Chapter 27 : Chapter Twenty-Six: Tea Time.
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Hermione glared at Draco as she lay next to him in bed the next morning. “You have to tell Pansy that what she is trying to do is not okay,” she urged sternly. “It’s completely immature and inappropriate. Friends don’t do that to one another.”
“Sweetheart, just drop it,” Draco sighed, annoyed. She had been going on for a half an hour. “She didn’t get away with it. It doesn’t matter.”
Hermione crossed her arms. “Draco,” she continued firmly, “you should at least tell Blaise so he can talk to her. She could have ruined your life!”
Draco pulled the pillow out from underneath his head and covered his face with it. “I don’t need the drama,” he mumbled. “I just want to put it behind me.”
“What if she tries to do something else?”
Draco pulled the pillow off and looked at her. “That’s when I kill her.”
Hermione rolled her eyes. “I’m serious!”
Draco sighed and sat up, pulling Hermione toward him. “She won’t. I don’t think Astoria’s stupid enough to listen to Pansy anymore. Don’t worry. It’s over and done with. I want to focus on us. I plan on acting as though Pansy and Astoria don’t exist from here on in.”
“She’s dating your best friend,” Hermione said practically.
Draco shrugged. “I’m not too worried about running into her.” He kissed her on the forehead and made to get off the bed. He pulled on his pants and sat back on the edge of the bed to pull on his socks.
Hermione cleared her throat. “What went through your mind when you first thought she was pregnant?” Hermione asked quietly.
Draco turned to look at her and found her avoiding his gaze. He snorted a laugh. “I ran for my life and got more drunk than I have in my life.”
“I thought you wanted children?” she asked, looking at him again.
Draco sighed. “If this was a year ago, I would have been thrilled if she was pregnant. We would have been together and we would have gotten married right away. I wouldn’t have a chance to realize how unhappy she made me. But it’s different now.”
“But what if you weren’t with me? Or what if you didn’t love me? What if this was two months ago when we first started this fake relationship?”
“Woah, woah…relax!” Draco laughed. “I don’t know. That’s not the situation so I really can’t be sure.”
Hermione nodded and shifted to move off of the bed as well. “That makes sense.”
“I have to head into work to make up for that short shift yesterday. What are you going to do?”
“Go to work as well. You’re not the only person in this relationship with responsibilities, thank you very much!” she said hotly.
Draco smirked. “How could I forget such a thing? Silly me.”
Hermione rolled her eyes and walked into the bathroom, snapping the door shut behind her.
“Hey!” Draco called. “What do you say about one final romp before we go on with our adult responsibilities for the day?”
“I say go have that final romp with yourself! I’m going to be late if I waste another minute!” she retorted.
Draco smirked. “You are a cheeky little thing, aren’t you?”
Draco went into work and headed straight for Cooper’s room. Cooper had been especially finicky the day before and Draco wanted to keep a closer eye on him. He sincerely hoped that the three year old was not relapsing into his previous condition. But as he performed some simple magic to keep Cooper entertained, he found the boy laughing and smiling, trying to pop the bubbles floating around his head.
Hilda, Cooper’s mother, had come in less and less frequently in the past weeks. Draco had run into her on her way out to work a shift at her second job. The nurses always whispered to one another that she had a good for nothing husband. Everyone around the wing felt terrible that she had to pick up the slack at home, work two jobs, and deal with a child with a chronic and unknown disease. But she never complained. Dark circles or not, Hilda always had a smile on her face when she was around her son- using every moment she could to coddle him. Draco felt that he should have another talk with Mr. Pierson to make him realize how good he had it with such a loving wife and son.
A memo flew into the room and landed on Draco’s clipboard. He frowned and picked it up, unfolding it only to frown more deeply. It was an emergency call, requiring Draco’s immediate attention in room 23094.
He turned to the nurse and handed her the clipboard. “Make sure you give Cooper his potions regularly. Call me if anything changes for the worse. I’ll be back when I deal with this,” he said, indicating the piece of parchment in his hand. He folded it up and stuck it in his healer coat pocket before turning and leaving the room.
He ran down the halls of St. Mungo’s and approached the outpatient room wing. He saw a few nurses at their station talking in low voices. One of them looked up and smiled at Draco.
“Healer Malfoy! Always a pleasure.”
“Leann,” he nodded. “Melissa. How are you two?”
“Great,” they said in unison. They both began blushing.
“Do either of you know what the emergency in room 23094 is?”
They exchanged looks. “Harry Potter is in there,” Melissa explained. “That’s all we know.”
Draco raised an eyebrow. “Harry Potter?”
He turned and walked toward the room, knocking twice before pushing the door open. A mane of fiery red hair barraged him. Ginny threw her arms around him.
“Oh, Draco! Thank Merlin!” she cried.
Draco noticed Harry roll his eyes as he stood up from the corner seat. “Relax, Gin. It’s not the end of the world.”
She turned molten eyes on him. She pointed her finger in his face. “I’m not going to relax until I know what is going on with Teddy!” She spun back around to face Draco. “Have you heard anything?”
Draco blanched. “About…Teddy? No. I only just found out you two are here.”
Ginny glanced back at Harry. “What? They just took Teddy for some tests!”
Draco pursed his lips and walked to the door to grab the chart on it. He looked it over, shaking his head. “It doesn’t say much,” he muttered. “What happened?”
Ginny took a deep, shaky breath. “He had a temper tantrum earlier and he passed out! His skin was doing all these weird things…breaking out into blisters…I don’t know. It was so scary!” she cried.
Harry sighed and walked toward Ginny, wrapping his arm around her and pulling her to him. “He’s been very emotional lately,” Harry told Draco. “You saw him at dinner the other night. We don’t know what’s going on.”
Draco ran a hand through his hair. “Alright. I’m going to go see what’s going on and I’ll be back as soon as I find out.”
“Thanks,” Harry mumbled.
Draco turned and left, heading to the lab. He walked into the sterile white room and frowned. Teddy was strapped down to a bed, wailing his head off.
“Hey, hey, hey,” Draco soothed, rushing toward him. “It’s okay, Teddy Bear. I’m right here.”
Teddy’s screams turned into whimpers. “I’m scared! Where’s Auntie Ginny! Where’s Uncle Harry?”
Draco sighed. “Teddy, it’s fine,” he said quietly, touching his arm. Ginny was right, he was badly blistered. “They’re waiting for you down the hall.”
Teddy sniffled, his bottom lip trembling. “I’m scared,” he repeated in a watery voice.
Draco gave a weak smile. “It’s going to be okay. I’m not going to leave you alone. Why don’t you tell me what happened?”
Teddy ignored him, struggling to get out of the bindings. Steam began emanating from his ears. Draco raised his eyebrows in surprise.
“Teddy, I’m going to unstrap you, okay? You need to calm down.”
Draco pulled out his wand and tapped the belts. They fell apart causing Teddy to launch himself up and into Draco’s arms. He began sobbing.
Draco patted his back soothingly. “Okay, kid. You’re fine. I got you. You’re okay,” he said soothingly. “Do you want to go see Ginny and Harry?”
Teddy hiccupped and nodded, wiping his nose with his arm.
Draco picked him up and began to leave the room but a lab technician stopped them. “Healer Malfoy, the tests have yet to be conducted.”
“It’s fine, Henry. I think I know what’s going on.”
They left the lab. Draco carried Teddy down to the outpatient wing and walked into room 23094 without knocking. Ginny rushed to grab Teddy out of Draco’s arms when they walked into the examination room. “Oh, Teddy!”
“So what’s the prognosis?” Harry asked quietly, watching Ginny fuss over Teddy from the corner of his eye.
Draco smirked at the terror in Harry’s voice. “Metamorphagus.”
“I’m sorry, what?”
“Your godson is a metamorphagus.”
Harry snorted in relief. “Like his mum. How did I not realize that?” he muttered to himself. “I’m so stupid.”
Draco clapped Harry on the back. “Don’t be so hard on yourself, Potter. You’re just being your usual self.” He smirked and stepped toward Ginny. “Let’s set him down for a minute, Weaslette.”
Ginny looked fiercely protective for a second before relenting. She put him down on the cot and stood next to him.
Draco crouched down to be eyelevel with Teddy. “Alright, Teddy Bear. You have to work with me, alright?”
Teddy sniffled and nodded.
“Okay, do you see these bumps on your arms?”
Teddy looked at the blisters and nodded again.
“I want you to imagine that they’re gone. Remember what your skin looked like before?”
Teddy scrunched his face up in concentration as he glared at his arm. And like magic, his skin returned to normal.
Ginny sighed in relief and Harry clapped Draco on the back, laughing weakly.
Draco laughed, the tension leaving him. “Good job, kid.”
“A metamorphogus,” Ginny said in awe. “I totally forgot Tonks was one as well.”
“Well, it’s a pretty dominant trait to be passed down through blood lineage,” Draco said, marking something down on Teddy’s chart. “His body must have been adapting and changing. And I’m sure the werewolf blood made him edgy as well on top of everything else. But you just need to teach him how to control it. It’s all in the mind.”
“What triggered it?” Ginny asked.
Draco shrugged. “A variety of things could have. It could just be him growing up or something has really been bothering him that made him really emotional? I can’t tell for sure. He’s a unique case.”
Ginny looked at Harry. “I think we’ll be able to handle this.”
Harry nodded once.
Draco looked around the room. “Alright, then. Looks like you’re all good to go.”
“How are you and Hermione?” Ginny asked suddenly.
Draco looked taken back by her forwardness. “We’re great, thanks.”
“Everything is good after that atrocious dinner?”
Draco smirked. “Yes. Everything’s fine.”
“I’m really sorry about Ron,” Ginny continued. “He could be such a prat.”
“I’ve noticed,” Draco muttered. He opened the door for them but paused, turning back to face Ginny. “Listen…tell him from me that if he doesn’t stay away from my girlfriend I’m going to kill him and that I know enough dark magic to make his death slow and painful without leaving any evidence.”
Ginny grinned. “I should be angry but…” she shrugged and walked through the door holding Teddy’s hand.
Harry watched her go, shaking his head.
“Potter,” Draco said quietly, putting an arm out to stop Harry from crossing the threshold. “I want to apologize.”
Harry raised an eyebrow, skeptical. “For what?”
“For making you feel like you had to protect Hermione from me. I’m not proud of my temper. But I wouldn’t hurt her.”
“I always feel like I have to protect Hermione. It’s taken all of me not to lock her in a room since she began dating you. But you’ve proven yourself to be a pretty decent guy. And locking Hermione in a room is a very bad idea.”
Draco smirked. “I can imagine.”
Harry held out his hand for Draco to shake. “Thanks for tending to Teddy so quickly.”
“Anytime,” Draco said, grasping Harry’s hand.
“See you around, Malfoy.”
“Yeah. See you, Potter.”
“A metamorphagus?” Hermione repeated, stunned. “Oh, that poor baby. He must have been exceedingly uncomfortable with all those body changes. And I’m sure no one told him about Tonks.” She sighed. “I hope he’s okay.”
Draco shrugged and took a sip of his scotch. They had just had a nice, quiet dinner together. After all the drama of the past week, Draco and Hermione finally felt they could relax enough around each other without feeling the threat of impending doom that seemed to follow them everywhere they went.
“Did you talk to Blaise?”
Draco rolled his eyes. “I told you I wouldn’t, love. Please just drop it.”
Hermione huffed and picked up her glass of wine, bringing it to her lips. “I just think it would be beneficial for you to tell him what’s going on so he could possibly talk some sense into Pansy.”
Draco scoffed. “You clearly don’t know Blaise. He couldn’t be bothered with anything.”
“If you say so,” she muttered. “So how was it working three shifts? Was it worth leaving work the other day to bother me?”
Draco smirked. “Definitely. How was your day?”
Hermione sighed. “It was fine. Ginny officially announced that wedding planning is under way. We’re going bridesmaid dress shopping this weekend.”
Draco raised his eyebrows. “Exciting.”
Hermione laughed at how bored he sounded. “It will be! I’m going to be maid of honor,” she said smugly.
“And who, may I ask, will be the best man?”
Hermione scrunched her nose in distaste. “Take a wild guess.”
Draco sighed. “Weasley.”
“Yup, and I don’t want you making a big deal out of it. This is about Harry and Ginny.”
“Yeah, yeah,” Draco muttered petulantly. “Whatever you say.”
Hermione smiled and stood up to clear the plates. “Thank you.” She kissed him on the head and walked into the kitchen.
Draco sighed and downed the rest of his scotch. It seemed that their pasts were always going to follow them around.
“I called my parents,” Hermione said.
Draco turned his head and looked at her where she stood, clearing the plates at the sink. “And?”
Hermione smiled. “My mum’s a bit confused as to how I moved on so quickly. She’s convinced I cheated on Ron with you. She says it’s the only thing that makes sense,” she said, rolling her eyes. “But they want to meet you. Dad seemed especially eager.”
“Should I be worried?” Draco asked.
“That my dad is eager to meet you?” Hermione laughed. “Yes, just to be on the safe side. But he’s a pretty even-tempered man. Mum’s a bit…much at times.”
“I’m assuming you get your temper from her then?”
Hermione smiled and stared out of the window above the sink. “So I’ve been told.”
“So when am I going to meet the rest of the Grangers?” Draco drawled.
“In two Saturdays. They’ll be out of town this weekend. I hope that’s all right with you? If it conflicts with work, I’ll reschedule.”
Draco stood up and walked into the kitchen. He kissed Hermione’s shoulder and then her temple. “I’ll make it work.”
Hermione smiled and turned her head to kiss him on the lips. Draco reached over and turned off the faucet before grabbing her hips and shifting her around to face him. She wrapped her arms around his neck, causing the water from her hands to run down his back.
He shivered. “Ah, watch it,” he yelped.
Hermione laughed. “Afraid of a little water, Mr. Malfoy?”
“Only when I’m not expecting it.” Draco narrowed his eyes and quickly stepped away from Hermione. “I know that look. You have that evil little gleam in your eye right before you do something wicked. Don’t even think about it—
Hermione quickly spun and grabbed the retractable faucet head, turning on the water and spraying him with it.
Draco tried to cover his face but gave up as Hermione thoroughly doused him from his head to his toes. She turned off the water and put the faucet head back, biting her lip to keep from laughing. Draco pushed his wet hair out of his eyes and glared at Hermione.
“Sometimes, I think you’re a child.”
Hermione grinned at him. “Why’s that?”
Draco threw his arms up. “No idea. Just a feeling I get sometimes.” His arms fell back to his sides and emanated a loud, wet, slapping sound.
Hermione covered her mouth with her hand and began to laugh loudly. “You look hilarious!”
“I’m glad you’re getting a kick out of this,” Draco drawled. “I’m soaking wet, Hermione!”
“It’s like that time you almost drowned me in your lake when you forced me to go flying. I guess you can call us even.”
Draco’s eyes widened. “Almost drowned you? Forced you to go flying? You’re being a bit dramatic, don’t you think?”
Hermione shrugged. “That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.”
Draco smirked and shook his head slowly. “You are a naughty little thing and you need a good spanking.”
Hermione’s eyes widened. “No,” she said firmly, putting her arms out to shield herself from him. “No, Draco. I am not into that sort of thing!”
Draco stepped toward her grabbed her around the waist as she tried to flee from him. He threw her over his shoulder, ignoring her loud threats. He smacked her on the ass as he headed toward the living room, leaving a wet handprint on her grey skirt.
“Stop!” she cried, trying to keep his hand away from her backside. He spanked her again; then once more.
Hermione squealed in indignation as she laughed.
Draco froze and looked up to find his parents standing properly in front of him. “Mother. Father. What are you doing here?”
Hermione frantically struggled in Draco’s arms until he realized he was still carrying her and quickly put her down on her feet. She righted herself, smoothing down her skirt.
“Mr. and Mrs. Malfoy! Hi!”
Narcissa pursed her lips and looked down at the floor. Lucius seemed to be inspecting the ceiling.
“I didn’t hear you knock,” Draco said evenly. “When did you get here?”
Lucius cleared his throat once more and looked at his son. “When we got here is of no importance. However, I do wish we got here a bit later,” he drawled.
Draco glanced at Hermione to find her blushing. “I assure you father, any later and you’d wish you didn’t come at all.”
Hermione slapped him on the arm and glared at him with wide eyes. “You’re so inappropriate,” she hissed.
Draco smirked and ignored her. “How can I help you, father?”
Lucius exchanged looks with his wife. “We wished to stop by for some tea. We hadn’t seen you in a while. We could come back another day.” He bowed his head and turned to leave.
“No!” Hermione said quickly. “Please, stay. I could have tea ready in no time at all.”
Draco forced himself not to roll his eyes. “Yes. Please, father, mother, stay.”
Narcissa forced a pleasant smile onto her face. “That sounds wonderful. Thank you.”
She dropped Lucius’s hand and made her way into the tearoom through the dining room. Draco sighed as she pranced passed him. Hermione quickly turned to follow her.
Draco turned back around to look at Lucius. “Why are you really here father?”
Lucius gave a small laugh. “You’ve always been able to see right through me, Draco. I applaud you for that.”
Draco waited stoically for him to continue.
Lucius sighed. “Your mother and I have been told that Astoria Greengrass is with child.”
“It’s a lie,” Draco said simply.
“Yes, well…Pansy Parkinson doesn’t seem to think so.”
Draco clenched his jaw. “I’ll take care of it. Rest assured it’s not true. Pansy’s just a bit bitter about Hermione, is all.”
“Please, do take care of it, Draco. Your mother just about had an anxiety attack.”
“Mother is far stronger than she seems, father. She’ll live.”
Lucius looked around the room before focusing his attention on his son once more. “I will say this once, and only once, because your mother wishes it: you seemed to have a much simpler life before Hermione Granger came into it.”
Draco scoffed. “It wasn’t simpler, father. Mother just has selective hearing.”
Lucius paused. “How do you mean?”
“I mean that she happily ignored all the shit Astoria did when we were together because Astoria was born and bred pureblood. If Astoria didn’t have the upbringing that she does, mother would have chased her away a long time ago as she’s doing now with Hermione.”
Lucius nodded his head. “Your mother just wants what is best for you, Draco. She just happens to believe that your reputation is the most important aspect of your life. She believes the best thing for you is an obedient wife who is nothing more than a pretty face to uphold your name.”
Draco rubbed his hand down his face in frustration. “And what do you believe, father?”
Lucius sighed. “Draco…I would make your mother angry just to get a rise out of her, to see past that shell pureblood women are taught to have up at all times. It took years for me to get her to smile with her teeth, and even longer to get her to admit she was angry when I would do something wrong. Those first years were the loneliest of my life. That’s what I believe.”
Draco stopped and stared at Lucius. “Father, I—
“How about that tea, yes?” Lucius interrupted.
“I—what?” Draco asked blankly.
Lucius righted his cane and began walking away, forcing Draco to keep up with him.
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