Testament to the lust Always around the sleek hands of midnight Temptations running ferocious Eluding into each other Only a lovers language Sealed lips but steady hips Intention to escapism Casting spells of liaison mystically Appetence for freedom to the floodgates Passing through the essence of bliss Theory of immortality Gramercy for the unconditional acceptance
Ever since the expanded info on Malfoy family history was shared on Pottermore I’ve wondered about the dynamics between the Blacks and the Malfoys. Because it really rather seems that Malfoys value power more than purity, and I wonder if that wouldn’t be a source of some conflict between them occasionally? Especially right after the Statute of Secrecy was passed, I can’t imagine them being fast friends then, since the Malfoys were originally against it. There must have been some initial distrust.
But I admit that I started thinking about this because I like the idea of Lucius and Narcissa having the occasional passive aggressive disagreement about What’s Best For The Family.
Draco had heard the other Houses all had shared Dormitories and had always wondered whether the reason Slytherin gave all their students individual rooms was to give them all the space they needed to come up with various truly nefarious plots. Or maybe it was just because they were the House most likely to murder each other in their sleep, given the opportunity.
Either way, he was grateful for the solitude as it allowed him the freedom to pace.
He marched forwards and backwards, sighing and tutting loudly in frustration every so often. Considering it was almost 3am, he was certain somebody would have Crucioed him by now had the room been shared.
Draco was a logical person. One didn’t grow up a beloved son of households Malfoy and Black by displaying a propensity for letting emotion taint one’s decision making.
Draco Malfoy was a logical person and as such, he made his decisions by weighing up the facts and coming to the most viable conclusion based on them. He looked at the crumpled piece of paper lying on his bed, and groaned once again.
He immensely enjoyed the fact that the entire school currently hated Potter, of course he did. It brought him great pleasure to see the pompous little prat knocked off his pedestal, skulking round like a filthy little rat. But Draco was simultaneously astonished at the fact that the entire school currently hated Potter. Was everybody utterly stupid? Had everyone except him completely lost their minds? Potter? The Heir of Slytherin?
Draco scoffed at the thought. And what, Weasley was his devious sidekick?
An image of Granger dressed all in black cracking a whip resembling a snake, her wild hair whipping around her flashed through his head and he abruptly stopped pacing.
He took a few deep breaths to clear his head and then collapsed backwards onto the bed, his arm bent over his eyes.
He had been weighing up his options ever since that day in the summer when he had gone to buy school supplies. The day after he had overheard his parents discussing what was going to happen at Hogwarts that year, how his father had overheard “that red-headed buffoon” telling anyone who would listen at work that he, his “herd of stampeding swamp spawn” and Potter were going to go to Diagon Alley the next day to buy supplies.
He had settled quietly on the steps and listened to his parents arguing over what must happen. Had heard his mother voice her doubts and heard his father immediately silence her in the dangerously quiet voice by saying “Careful, Narcissa. Your bloodline flaws are bubbling perilously close to the surface these days.”
Draco had heard his father use that tone only once before.
When Draco had dared to ask whether Muggleborns were somehow more powerful than Purebloods because their magic had managed to somehow surface despite their parents having no powers at all.
Lucius’ eyes had turned ice cold with fury as he had said “Sanctimonia vincet semper, Draco. The words of House Malfoy. Do you know what they mean?” Draco had shook his head. “It means purity will always conquer.”
Purity will always conquer.
Draco ran the words through his mind. Of course, the Malfoy bloodline wasn’t entirely pure because the pool of Purebloods was incredibly small and the pool of “acceptable” Purebloods even smaller (no respectable Malfoy would be caught dead marrying into a family of blood-traitors like the Weasleys) and since neither the Malfoys nor the Blacks (fortunately) were into the whole “marrying your sister” thing, there were a lot of half-bloods dotted throughout the family tree.
He picked up the piece of paper and read the words once more, the words imprinted on his mind he had read them so often.
He didn’t know what had compelled him to pick up the book in Flourish & Blotts and tear out the page on the creature he had heard his mother mention. “But Lucius, what if the basilisk doesn’t just stick to the Mudbloods? What if it… what if it hurts Draco?”
But something had.
And now he didn’t know what to do.
He had almost thrown it in the fire a while ago, after Crabbe and Goyle had asked him yet again if he was the Heir of Slytherin and he had confirmed, yet again, that no he wasn’t but he certainly agreed with what he was doing.
Of course he agreed with it.
Purity will always conquer.
And what was a Mudblood if not the polar opposite of everything pure?
The memory of a laugh rang in his ears. The image of a self-satisfied smirk after she finished drawling some spiel memorised straight from a textbook they weren’t supposed to have read until 6th year. A gown billowing in the wind as she ran back to the castle from the hut of that giant oaf- her hair a messy, dark halo flying behind her.
She really was such a creature.
Wild and uninhibited and untamed.
Draco picked up his clock: ornate burnished silver with serpents as the hands, and set his alarm to 6am.
The library opened at 6:30.
He had made his decision.
Hermione wished she had brought her robes with her.
The library itself was always deliciously warm so she had opted for just a pair of jeans and a thin navy jumper, but she had neglected to factor in how freezing cold the rest of the castle was this early in the morning. She shivered and picked up the pace as she hurried towards the library.
She loved the library at this time. It was completely empty and silent and hers and so she always indulged herself for the first half hour by walking around and taking in a new section of it.
Just wandering around, losing herself in the possibilities.
Hermione never understood how anybody could not love to read. So much knowledge and so many stories begging to be shared. Hermione consumed books. Just as her muscles needed food for fuel, her brain needed books.
She was just about to turn the corner to the library when the hairs on the back of her neck prickled to attention.
It wasn’t because of the cold.
Something was different.
Something was wrong.
She paused and reached for her wand, her fingers curling around the thin wood. It still blew her away sometimes that what to her Muggle parents was little more than a fancy twig, to her was an object of such immense power.
Squaring her shoulders and holding the wand out in front of her, she turned the corner and ground to a complete halt.
What was he doing here?
He was leaning back against the wall opposite the doors to the library, head slightly bowed and eyes closed. His arms were folded across his chest and his silver-blonde hair was disheveled in the manner of somebody who had jumped out of bed and realised he needed to be somewhere 30 minutes away, 10 minutes ago.
Hermione briefly debated turning around and fleeing, but something made Draco Malfoy stiffen and then his eyes flashed open, meeting Hermione’s and freezing her in place.
He straightened and reached into his pocket for something. Hermione instantly shifted to a duelling stance, causing Malfoy to smirk. “I’m not here to duel you, Granger. And let me assure you, if I were then you would already be on the ground.”
“Of course.” She spat at him, “It’s hard to duel successfully against a cheater.”
Malfoy had been walking towards her and now he was so close the tip of her wand was almost touching him. Just above his heart.
“Granger,” his voice was so soft that it sent goosebumps down her spine, “I’m going to warn you now. If you’re ever duelling somebody seriously, somebody who really wants to kill you…” he paused, the tension between them causing Hermione’s stomach to flip and her heart to start racing. “If you want to live, Granger. Cheat.”
Clearly despite not having time to run a brush through his hair, he’d had time to run one over his teeth. Draco’s breath smelt like peppermint and this mingled with a subtle, intoxicating scent she couldn’t quite place. A scent that she recognised as being uniquely him.
“No one asked your opinion, you filthy Mudblood.”
And just like that, the spell was broken. She stepped away, reeling at the memory and raised her wand, pointing it directly at his throat.
“What are you doing here, Malfoy?”
“I want to give you something.”
“I want to give you something too,” she grimaced, “a permanent black eye.”
Malfoy smirked again.
It really was horribly unfair for somebody as insufferable as Draco Malfoy to be so good looking. Surely puberty should be punishing an odious toad like him with a mountain range of spots and greasy hair and a cracking voice.
But no, the Poster Boy for Evil and All Things Maleficent really was just that. A poster boy. A boy attractive enough to be put on posters.
“Now, now, Granger. And just when I was about to give you something you’ll love.”
“I highly doubt it’d be possible for me to love anything that you give me.”
“While usually that would be true, and of course I would love to give you some dreadful cursed object that will turn you into a ferret of some sort some day soon, that’s actually not what I’m here for today. Would you mind lowering your wand, it’s incredibly rude you know?”
Hermione smirked and lowered the wand… pointing it directly at his crotch.
Malfoy couldn’t hold back a genuine snort of laughter. “You are a feisty one, aren’t you Granger? Okay fine, look. I’ll just leave it on the ground here and you can pick it up once I’m gone, okay?”
“How do I know it’s not cursed?”
Malfoy raised an eyebrow. “I guess you don’t. You know, I really don’t like you Granger.”
Hermione scoffed. “I can categorically say I dislike you even more, Malfoy.”
“But it’s not because of your parentage.” He continued as though she hadn’t spoken. “I mean, you really can’t help that.”
“What?” Hermione’s wand almost fell out of her hand.
Malfoy shrugged. “I’m only telling you this because you won’t tell anybody because let’s be honest, who would believe you if you did? Blood status doesn’t really mean anything to me. You didn’t choose your parents any more than I chose mine. But I am loyal to them, I do agree that I’m better than most people because I’m a Malfoy and because I am a Pureblood and I will do what they ask of me and behave as they expect me to… within reason.”
“I- Are you trying to trick me? Do you need to see Madame Pomfrey? Do wizards even have psychiatrists? I think you’ve gone completely insane. Everything you’re saying is contradicting itself.”
“I don’t see why I have to explain myself to a stupid little Mudblood.” Malfoy snapped.
Hermione just sighed, as though Malfoy had made her point better than she ever could have.
“Granger, I was raised to believe that you and your kind are inferior, and that I should treat you as such. That doesn’t mean you actually are.”
“Malfoy… Shut up.” Hermione was done with this conversation. Done with giving this ignorant moron a platform to voice his incomprehensible opinions.
Malfoy didn’t say anything. He simply placed a crumpled and folded piece of paper on the ground and on top of it, a small silver mirror.
Hermione didn’t say anything either, didn’t move, her wand once again pointing directly at Draco’s chest. “Granger-“
Malfoy nodded and turned around. He was just about to turn the corner and disappear out of sight when he seemed to remember something and turned around, calling back to her “Calm down, Granger. I didn’t rip it out of a library book.”
Hermione waited until she was sure he was gone and her heart had settled back to a normal pace and rhythm before putting away her wand and picking up what he had left her.
The mirror was unextraordinary so she decided she’d look at it later. She slipped it into the front pocket of her jeans and focused on unfolding the rumpled piece of paper, roughly torn out from the pages of a book.
Her eyes went immediately to the handwriting at the bottom.
One word, underlined twice.
She was briefly startled by the similarity to her own handwriting.
Now truly confused, Hermione Granger began to read.
“For old time’s sake,” says Lucius, sitting down next to his son.
Draco rolls his eyes, “Really father, I don’t think-“
“Too old for such foolishness, or scared of losing?” Lucius asks him.
“Please. You’ve never played Quidditch in your entire life.”
“Ah,” says Lucius, stretching out his legs, “I haven’t. But your mother has. She was very good too.”
“I’m not going to play Quidditch with mum.”
“No. I suppose not. But you might, at the very least, pretend to be happy, for her sake.”
Draco’s earliest memory of Christmas involves him running out on to the lawn, his new broom in his hand (and a trail of paper-wrapping in his wake), demanding that they all come and play Quidditch with him.
It’s the first time he sees his father smile genuinely, before settling comfortably on the sidelines while his wife takes up the rather more arduous task of refereeing the match being played between Draco and the house elves.
Not, to say, that Lucius is any less enthusiastic from the sidelines and about halfway through the match he and Narcissa end up arguing over whether Draco has committed a foul or not when he momentarily latches on to the handle of one of the house elves’ brooms and Draco laughs until he has a coughing fit at the sight of his father and mother trading insults aimed at each other and their mothers and their families.
Of course, once Draco starts coughing they abandon their fight and rush to his side and the rest of the memory is now very hazy, but Draco remembers that. Lucius’ cool reserve all gone in a moment and his mother making impassioned defenses over the artistic integrity of the sport (it’s a foul Lucius, if he’s going to foul he might as well do it artistically – he’s five ‘Cissa he doesn’t know how to foul artistically – well he’s your son you ought to teach him).
One of the few rare times he has ever seen them both lose their cool and composed exteriors in the name of good fun.
The next most significant Christmas is his ninth one, because they give him a practice wand and he spends the whole day attempting to do spells and ending up blowing up some priceless artefacts.
Draco doesn’t notice the way Lucius winces every time a priceless vase smashes to pieces, only that his father praises him for being so clever and talented and skilled and the very best.
It’s Christmas, he’s happy, his mother and father are happy and he has a wand and magic and that’s all that matters at nine.
Draco knows that it is as much of an effort for his father and mother as it is for him, to be cheerful these days.
It is more than just the ominous presence of his aunt hanging over their heads.
Perhaps it is the knowledge that for the first he knows that they both know that he is going to fail at what he has been appointed to do and worse still, that they are preparing to receive the worst of the punishment that will surely follow after he fails. Maybe it is the knowledge that all the years that have gone before have been nothing more than mere illusions. Pleasant ones, but illusions nonetheless.
“We have always been a happy family,” says Lucius, presently, “Perhaps not the warmest of families, but both Narcissa and I have given you what we never received as children.”
“You raised me to follow in your footsteps,” says Draco with some asperity, “Forgive me if I can’t bring myself to believe you, but if you had wanted me to be my own man, you’d have raised me the same way Charles Nott raised Theo.”
Lucius sighs, “We tried, as best we could, to look to the future and predict it in all its nuances. We failed-”
Draco’s head snaps up at that. For his father to admit failure, that is no small thing.
“But,” continues Lucius, “You have the blood of the Blacks and the Malfoys in you and I have no doubt that you will manage as we have always managed.”
“I am not blind, Father. I know –“
Lucius rises, “Draco, my son, whatever happens, we do not wear our hearts on our sleeves,” he places his wand under his son’s chin and tilts it up, “We keep our chins up, cut our losses and carry on. And for your mother’s sake, this Christmas, you will be happy.”
Draco bows his head in assent and is nearly out of the room when he hears the words –
“Merry Christmas, Draco,” Lucius comes alongside him and places something in Draco’s hand.
He opens his hand later, much later and looks at the signet ring in his hand, with the Runsepoors entwined around a sword and their family motto on it.
Sanctimonia Vincet Semper.
In 1998, Draco and Narcissa sit down to eat dinner at Christmas, all alone in rented rooms in Paris and Draco forces himself to smile and entertain his mother, laughing along with her as she methodically dissects Parisian society and skewers it. Cheap and gaudy, like their chateaus with their plaster of paris ceilings and gilded columns.
And over the dinner, it becomes easier. As easy as it will ever be to remember that there are now only the two of them to share their Christmases.
“Chin up, Draco,” says Narcissa, when they’re strolling along the Seine later, “Or you’ll curve your spine.”
He straightens his back and tilts his chin upwards although he knows, just as well as she does, that her words have deeper meaning.
“Merry Christmas, Draco,” she says later, giving him his present.
This is the third present he treasures the most. His father’s pocket watch, now his own. Compared to a broom, or indeed, his first wand, it seems so very trifling, but this is as precious a memory as the times he has seen his mother and father laughing unreservedly – only ever on Christmas – or his father praising him unreservedly (praise offered only rarely after that first day) or indeed, his father passing on his signet ring to him.
“It suits you,” says Narcissa and Draco smiles. Genuinely, this time.
“Merry Christmas, mother,” he says, lightly squeezing her hand.