Story written for QLFC S4 R1
Team: Puddlemere United
Position: Beater 2
Write about your chosen Death Eater going on a date
2. (word) Unpleasant
7. (dialogue) "If you don't eat your vegetables, you can't have any pudding."
12. (class) Herbology
Chosen Death Eater: Draco Malfoy
Word Count: 2245 in Google Docs, 2244 in Microsoft Word 2010
All characters, locations, and most familiar terminology belongs to J. K. Rowling and her associates and affiliates. The Three Broomsticks restaurant and menu are trademarked by Universal Studios.
Looking around, Draco admired the beauty of the spring afternoon. From the golden daisies poking their heads up towards the magnificent luminescence of the sun to the cloudless cerulean sky, nature's ever-present allure commanded his attention.
Draco was leisurely traversing the Islamic green grass on his route towards Greenhouse #3, where the third year Ravenclaws and Hufflepuffs have Herbology class, as he was accustomed to on Wednesday afternoons.
The energetic, eloquent, and excitable Mr. Malfoy didn't have a class in the latter half of the Wednesday afternoon block schedule, while his current love interest, the unconventional and eccentric Luna Lovegood, studied the various obscure wizarding plants from 3-5 in the afternoon. Thus, he would promptly exit the charms classroom at 2:50 to begin his miniature trek across the grounds to observe her quaint demeanor and fantasize for the two hours before he could escort her to her dormitory after class.
Today was unlike most Wednesdays, however. Today, Draco was determined to ask Ms. Lovegood out on a date to be commenced during the next Hogsmeade weekend, which was currently set for the Saturday/Sunday after next. He'd been wanting to ask her out for about a month now, and the upcoming Hogsmeade weekend would be an excellent opportunity to test the waters without any stress or pressure stemming from attempting to plan the perfect first date. Hogsmeade was a simple, relaxing environment, ideal for a casual date.
Lost in the beauty of the grounds, his meandering slackened in pace to that of an astonished sightseer; the iridescent medley of aesthetically pleasing springtime combinations of yellows and greens and blues inspired a similar sightseer-esque awe.
Taking the scenic route in such a relaxed manner saw Mr. Malfoy arrive to the edge of the greenhouse tardier than usual.
This did not go unnoticed amongst the quiet Druna shippers intermixed in the crowd. Many of the Ravenclaws, while they didn't particularly like Luna Lovegood in general, were rooting for Draco and Luna to get together. A few hated the potential budding relationship between the two, and the rest erred on the side of indifference.
Before he had arrived, many-a hushed whisper circulated through the room, asking the question, "Where is he?"
Luna, naturally, was oblivious to all of this, and didn't hear a thing. She was too busy being lost in her own little world that lay inside of her head. She hadn't noticed so far the not-so-subtle hints that Draco liked her, but she greatly appreciated their weekly journeys back to the castle. They were the highlights of her week, every week since their inauguration, without fail.
When he had finally shown up, not much of a fuss was made by the students, and everything went smoothly for the rest of the class period.
Afterwards, Luna joined Draco at the side of the greenhouse, quickly initiating a light conversation and nonchalantly sauntering across the grounds. However, she soon observed that he was abnormally reserved in his responses, so she came to a halt.
"Draco, you seem awfully bland today. Is something bothering you? A Wrackspurt, perhaps?"
"No, Luna. No Wrackspurt is inhabiting my brain currently. What is residing in my brain is not a creature, but a question that I want to ask you, but am a tad afraid to…" he declared, trailing off at the end.
"What is it you wish to ask me?"
"I, er, I wish to, er," he stuttered out before quickly sputtering, "ask you if you would like to accompany me on a date next weekend."
"Oh, Draco! I would love to! However, the next time you ask me out, try to speak a bit slower," she reprimanded politely.
"Yes, Dear," he uttered quietly with a slight touch of embedded remorse.
If one were to sum up the following nine days for Draco into one word, they would almost assuredly use 'unpleasant.' He couldn't wander through the corridors without being on the receiving end of accusatory and demeaning points and laughs; he was the butt of all jokes and rumors, every waking moment of every day; he couldn't venture out into the common room without receiving various stares and unappreciative glares; and he couldn't enjoy a fine meal in the dining hall (thank Merlin for the Room of Requirement).
In all, he was all but condemned to a life of solitary confinement for a little over a week.
The only two positive phenomenons during those nine days were that nobody spread the word out to his father, and he got to walk with Luna again the following Wednesday.
However, things were about to change. It was now Saturday morning: time for his date with Luna.
The most unpleasant thing about her wasn't even about her - it was about how they were in two different houses and two different years.
The change wasn't happening fast enough. He still had a vague unpleasant feeling swimming around in his gut: he was forgetting something, but he couldn't remember what.
So, he made a checklist.
More money. Check.
Even more money in case the date is more expensive than planned. Check.
'Hmm… Something is missing from this list… Ah! I know! Pudding! What flavor is her favorite? Vanilla… no. Chocolate? No. OH YEAH! Dirigible Plum flavored!'
"Oh, Liddy!" he whispered into the wind.
A pop sounded and immediately, a house elf appeared. "Master Draco called?"
"Yes, I did call. I need you to compile all of the Dirigible Plum pudding that you can and have it ready for easy transportation in a half hour. Thank you, Liddy"
The tiny, timid creature popped away, and Draco returned to the mini-checklist.
Dirigible Plum Pudding. Check.
'That should be just about everything. Now, I just got to g-'
"Hey, Draco!" Blaise yelled, as he barged into the room, "Luna's waiting for you out in the corri- Whoa. Dude. It's already 9:30. You should be, at the very least, dressed by now."
It was a lucky thing that Blaise was the one to stumble upon her waiting figure in the halls. Blaise was the only Slytherin, aside from maybe the Greengrasses, who had no problem with Draco's new relationship with Luna.
"Thank you, Blaise. Can you go and tell her that I'll be out in a maximum of 6 minutes?"
"Sure," he said, already turning to head out and inform her.
When he was gone, Draco immediately summoned Liddy again.
"Liddy! Urgent business. I need that pudding in five minutes or less. And I don't need ALL of the pudding - just enough for Luna to be content."
"Master Draco, for Luna to be content, she needs more than we could possibly muster. I'll get you as much pudding as we can in the next 5 minutes, though," she stated while popping away.
'Okay, now that all of that is taken care of, I can finally get ready. If only I could find my trousers…'
Precisely five minutes later, Liddy popped in to drop off the pudding on the bedside table, where Draco, clad in semi-formal attire, was ready to pick it up. He shrunk it down and stuffed it into his bag, and proceeded to venture out to where his date was waiting.
"Good morning, Luna! Are you ready?"
"Yes," she said, rather ominously.
"Okay… then," he responded, beginning to feel a little nervous.
"Oh, Draco, you don't need to second guess yourself. Don't let the Wrackspurts get to you. Let's go and be merry!" She took his hand and began to skip down the hall, forcing him to skip along with her.
The skipping wasn't at all unpleasant; it was merely an unfamiliar and semi-embarrassing activity to him.
They ended up skipping the entire way to town: through the Great Hall, across the grounds, past the gate and McGonagall's little 'Checkpoint,' and down the heavily-trodden path.
When they arrived, Draco's eyes were bombarded with a dizzying array of foreign sights. Sure, he had been in Hogsmeade before, but that was only one time, last year, where he and his friends just went into The Three Broomsticks, had a couple of butterbeers, and stumbled back to the castle after the nightfall.
Looking around, he saw dozens of buildings with attractive front-window displays, and promptly got lost.
"Er, Luna? I haven't really been here often, so I don't know much about the places here. Do you want to go to any store or anything?"
"Just The Three Broomsticks. I've heard from the upper years that Madame Puddifoot's Tea Shop is an expensive place that has a poor ambiance and subpar food. Plus Madam Rosmerta is a good friend of my father."
"Oh, good. The one place that I actually do somewhat know."
With that, they walked into the pub, quickly getting seated at a booth along the right side of the room.
"What can I get for you two?" Madam Rosmerta asked them as soon as they sat down.
"I'll take a Butterbeer, and my date will have a…"
"Rosie, I'll take a Butterbeer as well. And can we both get Shepherd's pies? Neither of us had breakfast."
"Sure thing, Moon-pie! Two Butterbeers and two Shepherd's pies coming up."
"Thanks," Draco called out to Rosmerta's retreating form. Turning to Luna, he began, "You weren't kidding when you said that Madam Rosmerta was a good friend of your father!"
"No, I wasn't. In fact, she used to occasionally babysit me when Daddy had to go and work late at the office."
"Your dad... isn't he the manager of The Quibbler? The one with the long, complicated first name?"
"Correct you are. It's Xenophilius, but he has most people call him Xeno for convenience. Oh look, here comes Rosie with our drinks!"
"Two Butterbeers here. The pies will be up shortly."
Luna resumed where she left off after they gave their thanks for the drinks. "What about your father? What does he do for living?"
"My father… I don't like to talk about him all that much anymore. He is too bigoted to carry a conversation with. All he does is spout a continuous diatribe about Pureblood Supremacy. But, when he isn't off telling everybody that he isn't a Death Eater while secretly hoping for the Dark Lord's return, he runs an Apothecary, and sits on both the Wizengamot and the Hogwarts Board of Governors.
"Enough about our parents. I'm here to learn about you. But first, I have to ask, what exactly is in a shepherd's pie?"
"Traditionally, as well as originally, shepherd's pie is generally some kind of meat, usually lamb or beef, cooked inside of a mashed potato crust. Rosie here promotes a more healthy lifestyle, and so she adds peas and carrots in it as well. I usually skip over those. Don't tell her that, though."
"Thank you, and don't worry. Your secret is safe with me. Oh, and here they are, now."
"Here are your requested pies. Shall I bring you guys another round of drinks?"
"Sure, Rosie. That would be lovely!"
"Okay then. Two more Butterbeers, coming up."
After a round of thanks from the duo, they dug into the scrumptious delicacies laid before them. Not long afterwards, they received their second drinks, said "Thanks" again, and resumed their rapid consumption.
As Luna was finishing up with her meal, Draco remembered what he had brought with him. "Luna, I have a surprise for you."
"Hmm?" she replied, lifting her head up and allowing Draco to gaze upon her eyes for the first time since the food arrived. "What did you say?"
"I said that I have a surprise for you." He reached down into his bag and brought out the shrunken container of pudding, and enlarged it back to its proper size.
"No, no. Not yet. Before I give you the pudding, I want you to give me an ultimatum."
"I'll do anything for it."
"If you don't eat your vegetables, you can't have any pudding."
Her face formed an adorable pout. "Do I have to?"
While it was the cutest thing he had ever seen, his position didn't change. "Yes. To get any of your favorite Dirigible Plum pudding, you must consume every single pea and carrot in your pie."
If anyone were to ask, Draco would've sworn that he had never seen anyone scarf done vegetables so fast in his life, and he doubted he ever would. Most people would have described the 14 seconds it took her to wolf down the pesky green and orange shapes as a bit of an unpleasant scene, but not Draco; he would describe it as a brief period of bewilderment and fascination for him, even a tiny bit adorable.
He didn't even attempt to move as she reached for the bucket with a smug smile adorned on her face.
After the spectacle from moments before, it didn't faze him in the slightest when she was sliding the newly-emptied three pound bucket not 10 minutes later.
Soon after, they left the pub, leaving behind a generous tip (that was well-deserved), and they spent the afternoon strolling languidly around the lush pastures of the hillside, simply enjoying being around the other.
They returned to the Great Hall early enough to catch the conclusion of dinner, and afterwards wandered aimlessly until Draco had to return her to her common room before curfew.
A shared goodnight ended the blissful day for the two of them.
If anything was certain, Draco was going to do that again.