Some months later The first semester was coming to an end. Everyone would go home for Christmas. Not knowing what waited for me back there I wasn’t really that excited. I had been the first one out of our Defense against the Black Arts Advance Course final. So I was sitting against a wall in one of the corridors. Hermoine soon followed me. “So what are your plans for Christmas?” She asked. “I don’t know. Hannah sent me a letter inviting me home.” I said sarcastically, and continued “Seems that her boyfriend, fiancé, whatever has moved into my parents’ home with her. She says and I quote ‘the only one missing is you’. I honestly don’t like her.” “Who don’t you like?” Draco asked as he made his way towards us. “Hannah”, I responded as he sat down next to me. “How was it?” he raised his brow and I added, “The test.” He rested his arm on my shoulder and pulled me closer, “I survived. What about you two?” “Ok” I said with a half smile. “I’m still worried about the Potions one.” Hermoine then said, “You probably aced it. You two have been locked up studying for that exam, every weekend, since October. I on the other hand am a bit worried about this test.” I rolled my eyes at her, “Come on Hermy, you probably aced it! Now, if we had been studying all that time, then maybe I’d be a little bit more at ease now.” Hermoine looked from me to Draco and back, “One of these days you two are going to get caught.” For the past months and after a lot of work, Hermoine had started to get along with Draco. Draco smirked, “Not if I can help it.” Ron had come out from the test a few seconds ago and had heard Hermoine’s remark. “If I remember correctly I saved your face, last time you two sneaked out. And somebody forgot to place his disguise spell. If Pansy had caught you two…” Draco whistle, “Nasty thought Ron.” Ron had found out about Draco at the Hallowen Ball. Draco and I had decided to sneak back to Gryffindor and were making out in the common room. Draco had said the spell, but we had both forgotten completely about it when Ron arrived. Ron started making fun of us, all he could see was me on top of Draco. And when I pulled back it was Draco he saw. At the moment it didn’t register. Ron started punching Draco, I started screaming and Hermoine jumped in to stop him and explain everything. After a couple of weeks and what Draco told me were about two heart to heart with Ron they had finally reached amicable terms. By now they were joking as always. Even a couple of times, when we had sneaked up to one of the towers at Gryffindor, Draco had let down the disguise around them. “So, going back to Christmas plans.” Hermoine said. I shrugged, “Still undecided.” Draco rolled his eyes, “Can’t very well go home.” I looked over at him, “Can you get out from here?” Draco nodded, “As long as I wear my disguise, it should be ok.” I smiled at him, “Then, why don’t you come home with me? I know that it’s a little bit too close to home, but… beats staying here. And we can stay there for a couple of days, come back to Hogwarts early.” He was considering it, “I’ll think about it.” He then got up and pulled me with him. “So what are you two up to for Christmas?” He asked Ron and Hermoine, “Family stuff.” They both answered. *** I was packing some of my clothes, I’d decided to stay only until the first. Then I was coming back, it would be ten days. Not a single one more. “I’ve got an idea. I already checked with mom and she said it would be great. Why don’t you two spend New Year’s with me and my family?” Ginny asked. “Hermoine is already coming and well… you two would be missing and all…” I smiled at her and said, “I’d love to! Still, I don’t know what Draco’s doing.” At that moment a male voice said, “I’m in!” He took of his cloak and smiled at the both of us. I looked at him, “You can get in sooo much trouble if McGonagall finds you here.” He nodded, “That’s why I’ll be quick. I’m coming home with you, I already talked to McGonagall and she explained that it would be safe, also she added that she’d feel better if you didn’t go back by yourself. I’ll see you in a few.” He then pulled his cloak back on and left. Ginny smiled, “He’s really changed.” I nodded, “A lot.” “I’m glad for you!” Ginny gave me a hug and said good bye. We would see her in a week. I finished packing my bag and got Juancho in his cage. Then I pulled my wand and sent everything to the Rover. I walked to the common where Draco was already waiting. “You set?” He asked. I nodded and he held out his hand. “What?” I asked “Keys. I’m driving.” He answered. I was about to argue with him but it was a long drive and I had Hannah to face at the end of it, so I gladly handed them over to him. *** We arrived at Wiltshire near midnight. Lillie and Maurice were waiting up for us. “Hello Miss! We’re so glad you’re back.” Lillie said. I smiled at her, “Hello Lillie! Maurice! I’d like you both to meet my boyfriend, Chris.” I then turned to Draco and said, “These are Lillie and Maurice. They’re like family to me.” Turning back to Lillie and Maurice I asked, “Where’s Hannah?” Maurice was the one to answer, “Oh, she and her fiance, Mr. Clark, went to London this evening. They said not to wait up.” Maurice then asked, “Where are your things?” I smiled, “Already in my room.” Maurice looked at me questioningly, “Don’t worry, Hannah isn’t here and Chris here knows.” Maurice relaxed and then tensed again, “And where is Chris sleeping?” I looked over at Draco, that, we hadn’t talked about. “With me?” I said. Draco nodded and smiled. Maurice looked at me and sighed, “Oh well! You know the way. Is there anything you two might need?” I shook my head, “No. Thanks Maurice, Lillie. Good night!” With that we started up the stairs. I stopped in front of my room and turned to Draco. “You sure?” Draco smiled, “I should be the one asking you.” I smiled, “I’m sure, otherwise I wouldn’t have mentioned it.” I then opened my door and we both walked in. Draco closed it behind him. The light was on and our bags were already here. I took out my pj’s and walked to the bathroom. “I need a shower.” About half an hour later, I walked out of the shower to find the lights out and Draco, no disguise spell whatsoever, was sitting by the window. Making my way to him I sat beside him. He was staring at his home. “You miss them. Don’t you?” He nodded. “They’re still my parents.” He then pointed to a window, “You see the second floor, fourth window from left to right?” I nodded, “That’s my room. Did you know that when we were kids I would sit there and watch you play with your doll house?” I smiled at him and nodded, “I know. Why did you think that your drapes kept falling on you?” He then turned around smiling and kissed me. I kissed him back. Then I stood up and reached out to him. He came with me to bed. Nothing happened that night, he held me safe and we slept. The next morning I got up and heard the water running. Getting out from bed I made my way to the bathroom. Opening the door I said, “Morning.” His head popped out from behind the curtain. “Hey, sleepy head! Care to join me?” I tilted my head and asked, “You daring me?” He winked and closed the curtain. I took of my pj’s and stepped in. Draco jumped and turned around, he then stared, openly gaped. I had never felt squeamish about my body, but at that moment I did. I was about to head back out, regretting my decision, when he pulled me to him. “You know, you’re beautiful.” He said as he started kissing me and I kissed him back. He then moved to my neck and things got more heated. There was a knock on the door. Shit! I hadn’t closed it. “Bella? You in here?” I looked at Draco and rolled my eyes, “Yes Hannah! What is it?” I heard her voice coming closer and opened my eyes at Draco, he wasn’t wearing his disguise and he couldn’t say the spell now. Hannah would hear him. Shit! “Bella, I’m heading out to town, get some last minute presents and all. Would you and your boyfriend like to come?” Draco shook his head and mouthed ‘No shopping’ So I just said, “Thanks Hannah, but we were thinking of getting the tree and decorating it.” Hannah was already heading out the door, “Marvelous idea. I’ll see you later then.” I sighed and leaned into Draco’s chest. “Close call.” He simply nodded and then said the spell, changing back to Chris. *** We had been looking for the perfect tree for hours. Not wanting to bump into any Malfoy we thought it safe to head out into the muggle world. But, after two hours this Malfoy was starting to have to look out for a Townsend. “What is wrong with this one?” I asked for what seemed like the hundredth time. “It doesn’t have the right shape.” Darco said. I looked at him begging, no imploring him to pick one. But, still he wouldn’t. The last six lots had been the same, ‘not the right shape’, ‘not enough foilage’, ‘I want one taller’, ‘that’s not the right shade of green’. He was starting to get on my nerves. If it wasn’t because I knew that this was the first time he was picking a tree, and he was really excited about it, I honestly would have taken the keys and driven off. After he dismissed a couple more tree, he decided it was time to head somewhere else. He pulled near a mini mall. They had a couple of tree vendors, so who knows maybe he’d pick one. As I got out of the car, I noticed a particular store that might get him to hurry. So, I told him that I need to get some things from the pharmacy and instead made my way to Anne’s Secret Closet. After choosing something that I liked classic, yet a little bit sluttish, I headed back to Draco who was already getting in the car with no tree at all. I opened the passenger side and got in. He was about to pull out when I gave him the bag. “What’s this?” He asked. I smiled at him sweetly, “That is your Christmas present Draco. You can either open it today, Christmas Day or keep on looking for trees and, at the speed we are going, maybe open it next week.” He opened the bag and examined it’s contents. He then looked at me and said, “I think I saw one here.” He got out of the Rover and fifteen minutes later we were heading back to Wiltshire with a tree. *** Once at Wiltshire, not wanting anyone to notice us using magic, we had to carry the tree inside. We placed it in the entrance rotunda; that was where my mother used to like it. And then we both set out to do something that we had never done, decorate the tree. It took us a couple of long minutes to figure out the whole deal with the lights and all. At one point Maurice walked by and started laughing at us, we had more goo on us than the tree had ornaments. But, we were not going to use magic. Lillie, then took pity on us and started to help. In a couple of hours the tree was done and we were heading to the shower. About two or three hours later Hannah and her fiancé arrived. We were about to sit down and watch some old Christmas movies, when Hannah mentioned that she had bought tickets to the Country Club’s Christmas Dinner, we had no other option, but to go. Some of my father’s friends wanted to see me, and well I wouldn’t mind seeing some of them. So we made our way back upstairs. I started looking through my closet and found a blue satin dress that I had never worn. I pulled it out and tried it on, it still fit. When I turned around I noticed that Draco was already dressed. “Where did you get that suit?” He shrugged, “There was no one home, so I sneaked in.” I looked at him, “You could’ve been caught!” He smiled, “Bella, I lived in that house since I was born. I think I can get around without getting caught.” “You sure no one saw you?” I pressed and he nodded, “Yes, I’m sure.” I looked at him and had to smile. He wasn’t wearing his disguise and looked so handsome. I walked over to him and kissed him. Then I turned and went to change. About an hour later we were all ready and getting into the limo. We started to pull out of the drive way and suddenly the limo turned to the other side. I pointed it out to Hannah, and she simply smiled and said. “Oh, I forgot to mention it to you, but our neighbor is joining us.” I felt Draco tense as we pulled into his parents’ driveway. A blonde woman all dressed elegantly all in black walked out to the limo. Draco’s hand was freezing. I squeezed it for reassurance, after all McGonagall had told him it was safe. She opened the door on the opposite side of where we sat, and smiled courteously at everyone, “Good evening!” She then got in the limo and sat in front of me. Draco pretended to be playing with my coat. She then said to Hannah, “Thank you, so much for inviting me. Having to spend Christmas alone, is always a little sad.” Hannah then said, “Oh, were are my manners! Narcissa, this is Isabella, Robert and Denise’s daughter. And her boyfriend, Christopher.” Draco looked up and we both smiled at her. Narcissa smiled back, “A pleasure. Isabella, I knew your parents, they were really kind people.” I nodded in response. Well, as if she would know. I never recall seeing her, when I was a kid. Hannah then asked, “You have a son. Right?” Narcissa nodded. What the hell was going on? Had this all been set up. I could feel Draco reaching new heights of tension beside me. He was once again playing with my coat. Forgetting every thing I knew about decorum and how one should behave in public I leaned towards him and rested my body against him. “He’s about your age.” Narcissa said to us. “He’s an excellent student, has made the top of his class, since his first year. He’s a great seeker. Still, I’m his mother, every mother believes her son to be perfect.” I had to change the subject, or Draco here would blow his cover. “Did they pick a theme for this year’s Christmas Dinner?” Hannah got all excited, “Oh, yes we did. Narcissa, why don’t you tell them? After all, it was your idea.” Narcissa and Hannah then started talking about the decorations and the arrangements that had been made. Draco, started to relax a bit beside me. When we got to the Country Club I was about ready to believe that, Narcissa and Hannah had become fast friends. Draco was the first one out of the car, and I followed him. We stayed behind so that we could talk. “You ok?” I had to ask. He nodded, “I’d like to think that my mother isn’t up to something. But, I’ve never seen her be so friendly with a muggle.” I stopped and looked at him, “I feel like I’m in a weird Twilight Zone episode,” He tried to smile, but didn’t quite manage. “Tell me about it.” We then went into the ball room. Narcissa and Hannah hadn’t exaggerated it was beautifully decorated. It looked like if it had snowed inside, there was white powder everywhere. Trees had been set to look as if everything had been set outside. A fake pond had been frozen and some kids were trying to get in it. Draco looked around, searching for our table. When he saw them seated he started walking towards them, but I stopped him. A song had just come on, it was my mother’s favorite and one that I used to dance with my father. Smile though your heart is aching Smile even thought it’s breaking When there are clouds in the sky you’ll get by If you smile through your fear and sorrow Smile and maybe tomorrow, you’ll see the sun come shinning through for you I looked at the people dancing, “Would you like to dance?” I asked. He smiled and pulled me to the dance floor. When we reached it he amazed me, he really did know how to dance. He held me close as we turned, and for the first time in a really long time I felt completely happy. Light up your face with gladness Hide every trace of sadness Although a tear, maybe ever so near That’s the time, you must keep on trying Smile, what’s the use of crying You’ll find that life, is still worth while, if you just smile. He looked at me, “Thanks. I really didn’t feel like going back there.” The song was drawing to an end, so I kissed him gently, “I should be the one thanking you…” That’s the time you must keep on trying Smile what’s the use of crying. You’ll find that life, is still worth while, if you just smile. He raised his brow and I explained. “Ever since my mother’s death, my dad would dance this song with me. I think he did it to remember her by it. If you hadn’t been here this would’ve been the first time in ten years that I would sit it out.” He then hugged me real tight, “Then I’m really glad my mother made me take those dancing lessons.” He looked towards the table, “Speaking of whom, we better join them. They’re serving dinner.” We made our way there and when we reached them I noticed that some friends of my father were also at our table. I greeted everyone and introduced Draco, as Christopher to them. Draco and I started talking with Harold Drogin. I knew him to be a famous herbologist in the wizard world, and he taught Botanic’s 101 at Oxford. “So what are you two planning on doing after this, your last, year?” Draco shrugged, knowing that the others weren’t listening he spoke freely, “Still undecided. Maybe, start working somewhere in the Ministry and then go back and do something with potions.” Harold then turned towards me, “Honestly, I still don’t know. I’ve excelled in the Defense Against the Black Arts, and I used to be really good with Summoning so, maybe one of those two and head to the Ministry.” Harold smiled, “You have definitely taken after your Isabella; not only in looks, but in Academics as well.” I never knew that about my mother, I thought her field had been herbology, like Harold. We went on talking with him about different things. Draco seemed really at ease with him, and for a time there I think he even forgot that his mother was there. Well, all up to the point when she started trying to talk to us too. I saw that Draco was tensing up, and so I started to complain about a stomach ache. “Hannah, I think we’ll call a cab. I’m not feeling so good.” Hannah turned and nodded in acknowledgment. She then turned back to talk with Narcissa about the New Year’s Ball. Draco and I headed home. *** When we arrived at Wiltshire it was the first thing we noticed. It was looming over my house; the Death Eater’s mark. We got out of the taxi and I dashed inside, whoever it was, it was still in the house. I could feel it, cold and merciless. I started walking towards it, I passed the dinning room and went into the kitchen. It was really near, I then felt someone grab my hand. I nearly screamed. It was Draco, he handed me my wand, and gave me a ‘are you crazy look’. I ignored it and pushed the door open, the light was off. “Lumos” . I started walking through the pantry. It was empty, but I could still feel it. The lights came on. I turned and noticed that Draco stood by the switch. I smiled at him. And suddenly, I saw him point his wand at me … *** Ok, the song is Nat King Cole's Smile. It's been one of my favorites since I was a little kid... so I couldn't help it. :) Hope you still like the story! And yes feedback woud be GREAT!!!! Update soon to come!!!! PS This is the last chapter I've written so far... so any ideas would be great. Oh and before I forget, Harry returns to Hogwarts for the second semester. Any ideas????
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