The pub made even the Leaky Cauldron look reputable. But even Hogsmeade had a darker side; it was one of the more popular pubs on this street. If you wanted something illegal done, and didn't want to go to Knockturn Alley, this was the place. It was deliberately badly lit, with all sorts of darkened corners in which shady deals went on. It had been rumoured to be one of Lord Voldemort's favorite hangouts in the past, and was still known to host a Death Eater or two.
However, tonight there was no Death Eaters, no Dark Lords, just the usual riffraff who made a marginal living off of the wizarding world's seamier side. People who thought of themselves as having had a few less opportunities than the average wizard, and who therefore felt justified in relieving ordinary folk of a few knuts and sickles here and there. When they got the chance. And when they did, they would come down to this pub to celebrate and commiserate with their brethren.
Certainly, most patrons of this pub weren't that malicious, but two of them were in a particularly nasty mood. The two men stood at the bar, grumbling to each other about new restrictions on the resale of used magical items; it seemed the Ministry wanted the sellers to guarantee their safety and efficiency in writing with each sale.
Now, these two men made their living off selling secondhand wands and various things, and knew that most of their inventory would not meet the new standards. They would lose a lot of money, or they would be forced to go even further underground. Especially, they knew that their new product would be frowned upon by the Ministry. It was a drug, one similar to the Muggle "date rape" drug. It worked magically rather than medicinally, but the effect was the same; it made whoever took it much more amenable to suggestion and coercion.
The two men were just bemoaning their bad luck in life when they noticed a newcomer sat at the end of the bar, looking morose.
The taller of the men nudged his companion. "Hey. D'you think that's who it looks like?"
"Nah, couldn't be. Not in here," replied the other man.
"It sure does look like him, though," insisted the tall man.
"You're full of shit. What would the famous Harry Potter be doing in a dump like this?"
He had to admit his friend had a point. Harry Potter, golden boy, saviour of first the wizarding world and now England's hopes for the Quidditch World Cup, in a dive like this?
"Well, whoever it is, he sure is pretty," mused the first man. "What do you say, wanna go over and see how friendly he is?"
"Why not?" grinned his friend. "Maybe we could try out the new stuff, eh?"
The two men took their drinks and sidled down the bar toward the dark-haired young man. He didn't look up until one man sat on either side of him.
"Scuse me, but me and my friend were wondering if we could buy you a drink," the taller man said.
Before the boy could refuse, the shorter man added, leaning forward to get a better look at his face, "You looked like you could use some cheering up."
"Well, actually," began the boy, looking around him in surprise. He hadn't noticed the men approach, and that was a bad sign. He was sinking further into depression every day; his life wasn't anything like he thought it would be. He had everything he had thought he wanted, but it was all empty to him now. He was an adult now, but he still felt like a kid; he knew he was supposed to be growing up by now, but he still played Quidditch as a job. That didn't help. He also supposed the lack of a normal childhood was starting to have some sort of cumulative effect. Whatever it was, he saw all his friends around him involved in their lives and happy, and it just made him more depressed. Ron and Hermione were engaged to be married, the twins had a successful business, even Neville had found his niche as an assistant to Madame Pomfrey. He was still living in the past. He was starting to avoid contact with his friends from school; in fact, this was the closest he had been to Hogwarts since he finished his schooling. He had thought about going to visit Professor Dumbledore, but had got as far as Hogsmeade before he had lost his nerve. He had wandered around and decided he needed a drink, ducking into the nearest pub. Drinking hadn't helped, either, of course, and he had been just about to leave. "I was just leaving."
"Aw, come on, just one?" urged the taller man.
The other man chimed in. "Yeah, we hate to drink alone."
"Besides," the first man added, "It just started pissing down. You don't want to go out in that rain."
Harry looked back and forth between the two men, then glanced out the window at the rain. He sighed. "Why not."
"Excellent!" said the first man. He signaled for the bartender and turned back to Harry. "My name's Alfred. This is William," he indicated the other man. As he did so, he was sure he saw a scar on the boy's forehead. "Here," he said, as if surprised, "You're not Harry Potter, are you?"
Harry sighed and hung his head. He could never escape. "Yes," he admitted, studying the bar intently, so he didn't see the man drop a small tablet into the pint the bartender had just delivered.
"Mr. Potter! What an honor!" William enthused, pumping Harry's hand quickly, distracting him while the tablet dissolved, effervescing slightly.
Harry winced. He hated it when people called him that, it reminded him of... someone. "Please, just call me Harry," he pleaded, wishing he had never come here. He would just have this one drink, to be polite, and then go home. "Thank you for the drink," he said, picking it up and taking a long draught. He coughed; it seemed to go down the wrong way, burning his throat a bit.
"All right, Harry?" Alfred asked with concern, clapping him on the back, then leaving his hand there.
Harry nodded, disturbed by the man's hand on him but he didn't want to be rude. He took another drink to soothe his throat, and this time the liquid slid quickly down his throat, not bothering him at all. It was very good, and Harry found himself draining the glass, and signaling for another before he could stop himself.
The bartender set down another round, and Harry tried to pay, but the men wouldn't hear of it. "The lads will never believe we had a pint with Harry Potter!" laughed William as he paid.
"Drink up, Harry," urged Alfred, after slipping in another pill.
Harry did, taking a long drink and nearly sliding off his stool. He wasn't usually this quickly affected by alcohol; he must have forgotten to eat again.
"Whoa there, Harry," William said, steadying him. "Easy now."
"Maybe we should go sit in one of those corner booths," suggested Alfred, winking at William. "Much more comfortable, not as far to fall."
"Absolutely, come on, Harry," replied William, guiding the unsteady boy to a dark corner. The bartender watched them go with an expression of disgust, but said nothing.
"There you go, Harry, slide on in," said Alfred, scooting in beside him while William sat on the other side, effectively trapping the boy. "Much better."
Harry looked from one man to the other, panic rising in him. The men were leering at him, much too close. But he couldn't seem to form the correct words; the room was spinning and bright flashes of light were appearing at the edges of his vision. "I..." he began, but couldn't form any more words.
"Pretty thing like you shouldn't ought to go wandering around all alone," Alfred breathed, and Harry was horrified to feel a hand on his thigh, moving up.
"Yeah," laughed William unpleasantly, and a hand slid under Harry's shirt. "You could get hurt."
Harry made a strangled sound in the back of his throat as the men's hands slid over his well-muscled body. But it was like he was paralyzed; he couldn't move, couldn't speak, couldn't keep the men from touching him wherever they wanted. The room spun faster and his vision began to grey out; he clung to consciousness desperately because he feared what would happen if he passed out. No one came to help, no one intervened, no one seemed to care. Harry whimpered again as Alfred squeezed his cock through his unzipped fly, and William's hand slid into the back of his trousers. How had his trousers got opened? Harry struggled to focus, to stay awake, as a hand explored his chest, pinching a nipple hard.
"Nice," panted William, sliding his hand as far down the cleft of Harry's ass as he could. "God, I can't wait to slam into that tight little ass..."
"Me, I fancy fucking that sweet little mouth," commented Alfred, as if they were discussing a menu. Harry's head slumped back as he struggled not to pass out. It was all he could do; though the men's touches made him want to vomit, he couldn't even do that. He thought he'd finally lost consciousness when the little light that made it to this booth was abruptly blocked off. He struggled to focus as he heard a voice, a voice he knew he should recognize. A voice that haunted him still.
"Get your filthy hands off him," came the deep, silky voice, barely above a whisper but carrying the authority of a shout.
Alfred looked up in disbelief. "Who the fuck are you? This here's our little toy and you can go screw yourself."
"I think not," hissed the voice, and as Harry squinted he could make out an imposingly tall, black form looming above them. "I will tell you one more time," the voice said almost reasonably. "Do not touch him again."
"Bugger off, you old git," William replied. "He wants it, the little slut." That was the last words Harry heard the man speak, for suddenly William was being dragged by his hair from the booth, his hands leaving Harry finally.
Harry got the impression of a large body flying across the room before Alfred's hands were gone too. From the corner of his eye he saw Alfred start to draw his wand, but before it even cleared his robes, Harry's rescuer has his own out, barking a spell and the man went flying in a burst of blue light.
That was the last thing Harry remembered before he gave in to oblivion; his eyes rolled back and the room disappeared, mercifully, at last.