Chapter 1 : It's Still Not Unusual
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He was interrupted by the sudden approach of his owl flying through the window, delivering a large official looking envelope with his name on it. Draco tore it open and eagerly read the official acknowledgement of the news he had been expecting for quite some time; that he had been selected to be Head Boy for the upcoming school year at Hogwarts.
“My father will hear of this,” he told himself with a grin as paused briefly to put a shirt on before running down the towering spiral staircase into the grand foyer of Malfoy Manor, very eager to share the exciting news with his parents.
As he ran through the corridor the family house elf approached him and announced, “I have washed your shirts as you requested, Master Draco.”
Draco grabbed the shirts, examined them closely, and then threw them on the ground in disgust. “They’re still wrinkled. My father will hear of this!” he said with disgust as he ran off.
When Draco arrived downstairs, he was shocked to see his parents, Lucius and Narcissa, sitting on a couch with very concerned expressions. They were entertaining two uncomfortable looking guests on the adjacent couch, who Draco soon recognized as his classmate Dean Thomas and his mother.
“What’s going on here?” Draco asked quizzically.
Lucius hesitated dramatically, struggling to find the right words as Narcissa gently touched his arm for support, “Draco, I don’t know how to say this, but you were adopted. Your real mother is sitting in front of you.”
Draco’s jaw dropped and his orbs opened wide, becoming even more orbital, “But…why? How is that possible?”
“You see you and Dean are actually twins,” Lucius explained, “You had to be separated at birth, your birth parents gave you to us to raise, but now that you are of age, it is time for you to learn the truth.”
Draco reeled in shock, “But does this mean…?”
Lucius buried his face in hands, “Yes, Draco, you are actually a Muggle born.”
Draco nodded, acquiescing to his fate.
Finally, Mrs. Thomas spoke up, “Draco, your true name is Nebuchadnezzar Hammurabi Charlemagne Apollo Thomas, but we can just call you Ned to make it easy.”
“But I still don’t understand, why were we separated at birth? And why I am finding out now? What was the point of this whole charade?” Draco objected.
Lucius struggled to explain, “Well you see, there was some sort of danger …or something having to do with Voldemort… well alright, that doesn’t really make sense, but you just need to go with it.”
Draco struggled to process this new information, “But how is this genetically possible? I mean, I’m a pasty albino, and you guys, well…”
“There was a glamour charm placed on you as a baby to hide your true appearance,” Narcissa explained, “If you like we can remove the charm now and show you what you really look like.”
Seeing no reason to doubt this, Draco, or Ned rather, nodded his assent. A thick tension filled the air as Narcissa waved her wand and Dra-Ned felt his body transform. Perplexed by the looks of shock on all those around him, Ned ran towards the mirror to see his reflection. He was stunned to realize that he had grown slightly taller, his skin tone had darkened to reflect his African heritage, and he now had a moustache. His wardrobe had changed as well, and he was now wearing a white button down shirt with a pocket protector, a yellow cardigan jumper, and brightly colored plaid trousers.
“Dude, you look just like Carlton!” Dean exclaimed, finally breaking his silence.
“Who’s Carlton?” Ned inquired.
“From The Fresh Prince of Bel Air,” Dean explained, “You still have much to learn.”
Narcissa explained further, “The charm changed your whole personality as well. Your true persona is actually a kind hearted bookish nerd. You’ll probably even be resorted into Ravenclaw. So basically, your characterization in this story doesn’t resemble Draco Malfoy at all.”
“This is so cool! I’m going to miss Malfoy Manor, but I can’t wait to spend time with my new family!” Draco proclaimed, helping to prove Narcissa’s point.
The Thomas family then got up to depart, with Ned of course going with them, because he was all too willing to accept this story and completely turn his back on the family, friends, and ideals he had grown up with.
“I still can’t believe my own brother grew up with those Death Eaters,” Dean observed as they walked out to their portkey, “the same people that killed my father and a lot of my friends, forced me to go on the run like a criminal, and then imprisoned and tortured me.”
“That is a lot of bad things, I understand if you’re still mad at me,” said Ned in his newfound sympathetic attitude.
“Nah, it’s all good, bro,” Dean responded as he slapped his brother on the back.
They gathered together and took a portkey back to their modest home in East London, which Ned was very impressed with nonetheless. Dean took him up to his room, where they would now be sharing a bunk bed. Ned climbed up to the top bunk, looking around in awe at the West Ham posters that adorned the walls, having now gained a full understanding of the rules of football.
He reached for his quill and scrawled out a quick note to his best friend Goyle.
I have had the most amazing summer. You won’t believe what happened! You remember Dean Thomas from Gryffindor? Well it turns out he’s my twin brother! Yes, I know. I actually look completely different now, and I enclosed a picture so you can see what I look like. I can’t wait to get back to Hogwarts so we can all be the best of friends now!
Ned Thomas (aka the sexy beast formerly known as Draco Malfoy)
Ned sent his owl flying out the window with the message, and moments later the owl returned with Goyle’s response.
Cool story bro. Goyle is hungry!!
Dean and Ned then spent the next few hours catching up and experiencing some brotherly bonding time, and later in the day, Dean’s best mate Seamus Finnegan arrived for a visit.
“Seamus, this is my twin brother Ned, he used to be Draco Malfoy,” Dean explained un-ironically.
“That’s cool, you can hang out with us now, Ned,” said Seamus, who for some reason didn’t question the situation at all.
They prepared to leave the house as Ned curiously asked where they were going.
“We’re going to introduce you to the Muggle tradition known as ‘clubbing,’” Dean explained.
“Do I need to wear something more stylish than this?” asked Ned, still wearing his bright yellow cardigan.
“No, you’re good, mate,” said Seamus with a snicker.
The three of them apparated in a trendy neighborhood in London outside a popular club, quickly shooting some confounding charms at the bouncers so they could gain entry without waiting in line.
They walked inside to a very dark room whose only light was provided by flashing strobes and a giant disco ball hanging from the ceiling. They could feel the vibrations from the heavy bass of the popular hip hop music being played by the DJ.
“Excuse me, pardon me, excuse me,” Ned continuously said as they pushed their way through the heavy crowd.
Finally they made their way to the dance floor, where a large amount of young people were out enjoying themselves.
“So this is the club scene, what do you think so far?” Dean inquired.
“It’s really loud and crowded,” Ned answered uncomfortably.
“You just need to let loose and enjoy yourself, mate,” said Seamus.
Dean and Seamus made their way to the center of the dance floor where they skillfully busted some moves, in perfect synchronization with the music. Ned attempted to bob his head and flail his arms around with the beat, but he felt totally awkward and uncomfortable and quietly excused himself from the dance circle and went to find a seat at the bar.
As he watched the odd gyrations of those around him, he came to the realization that he was now bored out of his mind. Seeing nothing else to do, he pulled out a book and began to read. It was only then that he noticed the familiar bushy brown hair of the girl sitting next to him, who happened to be reading a book of her own.
“I, for one, find loud noises and crowds absolutely insufferable,” she said with a coy grin.
“Oh, I know,” Ned commiserated, “There’s all these people bumping into you and spilling their drinks on you…”
“…And you can’t even hear yourself think,” they said in unison, as they put down their books and began to realize that they might be having a moment.
“You’re Hermione Granger!” he blurted out when he finally recognized her.
“And who are you again? She asked.
“Well my new name is Ned Thomas. It’s a long story, but I used to be Draco Malfoy,” he explained.
Hermione at first laughed dismissively, not believing the tale. But then she looked closer and noticed the one feature of Ned’s that had remained completely the same, his round, glowing, silvery orbs.
“Wow, Draco, I mean Ned, I never would have associated with a filthy pureblood prat like yourself, but now that you’re actually a muggle born, this might actually happen. Not to mention that I now have curves in all the right places, as I’m sure you noticed,” Hermione proclaimed.
Ned looked down in embarrassment, of course he had noticed. While he awkwardly stared at the floor, he completely missed Seamus placing a stunning spell on the DJ and gaining control of the music himself.
“Attention all my homies out there, this one is going out to my brother from another mother, Mr. Ned Thomas!” Seamus announced on the microphone.
Seamus and Dean began to chant, “Ned! Ned! Ned!” and gradually the whole club joined in with them as they formed a circle around the open dance floor.
Ned got up and nervously walked towards the dance floor as Hermione playfully egged him on. When he arrived, a song from a much different generation than the previous musical selection came over the speakers, and Ned soon heard the strangely familiar lyrics, “It’s not unusual to be loved by anyone…”
Greatly buoyed by the choice in music, Ned swayed his hips back and forth as wildly and enthusiastically flailed his arms back and forth in either direction. The crowd roared in approval as they began to copy his epic dance moves and confirm that he had started a trend.
Suddenly, the room seemed to come to a halt as Hermione pushed her way through the crowd. Ned paused and stared at Hermione, the reflection of the disco ball giving an extra gleam to his orbs. They stood facing each other for a very tense moment, staring deeply into each other’s orbs as the whole club seemed to be watching them.
Finally, Ned had the courage to ask, “Hermione, may I have this dance?”
“Yes, a thousand times yes!” Hermione proclaimed as she dramatically leaped into his arms in slow motion.
Ned and Hermione proceeded to dance the night away, blissfully entering into an alternate world where pesky details like the existence of Ron Weasley and Astoria Greengrass were completely irrelevant. They looked forward to an epically awesome school year which would surely include sharing a dorm as Head Boy, and Head Girl, plenty of dates in Hogsmeade, and probably never going to class at all. They were witnesses to the unstoppable power of dramatic teenage romance.
A/N: The story title and song lyrics are from "It's Not Unusual" by Tom Jones. I do not own any characters you recognize.