Chapter 10 : Parents, Siblings, and Gifts, Oh My!
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“Parents and Siblings and Gifts, Oh My”
Draco took hold of the bars on the gate. He leaned into them debating whether or not to go in. He hadn’t been there in over two years. The place hadn’t changed. It was still cold and uninviting. There was soft music in the air and the albino peacocks were prancing about in the November afternoon air. It was just lunch. It seemed so simple but in the name of Malfoy it always had more to it.
He really didn’t want to go in. There were a lot of reasons why, too many to go over at that exact second. However he could take this time to think about how he was brought up in that house. Anything less than human is vermin, anything less than pure blood is vermin, and anything less than rich is vermin.
They discounted family history they didn’t like. They disowned people for their circumstance and ability to view the world openly. They praised the necessity for a pure race and took part in the chaos to create it.
Draco was staring at the headquarters of the most famed lunatic of the age, which coincidentally happened to be his childhood home.
At that very moment his parents were hosting lunch on the back patio for a group of people who believe in medieval thought. They would never admit their prejudices in public, especially not during these close times following the downfall of Lord Voldemort but they were there. The thought was as prevalent as ever.
Draco wasn’t a saint and he wasn’t really trying to be. It’s just he was trying to be different. He had intolerance for many things but they were his and he wasn’t sure if he wanted to be put within a group. He didn’t want to show any sort of camaraderie. He tried that once and now he has a glowing criminal record.
Draco sighed and pushed open the gate to Malfoy Manor and began the walk up the long drive.
The backdoors were opened and Draco stepped onto the patio. He barely made it two steps before, “Darling,” Narcissa rushed to him. The raised patio looked out over the grounds. It was a couple steps down into the topiary maze before the property extended into flat lawns. The patio was crawling with people he never wanted to see again, evil society folk. They were enjoying pre-meal cocktails, in the magically warmed area.
“Hi mum,” he kissed her.
“I’m so glad you decided to join us. You’re just in time; we were just getting ready to serve lunch.”
Draco looked away from his mother, “hello father.”
Lucius looked his usual frigid self as he stared at Draco. “Sorry,” he turned to walk away.
Draco’s eyes widened a bit, “sorry?” Lucius stopped walking, “After everything that happened all you have to say is sorry, my dear old dad who has a wordy opinion on everything?”
“Perhaps we should continue this conversation inside,” Narcissa looped her arm through Draco’s and pulled him towards the house. She gestured with her head for Lucius to follow. When they were all inside the house away from the prying ears of their guest Narcissa said, “Let’s keep things civil.”
“Yeah let’s not let criminal records and attempted murder get uncivil,” spat Draco sarcastically.
Lucius looked as if he was biting his tongue, “I don’t know what else to tell you… I was wrong… sorry.”
“Mum put you up to this.”
“Yes,” he admitted.
Narcissa hit him on the arm, “you weren’t supposed to tell him that!”
“Sorry, you want me to lie to the boy?” He defended, “Look Draco, I really am sorry. You’re my child and I should have never let you get involved in my dealings. I will publicly renounce the Dark Lord and everything he stood for but privately I still believe he was right. Sure your mother put me up to this apology shit but I do care about you. I’m glad you’re back and that you decided to join us today. I’m still your father so get outside because we’re being rude,” he turned and went back out onto the patio.
Draco turned to look at his mother, “and people wonder why we aren’t a loving family.”
“So his apology wasn’t all that heartfelt but he made the effort that should count for something.”
“You threatened to divorce him didn’t you?”
Narcissa chuckled, “no, your father is a very cold man. I know that better than you ever will but he does love you… believe it or not he loves me too. I think he’s just a bit scared to show it. He’s quite accustomed to his Victorian upbringing. But he missed you and he’s happy you’re here, so let’s go outside and mingle and when everyone goes home you two can yell and get your frustrations out.”
“I was thinking of leaving early.”
“You’ll do no such thing,” she took him by the arm and escorted him back outside. “Don’t forget about the ballet.”
“I haven’t and I’m bringing a friend.”
“That’s wonderful. You’re seated right next to me.”
"Lunch is served,” Lucius announced. Everyone began to crowd around the long table to find their place cards. Lucius sat at the head with Narcissa to his right and Draco on the other side of her.
“Ah Draco, it’s so lovely to see you,” said the woman who was seated across from him. She was wearing a herringbone hat with a large pheasant feather sticking out of it.
“You as well Mrs. Rookwood,” he said politely. These were his parent’s party guest. Rosa Rookwood Wife of the late Augusta Rookwood who was sent to Azkaban in 1981 after being ratted out by Igor Karkaroff, escaped in 1996 before he met his maker in the final show down at Hogwarts. It was a lovely lunch.
“I’d like you to meet my niece Claudia,” she indicated to the young woman sitting next to her. “She’s spending the season with me.”
“How lovely,” he didn’t want to meet anyone’s niece or granddaughter. He was considering saying he was seeing someone but that was a mess he didn’t want to bring into this party at the moment.
The girl in the purple overcoat smiled at him. She wasn’t terrible looking. She was just a simple girl. You would never pick her out of a crowd, he couldn’t really tell because she was seated but it looked like she had a curvy figure. She wouldn’t quite be described as full figured but she wasn’t slim either. “This is Lucius and Narcissa’s boy Draco.”
“It’s nice to meet you.”
“You too… so what brings you to town for the season?”
“I’m studying, I’m having some private tutelage,” she explained.
“Where do you go to school?”
“Beauxbatons, I’m in my final year.”
“And you’re spending it not in school. Last years the best,” or so he was told, he spent his trapped in this house with Voldemort. But a few equivalency tests, an amazing essay, and a couple letters of recommendations later here he was in his second term at University. Although she was only three years younger, he thought this attempted set up felt like robbing the cradle.
“Only the first term, I needed some extra course work for university. The person I wanted to study with is in London and my aunt was gracious enough to host me.”
“That’s so lovely of her.”
Lucius was watching the exchange between his son and this girl. Sure she was of the right station and had child baring hips but he didn’t want anyone who looked like that with his boy. He was back and he had other plans for him. It was a tossup whether he was going to show up this afternoon. If he had known he was going to make an appearance he would have made sure his plan for Draco was present. He just knew he’d like her.
“I just talked to Seamus,” Palmer began entering Ginny’s flat without knocking, “you’ve got a spread in Witch Weekly.”
“Really,” Ginny got excited she couldn’t believe it.
“Yup, it’s all arranged. They’re going to shoot you in the New Year,” he grinned.
“I can’t believe this! This is beyond amazing.”
“Nothing’s too good for my little starlet,” he tossed her clothes off the only chair she owned so he could sit down. “You really should tidy up around here from time to time.”
“That’s what I have you for mum,” she picked up the clothes he just tossed on the floor. She went over to her closet opened the door and threw them in.
“That’s so much better.”
“You should stick around Jeff’s coming. I’m going to the ballet tonight. He’s bringing me something to wear.”
“He knows he’s not getting paid for this, right? It’s not part of your job.”
“Yes he knows. I may have mentioned something about a floral sundress and he said he’d be right over.”
“Yes he feels that way about clothes doesn’t he,” Palmer rolled his eyes. “This is so posh of you going to the ballet.”
She shrugged, “I’m meeting my man’s parents.” Palmer laughed, “What’s so funny?”
“It’s just you’re so casual about this. Meeting the parents is a big deal.”
“Really, I’ve never met a boyfriends parent’s before.”
“Not even Dean’s?”
“I have met his parents but years after we split,” she explained.
“Yeah it’s kind of a big deal. It’s like bringing you into the family,” he explained. “It totally ruins everything. I dated this girl for about three months; she sprung her family on me. Way too soon in my opinion and it took me a year and a half to shake her. It was always like my parents said this or did that. It was like having to break up with them too.”
“I’ll have no problem breaking up with his parents.”
“You say that now… but if I’m staying, I’ll be needing food. I skipped breakfast,” he got up to poke around her kitchen.
“I don’t have any”
He sighed, “What kind of woman are you,” he ducked as she through a pillow at him. “I’ll order something what do you want?”
“Indian,” she said there was a knock on the door. She got off her bed to go answer it, “hey,” she stepped aside to let Jeff in. They traded kisses, “we’re getting Indian, would you like something?”
“Yes, hey Palmer,” he came in and made himself comfortable.
“You’re going to love this,” he pulled the dress out of the garment bag.
“Why do you do these things to me?” She looked at the mass of fabric skeptically.
“Because I love you,” he smiled. “This dress will create a wow moment for you.”
“It’s not worth it. I’m just meeting the Malfoy’s.”
Draco willingly held Ginny’s hand when they walked into the decant lobby of the theatre where they were going to see the Russian Wizard Ballet. He wanted to bother his parents and he knew the way. Ginny was alright with the hand holding because she was trying hard not to trip over the huge train on the dress Jeff talked her into. He only brought the one choice on purpose.
“Oh look he’s here,” Narcissa tapped Lucius on the arm. “Oh my god”
“What,” Lucius turned around.
“Hello mum,” Draco kissed her.
“Father,” he shook his hand. “This is my friend Ginevra,” he introduced.
“Mr. and Mrs. Malfoy it’s lovely to meet you formally,” she lied.
“I’m sorry but aren’t you a Weasley,” Lucius was looking from his son to Ginny in utter disbelief.
“Yes,” she answered proudly.
“Well this is going to be quite rude but what the hell are you doing with my son!” He hissed.
“Father,” Draco snapped, “I like her and this is not the time or the place. We’re going to go check our coats and meet you in the box,” he pulled Ginny away.
“You like me,” she laughed
She laughed harder, “It’s funny to hear you say. So you brought me here to piss off your parents?”
“I wish you would have told me. I would have helped out. You know like worn something that didn’t require uncomfortable underwear.” One corner of his lips turned upward, “are you getting ready to smile?”
“Yes you were,” she poked him on the arm.
“I was not,” he distracted himself by taking off his coat.
“Fine but if this place we’re going to dinner after this serves those overpriced mini meals, you’re buying me pizza.”
“Yeah whatever, let me take your coat,” she turned around so he could help her out of it. Her pale pink gown was strapless and the back of the bodice was low. He found himself noticing the arch in her back. He shook himself and took their coats to the woman who was standing behind the door to the cloak room.
“Hello,” he handed her their coats and she handed him a number, “thanks.”
Ginny followed Draco across the room and up the stairs. She lagged back a moment to deal with her train. Draco noticed she wasn’t with him and turned around. He sighed and went to help, “honestly Weasley, why would you wear something this ridiculous,” he picked up her train.
“It wasn’t my idea.”
“Hurry up. We’re going to miss the curtain.”
“God Malfoy, I don’t know why I put up with you.”
Draco pulled back the curtain to the box. His parents were sitting there and they weren’t alone. There was an older couple and a young woman with them. There was one empty seat between his mother and the young woman. They all turned around to look at them. “Hello,” he said nervously.
His mother stood, “Draco, this is Mr. and Mrs. Greengrass and their daughter Astoria.”
“How do you do,” he said politely. “This is my friend Ginevra.”
“Hello,” she said.
“So you can sit here,” she indicated to the open seat, “and Ginevra dear can…” she looked around, “it seems we’re short a seat, I’m terribly sorry about the mix up.”
“I can see that mother. Seeing as I told you I was bringing someone but no worries, we’ll see you afterwards. Come on love.”
When they were out in the hall, Ginny asked, “Where are we going?”
“Best seats in the house, we’re going to have to climb more stairs.” She sighed, “I’ll help you.”
Draco helped her up another set of stairs, through a narrow corridor, and then up another set of stairs to the rafters. Draco knocked on the door at the top.
A man opened the door and smiled, “Hey man.”
“Hey, do you mind if we watch the show from up here?”
“Only if you don’t mind sitting in folding chairs,” he laughed.
“No that’s cool. This is Ginny,” he pointed to her, “she’s ah… my girlfriend.”
“So this is who you ditched us for at Halloween,” he stepped aside to let them in.
“Yeah,” he shrugged. “She wanted to go home.”
“Bollocks you didn’t want to go out,” he went over and began to mess with some lights. “By the way I’m Matt,” he addressed Ginny.
“It’s nice to meet you,” she said looking around the small room. It was open and looking over the stage. “I hope you don’t get offended by this but um how do you know Draco? I’m not sure what you do but ah, you don’t seem like someone Draco would know.”
“Alright love, take a seat,” Draco unfolded a chair for her with too much excitement. He was trying to keep her separate from certain parts of his life.
“Well he has yet to say anything rude or snide, why should he be a friend of yours,” she took the seat as Draco narrowed his eyes are her.
He laughed, “Yes our friend Malfoy is a prick but we go way back. You get use to it. I just need you guys to keep it down so I can hear my cues.”
“I promise to keep her quiet,” Draco said as he placed a chair for himself next to her.
“Making out counts as making noise,” smirked Matt.
“That’s not actually what I had in mind, now pay attention to your lights,” he waved him off.
The curtain went up and a spotlight hit center stage. It stayed empty for a few moments. There was a loud boom of thunder. The sound caused Ginny to jump. Draco looked at her out of the corner of his eye and smirked. A dancer appeared.
“Did you like it?”
“Yeah it was okay”
“Just okay, the way you were leaning on the banister you almost seemed entranced by it.” Draco and Ginny were standing outside of the theatre waiting for his parents to come out.
“So it was mesmerizing,” she smiled slightly.
“So why didn’t you just say that?”
“I don’t know, I suppose I didn’t want you to think I liked something you made me do.”
“So how do you know that Matt guy? He’s a better side of you.”
He chuckled, “we go to school together.”
“That’s considered way back?”
“He was being silly, we met during my first term.”
“Draco,” he turned to look at who was calling him. His parents and their guests had come out of the theatre. His parents approached them, “we’re going to have dinner at the club, you should say good night to your… friend,” Lucius sounded as if he was trying hard not to sound rude. He failed.
“I had absolutely no intention of saying goodnight to her.”
Lucius looked around to make sure no one was listening, he lowered his voice, “I don’t know what’s going on here but this is completely inappropriate.”
“It’s inappropriate for me to like someone,” Draco snapped.
“No, it’s inappropriate for you to like her,” he corrected. “She does not come from a reputable family and I was just told by our friend’s daughter that she’s a Quidditch player.”
“I’m standing right here,” Ginny wasn’t the least bit surprised he was saying such things about her in her presence.
“I’ve notice Miss. Weasley….”
“Whatever, you are not of station to be with my son and I want this ended now. That lovely young lady over there,” he pointed over his shoulder, “would love to meet you and she is someone who is appropriate.”
“I didn’t ask you to play match maker”
“I am not playing match maker. I saw her and thought of you, she’s very interesting you two have a lot in common,” explained Lucius.
"Sounds like match maker,” he rolled his eyes.
“Lucius I think perhaps we should have Ms. Weasley join us,” suggested Narcissa. “After all it was our mix up about Draco bringing a guest this evening.” She figured if they at least get him in the same room as Astoria he would realize his mistake. Or at least the Weasley girl would feel uncomfortable and realize she doesn’t fit in their world.
Draco could stand there on the street and have a tongue lashing with his father or he could just go meet the girl they want him to. He had a feeling that was Daphne’s little sister, she mentioned she had one but he never met her. Or he could go get his fake girlfriend pizza and go back to his hotel suite and be alone and at peace. He looked over to Ginny, she looked like she was debating whether to stand there and continue to listen to this or turn and leave. “We’ll have to do this some other time. We actually made other arrangements, good night.”
“Draco…” Narcissa began.
“Mother, have a good night,” he said sharply.
“It was nice meeting you,” Ginny lied before she walked off with Draco.
“So let’s go get your pizza and then I’ll drop you at home,” Draco said tucking his hands in his coat pockets.
“We could have stayed”
“I didn’t want to.”
“You don’t want to meet Astoria Greengrass,” he shook his head, “are you sure, I heard she was easy.”
“How do you know who she is and I don’t?”
“You seem like the type of guy who ignored underclassmen.”
“That explains that.”
“May I take your coats?” The butler asked in the foyer of the immaculate Brighton home of the Rosier’s.
“I don’t know if I can do this,” Ginny whispered to Draco as he helped her out of her coat. He didn’t say anything, she turned to look at him, “what?” He had this look of awe on his face.
“You look um…”
“Ah, Draco darling,” he was cut off by the entrance of his mother.
“Mother,” he kissed her on the cheek.
“I see you brought Ginevra,” she said looking Ginny up and down.
“Hello Mrs. Malfoy Happy Christmas,” she smiled falsely.
“Same to you… come darling let’s get you a glass of punch,” she said leading Draco away.
Ginny turned to the butler and handed him her coat, she sighed and she and her emerald green beaded vintage dress circa 1947 followed in the direction of Draco and his mother. Ginny stood in the doorway of the parlor and thought, so this is what real rich people look like.
Narcissa Malfoy had her son engrossed in conversation and she knew absolutely no one there and was quite sure she would be confused as wait staff. She had kept her promise to herself about no alcohol but tonight she may need some to make it through.
“Excuse me,” Ginny turned to the woman who just stepped up next to him
“Oh, yes,” she nervously looked down.
“Didn’t she die in the sixties?” the woman rolled her eyes before walking away.
“I’ll take one of those,” Ginny said stepping down into the parlor and taking a flute of champagne from the waiter’s tray and finished it in two gulps and reached for another glass
“If you’ll excuse me a moment,” Draco said leaving the conversation he wasn’t sure what it was about. “I’ll take that,” he said taking the second glass of champagne from Ginny. “What are you doing?”
“Please give that back?”
“You never drink.”
“I know but that’s the only way I’ll make it through this night especially when my date has more important things to do.”
Draco downed the glass of champagne, “I promise not to leave your side for the rest of the evening. Which shouldn’t be too hard because you look absolutely gorgeous,” he tucked her hair behind her shoulder.
“You just complemented me,” she wanted to smiled but she was a bit frightened.
“It was weird”
“Let’s just forget it and move on”
“Come on, there are some people you don’t want to meet.” Draco led her over to the people he was talking to before, “Mr. and Mrs. Rosier, this is my friend Ginevra.”
“How do you do,” Ginny extended her hand and shook both Mr. and Mrs. Rosier’s, “you have a lovely home.”
“Thank you dear,” Mrs. Rosier said then hid her face in her brandy glass.
“You’re a Weasley aren’t you,” Mr. Rosier asked boldly.
“Last time I checked.”
“Yes this Weasley,” Lucius chuckled, “is a professional Quidditch player.”
“Ah,” Mr. Rosier raised an eyebrow, “so you’re a pass time.”
“Excuse me,” Ginny wasn’t quite sure what he was talking about.
“Mr. Rosier I think it would be best if you hold your tongue,” Draco said seriously, Ginny looked up at him. She felt his grip tighten on her hand.
“Oh calm down Draco,” his father smirked, “the man was just simply stating that you couldn’t possibly be involved with someone like her for more than a bit of fun. A Quidditch player she might as well be an actress or work at brothel.”
“You would know something about brothels now wouldn’t you,” he retorted.
“Watch yourself son”
“Same to you father.”
“Draco,” his mother tried to settle them, “the Rosier’s were talking about going on holiday in the Caribbean this summer…”
Ginny stood there holding Draco’s hand completely uncomfortable. She shouldn’t have agreed to this, especially when the whispers she knew were about her caught her ear. She knew they were whispering loudly on purpose.
“Oh my god, look at her.”
“I know in that garish old Collard dress”
“When we sit down to dinner she probably won’t know what fork to use.”
“Her family’s poor, she’ll probably lick the plate.”
“Her hips look like she eats well…”
“I can’t believe he was so distasteful to bring his mistress here,” a group of women whispered back and forth.
“That sounds wonderful,” Draco said, “excuse us a moment, we’re just going to get a canapé. Come on love.” He pulled Ginny away and over to the corner where there was a small spread of Hors d'oeuvre.
“Such inviting people,” she said quietly.
“I’m certainly trying,” she watched Draco partake in the food. She wasn’t going to join him because she was beginning to feel disgusted with herself. She heard someone on the other side of the room say hello to a Rookwood. She swallowed hard and turned around.
“What,” Draco noticed her looking uneasy.
She turned back to him, “I thought I heard someone say Rookwood.”
“Oh that’s Rosa Rookwood,” he pointed at the woman across the room. He noticed how pale Ginny went, “she’s the widow of Augusta Rookwood.”
Ginny felt sick, “I have to go.”
“Dinner hasn’t even been served yet”
“I don’t care I’m leaving,” she turned and hurried from the parlor.
Draco disposed of his glass and went after her, “Ginny,” he said to her retreating back as she disappeared out the front door. He didn’t bother to get his coat and went out into the winter air, “WEASLEY!” She stopped walking and turned to him, “what the hell is your problem?”
“I’ve been a fool.”
“I’m with you there but what does that have to do with this moment?”
“I’m using you to get what I want and I know that’s wrong but it was you and I figured so what. I don’t care about your feelings. What I forgot was what you stand for. I always thought of you as someone who got in above his head because you’re not very threatening. So it seemed as if it didn’t matter. But I just got hurled into reality… my family’s different. They’ve been that way for over two years now. And this time of year it’s hard with the empty place at the holiday table and all… This is not a joyous occasion but I could brush it off to get what I want. I didn’t consider the fact that I was standing in a room of people who wouldn’t blink if I were to drop dead, I was standing in a room with a woman who was married to the man that murdered my brother.”
Draco’s face fell, he didn’t know, “Ginny I…”
“I want a lot of things but I don’t know if this is worth it.”
“I know those people are responsible for a lot of despicable things but I didn’t know that Augusta Rookwood had….” He paused, “I’m sorry… I won’t ask you to be around them anymore.”
“I don’t need them to get what I want. I don’t like them myself, it’s just my mum… she likes to have me at these things and it’s hard to say no to her. And you… having you here makes me feel better. Just the idea of you makes me feel like I can be better.”
Her eyes went wide, “That’s more frightening then the compliment.”
He just shrugged, “I’m going to go get my coat and then I’ll take you home.”
____________Oh god it’s Christmas__________
Christmas music was wafting through the Weasley home. The smell of food in the air, Mrs. Weasley was cooking a mega feast. There was dinner tonight and tomorrow night as well and Molly was not a slacker when it came to Christmas dinner.
There was a knock on the front door of the burrow, “I’ve got it,” Ginny shouted dashing for the door, she pulled it open. Draco was standing there was his overnight bag on his shoulder, a rectangular gift bag and a large bouquet of red roses in hand. Ginny smiled at him, “hey come in, come in,” she hugged him.
“You seem very excited,” Draco whispered.
“I’m an amazing actress,” she whispered back. “Come meet everybody,” Ginny said pulling him into the kitchen. “Mum, Dad this is Draco Malfoy,” Ginny introduced.
“It’s a pleasure,” Draco said shaking Mrs. Weasley’s hand.
“Happy holidays dear,” Mrs. Weasley said watching Draco carefully.
“These are for you,” Draco handed her the bouquet and the gift bag
“Oh they’re beautiful you shouldn’t have,” Mrs. Weasley smiled. She pulled a bottle of wine out of the bag, “this is lovely.”
He shrugged, “I thought it would be nice.”
“Yes how wonderful,” Mr. Weasley began not into the pleasantries, “Arthur Weasley,” he extended his hand.
“Nice to meet you sir,” he shook his hand.
“Gin dear you take care of this,” he took Draco’s bag and handed it to his daughter, “I’d like to show you my plug collection.”
“Um okay,” he said as Mr. Weasley pushed him out the backdoor.
“Well I’ve never quite heard it flung that way,” Ginny said putting Draco’s bag on her shoulder.
“Heard what flung what way,” Mrs. Weasley said fixing the flowers in a vase in the center of the table.
“The threatening of a boyfriend as showing a plug collection”
“Oh well, I suppose that’s the easiest way to lure him out to the shed. But how did you come about dating him again?”
“Oh well, we ran into each other once and then kept running into each other and decided to plan a meeting and one thing led to another,” she looked down at her sock covered feet and shrugged, “I like him.” Ginny had never said these words before. Although her relationship was a sham she was actually quite certain that she liked Draco. Sure not romantically but she liked spending time with him… sitting quietly and not speaking.
“Well I didn’t raise you to make poor choices so perhaps there’s something there,” Mrs. Weasley went back to finishing dinner. “Then again, you did break up with Harry Potter and began staying out all night with rockstars.”
Ginny rolled her eyes and left the room. This was going to be a long two days. She took Draco’s things upstairs. As she climbed the stairs to her bedroom she felt a bit terrible about this game she was playing and dragging her family into it. Her father was out back threatening a man that has never even touched her or had any plans to. Who knows how the next couple of days would go as her siblings begin to file into the house today from all over the country for Christmas, including Harry.
She dropped Draco’s bag on the floor and went over to the window. She looked out over the yard…
There was a knock on the door, “come in.”
“Hey,” Draco said coming inside and closing the door behind him, “your house is really confusing and so is your father. He really collects plugs? I thought he was just trying to lure me out to the shed.”
Ginny laughed, “And here I thought he was threatening you.”
“Oh he was but I was sort of distracted by the absurdity of the plugs.”
“Well sorry about that.”
He shrugged, “it’s nice that he cares about his little girl…”
“No one’s father has ever threatened you?”
“Well I’ve never actually had a real girlfriend before and that includes you considering our arrangement, and if having girls fathers putting their daughters in front of me and telling me to enjoy is a threat this was the first…”
“Ew, why would someone do that?”
“I’m a catch remember”
“Yes I’ve heard”
“So what’s the sleeping arrangement?”
“Oh it’s quite exciting either you can sleep on the floor or in this chair,” Ginny said leaning on the wooden desk chair.
Draco laughed, “You’re joking right?”
There was a knock on the door then it opened, “Draco how about helping me bring in the Christmas tree.”
“Dad I don’t think that’s such a good idea,” Ginny couldn’t imagine Draco carrying his own grocery bags let along a tree.
“Why,” both Mr. Weasley and Draco said at the same time.
“Well, when was the last time you dragged a tree,” Ginny defended
“Never, that doesn’t mean I can’t start now,” Draco turned to Mr. Weasley, “let’s go get the tree.”
“Wait,” Ginny said following them from her room, “please don’t hurt yourself.”
“I won’t,” Draco said as he followed Mr. Weasley down the winding stairs.
“Just please be careful,” she said as they pulled on their coats and went out the backdoor.
“Quit worrying Gin”
“Happy Christmas,” Bill shouted coming through the front door.
“Hi,” Ginny said going into the living room, “Happy Christmas,” she said hugging her brother. “Oh there she is,” she said taking the pink cheeked blonde baby from Fleur. “How are you?”
“Joyce Noel,” Fleur smiled at Ginny
“She’s adorable,” Ginny said taking Victoire’s coat off. “How are you sweetie?”
“Good,” Victoire giggled.
“Where’s my baby!” Mrs. Weasley shouted coming down the stairs.
“Ginny’s got her,” said Bill
“I meant you,” she grabbed hold of Bill and pulled him into a hug.
“Happy Christmas mum.”
“Hello Fleur, happy holidays,” Mrs. Weasley said as they exchanged kisses.
“Victoire come to Grandma,” she took the baby away from Ginny.
“Watch the table,” Mr. Weasley instructed as he and Draco came in through the back door. “Got it?”
“It’s a step up to the living room”
Draco appeared in the living room first, he was walking backwards holding the trunk end of the tree. Bill’s eyes widened at the sight of him…
“Happy Christmas everyone,” Mr. Weasley cheered when he entered the room at the sight of more of his family.
“Same to you Dad but is this really Draco Malfoy,” he thought his eyes were fooling him.
“Yes I am,” Draco answered as he and Mr. Weasley positioned the tree in the stand.
“I’m sorry let me introduce you,” Ginny said standing from the couch. “Draco this is my oldest brother Bill and his wife Fleur and their daughter Victoire.”
“It’s nice to meet you,” Draco shook Bill’s hand, then Fleur’s, “I remember you from the tournament, nice work on your dragon.”
Fleur smile, “Ah, parle vous francais?”
“Oui, J’ai parle francais parce ma mere etudier a Paris,” he answered. Ginny looked at him she had no idea that he was bilingual.
“That’s enough with the language barrier, I thought you two were just bad tabloid gossip,” Bill cut into the charming conversation.
“It’s not,” Ginny shrugged, “now where are the ornaments for the tree?”
The door opened, “hey everyone,” said George entering the house, he hung up his coat not even taking notice of the awkward moment, he turned around, “Why are you all just standing around,” Bill stepped aside putting Malfoy in plain view, “oh because Draco Malfoy is standing in our living room.”
“We’re going to need some drinks,” Bill said pulling off his coat.
Draco sat watching Ginny with her family. He was sitting on the floor near the fireplace untangling lights. He knew he could just use magic but if he did it this way he could avoid having to be a part of the conversation. He was watching Ginny out of the corner of his eye. She was enjoying watching her brother get tipsy over his rum laced egg nog.
“Happy Christmas”, Ron shouted entering the house with Harry right behind him.
“Darling,” Mrs. Weasley came rushing into the room and immediately embracing Ron, “I’ve missed you,” she pulled away and hit him, “get an owl and use it, I don’t hear from you enough… Harry so good to see you too,” she hugged him, pulled away and hit him, “get and owl and use it!”
“Sorry mum,” Ron said rubbing his arm, “I hadn’t realized it’s been that long.”
“Yeah sorry Molly,” Harry said hanging up his coat, while going for the coat rack he noticed something on the floor near the fireplace or more like someone.
Ron turned to see what he was looking at, “who invited the ferret?”
“Shut it Ron,” Ginny said standing. “I know you both know my friend Draco.”
“Friend” Ron scrunched up his face.
“There’s rum in the Egg Nog,” offered Bill.
“There better not be,” Molly scolded.
“Well there can be,” Bill reached over the back of the couch and pulled out the bottle of Rum they were using to spike their drinks. It seemed like the only way to make it through the Malfoy invasion.
“Ginny do you mind me asking what was going through your mind when you decided to start seeing Malfoy,” Ron had an accusing tone and looked as if at any moment he would be going red.
“I like him Ron and I don’t have to explain myself to you or anyone else,” Ginny crossed her arms.
“Don’t you have some evil parents to spend the holidays with,” Ron sneered at Draco.
“Yeah but my girl asked me to spend the holidays with her,” he smirked at Ron.
“I’m going to go help Arthur,” Harry said going back out the front door.
Ginny sighed she grabbed Harry’s coat from the rack and hers and followed him out the door. “Harry!” she ran to catch up with him. He stopped walking and turned around, “its freezing,” she handed him his coat.
“Shouldn’t you be inside entertaining your guest?”
“I wanted to see if you were alright.”
“What makes you think something is wrong.”
“I don’t know you said you were going to help my father and he’s in the house… Look I’m not trying to hurt you.”
“You got a funny way of showing it… I recall you saying you two weren’t that serious?”
“That was a while ago.”
“So how serious is it?”
She shrugged, “it’s not that serious.”
“You brought him to meet your family.”
"It’s kind of serious,” she lied it was very serious technically she was engaged. “I just need you to be okay.”
“Well I’m not, I love you and your dating that good for nothing bastard.”
“I know you don’t like him but please refrain from talking about him like that around me,” she turned and stormed back to the house. She slammed the front door behind her and ran up the stairs.
“If you’ll excuse me,” Draco untangled himself from the lights and followed Ginny up the stairs taking two at a time. He was going to go pretend to be a caring boyfriend. He knocked before opening the door, “are you alright?”
Ginny was sitting on the window sill, “when we began this I had intentions but hurting Harry was not one of them.”
“You had to know he wouldn’t take this well.”
“I know but…” her door opened again and Harry came in.
“Ginny… what are you doing in here?” He glared at Draco.
“What does it look like?” Spat Draco.
Ginny stood up, “please don’t start anything.”
“Don’t talk to me like that,” Harry ignored Ginny and pushed Draco.
“Don’t touch me,” Draco pushed him back
“Cut it out!” Ginny shouted
Harry shoved Draco into the wall he knocked over the shelf, its contents crashing to the floor. He ducked before Harry could punch him. He charged at his middle and knocked Harry off his feet. Harry tripped him bringing him down to the floor as well. He scrambled to his knees and yanked Draco up by his shirt and punch him in the face.
“Stop it right now!”
Draco pushed Harry off him and climbed to his feet. He tried to walk away from it but Harry got up and rammed him. They went crashing through Ginny’s bedroom door. It splintered and fell off the hinges.
Mr. Weasley came out of his room when he heard the disturbance just in time to see them tumble down the stairs onto the landing of the next floor…
“Hey cut it out!” Arthur shouted running down the stairs, everyone downstairs gathering at the foot of the stairs to look up at the commotion.
“Happy Christmas,” Percy said coming into the house, he noticed everyone gathered by the stairs. “What’s everyone looking at,” he looked up at Draco and Harry fighting. “Who invited Draco Malfoy,” he asked pushing his way through his siblings and up the stairs to help his father pull them apart.
“Come on break it up!” Mr. Weasley said grabbing Harry around the middle, who wouldn’t stop swinging and kicking.
“Out of my way,” Mrs. Weasley began up the stairs, “SEPARATE NOW!” she bellowed as all four men magically flew apart. “Ginny clean up your boyfriends face, Harry kitchen now!” she stared at them sternly no one dared to argue they just did what they were told. She smiled, “Percy dear it’s lovely to have you home for the holidays.”
Draco sat on the edge of the tub while Ginny pulled out the first aid kit.
“Fighting with Potter wasn’t part of the deal”
“Neither was me being verbally attacked by your families friends,” she said turning to Draco, she began applying antiseptic to the cut on his head.
“Ow,” he pushed her hand away.
“Stop being such a baby,” she went back to what she was doing.
Draco looked up at her as she tended to his face. He never really noticed before but she was pretty, she looked great all dressed up with her glamorous face on. But makeup less and in her natural state she had to be one of the most beautiful women he had ever seen. He was somewhat proud that he sort of had dibs on her… well publicly anyway.
She put a plaster on his forehead, “all better. No more fights, try taking the high road.”
“I don’t like the high road, it requires me to ask for directions,” he said standing. He examined his face in the mirror.
“I know how you men hate asking for directions,” she pushed him aside to put the antiseptic back in the medicine cabinet. “Your reflection hasn’t changed you’re still ugly.”
Draco glared at her, “that’s not nice Weasley, karmas a bitch.”
“I know, I must have done something in my former life to be stuck in this situation with you,” she shrugged.
“But seriously are you okay?”
She sighed, “Thank you for asking but we agreed not to get personal so I think we should just leave the topic of Harry alone,” she left him alone in the bathroom.
“Do you need any help,” Draco asked entering the kitchen
Molly looked up, “can you cook?”
“Really,” she was surprised.
“Yeah, I took some cooking classes while on holiday,” he shrugged.
“You can chop.”
“Great,” he took a seat at the table and pulled the cutting board towards him. Mrs. Weasley pointed out all the vegetables she needed cut.
“You don’t want to hang out with the others,” Mrs. Weasley asked as she resumed cooking.
“I think everyone appreciates it if I just keep out of it,” Draco answered as he chopped carrots. Mrs. Weasley watched how quickly he moved the knife along and pushed the carrot slices to the edge of the cutting board. He looked as if he knew what he was doing.
“I can understand that, her father and I were extremely surprised to hear she was dating you. She went through a bad girl stage last year so I figured you were just another part of the phase. Then she said you were spending the holidays with her… so either this is something or she’s completely off her rocker.”
“She’s completely off her rocker. Do you peel your cucumbers?” He asked as he finished up with the carrots.
“Yes what makes you think she’s off her rocker?”
He shrugged, “well she agreed to date me. I’m not that easy to get along with but she seems to manage alright.”
“I think she may like you though, she seems nervous. She’s never nervous…”
Draco kept his smile to himself. He believed she was nervous but not for the reasons her mother thought but because he was there. He and Harry already had a fight and she probably didn’t want anyone to suspect this was a sham.
“Wow babe you’re cooking,” Ginny entered the kitchen. She wrapped her arm around his shoulders.
“Nope, just chopping”
“I’m impressed,” she shank into the chair next to him.
“Then mission accomplished love… Do you have a peeler,” he asked Mrs. Weasley. She got it out of the drawer and handed it to Draco.
“I can’t believe you’re doing this,” Ginny said watching him skin cucumbers.
“Believe it and if you do this, I can go back to chopping,” he looked over to her. She just stared at him. She tried very hard not to do domestic things. “Come on love, for me,” he smirked.
Ginny rolled her eyes, “oh, alright.”
Harry leaned to the side a bit on the couch so he could get a view into the kitchen. Ginny and Malfoy’s backs were to him. He watched her put her arm around him and then sit next to him. He’s known about them for a while but it just never seemed real. Now Malfoy was in the house he considered a home with the woman of his dreams.
She didn’t seem like she was that into him. Not that she was an extremely touchy feely person in public but you could tell when she was interested. She seemed more interested in Oliver Wood than she does in Draco Malfoy.
“She’s not that into him mate,” Ron whispered to Harry.
Harry looked at him funny. It came out all garbled because his mouth was currently filled with a pastry. “Don’t whisper with your mouth full.”
“Sorry,” he swallowed, “this is a phase. I think she’s just trying to get back at our mum for how intrusive she is in her life. So she’s dating someone our mum would think to be a catch under different circumstances. That way she won’t push her to be with anyone ever again,” he reasoned.
That seemed like a logical explanation, he went back to watching them. Mrs. Weasley handed Draco a bowl, which he filled with whatever he was doing.
“If you keep eating the ingredients they’ll be none left for dinner,” Mrs. Weasley told Ginny when she noticed her eating the things Draco had chopped.
“Dinner will be ready soon and you don’t want to put on any extra weight,” Mrs. Weasley warned and turned to the stove.
Ginny rolled her eyes. Her mother was one to talk about packing on the weight. She wasn’t exactly a swimsuit model. The woman just had to be so judgmental. She works out she gets hungry she eats. “That would be a terrible crime, at the rate I’m consuming these raw vegetables I won’t fit through the kitchen door.”
“You don’t want to lose your figure. It’s one of the things you have going for you.”
“And what are some of the others mother? Hair… my cup size.”
Draco felt like he shouldn’t be in the room while they discussed figures and cup sizes. He also couldn’t believe Molly Weasley cared about such things but then again he supposed people without status want their children married off as well. She probably wanted Ginny to look right to capture the attention of a suitor.
“Ginny all I’m saying is…”
“Is there anything else that needs to be chopped?” Draco wanted them to stop talking about this with him there. He was sure she looked just fine. Otherwise he wouldn’t have to pretend to get mad when other men had their hands on her leg. And when they go out he wouldn’t have to pretend to not notice them noticing her.
“No you got through all that quite quickly. That’s going to save me a lot of time,” answered Mrs. Weasley.
“Glad to help,” he said wiping his hands.
The backdoor opened. “It’s so fucking cold out there,” another red head to join the pack announced entering the house, “at least it’s not snowing like in Romania.” He said as he hung his coat near the back door.
“Charlie,” Mrs. Weasley hissed, “what have I told you about that language?”
“Sorry mum,” he smiled innocently. “Good, I didn’t miss dinner,” he was going to go over and hug her but he noticed Ginny and some guy at the table. “Who’s this?”
“Charlie this is Draco Malfoy. Malfoy this is my brother Charlie.”
“It’s nice to meet you,” Draco stood up and reached across the table to shake his hand.
Charlie studied him, “you’re the, Draco Malfoy.”
“Perhaps,” he shrugged. “There’s bound to be another.”
“He’s the one you’re thinking of,” Ginny stood up. “And now we’re going for a walk so you can go ask everyone else what I was thinking when I took up with him.”
“I wasn’t going to do that. Ron likes to distort events… but what happened to your face?”
Charlie snorted, “Really, I didn’t think he had it in him. I know he had that big show down and all but hand to hand doesn’t seem like it would be his thing.”
Draco smirked, “I’m not in any pain so I suppose he’s not that good.”
“It was a silly display,” said Ginny pulling on Draco’s arm. “Come on.”
“It was nice meeting you,” he said before following her into the other room. They went over to the door and began to pull their coats on.
“Where are you two going,” asked Bill, his eyes were crossing he had too much rum laced egg nog.
“None of your business, Charlie’s here so why don’t you guys welcome him home,” Ginny finished buttoning up her coat.
“Because we’d rather know where the ex-death eater is going with our little sister,” pressed George.
“He’s going to go down on me in the shed,” she smirked. Draco’s eyes went wide as she pulled him out the door. He couldn’t believe she just said that. He heard them grumbling as they walked away from the house.
“What the hell was that Weasley?” Draco was outraged, the idea of him and Weasley in the…yuck!
“It will give them nightmares perhaps they’ll stop bothering me.”
“Where are we going?”
She shrugged, “nowhere really, I just wanted to get out of there. We could walk into town.”
“You wanted to get away and you brought me with you?”
“Well I would have left you but I feared that when I got back I’d find you strung up from the rafters or something,” she lead him through the gates at the end of the drive. They began to walk along the road to the town.
“I can hold my own Weasley.”
“I believe you but I was thinking of my own mental anguish. I couldn’t live with myself knowing that I brought someone to meet their maker.”
“That’s very considerate of you,” he said sarcastically.
“I thought so... sometimes I just can’t stand them.”
Draco stopped walking, “then what the hell are we doing here? If you don’t even want to be around your family then why are we here?”
“Because they’re family, you do things for them even if you don’t want to. They’re entitled to the just because response… you should know what I’m talking about. You just told me last week you have trouble saying no to your mother.”
He understood completely but he put that aside seeing as his parents were in Bermuda. They asked him to come but he told them he had plans with Ginny. It was easier because he liked the idea of rubbing her in their face. Although this could back fire on him and he could be disinherited any moment. “I said no to her about this holiday so there’s a vast improvement.”
“What did she want you to do?”
“She and my Dad rented a house in Bermuda.”
“They don’t own,” she said as if she couldn’t believe the Malfoy’s would ever rent anything.
“Not in Bermuda, they have several homes. They have houses in Provence, Nairobi, San Francisco, and a flat in Sydney.”
“That seems a bit extravagant.”
“It is but it’s the life style they’re accustomed to.”
“Well I’m accustomed to beer nuts and cheap whisky.”
“Well you hide it nicely or it could just be the world is captivated by your charm.”
She looked over to him, “you think I’m charming?”
“No but I think everyone else does. I think you can be a bit bitchy at times.” She punched him in the arm, “ow! It was a complement.”
“No it’s not,” she defended. “How the hell could someone being bitchy be a compliment?”
“Well… you say what’s on your mind, that’s cool. And um… I’ve never seen you do it but I’m sure you’ll fight with the ref during matches. That’s always entertaining…”
“Watch it Malfoy or I’ll be forced to kick your ass,” she hissed.
Malfoy looked at her. He had a strange feeling she could. “Well I’ll try and keep cool so I won’t be a victim of your rage.”
“Good,” as they entered the town you could hear people in the local pubs singing merrily celebrating the holiday. It was decorated for Christmas.
“Is this a muggle town,” asked Draco.
“Yes it is. Problem? I don’t want you to run amuck terrorizing people.”
He sighed, “You have nothing to worry about Weasley. Let’s get a drink.” He walked towards the pub not waiting for her response. It was cold, he was thirsty, and he was going to have to go have dinner with the Weasley’s in a bit. Ginny followed him inside, “there’s a table over there,” he pointed to a spot in the corner.
“Do you have any muggle money,” she asked as she took off her coat.
“Yup, what do you want? I’ll go up to the bar.”
“Just ginger beer,” she shrugged.
He got up and went to the bar. She looked over and watched him lean against the bar. She didn’t know what she was doing. She shouldn’t have invited him here. She should have left her entire family out of the charade. She may not mind being around him and although she doesn’t really know a thing about him. She liked him alright. Mostly she was confused, what the hell is Malfoy doing with muggle money.
“Here you go,” he placed a glass down in front of her. “I got you crisps as well.”
“Thanks,” she accepted the bag. She took a sip of her drink, “where did you get muggle money?”
“I suppose a better question would have been why?”
“I like to keep a bit handy and given this moment I was right to do so,” he dug into his own bag of crisps.
“So why do you know how to cook?”
“Took lessons, what’s your mum making with all those vegetables anyway?”
“I’m not sure but she always uses fresh vegetables in everything, nothing canned, frozen, or instant. I’m so not her daughter,” she chuckled.
“Yes you are, you look like her and have her attitude,” he countered.
“That I do, she generally makes a ham for Christmas.”
“Well I hope whatever she does with the veggies is good.”
“You don’t like ham?”
“I don’t eat red meat,” he had a sip of his drink.
She thought for a moment, now that she was actually thinking about it. All the times they had dinner he had never ordered red meat. He knew she didn’t like carrots because he commented on her always picking them out of her food, “Shit, I wish I would have known that. I would have told her.”
“You think it would have made a difference?”
“She probably would have made something else. She doesn’t like you but she hates being inhospitable.”
Ginny opened her bag of crisp and began to chow down. They sat there for a few minutes in silence. They watched the patrons in the bar, they seemed so happy to be there. Chatting and having fun, they were sitting quietly in the corner. There were muggle Christmas specials on the televisions. One had some person singing, they were in some square in London. The other had some sort of animated film on it. There was a deer with a red nose and a white growling fuzzy thing.
Draco turned in his chair so he could put his back against the wall. It gave him a better view of the room. He caught the eye of the bartender, she smiled at him. He allowed the corners of his lips to turn up slightly. He watched her divert her eyes to Ginny and then look back at him, she raised a questioning eyebrow.
He glanced over to Ginny. She was entranced by what was on the TV. He shook his head no, he wasn’t with her. He didn’t think she’d care but it just seemed rude to pick someone up with her right there.
He picked up his glass and downed the rest of his drink, “did you want another?” He asked Ginny.
“I’ll be right back,” he got up and went to the bar.
Ginny went back to watching the TV, she liked it. She rarely got to watch television which was a good thing because if she did, she would never leave her flat again. Although right now was alright because she was just trying to stay out of the house for as long as possible. She turned her attention back to her crisp bag. She should have told him she wanted more crisps instead. She was hungry. She pulled his bag to her. She looked over to the bar. Draco was talking to the bartender. He already got their drinks. She slid something across the bar to him. He put it in his pocket before he picked up their glasses.
She turned her attention away before he turned to her. “Thank you,” she told him as he placed the glass down in front of her. She took a sip, “so the bartender’s pretty, what’s her name?” He just stared at her, “are you going to answer me?” He just continued to stare at her, “I’m not going to get mad.”
“You have no reason to get mad, we aren’t together.”
“Alright then, so what’s her name?”
“Shelia,” he answered.
“I suppose you showed her a softer side of yourself since she willingly gave you her number.”
He smirked, “I’ve never had a problem when it comes to the ladies.”
“Yeah, they’re fathers willingly putting them in front of you.”
“That’s a certain type of girl.”
“Woman,” she corrected.
“You’re so progressive.”
“You’re so chauvinistic.”
He smirked, “I am not, I’m all for the woman’s movement. I don’t want to take care of anyone. Plus I would categorize the women whose parent’s try to set them up with me as girls.”
“Well boy, when we finish these,” she held up her glass, “we should probably head back.”
“Alright,” he reached into his crisp bag, it was empty. “Did you eat my crisps?”
Ginny grinned, “No.”
“Yes you did. No wonder your mother’s worried about you gaining weight.
Ginny and Draco walked back to her parent’s house in silence. They went in through the front door, the living room was empty everyone was in the kitchen. Mr. Weasley came marching into the living room. He immediately grabbed Draco around the neck and slammed him against the wall. “Where did you take my little girl?”
“Dad, stop,” Ginny grabbed her father’s arm.
“Back up Ginny or you’ll be next. You let him touch you.”
Ginny rolled her eyes, she pulled on her father’s arm with all her might and got him to let go of Draco. “What I do with my personal life is none of your business!”
“You made it my business when you announced it to your brothers,” he hissed.
“I just said that to get them to shut up. It clearly wasn’t true because I’m sure you checked the shed for us!”
“I sure as hell did. Where do you get off letting men, especially this one touch you?” He was going red in the face.
“I get to decide who does what to me and if I decide to let Draco or any other man touch me that is my choice,” she said sternly. “I am not a little girl and not that it’s any of your business we just went into town.”
Mr. Weasley narrowed his eyes at Draco and then looked back to Ginny, “I’m too understanding with you. Just know I don’t like this… dinners on the table,” he went back into the kitchen.
Ginny looked over to Draco, he was massaging his neck, “you alright?”
“Fine but from now on leave the sexually explicit jokes to me.”
They hung up their coats and then headed into the kitchen. Everyone was gathered around the table, they got quiet when they entered. There were two seats open for them between Charlie and Fleur. Ginny hit Ron on the back of the head on her way to her seat.
“What was that for?” He protested.
“Because you’ve got a big mouth,” she hissed through clinched teeth.
“Well you shouldn’t have started up with Malfoy.”
“Don’t test me Ronald or I will beat the shit out you!” She glared at him.
“Language,” Mrs. Weasley warned. Everyone went quiet.
Ginny couldn’t stand this, she didn’t comment on the social lives of her brothers why should they get to comment on hers. She never said a thing about all the women Bill use to date, how Charlie may not be interested in a long time companion but is the king of hit it and quit it, how Percy may be a nerd but successfully gets women to drop her knickers, George is sleeping with Fred’s ex, and Ron is still a virgin because the only woman who ever gave him the time of day refuses to have sex until she’s married. Then there’s Harry, whom actually has gone down on her in the tool shed. This was ridiculous but her threat kept Ron’s mouth shut, he was probably having flashbacks because she’s done it before.
“Will you pass the um,” Fleur broke the silence and couldn’t remember the English word, “the um…poivre.”
“What,” Bill has been actively trying to learn French but he wasn’t really that far along. He was also still drunk and having trouble concentrating.
“She’s asking for the pepper,” said Draco. It was passed down from the opposite end of the table for her.
Ginny helped herself to food and then offered it to Draco. Everyone at the table was watching them. They watched Draco pick the carrots out of her food and put them on his plate.
“What,” Ginny said noticing them.
“Nothing dear,” said Mrs. Weasley, “Draco would you like some ham?”
“No thank you, I don’t eat red meat.”
Mrs. Weasley’s eyes went wide, “I am so sorry, Ginny why didn’t you tell me?”
“It just slipped my mind,” she shrugged.
“Its fine this looks great,” said Draco politely.
“So what’s your family doing for the Holidays,” Charlie asked from Draco’s side.
“They’re in Bermuda… they always like to go somewhere.”
“They left without you, what a shame,” said Harry under his breath but loud enough for everyone to hear.
“Well,” he put his arm around the back of Ginny’s chair, “this beautiful woman wanted me to come home with her. How could I have possibly said no?”
Harry forcefully stabbed his potato.
“Well Bermuda is beautiful this time of year,” Charlie was trying to keep the talk off of Draco and Ginny’s relationship. “A couple years ago I did a pick up there.”
“Of a dragon,” Draco was amazed, he didn’t think there would be one on the island.
He laughed, “I was just as surprised as you but there’s this kooky old guy with a farm who breeds them.”
“And it’s legal?” Draco and Charlie went back and forth.
“Yup, it’s a government certified farm.”
“Perhaps your parents will get eaten while they’re there,” suggested Harry.
“Harry,” he looked over to Ginny. She looked extremely upset with him, “please.”
Girl still had it, she was irresistible. She could make him give her what she wanted with a look. He turned his attention to his plate. He wasn’t going to say anything else. He wasn’t even going to question her later about the sincerity of their relationship.
“How’s your face,” Ginny asked joining Draco in her bedroom at the end of the night. It was a long day and they had another one tomorrow.
“It’ll heal,” Ginny went over to him. He was sitting in her desk chair. She lifted his chin up to examine his face. “You know, you really are short.”
“You’re really tall,” she let go of his face. “What are those,” she pointed to the stack of small boxes sitting on her desk.
“They’re for your family.”
“You bought my family Christmas presents,” she was beyond stunned.
“I didn’t think I should show up empty handed. I’ve never really formally met any ones family before but I heard it’s nice to bring something.”
“It is but after tonight they don’t deserve it.”
“It’s nice though… that they care so much,” he said seriously.
She stepped away from him, “I’m sorry about all of this it wasn’t a good idea.”
“It would have never been a good idea.”
“I’m going to make it up to you”
“You can sleep at the opposite end of my bed.”
He smirked, “I hope your feet don’t smell.”
“Same to you”
“They don’t,” he stood up and stretched. “I’m going to fix the door right quick” he went into the hall where Ginny’s door that he and Harry had knocked off the hinges was leaning against the wall. He placed the door back into the frame and placed his hand over the top hinge when he removed it, it was repaired. He moved on to the lower one then opened and closed the door a couple of times to make sure it was secure.
“You’re quite handy without your wand,” Ginny said pulling back the covers and climbing into bed.
“Not really I can do a few simple things.” Ginny tossed him a pillow as he climbed in at the other end.
“Like turn off the lights,” asked Ginny hopefully.
He snapped his fingers and the lights went out, “how are my feet,” Ginny let out a shriek of laughter.
The smell of sweet savory food filled the Weasley house on Christmas morning, Draco rolled over and expected to run into Ginny’s feet but he was in bed alone. He pulled the quilt from over his face, sat up and yarned. The sun was coming through the window and he covered his face to block it. He climbed out of bed and left the room for the bathroom.
“Morning sleepy head,” Molly smiled walking past Draco in the hall.
“Breakfast is on the table”
“Great,” he disappeared into the bathroom.
All the Weasley’s and the Potter were downstairs in the kitchen. They all had knitted monogrammed sweaters over their PJ’s.
“Morning babe,” Ginny smiled as she approached him, she had a cup of coffee in one hand and something behind her back. She kissed him on the cheek, “Happy Christmas.”
“Same to you”
“I believe this one has your name on it,” she smiled mischievously and pulled the box from behind her back. She disappeared into her cup of coffee as she excitedly watched Draco open the gift.
The tag read to Draco from Arthur and Molly, Draco untied the ribbon and took the top off the box. He removed the tissue paper there was a hunter green knit sweater, he pulled it out of the box and there was a white D stitched on the front. “It’s lovely,” he lied
“Slip it on see how it fits,” giggled Ginny.
He sighed and pulled it over his head, it was a little big around the middle and he felt ridiculous even though everyone else in the room had one on. “I’ll take that,” he took the coffee from Ginny and took a sip. She pulled him into the kitchen, “good morning,” he said to everyone
He received grunts from everyone other than Charlie, “Morning Malfoy I see you got a classic Weasley uniform.”
“Yes it’s warm,” he said not knowing a nice way to describe it.
“Oh it looks wonderful!” screeched Mrs. Weasley joining her children in the kitchen and making a fuss over Draco in his sweater. “Sit eat.”
“No thank you the coffees fine,” he said holding up the mug. “I never eat breakfast.”
“That explains why you’re so skinny. We’ll have to fatten you up,” Mrs. Weasley said pulling at the sweater.
“Perhaps but I don’t like food when I first wake up”
“We’ll see about that grab another cup of coffee,” she smiled, “everyone in the living room for presents.”
Draco put down his cup, “I’ll go get the presents.”
“Will you bring mine down too,” Ginny asked.
“No,” he smirked. She hit him on the arm, “I was kidding. Where are they?”
“Top shelf of my closet”
“I’ll be right back,” he went upstairs as everyone settled into the living room.
“Where’s Draco going,” wondered Mrs. Weasley.
“He went to get our gifts, he’ll be right down,” Ginny sat on the floor near the fireplace.
“Did someone get me the titanium watch I asked for,” hinted Percy aloud.
“You can pretty much guarantee no one spent that much money on you,” laughed George.
“I think I’m worth it,” Percy picked up a medium sized box from under the tree and read the tag, “to Percy, with love Percy.”
“You bought yourself the watch didn’t you,” George looked at him as if he had gone insane.
“Well as you so wittily pointed out, no one would spend the money so I figured why not,” he shrugged and took a seat on the couch to open his gift to himself.
Draco came back down with a large stack of presents, “where do you want these?”
“Put them by the tree,” said Ginny.
He placed them down, not bothering to take them out of the stack and then took a seat next to Ginny on the floor.
Mrs. Weasley brought in a tray of breakfast pastries, tea, and coffee and put them on the coffee table. “Who’s going to pass out the presents?”
“I vote Ron,” George said as he reached for the food.
“Use a napkin,” she handed one to her son.
“I don’t want to,” Ron was still half asleep.
“I’ll do it,” Charlie got up and went over to the tree. “What have we got,” he began with the stack Draco had brought down. Charlie handed the packages to the people they were labeled for.
“Draco you didn’t have to get us anything,” Arthur said reading the tag. They all began to unwrap the small boxes and pulled out clear glass ornaments.
“It’s just a little something,” shrugged Draco.
“Wow a Christmas ornament,” Ron rolled his eyes.
“They’re beautiful Draco,” Molly smiled
“They’re memory ornaments,” Draco explained. “It’s so you can hang your memories on your tree like their photographs. Ginny told me that Christmas was a hard time for the family so I thought maybe you’d like to preserve some of your memories.”
Molly’s eyes glazed over, “That’s so sweet dear.”
“I know exactly what I’m going to put in mine,” smirked Ron. “It was fourth year Hogwarts and a certain blonde was transformed into a ferret.”
“How about I smash yours over your head Ron,” Ginny smirked.
“Do it Gin,” laughed Charlie, “that’s the memory I’ll use.”
“This was an extremely nice gesture,” Mr. Weasley said honestly. “Thank you.”
There was a knock on Ginny’s bedroom door, “come in,” said Draco. “Why did you knock on your own door,” he looked up at Ginny.
“I wasn’t sure if you were done getting dressed,” she closed the door behind her.
“I changed in the bathroom,” he was packing up his bag, “anyway… here’s your real present,” he pulled a square black box with a red bow out of his bag.
“You got me something?”
“Yup,” he walked around to the other side of the bed by her and sat down.
She sat down next to him, “The ornament was plenty. They truly were a beautiful sentiment.” She opened the box, “it’s pretty,” she pulled out a charm bracelet, “look it has a snitch, a broom, and a little Weasel. Thank you,” she leaned over and wrapped her arms around him.
He was surprised she hugged him. There was no one around. It was because she wanted to. Not because of a photo opt or to prove something. He nervously wrapped one arm around her. “You’re welcome.”
“I feel bad, I didn’t get you anything but those stupid cufflinks,” she had given him Edwin Phyfe Cufflinks, he was this hot shot menswear designer. They appeared to be the most she spent on anyone. Little did they know, they were a gift from the designer for Jeff. He didn’t quite like them so he allowed her to take them for Draco. She wasn’t planning on getting him anything, what was the point but it would have looked weird if she didn’t get her supposed boyfriend a Christmas present.
“No they’re great, they’re Phyfe right?” She nodded, “I love his stuff. I wear him all the time.”
She shrugged, “like I could tell, I’ve been told time and time again I know nothing of fashion.”
“It might be because your pajamas are covered in snitches,” he looked her up and down. She was wearing light blue PJs covered in golden snitches. It was a set although she was currently wearing the sweater her mother made for her over top.
“I bet they are. This has been fun but I think I’m going to head out now.”
“Okay,” she nodded in understanding.
“It’s just we’ve learned us doesn’t work in family situations.”
Draco felt suddenly close to her, this was the most time they have ever spent together. In the last three weeks were the most they ever spoke in the nine months they’ve been pretending to date. “Also if you don’t have any plans for New Years. A friend of mine is having this huge party.”
“Friend or lackey, what is Goyle up to these days?”
Draco looked at his hands, “Friends, they didn’t go to school with us and last I heard Goyle works in transportation. I believe he drives the Hogwarts express.”
“He wouldn’t do what he was told anymore?”
He looked Ginny in the eye, “he blames me… for Crabbe.”
Ginny felt like a monster it didn’t even occur to her that this could possibly be a touchy subject for Draco. “I’m sorry I didn’t…”
“No it’s alright I mean I am partially to blame but anyway if you want to go just let me know. I suppose you should meet my friends eventually keep the lie well rounded,” he stood and grabbed his bag from the other side of the bed. “Thank your parents for me.”
She stood up, “I’ll walk you out.”
“You don’t have to do that.”
“I want to… I’ll go with you on New Year’s”
“Great, Happy Christmas”
She smiled, “Happy Christmas.”
“Parents and Siblings and Gifts, Oh My”
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