Draco awoke suddenly. He sat up in bed wondering what was wrong. Something
had awakened him, and he felt slightly disoriented. He hadn't awakened in
the middle of the night like this in months, not since he and Ginny had
gotten married. Or if he had, it was just to nuzzle his wife's warm body
and maybe make love to her. He looked at Ginny's side of the bed.
Where the hell was she? he wondered sleepily. He left the bed. Grabbing
the silky lounging pants she loved so much, he pulled them up over his lean
legs and narrow hips. Then he went searching.
Ginny leaned on the windowsill of the small sitting room attached to
Draco's bedroom in his grandparents' home. It was the bedroom that Draco
had used for the four years he had lived here. She loved visiting here and
she loved the view. Draco had spent hours showing her the different
constellations and telling the wonderful tales his grandfather had taught
him. She loved Mr and Mrs Noirtier, too. They had welcomed her into their
home like a beloved, lost child. She imagined that the years after Narcissa
moved out must have been lonely ones.
Draco watched her for a moment. She was looking at the stars, just as she
had been that horrible, wonderful night in the Astronomy tower. It had been
more than four years since he had first told her he loved her. He still
shuddered sometimes when he thought how close he'd come to losing her and
ruining his life. Where would he be now if she hadn't chosen to give him
another chance? He didn't like to think about it.
Ginny was just picking out a familiar pattern when strong arms slipped
around her waist and tightened. She leaned back into his embrace, sighing.
"Trouble sleeping, love?" he asked softly, nibbling at her neck.
"No, not really. I just wanted to think."
Her eyes closed and she felt her body respond to the things he was doing
with his mouth and hands. She shivered. God, she loved this man.
He turned her around and let his hands skim down her shoulder, over her
breast and on down the flat stomach. He reached the hem of the silk tee
shirt she had stolen from him and slipped his hand underneath.
"About what?" he asked, pulling the tee up and tickling the soft skin over
"Mmmm, just this and that," she replied.
She let her hands wander down his spine and slip under the elastic
waistband of his pants. Then lower. He breathed in sharply.
"I love it when you do that," he told her. Then he stepped back and took
her hands firmly in his. "But not now. Now you're going to tell me what's
He lifted her and carried her to one of the overstuffed chairs set near the
empty hearth. It was a warm summer night and they didn't need a fire. He
sat with her on his lap.
"Nothing's worrying me, Draco."
She wrapped her arms around his neck, pressing her small, firm breasts to
his chest. She was trying to distract him. She was doing a good job, too.
"Ginny, love, you never wake up in the middle of the night to think.
Something is bothering you, and if you don't tell me right now,
I'll...well, I don't know what I'll do, but it will be drastic!"
Ginny giggled. "You could always threaten not to make love to me. That
would be drastic."
"That, my love, would be just plain impossible." He chuckled, too, a sexy
rumble from deep in his throat that made her heart start beating double-
"Was it something Grandmother said? You were having a pretty serious
discussion with her."
Ginny gave up trying to distract him. He wanted her to talk and would keep
at her until she told. Might as well get it over with. Then maybe they
could get back to loving.
"Sort of," she admitted finally. "I understand your grandfather wants you
to start traveling for him since he doesn't get around as well."
Draco sat back, pulling her with him. He stroked the beautiful red hair
that now draped down to the middle of her back.
"He did mention it. I told him that it was something we would have to
"Do you want to? What about the Foundation? And there are a lot of people
here who would miss you, most of my family included."
It sounded like Ginny was hoping he would stay, but he knew her well enough
to know she wasn't offering an opinion, merely stating facts. She would
withhold her opinion until he had a chance to think everything out
Draco considered his answer. He had stood with Potter and his bunch during
the final battle with Voldemort and his supporters. After Voldemort had
been defeated, most of his followers had perished or fled. Few were ever
captured and brought to trial. His parents had both perished serving the
madman they had given up their son for. Because the Malfoys had been on
Voldemort's side, the ministry wanted to confiscate all the family's
possessions. But, amazingly, several people had come forward and argued
that since Draco had fought against Voldemort, his birthright should not be
taken away. The money and possessions hadn't mattered to him, but the show
of support and good will had completely bowled him over.
A compromise had been reached. Draco would keep any monies held in accounts
under Lucius or Narcissa's names, but all properties and possessions would
be auctioned off and the proceeds would go to assist those injured by
Voldemort or his followers.
Unfortunately, there wasn't anyone willing or qualified to oversee the
disposition of the funds raised for the victims, including what had been
raised from the Malfoy holdings, so Draco was also elected as Chairman of
the Victim's Foundation. It didn't seem to matter to anyone that he was
only nineteen when everything was finally settled.
Ginny and her family had helped enormously. The Squib accountant cousin had
been called in to set up the management of the financial aspects. Fred and
George, who were running their own extremely prosperous business, had
offered sound business advice. His grandparents offered support and
encouragement. And Ginny had been his sounding board for every major
decision he made. Again, she offered no opinions, but she had the knack of
presenting all sides of an issue, unvarnished and easy to consider.
Under the advice of the accountant cousin, who happily discovered a minor
latent magical ability, the Foundation made some wise investments and was
now self- supporting. Most decisions still came across Draco's desk, but he
had never wanted that kind of power or responsibility. At least not since
he had left his parents' home.
Instead of answering directly, Draco hugged his wife closer. "Did you know
that Fudge's assistant approached me the other day?"
Ginny's head shot up. "What did that pathetic little rodent want?"
Cornelius Fudge was probably the worst Minister of Magic they'd ever had,
but his assistant was an obsequious, power-hungry political climber who was
constantly trying to make alliances with those he thought might be useful
to him in future.
"He said that there were several positions coming open in the Ministry that
could eventually lead to the top job. He said he would use his influence to
get me in if I would remember him later on."
Ginny scowled. "Doesn't he realize you already have more influence than he
ever will? The little worm. You know he sees your position at the
Foundation as a huge, unexploited bankroll."
He smiled. "I know, love, and don't worry. I'm not bucking for a Ministry
"I should hope not," she answered. "A father and two brothers are quite
Ginny's father, a minor civil servant for years had finally been promoted
(over his very strenuous objections) to Minister of Muggle Trade. But he
was happy as the job brought him in closer contact with Muggles. Both of
the brothers in the Ministry were also successful, with extreme upward
"The reason I brought it up is that I want you to understand. I don't want
any position that might bring more power and influence than is good for
me." His face tightened as he said this. Ginny knew he was thinking of his
"Draco, love," she caressed his face and looked into those stormy gray
eyes. "You are not your father. You don't need to worry about becoming
corrupt. You're just not like that. Besides, you'd have to deal with me
"Hmmmm, that sounds like a challenge." He idly caressed her bare thigh. "I
just wish I felt as certain about it as you do," he muttered. "Anyway, I've
been wondering for a while now how to pull myself away from the Foundation,
just keep a nominal roll in it. Grandfather's offer would be perfect. I'm
taking over the family business. But what do you think? Days, weeks out of
town, only seeing your family at holidays, it might get a bit lonely for
Ginny considered. "I'd be with you, love. And there are always port keys.
Or even airplanes if we want an adventure. But, what about children?" she
asked, biting her lip nervously.
"What about them? The nice thing about children is that they are
wonderfully mobile." He looked strangely at her. "Are you worried that I
might not be such a good father?"
"Heavens, no!" Ginny declared. "All my nieces and nephews love you. You're
great with them. But sometimes I have to laugh. I've seen you bring
hardened businessmen to their knees, but those nieces of mine have you
wrapped around their little fingers!"
He took one of her hands and wrapped his around the little finger. Then he
kissed the palm and flicked it lightly with his tongue. Ginny gasped, as
she always did when he did that.
"Mmmmm," he agreed. "They're just like their Aunt Ginny. She has me wrapped
around her little finger, too."
He looked into her eyes again, those huge beautiful brown eyes. "If you're
not worried about my parenting skills, then what are you worried about?"
She took his hand and laid it on her belly. "I just wasn't sure you wanted
to start practicing them quite so soon."
His half-lidded eyes shot wide open. A huge grin formed on his face as he
looked to where his hand rested on her stomach. "Ginny, are you...are we?
I'm going to be a father?!"
Ginny smiled and nodded. "Somewhere around six months from now. If you've
decided to take over for your grandfather, we should be in Japan by then,
don't you think? Maybe everyone could visit us out there?"
Draco jumped up with Ginny in his arms. Laughing and shouting the good news
for everyone and anyone to hear, he whirled her around the room until she
was dizzy. He carried her into the bedroom and they collapsed on the bed.
He looked deep into those dreamy eyes.
"I love you, Ginny," he said softly.
She tangled her fingers in the fine, pale hair, pulling his face to hers.
She arched her body up to his, needing him. "Show me," she whispered.
From their bedroom, Mr and Mrs Noirtier listened to the laughter and cheers
from the bedroom down the hall. He took her hand and squeezed it tightly.
"About damned time," he said gruffly. "Wanted to see some little ones
around here before I pass."
His wife turned to him and stroked his shoulder softly. "I like her, love.
I think she's good for our Draco. And she comes from a long line of
breeders. Likely we'll get tired of playing with our great-grandchildren
long before those two get tired of making 'em."
Mr Noirtier agreed, smiling. His family was finally a family again