?

Log in

No account? Create an account
 
 
13 November 2004 @ 12:48 pm
Communism doesn't work because people like to own stuff  

....and Wystan's mother's identity is revealed! Shocked gasps all around! BTW, I don't tend to give summaries of each part, but - coralia13 , and any other misfortunates who read this - would it be preferable? Right, I tell a lie, this is going to take four parts to fit...

It was the last full moon of the school year, a week or two before the beginning of the summer holidays. Draco deposited a pile of revision notes on the desk in Wystan’s room. Wolf-Wystan yawned, showing a gobful of slobbery canines and managing to express deep disdain for Draco’s armful principally using his saliva.

‘No, yuck,’ Draco reprimanded fruitlessly, as Wystan laid his body against Draco’s legs and pushed, depositing yet more dog hairs on Draco’s good robes. There was hardly an item in Draco’s wardrobe that hadn’t had a liberal baptism of canine pelt, and it was a bugger to get out.

They both jumped when the fire flickered green and Snape’s dour face appeared, surrounded by dancing flames.

‘Headmaster,’ Draco said, recovering his aplomb immediately, despite Wolf-Wystan’s wet-nosed interest in his crotch.

‘D - Professor Malfoy,’ Snape said, and his slip put Draco instantly on the alert. ‘Could you come to my office? As soon as possible.’

‘But Wystan -’ Draco protested.

‘This concerns him,’ Snape said. ‘As soon as possible, Professor.’

Draco rose from his automatic genuflection, wrinkling his nose. What bee’s in Potter’s bonnet now? Jumping to his tune - we might as well be Weasleys, for Merlin’s sake.

‘Wystan?’ he said out loud, firmly. ‘Lie down. Down!’ Wystan jumped on the bed and let his tongue hang out of his mouth, which Draco had long since decided was the wolf version of a smirk. ‘Stay!’ Draco added, holding up a hand.

Although Wystan had superior intelligence to a common, wild wolf, it was not a human intelligence, and he often described his wolf-memories in colours and smells as opposed to coherent thoughts. Draco often wondered if Wystan interpreted what he meant by what he read in his scent rather than understanding the actual words. He still made his own decisions, however, no matter what end of the morphic scale he was on.

Locking the door behind him, both magically and physically, Draco made his way up to the Headmaster’s office, swiftly but not hurriedly. No sense in fuelling a rumour that there was some kind of emergency afoot. Especially not if Potter was at the root of it.

Outside the gargoyle, Draco distractedly gave the password - ‘Carpe Jungulaum’ (cynical was not the word) - and ascended the moving spiral staircase, entirely failing to appreciate the small Rembrandt on the way up, as was his wont. He strode into the main chamber, ignoring the complaining cheeping issuing from Fawkes from his perch in the anteroom. His eyes took in Snape, who was seated at his desk with a look of molten anger on his face, and the room’s only other occupant, the sight of whom made him stop dead.

The woman’s eyes had widened at the sight of him, however. Ordinarily, this fairly common reaction would have amused and perhaps flattered him. Right at this moment, however, her blatant look of appreciation made Draco feel oddly violated. Her face was older and showed hard use, but a modicum of her former prettiness still illuminated it. In vain did Draco look for Wystan in her ; she couldn’t but be his mother, but only her slim hands were Wystan’s. Harry’s hands were large and square; peasant’s hands. Wystan and his mother had artist’s hands.

Draco realised he was becoming increasingly frantic, and he still couldn’t put a name to her though her face was familiar. Realising she was on the point of advancing on him, he cut her dead.

‘Headmaster?’ he said curtly. ‘You wanted to see me about Potter?’

‘Miss Chang has requested to see her son,’ Snape said without inflection. Only someone who knew him as well as Draco could have spotted the steely glint in his eye that suggested that Snape was very angry indeed.

‘Does she have Mr Potter’s permission?’ Draco asked. The tactic of ignoring her preens worked a charm; Chang’s eyes narrowed and her ingratiating smile dropped off her face.

‘She does not.’

‘Well, I’m afraid that it’s out of the question then, Miss Chang,’ Draco said, hitching a falsely polite expression onto his face. ‘In the case of divorced or otherwise separated parents, they both must provide written proof of custody before we can allow visiting rights.’

Chang stuffed her hands on her hips. ‘I’m sure Harry won’t mind me seeing him,’ she said with a toss of her head.

‘It’s full moon,’ Draco said incredulously.

‘It is?’ Chang said vaguely, twirling a lock of hair around her fingers. ‘I must do another Hair Shine Serum if that’s the case…I’m running low…’

Draco curled his lip. She didn’t even know her son was a werewolf. ‘Wystan is ill at the moment,’ he drawled. ‘We think it may be contagious.’

‘Really?’ Chang said, making a moue of disgust. ‘I wanted to call him Cedric, you know…Harry can be so implacable at times. Wystan. I mean, honestly!’ She raised an eyebrow at Draco, inviting him to share the feeling. He merely stared at her blankly.

At that moment the door to the office crashed open, revealing a flushed and incensed Harry Potter. Disregarding the two professors completely, he advanced on Chang, who had the wit to fall back apprehensively.

‘What are you doing here?’ Harry growled, and Draco blinked at the ferocity in his tone. It was truly alarming, and Draco allowed himself to purse his lips in approval.

Chang made an attempt at a simper. Even Draco could tell that this was a Bad Move. Harry’s lips pulled back from his teeth, but he wasn’t smiling. The last time Draco had seen an expression like that had been on his son’s face, when he’d been snapping after a particularly irksome flea. The fact that the object of Harry’s antagonism was a human being only made it the more chilling.

‘I came to see my darling son, of course,’ Chang said, making eyes at Draco over Harry’s shoulder and not even pretending to be sincere. Draco tried to hide behind Snape, who appeared temporarily titillated at this turn of events.

‘How much?’ Harry asked through gritted teeth.

‘Another fifty…I have expenses, you know…’ Chang batted her eyelashes. Harry looked weary. He shoved a hand in his pocket, withdrawing a money pouch.

‘Here’s a hundred,’ he said, shoving it at her as she reached for it, so she had to step back, clutching it to her chest. ‘That’ll get you to London. I’ll owl Gringotts tonight. Now get out.’

‘Thank you, darling,’ Chang purred, leaning forward to peck Harry’s cheek. Harry jerked back as if she’d proffered a stinger, and glared at her. ‘Professor Snape…if I may?’

Snape nodded minutely, and Chang sashayed to the fire, tossing in a handful of Floo powder from an ornate urn on the mantle. Winking at Harry over her shoulder, to bared teeth from him, she stepped into the fire. Draco thought he heard ‘the Entrance Hall’ before she was consumed in a swirl of emerald flame. Hogwarts was closed to full-body outside Flooing, so she would have to make her own way out of the grounds.

‘Snape -’ Draco noticed Harry seemed to gain no immoderate satisfaction from dropping the honorific - ‘I am so sorry about that. She -’

‘Sit down, Potter, and have a drink.’ Snape sounded tired, and grouchy. This was not the surprise; rather his invitation came as a bolt from the blue. Eyes wide, Harry awkwardly scraped a gate-backed chair over near Snape’s desk. Snape unlocked his liquor chest, conjuring glasses with his wand. Largely ignored, Draco quietly seated himself near the fire.

‘I take it that isn’t the first time she’s come with her hand out?’ Snape asked abruptly.

Harry sighed, and passed a hand over his eyes. Removing his glasses, he pinched the bridge of his nose. ‘No. The last time she came was when Wystan was four or five. I’d given her a hundred thousand Galleons after he was born, to - well, to make her go away.’ He paused, looking pensive and without his glasses, about sixteen again. ‘I gave her another twenty thousand the next time.’

‘So you weren’t offering her fifty Sickles just now?’ Snape’s voice was even as he measured out three shots of whiskey.

Harry gave a mirthless bark of laughter. ‘Of course not. I don’t care what you think -’ his face took on a stubbornly defensive cast. ‘I don’t want her around him. She doesn’t care about him at all, only insofar as getting money out of me. When she found out she was pregnant she wanted to -’ he coughed. Neither Draco nor Snape asked him to finish his sentence. It was clear enough what her intentions had been.

‘You have never cared what I think,’ Snape said, still in that careful tone. ‘So I’m sure it makes no difference to you when I say I’m in total agreement with your methods. I cannot think of a better one, short of - but assassination is disregarded nowadays.’

Harry started, then seemed to decide Snape was joking, for he smiled wanly. Draco had nothing like Harry’s certainty, but Snape’s impassive face gave nothing away.

‘Draco,’ he said musingly. ‘I don’t suppose there is a rule about separated parents needing proof of custody, is there?’

‘Well…’ Draco put his head to one side. ‘There is now.’

Snape narrowed his eyes approvingly. Harry jumped, and twisted around in his seat.

‘Malfoy. I didn’t see you there,’ he said, accusingly.

‘Putting the glasses on would help,’ Draco said smoothly, as Harry glowered. And shoved them back on. Snape held out a glass to Draco. ‘I’d better not. Wystan is alone in his bedroom, and he’s due another dose in an hour or so. I should get back.’

‘Very well,’ Snape acquiesced. Harry hastily gulped back his drink, spluttering slightly to Draco’s infinite amusement, and got to his feet.

‘I’ll come with you,’ he announced. ‘If I may?’ The question was merely formality; but it was a sign of Harry’s grudging gratitude to Snape that he made the gesture. Snape merely blinked, which Draco knew was his form of dismissal. Getting to his feet, he swept out, followed by a rather puzzled Harry, who kept looking back as if expecting Snape to say something.

‘It’s changed an awful lot, since Dumbledore’s days,’ Harry said wistfully, as they reached the anteroom.

‘You don’t say,’ Draco said coldly. ‘If you don’t mind, I’ll cast a Disillusionment Charm on you. As Wystan is supposed to be visiting you, it would be odd if someone spotted you running around Hogwarts like a blue-arsed fly.’

‘Succinct as ever,’ Harry murmured. ‘Very well, then.’

‘Did you happen to notice if anyone saw you coming in?’ Draco asked sharply.

‘No,’ Harry said shamefacedly.

‘Urg. The Gryffindor tactics are as polished as ever, I’m delighted to see. Stand still.’ Draco quickly cast the charm and swiftly made his way back to the dungeons, the scuff of Harry’s boots on the floor the only indication that he was tagging him. By the time they came to Wystan’s room, the fire had died to embers which cast the room in a soft glow. The wolf cub was curled up on the bed, snuffling gently in deep dog-sleep. Harry pressed past Draco, his face soft and wearing an expression of such love it hurt Draco to look at it.

Leaving them to it, Draco returned to his study. However, all his planned work seemed suddenly mountainous. Dropping his head onto his desk, he let his mind wander, wondering why it wandered by Harry so very often. Probably because even now he remained a fly in the ointment, the thorn in Draco’s hand that was never quite healed or removed.

It was by his breathing that Draco realised Harry was in the room with him. He looked up to find him leaning against the door jamb, yawning slightly, his eyes crumpled with tiredness. His hair was beyond belief; it looked like it had recently been home to a family of swallows.

‘If you let me contact Professor Snape, I’m sure he will arrange a room for you for the night,’ Draco said stiffly, wishing he would go away. From this vantage it was evident that Harry had dressed in a hurry; his robes were fastened wrongly, and gaped open to reveal a ratty pullover that looked like a Lupin classic and holey jeans.

‘No, s’okay,’ Harry said, yawning widely. ‘Just need to siddown…for a bit…’ Without waiting to be invited, he dropped into one of Draco’s velvet-upholstered armchairs. He yawned again, arching his head back so the entire column of his throat was bared. Draco blinked in horror at the thoughts that his mind conjured at the sight, and cast around frantically for a distraction.

‘How did you know Chang was here?’ he said, aware that his voice was slightly shaky. He busied himself with paperwork, manically neatening piles. When he finally glanced away, Harry was observing him. Their eyes locked for half a second before Harry frowned and turned his gaze to the ceiling.

‘She owled me,’ Harry said, rather distantly. ‘I came as soon as I got it.’

‘Oh,’ Draco said, equally cool. He took up some marking, suddenly locating an abiding interest in it. When he looked up, Harry was fast asleep in the chair. His mouth was slightly open, and his face rested on his shoulder. Every time he breathed, some of his hair that lay near his mouth shivered. He slept sprawled out, seemingly exhausted.

With misgivings, but unable to prevent himself, Draco conjured a blanket and threw it over him. He shifted in his sleep, sighing. Draco spun on his heel and made blindly for his bedroom.

When he came back the next morning, Harry was gone.

 

~

Please?’ Wystan said beseechingly.

‘No,’ Draco replied, on general principles.

‘Pretty please with a cherry on top?’ Wystan said, pouting his lower lip with the unsubstantiated view that such an action would help his case.

‘Hate cherries,’ Draco said briefly.

‘Oh, please, sir,’ Wystan said, dropping the cajoling tone. ‘You have to drop off the potion anyway. You might as well stay for dinner. And the night. Please.’

‘If you shut up, I’ll think about it,’ Draco said briskly, with no intention of doing any such thing. Owl post was a perfectly adequate method of delivering Wystan’s summer supply of Wolfsbane.

‘Yes, sir,’ Wystan said, rolling his eyes and scampering off to his desk. Just in time, as the door to the dungeon opened and the students poured in, their chatter abruptly stilled as they crossed the threshold.

Pretending not to watch them - all the better to catch their wrongdoing - Draco started writing the day’s lesson on the board. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw one of the Ravenclaw girls - a quiet girl, with glossy nut-brown braids and quite a reasonable standard of work - say something to her friends, while looking over at Wystan. Wystan was sitting bolt upright as ever, his eyes unfocused as he went to that place inside his head of which Draco was so envious. He’d once told him it was where the wolf lived. For the wolf there was no past or future, only the present; and going to that place was an easy way to alleviate boredom.

As Draco looked on, intrigued, the girl hesitated, then took a deep breath and walked determinedly over to Wystan. She said something to him, smiling hesitantly. Wystan smiled back, friendly but not warm. Measured. Draco almost laughed. Such a Slytherin he would make.

Whatever passed between them seemed to be concluded satisfactorily by the time Draco turned his attention to the class, and found the girl sitting beside Wystan - whose eyes were as green as Draco had ever seen them - quailing a little as Draco’s gaze passed over them but otherwise unmoved. Draco blinked, and suddenly a bespectacled boy with a scarred forehead, a bushy-haired girl and a Weasley were sitting there; the Three Musketeers, the bane of his life, who’d always looked as if they were having too much bloody fun.

Impulsively, Draco decided to accept Wystan’s invitation. He tried to think why, afterwards.

Anything to mess up Potter’s day a little more, he thought, but even to his own ears it rang hollow.

~

Draco took a moment to settle his Apparition-ruffled robes, and to clear his throat nervously, before knocking smartly on the bright red door.

The little cottage was gorgeous, if he said it himself; perfect, and most likely magically-up kept thatch roofed a white-painted farmhouse with small, deep windows whose red sills were almost obscured by a wild profusion of flowers spilling from a multitude of pots and trays. The short paved garden path from the immaculate gate in a dry stone wall was barring encroaching lilies and roses only with the greatest difficulty. The lawn was as smooth as a gardener’s dream, what little could be seen through the magnificent flower beds.

The door knocker was the only thing that prevented Draco from indulging jaw-dropping awe; it was fashioned in the shape of a lion’s head. He had to laugh at the doormat, too; he hadn’t expected such self-deprecating wit from Harry. He thought he saw Lupin’s hand in the motto: ‘Warning: Here be Gryffindors’. It was certainly worlds away from the austere, gloomy grounds of Malfoy Manor, or even the Hogwarts dungeons if it came to that.

The sound of running feet alerted him and he had a second to compose his features into polite indifference before the door was wrenched open by Wystan, his face wreathed in smiles.

‘You came!’ he said delightedly, bouncing on the balls of his feet.

‘I said I would,’ Draco said, working hard not to show how touched he was by Wystan’s artless joy at seeing him.

‘Come in,’ Wystan said, recalling himself, and throwing the door open wider. Draco picked up the crate of Wolfsbane with a slight groan. He had to keep remembering he no longer had the back of a twenty-, or indeed a thirty-year-old. A month before he’d marked his thirty-seventh birthday, with a wry grimace for the most part.

Every window and door in the place was thrown open to welcome in the gentle heat of a hazy summer’s day, and though the passage way was small it was bright and cheery. Draco glanced at the pictures and photographs lining the walls. Some were of Quidditch teams and parties; he thought he recognised Granger’s bushy head in one, cradling a wailing infant in a very frilly dress. He stifled a laugh at a gallery of what was evidently Wystan’s baby scrawls; stick men with balloon heads cavorted in fantastically delineated landscapes, their bodies executed in shocking colours that had never graced any skin palette in Draco’s experience. He particularly appreciated one of Harry - his lightening bolt scar obscured half his face - drawn in violent purple. Reminds me of Harry’s face when he gets all angry and self-righteous. We’ll make an artist of Wystan yet.

Absorbed in this pleasantly vicious train of thought, Draco almost didn’t see Harry when he emerged from a doorway, bathed in a stream of hot sunlight from the room behind him. Draco’s breath caught in his throat at the sight, and he desperately tried to pretend it was simply because he was startled.

Harry was dressed in a simple white t-shirt and jeans; his feet were bare. His face, while guarded, was not overtly hostile, probably in deference to his son’s wishes. Wystan was dressed much the same, although his clothes were covered with little symbols that Draco couldn’t make head nor tail of; one looked like a tick, another was a set of small lines that formed a triangle shape. They weren’t occult, Draco knew, but they were certainly strange. Muggle clothing, obviously; he never knew they felt the need to adorn their garments with names - of famous Muggles, perhaps? He’d never heard of anyone called Nike - but there again, with Muggles, not much they did made any sense.

‘Lunch is nearly ready,’ Harry said, scratching his nose in a preoccupied way. ‘You’re staying, Malfoy?’

‘If that’s all right with you,’ Draco said carefully, well aware of Wystan making encouraging faces at his father behind Draco’s back.

‘It’s fine,’ Harry said curtly. He frowned at his son. ‘Oh. Would you like a - beer, Malfoy?’

A small finger poked Draco in the small of his back. Draco jumped. ‘Um, certainly. Thank you, Potter.’

‘Come on, the sitting room’s this way,’ Wystan said, tugging on Draco’s arm. He led him into a cosy, almost circular room, full of worn sofas upholstered in rather glaring red brocade. Pot plants were dotted around the walls, which were literally sagging with the weight of yet more photographs. One wall, Draco was pleased to see, was occupied by floor-to-ceiling bookshelves, with volumes stacked haphazardly, sharing space with ornaments and toys. At Wystan’s urging, Draco sat down on a cracked leather armchair, placing the crate carefully on the floor.

Harry reappeared, holding two icy green bottles. He handed one to Draco, who squinted at the name on the label. Carlsberg. Not a wizarding brand, that’s for sure. Potter clearly loves his Muggle trash.

Wystan sprung up from his position on the floor. ‘I’ll go put this in my room,’ he said, hefting the crate with care but no apparent discomfort. ‘Don’t kill each other in my absence,’ he said, softly, as he left.

Draco rather distractedly took a gulp of chilled beer. ‘This isn’t too bad, for Muggle lager,’ he conceded.

Harry rolled his eyes. ‘Hello? It is probably the best lager in the world. Still can’t admit Muggles are better at some things than wizards, huh?’

‘Like what?’ Draco wanted to know, before taking another swallow.

‘Electricity,’ Harry said sarcastically. ‘Cinema.’ He nodded at Draco’s beer. ‘Brewing.’

‘I only know what the last word means,’ Draco announced, the beer fizzling pleasantly in his stomach. ‘The only thing Muggles are better at is…’ he squinted thoughtfully, staring at Harry’s jeans until Harry glared daggers at him. ‘…making clothes, possibly. They certainly make enough of them.’

‘I suppose that shows a great achievement for you, to be able to say that much,’ Harry said wryly, around the rim of his bottle. Draco waited for him to choke, rather disappointed when he expertly tilted up the bottle and tossed back most of the contents.

‘Steady on, Potter,’ Draco said warningly. ‘It’s only three in the day. Far too early to get drunk.’

‘Well you see, Malfoy,’ Harry said, slouching back insolently, ‘I, unlike you, do not get drunk on one light beer. And if I wanted to get paralytic in the middle of the day, who are you to stop me?’

‘I wouldn’t stop you, Potter,’ Draco sneered. ‘You can drink yourself into an early grave for all I care. I just thought you’d have a little more respect for your son, that’s all.’

‘That’s rich, coming from the one who was force-feeding him whiskey,’ Harry retorted. He seemed a little struck by what Draco had said, though, for he put his beer on the floor and leaned forward. ‘Out of interest, what makes you think I even get drunk on a regular basis?’

Draco shrugged eloquently. ‘Well, I did hear -’

‘No, that’s right,’ Harry said, grimly amused and speaking over Draco. ‘Rita Skeeter is an old crony of yours; correct me if I’m wrong? A leopard does not change its spots, or in her case a beetle. For your information, on Ron’s last birthday I got smashed, yes, and she spotted me reeling out of Sharkey’s nightclub. While I had Louisa Weasley babysitting for Wystan. I’m no more a drunkard than you.’ He rolled his eyes. ‘What am I saying? You believed I fancied Hermione just because that fool woman said so.’

‘Actually, I didn’t,’ Draco said, stung. ‘I have eyes. As it happens, I have not seen you for years. How was I to know you weren’t a fully pickled alco when I had no visual evidence to the contrary?’

‘Fair enough,’ Harry sighed, leaning back again. ‘Let that be an end to that rumour, then.’

‘Fine,’ Draco said, wanting to say something killingly witty but finding himself completely at a loss. Did Harry realised he was slowly tracing the circle of his bellybutton with one beer-damp finger? It looked completely unconscious, from the impassive, contemplative look on his face, but Draco found it was having more effect on him than if Harry had been doing it on purpose, fully aware of the consequences.

Fortunately, Wystan bounded back into the room at that moment, and Draco was treated to a fond, gallingly heart-warming look on Harry’s face; it was not in the slightest forced - simply Harry’s default expression around his son.

‘Good, no blood!’ Wystan said cheerfully, and Harry stuck his tongue out at him. Draco almost let loose a startled laugh, but caught himself in time. ‘Look, Professor,’ he said, turning to Draco. ‘The Stardust X900. Top of the range. I can bring it to school next year, for team tryouts.’

‘Impressive,’ Draco said, holding out his hands. Wystan proudly set the smooth handle in them, and Draco ran his hands along the length. He could barely feel the grain of the wood, it was so slick. The tail-twigs were as neat to look almost woven together; the name was picked out in what looked like cubic zirconium; it flashed as Draco turned the broom over in the light. Draco wrapped his hands around the handle, his hands falling effortlessly into a flier’s grip. It was arrow-straight beneath his fingers.

He happened to glance up at Harry, who was staring at him with a very odd look on his face. Almost flustered, Draco faced Wystan, his face breaking into a rare, genuine smile.

‘This is a very good broom,’ he told him, and Wystan grinned, taking the modest words for the seal of appreciation that they really were. ‘Going for the Keeper position, are you?’

Wystan nodded. Harry started. ‘How did you know?’

‘Guessed,’ Draco shrugged, inwardly high-fiving.

‘Want to play some Quaffle-toss?’ Wystan asked hopefully.

‘Sure,’ Draco agreed, after the smallest of hesitations, during which he had noted Harry’s expression. It was still; not approving, but neither was it resentful.

‘Get Malfoy an old broom from the shed,’ Harry called after them. Draco turned, uncertain, and Harry lifted his shoulders defensively. ‘None of Wystan’s old brooms are full size,’ he muttered.

‘Oh. Thank you,’ Draco said, after some consideration, and followed Wystan out.

~

Everyday robes were not like Quidditch robes, which were streamlined and close fitting. As he was feeling overly warm in any case, Draco felt no compunction about shedding his outer robes, thanking Merlin he had not gone commando beneath. He was wearing soft Italian trousers and a silk shirt, along with dragonhide boots. Wystan unlocked the door to an outbuilding, and touched something on the wall that flooded the room with light. Draco blinked. More Muggle technology, he presumed.

‘I’ll just grab a Quaffle,’ Wystan said. ‘Take your pick.’

‘Thanks,’ Draco said, but he was already gone. Moving between the racks of brooms with something approaching holy awe, he shook his head. There were more brooms here than he had ever seen together, even in Quality Quidditch Supplies. Of course, Harry had played professionally for over a decade.

For some reason drawn on beyond sparkling modern sticks that literally quivered at his passing, Draco reached out to the very last broom at the far back of the shed. In fact, as soon as he had entered he had had the idea of finding it in his head. Harry’s Firebolt.

It was there, all right, somewhat dusty but sleek as ever, its true value shining even though years of neglect. Draco swallowed back the bile at the memories of defeat the touch of the broom called up in favour of fulfilling one of his longest-held desires. He had begged his father for one, but even Lucius Malfoy was loath to buy a three-thousand-galleon broom for a Seeker who lost most of his matches. Again, cheers, Potter.

Lifting it out of its clips, Draco sighed happily. Tucking it under his arm, he did not even wait until he was out of the shed before thrusting his leg over it and urging it into the air. Yes, the power was there, thrumming through him; Draco felt like he was an extension of his broom. Shooting up vertically, he yelled like a kid, a huge bawling roar that had Wystan staring up at him. Draco executed a perfect Wronksi Feint as Wystan’s face drained of colour, drawing up alongside the boy with the balls of his feet skidding along the packed earth.

‘Wow,’ the boy said, somewhat shakily. ‘I’ve never seen anyone but Dad do that.’

For once not aggravated by the comparison, Draco simply smiled again. Twice in one day! You’re slipping, Malfoy.

‘I can’t count the number of times your father thrashed me on this broom,’ Draco said musingly, running his hands along the gold name. It was tarnished and flaky, but the broom still shivered with raw energy.

‘I didn’t know you played against him!’ Wystan said, surprised.

Draco raised his eyes. ‘I was the Slytherin Seeker for six years. Doesn’t he ever talk about playing? He was the youngest House Seeker in a century.’

‘Yeah, so he said,’ Wystan said distractedly. ‘Hang on…I think he did mention you - just never by name. He sometimes talked about this rival Seeker…he said you were the only one who ever gave him a run for his money.’

‘I don’t know, Wystan,’ Draco said disbelievingly. ‘There were two other Seekers at any one time he could have been talking about.’

‘Nope,’ Wystan said, sounding confident. ‘He named all the others. Wow. Two quality Seekers in one place! I’m glad I’m not going for that position. That’s way too much to live up to!’

‘You’re perfectly capable of it,’ Draco said reprovingly.

‘I know,’ Wystan said merrily. ‘I prefer to make my own legends, that’s all.’

Draco snorted. ‘Let go that Quaffle, boy, and we’ll see if you can put your money where your mouth is.’

‘Gladly,’ Wystan said, smirking. He released the ball, and they both shot after it like a pair of comets. Draco was quickly absorbed in the game, but he could have sworn that as he passed one of the windows at eyeball-whipping speed, Harry was standing there, watching them.

 
 
Current Mood: exanimateexanimate
Current Music: 'SOS,' ABBA
 
 
 
Caitcoralia13 on November 13th, 2004 08:22 pm (UTC)
Good, good, SO good! I am practicing my cringing for the slash!
every Starbucks should have a polar bearscoradh on November 14th, 2004 09:05 am (UTC)
Squint your eyes up nice and good now...:).

BTW, endless thanks for submitting yourself to this. You've no idea of the thrill I get from people reading stuff I've written! (Which is why I'd never friendslock...)
Caitcoralia13 on November 14th, 2004 10:40 am (UTC)
Haha - I get the same thrill! I know it well.