"Lean on me, when you're not strong, and I'll be your friend, I'll help you carry on, for it won't be long, 'til I'm going to need somebody to lean on."
-Ben E. King "Lean On Me"
December 24th, 1981
Narcissa blinked. She laid in bed, listening for a sound, that sound. She listened intently, waiting to hear that noise her husband tried to prevent every year.
CRASH! CRACK! BANG! tick. tick. tick. BOOM!
There it was! Lucius had done it again! She then heard him cursing himself,
"Dammit! Ah, bloody hell! Little son of a..." and the rambling continued.
Narcissa smirked and shook her head, rolling out of bed and walking down to her kitchen.
"Why can't I ever move that damn cake?!" Lucius muttered aloud, pointing his wand at the cake splattered everywhere.
"Because you are Lucius Marcus Malfoy, and you simply cannot handle an exploding cake, m'dear," a silky voice said from behind.
"Ah, and that's exactly why I made a second one! Hun, would you be a doll and put the cake somewhere where Draco can't get it. And I need to talk to you in the Dining Room."
He then began to sing lightly, "I said I'm sorry Cissa...I never meant to hurt you...I never meant to make you cry but tonight, I'm cleanin' out my closet..."
Narcissa, who had been smiling and happy, immediately stopped moving, frozen in place. That song. They always used that song as a code when it came to dangerous or deadly news. She quickly hid the cake and walked into the Dining Room, looking at her husband. His face and apron were covered in soot, cake, and icing from the explosion. He had taken the apron off and had thrown it at a chair, his face in his sooty hands. Narcissa's stomach dropped.
'It must be really horrible news,' she thought.
"Narcissa, come. Please," Lucius said softly, lifting his face from his hands and looking at her.
She walked over and sat in the chair next to him. He lifted his hand and rubbed her face gently, spreading the soot from his hands to her face. She looked in his eyes and saw an unbearable sadness with little tears poking their way from the corners of his eyes.
"Lucius, what's wrong? Tell me. It's not about Draco, is it?"
Lucius shook his head.
"No, but it may hurt out family forever. See. It goes against everything we stand for. Honey, please don't be angry with me. I'm just following orders..." he tried to explain.
"Lucius, whatever it is, we'll get through. Did they ask you to help the Aurors? You don't have to do anything with that lunatic Vol...vol-Voldi-whatever, right? The one who killed the Potter's back in '78?"
Lucius remained silent, opting to stare at their clasped hands. Narcissa gulped and clamped her hand tighter around her husband's.
"This is about him, isn't it? Him and those damn murdering minions of his! Tell me! What does your job have to do with him?!"
Narcissa was close to yelling now. Lucius was beginning to lose control of his emotions and set his head down on the table. His shoulders began to shake as he cried into the table. He felt like a failure to his family by putting them in so much danger.
Lucius mumbled into the table through his sobs of anguish, defeat, failure, hurt, and also out of anger. Anger towards his boss. Anger towards the Aurors. Anger towards the murderer he had to interact with.
"I can't hear you!" Narcissa yelled.
Through their talking, neither parent noticed that their son had come downstairs for his annual birthday breakfast and found nothing. He heard talking and crying in the Dining Room and went to see who it was. He saw his parents sitting at the table and hid in the corner to hear what they were saying.
Meanwhile, in the Dining Room, Lucius brought his head up quickly at his wife's yell. His reddened eyes from crying had not obscured his anger.
"They want me to join the damn Death Eaters, alright?! They want me to become one of those murdering minions to spy on Voldi-such and such and get enough information to bring him down!" Lucius had snapped.
He ripped his hand from Narcissa's and stood from his chair, putting a hand to his forehead and pacing. Narcissa was frozen once more, tears springing to her eyes. She watched her husband pacing and trying to hold back more tears while looking for something to take his anger out on.
'How could he do this!? It goes against everything we were raised upon! We weren't raised like this! How could he join Voldi?! Especially after what he did to those poor Potter's! Oh my god! What about the children?!' Narcissa thought.
Narcissa's eyes widened and she put a hand to her lips as she gasped. Lucius turned quickly, wondering what she was thinking.
"This puts everyone in danger. Even the kids!" Narcissa exclaimed, both of her hands covering her mouth now.
"Really, Narcissa?! I hadn't thought of that! Our children aren't old enough to defend themselves, Nar! What're we going to do to protect them?!"
"You don't know?! It should've been the first thing you thought of! It's the simplest solution!"
"Well telling me might SAVE OUR FAMILY!"
"Don't do it! Don't take the job! We can't risk our lives for that bastard! I won't put my family in danger!"
"Narcissa, I can't not take the job! I have to! The entire department has to!"
"WHAT?! They're risking twenty lives to try and kill some maniac?! They've got thousands of Aurors they can use! Why are they using the Unspeakables to bring down this idiot!?"
Even though Lucius was an Unspeakable, and he had never told Narcissa an assignment before, he had to tell her this. Even his boss had to become a Death Eater, and had told the entire department that they were allowed to tell their families. Even if he wasn't allowed he would have.
"I don't know. I was told the Aurors are needed to handle all the other evil. They need stronger people to fight this guy. They think he might be more powerful than we all think."
"No, that Potter kid is stronger than we all think. He did the unbelieveable."
"Look, Nar. We have to tell the kids. They're going to know eventually."
"Mummy? Daddy? What's a dead eater?" Draco, who had been listening for quite a while, asked his parents.
They turned to him in shock. How much had he heard?
"Draco, darling. Come to Mummy," Narcissa told her son.
He ran to her and she set him on her lap. Lucius, unable to handle putting his youngest child in danger, leaned against the wall, about twenty feet from his wife and his little boy.
"Honey, how much did you hear of what Mummy and Daddy were talking about?" Narcissa asked her son gently.
"I heard that Daddy was going to be a dead eater and that we might be in danger and that Brigit and Celeste and Eric and me might be in trouble too. Who's Voldi?"
Lucius turned around and walked to the chair he had been in previously and sat down, facing his son.
"Listen to me, Draco. Voldi is a bad person. And so are his dead eaters..."
"But, Daddy! You're not a bad person! And you're going to be a dead eater!"
"I know, Draco, I know. But Daddy's job says that Daddy...I have to be a dead eater. I'm not like these people. These dead eaters are mean and hurt people. They aren't nice to anyone at anytime, and I don't want you near them when I'm not around, do you understand?"
Draco nodded, "Can I have my breakfast now? I'm hungry!"
Lucius and Narcissa laughed.
"Yes, honey. Mummy will make breakfast. You stay here. Happy birthday my little dragon," Narcissa said and kissed her son's forehead.
She lifted him up and set him on her chair, heading into the kitchen.
"Draco. Do you want your present from Daddy now?" Lucius asked his son.
Draco nodded excitedly, "Is it a new toy?"
Lucius shook his head and grinned, "Nope, guess again!"
Draco thought, "Is it a sword and an eyepatch so I can be a pirate?"
Draco's father shook his head again, "Guess again."
"A snake friend for Greg?"
Draco was getting frustrated and more excited as he guessed, "I don't know, Daddy! Tell me!"
Lucius sighed and smiled at his impatient son, "Close your eyes, put out your hand, and open it. Your present will be in your hand when I tell you to open your eyes."
Draco obeyed and Lucius pulled out a dragon pendant necklace from his pants pocket. He looked at the pendant before handing it to his son. It was a dragon with its wings spread and its head facing to the left. The eye that was visible was a ruby. The tail was curled around its left leg. The tips of the wings were attached to the chain that would make the necklace. The body of the dragon was emerald green, while the wings were a lighter green, and the belly was yellow. He handed the necklace to his son and told him to open his eyes. He was secretly wishing his son would like it and appreciate it.
Draco looked down at the necklace and smiled, "It's a dragon!"
Lucius nodded, "Yep. Did you know 'Draco' means dragon? That's why I got it for you!"
Draco's mouth formed a small 'o', "Really? It means dragon?! Cool, I'm a dragon! RAWR!"
Draco got off his chair and began waving his arms around to imitate flying. Lucius laughed and grabbed Draco as he "flew" past him. He picked Draco up by wrapping his arm around Draco's stomach and pulling him towards himself. Draco giggled and squirmed as Lucius tickled him. They finally calmed down and Draco looked down at the necklace his father gave him. Lucius picked up the necklace and put it on for Draco.
While little Draco played with the necklace, Lucius thought about the charms and special magic that were placed on the necklace. If Lucius, Narcissa, or any of Draco's siblings were in trouble, the dragon would turn colors and a piece of parchment would appear in his hand, telling him what was wrong, who it was, where they were, and how badly they needed help. And if Lucius, Narcissa, or any of his siblings were to die, the back of the necklace would read, In Loving Memory of..., and their names would be displayed underneath. The dragon would turn black while it's belly would turn red.
They both smelled pancakes and Lucius leaned in next to Draco's ear, "Let's go scare your mum."
Draco nodded happily, but stopped as he went to slide off his father's lap. He turned and hugged Lucius, wrapping his tiny arms around his father's neck.
"I love my dragon, Daddy."
Lucius smiled down at him, "You're welcome, Draco."
He hugged his son back and let Draco slide off his lap and run into the kitchen to see his mother. Lucius followed after him when he heard an 'EEK!', and saw Narcissa charming a spoon of pancake batter to chase Draco for scaring her. They were both laughing as Draco ran around the kitchen to stay away from the batter. Lucius stepped in front of Draco, and Draco ran into him, the spoon smacking him in the back of the head and sending batter everywhere.
"Oi, Daddy!" Draco yelled, hitting his father's leg.
"Hey! No hitting or no breakfast!" Lucius warned.
Draco apologized and they gathered in the Dining Room once more, beginning to eat breakfast. Narcissa gave Draco his present from her, which was a beginner's broom and the present from both of them was a toy wand and a set of robes. He thanked them for his toys and clothes and told his dad he wanted to fly. Lucius told him he'd teach Draco to fly the day after Christmas.
"Draco, we'll open one of your christmas presents after the party tonight with your brother and sisters. But I need to talk to your mother for a moment. Why don't you play with your wand in your room for a while, alright? " Lucius told him.
Draco sped out of the room, his new cloak whipping behind him, his left arm flapping, his mouth buzzing, and his toy wand pointed in front of him, shooting imaginary spells at imaginary bandits.
Before Draco left the kitchen he yelled, "Argh! You won't get away from me bandits!"
Lucius and Narcissa smiled after their son, the latter waving her wand to take care of the dishes. Lucius turned to his wife and bit his lip when he felt her stare on him.
"What could you possibly have left to tell me?" Narcissa whispered angrily.
"I had to invite the Unspeakables and a few Death Eater families to Draco's party tonight," Lucius gulped.
Narcissa stood up angrily, "NO! I WILL NOT HAVE THOSE FILTHY BEINGS IN MY HOUSE!"
Lucius shook his head sadly, "It's already been arranged. Mr. Brockman did it. I have no control, 'Cissa."
"Oh, don't you ''Cissa' me! You ABSOLUTELY have control! This is our house, not Erwin's! And I said NO!"
"Narcissa, please. You don't have to be nice to them, just civil. And don't speak of our beliefs, because then we're given up for sure. Please, Nar. You know I wouldn't do anything to put our family in danger. I love you all too much..."
"Lucius Marcus Malfoy, I can not believe you just said that!"
Narcissa began to tear up, knowing her family was in grave danger, but she couldn't dictate her husband's life or his job. Mr. Brockman did buy there house after all.
"I have to go now, Lucius. Your eleven-year-old daughters and your fourteen-year-old son are coming home and I have to pick them up at the airport. Your five-year-old son should be getting a visit from the Granger's soon. You can explain to Heather why they can't come to the party tonight. Goodbye."
Narcissa then walked through the kitchen and through the hall until she reached the foyer. She grabbed her coat, slipped on her shoes, said goodbye to Draco through the speaker and apparated to the wizarding airport.
Lucius flinched when Narcissa apparated away. He then heard the doorbell ring its cheery tune and sighed. He walked to the door and greeted the Granger's, hugging Hermione and Heather, and shaking Ernest's hand. He called Draco down. The Granger's wished him a 'Happy Birthday' and Hermione gave him his present. Lucius smiled, they knew Draco well already. Heather had obviously gone into Hogsmeade and went to Honeydukes. They had gotten him an assortment of sweets from Draco's favorite, Fizzing Wizzbees, to Lucius's personal favorite, Sugar Quills. Hermions had also drawn Draco a picture of the day they met, and for a soon to be five-year-old, it was pretty good.
The Granger's stayed from ten to two. At about 12:30, Lucius pulled Heather to the side and explained the danger of her and her family being present at the party that night. She understood though, and explained to her family that Draco would see them tomorrow and they could make up for it then. By 2:00, the Granger's had left and Narcissa had returned with Brigit, Celeste, and Eric. They all hugged their father and their brother while wishing him a 'Happy Birthday'. Draco was also more than willing to share his candy.
By 7:00 that night, everyone had showered and dressed in their best clothes for the party. At 8:00, people started pouring in the door, mostly Unspeakables and their families, but there were quite a few Death Eater families around. Lucius made his rounds with his family, introducing them to the Death Eaters.
"Hello. My name's Lucius Malfoy. This is my wife Narcissa, my daughters Brigit and Celeste, and my sons, Eric and Draco. Nar, kids, meet the Parkinson's," Lucius introduced, holding his hand for the man to take.
"Peter Parkinson. My wife Janet, our daughter, Pansy, and our son, Jack. Pleased to meet your acquaintance," Peter said, shaking Lucius's hand.
Pansy curtseyed at the Malfoy kids, "Peased to meet your ack-wee-ay-tance."
The older kids snickered, curtseying and bowing while Draco stared at her. She looked about his age, maybe a little younger. She had short black hair that curled behind her ears and little stick-on diamond earrings that were shaped like hearts. She had beady brown eyes like looked like wood on an oak desk. Her skin was slightly tanned and she wore a bright pink dress with a big bow on the back and matching pink shoes with frilly white socks. She had a tiny ring on her finger that was shaped like a flower.
"You're cute," she whispered, giggling in a squealish voice.
'You're not,' Draco thought, turning from her quickly and looking to his father.
Lucius picked Draco up and they moved to the next family. After an hour of introductions, Draco had met the Parkinson's, the Crabbe's, the Goyle's, and some other families who he didn't even care about. The Zabini's, whom Lucius and Narcissa hadn't seen since Hogwarts even though they were best friends back then, were one of the Unspeakable families, Jacob Zabini having just joined the Department. Dinner came and Pansy sat next to Draco and kept touching his leg or flinging food at him so he would notice her. It got so bad, Celeste sat between them to save her brother from being scarred for the rest of his life.
Eric had met a girl named Riley from the Sawaged's, who were an Unspeakable family, and they had disappeared a few moments ago. Draco thought about how his brother looked so much like their mother. He had their father's platinum bonde hair, but his mother's hazel eyes with flecks of blue. He was fairly tan from going to school in California, and was built from playing Quidditch. He was the school's seeker and Draco wanted to be just like him.
Brigit and Celeste were talking to twins from another Unspeakable family, the Waylan's. Andy and Ricky were twelve-years-old and went to school at Beauxabutons, so they had a small french accent. They were in their second year. Draco looked at his twin sisters. They both looked alike. Well, if you remove their hair and eye color. And their sense of style.
See, Brigit and Celeste were both beautiful girls, but Celeste was prettier than Brigit, though not by much. Brigit had dirty-blonde hair and the Malfoy blue eyes. Her hair was naturally straight. Celeste on the other hand, was special. She had midnight black hair and honey colored eyes. Brigit was more the girly-girl with a little tomboy in her, and Celeste was the opposite. Brigit could pack a mean punch, and Celeste could be a wonderful hair and makeup stylist, but they were comfortable being themselves in front of anyone.
Draco, having drifted into thought world, as he named it, while thinking about his sisters, snapped back to reality when he heard a loud crash. He looked up and saw Brigit and a boy her age with raven black hair and gold eyes, wrestling and fighting on the floor. Celeste was being held back by her mother while trying to jump into the fight and help Brigit. Lucius and the boy's father, Peter Parkinson, were trying to break up the fight.
"BRIGIT! WHAT THE BLOODY HELL'S GOTTEN INTO YOU!?" Lucius yelled, pulling his daughter from Jack Parkinson before she beat him into oblivion.
Brigit sniffed and wiped her bleeding nose with her hand, her anger evident. She had scratch marks all over her arms and face, some open and bleeding. Bruises began to appear on her arms and legs as she lunged at Jack again, but Lucius held her still.
"Brigit, tell me why you were beating up, Jack," Lucius gritted his teeth.
"He called Celeste a horrible name!" Brigit yelled.
"Did not!" Jack yelled back, tissue stuffed up his nose to stop the bleeding.
"YOU DID TOO YOU LITTLE RAT!" Celeste screamed at him.
"Lucius, what the bloody hell is your daughter attacking my son for?!" Peter yelled at him.
"I'm trying to find out, Peter..." Lucius gnawed on his lip.
Brigit lunged at Jack again when she broke free from Lucius's grip. Lucius grabbed her by the waist in time, but Peter wasn't as happy.
"Keep that filthy, little wretch away from my son and my family!"
Brigit began to steam up and pointed at Mr. Parkinson angrily, screaming, "THAT! THAT! THAT'S WHAT JACK CALLED CELESTE! A FILTHY, LITTLE WRETCH! I'LL KILL YOU, YOU LITTLE..."
Brigit scratched at her father to let her get Jack. Everyone in the room was silent, Brigit, Celeste, and everyone else in the room glaring at the Parkinson's except for those not old enough to understand.
Lucius looked to Celeste and his wife and Narcissa nodded in response to the accusation. Lucius clamped his jaw together and stood, holding Brigit in front of him. Lucius glared at Peter and Jack.
"Peter, I believe Jack needs to apologize to Celeste, Brigit needs to apologize to Jack, and you need to apologize to Brigit," Lucius said, squeezing his daughters shoulders lightly.
Peter nodded, "Brigit, I apologize. It's not acceptable for me to use that kind of language toward a child. Jack, apologize to Celeste."
"But Dad," Jack moaned.
"Peter squeezed his shoulder angrily, "Do it, now."
"I'm sorry, Celeste."
"Brigit, apologize to Jack," Lucius told his daughter.
"I'm sorry, Jack."
Draco watched as Brigit walked to their mother and Narcissa spoke for the first time all night.
"I think the party's over. It's time for everyone to leave now."
Lucius nodded and let Narcissa heal Brigit's wounds while he gathered everyone. Eric and Riley were just coming down the main staircase when the Sawaged's entered the foyer. They said goodbye to each other and shared a look of secrecy. Draco watched from a corner as Peter Parkinson whispered to Mr. Vincent Crabbe and Mr. Gregory Goyle, making the three of them laugh. Lucius showed them the door and they parted ways, going home to their families.
Lucius began walking towards the kitchen, when Draco stepped from the shadows, scaring him and Eric, who was a few feet behind their father.
"Hey there, birthday boy! Want some cake?" Lucius asked his son.
Draco nodded greedily, "And then presents!"
Lucius and Eric laughed, going into the kitchen. The family of six ate their exploding cake, then cleaned up the kitchen from the cake. They then headed into the Living Room where all the presents for Draco's birthday and Christmas were. Draco opened all his birthday presents. He ended up with an entire pirate costume from his grandparents. (A/N: Narcissa's parents died in 1975. Lucius's parents are very close to death.), a toy snitch from Eric, money from his aunts, uncles, and cousins, a toy sword from Brigit, a parrot that talked like a pirate from Celeste, and a few assorted candies and monies from the Unspeakable families. The Death Eater families didn't bring gifts, which was good. Lucius would've taken them away anyway.
"Time for our tradition! One christmas present on Christmas Eve!" Narcissa announced.
She grabbed random gifts, one for each person from someone who wasn't in the room. Narcissa got a beautiful silver bracelet that hooked together by two W's. It symbolized Wildwood, a place in America where her family would go every summer. On one side of the bracelet, there were seven gold bands, representing the Seven Mile Beach. The W's also were decorated in diamonds. She loved the gift her cousin, Sirius, had sent her.
'I recognize this bracelet. It's Aunt Gertrude's. Sirius must've inherited it from Uncle Mike. Aunt Gertrude never did like Sirius. He must've had someone deliver it for him. He doesn't deserve to be in Azkaban. He would never do that to James. He loved him too much. Ugh, who could've done that to them?! I hope he gets out soon...' Narcissa thought.
Eric had gotten a new broom, a StarTamer 4000, from Uncle James, Aunt Ruth, and their cousins, Lenny and Carl. Brigit had gotten new hair clips from Uncle Ty, Aunt Dottie, and cousins, Sharon and Karen. Celeste got a football from her friend Cho, who went to school at Hogwarts. She was a second year. Lucius had gotten a cell phone that worked off magic. Just say the person's name and they're contacted through floo. He had gotten it from Sirius, or Sirius's messenger since he was in Azkaban. Such a good man. He was in Azkaban for the wrong reason.
Draco had gotten a set of magically altered bludgers and beater's bats. He had also gotten a "Quidditch field in a box!". He had gotten these wonderful gifts from his cousin, Janice, on Lucius's side.
"Alright, kids. Off to bed or Santa won't come tonight!" Lucius said, looking at Draco.
The older kids nodded, "Night Mum, night Dad."
They headed off upstairs.
Draco went over and gave his mother a hug and a kiss, "Night Mummy."
He repeated it with his father, "Night Daddy."
"Goodnight, Draco. Happy Birthday," the parents said simultaneously.
The kids were in bed. The loving parents were snuggled together in front of the fire. All was quiet and peaceful. It was a night to enjoy and relish. For few would be coming their way soon.
Sneak Preview of Chapter 3:
"MUMMY! DADDY! IT'S CHRISTMAS! AND MY BIRFDAY! WAKE UP! WAKE UP, WAKE UP, WAKE UP!" Hermione screamed, looking around.
She heard her parents get up and saw them stumbling down the stairs. They walked over and sat next to their daughter, giving her sleepy smiles. But something was missing. Hermione smiled mischeviously.
"Exskreeze me a moment," and Hermione dashed up the stairs to her older brother's old bedroom.
She poked at the door and it creeked open, revealing a sleeping Jeremy. Hermione smiled again and tiptoed to the side he was facing, putting her face really close to his. Her brother's eyes sprung open.
"Stay close, Joie!" Jeremy yelled.
"Trying to be the father now?" Ernest asked, a smirk on his face.
"She's just so young. She's only five! She feels like my own kid. She just relies on you and me. Mum's not exactly very open to letting the little tike express herself..."
"Don't talk about your mother like that! She deserves nothing but respect from you and your sister!"
"I know. I'm sorry dad. It's just, why did she have to act like that at breakfast? We weren't doing anything wrong!"
"She's just stressed. You don't need a reason for her behavior. Let her be herself. Now, we shouldn't be talking about this. It's Joie's birthday and we need to take her bowling. Let's go."
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