Pansy promised that she wouldn’t make any of my clothes disappear tonight.”
Blaise smiled, seeing Theodore move behind the couch out of the corner of his eye. “Did it occur to you that she’s not the only one you might need to worry about?”
Draco blinked at him in confusion. “But—” he began, but stopped when Pansy slid off his lap and got to her feet. “Pans?”
He made a futile, inebriated attempt to get to his feet, but Theodore stopped him easily, putting his hands on his shoulders from behind and forcing him to stay seated. Blaise twirled his wand.
“As much as I hate to be a copycat,” Blaise said thoughtfully, “It really was quite amusing to watch you running around in your boxers.”
“This prank is already old news,” Draco said, rolling his eyes. “Everyone in this room has already seen me like that. They’ll be bored.”
“Oh, not to worry, we’ve thought up a new twist,” Theodore said with a grin. “We’re going for a walk.”
He hauled Draco up by his elbows, and marched him to the door. Draco protested and tried to fight back unsuccessfully, unable to reach his wand; all he succeeded in doing was attracting the attention of the Slytherins nearby. They turned and watched, many eyebrows raised at the spectacle of their fearless leader being manhandled towards the door against his will.
Just before they opened the door, Theodore stopped, and Blaise pointed his wand at Draco. Draco gave an annoyed huff, eyes closing, as if he didn’t want to see it when the spell hit.
Theodore muttered under his breath and flicked his wand, and Draco’s trousers disappeared. A few people snickered. After a moment, they paused; Draco still hadn’t opened his eyes to glare at them.
In the silence, they all heard a very audible snore.
“He’s passed out,” Blaise said disbelievingly, now stuck supporting the blond rather than restraining him.
Theodore snorted. “He’s a bloody lightweight. How many drinks did he have?”
“Seven?” Pansy offered from behind him. “That’s what he told me.”
“Probably five at most,” Blaise said with a sigh. He straightened, and shifted Draco, glaring at Theodore. “This was your idea. Help me.”
A few people watched with vague interest as they all but dragged Draco back to the seventh year dorms, helping him into bed. Their only reward was a deep, snuffling breath from their sleeping friend as he sprawled on the mattress, legs and arms splayed.
Theodore looked at Draco, half expecting him to wake up and spring to his feet, but he didn’t. “Well, guess he’s out for the night,” he said wryly. He turned his head and caught Blaise appraising the snoring blond, eyes dark with interest. “Oi, Zabini. Eyes up here, you pervert.”
Blaise smirked but didn’t look up. “Like you can tell me what to do. I saw you touch his arse when we were carrying him.”
Theodore decided not to answer that. Instead, he reached for Draco’s blanket and draped it over his friend, then pulled the hangings around the bed closed.
“Might as well let him get some sleep,” Theodore said finally. “He’s got years worth of merciless teasing ahead of him.”
A year passed, but not much changed. The backlash from the end of the war had only just begun to fade; hearts had begun to mend, and the world was almost back to normal.
Draco found it thoroughly depressing, and he said as much.
“We’re not supposed to be normal,” he complained to his friends. They were lounging in a booth at a pub, waiting to be served, which had become a bit of a habit for them on weekends and holidays. “The new, reformed world is supposed to be glorious and perfect… but it’s just boring.”
“You think it would have been more exciting if His Royal Darkness had won?” Theodore said dryly.
Draco made a face. “Exciting isn’t exactly the word I’d use.”
“Oppressive,” Blaise supplied, making a lazy gesture with one hand. “Controlling. Or, you know, completely mad. Bit of a shame, really – a great mind like that one, gone completely to waste.”
“I’m glad he’s dead,” Draco said, expression tightening. It needed no explanation, really; the slight to his family at the end of the war was an unforgivable offense, despite what they’d done, and no one pressed the topic.
After only a very short pause, Blaise spoke up again. “We need drinks,” he said, nodding to himself. “We need a lot of drinks. And not just because it’s New Year’s Eve.”
He glanced around, and then stood. “I’ll go and see why it’s taking them so long to bring us our drinks.”
Draco and Theodore, left sitting at the table, looked at each other, then glanced around, restless and sober.
“Why is New Years’ always celebrated with alcohol?” Draco said after a while. “You’d think it’d be a cheerful holiday. Most people probably sing and dance and cherish the new beginning.”
“Most people are morons,” Theodore pointed out. “And also, I don’t believe in clean slates; this new beginning shite is just made up to make you feel better. It’s just the start of another year that I have to survive.”
“I think it just shows how old we’re getting,” Draco said. He grimaced. “Frankly, I don’t need another reminder. Birthdays are quite enough.”
“Misery truly does love company,” Blaise said, reappearing. “I’m getting depressed just looking at you two.”
Draco grabbed his drink from Blaise’s hand, and earned himself a disapproving look in the process. He sneered at his friend and took a swallow. The Firewhiskey burned his throat on the way down and woke him up, making him feel a bit better.
Theodore just shook his head and lowered his head over his own drink, eyes fixed somewhere on the wooden floor of the pub.
“You had plans, just like the rest of us,” Blaise said to Draco. He swirled his drink absentmindedly, watching the liquid lap at the sides of the glass. “Big plans. Politics, marriage, children—what happened?”
“You know what happened,” Draco said irritably. “The war happened.”
“But it’s over,” Blaise pointed out. His tone made it sound like a perfectly reasonable argument, and Draco rather hated him for it at the moment. “It’s all over. We’re supposed to move on.”
Draco took a long drink instead of answering immediately; what he wanted to say would have offended his friend, and was much more trouble than it was worth. But at least he had regained some semblance of an emotional filter in regards to everything war-related – at first he had blown up at anyone who dared to mention his old goals, and how pitifully he had failed in accomplishing any of them.
“Have you moved on?” he asked sourly, after he had swallowed. “Have any of us?”
“Of course not,” Theodore interrupted, glancing at Blaise. “And I thought this was supposed to be the elephant in the room that no one ever talks about. Can we go back to that? For fuck’s sake, Zabini, we’re not even drunk yet.”
With a gesture of agreement in Theodore’s direction, Draco gave Blaise a dirty look. “Exactly. What he said.”
Blaise rolled his eyes. “I thought that you two might have enough sense to be able to talk about it, but never mind. I’m moving on – I’m done with this moping around.” He considered his drink, then raised it in a toast. “This is the last time I try to drink away my misery, so we might as well have fun with it.”
“That’s more like it,” Draco said, grinning despite himself. He didn’t really want to be depressed, anyway; as long as the topic of conversation stayed away from more sensitive topics, he could have fun tonight.
He raised his glass and clinked it against Zabini’s. “To surviving and moving on,” he said. “For real this time.”
Theodore laughed. “Oh, why the hell not?” he said, and toasted them both. “Might as well give it a try.”
The next thing Draco knew, he was being escorted home, pleasantly drunk and having a bit of difficulty with walking in a straight line. That must be, he thought, why there were two different arms around his waist, and two different hands holding his, keeping his arms slung over his friends’ shoulders.
Draco vaguely remembered a futile attempt to run away from them, during which he’d had the very good idea to remove his shirt, but he’d only gotten the thing half-unbuttoned before they’d caught him. It was still partly unbuttoned, if the cool night air on his chest was any indication, but he found the stars much more interesting, even if looking directly upwards didn’t exactly help his coordination.
Laughter sounded in his ear, but he had missed the funny moment that had preceded it. He lowered his head to look at each of his friends in turn, and found himself laughing at them, amused by the way they kept stumbling over their own feet. Then his foot hit an uneven bit of pavement, and he was only prevented from sprawling inelegantly onto the sidewalk by the fact that his friends were much more careful about where they stepped.
“Why didn’t we Floo again?” Draco asked, still laughing, voice a bit slurred. “We’d all be home by now.”
That sent the other two into another gale of laughter, and they stopped. Draco looked at Blaise in confusion, but instead of answering, Blaise kissed him. His whiskey-sweetened tongue ran over Draco’s lips, and Draco felt suddenly, uncomfortably warm – a vaguely familiar feeling, and he remembered the way they had ended up sharing one side of the table, pressed close together, until the entire drunken dynamic had changed.
“Because,” Theodore said, voice close to Draco’s ear, “The night isn’t over.”
Blaise’s hand dropped just a little bit too low, down to Draco’s arse, and a shiver went up Draco’s spine. This could prove to be very interesting, but he wasn’t sure what to think of it just yet.
He felt the sting of Theodore’s teeth on his throat, calling his attention back to the conversation, and the little rush of adrenaline from the bite made Draco think that this was definitely a good idea.
“Remember?” Theodore said, his face very close to Draco’s. “It’s a New Year’s tradition, but this time it’s not a prank. Your trousers are coming off, just like they do every year – and this time, you are not allowed to pass out in the middle of the fun.”