Chapter 5 : Chapter 5: Draco
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As she sat across from me at the table I was trying to read her, trying to figure out her secret. Was it something horrid? Or was it something she was sure I would hate her for? What could Hermione Granger of all people have to hide? The only secret she had actually ever kept from me- the fact that we had a child- had long since come out, so what did she fear?
But Hermione wasn’t watching me. Her eyes were fixed intently on Potter. Potter who hadn’t said so much as a word since his arse sat down at the table. Potter who was pushing his food around on his plate rather than actually eat it. Potter who had been the bane of my existence since our first day at Hogwarts, and yet who I couldn’t help but suddenly feel rather sorry for.
I had imagined how I would feel if I were in Potter’s place, if Hermione were in Ginny’s. Wouldn’t I seem unwilling to grant anyone human contact? Wouldn’t I, too, wish to be left alone to wait and worry about her? Of course I would. Somehow Hermione had managed to become the most important thing in my life, and despite myself I couldn’t find a way around it.
I contemplated many times why she was so vastly important to me. Surely I could have had practically any pureblood witch I had wanted, but yet this muggle born had been the one to capture my heart- much to the disappointment of most of the people I knew. So, the question remained: what made her so bloody special? Was it the sound of her voice? Was it her cleverness, the way her cheeks would flush when she was angry? Was it her smell or the texture of the skin on the back of her neck? Or maybe it had been a combination of it all that had led to my infatuation with the muggle born witch I had found to be a thorn in my side for years merely due to her association with Potter.
Right now Hermione was worried for her friend, and that didn’t surprise me in the slightest. She had always been rather protective of Potter and Weasley, watching over their every move as if that alone would keep them safe. And with the way Potter was acting, I was pretty sure she was waiting for some great emotional breakdown. Though that thought was rather amusing, with everything else happening right now, I didn’t need Hermione to become even more worried about Potter.
Then Danica’s face filled my mind, so innocent and sweet. What horrors was my father inflicting upon her? Was she crying for us, like Hermione had dreamt? Was she afraid and hurt, wondering why it was taking us so long to find her? Would we be able to find her before my father destroyed her entirely? I shuddered at the thought of what my father could mold her into were he given the time. Shuddered at the thought of what he may be doing to her, what he may be making her watch. And when we did get her back, who could guarantee that what my father did wouldn’t damage her?
A part of me wanted to go back to try to find out what Pansy really knew about all this. It was entirely possible that she was hiding stuff from us, biding time so that it would be too late for us to find Danica. But was she really smart enough to keep such secrets? Would my father actually have trusted her with information that could be used against him or to help us find our daughter? Surely my father was smarter than that.
One of the Weasley twins was trying to get Potter to say something, but no words would come out of his mouth. He would merely nod or shake his head when he chose to respond at all. I longed for the Potter I fought with. At least then Hermione wouldn’t be worrying about him and we could both be focused entirely on finding our daughter before something horrible happened to her.
I had spent all this time not knowing about her and as soon as I was in her life she was taken away. There was no justice left in the world, I decided, if the time I could have had with my daughter was suddenly cut short by my father of all people. My father, the man I grew up both fearing and loathing. My father, the man I was sure I myself killed. The man I couldn’t seem to escape no matter what I did. Lucius Malfoy: pureblood and Death Eater extraordinaire.
Hermione stood up from her face looking so very tired. She excused herself quietly, then slunk up the stairs like she was afraid to disturb someone. I stood up as well, following her steps with equally quiet ones, following her into the room we had been using.
She laid on the bed, curled up, arms around herself. Her shoulders shook with unshed tears, restraining herself from releasing that anguish inside of her. I slid onto the bed behind her, slipping my arms around her and pulling her against my chest. I wanted to wrap her up in warmth and comfort. I wanted her to know I was there for her, would always be. “Everything will be fine, love,” I whispered to her, face buried in her dark hair. “I promise it will all be fine.”
Her body shook harder, then I felt the warmth of her tear on my arms. She gripped my arm tightly between her hands as if she was afraid I would vanish, that I would abandon her or be taken away. Her nails dug into my skin, sure to leave angry indentations, but it didn’t bother me. As long as she knew she was safe and loved, I could handle a little bit of pain.
“I’m scared,” she whispered.
“What are you scared of, love?”
“That we’ll never find Danica, that Ginny will never wake up. I don’t think I could handle losing them, Draco.”
“You won’t have to,” I assured her. “They’ll figure out how to wake up Ginny and we’ll find Danica. I’m not going to give up until we have her back. Father won’t win in this, alright?”
“We don’t have any clues to go on, Draco. And I can almost feel him hurting her. I can feel it, Draco.”
The tears came down harder, and all I could do is tighten my arms around her, press a kiss on top of her head and let her body shake with tears, let her release all the anguish inside of her.
I wondered if she could tell I was crying, too. Crying for her pain, crying for mine. And crying for the daughter we both wanted back so desperately.
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