TitLe: New Orleans is Sinking
Archiving: just ask.
Rating: PG.

Date Written: September 4, 2005
Disclaimer: Not mine.

Notes: So the last time I did something like this was on the first anniversary of 9/11. It's stupid but it's therapy, so. Yeah.

“New Orleans is gone,” Harry said listlessly.

Draco slid his hand through Harry’s. Harry gripped it as hard as he could.

“We saved the world,” said Harry. “For what?”

Draco looked at him in shock. “Harry, what are you talking about?”

“I mean…” Harry trailed off and looked around him helplessly. Draco picked up the remote and pointedly clicked off the BBC.

“No, leave it on,” said Harry morosely. “I want to know.”

“Know what?” said Draco sharply. “That people are dying and no one can do anything to stop it? That people die every day?”

“I want to know what I can do,” said Harry. “I want to know that I didn’t spend my whole life fighting Voldemort in order to watch people die by the thousands because of an inept government that I can’t fight. I want to know why any of it mattered.”

Draco stared at him for a long moment, and then sank lower into the couch. He still hadn’t let go of Harry’s hand.

“It matters,” he sighed, “because you cared. Because you did what you had to do. Because that’s all any of us can do.”

“Then why aren’t those people getting help?” Harry bit back. “Why are they dying out there, why isn’t anyone—” He made a strangled noise of frustration.

“I don’t know, Harry,” said Draco. He sounded suddenly very tired. “I don’t know, I’m not there, and it looks from here as if there’s only one person to blame—”

“Right,” said Harry savagely, glaring at the television.

“—But I don’t know.” Draco looked down and it took a few moments for Harry to see that he was studying his left forearm. “In a crisis, you either do what you have to do, or you don’t.”

“Why aren’t more people doing what they have to do?” said Harry in a choked voice. “Why aren’t they doing what they should do?”

Draco looked up, and their eyes met and held for a long moment.

“Because, Harry,” he said softly. “Not everyone is like you.”

Harry started to answer, started to respond that’s not good enough—because it wasn’t. They both knew it. But Draco was looking at him with sadness and admiration and respect, and Harry suddenly couldn’t talk through the lump in his throat.

“There is one thing, though,” Draco continued. Harry reached up and ran his fingers over Draco’s cheek, caressing smooth skin and the lines of fading scars from a war that now seemed ancient.

“What’s that,” he managed to get out.

Draco drew his arms around Harry, and whispered: “People change.”

Harry looked at Draco, and knew that it was true.

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