|Is This Love?
Author: Siriusgirl1 PM
He watched her blossom. He flirted. She glared. He grew to like her. She avoided him. He fell in love. She only just began to notice him. But they were opposites, light and dark. Do his loyalty and love lie with her, or with the Dark Lord she loathes?Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Angst - Lucius M. & Andromeda T. - Chapters: 4 - Words: 13,883 - Reviews: 16 - Favs: 7 - Follows: 18 - Updated: 09-16-07 - Published: 09-13-07 - id: 3781958
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Here's chapter four – and it's longer than the previous chapters! There isn't much Lucius/Andromeda interaction, but…well, the events of this chapter lead to the interaction.
If that made any sense.
"You really should give up, you know. It's not like you can hide forever; she's going to find you some time…" she said, not looking fazed by the glare she was receiving. "Look, it was your fault for leaving early. The ball was held in your honor, and then halfway through the night, we discover that you're missing. What did you expect her to do?"
Andromeda shifted her position so that more of her was visible to her younger sister.
"Cissy, what else did you expect from me? It was boring! And the way I was being treated…" her voice trailed off. "One of them had to be sent away…"
"Yes, I knew that. Mother wasn't too pleased when she found out. Of course, Bella did take down the man's name…I wonder what his fate will be…"
Andromeda mumbled something under her breath.
"Mother was probably unhappier about my disappearance."
"I believe she was," agreed Narcissa. She shut the magazine as she fixed her sister with a curious look. "So? How was it?"
"How was what?"
Narcissa glared at her sister.
"Him. As in, Lucius Malfoy."
There was a pause, during which Narcissa stared at her older sister, as Andromeda stared at her.
"Cissy, I have no idea what you want me to tell you," said Andromeda, after a while.
"I want you to tell me what happened with Lucius Malfoy!"
"Oh." Understanding dawned on the brunette. "Nothing, really. He just recognized my vain attempt at getting out of the ballroom and sort of helped me with it. That's it."
Narcissa had the gall to raise a perfectly sculpted eyebrow at her.
"And the reason why we did not see either of you back at the ball was because…?"
"We were talking," said Andromeda, deciding that she did not like the speculative gleam in her sister's light eyes. "Cissy, if you are thinking that something else happened……" she trailed off somewhat threateningly.
Narcissa shrugged, looking innocent.
"You must excuse me, but your joint disappearance was…rather suspicious," she said, sarcastically, before a sly smile appeared on her lips. "Besides, I am just putting forth the speculations that the others came up with."
"The…others?" The golden-haired girl nodded. "And who might these 'others' be?"
"Bella, Rodolphus, Evan, Greg, Vince, Tim, Mrs. Nott, Mr. Rofstein, Mr. –" she stopped abruptly when she saw the look of pure horror on her sister's face, as she stepped out fully into the corridor, quite forgetting that she had been hiding for a reason.
"They – they –" she spluttered incoherently, "– speculation…they – all of them-?"
"There was more," started Narcissa, "but I'm sure that you wouldn't want to know," she added hurriedly.
It took Andromeda a moment to calm herself enough to start speaking coherently again.
"What…were they saying?" She winced as she saw the teasing smile on her sister's lips. "Dare I even ask?"
"I don't think I should –"
"-Oh alright! They were saying that you and…Lucius – who is a bit intimidating, haven't you noticed? – had snuck off to enjoy some 'quality time' together," said Narcissa. "And…someone also said that you shouldn't be bothered, for…the two of you were young and youth tended to make even the most sensible of souls fall prey to lust and-"
"-Enough, enough!" groaned Andromeda, as she slapped her forehead with one hand. "Oh Merlin, I can't believe that they – lord, is that what they think happened? How could they? 'Fall prey to lust' indeed! Why I ought to-"
"-It was better than what Bella had to say," interrupted Narcissa, sagely.
"…Should I be afraid?"
"According to her, the two of you were…how did she put it? Ah, yes, the two of you were 'having a quick one' in some deserted corridor."
The expression on her sister's face was comic; that much Narcissa had to admit, as the blood drained from it, leaving a shell-shocked brunette staring at her as though she was seeing a ghost.
A few minutes of silence passed like that, during which the two sisters just stared at each other. "Uh, Andy, I think you should-"
"So, you have decided to come out of hiding, have you?" Andromeda cringed at the familiar cool, stern voice.
"Hiding, mother? Never!" she said, schooling her features into what she hoped was a hurt expression as she turned around to face the dark-haired woman.
Naturally, she was not impressed.
"Honestly child, the things that I do for you…" Druella Black shook her head. "Sometimes I wonder if I am only wasting my time on you…and if I shouldn't be focusing on Narcissa instead…"
Andromeda nodded hurriedly.
"Oh, please mother, do go ahead. Narcissa would love for you to focus your attention on her! I mean, she is still young, and she will need your full-"
"-This is precisely why I wonder where we went wrong with you."
Andromeda stiffened. She knew what this was about – an old argument of her mother's; a favorite old argument, if she was to be exact.
"Right," she said, refusing to take the bait. "Sorry to disappoint you, but I wouldn't know the answer to that, would I? After all, it was you who went wrong..."
Druella Black frowned.
"I do not like the tone of your voice, Andromeda," she said, curtly. "I expect you to treat me with more respect – a feat which you spectacularly failed at last night, when you humiliated both me and your father's name by pulling that stunt!"
"Well I'm sorry if last night's event put a damper on what was supposed to be a good birthday," retorted Andromeda, crossing her arms across her chest.
"Lower your arms," snapped Druella Black, her frown increasing in its intensity. "And what are you talking about? You should be grateful, you silly girl! Do you know how many girls would do just about anything to have such a function for the sixteenth birthday?! No one usually has functions likes these unless it's a Coming of Age ball-"
"Well I'm not like those other-"
"-Do not interrupt me when I am speaking, girl! I had been planning this for a long time, and had painstakingly handwritten all the invitations and what do I get in return? That stunt of yours!"
Andromeda's frown matched her mother's.
"I never asked for any of this, did I? Then again, when have you done something after taking one of us into consideration? I can hardly remember." She scowled. "And you didn't do any of that for me anyway – you did it for the family name, so that you could assure the eligible Pureblood bachelors that the second Black daughter was not a misfit or an outcast, as the rumors seem to indicate!"
"What if I was?" shot back Druella. "I could hardly allow them to think that a Black was content with associating with Mudbloods and-"
"-Don't use that term!"
"Andromeda Polaris, you will not tell me what I should or should not say!" There was a steely glint in Druella Black's eyes as she glowered icily at her daughter – the one who frequently caused her so much trouble. "You will go to your room immediately and stay there for the remained of the afternoon."
"-And while you are there, you will draft an apology to young Mr. Croskin and his parents, for rudely having them evicted from the premises-"
"-What?" Andromeda did not bother toning down her voice when her mother sent her a pointed look. "You want me to apologize to him?"
"Yes, I do believe that that is what I-"
"-Even after what he did to me?"
Druella stared sternly at her daughter.
"These kinds of things tend to happen, especially on festive occasions such as the one that was held then. He is a young man – one cannot blame him for wanting to…explore as it were. After all, if he were to become your husband, surely he will be doing more than just-"
"-But he isn't my husband and I hope that he never will be! He was arrogant, and rude, and had no right to touch me in the manner that he-"
"-You had no right to kick him out, Andromeda. I am ashamed of you. We Blacks have always been known to treat our guests well."
Andromeda laughed hollowly.
"Of course," she said, "I should have known. The bloody family reputation is more important than some silly girl's protection."
"You will go to your room now," ordered Druella Black. Andromeda turned on her heel and stalked off down the corridor.
Druella turned her attention to an apprehensive Narcissa, who was watching her older sister walk furiously away. "Don't you ever be as stubborn and rebellious as her, Narcissa," she said, sternly, before heading in the opposite direction.
A few days later found the three Malfoys seated in one of the more spacious living-rooms in the manor, watching the house-elves flitting to and fro, preparing things for the dinner that was being held there that night.
In fact, the guests should be arriving shortly – which was why the three Malfoys were gathered together already, instead of lounging in their separate, favorite parts of the mansion. (For Abraxas it was his office; for Samantha it was the library and for Lucius it was his rooms).
Speaking of guests, thought Abraxas, as he turned his blue eyes on his son, I haven't had much of a chance to properly…tease him…
"Samantha, did Druella say if she was bringing her two daughters as well?" he questioned, turning his head slightly so that he could see both his wife and his son.
"Yes, she did," said Samantha, looking the slightest bit surprised at her husband's question. "I dare say that she will be dragging Andromeda here, in any case, after her…disappearance during that ball…"
Abraxas was amused when he saw his son tense ever so slightly. Honestly, it didn't take much to annoy the boy.
"Ah, yes, her…infamous disappearance," he drawled, instead. "At least Narcissa did not find it desirable to pull the same…stunt…"
Lucius tensed a bit more, but continued to gaze at the fire that was cackling in the hearth opposite him.
Interesting, thought Abraxas.
"Oh, yes, but we cannot really find fault with Andromeda for disappearing," said Samantha, "From the moment she entered the room, I could tell that she was not pleased with the prospect of spending the evening in…such a manner…"
Before Abraxas could make another comment, the pretty woman turned to their son. "But she looked stunning, I must admit…" A sly smile appeared on her face. "Did you not think so, Lucius?"
"Yes, I…suppose she did, mother," was the curt reply that the pale-yellow haired man gave. Abraxas raised his eyebrows slightly as he stared thoughtfully from his wife to his son.
Is there…something that I missed…?
"Narcissa looked quite pretty herself," he said, easily. "You were right when you said that the men will have to be kept away from her in a few years – why, she is already quite the beauty…"
"Yes, she is," he said, even though his thoughts were more focused on the animated tone of a certain brunette's voice as she attempted to drill into his head the importance of the qualities attributed to Ravenclaw house.
Narcissa then, hmm? That, mused Abraxas, is very interesting indeed. She is quite a bit younger than him, though…
"I noticed that you couldn't keep your eyes off Andromeda when she made her entrance, Lucius dear," said Samantha, a teasing glint in her grey eyes.
Abraxas Malfoy was very interested in the sudden tinge of red that appeared on the young man's face, before it disappeared completely.
He raised his eyebrows once more as he gazed intently at his son. Andromeda? He turned to his wife, a questioning expression on his face, but she merely smiled slyly at him too.
Fine, he thought, amused, I can continue in this vein too.
"What were you up to when you disappeared from the ballroom, Lucius? Druella's guests had a fine time coming up with…a number of theories as to why both you and Andromeda were absent from the festivities…" he said.
Lucius shrugged, although he was finding it more and more difficult to stop himself from fidgeting.
"We were just talking – away from the overly eager bachelors whom Miss. Black found stifling," he said, casually. He did not see both his parents stare at him with raised eyebrows upon hearing the formal title he gave the young brunette.
But, of course, Abraxas was not going to let his son get off that easily.
"In the words of our beautifully eloquent Bellatrix," he said, "the two of you were probably 'having a quick one' in some deserted hallway…"
The elder Malfoys watched – each fighting down their amusement – as their son's head whipped around to face his father. There was a slightly mortified expression in the young man's grey eyes as he took in his father's words.
"I – we never – she would not –" He stopped abruptly, immediately mentally berating himself. "That was a ridiculous assumption on Bella's part, father, for nothing of the sort happened."
Utterly pleased by his son's almost boyish reaction, it was only natural that Abraxas push him some more.
"Are you sure? For all we know, the young lady could have used her feminine wiles on you and-"
"-'Dromeda would never do that, so do not even think anything of the sort. She is not like her older sister." The moment the sharp comment left his mouth, Lucius knew that he had, more or less, sealed his fate.
And he was right, for Abraxas was gazing at his son with a somewhat taken aback expression on his face. Of course, his wife was smiling – having more or less guessed something of the sort before – but even she was surprised at the strength of his voiced conviction.
It was then, of course, that a distinctly Slytherin-like smile worked its way onto Abraxas' lips.
"I see," he said, his eyes gleaming. "'Dromeda, is it…?"
Lucius flushed, unable to help it, and muttered something under his breath. "I'm sorry – what was that, Lucius?"
"…She does not like being called that."
His parents exchanged a quick glance.
"But you call her that," stated Samantha. Lucius nodded.
A smirk twisted the corners of the young man's lips upward.
"It gets a lovely reaction from her, especially when she is not in a mood to be…messed with."
"Oh," was all that Abraxas could think of saying.
So, I was wrong, he thought, surprised, it is not Narcissa who has tickled my boy's fancy; it is her sister. I wonder…how? And…when?
Before he could tease the boy – young man, really – further, Dobby appeared in the living room and bowed down to him.
"Master, Mistress, young Master," he greeted, excitedly. "The guests are here." Abraxas nodded, gesturing for the house-elf to lead them in, even as he and the rest of his family stood.
"Neither Orion nor Cygnus will be attending," reminded Samantha, as they waited for their guests to appear before them, "They are away on some family business…something to do with lands and whatnot – best not to inquire too much."
Abraxas nodded absently, for he had caught sight of the anticipatory gleam in his son's grey eyes – a gleam that he knew well himself.
"Now, calm yourself, Lucius; no improper behavior with the young lady…"
"Father…" growled Lucius, amusing Abraxas further by looking slightly embarrassed.
When the doors to the room opened and the figures entered, he made sure that he kept his son in his field of vision.
"I am glad that you could make it Walburga," greeted Abraxas, as he moved forward with grace, to take the dark-haired woman's hand in his own, bringing it to his lips for a genteel kiss. "I do hope that you have recovered well…?"
Walburga Black smiled at her friend, slowly extracting her hand from his, before nodding.
"Oh yes, Abraxas," she said, "I am feeling much better than I did before. And just in time too, for the annual Malfoy-Black Christmas dinner…" She was talking, of course, about the dinner they were about to sit down to – one which had been a tradition between the two families ever since Abraxas' and Walburga's parents had known each other.
The dinner had been held at the Black household last year, which was why the Malfoy Manor was that year's location.
"Oh my goodness, Walburga, your son must be causing quite a stir with the young women in school," commented Samantha, as her eyes landed on the tall, grey eyed thirteen year old, who – instead of fidgeting uncomfortably under her stare – flashed her a charming grin.
"Thank you, Mrs. Malfoy, but I do not think that I have quite reached that stage yet. The stage where I can take advantage of that, I mean."
Abraxas chuckled softly to himself at the boy's cheeky retort. He had a certain…fondness for the boy, despite him being a Gryffindor. There was something about his quick wit and charming personality that made it impossible to look down on him.
And, said a voice in his head, he does remind you of yourself, when you were his age…minus the oh-so-noble Gryffindor thing, of course. And the befriending of Mudbloods and blood-traitors.
"Do excuse the boy's impudence," said Walburga, smiling, although she swatted at the back of the boy's head, causing the slightly chubby ten year old standing next to him to laugh. "It comes from being Sorted into the Gryffindor, I believe…among other things."
Abraxas had long ago decided that Regulus Black would not be quite the character his elder brother was; and he was unsure as to whether that was a good thing, or a bad thing.
"I have heard tales of your trouble making in school, Sirius," he said, smiling at the teenager, "Tell me, is it still going on?"
The lean boy looked startled for a moment – it was…not too hard to see that he would rather be anywhere but with them at that moment – before shrugging (after throwing his mother a quick look, of course).
"Yeah." He winced slightly as his mother cuffed him again. "I mean, yes, Mr. Malfoy."
"Do ignore his manners," commented Walburga, as Druella came to a halt beside her. "He has been hanging around blood-traitors and Mudbloods for too long…"
"Ah, Druella, glad you could make it," said Samantha, pleasantly. At the sight of the newest Black woman, Abraxas had turned his attention onto his son.
And he was not disappointed, for his grey eyes brightened – somewhat – as they fell upon the brunette, who trudged behind her mother and younger sister.
Abraxas thought it ironic that she looked exactly as Sirius did; like she would rather be anywhere else but with them.
"Narcissa my dear – lovely as ever," said Abraxas, smiling as he watched the girl squirm when he brought her hand to his lips. He turned his attention to the brunette. "And you are looking as beautiful as you always did, Andromeda…"
He could feel the weight of intense grey eyes on his back as he kissed the brunette's hand, and smiled to himself. Am I detecting…hostility, my dear boy?
"Thank you, Mr. Malfoy," said Andromeda, somewhat dully, causing Abraxas to frown somewhat. The girl was supposed to be a lively one, from all accounts – he had thought she would jump at the chance to make a witty comment in response to his…greeting.
Druella shot her daughter a withering look, before moving to greet Samantha.
"Sirius, Regulus, you have not greeted Lucius yet," said Walburga, glaring at her eldest. Abraxas watched as the dark-haired boy shot his mother a dark look before holding out his hand to his son.
"Greetings, Lucius," he said, somewhat sarcastically.
Lucius shook his head and greeted him in a similar fashion – minus the sarcasm, even though amusement danced in his grey eyes. He did the same for Regulus, and then bowed his head in Narcissa's direction – once more amused at her apparent intimidation – before nodding at Andromeda.
"Lucius," said the brunette, in greeting, as she and her sister curtsied.
Is it just me, wondered Abraxas, or does she seem somewhat…embarrassed?
His thoughts were cut off by his wife.
"Well, let us not stand here all evening! Come, our Christmas dinner awaits us," said Samantha, clapping her hands delightedly, before leading the way to the kitchens while talking to Walburga and Druella. Abraxas allowed the remaining guests to go before him, noticing how Sirius immediately made his way over to Andromeda and how the two exchanged a somewhat secretive smile. Regulus seemed glued to Narcissa.
"Well, Lucius, after you, my dear boy," said Abraxas, mockingly, as he stepped aside for his son. "After all, you would want to get a seat close to your…friend…"
He cheerfully supposed that the haughty look he received from his son was well-deserved.
Well, that was another long chapter! But there's a reason for that; I won't be updating for a few days because of some stuff that I've got to get done!
I hope this satisfies you, in the meantime.
Till next time,