Title: DeuxAuthor/Artist: Julia (youokayhoney/demon_dear)Rating: G/PGPairing or Character(s): Albus Dumbledore; mention of Gellert Grindelwald and Severus Snape; implied previous AD/GGDisclaimer: I would hope that JKR has better things to do with her time that write slashy fanfiction about her own characters.Warnings: None, besides the obvious spoilers for DH.Author's Note: The Albus-POV companion to Lover.My Albus-voice is so much more normal than my Gellert-voice. However, Albus is rather more clueless.Eighty years, Gellert, and you are still as gorgeous as you once were. Your expression is colder now, perhaps; your hair barely shorter, but still the same brilliant, amazing, angelic-looking man I loved so many years ago. For a moment I even fancy that I see that old mischief in your eyes as I draw closer, though that must just be the sun’s reflection, or an aging man’s mind playing tricks on him.Sometimes I wonder if you ever think about that summer- if you think about the nights that the owls almost died from exhaustion caused by our sending them back and forth so many times with heavy letters, even if it was only the scant distance between our windows. I wonder if you think about the other nights, the ones that saw you slipping out my window into the tree between my house and your great-aunt’s at unholy hours, then climbing easily through its branches and into your own bedroom window, grinning back at me before you closed it behind you.I can’t imagine that you do- you, after all, were never one to let emotions run away with you as much as I. Even for the past five years, while Muggles and wizards alike died on your orders, I put off this duel because I knew the surge of memories it would bring back. And once the death toll mounted much too high to keep ignoring, then I came. And now- well, now I can barely bring myself to face you, old friend, not with that look in your eyes and that daring, teasing smile on your face. But I have to. And the worst part may be that it really is for the greater good.---There have been times I wished that you were still with me, old friend, but never as much I do now. I can only picture the chaos if you were here. You would be scolding me for being so foolish as to put on the ring, much as Severus is doing now. You would be asking delightedly about the Stone, if it had worked, what it had done. You would be pondering how to destroy the Horcrux without harming the Hallow. But none of these are the reason I need you most now. No, the real reason is the curse on the ring. I am almost certain that you would know how to break it, or that you would find some way to do it that no one else would have thought of in a million years. Even if I could somehow get word to you, though, I doubt you would answer. I doubt even more that you would consent to help me if you did answer.You must hate me by now, Gellert. You always did hate to be kept in one place for too long- I spent far too much time with you that summer not to know that. Almost every waking moment, and, nearer the end, so many sleeping moments as well- how could I not know you? I don’t think you were ever as attached to me as I was to you. You were much too smart for that, too good at thinking ahead to be caught in the trap of loving someone that you had only known for a few months.No, Severus, I am not unconscious, merely thinking. The curse is contained now, you said it yourself. Stop making that face. I know I am a stupid old man at times, but I am not yet senile, despite the spectacular lack of wits I have shown this evening.But Gellert, I hope that the news of my death might bring you happiness, since it is not likely that any of my other actions since the night before Ariana died have done so. Because I must die soon, old friend. Without you here to help, this curse will kill me. I refuse to die slowly and without any dignity at all. However I act, it seems that, at heart, I am still the proud boy you used to know.Crossposted to my fic journal, demon_dear, and grindeldore.