*Chapter Image credit Anthea@TDA*
February 18th, 1983
Narcissa sat in the living room on the dark green sofa, across from Lucius, who was sitting in a chair and reading a book. Narcissa had just put Lyra to sleep, and Draco was playing in his room upstairs. Narcissa drummed her fingers across the arm of the sofa, anxious and bored. She glanced up at the clock. It was 7:30pm, and the minister of magic was expected to arrive at 8 with a four month old baby girl who would soon be living in Malfoy Manor. This girl also happened to be her oldest sister, Bellatrix's daughter.
Narcissa still couldn't believe that her sister had given birth to a child. Bellatrix had never been the most compassionate or maternal woman ever. She never showed any desire to become a mother, and yet on October 9th, 1982 Bellatrix became a parent. After her daughter was born, she was named Ashlynn Carina Lestrange. She was immediately taken away from Bellatrix and taken to St. Mungo's hospital to be cleaned and checked out. People from the ministry had the issue of deciding who would take care of Ashlynn, since Bellatrix couldn't raise her in Azkaban. It was decided a week later that Ashlynn would live with Bellatrix's closest relatives. Narcissa was thankful that the ministry didn't choose Ashlynn to live with her blood traitor sister, Andromeda and her mudblood husband.
Narcissa and Lucius had attended appointments and meetings at the ministry to discuss the issue, and once it was confirmed, they had to wait 3 more months before Ashlynn could be taken to live with the Malfoys, since it took a while to get all the necessary documents prepared.
There was a light knock on the front door, making Lucius set down his book and rise from the chair. They both left the room together and made their way down the hallway to the door. Their house elf, Dobby, opened the front door and bowed towards his master before scurrying away.
"Ah, Lucius...Narcissa." A short blonde woman said clearly from the doorway, nodding towards the person as she said each name.
"Millicent Bagnold," Lucius said, shaking the minister's hand, Narcissa doing the same. "Would you like to come in?"
Millicent put her hand up. "Oh no thank you. I mustn't stay long tonight. A few issues have arrived at the ministry that I must deal with. Luckily, everything is ready and it won't take more than a few minutes to do."
"So where is Ashlynn?" Narcissa asked curiously. Neither she nor Lucius were allowed to see Ashlynn, and she was curious about what she looked like.
"She will be arriving in a minute with Cornelius Fudge," Millicent said. "Now, I hope that you both remember everything we've discussed in our previous meetings?"
"Yes, we remember," Lucius said.
A loud crack from outside startled Narcissa. She stared past the minister and saw the faint outline of a body in the dark.
"Oh good, here's Cornelius now," Millicent said.
As Cornelius Fudge made stepped into the light emitting from inside the manor, Narcissa saw a small bundle wrapped in a black blanket.
Millicent motioned Fudge to give the baby to Narcissa. Fudge pulled the baby away from himself and handed Ashlynn over to Narcissa, and she adjusted the child carefully in her arms. Narcissa looked down into Ashlynn's face and saw that she was awake. Narcissa was amazed to see that Ashlynn looked so similar to Bellatrix, besides her eyes which were green like her father, Rodolphus Lestrange. Narcissa looked up and saw Lucius looking at the baby over her shoulder.
Millicent glanced down at her watch, her eyes widening in shock. "Oh dear, I must be going now. Well, I wish you luck. I know it must be hard to raise 3 young children, but I believe you will both be fine," Millicent said.
"Goodbye," Narcissa said, watching as Millicent and Cornelius walked away from the manor, turned and apparated on the spot with two loud cracks.
Lucius closed the door and kissed his wife on the forehead. Narcissa was the only one who saw the gentle side of him, and for that she was happy.
"I'd better put her in her crib," Narcissa said. They had set up a room next door to Lyra's, complete with all that a child could have.
"I'll come with you. It's time to put Draco to bed anyway," Lucius said.
They walked up the grand staircase and opened Draco's door. They saw their son sitting on the ground and playing with his many toys, which were strewn all over the ground. He looked up and smiled when he saw his parents. "Mommy! Daddy!" He cried and got up as quickly as a one and a half year old could. He walked over to his parents and hugged Narcissa's legs.
"Draco, this is Ashlynn. She is your cousin and she will be living with us," Lucius said.
Narcissa crouched over so Draco could see the baby in her arms. Draco stared at his cousin for a minute and then yawned. "Can you put him to bed?" Narcissa asked. "I'll put Ashlynn in bed."
Lucius nodded and Narcissa turned to head towards Ashlynn's room. Narcissa walked in and set her in the crib. The room was very similar to Lyra's, except it was a tiny bit smaller, and the color theme of the room was blue instead of pink.
Narcissa turned off the light and silently shut the door. She was nervous about raising a child that wasn't her own, but she knew she had to do it for Bellatrix. She was her sister, she owed her that much. And Lucius would be excited at raising another pureblood child. At least it wasn't some mutant spawn like Andromeda had produced. Narcissa still grimaced at the fact Andromeda had named her daughter something as foolish and disgusting as Nymphadora. Narcissa shook the thoughts from her mind and went nextdoor to check on Lyra. Lyra was breathing quietly in her crib, fast asleep. Narcissa felt reassured, knowing her daughter, son, and niece were safe. Narcissa twirled her wedding ring absent mindedly on her hand as she gazed at her daughter and whispered, "Toujours Pur."
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