Chapter 6 : I Told you So!
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Told You So!
Tapping his quill against the top of his cluttered desk, Ron Weasley cleared his throat and again arranged his face in what he supposed was a stern and menacing expression. After careful consideration Ron had decided not to say a word to Harry about Ginny’s affair, and in the interests of protecting himself, he wouldn’t say anything to Ginny either. Instead, Ron was going to go straight to Malfoy, tell him in no uncertain terms to stay away from his sister or he would let slip to Rita Skeeter that the Malfoy heir had been involved in a sordid affair. Ron was sure that Malfoy wouldn’t want any sort of scandal circulating about his family and would stay well away from Ginny. Draco Malfoy always had done what was best for him, Ron couldn’t see that much would have changed in that respect.
Ron had already asked his secretary to find out what floor Malfoy worked on, he knew the git was in the Ministry in some capacity, Ron just couldn’t remember what he did.
“Hiya, Ron, busy?” Harry’s voice interrupted Ron’s thoughts.
Glancing up Ron grinned at his friend. Harry’s shirt was open at the neck and he had a pile of files tucked under one arm. “Busy enough. What have you been up to all morning? You look at bit stressed.”
Harry sighed heavily and ruffled his hair. “I’ve got a meeting later on with McMillan, we’re discussing the new training programme for aurors.”
Ron nodded, he was glad he hadn’t been included in that particular meeting. McMillan was the head of the Auror Department and Uncle to their old school friend Ernie McMillan. Having met the Uncle it was clear to Ron where the pompous attitude had come from in Ernie. Ron couldn’t stand McMillan, he was always fawning over both him and Harry, treating them both like visiting royalty and it did start getting wearing after a while.
“I thought I’d give you a heads up, if the programme is approved you and me will be in charge. Can you handle the extra work?” Harry queried, eyeing the mess on Ron’s desk.
Ron just nodded, “Yeah, never mind about all this, it’s all under control.”
Harry grinned, “You always have been messy.”
“I prefer the term organized chaos.”
Harry laughed and shifted the files under his arm. “This meeting is going to run all through lunch time, do you believe it?” Harry sighed regretfully.
“That’s the price you pay for being the boss,” Ron replied, saluting Harry with a grin.
“Great,” Harry groaned, carefully levitating his files in front of him. “Is Rose going to try out for the Quidditch team today?”
“Rose? Play Quidditch?” Ron laughed. “Not a chance, she’s Hermione through and through.”
“I thought so. Albus is really nervous about tryouts, especially since James said he was going to go and watch him. They’re so competitive! Hopefully Ginny will help ease his nerves a bit, she’s going today in an official capacity, do you believe it? Guess those are the perks of being on an international Quidditch team.”
“Yeah, guess so,” Ron agreed ruefully. “Wish I was going to Hogwarts on an official capacity to watch Quidditch tryouts.”
“Me too.” Harry sighed heavily. “Well, I guess I’d better get back to it.” He waved as he headed off, being sure not to go too quickly in case he over balanced his files.
“See you later.” Ron smiled amiably at his secretary as she entered the room having waited for Harry to leave. “What is it, Ursula?”
Ursula flicked her long dark hair over her shoulder and consulted her little note pad. “First of all, we’ve had the documents through in relation to the new legislation that you requested. Secondly, you asked me to remind you that you were having lunch with Mrs Weasley today, and thirdly, your father left a message for you to pop down to see him when you have five minutes.”
“Great, thanks, Ursula.”
“Oh,“ Ursula paused in the doorway. “Draco Malfoy works at the Magical Games and Sports Department, although he’s not in the office today.”
Ron scowled. “Isn’t that just typical.”
“His secretary told me he’s back in tomorrow, he only has today off to go and watch his son at Quidditch tryouts in Hogwarts,” she informed him. As usual, Ursula got the full story before reporting any information back to Ron, that was why she had moved up the ranks at the Ministry with him. Ron readily admitted he would be completely lost without Ursula to watch over him and make sure he did everything that he needed to.
Ron’s jaw sagged open and he stared horrified at Ursula. “Are you sure?”
“He’s at Hogwarts?”
“Draco Malfoy? Draco Malfoy is at Hogwarts? Today?” Ron repeated worriedly.
“That’s right.” Ursula stared stupidly at him. “Mr Weasley, are you alright? You’re looking a little pale.”
“Cancel everything for the rest of the day. I have to go out.” Ron told her, looking highly agitated. “I just don’t believe this, I knew I was right!”
“What about lunch with Mrs Weasley?” Ursula reminded him.
“I’m not having lunch with Mrs Weasley, I’m having lunch with my wife,” Ron replied distractedly, as he fumbled with jacket.
Ursula cocked an eyebrow at him.
“Oh, Mrs Weasley is my wife.” Ron nodded absently. “Just cancel everything. I’ll send a note to my wife.” Searching in his desk draw for a memo template, Ron dipped his quill into his ink and penned a memo to Hermione.
Have to cancel lunch. Ginny is at Hogwarts, so is DM. Have to go and stop things before they restart.
See you at home.
Folding the memo Ron sent it off to Hermione and left the room, hurrying straight to Harry’s office. Harry’s fireplace was connected with Hogwarts as he was on the Board of Governors and frequently left work to go to Hogwarts for educational meetings.
Rushing into Harry’s outer office where his secretary was rifling through a filing cabinet he called out, “Just using Mr Potter’s fireplace. Not stopping.”
“Mr Potter isn’t in,” Ria said, gazing at him curiously.
“Not in?” Ron stopped with his hand on the door handle. “But he has a meeting soon with McMillan, where’s he gone?”
“The meeting was cancelled.” Ria explained, propping herself against the filing cabinet. “Mr Potter has taken the opportunity to go to watch his son at Hogwarts and to speak to Professor Longbottom about the grant he wanted for the greenhouses.”
Ron’s eyes widened incredulously. “Hogwarts? He’s gone to Hogwarts?”
Ria nodded. “Everything alright, Mr Weasley?”
“Why is everyone bloody going to Hogwarts?” Ron exclaimed, throwing his hands up in the air with frustration. Shoving open the door to Harry’s office, he hurried to the fireplace, grabbing a handful of floo powder he stepped over the grate and announced he wanted to go to Hogwarts.
Sitting back comfortably in her chair, her shoes off and her feet stretched out on a little footstool, Hermione chewed her bottom lip as she read the recent report that had been owled to her. The mad fluttering of a memo drew her attention away from the legislation about House Elves she was campaigning to have passed, and she plucked the memo out of the air.
Hermione’s eyebrows drew together in a frown as she read the short note. “For the love of Merlin!” she cried exasperated. “Ron!”
Pulling her shoes on and throwing a cream coloured shawl made of the softest wool Hermione had ever laid her hands on, over her shoulders, she marched out of the door. “I have to go out,” she told her secretary. “I won’t be long. If anyone asks I’m at Hogwarts.”
“Hogwarts?” her secretary repeated in surprise.
“Yes,” Hermione replied through grit teeth. “Hogwarts.”
Hermione was beyond annoyed, she had a mountain of paper work to get through and she had to go chasing her errant husband all over Hogwarts while he was off on some wild goose chase.
Ginny hurried down the corridor of Hogwarts towards the Great Hall, it felt just like yesterday that she had been walking these corridors on her way to lessons, to the library, to the Room of Requirement for DA meetings or going to Quidditch practice. Her heart had always thumped with excitement at the latter two activities, and now it was thumping even harder as she made her way as quickly as possible without running, to Scorpius Malfoy.
She had arranged to meet Albus and his friend in the Great Hall as he had wanted to introduce his famous mother in private where she could meet Scorpius in peace and not surrounded by fans. Ginny now understood how Harry had felt all those years having people staring at him, she still couldn’t get used to it and she had chosen a life in the public eye.
Smoothing back the escaped strands of her long red hair she had tied in a ponytail, Ginny swallowed nervously. Butterflies had erupted in her stomach and her palms were sweating, she felt just as she did before an important game, full of nervous energy, her adrenaline rush just waiting to kick in.
Finally arriving at the Great Hall, Ginny’s step faltered when her eyes fell on Albus and Scorpius who were waiting for her by the open doors. Albus grinned and waved excitedly, hurrying forward to meet her with outstretched arms.
Bending over her son, Ginny hugged him tightly, breathing in the familiar scent of chocolate and bubblegum. “Sweetie, how are you?” she brushed a lock of hair from his forehead and planted a soft kiss against his skin.
“Don’t do that in public mum,” Albus hissed, glancing round to ensure that no-one, particularly his brother, had seen him getting kissed by his mother.
Ginny’s lips twisted into a grin. “Sorry, Albus. I keep forgetting that you’re a big boy now.”
“Do try to remember,” Albus begged, straightening his robes. “What do you think of my Slytherin get up?”
“If the Sorting Hat put you there then it was the right house for you and I think you look very smart,” Ginny told him firmly. “Never you mind whatever James is saying. I’ll deal with him in the holidays.”
Albus grinned. He had to admit that he enjoyed it when his older brother got into trouble. Older brothers were a pain in the neck. “Mum, this is Scorpius Malfoy.” Albus turned to Scorpius who was standing politely to the side to allow his friend to greet his mother properly. It saddened Scorpius to see such a display of affection between his friend and his mother, it hammered home to him how wide the gap between himself and his own mother was.
“Scorpius,” Ginny whispered, her eyes drinking him in as he moved shyly forward to take her outstretched hands. “It’s wonderful to finally meet you.”
“You too, Mrs Potter,” Scorpius replied softly.
Ginny blinked once in surprise. She was afraid to blink too often in case Scorpius disappeared. She hadn’t expected him to sound like that, he didn’t sound like Malfoy at all. She grasped his small hands in hers and drew him closer to her so that she could inspect his face thoroughly. “I understand that you and Albus have become very good friends?”
“Yes,” Scorpius agreed. He felt guilty about that, knowing that his father had expressly ordered that he didn’t befriend the Potter children. But Scorpius was shy by nature and found interacting with others very difficult. Albus, belonging to a big family, just got on with things and found it easy to talk to anyone, that was why Scorpius liked him.
“That’s good. How are you enjoying Hogwarts so far?”
“Its alright,” Scorpius said, sadness flickering in his eyes. “I miss my father.” He felt he could tell this pretty woman with the warm eyes and encouraging smile anything he wanted to tell her. She was looking at him oddly though, as if she wanted to grab hold of him and never let him go.
“I’m sure you do,” Ginny said with a gentle smile. “That’s only natural. Are you settling into Slytherin?”
“Yes,” Scorpius brightened considerably. “My father was in Slytherin, so I’m very glad that I was sorted there too.”
“You look like your father,” Ginny told him, tilting her head to the side and touching his cheek lightly. “Like two peas in a pod. All except your eyes. You don’t have the Malfoy eyes.”
“You know my father?” Scorpius asked surprised. He didn’t recall ever seeing his father in the company of Mrs Potter.
“Oh yes,” Ginny said quietly. “I know your father alright, and your mother.”
Scorpius just nodded at the mention of his mother, she interested him just about as much as he interested her. Not at all.
Ginny considered her words carefully before she spoke. “Your father was the year above me at school, we didn’t get on very well. Actually, we didn’t get on at all, but….”
Ginny winced and looked over her shoulder. Draco Malfoy was storming down the corridor towards her with a face like thunder. For a split second Ginny thought he might actually strangle her with his bare hands when he got close enough.
“Now calm down, Draco.” Ginny strove for control in her voice when her hands were shaking with fright and guilt at getting caught by Draco. She hadn’t thought to enquire of Albus if Malfoy was going to be at Hogwarts today as well. “I haven’t done anything.”
“You haven’t done anything?” Draco echoed outraged. “You went against my wishes, Weasley. I told you to leave well alone when it came to my son. I told you to stay away, but you just can’t keep that nose of yours out of matters that don’t concern you can you?”
“This is a matter that concerns me!” Ginny shouted back, straightening her shoulders as anger flared inside her. She’d had enough of being bullied by Draco Malfoy and Ginny was determined that she was going to stand up to him today and make him face the truth of what he had done.
“No it’s not! Nothing about Scorpius concerns you!” Draco yelled heatedly.
“Everything about Scorpius concerns me,” Ginny retaliated, her hand coming to rest over Scorpius’ shoulder.
“He’s my son! Mine!” Draco roared, reaching out anxiously for Scorpius.
Scorpius stared up at his father with horrified fascination. He’d never seen his father lose his temper like this before. The shouting with his mother paled in comparison. Automatically, Scorpius went to his father, clutching at the flowing green and silver robes, feeling immediately safer now that he was close to the man who had always loved him and always protected him.
“You took him away!” Ginny cried out distraught. “How could you have done that? Don’t you think that I suffered as well? Don’t you think for one minute that I’ve suffered for the last eleven years without him? You had him with you to ease your pain. You left me with nothing except memories that are still too painful to think about.”
Draco shuddered, taking a deep rasping breath to control the burning tears that were threatening to escape him as Ginny’s already had. He wouldn’t let Ginny do this to him, he wouldn’t let her hurt him to the point where the pain became insufferable.
“I will do what is best for my son,” Draco told her through clenched teeth, holding Scorpius close to his side as he began to back away from her.
“What you are doing is not the best for your son and deep in your heart you know it!” Ginny yelled passionately. “You’re just too weak and cowardly to admit it. I’m not letting him go a second time, Draco.”
“That is not your choice to make. I’ll take Scorpius out of Hogwarts, I’ll take him away,” Draco threatened, his voice shaking as he began to lose control of the panic and pain inside him.
“Like hell you will!” Ginny hissed angrily. “I’ll fight you this time, Draco. I’ll fight you every step of the way. I made a promise to look after him, to love him, and to be there for him. You won’t stop me keeping that promise anymore.”
“Stay away from my son,” Draco warned, his stormy grey eyes narrowing to slits.
“He’s not just your son though is he? You didn’t make him on your own did you?” Ginny challenged. “I have a right to him and you know it!”
Ginny blinked in surprise when a new voice intruded into the argument.
“Ha! There! I told you!”
Turning, Draco was stunned to discover that his fight with Ginny had been witnessed by Potter, Granger and Weasley. Potter and Granger stood at the corner of the hallway starting stupidly at the rowing parents, their eyes wide in astonishment, a complete look of confusion on their faces. Draco glanced back at Ginny, she was flushed red with irritation and guilt, she didn’t seem to know what to say to defuse the situation either.
Weasley on the other hand seemed to know exactly what he wanted to say. “See, Hermione, I told you so, didn’t I? Didn’t I tell you that Ginny was Scorpius’ mother!”
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