Chapter 16 : Gifts are given
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Draco was beginning to relax. Ginny was leaning against his chest with a smile on her face, and that never led to bad things. Her mother had disappeared upstairs and he was hoping that they were going to be alone for a while. He reached to stroke Ginny’s hair, and she sat bolt upright and glared at him.
“Where did you disappear to tonight? If you hadn’t run off, those harpies wouldn’t have been able to ambush me.”
Draco smirked at Ginny. “I really do wish you would pick a mood. I’m having trouble keeping up.”
Ginny opened her mouth to retort, but he cut her off. “I went to my room to retrieve your Christmas present. I planned on giving it to you after dinner.”
Ginny’s demeanor became friendlier. “I guess I can’t be mad at you for that. Do you still have my present?”
“Yes, but I’m not giving it to you tonight.”
Draco sighed. “I can’t really explain it to you, but I need to give you your gift at the Manor.”
“Well then I guess I won’t be getting it, because I’m not going back there.” Ginny huffed and retreated to her side of the couch.
Draco reached up to rub his forehead. “I never realized what a pain the arse having a girlfriend was. Your moods affect me. When people make you mad I get angry. This is exhausting, and right now I am not seeing the payoff.”
Expecting Ginny to hex him after his admission, he was surprised to see her smiling at him. “You really do care about me,” Ginny said with surprise in her voice.
Draco smirked at her. “I do not. I just like having you around occasionally.”
“You like me.” Ginny teased in a singsong voice as she leaned over and kissed him on the neck.
“No I don’t.” Draco assured her as he leaned down to nuzzle her neck. “I just think that you’re soft and warm and that you smell good.”
Ginny giggled and then bit her lip as he hit a sensitive spot on her neck. She pulled away from him and said, “We can’t do this here.”
“My parents are here, and my brothers are in and out of the house all of the time.”
Draco stood up and pulled her towards the floo. “We’ll go back to the Manor.”
“No,” Ginny balked. “I don’t want to go there.”
“Well what do you suggest?”
Ginny thought a moment, and then she smiled. “Wait a minute. You have houses in other places, don’t you?”
“Yes.” Draco answered not seeing where this was going.
Ginny rolled her eyes. “Apparate us to one of your vacation homes, or some such place.”
Draco grabbed her and kissed her. Then he drew his wand and Ginny felt herself Apparate. When they reappeared, they were in a large foyer. A house elf quickly appeared with a startled expression. “Master Malfoy, we weren’t expecting you.”
Draco nodded at the creature. “Miss Weasley and I were hoping to have a quiet dinner in the parlor upstairs. We may be staying the night. Please prepare the two connecting rooms.”
The house elf disappeared, and Ginny followed Draco up to a parlor where a fire was already burning. He grabbed a bottle of open wine, and poured them both a glass. She had the brief thought that money certainly made life easier.
Draco drank his wine, while he waited for the house elf to appear and tell him that everything was taken care of. When the creature appeared and nodded at him, he walked over and grabbed Ginny’s hand. She followed him into the bedroom and briefly allowed her gaze to take in their lush surroundings. When Draco leaned down to kiss her, she felt a tingle of anticipation run down her spine, and she experienced a slight shiver.
Apparently Draco noticed this, because he smirked at her.
“Oh shut up, I think you smell good too.”
Draco laughed as he closed the distance between their their mouths. Ginny felt herself being swept away on the tide of something that no longer felt just like lust.
When Ginny walked through the front door of the Burrow later that evening, she was humming a popular love song. Molly Weasley looked up at her daughter and laughed. “You’ve got it bad, haven’t you?”
Ron put his head down on the table and muttered, “Stupid Fred and George, stupid mistletoe...”
Ginny ignored her brother’s nonsensical ranting and smiled at her mum. “For an evening that started out horrible, it ended rather nicely.”
“I saw that kiss on the front porch,” her mum teased.
Ginny sighed and asked, “When did you tell Dad that you loved him?”
Ron lifted his head up to glare at his sister, and then he said, “Mum, please wait to answer that until after I’ve left the room.” Standing as if he were in pain, Ron slowly walked from the room and headed up the stairs.
Molly chuckled at her son before she replied. “I wanted to tell your father that I loved him after our third date, but I waited. I was afraid if I blurted it out, he’d run away.”
“I know what you mean. I think Draco would likely Dissaparate on the spot.”
Lucius Malfoy finished writing on the parchment that was in front of him. He read it over one more time, and then he rolled it up and tied a green ribbon around it. After searching for a moment, he found Narcissa in the sitting room off of her bedroom.
“Narcissa, I wanted you to read this and tell me what you think of it.”
Narcissa looked up from her book and held out her hand. She untied the green ribbon and unfurled the parchment. As she read, tears formed in her eyes.
You are cordially invited to Malfoy Manor on January twentieth, at four o’clock, to hear Lucius and Narcissa Malfoy repeat their wedding vows. The service will include Vows of Matrimony and Vows of Fidelity. A formal dinner and dance will follow.
Narcissa looked up at her husband and asked, “Is this my Christmas present?”
Lucius went to her side and sank down on one knee. “If you agree to marry me again, then it will be my Christmas present.”
Narcissa laughed and threw her arms around her husband. He sighed and kissed her on the cheek. “Can I assume that is a yes?”
“Yes, it is a yes, but why now?”
“I heard you talking to Draco in the greenhouse earlier today. I wanted to assure you that I had truly come to my senses and that I wasn’t going to get bored and look for someone else.”
“Did you hear what Draco said about having more children?” Narcissa asked with a hopeful look in her eye.
“Would it make you happy to have another child?”
“I think it would.”
Lucius smiled. “Then we’ll just have to see if we can’t make that happen.” Cupping his wife’s face, he kissed her deeply. Then he stood and pulled her down the hall to a guest bedroom. “I’ve always liked this room. Do you think this should be our new master bedroom?”
Narcissa looked at the elegant room that was decorated in light blue and said, “I think this room looks like a nice place to make a new beginning.”
Draco woke up the next morning and went down to the dining room for breakfast. He found his parents eating breakfast and talking about the details of some upcoming ball.
“Draco, your father and I have some news.”
Looking up, he noticed the huge grin on his mother’s face. “What has you so happy this morning?” he asked as he sipped his tea.
Lucius answered, “Your mother and I are going to renew our wedding vows, and we’re adding Vows of Fidelity.”
Draco smiled at his mother. “You know, you should have made him take those the first time around.”
Narcissa chuckled. “I know, but I’m happy he’s agreeing to take them now.”
“I am not agreeing; it was my idea.” Lucius protested.
Draco nodded at his father. “I am proud of you.”
Lucius smirked at his son. “Thank you. Did you get everything straightened out with Ginny last night?”
“I believe I did.” Draco replied with a smirk that looked exactly like his father’s.
It was the day before Christmas Eve, and Ginny was helping her mum decorate the tree. Harry and Ron were sitting on the couch offering helpful advice, or so they thought. Ginny finally turned around and said, “Either get off your arses and help, or shut up.”
Harry looked at Ron and said, “I guess Malfoy hasn’t owled yet today.”
Ginny turned around and glared at Harry. He squirmed under her gaze and she smiled. “Harry, I am not irritated because I haven’t heard from Draco yet today. We had a lovely date last night. I am irritated because you two have done nothing but sit on that couch and jabber since you got here. There is a lot to be done before tomorrow, so I repeat either help or shut up.”
Harry chuckled. “All right, Gin. What would you like me to do?”
Molly Weasley answered. “Why don’t you and Ron make up the beds upstairs. Harry you’ll room with Ron and we’ll put Hermione in with Ginny as usual. I’m sure all the beds could use some clean sheets.”
Ron and Harry stood up and muttered as they went up the stairs to complete their assigned tasks. They found the sheets and got to work. When they were finishing up in Ginny’s room, Hermione walked in. “Hello, boys. I see Molly put you to work.”
Harry smiled at his friend. She seemed to have blossomed since Ron had finally seen her as a girl. Harry noticed that she had started wearing perfume, but he wasn’t going to say anything.
Ron beamed at Hermione, and Harry figured he should leave them alone. “Hey, Hermione. I’m glad you’re here. I’m just going to go put some stuff away in Ron’s room. I’ll catch you in a few minutes. He casually shut the door on his way out.
“Is that a new outfit? You look pretty.”
Hermione smiled at Ron’s compliment. “Thank you. My grandmum sent it to me.”
Ron stepped forward with a smile. “I suppose I should kiss you now, since we probably won’t be alone again the whole time you’re here.”
Hermione chuckled as Ron walked forward and put his arms around her. When he leaned down to kiss her, she sighed. She still felt like this all might be a dream. When he pulled back she smiled at him. “I heard I have Fred and George to thank for the mistletoe.”
“Yes, but they are also to blame for Ginny and Malfoy.”
Hermione chuckled. “I don’t know. Those two fought almost as much as we used to, maybe they were meant to be.”
Ron stepped back from Hermione and glared at her. “Did you hit your head on that trip through the Floo?”
Behind them, the bedroom door was flung open to reveal Fred and George making kissing faces at them. Hermione laughed and Ron turned red. Ginny came along and shooed the twins away. “Ron, go see to Harry. I need to have some girl talk with Hermione.”
Ron frowned. “What don’t you want me to hear?”
Ginny smiled widely before she said, “My last period was just brutal. I was so bloated, and I had cramps the whole time.”
Ron smacked his hands over his ears and fled the room. When the girls stopped laughing, Hermione asked. “What’s up?”
Ginny told Hermione all the details about meeting Draco’s parents including the disastrous parts and the happy ending.
Hermione sat for a moment. “That has to be the most absurd thing I’ve ever heard. They have mistresses and their wives know about it?”
Ginny nodded. “I know. Can you believe they thought I was shagging Draco’s father?”
Hermione squirmed in disgust. “That is just wrong.”
Ginny sighed. “Dinner with Draco was really nice.”
Hermione snorted. “I doubt your getting all moony eyed over the dinner portion of the evening.”
Ginny giggled. “No, the dinner was afterwards. It was great, though. It was like we were married...”
Ron opened the door at that point and cringed. “No, no, no. Repeat after me. I have suffered from a head injury and I am confused. I am not in love with a snarky git.”
Ginny smiled at Ron. “Am I supposed to say that, or were you talking to Hermione?”
Ron frowned and slammed the door. Hermione sighed. “I am sorry, but it is fun to see your brother get so worked up over this. I mean I think Malfoy is a snarky prat, but he does seem to care about you. Although I would avoid mentioning the word marriage, it seems to make men tuck tail and run.”
Ginny looked at Hermione. “What aren’t you telling me?”
“I just slipped up when Ron and I were talking about our plans after graduation. I said that it would be nice to get a flat in London together, and he about fell out of his chair. I think he broke a new speed record for ascending the stairs to the boys’ dorms.”
A knock sounded on the door before Harry stuck his head in. “Ginny, there’s a blond git here to see you,” he informed her cheekily.
Ginny threw a pillow at Harry’s head as she hopped up to check her hair in the mirror. Then she casually descended the stairs to see Draco standing in her kitchen completely ignoring the three redheaded men who were glaring at him.
She walked over and grabbed his hand. “Let’s talk out on the porch.”
Draco followed her out on the porch. She pulled him down the porch away from the window so that they wouldn’t be spied upon.
“This is a nice surprise,” she said with a huge smile on her face.
“I wanted to stop by and give you your Christmas gift,” he informed her. “This seems like the perfect day since it’s not too windy.”
Ginny looked at the small slender object that Draco pulled out of his pocket. After he used his wand to restore it to normal size, her eyes grew huge. “Is that a broom?” she asked.
“Unwrap it and see.”
Ginny ripped off the paper and squealed in delight. “You bought me the new Nimbus!”
Draco laughed at her reaction and then he caught her in his arms when she launched herself at him and kissed him. When she pulled back she asked. “Can we go flying?”
“That is what one normally does on a broom,” he informed her as he retrieved his own broom from his pocket and enlarged it.
“I’m going to tell my mum, and then we can go.” Ginny stuck her head in the front door and hollered. “Mum, Draco got me the new Nimbus. We’re going to go flying.”
Molly looked up at her daughter and smiled. “All right, have fun.”
Ron looked at Harry. “Did she say he got her the new Nimbus?”
Harry nodded. “Yes, she did. Be nice to her, maybe she’ll let you take it out for a spin.”
Ron scowled. “I thought Malfoys were supposed to throw around diamonds and jewelry and things like that.”
Hermione sighed. “Apparently he knows your sister fairly well. Ginny couldn’t give a rat’s arse about that kind of stuff, but I bet she loves the new broom.”
Fred looked at George and asked, “Did you hear our little Hermione? I’m so proud of her using one of our colorful sayings.”
George nodded. “She didn’t get it quite right. It’s supposed to be a flying rat’s arse, Hermione.”
“Why would a rat fly?” Hermione asked in all seriousness.
Ron hugged her. “That’s my Hermione, always thinking.”
Hermione snuggled into Ron’s embrace and sighed. “It’s nice to be appreciated.”
Fred and George made gagging noises, and Harry laughed. Hermione looked up at Ron, “Ignore them, Ron.”
“I have been trying to do that for years.” Ron informed her as he kissed the top of her head.
Hermione appeared to think for a moment. “It would be funnier if you said, an aerial rodent’s rectum.”
Fred and George both burst into laughter while Harry just looked at Hermione. “Those are three words I never would have expected to hear come out of your mouth.”
Hermione just shrugged, “The twins are a bad influence.”
Ginny was having the time of her life. She and Draco were playing tag on their broomsticks. He had caught her last, and now she was chasing him. His flying skills were amazing. He was diving and rolling, and she was doing her best to imitate him. Finally, he stopped and landed on the ground. She flew down to him and smiled. “This is the best present I’ve ever gotten.”
Draco laughed at her unbridled enthusiasm. “You are ridiculously easy to please.”
“Hey,” Ginny protested.
“That was not an insult,” he assured her as he wrapped an arm around her shoulders. “It’s just nice to see a woman who doesn’t expect diamonds as a gift.”
“Diamonds are pretty, but they are not very practical. I’d rather fly or play Quidditch.”
Draco pulled her in for a kiss, and Ginny smiled against his mouth. When he pulled back from her, she sighed. “I’m afraid you’ll think my gift for you is ridiculous, but I had a hard time figuring out what to get The Boy Who Has Everything.”
“I’m sure I’ll like it.” Draco informed her.
“We should head back. It’s getting colder. I’ll make us some hot chocolate and I’ll give you your gift.”
Draco and Ginny walked back into the house to see everyone staring at them expectantly. Ginny beamed. “The broom is fantastic.” She walked up to Ron and handed it to him. “Do you want to try it?”
Ron’s mouth dropped open. “Thanks, Gin. I’d love to.”
Fred and George cleared their throats and Ginny saw they were giving her their puppy dog eyes. “Oh, you know you can try it after he does.” The twins perked up and Ginny laughed. “All right, Draco. Why don’t you go sit on the couch and I’ll make us some hot cocoa.”
Draco walked into the living room while Ron and the twins ran out the door with Ginny’s broom. Molly watched all of this with a smile on her face. She looked at Draco. “That broom was perfect for her. You did a good job.”
Draco felt an odd warm feeling. “Thank you, Mrs. Weasley.”
Ginny walked in with the cocoa and handed Draco his mug. “Drink while it is warm. I’m going to go and get your gift.”
Molly looked at Draco. “She looked for hours for your gift. I’m not sure she picked the right thing, but her heart was in the right place.”
Draco wondered what in the world Ginny had gotten him if her mother needed to warn him like that. When Ginny walked in with a box that had holes in it, he became nervous.
Ginny set the box on the couch next to Draco. He set his cocoa down and gently lifted the lid off of the box. A rather irritated Siamese cat hopped out of the box and looked at him.
“Is that cat smirking at me?” Draco asked.
Ginny laughed. “I saw him in the store window. When I walked by he smirked at me. Then when I went inside the store owner told me he was aloof and liked to taunt the other animals.”
Draco looked at Ginny. “You’re going to say he reminded you of me, aren’t you?”
Ginny chuckled. “Yes, look at his coloring and his eyes. If I didn’t know better I’d say he was you in Animagus form.”
The cat walked up to Draco and sniffed him. Draco had never had a pet, so he wasn’t sure what to do. He tentatively reached out and scratched the cat on the top of the head. “Does he have a name?” he asked as the cat walked onto his lap.
“Ron started calling him Demon because he likes to play tricks on them if they raise their voice to me. Last night he dumped an inkwell in Ron’s lap.”
“I’m beginning to wonder if he is a brother that my parent’s never told me about.” Draco joked as he started stroking the cat’s head. The cat eyed him for a moment, and then he began to purr. “I’ve never had a pet,” Draco admitted.
Ginny watched as Draco appeared to bond with the cat.
“He seems to like you. The only other person that can pet him without bleeding is my mum.”
“You don’t seem like a fierce beast,” Draco teased. Demon reached out one paw and dug just the tips of his claws into Draco’s pant leg. Draco glared at the cat. “That is not a wise idea,” he warned.
Demon seemed to reconsider, and he leaned into Draco’s hand while he sheathed his claws.
“Do you like him?” Ginny asked hopefully.
Draco smiled. “I think Demon and I are going to get along just fine. I’m sure there are lots of mice in the dungeons that he can entertain himself with.”
Ginny was relieved that Draco seemed to like Demon. “I’m going to miss him, he’s been sleeping in my bed.”
Draco whispered so Ginny’s mum wouldn’t hear. “He’s encroaching on my territory.”
Ginny giggled and picked the cat up off of Draco’s lap. She held him against her shoulder like a baby and winked at Draco. “While he is warm and fuzzy, you’re not in any danger of being replaced.”
“That is good to know. Now, I think I better be heading back.”
Ginny frowned as she set Demon back in his box. Draco took in the expression on her face. “Maybe you should keep Demon until we go back to school. The Manor is rather large, and I don’t think he’d enjoy being confined to my room.”
“But he is supposed to be your gift,” Ginny objected.
“Are you planning on running off somewhere and never seeing me again?” Draco asked with a smirk.
“Well then, I trust you to hold onto my gift.”
“All right. I can do that.” Ginny walked Draco out to the front porch. She kissed him goodbye even though Ron and Hermione were on the porch watching the twins take turns flying.
Draco Disapparated, and Ginny watched George zoom around on her broom. Hermione said, “Ginny, how did Draco like Demon?”
Ginny turned to look at Hermione. “He liked him, but he didn’t want to take him to the Manor. He was afraid he’d get lost. I’m going to keep him until it’s time to go back to Hogwarts. Then he’ll go live in the dungeons. ”
Ron groaned. “ I was hoping we wouldn’t have to see him anymore after Christmas.”
“He’s just a cat, Ron.”
Ron smiled at Ginny. “I was talking about Malfoy.”
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