title: Accidental
fandom: Harry Potter
characters/pairings: Harry/Draco, Ron, Hermione, Neville, Snape
rating: G/Teen
warnings: uncontrollable kissage
summary: A mistake in Potions leads to many more mistakes.
notes: for qkslvr, a very late and very much against my will ficlet on demand. stupid muse... ^_~

The sharp, staccato click of Snape's boot heel against the worn stone of the Potions dungeon floor was like the nailing of a railway spike into Harry's spine. The sun was shining brightly, and it was warm out, but it was dark and dank here, and no one could leave until everyone had completed something. Of course, every time he passed the Slytherin's desks, there were hushed whispers as he inconspicuously offered them comments and suggestions. The only thing he offered as he passed the desks of the Gryffindors were stern glares.

Harry truly hated this class.

At least Ron had it easy. Snape had separated Ron and Harry last class, so Ron was paired with Hermione today. Harry was stuck with poor Neville, who couldn't even measure mushroom tips correctly, and he still mistook witch hazel for parsnip.

This would, sadly, lead to a rather unfortunate event, as he added at least twice as much mushroom tips to the potion as required, and used parsnip in the final step. This did make the potion far more pleasantly aromatic than their classmate's potions, but it had a wholly different effect upon the vile liquid as well. At first, it was just a bubbling. Then, there was a distinct slurping sound. Finally, the potion began to jump, forcing the cauldron off of the fire.

These things did not slip past the notice of the class, or the professor. Hermione desperately tried to signal to Harry to add some carob root, but unfortunately, he misinterpreted her gesture as indicating that he should add lichen powder, and that's when the potion exploded.

It was quite a fuss. Great globs of purple sludge hit Harry square on in the face, his glasses the only protection for his eyes. Neville had, intelligently, hidden under the desk, so he was spared, but Draco Malfoy, who had brought over a sample of his perfect potion for Snape's dithering approval, nearly swallowed a big glob that hit him in the face. There was a pleasant outbreak of chaos that was brought to a shattering end with Snape's vile screech for silence.

In this break of scathing stillness, Harry thought only two things: the gook on his face was burning him in a not so terrible way, and next week, he was partnering with Hermione.

Harry sequestered himself in a shady corner of the courtyard. His cheek was itching where that messed up potion had hit him. And he felt this strange... churning sensation in his belly. It was causing embarrassing reactions in his body, which was still just getting used to the idea of reactions at all. He had caught himself before he had sniffed Hermione's hair, and he was pretty sure Ron didn't think anything of it when he kept bumping into him, but it was best to be careful.

Apparently, he wasn't the only one who thought so. He had been cautiously dodging a few overly friendly Hufflepuffs when he knocked right into Draco Malfoy, scratching matching purple marks on his face, and his eyes were equally wide and dilated.

They stared intently at each other, their mouths open in shock, until they realized that their mouths were open and that they were staring at each other foolishly.

That's when they started kissing.

Ron trampled after Hermione, not really sure why he was. She was insistent that they needed to find Harry right away, but he thought that maybe Harry needed some time to himself. Ron knew what it was like to get hit by an off spell, and often, it was best to just be alone for a bit, and nurse your wounds.

But Hermione had said that they needed to find Harry, so off Ron trotted to find Harry.

They looked in all the usual nooks and crannies, they went to Hagrid's hut, and they even went to the Quidditch fields to snoop around, all to no avail. Then, Hermione got that set look in her eyes, and Ron knew that Harry was sunk. It didn't even take that remarkably long a period of time for her to track him down; it was as if she had simply put her nose to the ground and tracked his scent. Or, perhaps there was something more than just annoyance in the way in which she was holding onto her wand. Ron could never tell.

They found Harry behind the shrubbery outside the main hall, but they didn't recognize him at first, because his face was attached to the face of someone else; someone with pale, ice-blonde hair, sharp features, and a matching purple welt.

Ron felt his stomach and his heart flip positions. "Harry! You're kissing Malfoy! Stop it!!"

Harry flailed, or at least, it appeared as if Harry flailed, seemingly torn between pulling away from Draco, and clinging to him like a wet noodle to the side of a dish. Between smacking grabs at each other, Harry gasped out, "I'm! Trying! To! But! I! Can't!!"

To the horror of all parties involved, Ron and Harry's cries brought something of a crowd, which included the Weasley twins, Filch, and most of the first year broomstick flying class, as well as half of the current herbology class.

It was then that Draco Malfoy was heard to whimper, "Mommy!" There were witnesses. It was an historic event in all their lives.

Hermione, who always managed to keep her head firmly planted on her shoulders, even under the worst of circumstances, did the only logical thing a person could be expected to do. She slapped them both across the face. To their disgust, however, that only served to feed the flames of their ardor for each other.

The interference of a professor was called for at this time, though none of the students could imagine which professor could actually bring any of them comfort in this occasion. The professor who appeared on the scene first was the one most likely to be able to offer assistance, and least desired by either boy.

Snape pushed his way through the ogling crowd with his usual peevishness. He took some delight in shoving a first year Gryffindor out of the way, but he hardly let it show at all. He got to the center of the activity, bringing himself up to his full, somewhat less than impressive, height and prepared to bellow something about troublemaking Gryffindors when he really saw what had disrupted the afternoon.

His eyes widened, wider than any student had ever seen Snape's eyes widen, and he slowly brought his hand up to cover his mouth. A noise not unlike a snicker was heard by those students close to him. Most tried to pretend they had not heard it.

Hermione, standing just before Snape, had never been particularly good at pretending things that were true were false. "Professor Snape, are you laughing?"

"No!" He refuted quickly, very quickly. "Of course not! This is a serious matter!"

"What's gotten into them?" Ron mournfully whined.

Snape did smirk then. "More like what's gotten onto them. It would seem our Mr. Longbottom has, most unbelievably, gotten one of the more subtle potions correct. The wrong one, of course..."

"Potion?" Fred poked George, each grinning from one ear to the next. "What, some kind of love potion?" Dollar signs were flashing behind their matching green eyes.

"A variant thereof, I suppose..." Snape muttered. Sighing, he grabbed Harry and Draco by the elbows. "Well, there's nothing for it... You'll both need to be bathed repeatedly in brine water. It's the only cure."

"Together?" Harry asked, grasping to get a hold of Draco again.

"Good god, no," Snape muttered, struggling to keep them as far apart as he could while marching them through the crowds. "As it is, Mr. Malfoy is going to make life hell for everyone for a long time to come."

They watched the retreating forms of Snape, Harry, and Draco, everyone in varying degrees of stunned hilarity. Ron was just shaking his head, his mouth hanging open, his eyes watery. For hours, all he was capable of doing was muttering 'Malfoy!' under his breath.

The potion did wash off their skin, after repeated scrubbings with nettles soaked in brine. After the third rinse, Harry stopped enjoying the procedure, and was declared fit. Draco required twelve rinsings.

Harry returned to the Great Hall the next morning for breakfast, swearing that his lips would never touch the lips of a boy again, quietly picking the first girl his eyes fell upon on which to nurture a crush. He did not notice the disappointed look of many a young man sitting around him.

Draco remained in the infirmary wing for several more days, reportedly needing psychological care.

Neville was quite surprised at midterm to note that he had received bonus points in Potions, bumping his grade up to passing for the first time ever. He didn't remember doing any extra credit work, but he certainly wasn't going to correct Professor Snape.