Chapter 5 : Small Changes
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“Doesn’t anybody know how to knock any more,” he said angrily, spinning around. It was Draco. She nearly gasped at the sight of his pale, toned torso. His abs looked as if they had been delicately chiseled out of marble.
“Damn right you will. Don’t you know how to respect others' privacy?”
“For your information, I believe that this room is where I have been staying for the last two days.” His remark had caused her temper to flare up.
“Mother. I have to have a talk with that woman right now!” He stormed off, with an air of annoyance, but somehow he stilled manage to pull of the “cool” look he always had.
Left alone, Hermione decided to wait quietly on the bed until the situation had been sorted out.
Arguing voices grew louder as they neared the doorway. “But Mother, she’s… she’s… filthy! How could you allow her to stay in my bedroom?”
“She is our guest, and besides it was only for one night.” Narcissa’s voice sounded strained yet patient.
“Our guest, my arse! More like prisoner. Why isn’t she in the dungeons or perhaps in the house elves quarters? That would be more fitting.”
“The Dark Lord has requested that we treat her kindly, and we shall do as he requests. Would you prefer to be his next ‘experiment’?”
“Not at all, but why my room?”
“Why not your room? We want her to feel welcomed, don’t we?”
Draco muttered something under his breath.
“Draco! Don’t say such things! I do not know what your father has taught you, but I will not tolerate such language in my house.” At this point the door burst open, revealing a scolding Narcissa Malfoy and a belittled Draco Malfoy. “For that you will be the one sleeping in the house elves’ quarters!”
“Mother!” Draco was outraged.
“Get changed and head down there now! I will know if you don’t,” Narcissa warned. Her voice suddenly softened and she said, “Miss Granger, let us take a short walk while my sorry-excuse-for-a-son finishes up.”
The pair exited the room, leaving Draco to change sulkily. “I’m truly sorry about Draco’s behavior; Merlin knows I raised him to act better than that. You are welcome to stay in Draco’s room for as long as you would like, or, if you prefer, I can arrange for another room to be readied for you,”
“I don’t want to impose upon your hospitality, but I feel that I would be more comfortable in a different room if that is convenient.”
“Not a problem at all, dear. I’ll set the house elves on it right away.”
“Don’t trouble them. I can move my own belongings.”
“Are you sure? It’s no trouble.” Hermione nodded. “Well then, let us go see if Draco has left yet so that we may gather your belongings.”
The two turned and walked back to Draco’s room. When Narcissa’s demanding knock received no answer, Hermione entered the room and quickly gathered her meager belongings. Then she followed Lady Malfoy to the door of her new room.
Meanwhile, in the house elves’ quarters, Draco Malfoy was grumbling about traitor mothers and over-exuberant house elves. A few blankets and towels were laid down as a make-shift bed. As he tossed and turned, Draco couldn’t help but feel slightly regretful of his earlier actions, if only because he would have had a luxurious bed to sleep upon after a hard mission. When he drifted off to sleep, his dreams were filled with red eyes, dying screams, and eerily cold voices.
Lady Malfoy stormed through the halls of Malfoy Manor in search of her husband. When she entered his study, she began to scream at her husband who was lounging in his chair. “You …you … you … traitor! I thought we agreed that Draco mustn’t grow up to be like you.”
Unaffected by his wife’s tantrum, Lucius Malfoy replied coolly, “I believe we did agree on that.”
“Then why is he disrespecting our visitor by calling her dirty-blooded? I certainly did not teach him that.”
“My dear, I believe that there has been a misunderstanding.”
“A misunderstanding?!? How is it possible to misunderstand that I want my son to live a good life?”
“No dear, I believe the misunderstanding has been on your part. You see, I want my son to be greater than me. I am only a mere servant following my lord’s orders. I wish Draco to be the one giving the orders.”
Narcissa’s eyes flashed with anger. “So you’ve been teaching him to follow the Dark Lord’s ways?”
“No, my dear,” Master Malfoy responded gently, as if conversing with a small child. “I am teaching him the way to become more powerful than the Dark Lord. I believe that soon His Darkness will be overtaken by the Potter boy, so I am preparing the way for Draco to take his place and continue his work on an even higher scale - destroying all muggle-borns and muggles.”
The woman gaped at her husband for a few seconds before regaining her wits and releasing a frustrated scream. Unable to form a sentence that expressed her hatred and disgust, Narcissa huffed as she exited the room, long blonde hair slashing behind her.
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