Search Home Read Write Forum Login Register
A/N: Oh my goodness. How long has it been since an update? Five months? Six? Regardless, I'm sooooo sorry for the long wait. Things have been hectic with a busy season at work, having to deal with my son (who's official hit his Terrible Two's *wince*), and just other obstacles that had prevented me from even considering writing anything. But alas, here I am; sadly overdue for this chapter. But the good thing is, since the final movie is jus around the corner; I have official submerged myself completely back into this story. Anyway, let's get onto your chapter yes?

Also; before we dive into this chapter. Thanks so so so much to all of those who reviewed! I try my best to reply to each and every one of them as quick as I can but sometimes can't. Nevertheless, I can't tell you enough how happy I get when I read a new one for the first time.

xx LCF




Draco dreamed he was on one of the many balconies that lined the Malfoy châteaux in France.

The warm sea breeze drifted over him gently, engulfing him in a salty caress that instantly calmed his frazzled nerves. He took a deep breath through his nose and exhaled from his mouth slowly. The linens that lined the French doors which lead into his private chambers behind him flowed leisurely in the summer air. Pale eyes closed in the rare moment of serenity that overcame him. How long had it been since he had been able to enjoy such simple pleasantries? One year, was it two? It was impossible to distinguish the amount of time that had truly taken place, but Draco found that it wasn’t much of a loss. He was done dwelling over his past, at least for now, and wanted nothing more than to enjoy this serene silence as his eyes swept over the seafront.

Waves crashed onto the jagged cliff upon which the châteaux had been built. Particularly strong incantations and the clever use of magic were the only things that kept the white manor from toppling into the roaring sea below.

The sky grew overcast, and the sea below began to churn violently; waves crashing against the edge of the cliff in a manner that sent unpleasant chills racing down Draco’s spine. It was only a second ago that a gentle wind had played with the strands of his silky hair, and now currents and gales whipped around him with a ferocious speed. The wind whistled in his ears and the French doors behind him snapped shut abruptly.

“You know I never quite imagined you to be the type to enjoy peace and quiet,” came a voice from nowhere.

Draco tensed, his hand subconsciously reaching for a wand that was not there. He whirled around, ready to face whoever was speaking, and found nothing except the sea.

“I always thought you a vain, greedy, selfish little boy. Not someone who was willing to risk everything for someone other than himself. Tell me, what was it that made you accept that quest? What made you take on a task you knew you could not complete?” the voice came again.

“Who are you?” Draco snapped, his eyes narrowed as he watched his surroundings closely. There were no signs of his intruder.

The voice let out a cold laugh at his antics. “You think you can see me? You think that with those pathetic eyes of yours, that you’d be able to track me? You are a weakling, a hatchling trying to prove itself a hawk.”

“You dare—” Draco began but was promptly cut off.

“Yes, I dare. You are not ready Draco Malfoy. Not for this task, not for me, and certainly not for what I’ve got in store for you. But the time will come when you’ll become whole and the legacy of your family will awaken. Until then, I will watch and I will wait. And when the time comes for my debut, you’d best be ready.”

A sudden force hit Draco sharply on his side, pain exploding along his ribcage as he toppled over the railing and fell to the churning sea below.

As Draco plummeted to the ground at breakneck speeds, he caught a glimpse of a shadowed silhouette that was now leaning over the stone railing. In that moment, the clouds parted and a golden beam of light flooded him, chasing away the shadows that hid his identity.

The only thing Draco was able to discern, were the entirely blacked-out eyes and the cruel smirk that tilted the figure’s lips. He crashed into the water then, and was immediately slammed into one of the many jagged stones that jutted from the surface before blacking out completely.

***

Draco’s eyes flew open in the next instant; and he found himself face down on the stone floor back in his room at Hogwarts. He gasped for breath, a light sheen of sweat coating his skin as he shook from the cold. His legs were tangled in the sheets he had dragged onto the floor and his hair fell over his face, damp with cold sweat.

A pained grunt escaped his lips when he tried to right himself and it took several failed attempts to finally make him remain still on the floor. He looked desperately around for his wand, but failed to remember having placed it within his robes’ pocket that was currently in the common room. Gritting his teeth, Draco braced his arms onto the stone floor once more and managed to lift himself half an inch before succumbing to the pain that shot up his right side. His hand lashed out and grabbed the first thing it could hold on to, the oil lamp at his bedside, before he lost his balance and brought the crystal down and unintentionally shattering it in his hand.

Pieces of broken glass bit into his palm that quickly grew slick with blood. After another second of attempting to lift himself with one arm, Draco merely allowed himself to remain motionless on the floor. He took labored breaths, his heart pounding heavily against his chest.

He wasn’t sure how long he had been on the ground when he heard muffled steps coming up his staircase, but he suddenly felt a surge of desperateness begin to fill him.

Merlin let it be Blaise. Please; or Pansy. Anyone is fine really; just don’t let it be her. Don’t let it be bloody Grang—

Draco groaned in annoyance when he caught sight of Granger’s bushy head peering in through the door.

“Malfoy are you alright? I thought I heard glass breaking.” She said as she kept near the doorframe. She had yet to peer inside and Draco was determined to make her leave before she thought about coming in. It was only too bad that she had already made up her mind.

Swinging his door open, she was just about to ask him once again what had happened when she froze in her steps at the sight of him.

“Oh, Merlin! Malfoy are you okay?” she said as she rushed over to him. Draco swatted her hands away from him as she reached to help him up, a sneer plastered on his cool features.

“I’m fine. I wasn’t asking for your help was I, Mudblood?”

Granger looked taken aback for just a brief second before her eyes zeroed in on his bleeding hand and hardened in determination.

“You may not have asked for help Malfoy, but it sure does look like you need it.” She replied waspishly.

Without giving him a chance to argue, Granger immediately placed an arm over her shoulders and hauled him up. Draco shouted in pain as raw agony filled his side. He had no idea what was going on, but he was quite sure that there should be no reason for his side to be in pain. He hadn’t done anything remotely active in weeks and yet it felt as if a dozen bludgers had decided to use his ribcage for target practice. Granger let out a gasp before quickly letting go of him, making sure to let him land on his bare bed.

“Dear Merlin Malfoy, what happened to you?” She asked.

”What the devil are you talking about?” Draco snapped as he took in harsh breaths. Sweat was beginning to bead along his brow and the room was starting to feel increasingly cold.

He didn’t expect to for Granger to touch him again, much less have her slim fingers run down the side of his ribcage where his night shirt had opened. Gray eyes looked to her sharply, a scathing remark ready on the tip of his tongue when he caught sight of what she was talking about. Along his ribcage were a series of blooming purple bruises. Blond brows furrowed in confusion. What had happened?

“Come on Malfoy; let’s get your hand cleaned up.” Granger muttered as she summoned a small basin from the bathroom and filled it with water. Draco snatched his hand away before she could take it.

“Malfoy,” Granger began wearily.

“I’m not going to have you take my hand and put it in some unknown liquid.”

“It’s water and I’m trying to help you, in case you haven’t realized.” She snapped.

“And I already told you that I didn’t need it!” He fired back. “Now get the bloody hell out of my room.”

Granger stood abruptly, her lips pursed into a thin line. “Fine, if that’s the way you want it.”

She slammed the basin onto his nightstand and threw the rag she had summoned to his face. Without another word she turned around and walked out of his room, muttering beneath her breath as she did so. The door slammed behind her quite loudly.

Draco merely glared at her exit for a few seconds before letting out a tired sigh. He caught sight of the rag on his lap and after a moment picked it up cautiously. He cast the basin a brief look before taking another glimpse of his bloody hand. With a dejected sigh, he reached over with his good arm and soaked up the cloth before bringing it over his cuts and started cleaning them. He winced as he washed over a knick and grew impatient when he noticed that there were tiny shards of glass still embedded in his palm. The pieces were so small that he had to squint to get a good look at them and realized that it would be nearly impossible to get them out without his wand on hand. He’d have to get someone to help pull them out.

He bloody hated it when Granger was right.

***

The next morning met Draco with an overcast sky as he slowly padded down the stairs towards the small kitchenette within the Head’s Tower. The thick drapes had been pulled back from the stained-glass windows in the common room and allowed the silvery-white light of day to stream in. It happened to be half-past ten when he peered up at the grandfather clock nestled in the nook to his right and he was unsurprised to find Granger dressed for the day in Muggle attire, her nose buried in an ancient book. For a brief moment, brown eyes appeared over the top of her tome at the sound of his approach before returning to her page.

Draco walked past without a single passing glance.

He entered the kitchenette intent on finding something to eat, when he stopped short as he took note of a steaming cup of tea sitting atop the wooden counter. Draco walked towards it, the smell of cinnamon wafted up to his nose and he took a deep breath. After a moment he gingerly wrapped his good hand around the cup, allowing the warmth of the tea to seep through the ceramic of the cup and into his cold skin. The fact was not lost on him that there was only one possible person who could have made this.

“A peace offering.” rang a voice from the doorway.

Draco turned to see Granger leaning against the frame; her arms crossed over her chest as she held onto her book. Her normally wild hair was pulled back by a plait and the usual distrustful look was gone from her features. She appeared almost, normal without that constant furrow in her brow when she approached him.

Draco said nothing as he arched a blond brow. After his actions from the night before, he had been looking forward to a few days of her silence, thought it didn’t seem to be the case this time.

Granger sighed before she stood up straight and walked towards him, placing an empty teacup in the sink provided to them. She turned to him, her eyes guarded before she tore her gaze from his and instead focused on the wooden countertop where his hand sat.

It was a long moment before either of them said anything. Fortunately, Granger’s idle tone cut through the palpable tension that hung thickly in the air.

“I know that we have our differences, I know that we most likely won’t ever get over them; but I do think that enough is enough.”

Her gaze settled on his poorly-wrapped hand as she continued. “I know you’re competent, Dumbledore wouldn’t have appointed you as Head Boy if you weren’t. And I also know that he had faith that we could put our differences aside for the sake of getting our duties done. I’m not asking to be friends, I don’t want to be friends, but I do want to do my very best at being Head Girl, and I won’t be able to do it by myself as much as I would like to.”

She paused momentarily as her gaze meet his before looking away briefly, as if she were hesitant to get the next words out. After a fleeting moment though, it seemed she had gathered her courage and pressed on.

“You heard us, didn’t you? During the trip to Hogsmeade? You saw the row that Ron and I had and it’s probably the reason why he stormed off in the end.” Granger gave a wry chuckle that was every ounce as bittersweet as it sounded.

“He and I are alike in that way. We both don’t like being seen vulnerable, especially if it’s in front of someone like you, someone who’s tormented us for so many years. When I saw you, I steeled myself, ready for the bombardment of insults I was so sure would come. I mean honestly, you caught us right after a fight we’d had, seen just how unstable we can be. How could you not take advantage of that? It’s how you are, how you’ve always been. But no insults came, you didn’t even speak. You just continued on your way until I’d asked you if you’d seen any of it, even though I knew the answer to that. But you surprised me when you chose to act like you hadn’t seen a thing instead of mocking me like I had expected.”

She paused for a moment, her brown eyes landing on his hand and where the bruises were. “And then there was last night, where I walked in on you during your time of vulnerability. Despite your horrid behavior, I couldn’t help but wonder briefly if it was just a front to keep yourself from looking weak in front of me.”

Another bout of silence followed and Draco began to feel apprehensive. He did not feel quite comfortable with someone of her intellect prying into his actions and taking observations. There were things that she should stay out of, even if they were also things he knew nothing about. Before he could go too far into his thoughts, she began speaking once more; her voice far quieter than he’d ever heard within her presence.

“I know there’s some part of you that’s at least compassionate Malfoy, despite that intense dislike that is a mutual feeling between us… So that’s why I’m here. If we can put aside everything, save for our status as students, we’ll be able to work properly together. I don’t want anything else, just your cooperation.”

Draco stood there for several moments; his thoughts filled his mind to the brim. His Head duties really didn’t matter that much to him, but he knew that he’d have to keep up this façade in order to keep his cover. Also, there were some privileges granted by being Head Boy, advantages he wanted to keep. Like being able to roam about the halls after hours and having access to the restricted section of the library some among many. Not to mention if he’d show Dumbledore that he’d be willing to put aside his differences with Granger if only for the sake of their schoolwork, then there was a high chance that he would grow to be trustworthy in the Headmaster’s eyes and that meant he was one step closer to completing the Dark Lord’s task and keeping his mother safe while simultaneously redeeming the family name.

With his mind made up, gray eyes locked with brown before he raised the steaming cup of tea to his lips and allowed the spiced drink to coat his tongue. Granger took it as his intended answer, and with flick of her wand, had his cut hand wrapped in fresh bandages before she left Draco to his own devices. He could not help the smirk that made its way onto his features as he slightly flexed his newly bound hand.

***

The Lemon Drops’ glossy sugar coat glowed slightly in the light of the sun that streamed into the Headmaster’s office. On any other day, on any other occasion, he would have picked one up and plucked it in his mouth; but today was not one of those days, and it certainly wasn’t any occasion to cause him to want any of the tart confections. Draco scowled at the bowl before him.

Draco sat rigidly; his back perfectly straight and hands set on the armrests of the high-back chair he had been asked to sit in. Professor Dumbledore sat before him, silver beard glowing white in the light of the sun as his bespectacled eyes roved over a piece of parchment on his desk. Long, pale fingers drummed impatiently against the fabric of his seat as Draco grew more irritated with each passing second. He’d rather get all of this nonsense over with instead of tip-toeing around business and prolonging the inevitable punishment that was sure to come.

Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, Dumbledore met Draco’s sharp gaze. “Mr. Malfoy, I hope things have been well since our last run-in.” he inquired. “I see that you’ve done something to injure your hand. I do hope that it isn’t because of a repeat performance from two weeks ago.”

Draco fought down the irritating urge to snap at the older man as he replied, “It was only a small accident that happened in Potions. I didn’t think it was something worth bothering Madame Pomfrey.”

“I see,” Dumbledore replied. “Nevertheless, make sure to take more care next time Mr. Malfoy.”

“Yes Headmaster.”

Draco merely stared at him stonily. It had been two weeks since the impromptu duel he and Blaise had participated in and ones that were spent wasted in his eyes. He’d have much better preferred if Dumbledore had dealt their punishment on the spot, not subject them to this game that made them feel as if every minute action they did was being subjected to his scrutiny at any given hour of the day. Because of this he had been unable to plan or locate the other vanishing cabinet during the span of those two weeks.

It had been more for precaution’s sake than actual nervousness that had caused him to delay the start of his plan. Draco knew, and was correct in his assessment, that after the fight Granger had split-up, Dumbledore would keep an annoyingly close eye on him, Blaise, Potter, and Weasley. So he had done all he could do and went about his business as normal with the exception of his slight gain in interest for his position as Head. Something then caught his attention, and Draco couldn’t help but take a look at the Headmaster as he began to speak.

“There was a time, long ago, that I would have stripped any student of their position as Head for such a lack of moral aptitude. I had hoped that with this responsibility granted upon you, that you would learn to look past petty grudges with your year mates and grow into the young man I know you keep hidden somewhere.”

Draco couldn’t hide the shock that spread across his features at the words of the old man. He had expected, if anything, to be chastised and quite possibly be stripped of his title and serve a few weeks of detention at the very least. But instead here he was, with Dumbledore not looking at him in anger, but in mere disappointment, as if the older man truly had expected better of him. The thought puzzled Draco immensely.

“As such, in order to keep your title, I expect to see your name on the roster for the Senior Dueling Club and the list for voluntary tutors, along with a daily note of how you are advancing with Miss Granger for preparations regarding the Halloween festivities you have yet to inform me of. Involvement in school activities aside from the House teams seems like a necessary evil for you, Mr. Malfoy.”

“You can’t possibly serious.” Draco muttered while looking thoroughly put out at the news. How was he possibly going to find a way to save his mother when all Dumbledore was doing was placing more obstacles in his way?

“On the contrary Mr. Malfoy you will see that I am completely serious about this.”

Bloody fantastic, he thought sourly.

“That will be all for now, you’re free to go.” Draco stood hastily at his words and made his way over to the door in quick strides, his cloak billowing behind him in a flourish. “Do keep in mind however, that I expect the first note of progression on my desk tonight before curfew and I shall be sure to ask for your company once more in the near future.”

The Malfoy heir made no move aside from a sharp jerk of his head which may or may not have been a show of his assent before he quickly exited the office.

Once the door closed behind him with an audible click, Dumbledore removed his half-moon spectacles from their perch on his nose and rubbed his eyes wearily and looked to his blackened hand.

Time was starting to grow short.

***

“Just add an assortment of sweets at the House tables for dinner.”

“No.”

“Why not?”

“Because Dumbledore said this was to be a social event.”

“Dinner is considered a social event, Granger.”

“You very well know that that’s not what he meant by it!” she snapped.

Draco didn’t bother to hide the way he rolled his eyes at her, or the disgruntled scowl that had successfully made its way onto his face. He leaned forward slightly in his seat on a plush armchair, his elbows propped on his knees as his good hand ran through his hair in exasperation. Trying to get along with Granger enough to complete their blasted assignment was proving to be much harder than he expected. Then again, he hadn’t been expecting very much in the first place.

He peered at her through the corner of his eye, his sight marred by the silvery strands of hair that had the annoying habit of falling in front of his face when he failed to slick it back or comb it. Beyond his pale strands of hair sat Granger in the armchair across from him with a scowl on her face as she looked at him like he was some simpleton.

Draco rolled his eyes once more, a small—childish, part of him gleeful when he saw her scowl deepen. “Don’t look at me like that Granger, or you’ll end up looking like a hag by the time you hit twenty.”

“How about instead of worrying over any premature wrinkles I may get in the future, why don’t you actually try and bring forth an idea worth entertaining!” She snapped shrilly.

“How about you giving it a try, as you’re clearly not happy with any suggestions I make.” He drawled smoothly as he leaned back in his seat and closed his eyes.

They had been at this for the past hour or so. Most of it was spent fighting, of course, but only because she came up with the most abysmal ideas and apparently his weren’t social enough for her tastes.

As if she knew how to be. Her entire self practically revolves around those bloody morons.

“Fine, how about a ball?” she offered, already scribbling away at the parchment that sat before her.

No.” he replied stonily.

This made Granger look up in slight confusion. “Why not? Everyone’s wanted to have another dance since the Yule Ball in Fourth year. It’d be a perfect excuse.”

“It’s too overplayed. Balls are always going to be the go-to activity around here, why not think of something a little more creative?  Besides, it’ll be horrible once all of the female populace in the castle begin their insane pre-ball rituals.”

Granger mercifully lapsed into a contemplative silence for several moments, and if Draco concentrated hard enough, he was sure he could see the wheels in her head turning. Draco leaned into his chair a little further, willing the headache that he had started to develop to go away. After a few more moments of silent bliss, a soft gasp rang out in the quiet and Granger’s voice filled the air once again.

“I’ve got it. I know what we can do for Halloween.”

Draco opened one gray eye towards her, his gaze prompting. Granger looked to him then, her eyes holding nothing but delight at the thoughts that were swarming in her head.

“Let’s have a carnival.”

***

It was late into the night when Draco slipped out of the common room. His hair was ill-kept and the Dark Mark was acting up once more. He tugged his left sleeve down self-consciously for the umpteenth time within ten minutes.

He walked through the shadowed corridors quickly, making sure to take light steps so as not to draw any attention to himself and keeping to the shadows. Gray eyes peered around corners to make sure that Mrs. Norris was nowhere to be seen and he found himself using spells frequently to make sure that he was, indeed, alone in the dark. It was just past one in the morning, and patrols had been completed an hour ago. If a teacher caught him out of bed right now, there would be little for him to say to cover himself no matter the fact that he was allowed to roam about after curfew. He was supposed to be setting an example.

As he peered around the corner to ensure his solitude, Draco quickly turned the corner and came to a halt before the unicorn tapestry that now covered what he knew to be the entrance to the Room of Requirement.

He passed it once, twice, thrice; all while chanting within his head: I need to find the cabinet where Theo got lost in. I must find the other vanishing cabinet.

Finally, after what seemed like ages of pacing back and forth, the tapestry gave way as two gilded doors appeared before him. Draco walked towards them tentatively, his hand reaching out to take hold of the handles. Taking one deep breath, he pushed the doors open and stepped inside.

He wasn’t sure what he expected when he walked into the Room of Requirement, but it certainly wasn’t for it to be clustered. Random items and books were stacked in towers that surrounded him, the room filled with different sounds and scents to which he had never experienced before. In the back of his mind, he subconsciously wished them to go away. Just as the thought formed in his mind, a current of magic washed over him and the sounds and scents fell away in an instant; leaving him to stand alone in a dark room with nothing but the sound of his breath.

Draco maneuvered the room easily, stepping over fallen brooms and littered papers. His robes got caught in several knick-knacks enough times for him to grow impatient before he finally removed it and placed it on a coat rack.

It was when he caught sight of the shadow that he paused in his step.

It stood on the far left of the room, before a Persian rug that was oddly devoid of any artifacts saved for the runes that had been burned onto it. Déjà vu washed over him as he recalled the same way the other cabinet had caught his attention at Borgin and Burkes over a fortnight ago. Hastily, Draco made his way over to it, his heart pounding in his chest at the thought of it being what he both knew and dreaded it to be.

It was only an arm’s reach away now and a pale hand slowly reached towards the dark cloth that covered its existence. With one swift tug, he removed the tarp; his mind uncharacteristically blank as it fell away to remove a proud cabinet just as ornate and intricate as the one that resided within Borgin and Burkes.

Gray eyes looked up and down the craftsmanship before taking note of the Latin carved into it. He furrowed his brow slightly; the other cabinet did not have any carvings like these that he could recall. If there had been any, they certainly didn’t grasp his attention like these did. Something about the carvings called out to him, and without hesitance Draco used the tips of his fingers to feel the etching on the surface of the wood. It was the only distinction between this one and its twin, and yet he felt they were still one in the same as the heavy thrum of magic swirled within.

Harmonia Nectere Passus.

This was it. It was with this cabinet that he would be able to bring his plan to fruition. It would be with this cabinet and its twin that he would bring about the demise of Albus Dumbledore and regain honor to the Malfoy name once more.

This was the key to his success.




A/N: And there it is, hopefully it lived up to the wait. Sorry again you guys for the long wait. I'll be sure to keep writing as I go along. If you're ever curious about how far I am concerned wih a chapter from any of my fics; please feel free to drop by my author's page as I'll have chapter stats on my About Me section.

Thanks again every one and I'll see you soon!

xx L

Track This Story: Feed


Write a Review

out of 10

JOIN HARRY POTTER FANFICTION


Get access to every new feature the moment it comes out.

Register Today!