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Snape could hate Valentine's Day for the omnipresence of red alone; he hates red. Even the bright, heart-shaped splashes of the color which look nothing like Gryffindor scarves, or Weasley locks, or the thick gush of blood from a well-aimed Sectumsempra. Even that red bites at his nerves, makes him want to run. Where he would go is beyond him. Every-bloody-one celebrates Valentine's Day.

Severus doesn't have to rest on his hatred of red to justify his all out loathing for the "holiday," however. No, the fact that there has been a day every year for the entirety of his life to mock the things he hasn't had (and thought himself unlikely to ever have) is more than enough.

Which is why when Draco looks at him across the breakfast table on February 14th, in the First Year of Our Lord's Really Truly Finally Dead Death, and says, "You can get home on time tonight, yeah?" Severus asks, "Whyever would I wish to?"

This last is probably a bit harsh. Draco does as he always does and hides his hurt in some little gesture of etiquette. In this case, dabbing his mouth with his napkin. "I planned us a nice evening."

Severus really wants to tell Draco to cancel, but he's already hurt him once in the span of ten seconds. Sometimes Severus wishes Draco were, well, anyone else, and he could have no compunction whatsoever about repeating such an action immediately. Instead he says, "I can't see any reason for me to be late."

All the same, Severus thinks about inventing one as six o'clock rolls around. His colleagues are clearing out of their offices, avoiding him as they usually do. The lack of Valentine's wishes would make Severus cheery if it didn't make him miss Albus so bloody much. As he's bound to be miserable either way, Severus decides to make Draco happy, and fulfill his promise to be at home at the expected hour.

Severus Apparates home and hangs his outer robes in the entry closet. There is the smell of sugar in the air, thick but somehow not overwhelming. Severus pokes his head into the kitchen. Figgy sqeaks, "Master Draco says dinner will have to be waiting, Master Severus!"

Severus isn't all that hungry anyway. He never is on Valentine's Day. "Where is Master Draco?"

"In sir's bedroom, Master Severus."

Admittedly, this is a cheering thought. Draco in the bedroom is always a cheering thought. Severus makes his way through the house. He can hear Draco's Victrola playing. The tune is slow, jazzy. Sexy. Severus catches a lyric or two about grapes, but tunes them out. He suddenly has a feeling he doesn't want to be distracted by details.

When he opens the door to their shared room, he realizes how very right he is.

He can't help himself, the first thing he says is, "Tell me the spell is temporary."

Draco pouts but answers dutifully, "Will fade by tomorrow morning."

Severus sighs in relief because while pink might be considerably less heinous than red, Severus doesn't want to sleep in a bed of ice-pink silk sheets until he can get Figgy to purchase a new set. That concern put aside, Severus silently considers that at the moment, with Draco splayed out for his pleasure, decked out in equally ice-pink thigh-highs, held up with their matching garters attached to a matching garter belt, pink might be his new favorite color.

The best part, however, even better than Draco's lips, colored confections of glitter-pink, or his fairy-pink dusted eyes, is the corset cinching at his waist, his chest. It matches everything else, of course, and Draco's nipples, moving with slight, hitched breaths under the constraint of the piece, are just a shade darker, dusting its top edge. The laces, which Draco has undoubtedly pulled tighter than he should with the aid of magic are silken, twisting and pooling over his legs.

Severus stalks to him, taking one length of lacing in his hand and letting it slip over his palm. "I came home on time."

Draco's, "I know you don't like Valentine's Day," is breathy from nerves and an inability to take anything more than quick, shallow breaths.

Severus kisses him. The gloss tastes of sugar cookies. "Why this, then?"

"I thought I could change that," Draco whispers. The declaration is bold, as all Draco's declarations are. Severus can hear the catch of breath that has nothing to do with his apparel.

Severus runs a hand from the underside of Draco's right foot up the inside of his thigh. He lifts one garter away from skin and bends to bite at the newly-revealed skin. He then gently replaces the garter. "You did?"

Draco grabs at Severus' hands, bringing them up to his hips so that Severus' pinkies are brushing the lace top of the garter-belt, his thumbs the satin edge of the corset. Severus traces a thumb over Draco's quivering stomach, along the bottom line of the corset. Draco blinks at him, his eyes more luminescent than usual in their done up way. "I hoped."

"Let us see," Severus murmurs, enjoying this moment of fragility in his lover. Severus can and will love Draco at any given moment, but there are times when Draco's willingness to give himself up unto Severus is more breath-robbing than any corset could ever hope to be.

With a touch of his fingers to the wand inside his trouser pocket, Severus is naked. He has been ready for quite some time. He says softly, "These are in my way," his hands going to the garters at Draco's thighs. Draco moves to help him, but Severus pins him with a look, and Draco returns his hands politely to his sides.

Severus unclips the garters one by one. He peels the leggings off of Draco but only so as to remove the garter belt in their wake. Then he pulls them back on. They're loose at the thigh, crumpling against Draco's ivory cream skin. Severus slides back against the silk of the sheets and twists until he is sitting, leaning back against the bevy of large silk-swathed pillows. He spreads his legs slightly, looks at Draco and says, "Changing my mind does involve some effort, Draco."

Draco surges up, kissing him again. The kiss is short, intense. Draco normally lingers over these sorts of things, taking his time with Severus, teaching Severus that time is something they have in a sometimes-necessary reversal of teacher-pupil roles. Draco breaks off from Severus' mouth with a sharp, small intake of breath and in the second that sound hits Severus' ears, Draco sinks onto Severus' cock.

The sturdy whalebone structure of the corset presses against Severus' chest, different from the familiar muscled sturdiness of Draco's bare chest. Draco's slide is smooth, uninhibited and Severus can hardly string together the thought, "He made himself ready for this," underneath the maelstrom of "smooth" and "oh" and "Draco" and "oh" that has taken over his mind.

Draco rocks up gently. Severus' fingers scrabble for purchase. He curls and twists them in the corset's lacings, bringing his hands and the lacing up to Draco's bare arms, pressing into the damp skin tightly enough that Severus knows, later, when he lets go, there will be the aftermath of pink on Draco's skin. For a moment. Before it fades.

Draco whimpers, rocking more desperately on Severus' cock. Severus drops one hand to Draco's cock, wrapping it loosely in the length of pink satin. The wrapping is nowhere near tight enough to stop Draco from coming, just an encouragement not to until Severus says otherwise.

Draco picks up on the hint.

He's a good boy for another few minutes and then it's all, "please," and "Severus," and "please." Severus wraps his hand over the satin and the skin of Draco's cock--nearly as smooth--and Draco comes, his head thrown back, unable to breathe in his position. The tightening of Draco's entire body, the line of his neck, the dusky hue of his skin brings Severus over the edge and he lets go, coming even as Draco falls over onto his chest, heavy in his after-glow.

As soon as he can remember how his fingers work, Severus unties the knot at the base of Draco's spine, loosening the corset just enough to allow for his lover to inhale deeply. The action pushes the corset, and Draco, even further onto Severus.

When he has caught his breath, Draco asks hoarsely, "Happy Valentine's Day?"

Severus simply slips his hands over the wet skin of Draco's back, palms down, knuckles brushing the underside of the corset, and leaves them there.

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Skin by egelantier, photo by microbophile