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It was never over for them. The Dark Lord’s memory would never fade away. The mere fact that they had shown signals of dark activity all over Europe was a good start, a considerably good start. Wizardry and muggles never mixed.

Just like someone he knew. Once knew actually. It was all over the place. Or better yet, all over the wizard societal gossips. Little snippets of who was dating whom. Seen in muggle London, cuddling up to each other in muggle public. That sort of stuff. That sort of publicity that gave pureblooded wizards a bad name.

Fucking young Malfoy.

He was never really like his father. Fanatical to the point that he sold his own soul to actually prove that he was forever loyal to the Dark Lord. Now; that older Malfoy was some worthy stock, worthy blood, worth every drop of magical pure-blood that ran in his veins, the man thought as he twirled his aged-looking wand. It was barely a twenty something year old wand.

His son however, was a little bit on the tarnished side. Perhaps the exposure to Dumbledore and all those other nasty influences finally got to him. Why, the young Malfoy had actually fought alongside Harry Potter himself! The Great Harry Potter, who was now dead….thank heavens, or rather, thank hell for that!

And he sat down and watched the roaring flames dancing in the hearth, thinking and thinking of what was about to come, what was about to be done in order to get there, to resurface, to make it known that this was where the common wizarding and muggle populace were to step back, so that they could claim what was theirs. A glory to the memory of the Dark Lord.

He lived forever. The Dark Lord lived forever.

He felt the thrill of it, imagining what it was like to finally say those wonderful spells again, and those curses. Cruciatus. Imperio. Avada Kedavra. Wonderful. Just wonderful.

He sighed and sat comfortably now, holding a glass of strong elfin ale, the special kind brewed underground and left for a few hundred years by fairies in Ireland, harvesting it in the winter season. The last time he had drunk this kind of ale was when he had been at Hogwarts, they had a rip roaring time, illegally drinking it in the confines of their bedroom dorms.

Ah Hogwarts. Hoggity Hogwarts. It seemed such a long time ago, when he had gone there, together with his ‘best buddies’. They had the best of times there and the worst as well. And his thoughts came upon Draco Malfoy again. And he wondered how Draco was, and what he was up to now. The last thing he had heard about the brat was that he was dying of some illness his mother refused to announce. A family secret. Why, if Lucius had known, he would’ve killed Draco on the spot for being so weak, for being so un-Malfoy.

He was proud of being pureblooded, proud of saying that he hated foul blooded wizards and muggle-born wizards…and witches. He smirked at the thought of it.

There was a change in the fire. He frowned. Someone was coming. Damn it. What a good way to ruin a solitary night in his manor with a visitor. The fire flickered into a lighter shade and in a second a man stepped out of the fire and entered his opulent drawing room.

He shook some ashes off of his rich, black velvet robe and smiled at the seated owner of the manor. “ Greetings, old friend. “

The man seated narrowed his eyes but responded. “ Good eve. What brings you? Take a seat, please. “

“ Thank you, “ the stranger replied, sitting across him, feeling the softness of the bearskin rug covering an ample space of the chairs underneath them. “ Nice night; isn’t it? “

The lord of the house nodded. “ Yes, “ came his short reply.

“ I can see you’re impatient to know… “

“ Not impatient, just a little distracted. I was drinking the finest elfin ale and you come in here, you prance in here like it’s the Yule Ball all over again- “

The stranger laughed. “ Yule ball? A memories! You did look quite dashing back there didn’t you? Well- so were the rest of our cohorts- “ he laughed. “ Although we weren’t the best of- “ he laughed again.

“ Spit it out, Nott. “

“ Although we weren’t the best of friends, “ he finally said with a snigger.

He huffed, seeing Theodore Nott grin. The man still made him feel wary and uncomfortable. “ Of course, you preferred to work alone, or something like that. “

“ Draco was the only one who was smart enough for me. “

“ Slytherins were smart. “

“ Ah, cunning perhaps? But for intelligence on a higher level… he was a little different you know. “

“ Malfoy respected you, “ the lord of the house spat out. “ For reasons unknown.- “

“ That is so simple, he thought I was smart too, “ Theodore Nott said with another laugh.

“ What brings you here? “ he finally asked.

“ The activities you’ve been so keen to start, I’ve heard…come to offer my services once more, “ he replied.

“ Your father was bad at it, an awful lot bad at it, “ he snapped.

The newcomer frowned. “ Ah, but that was my father now. I am entirely different. “

“ That’s what annoys me. You weren’t exactly active you know, back in the Hogwarts days. You chose to keep away from your father’s shadow for the moment. “ The lord of the house looked at him intently, watching for any uncomfortable moves and signs of spying. There was none.

“ I thought it was the smart thing to do, and I was right. “

“ You work alone, right? Without us, you never, not once; tagged along with- “

“ With you chaps? Hell, I couldn’t do that. It’d look ugly. Besides, Draco Malfoy’s cronies were lumbering idiots, not that I’m also including you in the picture. “

“ Oh shut it, Nott. “

“ Take a breather. You’ve been too serious. Too ‘evil’. “ Another laugh.

“ So what about these recent little activities we’ve been staging, of what sudden interest is it to you? “

He shrugged. “ I figured it was time, although it may be difficult, I must admit. But the memory of the Dark Lord, is as always, difficult to kill. I figured it best to serve him now, in his memory. “

“ Smart and stupid, Nott. “

“ Thank you, old chap, “ he replied.

“ Don’t you think it’s a little bit too late to join in the circle? “ Blaise said sarcastically. “ I’ve used your services, I paid you well enough, right? Paid you to walk through a muggle place, in mire, just to find something useful- “

“ You don’t want me in it, “ he said.

“ No, of course I would. Subject to the council’s approval, of course. “

“ Ah…a council now? When did this start? The time when Potter- oh alright. So silly of me. “

“ You should know, you may be a little bit unwelcome. “

“ I expect them to hex me once I enter the meeting. “

“ Good. I may be one of them. “

“ Come now, what of unity in the name of the master? “

He was quiet as he gulped some of his supposedly fine elfin ale. The ale suddenly became foul in his mouth, like Theodore Nott had been the bitter elixir to his ale. The fire looked less bright now. And he thought about it. The dark lord.

He was still living in fear, at the mere memory of Voldemort. He knew Voldemort could resurface once more; for he was full of endless possibilities. And despite seeing it, seeing the master fall, die physically in the hands of Harry Potter, he couldn’t help but feel that he was still alive somewhere, watching his servants, watching them, watching him.

He breathed deeply.

“ Tomorrow. One in the morning. Meet us, here. “

Theodore Nott nodded and stood up. “ I best get going then, nice night to you. “ Nott took care in arranging his coat once more on his shoulders and eyed him for the last time.

He nodded and stood up and watched as Nott stepped onto the open fire and disappeared.

And Blaise Zabini gulped the last of his elfin ale in silence.

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Draco woke up with the sun shining on his face. He blinked once, and sat straight up. He had nearly forgotten that he wasn’t in his room, in his new house. He was back in his old room. The room he had slept in for twenty something years. He was back at the Malfoy manor, in Wiltshire.

His eyes narrowed at the sudden glare once he had faced the window. He sighed and remembered something. His father didn’t like the idea of sunshine through their large windows. He kept most of it away by thick, velvet curtains.

But now, now was different. Even the sun was allowed now. His mother smiled now. She laughed freely now.

There was a creak in the door and in came his mother. She was wearing a sundress, a burnt pink knee length dress, and Draco almost laughed at the thought of seeing his mother in a happy color. But she looked good in it, he had to admit. It gave her face a blooming look, gone was the pinched, perpetually snobbish look. Narcissa Malfoy looked more human now, looked more like a mother, his mother.

“ I was wondering when you’d get up, “ she said sitting at the edge of his bed. “ Breakfast is ready. There’s French toast and Italian coffee, and of course the usual English muffins. “

“ Thanks, mother. “

“ Eat, alright? I’ll be waiting in the east wing, “ she said. And she bent to kiss her son’s forehead. Something she never did when her husband had still been alive. He had something against showing affection for children, afraid it would spoil them, turn them into oversensitive brats or sissies. Narcissa then stood up and walked out, closing the door softly.

Draco heaved himself off of his bed and felt the plush carpet under his feet. His room’s interiors hadn’t changed much. There were still the usual tapestries of his deceased ancestors, a family portrait, his mother’s portrait in all her finery, a portrait of their manor (done in the 1600s), and a statue of some half naked Greek goddess. There was also a fine wooden bookcase, filled with hardbound books, some antique and handwritten. It had been his favorite books since childhood. Most of which were of course about his endless fascination of the Dark Arts.

He had taken a bath and chose to wear black pants and a plain gray shirt, one of his first real muggle clothing, bought from a store, not custom made.

He walked down the grand staircase, its banisters of gold gleaming in the bright sunshine. A great chandelier made of Russian crystals hung above, unused for quite some time. His mother had not hosted a party in months, he remembered. He walked to a hallway were most of the portraits were just beginning to wake up, yawning several times, and greeting him a good morning.

“ Young Malfoy, “ one greeted. It was a blonde woman in her late forties, fanning herself with a lace handkerchief. She had been a relative of theirs by marrying into the Black family, some distant cousin-in-law of his mother’s, but still pureblooded nonetheless.

He nodded. “ Good morning, Lady Rosier. “

He arrived at the east wing, a tea room his mother usually sat in during the late afternoons. She smiled as he entered.

“ I thought you wouldn’t come, “ she said.

He smiled. “ Really, mother. “ He took a seat to her left as a fine looking ivory cup filled itself with coffee. He took a sip and smiled. “ Very nice. “

She held up a newspaper. “ Read the newspaper dear? It says here that the Aurors have been caught in another fight again, this time in Cardiff- “

Draco looked up. “ Huh? Oh, I… “ And he thought about Hermione. Did she join them for this cause? He knew she could be very stubborn when it came to battles.

“ How is he by the way? Arthur Weasley’s son? “ she asked, taking a sip of her coffee.

Draco had nearly forgotten they were also related distantly to the Weasleys. His mother hadn’t really acknowledged it until now, and he himself hadn’t. The Weasleys had been labeled as blood traitors by the few remaining purebloods a few years back for being friendly to the muggles and the muggleborn magic folk.

“ Doing good, I suppose. He’s an intractable redhead. “ Draco spread some marmalade generously over his French toast.

“ Redhead…” His mother laughed. “ Do you notice darling? No one’s a redhead in our immediate family. “

Draco smiled, imagining himself as a redhead. He’d look ridiculous, he supposed. Red just wasn’t his color anyway.

“ Darling, “ his mother began.

Draco sensed a change in her voice and his eyes slid over to her hands warily. If he had not been mistaken, they were trembling slightly. “ Mother? “

“ Do you think…your father’s…? Perhaps it’s only… but- “

“ He’s dead, mother, “ he finally said. “ You know it- those little signs are bull, so what if someone got to steal father’s effects from the Aurors? It doesn’t mean he’s alive. “

“ That’s what frightens me dear, “ she said in a low voice. “ Your father was… how shall I put this… when your father died, I felt free for the first time in years but now that all of this, even the mere mention of a cane with his initials and our family crest, it bothers me. “

Draco leaned forward and put a hand over his mother’s well manicured hand. “ Mother, please- don’t worry, you know I’m here. “

‘’ You always were. Even when you were sick dear, you fought for me, “ she said stroking her son’s cheek lovingly.

Draco felt his cheeks burn, still a little uncomfortable with Narcissa’s emotional displays. He cleared his throat and smiled. “ Could you pass the orange juice, please? “

Narcissa handed it to him and smiled.

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Author notes: dun dun dun dun!!! Theodore Nott and Blaise?!
things are going to move faster now, so i hope you've had a good grasp of the story, this is going to be a rather long story too, so...who'll stick with me! hahaha, i'm making this sound like a battle now. thanks for reading this chapter. Looking forward for your comments.

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