Draco stood there, in the middle of the room, rooted at the spot. Engaged. Engaged. Engaged. His mind continued repeating the word over and over again but it never truly registered. “Draco, say something.” His mother, Narcissa Malfoy practically begged. Her beautiful grey eyes pierced into his with concern. “Darling, say something please.” She pleaded softly, anxious for his reaction.
Narcissa shook her son out of his trance, and once he focused his eyes forward, he suddenly found himself glaring at his mother. Narcissa cowered a bit and leaned back against the couch as she placed her right hand on top of her husbands’ where it previously rested. “An arranged marriage?” Draco spat furiously. “Are you insane mother?”
“Don’t talk to your mother that way.” Lucius Malfoy warned to his son in a brusque manner. “The Greengrass’ are a nice family, and their youngest daughter, Astoria, was more than pleased when she heard of this.” Draco hated how his father sounded placid and collected at situations like this.
Draco began pacing in front of the coffee table, trying to recollect his thoughts. “It would have been nice if I was informed before you two went ahead and made this decision for me.” He said coldly. “I’m only twenty for crying out loud!” Draco was livid. He hasn’t felt this much anger directed towards his parents in years. “And why must I suffer for their mistakes? They’re the one’s in need of money, not me. I shouldn’t be the one who has to give up my life for them.”
“Draco.” Narcissa warned dangerously. “Please understand their circumstances.” She said. “Marcus Greengrass is an old friend of our family. They are in desperate need of financial aid and this marriage is the only way to do it. There is no reason to be selfish.”
Draco scowled at both his parents. “I will not marry Astoria Greengrass.” He said stubbornly. “I will not marry her.”
Narcissa sat up from her position, to look at her son properly. His tall form, which he inherited from his father, towered over his small, petite mother- but even with this, she looked more intimidating. “Draco, I’ll make a deal with you. If you can prove to me that you’ve found someone before this wedding, then you’re free to go. But while you’re still single then you’re going to marry Astoria.” She finished.
The Greengrass Manor appeared as grand as usual. The marble floors were spotless, and shined as the light reflected off it. Their furniture was arranged precisely and carefully in order to match everyone’s likings. There were house elves bustling around, doing their chores obediently. Large windows were seen on the south wall of the manor, with very large heavy drapes covering the windows. Elaborate paintings hung on the walls, entrancing guest as they passed by.
The Malfoy’s flooed there at exactly seven o’clock sharp, and they all found the Greengrass’ waiting for them in the sitting room. “Corean.” Narcissa said, sweeping across the room to hug Corean Greengrass. “It’s wonderful to see you again dear.” She greeted sweetly.
Corean Greengrass was a tall, blonde woman. She had emerald green eyes, and would dress in formal green robes. Her round face matched Daphne’s, while her perfectly pointed nose matched Astoria’s. Her hair was in a sensible bun at the back of her head, with curly strands falling around her face.
“Marcus.” Marcus Greengrass smiled down at Narcissa as he took her right hand and kissed it. “Your girls look absolutely divine Corean.” She said, walking towards the two girls standing behind the coffee table. “How are you two?”
“Fine.” They chorused, as if they practiced it. The two siblings were sitting on the love seat, each on opposite sides. Their legs were tucked under the other, and their hands were placed delicately on their laps. Their blonde hair was pulled back neatly, exposing their beautifully shaped faces. Each had the same green eyes they’ve inherited from their mother.
Lucius stepped next to Draco, placing his hands on his son’s broad shoulders. “Draco, won’t you say hello?” It wasn’t a question, more like an indirect threat.
“Hello.” Draco said, rather coldly, but decided against it once he noticed the joyous light around Corean’s face diminish. “Thank you for allowing us into your home.” He said politely.
Marcus laughed loudly. “Shall we all proceed for dinner?” he asked.
Marcus Greengrass is what one would picture a typical rich father. He was round and chubby in most places. He wore expensive suits, which were probably tailored to fit his own body, and he had a thick gray beard settled on his upper lip. Marcus had a loud booming voice, and his body shook while he laughed. “The house elves have finished preparing a few minutes before you arrived.” Lucius nodded, and they followed the Greengrass’ into their dining area. “Please, take a seat.” He extended his arm out towards the empty chairs.
There was a long table in the middle of the room with just enough seats for all seven of them. Marcus and Corean took their seats at the head of the table, and Draco shuffled over next to his mother who sat directly across Astoria. “Draco, my boy- why not sit next to our Astoria tonight?” Marcus said with a large grin on his face.
Draco nodded, again, out of politeness and walked around the table to take the next available seat. “Hello.” Astoria said in a sweet, shy voice. Draco nodded in response, not feeling up to talking. The house elves began filing into the room, carrying trays and trays of food to place on the long table. “Thank you.” Draco heard Astoria say softly when a house elf placed her own serving of soup on her plate.
“Thanks.” Draco murmured. They all began eating, while their parents began conversing. Draco sat there, eating silently while he noticed Astoria sneaking careful glances towards him.
“Astoria, pass me that would you?” Daphne said in the same voice Draco remembered. “Thank you. So Draco, are you happy with this arrangement?” Daphne spoke, turning to him.
Draco suddenly felt nervous when he saw Astoria turn her head his way as well. “I- well, I wasn’t exactly notified until a few hours ago.” He suddenly felt remorse when he saw Astoria’s face fall as she turned back to her food. He took his chance to allow his eyes to sweep over her face.
Astoria was gorgeous. It would be a lie if anyone said otherwise. However, there was something about her person that made Draco squirm — and not in a good way. She had the same blonde hair as her sister, curly and long. Her skin was as smooth as a porcelain doll and she had bright, emerald green eyes that smiled along with her mouth. His head snapped back towards his food and he cleared his throat when she caught him staring.
“Draco, darling.” Corean spoke to get his attention. “Tonight, I called you all over for dinner to discuss some plans.” She said, and Draco gulped loudly. “I was thinking, perhaps we could discuss some wedding plans.”
“That’d be wonderful.” Narcissa said, smiling. “I was actually thinking about having the wedding sometime in the spring.” Draco grimaced at his mother. He had barely had time to even allow the idea of being married to soak into his brain, and his mother was already discussing wedding plans with the in-laws.
Corean gasped, her eyes brightening. “That’s what I was thinking!” she said. “We could have the cutest backyard wedding.” Corean said. Draco was suddenly reminded of two teenage girls, planning the most exciting day of their lives.
“Spring.” Draco repeated. “That’s in a few months.” He told his mother. “Could this possibly be put off until I turn twenty?” He asked, hopeful that she would find sympathy in herself somewhere.
Narcissa looked at her son sympathetically, then to Corean. “His birthday is in seven months.” She said. “I feel cruel enough having him marry at such a young age.”
Corean smiled. “A wedding in the summer will be just as beautiful.” She said kindly. “Won’t it, Astoria?”
Astoria nodded. “Of course it will mother.” She said. “The weather should be lovely.” She smiled at both Narcissa and Corean, her teeth shining as the light hit it.
Draco noticed the proper posture Astoria held as she sat at the dinner table. He distinctly remembered childhood memories where both his mother and father would scold him for sitting with a poor posture, or eating with terrible manners. Draco was brought up to be a proper pureblood, much like how he noticed Astoria was. She was like a perfect daughter, unlike her rebellious sister Daphne. Another reason not to get married to this woman had dawned on Draco. She was much too proper. She moved elegantly and swiftly, as if she as dancing with her movements. She knew what to say to elders, and when to say it, and she knew exactly what to do to make others around her feel comfortable and happy. Astoria Greengrass was perfect. And that’s exactly something Draco didn’t want.
“And don’t worry about the finances Marcus.” Lucius spoke, turning to Mr. Greengrass. “My wife and I will take care of everything.”
Corean looked at Lucius thankfully. “Thank you so much Lucius.” She said. “And Narcissa. You have no idea what you’ve done for us.”
Narcissa shook her head. “It’s not a problem Corean.” She assured Mrs. Greengrass. “I’m sure it won’t be anything that expensive.”
Corean clapped her hands together excitedly, and spoke so abruptly that her loudly voice surprised Draco as he ate his food. “This should be announced to the public before there are any more misunderstandings.” She said. “There are a lot of rumors going on about us in the prophet already, so we should have an engagement party, no?”
Narcissa nodded, just as eager as Mrs. Greengrass was. “How about on Tuesday night? We’ll have it in the Manor.”
“Perfect.” Corean said, grinning.