Kitchen Warfare

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1.

Kitchen Warfare

Ron nicked a Christmas pie from George's stash while he wasn't looking, and threw himself into a sprawl on the couch next to Harry. Snickering as George turned and eyed his pile suspiciously, he bit into his pie, and looked around.

"Where's Malfoy?" he asked, while still chewing.

Hermione rolled her eyes at him, before turning back to Fleur. They were having a discussion in French, which Harry hadn't known Hermione even spoke. Ginny looked up from the scarf she was knitting.

"He was in the kitchen last I saw," she said, shooting a conspiratorial glance at Harry. "Stop being an arse. He has a name. You know his name."

Ron frowned, finishing off the pie, and dodging the cushion that George threw at him. "What's he doing in there? He's been hanging around mum since the second he got here."

Harry rolled his eyes. Ginny sniggered. Ron's frown deepened.

"What?"

"It's nothing," Harry said, watching Ginny resume her knitting. Molly had some needles clacking away in the corner on their own, but watching Ginny was somehow soothing.

"By nothing, he means Draco is trying to learn how to cook," Ginny said, smirking at Harry again. "He won't let Harry teach him."

Harry scowled. "Leave off! It's a pride thing. Best left alone."

Ron seemed to perk up, and Ginny, who had just finished a row, stabbed him with her free needle.

"Don't even think about it," she said sternly.

"What?" Ron yelped, his attempt at an innocent expression wilting under Ginny's very Molly-like glare. "I wasn't going to do anything."

"I make him breakfast in bed on Sundays," Harry commented, eyes returning to Ginny's knitting as she started the next row. "He just wants to return the favour. He thinks I don't know, but he's actually not all that good at being sneaky."

"Clinging to mum every time he's here is a dead giveaway too," Ginny snickered.

Ron frowned again. "Don't you two have three house elves? Kreacher, Marni, and…Tinkle?"

Harry scowled. "It's Tinsel, and you know it."

Ginny giggled. Ron gave up pretending to be confused, and laughed openly.

"Leave off, she chose the name herself," Harry said, still feeling irritated. "It was just bad timing that we took her in around Christmas that year. It's still better than the nasty slurs her former family called her!"

"I think it's nice," Ginny said. "Giving them Sunday off and cooking your own food."

"You spend too much time around 'Mione, mate."

"I heard that!"

Ron winced, and smiled sweetly at her. She rolled her eyes, and said something in French that made Fleur cackle. Ron scowled, and burrowed deeper into the couch.

"It was Draco's idea, not mine," Harry said, watching Ginny again. "He's the one who knows all the pureblood gossip. Heard about Tinsel and conspired to free her. Very Gryffindor of him. I think I'm finally rubbing off on him a bit."

"Only just now? How have you both survived three years of marriage?" Ginny snickered.

Harry scowled at her, and Ron wrinkled his nose.

"Speaking of that," Ron said, glancing towards the kitchen. "Now that I think on it, he's been bugging mum every time he's here, since he finally got the nerve to start visiting with you. Has he cooked for you yet?"

Ginny cackled into her knitting.

"Not yet," Harry said frowning at her again. "He's a perfectionist."

"You two are bloody barmy together," Ron said with a sigh. "Cooking for him on Sundays, secret lessons with mum."

"Speaking of lessons," Ginny said, shooting Harry a smirk. "When are you going to get the nerve to ask?"

"Ask what?" Harry asked innocently.

"You can't take your eyes off my knitting whenever I'm at it," Ginny said, sounding far too amused for Harry's liking. "I'm happy to teach you, if you want to learn."

"Nah," Harry said with a shrug. "I just like watching."

"Barmy," Ron muttered under his breath again.

"Do you know your husband is gossiping with mum like an old lady?"

Harry glanced at Charlie as he walked in levitating a steaming teapot and several cups.

"Not a cooking lesson this time?"

"They're discussing some old bint over tea," Charlie said, setting the tea down and sitting half on Ron.

"Oi!"

"If you don't want to get sat on, don't imitate a couch!"

Ron muttered darkly under his breath, pulling his left leg free and moving to sit normally.

"Mum never used to gossip before Draco starting coming here with you," Ginny commented. "He's a terrible influence."

"For that, and many more things, believe me," Harry muttered, getting up with a sigh. "I better go retrieve him."

"Nah, leave him be," Charlie said. "I think she's about to start making pudding. Draco makes a brilliant sticky date pudding!"

Harry blinked stupidly. "He what?"

Ginny kicked Charlie. Yelping, he glared at her, but catching the look on her face, quickly calmed down.

"Has he been making stuff for you?"

"No."

Harry set his face in the stubborn expression that always beat every Weasley except Ginny. Charlie glanced around, back at Harry's face, then over at George, who now appeared to be dozing.

"Charlie."

"Fine, yes, he has," Charlie said, making Ginny release an exasperated sound. "He's just testing things. I forgot to keep it a secret."

Harry frowned. "I love sticky date pudding."

"Why do you think he's learning to make it?" Ginny asked, prodding Ron with a needle. "It's good, isn't it? I'm sure he'll make it for you soon, Harry."

Ron blinked at her. "Malfoy made that? Last Tuesday? How did I miss that? Blimey, that was good. Bugger. Can't tease him for that."

"Ha!" Harry said sharply, making George jolt awake, and Ginny drop a stitch with a curse.

"What?"

"I knew he was lying about where he was that day! His nose twitches a little when he lies to me! I knew that was a lie-twitch!"

Ron scoffed. "Bloody barmy, the two of you."

"Master Harry?"

Harry groaned.

"Master Harry, Sir? Please be waking up!"

Groaning again, Harry rolled over and blinked his eyes slowly open, peering over the side of the bed at the house elf currently wringing her hands.

"What is it, Tinsel?"

"Tinsel is not knowing what to do!"

Harry sighed, pressing his face into the pillow and groaning again. He stuck out his other arm, intending to whack Draco awake, but found only empty bed next to him.

"What's he done?" he asked, turning to look at Tinsel again.

"Today is being Saturday, Master Harry!"

Rolling onto his back, Harry rubbed at his eyes. The clock on the wall opposite the end of their bed was displaying a rather depressing number for a Saturday morning.

"What's he done?"

"Today is being Saturday, and Saturday is not being Sunday! Today is not being Sunday, Sir!"

"Tinsel, you know you don't need to call me Sir," Harry mumbled, hearing the worry make her voice increase in pitch.

"Tinsel is sorry, Master Harry, but Tinsel is not knowing what to be doing!"

"About what?" Too early in the morning for worried house elves. Not after the week he'd had.

"We is supposed to be cooking every day but Sunday, Master Harry. This is being the rules. Today is being Saturday, and Saturday is not being Sunday. We is supposed to be cooking, but cooking already is doing.""

Harry blinked, struggling to interpret her as she sounded increasingly panicked and nonsensical. After a few moments, everything became clear. He rolled back onto his side, and leaned half over the edge of the bed to get closer to her.

"Today is Saturday, and you'd normally be making us breakfast on Saturday, but you can't, because someone is already cooking?"

"Yes, Master Harry, that is what Tinsel has been saying!" she wailed, wringing her hands. "What should Tinsel do?"

"Draco is cooking?"

Tinsel nodded, looking panicked.

Harry grinned, tossing the sheets aside and looking around for his slippers and robe.

"You're not to do anything, Tinsel. Just stay out of his way."

"Tinsel will tell him you is coming down!"

"No!" Harry yelped, spinning around so fast he almost fell over. Tinsel looked confused, and started wringing her hands again.

"You is not going down?"

"No, I am, but don't tell him!" Harry said.

"Master Harry wants Tinsel to lie to Master Draco?"

Harry groaned. "No, just don't tell him I'm coming down? It's a surprise, Tinsel."

"A surprise for Master Draco?"

Harry nodded, edging towards the door. "That's right, so no telling him I'm coming down, alright?"

"If Master Harry says so," Tinsel said, sounding still very confused.

Harry nodded at her again, before hurrying out of the room and down the stairs. He wasn't actually going to go into the kitchen, but he wanted to see for himself, before hurrying back up to bed to be 'surprised'.

He could hear Draco before he even reached the door to the kitchen. Their house had a semi-open plan, so the kitchen just had an open arch leading to the dining room. Harry sneaked close and peered around the corner.

Once Charlie had let slip about the testing at Christmas, Harry had started to make Ron sneak him things Draco made, now that Ron was also aware Draco was doing it. He'd nearly got caught last time, and hadn't taken kindly to Harry shoving him under his desk, cake and all, when Draco had walked into his study.

It was lucky that Draco was finally launching his surprise, Harry didn't think Ron would sneak him any more samples. His demands in return were getting ridiculous enough that he was obviously trying to get Harry to give up, rather than put his own foot down. Fool, only Ginny could out-stubborn Harry.

"Why is Master Harry spying on Master Draco?"

Harry barely managed to muffle his yelp of surprise, and whipped back behind the wall separating the kitchen and dining room. Once he felt he wouldn't swear, he looked down at Marni.

The house elf stared back curiously, holding a slipper. Looking down, Harry realised he'd forgotten one in his haste, and accepted it with a sheepish expression. Tinsel must have gone straight to tell the others what he was doing.

"I know it's pointless, but please, please stop sneaking up on me, Marni."

"Marni was suspecting Master Harry not be wanting Master Draco to notice, so Marni being quiet," the house elf whispered.

Harry sighed, rubbing his forehead. Once again, he found himself immensely glad house elves didn't gossip outside their family. What was he doing, sneaking around just to catch a glimpse of his husband cooking? Even worse? He was fully planning on getting back to bed before Draco could notice.

"It is being a curiosity, Master Draco cooking," Marni whispered, when Harry said nothing. "Tinsel is spying from the north-west corner."

Harry opened his mouth, then closed it. Peering around the corner, he quickly spied Tinsel's nose and feet peeking out around the curtains. He marvelled at how quickly she'd managed to tell Marni what was happening and sneak into the kitchen to watch. Shaking his head, he shifted his eyes to Draco.

He was humming to himself, which was not so unusual, but it was interrupted by a curse every now and then. Harry had no doubt he was tossing out anything not perfect. The smell of bacon was making Harry's stomach grumble, and he was tempted to try and nick some.

For a moment, he considered employing Marni. He was remarkably good at sneaking, although Tinsel was still better, but more loyal to Draco. In fact, Harry was lucky she hadn't informed him that Harry was down regardless of what Harry had said. Kreacher was out of the question, too loud, and too quick to pass vocal, and colourful, judgment.

"Bloody buggering hell!"

Harry jerked back, and ducked away from the archway.

"I can see you, Tinsel! I said that I have everything under control!"

This was followed by a loud clattering sound, and several colourful exclamations. Harry couldn't help but snigger. Marni made a similar sound of amusement.

"You has made breakfast four times, Master Draco, Sir! Tinsel can be helping!"

"I don't want help, Tinsel! I'm doing this on my own! Go find Kreacher and go to the market."

There was a shocked gasp, and Harry struggled to stay silent as he felt laughter bubbling up in his throat.

"Kreacher and Tinsel be going to market at eleven sharp on Saturdays, Master Draco. You be knowing this! Time is not yet nine, not yet nine is not eleven! Only during the week is we be going to market early!"

"Oh for the love of— shit! Bloody...argh!"

"The eggs be burning, Master Draco, Sir!"

"I'm aware of that, thank you, Tinsel," Draco replied, in the tone he reserved just for when he was annoyed at Tinsel, and trying desperately not to let her know.

"Tinsel can help!"

Harry pressed a hand firmly over his mouth to try and muffle the laughter that was starting to escape him. Draco was muttering more curses again.

"Tinsel can stay where she is! I will not have you touching this food today! Only me!"

"That was not right thing to say to Tinsel," Marni whispered to Harry, who nodded. Draco was obviously too distracted, he knew better with Tinsel.

"Tinsel touched the food already, Master Draco! Tinsel is sorry! Tinsel touched food at market last week! Should Tinsel start moving food by magic? Tinsel likes to hold and carry but Tinsel will stop for Master Draco!"

Draco released an exasperated groan, and Harry decided to return to bed, before he gave himself away laughing too loud. He had a feeling he'd be waiting a while for breakfast.

Harry was just starting to doze, when Draco walked into the bedroom and fell face first onto the bed with a groan.

"You okay?" Harry asked, hoping mention of breakfast was imminent.

"Why didn't we adopt some cats?" Draco groaned, shifting just enough to press his forehead to Harry's shoulder.

"What's the matter?"

Draco sighed, and slung an arm over Harry, pressing closer to him.

"I negotiated us breakfast in bed, Tinsel should magic it up in a moment. She's cooking it now."

Harry struggled to keep a straight face, and ran his hands through Draco's hair. As usual, Draco relaxed completely at the gesture. He really shouldn't be surprised Tinsel had stolen the kitchen back. She did it when Harry tried to cook on any other day than Sunday too.

"Did you go all the way downstairs just to ask her for breakfast in bed? You could have summoned her."

Draco groaned again, pressing his face harder into Harry's shoulder.

"We only eat in bed on Sundays, you know what she's like about routine breaking. You've had a hard week, I didn't want to wake you."

Harry smiled, fingers drifting to massage the base of Draco's neck.

"Thanks," he murmured. "Breakfast in bed sounds good today, excellent idea."

Draco made an agreeable sound, pulling himself up just in time to shoot Tinsel a glare when she popped in, two trays of breakfast hovering next to her. Harry managed to restrain a snicker...just.

Harry swatted at the hand that was shaking his shoulder, closing his eyes tighter and burrowing into the blankets. There was an amused snort, and then the bed dipped. Harry frowned, still half asleep, but knowing something was wrong. Turning over he opened his eyes, blinking the sleep away, to find Draco fully dressed. It took him a while to realise what was wrong with that.

"It's Sunday," he muttered, closing his eyes again. "Why are you dressed? What time is it?"

Harry almost always woke before Draco on Sundays, it helped with the ritual of making breakfast in bed for them both.

"Just after nine," Draco said.

A moment later, and Harry wrinkled his nose. His eyes opened again, and he sat up. Hovering above the end of the bed were two trays of breakfast. He blinked stupidly at them for a moment, before his brain finally woke up, and he realise Draco had stolen Sunday cooking from him.

"How did you get Tinsel to break routine?" he asked, wondering instead how Draco had woken before him on a Sunday. He was rather proud of him actually, beating Harry to the kitchen on a Sunday prevented Tinsel from interfering and stealing the kitchen back. "If you were hungry, you should have woken me."

Draco sat the little straighter against the headboard, flicking his wand and making the trays drift over so they could settle them.

"I made it," he said.

Harry surveyed the full breakfast spread, wondering how many batches Draco's perfectionism had made him make. Everything Ron had sneaked for him had been baking, he was surprised Draco had decided to surprise him with a savoury breakfast, but he wasn't about to complain.

"What's that detection spell?" he asked cheekily. "The one that detects food poisoning stuff?"

Draco scowled, and gave him a gentle shove, obviously afraid to knock over the trays, or Harry was sure he would have walloped him with a pillow.

"You've had an awful week at work, I do something nice, and this is how you repay me? I should make you sleep on the couch!"

Harry chuckled, picking up a piece of bacon. "We both know I'd wake up dangerously close to falling off, with you curled up between me and the back of the couch," he said, before taking a bite.

"One time," Draco muttered under his breath, taking a sip of his tea, but watching Harry out of the corner of his eye.

Sampling more of the food, Harry wasn't surprised that it was perfect. Draco was such a ridiculous perfectionist. He was tempted to reveal that he'd known about lessons with Molly, but decided to let Draco have his secret.

"It's really good," he said, wishing Draco would stop watching him eat, it was making him feel awkward. "This is a nice surprise, can I expect this often?"

"Merlin no," Draco said. "You can keep breakfast on Sundays! Too much effort getting up before you. I missed my sleep in."

Harry laughed, glad that Draco finally stopped watching him and ate some himself. "How early did you get up?"

Draco shrugged. "Early."

Harry sniggered into his tea cup. He'd ask Tinsel later how many times Draco had made and tossed breakfast before being satisfied. He had no doubt she'd have been spying on him.

When they were finished, and Draco banished the trays and things back to the kitchen, Harry dragged him over and nuzzled into his neck, feeling full and sleepy again.

"Thanks, love," he muttered.

"Oh, are we just going to stay in bed then?" Draco asked. "I thought you wanted to go to Diagon Alley today."

"My husband just made me breakfast in bed," Harry muttered. "Let me digest for a moment, then I'm giving you a thorough shag."

Draco perked up, and Harry chuckled into his neck.

"Maybe I should cook for you more often if that's your reaction," Draco comments, running his hand up and down Harry's side. "You hate morning shags on a Sunday. I can't get more than a good snog out of you."

"Usually because I've been up cooking for you, lazy sod," Harry said.

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