Do you ever wonder what the point of doing something is? Do you ever ask yourself what the result is going to be? Sometimes, I wonder what I’m doing, but then I think that maybe I’ll find the verdict at the end of it, at the end of the day. Because at the end of everything, there is always a result, even if it’s just that you’ll find the final result later on...

-If Only






Draco Malfoy sat nervously in the Ministry car, clenching and unclenching his fists. He knew he was innocent, but would anyone believe him? He looked around the car that the Ministry had provided for transportation from the Manor to the Ministry’s underground location. His stomach began to do somersault after somersault. Marcus Buldock sat on the chair opposite him in the spacious limousine and his Mother sat with glassy eyes, staring outside, through the darkly tinted windows as the landscape quickly rushed by, she opened and closed her mouth continuously, as if gasping for air. Her long, pale fingers drummed continuously on her lap, as if she were creating her own beat. Finally, she turned towards her son.

“You really mustn’t go into the courtroom on an empty stomach, dear,” she said, gesturing to a lightly toasted sandwich on the table between them.

“Mother, I already told you, I’m fine,” Draco said, “Honestly!” He added, trying to persuade his mother.

Narcissa’s eyes filled with tears as she watched her son go back to clenching and unclenching his fists. What had happened to those days where he used to play next to her with his small flying dragon? Or when he had been the happiest child to have a small zooming broom that would fly only a metre off the ground? It was only seven A.M., but she could have sworn that it was hours after that! It seemed as if the day was made to tantalize and tease her and push her to the edge. She turned her head once more to look outside the window. They were now in a deserted place with no houses except for the occasional cottages and no life but a few grazing horses and cows. A few minutes later, a voice interjected her thoughts of how simple life never was.

“We have reached your destination, we will wait for your arrival after you have finished. Please do not forget any belongings. Thank-you and have a fine day,”

All three of the passengers looked startled by the sudden announcement, but soon recovered. Draco looked fearfully at his mother, than at Mr Buldock. He swallowed deeply before leading the way out into the suffocatingly clear air.

The small group walked forward towards the two large wooden doors where they were greeted by two security men who were muscular and tall. One of them gave a little gesture to the other and they both turned to the threesome.

“You must be Mr Malfoy,” One of the men said, his voice deep and masculine.

“Of course he is, Trevor, who else are we expecting?” The other said, his voice harsh and even deeper. Trevor rolled his eyes and gestured with his hand for the small group to follow him. As they continued through the door, they walked straight through a blurry haze. Draco looked around confusedly, the haze hadn’t taken any effect on him; why was it there? Seeing Draco’s expression, Trevor hurriedly explained.

“It’s a spell,” He said simply.                                                                                 

“To do what?” Draco asked, genuinely curious.

“To test anyone to make sure they’re not disguised as anyone else. It washes off Polyjuice Potion, Disguising Hexes, Transfiguration, you know, all that. It’s top security and real handy, especially with all the Death Eater cases... sly people they were,” He answered back. His eyes then widened in shock as behind them Narcissa took a sharp intake of breath, Draco cringed and the second guard behind them made a sound between a cough and a laugh.

“Oh, I never meant – I didn’t mean – I wasn’t bagging them out or anything – I’m sorry,” He cringed slightly, his cheeks beginning to tinge a slight pink.

The little group walked on, now in an awkward silence. They walked down a large, black corridor that seemed to go on forever. Suddenly, three doors appeared, one on the right, one on the left, and one straight ahead. They each had a silver door knob and were decorated with little, swirling, silver vines. Both guards put their hands in a random spot on the door closest to the small group and the vines moved, engulfing their hands completely, up to their elbows. The silver leaves twisted upwards slithering along their arms. Draco watched, fascinated as behind him, Narcissa gave a little gasp. After a few seconds, the vines suddenly let go, slithering delicately backwards, until they only decorated the edges of the doors. The two guards stepped back expressionless, as if nothing out of the ordinary had just happened. The silver door knob turned black, before splitting into two and opening to reveal a small key hole. The guard, who was not Trevor, pulled out a small, black key that seemed to be tangled with silver vines and he fit it through the keyhole which engulfed it for hardly a second before it fell into the guards awaiting hands. The door opened to reveal a small room, dingy and highly ordinary room which was nothing like its outer layer.

“Why is there a need for such high security, may I ask?” Narcissa questioned in a small voice, still taken aback by the whole process.

The guard with the key turned around, a stoic expression painted on his face. “This is a cell to for the sole purpose of holding a criminal before and after the hearing or trial, Mrs Malfoy. Your son here and Mr Buldock will stay here to prepare, but they will be under close supervision,” he said with a tone of authority.

Narcissa’s expression turned into one of shock as soon as she heard what the guard had just said, “But of course, you must be mistaken Mr...?” She said with a smile that she forced onto her face.

“Mortimer Revrie. And no, I am by no means mistaken. Your son w-“

“But of course Mortimer, I will stay with my son, no doubt?” Narcissa said.

“I’m sorry Mrs Malfoy; your son must stay here with only Mr Buldock as this room holds only three. Trevor here will stay for supervision and that will be that,”

“I’m sure you can understand Mr Revrie,” she began angrily, “that I am a mother and –“

“And as a mother, you should want the best for your son. The best choice would be that of Mr Malfoy and Mr Buldock staying here so they can strengthen their case for the trial,” Mortimer said, a little impatient now.

“Surely you are not telling me how to be a mother! I have no doubt that I have had more experience than anyone here, considering I am the only women with a child,” Mrs Malfoy was now furious, how dare a stranger tell her how to be the best possible mother?

“I meant nothing of that nature Mrs Malfoy. I am simply doing my job and my job was to bring the suspect with his lawyer here and take you to the courtroom. Please, do not make me use force, Mrs Malfoy,” He said, he too becoming angry.

“Is that a threat?” Narcissa spat, enraged.

“Moth-“ Draco began.

“Now, now Draco, you just get ready for the case while I deal with this – this creature,” She snarled.

“Mother, it’s okay, just go, I’ll be fine,” He said a little more forcefully.

The two guards and Mr Buldock all watched as Narcissa stared at her son, tears welling up in her eyes.

“Please don’t cry, Mother. Just go and I’ll see you in a little while, okay?”

Narcissa nodded and reached forward to give her son a hug. The tears spilt as she thought that this may be the last time she could hold her son for at least a while. “I love you,” she whispered, as the tears ran down her face.

“I love you too,” Draco said, kissing his mother’s forehead. He pulled out of the hug and gave his mother a little push with a small smile on his face. She tried to smile back, but failed, so she just turned to Marcus Buldock and gave him a small nod, before walking out of the open door with her head held high.

Mortimer nudged Trevor who nodded and followed Narcissa. They had decided that Mortimer should stay as far away from Narcissa as possible.

***

The judge’s gavel hit the desk thrice.

“Order! Order in the courtroom!” His voice was magically magnified and the large crowd quietened quickly, taking their seats. The judge sat down and a guard to his right began to speak.

“This is Trial 12749; The Murder of Mr Eric Shattice,” He said in a loud, clear voice. “May the alleged, Mr Malfoy please enter now and take his seat?” He directed his voice at a heavy white door behind him.

The door opened. Draco Malfoy emerged with Marcus Buldock by his side, followed by the two guards. Draco followed Marcus who took the lead and sat at a desk. He looked around the room. He quickly met eyes with his mother who gave him a small, encouraging smile. He saw the faces of both familiar and unfamiliar people, all who stared at him. He had no idea how to differentiate between those who did and didn’t believe him to be innocent. Behind him, he saw Harry Potter with his friends, but surprisingly, no Hermione. Ron looked at Draco with what he thought was the filthiest look he could muster. A smirk crossed Draco’s face at the look of Weasley – no matter how many times he had saved his life, he still wasn’t able to find the slightest thing about him to like. He saw from the corner of his eye, Blaise Zabini, who was shaking his head, trying to signal to him to keep sensible and so he did. Marcus directed him to a chair in the centre of the large desks and he lowered himself cautiously into it, knowing that when he would, the chair would lock him down. It did. Once he rested his arms on the armrests, a cuff on each arm of the chair appeared and tightened around his wrist. Not liking it and out of shock, Draco tried to wriggle free of the metal braces, only to have them tighten further.

“Ladies and Gentlemen, we are here this afternoon to decide on the future of Mr Draco Malfoy, who has been accused of murdering Muggleborn, Eric Shattice. So without further ado, we will have the questioning and statements of both Mr Marcus Buldock and Mr Billius Fid,” The judge said in a deep, clear voice, magnified by the wand he had pressed into his throat so that the whole courtroom would be able to hear.

As Draco looked around yet again, he saw Billius Fid throw him a quick glare, disgust written all over his face. Draco smiled back sweetly, his attitude getting the best of him.

Judge Robert Lawton gestured for the silence, announcing that the questioning would now begin. As Draco looked up at the judge, his heart began to race nervously yet again. He could feel his palms become sweaty and began opening and closing them repeatedly. All the eyes around him were boring into him and as if they could see inside of him and were trying to burn his insides. The judge cleared his throat and Malfoy’s attention flicked gratefully to him.

“Mr Draco Malfoy, here before us today as a defendant, do you swear to tell the truth and nothing but the truth?” Judge Lawton questioned seriously.

“I do,” Malfoy said plainly.

“... and do you promise to answer any questions to your full ability?”

“I do,”

“Mr Malfoy, do you promise not to alter any truths and tell the story as it happened?”

“I do,” Draco repeated.

“In that case, will Mr Fid come up for the questioning of Draco Malfoy?” The judge requested.

“Of course,” Billius replied in a rather squeaky, rat-like voice. He walked up with a businessman expression about him, his heavy black shoes making a small thudding noise with every step taken. Thud, thud, thud! As he approached the front, he turned around to look swiftly at the crowd and then walked closer to Draco’s chair. Pacing back and forth before him, Billius Fid began to question Draco Malfoy.

“Mr Malfoy,” He addressed, once again in his squeaky tone of voice, “Were you, or were you not working a late shift at the bookshop of Diagon Alley, Flourish & Blotts?” He asked, still pacing.

“I was,” Malfoy answered, quite simply.

“Was this shift a voluntary shift or were you rostered on that night?”

“Why would I work extra hours?” Draco replied.

“I think, Mr Malfoy, that it is my time for questioning and not yours. So was the shift voluntary or not?” Mr Fid repeated.

“It was not,” Draco said with a slight roll of his eyes before he could stop himself.

“What exactly were you doing at around, let’s say ten thirty P.M.?”

“Working?”

“Once again, Mr Malfoy, it is my time for questioning!” The lawyer said harshly, staring Malfoy down. “Now, please, answer the question specifically!

“I was...” Draco said, biting back a snide comment. He thought back to the day and did not know what exactly he was doing at that exact moment, but he did remember looking down at his watch at ten twenty-two P.M. “I was stacking new books that had just been delivered the previous day,”

“Where did this job take place?”

Biting his tongue again, Draco replied impatiently. “Level two in the ‘Staff Only’ back room, just beside the bathrooms,” he said precisely, tempted to tell the stupid lawyer that he was also in Flourish & Blotts, Diagon Alley, in Magical London, in the United Kingdom, Planet Earth, Solar System and so on...

“So you weren’t on the streets?”

“Obviously not! I just told you that I was on Level Two, stacking books!” Maybe he should have specified that he was in Flourish & Blotts.

“All right, so at the time of ten-thirty P.M., you were working a late shift, stacking books on the second level of Flourish & Blotts. Am I correct?” Fid asked.

Draco nodded, not trusting his own tongue.

“Mr Malfoy is it true that your father was a Death Eater when the Dark Lord still reigned?”

“Yes,” Draco muttered.

“Is it true that you were also a Death Eater?”

Draco nodded.

“What about your mother, was she a Death Eater too?”

“Only by force,” Draco said defensively. He looked at his mother who looked at him, tears welling in her eyes.

“But she was, correct?”

“She had no choice,” he stated.

“Mr Malfoy, everybody has a choice,”

“Not my mother,” Draco replied defiantly.

Billius Fid moved on, “Was your father an aggressive man?”

Draco nodded, remembering his father’s aggression.

“Were you or were you not assigned the job of murdering Albus Dumbledore, former Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witch Craft and Wizardry, by Voldemort himself?”

“Only to revenge my parents,” Draco said quietly, looking down at his hands, hating that part of his past and wishing it would stay just there – in the past.

“But Voldemort would not put the mission in your hands if he didn’t think you were capable,” the lawyer stated.

“How would you know?” Draco asked furiously, “How would you know that he wouldn’t?” Draco ignored the requests to be quiet from both the judge and the lawyer pacing before him. “Voldemort had a dark mind. He wanted a reason for my father and Mother to suffer, he wanted a reason to make them hurt! That’s why he chose me! Not because I’m capable, because he knew I would fail and had planned it that way so that he could kill off my family one by one. He didn’t do it because he trusted me to succeed,” he repeated, “He did it because he wanted to and he could!” Because he thought death was a punishment, but didn’t know then that I would have gladly walked to death myself! He had wanted to continue, to tell the public what he felt, but what good would it do? He had yelled furiously, feeling the rage seep into his system and spread like wildfire.

“Mr Malfoy, please, control yourself!” Judge Lawton yelled, banging the gavel down with such force. “I think that will be all for your questioning Mr Fid, please give your final words,” The Judge said impatiently as the crowd tutted.

Billius Fid nodded, red in the face, he began with his final statement.

“Ladies and Gentlemen, here we have, the accused Mr Draco Malfoy, who coincidentally, was a Death Eater and was raised amongst a family of aggression and surrounded by other Death Eaters. Here we have someone who knows of nothing but aggression and unkind ways. He even had a close relationship with the Dark Lord himself – even physically the two were close – having Voldemort live under the same roof of which you do is bound to draw the two together, correct? So, why would Draco Malfoy not be able to commit this unforgivable crime? He was taught to think in a dark state and manner. He grew up surrounded by the wrong doing in belief that it was indeed right. He was even taught to hate Muggleborns! Draco Malfoy is absolutely and undoubtedly capable of such a crime! For goodness sake, his whole family is a cold hearted and ev--!”

 Draco bit his tongue to hold back a condescending retort.

“Objection!” Marcus Buldock yelled as if expecting and waiting for the moment this would happen, “Mr Fid is judging on his own opinions of the accused and his family which is against court orders!” He said rising to his feet and slamming his fist upon the table in the heat of the moment.

“Please keep your own personal thoughts out of this courtroom,” Judge Lawton agreed.

A second of tense silence. Marcus Buldock took his seat. Fid continued.

“To conclude my statement, Mr Malfoy is more than capable of committing this crime. He has been taught the dark ways and the dark arts as a way of life and is capable of such aggression as shown in this case. Therefore, Mr Malfoy could very well be the criminal in this act.” Billius Fid walked off, his head bent down, to his desk where he poured himself a cup of water and hid behind it busying himself with little things.

Mr Buldock was called up to commence with his own questioning and as he walked up to face Draco, he began to go over his questions in his head. Everybody waited impatiently as Marcus took a moment to think about how he was going to begin.

“Mr Malfoy,” he began, taking away his hand from his chin where he had been rubbing it pensively and instead putting it behind his back. “Mr Malfoy, could you please tell us the events of your day yesterday?”

“I woke up, read the Prophet, packed a few things for school next week, read a bit of my novel, ate lunch, went to work, went on my break, then came home for the night,” Draco answered easily.

Buldock nodded, “Yes, yes, and what time were you rostered on?”

“One P.M. ‘till three, then four P.M. ‘till eleven,”

“And are these your usual shift hours?”

Draco nodded, “On Saturdays, yes,”

“Was there anything peculiar about that day? Did you wake up feeling sick? Did an odd stranger approach you other than a customer? Or did someone make contact with you or something you ate or drank?”

“No,” Draco answered simply.

“Was business that day slow or unusual?”

“During the day it was quite busy with the whole pre-school rush but as it neared dark, it began to slow down, but that’s usual,”

“Did anything out of the ordinary happen at work? Particularly at night?”

Draco thought back to the night. There had been something, but at the time he had just convinced himself that he was imagining things. “Well right before the yelling began, I heard some muffled footsteps,”

The crowd began murmuring and whispering, now interested and alert. Marcus pressed on with the case giving an encouraging nod.

“Was anybody around at the time – any supposed witnesses or somebody who wouldn’t have or shouldn’t have been present?”

“No, my last customer left at around nine-forty and the other co worker left at nine-thirty, but that was his usual time,”

“So nobody was around at the time,” Buldock said, more to himself than anybody else as he began to rub his stubbled chin once again.

“Draco,” he said looking up, new inspiration evident in his sparkling eyes, “Would you say that you are a changed man since the downfall of Voldemort?”

“Definitely,”

“How so?”

“I’ve changed my line of thought. No longer am I a hater, I’ve grown to accept that things may not always turn out to be how I want them to and I am also no longer always anxious and nervous over the lives and safety of my family and friends – I’m able to think straight once more. I don’t have to live a split and double life anymore so—“

“’...Double life’? Could you define what you mean by that?”

“Like I said, I can live my life without worrying about the immediate deaths of people around me. My mind is no longer dominated by the welfare and happenings of not only myself but my loved ones. And, for example, I am not being a supposed innocent student, while going home and being forced into a horrible task. I am no longer under the pressure,”

Throughout the whole questioning process, Marcus Buldock had begun to conjure and piece together his final statement. Knowing now, what he was going to say, he turned to face the crowd behind him.

“Ladies and Gentlemen, here we have today a man who has gone through a great deal both emotionally and physically over the last few years. He was once a Death Eater, but may I put emphasis on the tense I used. Was. Past tense. It was in the past and now we begin the past’s future – a new beginning.

“Our case today was one of murder. Mr Billius Fid here is stating that Malfoy is guilty, but with no witnesses and evidence, how can we truly be sure? You have just seen now, how he has judged by his own personal opinions and beliefs and most probably nothing more.

“The death of this man occurred two weeks ago, when Draco was being put under a one year probation, so he was either in the courtroom, or being closely monitored by the Ministry. As we, here today all know, any of those who are put under probation are followed by Ministry Aurors to monitor and watch the behaviour of said person for at least the first week – two weeks ago, young Mr Draco Malfoy here, was one of those people.

“Furthermore, Draco is being accused of not only murdering the victim but also two weeks later, purposefully making the dead corpse yell out the name. Coroners and Aurors together have worked to identify the spell and so they have – the spell was designed to make one yell a specific name given and why would he do that? It is as if purposefully condemning himself, which I assure you my client, Draco Malfoy did not want to do.

“I tell you once and for all, this man is innocent of all charges!” Marcus Buldock ended his statement with an air of finality, as he sucked in a deep breath of relief. His face tinged a light red, he turned to the Judge who nodded with a small smile to the lawyer and he then commenced to his own seat where he momentarily slumped in his wooden chair before straightening back up.

The murmurs began once again, this time louder than before. “Order to the court as the Wizengamot decides upon their final verdict.” One of the guards boomed from a corner near the Judge’s podium.

Malfoy looked around, his heart beating, a frantic drum against his rib cages, threatening to jump out through his throat. He swallowed as if pushing it down. He looked to his mother who had glassy eyes. She mouthed three words to her one and only son.

“I love you,” Draco felt his eyes water, he felt it uncanny to show any more signs of vulnerability so he swallowed again and gave what he hoped to be a convincing smile. He could no longer feel any part of himself with the exception of his heart which was beating as if it were its last time. The guards came up behind Draco and stood by his chair –whether ready to whisk him off to Azkaban or free him he had no idea. As he sat in his hard chair, he could no longer turn around to see his mothers comforting smile as the guard was standing in the way. He sat, looking straight ahead, concentrating on breathing. In. Out. In. Out. In... he reminded himself constantly.

The silence hung over the court room eerily as if it were a large, black cloud threatening to let its first drops fall before the hammering rain and flashing lightening storm began. It drew on for minutes which seemed to feel like the final hours of eternity to Draco. The whole time Draco felt his conscience telling him that he knew the truth and if only he could tell the court room he would be free of any charges. But he couldn’t tell them, because as much as it was tempting, it was also much too dangerous to even think about.

Looking straight ahead, Draco could see and hear the whispers of the jury. The silent conversation would decide his future. He couldn’t help but wonder. What if the jury too would judge by personal opinions and beliefs? If so he was definitely damned.

Finally the courtroom went completely silent. The jury’s whispered conversation came to a sudden halt and the eyes of the whole Wizengamot were set on him. Draco felt the tension hit the limit. He knew it was now at the top of the rollercoaster ride and would either go down smoothly or very badly. His stomach lurched; he felt his hands become clammy once again and his throat tight. He hated the feeling. He felt more vulnerable than ever and he hated the fact that he was bound to this damned chair. He hated that he couldn’t move and fight back – he would rather die trying than sit here as he watched the war go on. He hated it. He also hated the stupid rollercoaster he was constantly on with all the tight turns and spins – going up and down. He wanted to get off the ride and walk the land as it was; he wanted to feel the hard ground beneath his feet that told him that he was stable and safe – that he wasn’t vulnerable anymore and he could fight back at anything that came at him. Even if he didn’t get a refund for his ticket, he just wanted it to end. He wanted this feeling to end.

“The Wizengamot have come to their final decision.” The guard said. “Those in favour of convicting Mr Malfoy of the murder and dark magic upon Eric Shattice, please raise your arm and say ‘I’.”

In his head, Draco quickly calculated that there were twenty-five hands in the air. Every spoken word shot through his stomach like a dagger to the heart.

“And those in favour of dropping all charges and seeing Mr Draco not guilty...,” The guard continued.

The hands shot up and the ‘I’s sounded. Draco became numb all over, unable to tell if he was seeing correctly or if it was all just a mind distorting hallucination. The gavel hit the desk and Judge Lawton spoke his last words before the case was closed.

“Draco Malfoy is hereby found... innocent!” The words hit Draco as if a huge wave hitting a rock. He let out a breath that he had subconsciously drew in and held. He realised then that he was innocent, but also that he was wrong – the rollercoaster wouldn’t go down smoothly, it wasn’t designed that way. So as he held onto the bar of his cart, he went down the steep hill that had been this whole situation, but just as he reached the bottom, he realised the ride hadn’t finished yet. There was still more to come he just couldn’t see it yet...

 




WHEW! And chapter seven is done and dusted! I’m so sorry to all my regular readers for the incredible wait and to any new readers, WELCOME! Aha, hope you’re enjoying so far, why don’t you drop into the review box and tell me how you think it’s going (: So, any suggestions, fix ups, ideas ... anything at all, please feel free to review or P.M. me.

OH! And I’m sorry for the kind of dull chapter, it was kind of a fill in, but necessary never the less. It gets more interesting I promise and I’m up to chapter 18 in my book, just haven’t gotten to typing it up and editing and blah blah, because there’s been so much drama as of late. Sorry for the delay guys, really I am.

I shall be off now with no more talk, much love, drop in a review if you feel like it (: Thanks again for reading and until next chapter...

Xoxo <3

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