A/N: This fluffy little piece was inspired by some wonderful artwork by CaptBexx on DeviantArt. It's entitled "Draco meets Teddy", and you all should check it out! (It also serves as the accompanying artwork for this story.) I've written this one-shot with the artist's permission.
This is my first attempt at writing Dramione (DMHG), too, a ship I don't normally write or read, so, for those who enjoy this coupling, I sincerely hope I've done your ship justice. I just adored CaptBexx's artwork so much that I felt compelled to get creative. Many thanks to the artist for inspiring my Muse! :)
Disclaimer: Harry Potter is copyrighted to and belongs to JK Rowling. I'm just playing in her sandbox. No money, just fun. Artwork is credited per above.
With much quiet begrudging, Draco hauled his bare feet down the creaky stairs of Grimmauld Place, hair abnormally askew and blond pieces jutting and spiking every which way atop his head. His eyelids, still droopy and heavy with much wanted sleep, were half closed as he trudged towards the first level, his hands reaching out before him to grab ahold of whatever was within grasp. Every part of his knackered body was screaming in protest to being forced awake at such an ungodly hour, and this dismal, dusty place known as Potter's residence was too bloody dark for Draco's liking. He couldn't fathom what possessed the twat and the youngest Weasley to live here, as one could barely see two feet in front of his or her face.
Somehow, Draco landed on the bottom step without so much as a scratch or arse over elbow. That would have been a sore sight, one he was sure Hermione would have appreciated.
Draco paused to yawn and stretch, in dire need of another moment to collect himself. He wasn't accustomed to being up this bloody early. If it had been his choice, he'd be back upstairs in bed, tucked warmly beneath the blankets and his girlfriend's divine body heat conveniently pressed up against him.
Not today, however.
How Draco had gotten himself roped into babysitting duties was a deeply unsettling puzzlement in itself; the fact that he'd be watching Potter's godson of all squirmy, inconvenient specimens to mind was astounding to the point of madness.
Potter! he contemplated with a grumpy grimace. He owes me for this.
"But, he's your cousin," Hermione had protested only yesterday when their plans for the weekend had been decided, apparently without Draco's consent. Her eyes had searched her moody boyfriend's, perplexed by his uneasiness.
"Your point?" Draco had unpleasantly sneered back at her, hands shoved deep into his pockets and mouth pouting like a petulant, stuck-up child.
"Oh, for goodness's sake, Draco! Don't you want to be present in the boy's life? He's your cousin!"
"But, he's not my responsibility, Hermione!"
"He doesn't need to be! But, you're still family. You owe it to him."
Draco had the indecency to look affronted by that suggestion. "Says who?"
He regretted questioning his witch instantly, for Hermione crossed her arms over her chest, brown eyes ablaze. Draco didn't hesitate to back down.
"Me," she answered in a dangerous hiss Draco knew not to overstep; she stuck up that freckled nose of hers as well.
Thus, reluctantly, Draco conceded. Potter and that new wife of his, Ginny, were in need of some much desired 'alone time', so Hermione had dragged Draco into helping her look after the cumbersome toe rag whilst Potter and his bride slipped away for the weekend. He had no idea where they were headed, only that they'd better be home by Sunday.
"It'll be perfect bonding time for you and Teddy!" his girlfriend had all but squealed with delight; Draco smartly kept his less amicable opinions to himself.
Draco scratched his head and gazed apprehensively down the hall. The sound of light babbling could be heard coming from the kitchen, where Hermione was presently getting breakfast started for them. That spawn of the late Remus Lupin and Nymphadora Tonks—May they rest in peace—had had the nerve to wake him and Hermione both out of a deep, pleasant slumber at the crack of dawn. Hermione had insisted that Draco "get his arse out of bed" and help her with breakfast, and, after much fussing, Draco did as the 'Princess' commanded, which he preferred to affectionately call her by whenever she was in a strop.
And here you are, his conscience chose to pipe in, as if he needed the reminder that he was practically a slave to Hermione's will.
Taking a calculated breath, Draco shuffled into the kitchen and squinted at the sunlight that assaulted his eyes. As his eyes slowly adjusted to the light, he blinked and took in a relaxed Hermione humming at the stove. The delectable aroma of a fry-up penetrated his nostrils, and all seemed well and right with Draco's world until the next moment when a particularly miniature eyesore abruptly ended his moment of peace.
Little Teddy was seated in a highchair with a bowl of oatmeal at his disposal. Hermione's back was turned on the horrid scene that was unfolding, but Draco didn't have the luxury of turning a blind eye. To his horror, Teddy was neglecting his spoon in favour of using his fingers to scoop and slurp up the oatmeal into his mouth, though lots of it kept missing his mouth entirely and ending up on his blue onesie, the highchair, or the floor.
"No, Teddy!" Draco hissed disapprovingly; he rushed forward to snatch up the tot's unused spoon and held it out to him, expecting him to take it. "Use this!"
Teddy merely gazed up at Draco curiously, eyes wide with delight at his presence, and smiled, essence of oats covering his lips and cheeks. His hair changed from a florescent pink to a vibrant turquoise.
"Dwaco!" he squeaked and pointed at him.
However, Draco returned the boy's happy greeting with a frown. "Spoon," he tried to emphasise, scraping up oatmeal from Teddy's bowl and pressing it to his lips, though he was unsuccessful in enticing him to swallow. "We don't eat with our hands like animals!"
"Oh, Draco, he doesn't know any better," Hermione chuckled patiently; she shook her head and resumed turning the sizzling bacon in one of the frying pans. "Just keep an eye on him while I finish this. I made tea if you'd like?"
At the suggestion of tea, Draco halted all efforts in instructing Teddy to eat properly without hesitation. He desperately needed to wake up or he'd never make it through the morning, let alone the rest of the day, with this devilish little Metamorphmagus on their hands.
"Dwaco! Dwaco!" Teddy called after the beady-eyed bloke who'd retreated from his side. He tried to scoot about in his highchair to see him better.
Draco ignored the excited tot, in pursuit of the steaming kettle instead. An empty pink mug was already set aside for his use, and he scowled, unamused, as he picked it up and inspected it closely. Not only was it a ghastly colour, but Princess was written across the front of it. It was most definitely suited for Hermione's use, not his.
"I believe this is yours," he muttered and started to hand it to her.
Hermione whipped her head around, offering Draco a wry-looking smile. "I took the one intended for you by accident. Sorry, love."
Too tired to scrounge for another cup, Draco digressed to himself alone and poured his tea. All the while, Teddy continued calling and waving to him animatedly from his highchair, bouncing up and down in his seat.
"Dwaco! Dwaco! Dwaco!"
"Awww, he likes you! Look how happy he is!"
Draco pondered the crazy-haired child's interest whilst taking a long appreciative sip of his tea. He wove an arm around Hermione's hip and stared at Teddy, completely befuddled.
"What do you suppose it wants?" he asked after a moment or two had passed, the pair of them simply watching and taking in the adorable tot.
That roused an unexpected reaction. Hermione slapped Draco hard on the arm, sending a flicker of scorching hot tea shooting out of his mug. He narrowly avoided getting splashed.
"Ack!" he gasped and cursed under his breath.
"He's not an 'it', Draco!" she reprimanded him, eyes narrowed rather mirthfully. "That's your cousin, you pretentious git! Now, go sit with him and help him eat."
Draco wasn't sure why she proceeded to survey him up and down and snicker to herself, supposedly at his expense, but Draco wilfully ignored whatever had the witch so amused and slumped into the chair closest to Teddy. The boy giggled and grinned from ear to ear. He scooted closer with outstretched hands that were slathered in oatmeal.
The sight made Draco cringe; not because Teddy was smiling at him but for the appalling mess that he'd become. Specks of wasted oatmeal were everywhere, including in the boy's hair.
"You're a mess, lad."
Teddy simply clapped his hands and repeated Draco's name over and over again; or attempted to, at least.
Draco wasted little time in extracting his wand and Accio'ing a clean cloth into his hand. Whether the wicked wee one liked it or not, he wasn't going to allow Teddy to remain coated with oats.
Apparently, Teddy had other ideas in store. His elbow suddenly knocked the bowl, unintentionally toppling it sideways. "No, Ted—" Draco gasped and tried to shield himself from the onslaught of incoming oatmeal bits, but he wasn't quick enough.
The boy's cereal was dispatched everywhere, most of it, unfortunately, sprinkling Draco's hair as well as splattering his nose and a rather ugly sweater he was unaware yet of donning. Teddy shrieked with laughter, his hair turning a series of brightly shaded colours. He was entirely unfazed by the highly irritable scowl Draco was projecting at him for his error.
"You disgust me, werewolf-baby!" Draco gritted between his teeth.
Innocent Teddy remained unruffled, grinning at him from his messy perch in his highchair. He reached out to Draco, pouncing joyously at the undignified sight before him.
"Dwaco! Dwaco! Dwaco!"
Hermione turned to take in the commotion, and when she saw the meshed oats that were oozing down Draco's squeamish face, she, too, broke into an uncontrollable fit of giggles. Draco glared at her from beside Teddy and used his wand to rid himself of whatever contamination he spotted. Hermione, on the other hand, was forced to cover her mouth to keep from snorting outright.
"I'm glad you both find this so amusing! And—" Draco stopped short, the realisation of what he was wearing suddenly dawning on him. His steel grey eyes widened in abhorrence. "When the hell did you pack this?" he demanded of Hermione, shooting daggers at her again.
Alas, his affronted expression only served to make the witch laugh harder. "What do you care? It's just us and Teddy!"
"But, it's - it's - it's hideous!"
Hermione could have sworn that Draco's cheeks flushed as scarlet as the colour of Gryffindor House itself. How in Merlin's balls had he not passed even a glimpse towards the piece of clothing he'd thrown on before coming down the stairs? It was a gift bestowed on him from last year's Christmas at the Burrow: a beastly jumper of cobalt blue knitted by none other than Molly Weasley, with a big, yellow 'D' sewn on the front. Draco had thanked the Weasley matriarch graciously enough, and, inwardly, he had to admit that he'd been touched at the token of acceptance the family had shown him. That never implied that he intended on wearing it, though, let alone for an entire weekend.
"Bollocks!" Hermione teased him, knowing full well how Draco felt on the inside; she smiled warmly at him. "You adore that jumper, love. Don't deny it."
Issuing a snarl of disagreement, Draco hunched his shoulders in defeat. This morning was an utter disaster. He couldn't begin to conceive how the rest of the weekend might go with these undesired babysitting duties. He stared long and hard at the tiny Metamorphmagus across from him, who was beaming in return, that chubby face of his still smeared with oatmeal.
"Dwaco?" Teddy suddenly inquired, his sweet, small voice somewhat hesitant-sounding.
Naturally, Draco wanted to be angry with the toe rag. He really did. His snot-nosed cousin had managed to not only wake him up too early for his liking but also spilled breakfast all over him; but then, Teddy extended his arm to lightly tap Draco's cheek, and, though those tiny fingers were still speckled with spoiled cereal, the way they gently touched and caressed the wizard's face thawed whatever ill feelings Draco previously had.
Cracking a smile at the corners of his mouth, Draco encouraged Teddy to continue examining his face and pressed his cheek into the wee one's hand. The bright-eyed child broadened his smile, trusting in Draco completely, and whispered his name again, only this time with a strange, yet welcoming, tenderness.
"Dwaco," he giggled softly. "Dwaco. Dwaco..."
From a few feet away, Hermione pursed her lips together, privately moved by the enchanting exchange she'd witnessed, and lowered the heat on the stove to purposely slow the cooking process. As far as she was concerned, Draco and dear Teddy could afford another couple more uninterrupted minutes of bonding time.
When she chanced a glance over her shoulder a minute later, Hermione was glad of her Slytherin-like tactic. Teddy now had his dirty fingers shoved inside Draco's mouth. Although Draco was taken aback at first and gagged, he followed up his initial reaction by buoyantly pretending to nibble on Teddy's hand, entertaining his cousin with more laughter and giggles.
"Told you he likes you," Hermione leaned over to Draco and murmured in his ear when their fry-up was ready.
Draco shrugged and awkwardly cleared his throat. "Yeah, well, erm, he's not so bad." He added with a smirk, "Even if he is the spawn of a werewolf."
Hermione rolled her eyes and saw to wiping Teddy's mouth and hands clean before taking a seat at the table with them.
From his highchair, Teddy only had eyes for the pale, blond wizard at his side. "Dwaco."
A/N #2: I hope you enjoyed it! :) Do be sure to check out the artist's work. Reviews are always greatly appreciated, too.