Chapter 8 : Explaining the Mark
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Draco walked down the steps and stood side by side with his father staring at the Wizengmont and jury who were starting to come back to their senses. It wasn't long before one shook their head to clear it and then pointed a finger out towards Draco.
"Draco Malfoy!" he started in a very over dramatic tone. "You are hereby arrested and will be escorted to Azkaban immediately until your trial!"
Draco stared back at the man no emotions playing across his face, causing the man to shuffle around uncomfortably until he froze with fear hearing a soft firm voice laced with anger.
"What do you mean arrested. You will not lay a hand on my son." Lucius said clasping a hand on Draco's shoulder.
Draco's eyes suddenly widened but no one had taken notice. ‘No! Don't tell him, he's been through enough all ready! , shoot ,shoot, shoot!' Draco thought to himself trying to mentally will the man to not say a word. The man was oblivious to Draco's silent pleas though and suddenly frowned.
"Oh that's right, you don't know do you Malfoy? Turns out your son is just like you. You should be so proud." he said in disgust. Draco started to breathe faster and wished this man would somehow be swallowed up by the floor. In fact he wished everyone would. He really wanted to be alone with his father. Unfortunately his wishing skills seemed to be faltering as his wishes were not fulfilled for the second time in the last two minutes.
"Your magnificent son let vicious death eaters into his school, and plotted to kill the headmaster." he spat out glaring at the boy in question.
Draco felt his father tense up beside him and looked straight into the man's eyes. "But he didn't use any curses did he! I'm betting you have no proof it was my son either do you?!" He snarled, still not knowing what happened but standing up for his son none the less.
Draco knew his father wanted to question him more than anything right now, and felt a huge wave of gratitude and admiration towards his father for standing up for him. He suddenly felt safer, like he was little again and his father would take care of everything. He had always done so before so why not now.
The man glared back. He was annoyed. Here he was trying to arrest a very guilty boy, and his clueless father just has to keep talking and making things difficult! "Proof! Proof! You want proof- look at his left arm!" he shrieked wanting this proud arrogant man who knew nothing of the past year to be humbled by the truth. He shot a spell out of his wand that hit Draco's left cloak sleeve flinging it up so hard it hit Draco in the face before settling on his upper arm exposing his lower arm.
There etched on his skin was the dark mark. His father stared at it and couldn't keep the wave of shock from passing over his face, as well as most of the courtroom's. Only some members of the Wizengmont, the man, and the trio seemed to be unfazed, while Draco whimpered and snuck a glance over at his father. ‘I can explain, please you have to listen.' He thought but instead said; "So?"
"So?" The question hung in the air as everyone absorbed it. No one was expecting that answer. What did he mean "So?" It was the dark mark! How could he wave it off so easily?
Hermione had a close relationship with her father, they talked a lot and would always tell things to each other before telling others. Never in a million years did she think this would apply to the Malfoys but apparently she didn't know everything. She was starting to feel uncomfortable, couldn't anyone else sense these two needed to talk in private now, not to a courtroom? Not being able to take it she shot a spell enveloping the two in a bubble charm that would block out their conversation to anyone but themselves.
Draco and Lucius were suddenly in a bubble. ‘What the?' they both thought. Draco caught Hermione's face which was now frantically mouthing words to him. He concentrated and was able to read her lips well enough. "It's a bubble charm you can talk freely now!" Lucius seemed to understand what is was and looked at his son. All to aware they were still being watched he made no motions and told Draco to do the same. Instead they talked emotionless and showed no expressions, but found it was hard for their voices to stay totally emotionless.
"What possessed you to get something like that!"
"I didn't want to I just....... ok hear me out. After you were locked away Vold..Vol.. Ah! He Who Must Not Be Named, wanted punishment for your failure."
At this Lucius paled before asking, "Your mother, she's alright...right?" he spoke almost pleading for Draco to say yes.
"I think so." Draco replied weakly not sure what had happened the few days he had been gone. "She was..ok...last I saw her, but that was a few days ago now." He paused briefly watching his father become a little less pale before continuing, "Anyway, he made me a death-eater and sent me on a task to k..kill Dumbledore."
Lucius was raging inside. Stupid man! If the Dark Lord was mad with him then take it out on him. How dare he try and kill his son! He managed to keep cool on the inside though and asked. "Is he dead?"
Draco managed to shove away any emotional baggage this question carried, and answer simply "Yes. But it wasn't me who killed him."
They carried on their conversation this way Draco shoving all emotions away as he calmly told of everything that happened that year, and Lucius going through a range of emotions, from anger at the Dark Lord, to pity and fear for his son, but managing to keep calm on the outside.
When they finally finished, Lucius now well informed Draco caught Hermione's eye and nodded. She lifted the charm and the two faced the courtroom again.
"My son was forced into getting the dark mark, sent by the Dark Lord on a suicide mission, and had his family threatened with death if he did not agree. He did not perform any unforgivables himself; the imperio curse on Madame Rosmerta performed by another. If you do not believe him or me use a truth potion." Lucius said calmly, and without waiting for what he said to be processed by anyone, he pushed on. "Now if you will tell me my sentence we will both be going. Oh and if you find my wife dead, please do notify me."
The courtroom was all staring at them and half were gaping like fish. Lucius sighed impatiently trying hard to suppress the smirk that was forming, happy with the effect he had on the people. "So..my sentence." he said and thankfully one of the Wizengmont snapped out of it long enough to say "15 years". Lucius solemnly nodded and before anyone knew what was happening father and son were out the door.
Breaking into a panic, 2 aurors who were watching were tearing down the hall with the guards at their heels only stopping when the found Lucius standing there looking annoyed. "Finally. Let's go you turtles." and with that prisoner, guards, and aurors had apparated to the boat that would take them to Azkaban.
Standing in the forest a black cloak was thrown onto Huttle while the other five hid in the bushes.
"Oy! Thick heads! Boulder brains!" Huttle barked forming his face into a disgusted snarl. Suddenly lumps were moving towards him and Ginny held back a yelp of fear. They were huge!
"Finally. Well we decided we didn't need you anymore. Dark Lord's orders." And with that spell after spell was shot at the giants who stood still, looking dumbly at him until they finally comprehended what was happening and then... "ROAR!"
The lumps were outraged. Trees were being uprooted everywhere and all 6 wizards and witches were ducking frantically trying to avoid all the airborne trees and boulders while covering their ears and wincing in pain. The roars that echoed through the forest were horrific. Loud didn't even begin to describe them.
As soon as they had a chance, Tonks grabbed Ginny's hand and all of them apparted back to the car where all six of them piled in and drove away. Fast. Ginny was positive she had never even gone this fast on a broom before, and that was saying something as she loved to zoom as fast as she could through the air.
After they were miles away and halfway back to headquarters tehey managed to find their voices again. "Well, I think we accomplished our mission." said Moody earning a glare from Lupin who was rocking his left arm after it had been smacked with a flying branch the size of a small tree's trunk.
Three depressed teenagers trudged their way back towards headquarters. They had lost Draco. They were so stupid for letting him go like that, and most importantly, at least to Hermione, they were going to be in major trouble.
They had spent the last two hours racing around the ministry in a feeble hope to catch sight of Malfoy but no luck. After exhausting themselves they finally gave up and decided they might as well head back.
They opened the door and almost fainted in shock. Sitting there calmly in the living room was Draco Malfoy. "There you are, where's my room? I refuse to go back down there." he finished pointing disgustingly towards the stars that lead to the basement.
He was here, he hadn't run away. The three sent praise to whoever was responsible for this, and suddenly felt a huge weight lifted off their shoulders. "Well, this isn't a very big house, there aren't really anymore rooms.." Ron trailed off, honestly speaking the truth. There was only five bedrooms and one was taken up by his parents, one was his and Harry's, one was Ginny and Hermione's, one was Tonks' and Lupin's, and the last was McGonagall's. They were the only ones really living here full time.
"Uhh.." Harry started knowing there wasn't much of a choice and still just thankful he was still here, "I guess you'll have to share with me and Ron..there's room to squeeze another bed in there." It was hard to tell who looked more disgusted, Ron or Malfoy. Ron was obviously disgusted with sharing a room with Malfoy, and vice versa.
Hermione couldn't keep her mouth shut any longer. "Why didn't you run off?" she blurted.
He scoffed and answered confidently. "And why would I do a thing like that? Here you'll keep me out of Azkaban and away from Vol..Vol.." ‘Potter can do it, so can I!' he thought to himself forcing the word out. "Voldermort. So I decided to stay."
All three were mildly impressed he said Voldermort's name but continued on as nothing happened. The truth was though they were all starting to respect Malfoy a little more after standing up for his father, and making logical decisions about where to live. Especially Hermione.
It was bad enough that she noticed he really was handsome after he had taken a bath. He had come out dripping wet with a towel on exposing his lean and muscular chest, his strong muscled arms, and god his blonde hair looked good dripping into his face like that! He had his old muddy clothes clutched in his hand and flung them in Ron's face before turning to Harry and demanding to know where his new robes were.
From there an annoyed Ron, Harry, and blushing Hermione had searched Lupin's robes until they found a half decent one which they finally convinced Malfoy to wear, but not before he complained about how he was being forced to wear such poor robes fit only for a Weasley, muggleborn, or halfbreed. It hadn't escaped Harry or Hermione notice he had said muggleborn not mudblood, but didn't mention it and Ron didn't even notice what Malfoy had said, instead to busy telling how much of a spoiled, selfish git he was.
Harry was now leading Draco up to his and Ron's room but was careful to avoid McGonagall's study afraid Order things might be in there. Ron and Hermione followed silently, Hermione behind Ron staring at the back of his red hair as she contemplated an odd question. ‘Was she starting to get a little crush on Malfoy?'
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