The Darkness and the Light
A/N: As you may already know, this story was originally supposed to end at chapter 10. I want to thank all of you who have r/r wanting more. Because of that, I have given it to you and found that is so much more that I can do with this story. I’m having as much fun writing it as you seem to be reading it. It’s because of what you say that I continue to write, so thank you again for making this story so popular and telling me what you want as far as it is concerned.
“Lucius?” Narcissa ventured a third time as she took an uneasy step towards him. She knew her husband all to well. Well enough to know that even though he appeared to have vented his anger upon his study, it didn’t mean that he was calm.
“Leave me be, Narcissa,” Lucius warned; keeping his back to his wife and placing the picture of Draco on the now bare mantel of the fireplace.
“No,” she said softly as she shook her head. “Lucius, where have you been? Why have you not been to visit your son?”
“Brainless woman,” he muttered under his breath. “I’ve seen my son.”
Narcissa didn’t dare make her husband think that she didn’t believe him, upon taking a few steps closer; she realized that he smelled strongly of Firewhiskey. When he was angry was one thing, when he was angry and drunk, that was quite another. Rather than try approach Lucius a little more, Narcissa backed away.
“I have,” he slurred, nodding. “Just because you haven’t seen me, doesn’t mean that I haven’t been there. He’s my son, for Merlin’s sake, how could you accuse me of not going go see him?”
“It’s just that the Healers have been looking for you, Lucius,” she began slowly. She looked down and found that she had absentmindedly begun wringing her hands; she was much more timid around him when he was like this. He couldn’t control himself when he was drunk.
“They have?” He grunted, his drunken state allowing him to show little to no interest.
“If you’ve seen Draco, then you know something of the shape he’s in. He doesn’t look good, Lucius. His heart just stops sometimes and they have to restart it again.” Narcissa shook her head somewhat warily when she thought of this. She opened her mouth to say more, to tell her husband that they had to use Muggle practices to revive him, but she stopped herself.
She knew all too well what the man before her thought of Muggles. Telling him, she reasoned, might do some good because once he learned this, he would be more apt to come out and tell either her or the Healers who had done this to Draco. On the other hand, mentioning Muggles to him when he was drunk might indeed prove to make matters worse.
The trio had lunch after Potions and Hermione was determined to talk to Ron while he ate, but when he just sat there with a worried look on his face while he watched Harry and her eat, she thought it best to leave him to his own devices.
Lunch was rather uneventful and much to their surprise, the news of Draco did not appear to have reached their classmates ears. Not yet, anyway. Pansy Parkinson had something of a knack for running her mouth and it was just a matter of time.
After lunch, they mulled through Divination and once class was over for the day, Hermione caught up with Ron and said nothing to him; she simply took his hand in hers and led him towards the common room with Harry in tow.
Once they were settled in a tight circle on the floor by the fireplace in the back of the room, being sure that no one would overhear them, Hermione spoke:
“Ron, please, you can’t let this eat you up. What did you hit him with?”
Ron lifted his blue eyes from his lap and looked from Harry to Hermione, who was staring back at him, secretly preparing herself for the worst.
“It’s sort of like The Killing Curse,” he began and his friends’ mouths dropped open. “With a bit
of the Cruciatus Curse thrown in.”
Harry let out a low whistle. He couldn’t believe what he was hearing.
“Ron,” Hermione struggled to keep her voice from jumping into a lecture. She wanted to be there for Ron, not yell at him. “Where did you learn something like that?”
“I was waiting for you to finish up in the library one day and I just happened to wander into the Restricted section when no one was looking. I picked up a book that was lying on a table nearby and leafed through it. It caught my eye. I didn’t think…” he explained and then hung his head defeatedly. What he said next, made both Harry and Hermione stare back at him in amazement. “I thought you’d be proud of me, ‘Mione.”
She glared incredulously back at him, still struggling with her voice. “Proud of you? Where would you get that?”
“I read a book!” He told her as he flashed her one of those classic, lopsided Weasley grins that she couldn’t help but smile back at.
Narcissa had to take her chance, Draco was depending on her. She finally mustered the courage to walk towards her husband and then gently turn him to face her.
“Lucius,” she took in a deep breath and let it out to ready herself, “they’re having to resort to Muggle treatment to keep Draco alive. They don’t know what else to do; they don’t know what magic he was hit with.” She didn’t fight the tears that were threatening to come to the corners of her eyes. “They’re trying to find you because they want to ask if you know who did this to him.”
“I know who did this to him!” Lucius roared as he jerked away from his wife and turned his back to her once more, this time looking out the large window that overlooked the spacious grounds of Malfoy Manor. “It was Harry Potter and his friends!”
“Are you sure?”
“Who else could it be, Narcissa? Think! I was there when they were rescuing that Muggle trash,” his voice dripped venom, “they Disarmed and bound me with ropes.” He brought a small silver canteen from the pocket of his robes, opened it and brought it to his lips. Narcissa could only assume that it was more Firewhiskey. Or something stronger. “They think they’re so clever,” he stated as he took a long drink.
“Lucius, let it go. They were rescuing their friend. They’re only kids after all.”
“There was nothing childish about his reasons for dragging a Mudblood into the Manor, Narcissa!” Lucius yelled. “There was nothing childish about how the four of them fought and it sure as hell is not childishness that has Draco lying in St. Mungos!”
Rather than try and reason with him, Narcissa put his words aside. He was right. Deep down, she knew he was. Any other mother would condemn her son for what he did because it was wrong, but not Narcissa. Lucius was hard on him as it was and she never wanted to make it worse for Draco. Sometimes she had a tendency to overlook things her baby boy did, other times she would recognize them but act as though it were no big deal. More often than not, Lucius faulted her for this and took the opportunity to tell her that she was a horrible mother.
Such a horrible mother, she smirked inwardly, that I have seen that boy through more than he has. I have been there to pick him up when you’ve knocked him down.
After a moment of deafening silence, Narcissa broke it by saying: “You do whatever you feel you have to do, Lucius. I’m going back to our son.” She said this next part rather coldly: “He needs me. He needs you. You have the key to saving his life.”
She waited for a reply and when there was none, she hung her head and Apparated back to St. Mungos.
Upon Narcissa’s abrupt arrival, she found the Healer that she had been talking to taking Draco’s vital signs. As far as she could tell, there was no change in her son. He looked the same as she had when she left and when she thought about the conversation she had with Lucius just one hour before, her heart broke. She had no idea what her husband was going to do and that scared her. If he went off attacking those kids, the world would surely end.
The Healer took notice of her presence and left Draco’s side to speak with her.
“Did you find your husband, Mrs. Malfoy?” The woman asked.
Narcissa nodded, only doing so because she knew if she spoke, her voice would waver and she would defiantly cry.
“Any luck?” She had a note of hope in her voice.
Mrs. Malfoy didn’t want to go into detail and explain that he had been drinking, that he was not only drunk, but hell bent on revenge. She didn’t want to say that she didn’t know if he would just confront the kids and bring them to the hospital-she did know. The truth was, there was no doubt in her mind that her husband wouldn’t confront the kids. If he did, he would not do it reasonably for she was not married to a reasonable man. She knew this all to well.
All she offered to the Healer was a small shrug and a nod as she crossed over to Draco and took his hand in hers. Her eyes never left Draco’s pallid face as she lovingly ran a few fingers through his hair.
“Can I ask you something?” Narcissa had finally mustered the courage to speak and was a little surprised that her voice wasn’t trembling anywhere near as much as she had expected.
“When my son come out of this…”
The Healer’s attitude seemed to be wavering. “If,” she corrected, “if, Mrs. Malfoy. It’s time to start being realistic.”
She ignored this. Her son was a fighter. “When he comes out of this, how will his brain be affected? How is it now?”
The other woman merely blinked back at her, apparently astonished that she knew anything about the human body. Astonished that she knew and understood that they were dealing with something Muggle-related in terms of Draco’s situation. There was not a potion that could fix this. Not that they were aware of.
“Actually, Mrs. Malfoy, it’s the most curious thing,” she began slowly. “With Draco’s heart stopping as it has been, I would expect that there would already be a fair amount of damage. When the heart shuts down, the brain just follows suit. It’s a mechanism that our bodies have.
Your son is very special, Mrs. Malfoy. His brain seems to have stayed strong through this whole ordeal. Working overtime, in some instances.”
The weight of the world was on her shoulders, but when she was told that, she felt them go a little light. It was the best thing she had heard in two weeks. She brushed back a few strands of hair that had fallen onto his forehead.
“My baby,” she murmured as she kissed his temple, “I wish you were here. I wish I could see your thoughts so I could find out who did this to you.”
Draco Malfoy looked around him and saw nothing but total blackness. He stood up from the black leather upholstered chair that he had been sitting in and was taken aback when he took a few steps forward and discovered that wherever he was, his footsteps echoed.
Odd, he thought to himself, it’s black all around, but I can still see. Where am I?
This didn’t matter anymore when he saw a boy bound in ropes just a few feet ahead of him. Not just any boy, this was that lousy excuse for a Pureblood that Harry Potter was friends with.
Draco sauntered up to him until he was close enough to touch and when saw how scared he was and how he couldn’t stop whimpering, he out an evil chuckle.
“What’re you gonna do now, Weaselby? Where’s your Mudblood girlfriend when you need her? What do you want to bet that she’s off shagging your boy Potter?” He laughed again and when he saw the look of disgust on Ron’s face, it only added to his joy. “Listen to me. I said ‘bet’ to a Weasley. It’s a little hard to do when you’re poor, isn’t it?”
Ron struggled against his confines but was finding that he was having little to no luck.
“Just wait, Malfoy,” he warned. “I’ll get out of here, I’ll get my wand and you’ll be sorry.”
“Your what?” Malfoy sneered and then smirked. “Your wand? Oh, you mean this?” He reached into the pocket of his robes and brought out Ron’s wand. Ron stared back at it, helpless. Draco saw his opportunity to taunt Ron, to tease him and that was exactly what he did. He dangled the wand in front of Ron’s face in the manner that one would dangle food in front of a starving man. “I don’t think I should. Seems as though you’re a bit dangerous with magic, eh, Weaselby? Why, I would dare say that your Dad is at the Ministry right now defending every reason why you should have your wand and your powers revoked.”
Ron ignored this and struggled once more. “I’ll make you pay for this,” he growled.
“Oh, no, no, no,” Draco tutted. “That isn’t how it goes. See, you’re on my turf now. I say who wins and who doesn’t.” He said these next words without even considering how strange they sounded. He didn’t know how he suddenly had this knowledge, but he did. “This is my reality. Not yours.”
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