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Beltane Night
III: Lore

“Narcissa I don’t know how you can stand there like you aren’t freezing!” exclaimed Hermione. She had decided that instead of using the floo she would apparate near the house and walk. She realized now, and berated herself in her head, that it was a bad idea to want to walk through the snow. The idea had been romanticized because of her love of snow and the winter holidays.

 The snow was melting through this month and she was getting less time to admire it, and now it had been reduced to puddles and mud. Narcissa was on the other side of the Malfoy gate, opening it up for Hermione.

“Years of practice dear, now do you see why I opened up the floo?” Narcissa chided. She opened up the large gates and Hermione stepped inside shivering. Hermione quickly took the arm of Narcissa and they both walked towards the house.

“I see, I’ll have to listen to you more often,” Hermione conceded.

“That’s all I’m asking,” Narcissa smirked.

They walked inside the house and Mitzi, the house elf, was already there to take Hermione’s coat and gloves. The whole house was warm and welcoming compared to the last time she had been there. Narcissa had taken it upon herself to create a warmer environment than the previous Malfoy generation that lived there, although she kept it traditional to the outside press who could be lurking about.

 “Missus would you like something?” Mitzi asked with a meek voice. Mitzi was by far the quietest house elf that Hermione had come across; she was demure and overly polite, even for a house elf. Hermione also found out that Mitzi loved to wear false eyelashes. Narcissa and Hermione had bought her enough pairs to last her two life times and more. Hermione didn’t understand the draw to them but Mitzi claimed they made her feel beautiful, so that was reason enough for her.

The Malfoy men really didn’t understand it and when Mitzi first came around Lucius made her cry, and Hermione had ended up yelling at him. She took the tea, that Mitzi brought, and dumped it into the fire; so Lucius was unable to enjoy a thing after that. When Draco openly laughed she hexed him off of his couch.

“If you could Mitzi, a cup of hot cocoa, please?” Hermione asked. She rubbed her hands together and placed them against her stomach for warmth. Narcissa only clicked her tongue and rolled her eyes at Hermione, amused at her mannerisms.

“Make that two Mitzi,” Narcissa said, and motioned for Hermione to follow her towards her wing of the house. If there was one thing that Hermione admired about the Manor was how organized the house was; not to mention the sheer size of the library.

Hermione smiled and re-wrapped her scarf around her neck while following Narcissa towards her private wing. Hermione had been there quite a few times with the witch, it was where they were able to have absolute silence and girl time. Hermione had often found herself flooing to Narcissa’s study there after a terrible day at Hogwarts, but only when she could not go see McGonagall. Minerva had allowed this only after having a long talk with the Lady Malfoy.

“What are we working on today, boss?” Hermione joked.

“Today we are going to be brewing a few potions, and I’m going to teach you what body oils and lotions that you will need to use. I’ll keep everything here of course, since I’m going to try and persuade you to spend your Beltane month here,” she replied cheekily. Hermione loved staying with Narcissa, but that would mean almost half a month of putting up with her husband and son. Although, she had done it before as a child and they were far worse then.

“We shall see, but what are these potions?” Hermione questioned as they started to walk past the family study.  It was the one room in the house that held no wards and everyone was welcomed inside; much like the drawing room.

Lucius was inside with Draco, and they seemed to be arguing about something from where she stood. Draco picked up a deer skull from the table and clutched it in his hands, making Hermione gasp lightly; it caught their attention immediately. Narcissa stopped and turned around promptly to peer inside at what her boys were doing, and it resulted in her clicking her tongue again; it created a tsk sound.

“Oh wow,” Hermione blurted out without thinking. Draco became flustered and quickly put his deer skull down in surprise, but Lucius stepped over towards the door; effectively blocking him from view.

“Ladies, what a lovely surprise,” He said politely. He smirked when he looked over Hermione and she felt her cheeks heat up.

“Yes, it is. Be good dear,” Narcissa spoke lovingly towards her husband and caressed his cheek before walking away from the door of the study. Hermione still stood in shock, even after Lucius had shut the door to the study. She stared at the door for a few moments before bolting down the hall towards Narcissa who had kept her pace up.

“You were not supposed to see that, it’s unfortunate, but it’s nothing too terrible. The men are far more secretive about their rituals then us. Lucius has a strange way of showing approval,” Narcissa mused, and pushed open the large doors to her wing of the house. Hermione stayed on her heels as they rounded the corner and towards her personal study.

“Showing approval?” Hermione questioned and tucked a stray piece of hair behind her ear.

“Yes, Draco has been one of the few men who have been taking this seriously and the fact that you seemed so entranced by the deer skull is approval. The fact that Lucius even acknowledged us was his way of saying that he’s proud of Draco, and his accomplishment,” Narcissa dismissed it with a wave of her hand and brought Hermione over to her vanity.

Hermione sat down lightly and stared at her own reflection. She had started to look her age the past couple of years and she was finally looking like a young woman. Narcissa stood behind her and clicked her fingers together; a few drawers opened and revealed her personal stock of hair brushes and glamour potions.

“Why did Mal—Draco, seem embarrassed then?” Hermione asked, his name feeling foreign on her tongue.

“He’s a boy, I don’t know why he does half of the things he does, but you were staring dear; quite blatantly at that. It’s just considered slightly inappropriate before Beltane to see their mask, but don’t fret because it’s already forgotten,” Narcissa told her gently, and started to apply a few glamour charms to Hermione’s hair. She then picked up an older looking silver vanity brush and gently began to brush Hermione’s hair. Hermione’s head was still reeling from the fact that Lucius was playing ‘my horse is bigger than yours’ with no other competitor in sight.

Mitzi popped into the study with two hot chocolates and placed them down on Narcissa’s stand that was next to the vanity. They thanked the little house elf and she apparted from the room after asking if they needed anything else.

“My mother used to do this or me when I was little,” Hermione recalled fondly and watched Narcissa as she worked the brush through her hair. A small smile spread on her lips and she stopped her brushing for a moment before regaining her composure and Hermione felt her begin to brush again, it was untangling and softening her hair.

She pulled Hermione’s hair back and played with it gently, Hermione saw her face deep in contemplation, “You know that I never had a daughter. I’d like to imagine though if she was alive—that she would be like—well like you,” Narcissa whispered. Narcissa’s hands squeezed Hermione’s shoulders fondly.

“Thank you, I know that you’re not, but if there was anyone who could help fill the void—it’s you—it’s been you,” Hermione finished and beamed up at the woman. They acknowledged each other’s losses. Narcissa had stray tears in her eyes and quickly wiped them away. She parted and played with Hermione’s hair while trying to regain her composure. Hermione knew it was hard for her to only have one child. They had discussed it before, she worshiped her son and the ground he walked on and prayed for another child to give him a sibling. Every pregnancy after was a miscarriage and her heart couldn’t bear it.

Hermione gently moved her hand up to Narcissa’s and squeezed it; her hand trapped Narcissa’s against her shoulder. Narcissa looked down and for a moment Hermione saw her inner-wall fall. She leaned down and hugged Hermione’s head to her chest.

She barely saw Narcissa without the Lady Malfoy mask plastered on her face; even though she was genuine with Hermione, she had kept this façade of a woman up. The world thought of her as cold and unfeeling, but she knew better than everyone else. She had seen the woman love, cry, laugh, and feel every other human emotion through their time of being friends.

Hermione felt Narcissa’s lips against her hair. “Cissa,” Hermione breathed out.

“Oh, look at us! We’re being silly; we have so much work to do. Your hair looks beautiful, don’t you think?” Narcissa quickly said and pulled away from her. Hermione watched her smooth out her dress robes and fix up her hair nonchalantly as if nothing had happened. Hermione turned towards the mirror on the vanity and admired her own hair. She thought Narcissa was a magician when it came to hair; she was always able to calm Hermione’s hair and make it look beautiful.

“You did it again, you’re officially the hair tamer of the century,” Hermione smiled at her and ran her fingers through her now silky curly hair.

She was amazed by Narcissa’s talent, she was a fierce woman who went after what she wanted, and she admired her for that. She also played her part well for society and their standards for her. Hermione knew that Narcissa still held prejudice’s towards Muggle-born people and even half-bloods. She had always wondered why Narcissa had chosen to talk to her that day as a child, much less invite her to shop with her.

It had been on Hermione’s mind through the years, but she never dare ask. She had been witness to her vicious streak and prejudice’s against half-bloods. She also knew of their strong dislike for what the family referred to as blood-traitors. However, in the presence of Hermione all of it was pushed aside and Narcissa never commented.

She knew of how her friend’s felt about this, and Harry and Ron had coaxed Narcissa into a fight time and time again. Lucius had started fights with them on his own; even while they were only twelve year’s old. Harry in retaliation once set their house elf, Dobby, free in their second year.

She had seen the distain that Narcissa had for those who were lower class, the Malfoy’s only had the best.  There was nothing that they couldn’t afford and Cissa prided herself on having the best, and then being able to flaunt it. She was sophisticated and witty and loved fiercely but to the world she showed a hard cold mask that every Lady Malfoy would show.


“Harry, I know you don’t like her. I’m not asking you to—don’t you think I know that they still hate Muggle-borns?” Hermione whispered fiercely to her twelve year old companion.

Harry and she were walking through the hallways, the Chamber of Secrets had been opened and now a monster was coming after all of the Muggle-borns in the school. Harry refused to let her walk anywhere a lone and she insisted on still doing research.

“I still believe Malfoy could be the Heir and you know it, He’s called you a Mudblood! He and his father are no different than Voldemort himself with their ideas. I know you like Mrs. Malfoy, but come on—what if it’s just a ruse,” Harry insisted.

“If she wanted me gone she could have done that long ago, you don’t know her like I do,” Hermione defended.

They walked through the halls until Hermione stopped in her tracks. The Malfoy family was there talking to Draco. The sneer on his face was evident when he turned his head to see Hermione and Harry standing in the hall.

“Well, isn’t this a surprise,” Lucius drawled.

“Yes, isn’t it? Still terrorizing house elves?” Harry retorted. Hermione elbowed him slightly but she couldn’t say much. Dobby was still under the Malfoy rule. She knew Harry had a plan to get him away but nothing could be done until they found out what was going on with the Chamber of Secrets.

“Yes, I’m making them do their job. Draco here tells me that there has been some commotion in the castle,” Lucius hissed. Hermione quickly stood in front of Harry and cleared her throat.

“It seems the Chamber of Secrets has been opened and something in it is going after all Muggle-borns,” Hermione replied coolly.

“Oh dear, I’m going to go speak to McGonagall. She cannot expect you to be walking around here,” Narcissa stepped in.

“I’m fine Narcissa, I’m actually doing research. It would appear whoever opened it did not know how to keep their hands clean,” Hermione replied. She kept her face up and was watching Lucius and Draco for any signs that they knew something and just as she had figured, nothing happened.

“Know anything about that Malfoy?” Harry asked the young boy.

“Why would I know anything about that Potter, just because you and your Mudblood are being targeted doesn’t mean I did anything,” Draco spat.

“Draco Lucius Malfoy,” Narcissa scolded.

“No need to worry, this—Mudblood is going to find the Heir of Slytherin. They’re going to be going to Azkaban to receive the kiss, so I’m sure the Dementors will be happy to have someone in their jail to terrorize,” Hermione stated.

Narcissa looked at her with concern and Lucius just scowled. “Don’t you think that is a bit too advanced dear?” Narcissa stated slowly.

“Mione here can do anything, She’s the only reason that your” –Harry looked to Lucius and narrowed his eyes—“coward is dead now; he isn’t coming back. She is the most advanced in magic here, and I hear she’s even ahead of your son,” Harry kept his eyes on Lucius the entire time.

“We have worked to do now, but It was a pleasure to see you again Cissa; I’ll owl you later,” Hermione smiled up at the older witch and took Harry by his cloak; she pulled him past the Malfoys and around the corner.


She couldn’t move or see, though she could feel her eyes open. Warm hands engulfed her cold one, and Hermione could feel her arm out stretched but nothing heavy in it anymore. She wondered where her hand mirror was; those beastly yellow eyes staring at her.

“Oh sweetie, I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry this happened. I know who did it and I can’t stop it. You don’t deserve this. I’ll try: oh, I’ll try harder,” she heard a small hoarse voice; it sounded like it was coming through a fog.


She was okay to move now, and the basilisk was defeated by Harry. Madam Pomfrey said she was going to be able to go to the ending ceremony, but unfortunately their ending tests were cancelled. She walked through the halls of the castle and when she arrived at the great hall she took a deep breath; she stood at the door and observed the hall.

Whispers went through the great hall and finally she located Harry and Ron in the crowd of Gryffindors. She took off in a full sprint towards them and pulled Harry in her arms, hugging him tight. She was home. Hermione pulled away and went to hug Ron, but quickly she pulled away and stuck her hand out instead for him to shake.

“It’s good to have you back,” Ron mumbled.

“It’s good to be back,” she smiled and looked around the room. Malfoy was smirking at her, and he tipped his head slightly before she turned her whole body and sat down in her seat. She knew it was his mother who had stayed at night in her hospital room.


Narcissa Malfoy’s presence commanded respect and her last name struck fear into wizard’s and witch’s hearts. Although, behind closed doors, she used to play with her child on the floor in the ballroom and bake at her leisure. She baked cakes and any other pastry that she found a recipe for; she once made Hermione’s birthday cake. She couldn’t cook a proper meal to save her life but she could out bake even the best in England.

She had quirks, like any other person, that Hermione noticed right away. She would never eat before her husband and on days that it rained she would clutch the locket that was around her neck tighter than anything else. The locket stayed inside of her dress robes and only was placed on top during special occasions.

“Now, before we get brewing, what questions do you have? I know you were at the Weasleys yesterday and I find myself believing that they most likely gave you the wrong information at some point,” Narcissa scoffed and sat down on a stool near the vanity.

Hermione scrunched up her face thinking, there wasn’t anything that she really needed to know exact she didn’t understand the history of the Goddess. “I don’t understand Avalon or this whole Mother Goddess thing,” Hermione admitted.

“I figured. Now, long ago we, as a people, were related to Avalon. Merlin being one of the first few wizards and he was partners with Viviane. Are you familiar with the Arthurian legend?” Narcissa questioned before she went any further.

“Yes, It’s actually my favorite,” Hermione confessed.

“Well, then you should be aware of Avalon because that’s where Excalibur came from or…” Narcissa smirked and waited for Hermione’s face to change into a knowing realization.

Hermione spoke slowly, “the sword of Gryffindor, it comes to us who are in need; that makes no sense though. The sword of Gryffindor was made from the Goblin King only a thousand years ago, but King Arthur—”

Narcissa finished for her, “—died around the early 500’s and the sword went back to Avalon. The material was given to the Goblin King as a sign of good faith and the Lady of the Lake knew that Godric Gryffindor was looking to have a sword made. The fact that your friend—Mr. Potter, used it to kill a Basilisk only made it stronger,” Narcissa said slowly.

“That’s why it appears to people in need, and only a true Gryffindor may hold the sword. It’s just like Arthur being the only one to hold Excalibur,” Hermione said slowly. Everything was slowly coming together for her.

“No one told you that bit, but I’d imagine that they would all be so proud that Gryffindor has the sword that was given to Arthur by Merlin and Avalon. Instead, it seems to be buried under all of that so called courage. Now, the Mother Goddess is much like the Muggle Mother Nature, or at least that’s what Muggles now call her. She is the reason everything exists on this earth, but they replaced her with that Christian god; it’s quite distasteful if you ask me. However, she has shown her face as the Mother Mary in that religion. We will never be without her in any religion because she simply takes different forms and adapt,” Narcissa replied.

“She’s responsible for everything, so she’s the original god.  If she’s so powerful why not just show that she is the only goddess?” Hermione questioned.

“Good question, but she is not all powerful; she does have some power though. She is not here to be a god but to keep everything in balance. She balances good and evil, death and rebirth. She is known to be associated with the predator and the prey; wolf and stag, respectively. Without her we would be desensitized to the chaos that would ensue,” Narcissa smiled and crossed her legs elegantly.

“She’s not here to play god but to make sure our lives are balanced, so that one thing does not happen more than the other. She’s friends with both life and death and what about the Lady of the Lake?” Hermione was now fascinated by this; learning was truly her calling. Something she had once been so familiar with, learning about King Arthur, was now part of her actual life.

“There is still a lady of the lake; she’s High Priestess of Avalon and she will be at the party to oversee the new initiates. She normally comes around every five years or so, but just to make sure things are kept her way; her ward comes every year.

“Now, the Horned God is her lover and he proves himself to be a worthy man. The Goddess taking him to her bed doesn’t make him a man, but what he does before that is what proves his masculinity. It is not some reward that he gets to lay with her, but a privilege,” Narcissa said the last part curtly.

Hermione had moved her body so that she was now facing Narcissa fully and was leaning towards her. Her elbows resting on her knee’s as she kept her head in the palms of her hands. “Our magic comes from Merlin and Avalon, so we celebrate its creator?” Hermione asked.

“Our magic is the product of Merlin’s love for a woman. She died in his arms out on the lake and because of the magic that had been sitting in her blood, their love activated it, she became the first Lady of the Lake and the Goddess formed Avalon. As a result, the first lady of Avalon, his lover, gave Merlin the gift of magic and to repay the Lady of Avalon, we celebrate,” Narcissa concluded and smiled. Hermione was fascinated and her eyes were wide.

“That’s beautiful; oh my…“Hermione now understood why Harry had his scar on his forehead. His mother’s love for him, it was something stronger than Voldemort could ever know. She feared him coming back, but she knew that love could win anything. After all, it was the creator of all magic. She went quiet for a few moments and let her mind drift to everything.

Love was the reason Harry said he was able to get away from death eaters in their fourth year. He had gone into the triwizard tournament. They wanted his blood to bring back Voldemort but his quick escape due to his parent’s souls coming back, or so he claimed, but now she knew the truth. They had given their love even in death.

It made more sense to her why the death eaters wanted his blood now, and how he had been escaping from them at every turn. In her heart she feared that love may never be enough to keep him safe for long, especially now that the Death Eaters had been without their leader for so long.

“What is the garment that I’m supposed to wear?” Hermione asked Narcissa.

“Oh, that? It’s more of a bonding between a parent and child, and for women I am to make you a morning and night dress. It’s something to show our connection and bond. You then wear it every year after, it shows your roots and where you come from. Many do not hand make the morning dress like they used to but we’re Malfoys, and as far as I am concerned you’re under my Matriarchy for this, so you shall dress like one,” Narcissa said.

“Oh, well I guess that make sense then,” Hermione said and shifted in her seat.

“As soon as I get your measurements when we get the material you’ll see it’ll all work out nicely,” Narcissa said before promptly standing up and calling for Mitzi. Hermione then turned and looked at herself again in the mirror again to admire her hair. She also admired the brush that Narcissa had, it was silver and vintage; it was beautiful.

With a pop the elf had come back into the room with a large table with a few cauldrons and all off the ingredients. Hermione stood up and walked over to the table; she started to sort through the ingredients.

“Now, I’m going to show you how to brew this and what the ingredients are used for,” Narcissa said and rolled up her sleeves before pulling one of the taller cauldrons over to her side.

“Hand me the Dragon’s blood; that’s just a combining agent and a base. Along with the rose water please, that is to keep it smelling lovely and it’s just darling to bathe in,” Narcissa said and held out her hand. Hermione handed her both ingredients and watched as they went into the cauldron.

“Do we really have to put in ashwinder eggs? That’s an ingredient to Amortentia?” Hermione said concerned.

“It only gives off an amazing aroma, dear; I assure you that no one will fall in false love with you. It gives you amazing skin though and a lovely glow. You would look radiant with a bit of it in this potion,” Narcissa promised.

“Alright,” Hermione trusted her and hesitantly handed over two ashwinder eggs. She watched as Narcissa dropped the two frozen eggs inside the cauldron and it started to turn from a violent red to an orange. It almost looked as if it had caught fire.

“Hand the powdered moonstone and unicorn tears please. The moonstone is for the powers that moon has over magic and the unicorn tears for purity. They’re normally associated with virgins and your skin is fairly pale so it’ll give a little colour to your cheeks,” Narcissa commented and sprinkled in the moonstone and put in two drops of unicorn tears.

“How long does this have to brew?” Hermione questioned. She had never heard about this specific potion in a textbook, but then again she assumed it was part of the unwritten rule not to document anything.

“Only a week, so it’ll be done before Beltane. However the longer we let it sit the more effective it is, this is just to attract your stag. It only will affect one man there. Most women, at least women who know what they are doing, will be wearing this and it will only affect one man. He’s your destined Beltane stag. They will even be attracted to you during the day time, but are not allowed to show more interest in you until after the masks are on at night fall,” Narcissa revealed.

“Oh, wow, so they can’t even go ‘I like your perfume’ then,” Hermione thought that the whole holiday was so elaborate.

“Precisely, it’s supposed to be secretive. We have been allowed to evolve past that past by no masks during the day, but we have to have more composure. You’ll learn to like it, but now it’s time for the Lavender flowers. This is symbolizing your devotion to the Goddess and your stag’s new devotion to you. Oh, and grab the peppermint. Your skin will feel fresher with it,” Narcissa said motioning towards the two containers in front of her. Hermione lifted them up and examined them before she gave the lavender flower container to Narcissa, and then she smelled the peppermint one experimentally.

“Are you sure you are not in the beauty industry?” Hermione teased.

“I am sure. Lastly the rose petals and morning dew,” Narcissa gave the rose petals to Hermione and put one drop of morning dew in.

“How many do I put in?” Hermione asked.

“Nine of them,” Hermione heard and she dropped a rose petal one at a time until all nine were inside. The potion started to swirl on its own and she watched as it changed from a bright pink to a Slytherin Green and then Gryffindor Red and settled there, bubbling occasionally.

“Perfect!” Narcissa cried and stirred it a few times before putting the lid on top of it to allow it to simmer.

“So we let it simmer and merry for a week,” Hermione stated and stretched. She never would have thought learning something would become so tiring.

Narcissa took Hermione’s hand and pulled her over to the couch that was in her study and cleared her throat, “Now dear, I know this is a tradition for pure-bloods for their coming of age, normally they are virgins. May I ask if you are?” Narcissa asked delicately.

Hermione’s face heated up and she nodded her head, “Ginny and I talked about this. I’m aware of what it is,” Hermione said quickly. She didn’t know how she felt about talking about that with her. They were close but they had never had a conversation like that. When she went through puberty she had Narcissa and McGonagall’s help with things but they didn’t speak of that. She couldn’t believe that she was talking to Draco Malfoy’s mum about her virginity status.

“Good, that’s good you have someone to talk to. Now you know if you have any questions about this, you can ask me. I know you’re old enough though to know things, I may be older, but I remember when I was your age,” she laughed lightly. Her laugh was like small bells to Hermione. “Are you comfortable going through with this tradition?” Narcissa questioned.

Hermione sat there for a few moments, was she really okay? “Hogwarts has always been my home, and I never felt at home in the muggle world. I was different and I was an outcast. I don’t want to be an outcast here. I want to do things that I would have done if I was born here. This is my home, and these are my people; this is my tradition now,” She said decidedly and she meant it. She felt that meaning to the core of her bones even.

“Then it’s settled. We should go grab the boys for dinner. I’m sure they’re famished and Lucius is probably driving Draco mad with training in the rain,” Narcissa laughed and they both walked through the manor; out towards the gardens. How Narcissa had managed to keep her gardens spotless was beyond Hermione. Narcissa didn’t use magic to maintain them or gardeners; she told Hermione she felt it relaxed her and did them all by hand.

The women stood in the doorway of the sunroom, it lead off of the porch to the Malfoy’s back yard where the men were practicing. Lucius was having Malfoy practice in the rain, his bow never faltered and she watched him hit his target three times. It was a bull’s-eye all three times and she felt uncomfortable invading their privacy.

“Boys! It’s time to come in for dinner, Mitzi and the others are making your favorite Lucius, so give your son a break,” Narcissa called out through the doorway. Both of them dropped their weapons and straightened up before walking into the house. They dragged mud and the dampness through the sun room; Hermione stifled a laugh when Narcissa smacked them both on the arms.

“What now, Cissa? Did you expect a drying spell out in the rain?” Lucius quipped.

“No, but you could have manners not to come all the way in. Now our carpet is dirty,” She clicked her tongue and Hermione watched her stare at the floor in concentration.

“Mother, its fine because we do have help, or has Granger here persuaded you otherwise?” Malfoy asked. He performed a quick drying spell and Hermione rolled her eyes at him; he was still a stubborn prat.

“I know we have house elves, but still it was an antique and I don’t know if magic can even get out some of these stains,” she chided and kissed her son’s head before shooing both her husband and son towards the small table in the sun room. It was just big enough for five or so people. Narcissa and Hermione often took tea in the sunroom when no one was home and they had no place to be, she would have the house elves open the windows and the breeze would come in with the fresh smell of flowers. They all sat down, but Hermione begrudgingly had to sit next to Draco.

“Now, how have things been going my love?” Narcissa directed the conversation to Draco while the house elves started to serve dinner. Hermione lowly whispered a small thank you to each of them which made all of them smile and reply with a pipsqueak ‘you’re welcome’. It made her smile and she listened in on the Malfoy’s conversations like she always did.

She rarely had anything to contribute, but they mostly talked about their social elite group. She did always get the gossip that Narcissa and Lucius had to share, but that never was anything she would normally bother with. Most of the times she would end up going home to tell Ginny all about it so they could make fun of the social elite on their own terms.

“So Ms. Granger, do you have any traditions such as Beltane in the—Muggle culture?” He questioned lightly. She took a quick sip of her tea and put it down then looked at the other two Malfoys. Draco looked utterly bored and Narcissa was more than interested like always.

“Oh, well I guess you could relate it to Muggle prom in um— some aspects. Muggles get all dressed up and they go dancing to celebrate the end of their schooling—it’s a lot like the Yule Ball. Then they normally have certain traditions, but instead of the woods; it’s the car,” Hermione bit her lip and quickly took a sip of her tea again.

“The car? How atrocious, who would even…” Narcissa said appalled. Draco was laughing and had to put down his drink at his mother’s reaction, Hermione didn’t know if he was choking or laughing.

“What do you mean Cissa, if I do recall during Hogwarts there were certain wonderful things that happened in carriages…“ Lucius said.

“Lucius don’t bring that up during dinner,” Narcissa hissed.

“Okay, no more talking about your love life, some of us are eating,” Draco groaned and covered his face with one hand.

“I think it’s lovely that your parent’s are still very much in love. Many aren’t so fortunate to have found a friend that they can still feel the same thing with,” Hermione replied. She genuinely believed that it was sweet despite the fact that Lucius was about as cuddly as a venomous snake.

“See, you’re lucky Draco,” Narcissa insisted, “Now it’s like this Muggle prom you say?”

Hermione nodded her head and wiped her mouth, “well yes, I mean the whole thing caught me off guard, I’ve never read about it anywhere.”

“You always had your nose in a book so that surprises me Granger, I’m sure there are plenty of them out there, that refer to the holiday. You always had your nose in a book, and I swear if it wasn’t for you reading the potions books in advance and actually knowing what you were doing you would have given Snape a heart attack,” Malfoy commented.

“I did not always have my nose in a book thank you very much, I was just always busy, you don’t understand how hard it is to always be the one who thinks of the plans and get their homework done on time,” Hermione said.

“No, I strictly remember you always being in the library when you weren’t with Potter and Weaslebee. You would go into the corner of the room and make some nest like thing filled with just you and books, and then sit there for hours doing your homework,” Malfoy told her. Hermione’s eyebrows rose and shock overcame her face.

“You remember what I did in the library?” Hermione didn’t have an argumentative tone now but rather one with fascination.

Malfoy looked flustered for a moment and glared at her quickly, “you called me beautiful, were even,” he said coolly and looked away from her.

“You two bicker more than your father and I do Draco,” Narcissa sighed.

“We don’t bicker,” both of them said at the same time.

“Cissa, when do they not? It’s best to ignore them or get ear plugs. I’m not sure why we should have to listen to them arguing over nothing,” Lucius drawled.

“Well get used to it, because I’m making Hermione stay here until Beltane is over. She should have all of the experiences of the other girls,” Narcissa said with authority.

“Is that so?” Lucius looked over at his wife quickly. Hermione didn’t know if she wanted to stay here because she would end up fighting with Draco every day, and even though Lucius was now cordial with her they still got into small fights.

“Yes, she is; right dear?” Narcissa cocked one of her perfectly shaped eyebrows and looked at Hermione for confirmation.

“If it pleases you Cissa,” She mumbled.

“I cannot hear you,” Narcissa smiled.

“If it pleases you,” Hermione said louder and fiddled with her scarf that hung loosely around her neck. She was going to be in for a long few weeks.

“Wonderful, absolutely wonderful,” Draco said sarcastically.

“You know, you two should be more appreciative of this circumstance. How many can say that they are able to help with Beltane? Even if it means you two are in the same house. You know Lucius and I conceived Draco on Beltane, so it may be why he’s so emotional sometimes; he’s my sweet merry-begot,” she smiled at him and reached over the table to flip some of his hair from his eyes.

“That is way more than I needed to know, ever,” Draco shuddered.

“Yes, he is rather emotional,” Hermione teased, “what is a merry-begot?” Hermione asked.

“It means a child of the gods, it’s a term for all children who are conceived during Beltane,” Lucius answered her this time.

“There you go Granger, you always think I’m so pompous but really it’s true. I’m the Goddess’s gift to the world,” he smirked.

“You may be a child of the gods but you’re still a pompous arse,” Hermione smiled.

“—and now you’re the know-it-all who doesn’t know it all,” Draco replied.

“After this I will still know it all because now I know about Beltane, and any other lame come backs you’d like to come up with? I’m supposed to be in bed at a certain time, but I can open up my schedule,” Hermione replied with the smile still on her face.

If there was one thing she didn’t miss, was having to deal with him for most of the day. Although, she did enjoy arguing with him to a point; she couldn’t ever argue with Harry or Ron the way she could with Malfoy. He was intelligent, second in the class to her, and it kept her on her toes and helped her grow because it forced her to improve her argument.

“Enough you two, it’s like reprimanding children,” Lucius said massaging his temple.

Hermione smirked and stuck her tongue out at Draco who sat up in his chair in shock and motioned to his mother and father.

“Didn’t see a thing,” Narcissa teased.

“So you two met during Beltane?” Hermione asked; changing the subject.

“We had an arranged marriage, but we knew each other during Hogwarts and we were not each other’s biggest fans. I was dealing with my sister’s marriage to Rudolphus and her—well her erratic behavior and Lucius was quick to remind me it was not my place because of our blood status. Family meant and mean’s everything to me so I actually hexed him. Our years at Hogwarts weren’t as spectacular after that knowing that we would have to get married. Although, we did have a few run-ins at the um,” Narcissa this time blushed and Hermione thought it was sweet.

“The dances, and then during Beltane we found each other through the crowd and as they say the rest is history,” Lucius smirked and Narcissa leaned over to kiss her husband’s cheek. Hermione saw their hands intertwine with each other’s on the table.

“Are the Weasley’s story like yours,” Hermione asked fascinated.

“Oh, this is a story,” Lucius chuckled.

“Oh, well let’s all retire to the drawing room. It really is a story, and one that we are not allowed to share lightly,” Narcissa grimaced and stood up from her seat. Draco only groaned and got up with everyone else who walked the short distance to the drawing room.

Hermione sat on the love seat in the room while Lucius sat at his chair near the fire, his two hound’s one on either side. They were guard dogs of the Manor; Narcissa told me that he named them Brutus and Creaser. They only answered to him and rarely took a second glance at anyone else. Draco took up residence on the couch and Narcissa sat near her husband.

“Now, the Weasley’s are, as much as it pains me to say it, a pure blood family. She and Arthur met during their years at Hogwarts and they did fall in love. They were then arranged to be married, you see Arthur’s mother was a Black so unfortunately they are distant, very distant, relatives. Much like your lovely Potter,” Narcissa spoke calmly.

“You make it seem that it was so bad,” Hermione laughed.

“They did not end up together on Beltane night, their eldest Bill is a merry-begot. They both knew of it and married quickly right after, so no one would question them. No one speaks of it and he has inherited the Weasley red hair so no one suspected. However he has not shown up on our tree, indicating he has no black blood flowing through him. We do not speak of it, out of common courtesy though,” Narcissa said quickly.

“Oh, do the others know?” Hermione didn’t know what to make of that, that seemed horrible to know that one of your children are not yours.

“No, and it must remain that way. Bill himself does not know that Arthur is not really his father,” Narcissa told her calmly.

“At least they love each other; they are good people, as much as I know you aren’t fond of them. They’re all good people and I’m glad that even you won’t berate them for that. Thank you,” Hermione said slowly.

“We may not like them but it is impolite,” Lucius replied. He was swirling firewhiskey in his jar. Hermione loved the Weasley’s like her own family, she may not like Molly’s match making skills but she was like her own mother.

After Arthur was attacked fifth year she was frantic to make sure he was okay and they had spent Christmas together with him along with his birthday. Arthur got better as the weeks went on and Percy was nothing but a prat the whole time. He had been guarding the hall of prophecy’s to which they battled at later.

She remembered seeing Lucius there and he had been disarmed by Sirius and then Bellatrix had killed Harry’s godfather. Hermione had run after Harry when he went after Bellatrix. It was the first time she saw Harry use an unforgiveable, but soon he was on the ground himself withering in pain yelling about Voldemort. Bellatrix had gotten away with nothing but a scratch.


Hermione looked around at the sound and both of the Malfoy men groaned together, Lucius got up slowly while Draco stayed on the couch but sat up.

“Time to go,” Lucius grabbed Draco by the back of his shirt and dragged him out of the room; Draco was complaining the entire time that he shouldn’t be man handling him like that.

Lucius turned around and closed the drawing room doors slowly, “time for the hunt,” He said cryptically and slammed the doors shut, the candles in the room flickering and lightening striking the house.

Narcissa and Hermione shared a look, both confused.

“Boys,” Narcissa stated simply.

Narcissa then retired for the night and left Hermione free to use their library; she often stayed most of her nights there and always woke up with a blanket and a book on top of her. They didn’t mind and she didn’t seem to mind sleeping in the old chair that they kept in there.

She needed to read up on Avalon and quench her thirst for knowledge.

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