novelist!draco! i was scrolling through drarry fics and read a few like these, so i had to put in my two cents. just draco though, no ships (i might have hinted at drarry oops) mostly i'm just procrastinating on my homework and fics i haven't finished
. . .
— For the flowers. Thank you for being there, the dedication reads.
. . .
Of course, it's always cold in the manor these days. It seems like he's brought it in with him — he being Voldemort.
How long has it been? Two years? Three? I can't remember. I think it's three; it might have been four.
Once upon a time the mansion teemed with life, that I remember. My mother and the house-elves had done so much to it — the elves tended to the gardens and my mother tended to the insides, and the house was warm and full of her love. Then Voldemort had to go and rise from the dead.
The cold's been here ever since.
"Draco," calls my aunt Bellatrix from the hallway. "It's time for lessons!"
The Occlumency lessons. I think of them as teaching turned torture.
"Coming, Aunt Bella!" I reply.
. . .
Draco isn't sure how it happened. He has a job writing for the Daily Prophet and had thought that was the farthest he'd get to writing publicly, but apparently not.
One day Blaise tells him, "So, I got in touch with a publisher."
"I did. So you can —"
"I can...wow, Blaise, that's just — I — wow," stutters Draco.
"If that's what you're using in your novel, I hate to break it to you, but no one's going to read that shit."
Draco now narrows his eyes, having regained composure. "For that, I'm not giving you a dedication."
Blaise gasps in mock-horror. "We all know you'll write something else — you'll never escape me!"
"Watch me," says Draco playfully, but his mind is spinning.
. . .
After being administered the standard healing lesson from Mother, I feel like collapsing.
"Shh," she says. "We'll make it out of here alive."
We will, I assure myself, but there's another voice — a familiar one that sounds awfully like Father, one that's been there since sixth year — that chimes in, Will you?
. . .
"Oh, Draco — I'm so proud of you!" says his mother when he's at the manor to visit. She smiles the smile that Draco can't help but smile back to. "What are you titling it?"
"The Other Side," he replies. The Other Side of the war, of — well, everything. The Other Side of Draco.
"The Other Side," she repeats, breathlessly. "It sounds beautiful; it'll read beautiful, too, darling. You have a good quill."
. . .
Hogwarts is only a slight reprieve. Every hall I pass makes me think of how I almost ruined it, this magnificent place.
The Carrows are here. They smile at me and they say, "Draco, won't you do the honors?" to just about every horrible thing they do.
For the bad ones, I tell them I'm learning from the best.
For the ones where I can give mercy, I do.
The voice whispers, What are you willing to do to live?
As much as I can, I tell it.
It gives a kind of tsk sound, the same one Father makes when he's disappointed in me.
. . .
When Draco writes, he writes from the heart — he writes everything, and he bares his soul out.
He glosses over the more gory details and a little of the more personal ones. But he writes, and it feels cleansing.
. . .
They have Potter in the manor. I don't know how. But they do.
"Is he Potter?" asks Aunt Bellatrix.
I look at the person in front of me — and yes, it is Potter. I would recognize the face of my rival anywhere.
It would be so easy to say, "Yes," and get it over with. Then the Dark Lord will have won, and then I can live in peace.
But I don't want him to win. As long as Potter lives, there is a chance that things might get better.
If I tell them Yes, then they'll kill him. If I say No, they'll still kill him.
"I — I can't be sure," I say finally.
The voice sneers, Are you sure about that?
. . .
After it's published, people write about it.
Death Eater details Dark Lord's reign of terror, writes one.
Draco Malfoy dishes the dirt on his life, writes another. Draco laughs at that one. He hadn't, not really. He didn't say anything about Snape or Dumbledore or the Fiendfyre or that it was really Vincent's fault he died, or that he'd felt something deflate inside him once Potter had been presumed dead...
No, he'd written a lot, but it felt like the tip of the iceberg.
. . .
EPILOGUE: WHAT HAPPENED AFTER
After a few weeks in Azkaban, we're sent to the trials. Father is convicted, unsurprisingly.
My mother and I are not. She gets house arrest and I get mandatory community service for the summer. Mostly, it's because Harry Potter spoke for us. It's an odd thing, really. I spent so long hating him, but he ended up helping me in the end. I think I'm still a little bitter about that — I was never as good as Potter, anyway.
We complete our charges. I return to Hogwarts. People shoot me dirty glances all the while, but I survive with my N.E.W.T.'s. O's in everything but Defense Against the Dark Arts — in which I get an A.
After the whole fiasco, I just want to sleep, and maybe not wake up at all. My mother doesn't let me. On the days when I'm lazy and too tired to get up, she calls, "Draco," in that tone that tells me I should probably get up. I do. We eat breakfast together every day.
Sometimes she calls Pansy Parkinson over. She and I had a brief stint where we tried to date; that didn't work out. I've always preferred men, anyway.
Pansy and I drink tea and then she drags me out to Muggle London to some club where we drink and forget, and if I'm lucky I take someone home that night. Most of the time, I don't.
Mother calls Blaise Zabini over, too. Gregory's too busy grieving Vincent, and he blames me — I don't blame him for that.
Blaise and I read. Sappy romance novels with happy endings, fantasy books, historical fiction, utterly boring crap on goblin wars; but mostly crime novels.
We giggle over the trash and we screech over the best parts and mostly, we make sarcastic comments whenever the impulsive protagonist does something stupid. It's almost always that trait in every main character. I never get tired of it.
Some things are new. And some things remain.
The voice is still there. It's here right now as I write. It still sounds like Father.
The Mark is still on my forearm. It's a little scratched up from some of the bad days, and it's covered up by a different tattoo now, but it's still there under all those layers.
The dead are still there. Sometimes I think I can hear Aunt Bella screeching "Crucio!" or cackling in my ear, and I can hear Vincent scream as he's consumed. There are the others, too — ones my actions might indirectly have killed. And there are the others, who decided to do it themselves before the Dark Lord could.
Eventually, I move out. I move into a small flat in Muggle London, and I get a job at the Daily Prophet. They said they were hiring, and I always loved to write. So I signed up. I didn't think it'd do much good. But they interviewed me, and they hired me.
When I asked why, my boss told me, "You seem like a good kid. You're reformed." That had been odd. But I'd smiled.
Pansy and I have weekly spa sessions. She tells me the dirt on everyone. I complain about miscellaneous things.
Blaise and I have weekly reading sessions. It's the usual.
That voice is with me all the while — I second-guess each step, but I can fight it if I try hard enough.
Mother comes to visit. She looks at me with pride in her eyes. She hadn't moved out — she's frail but strong, and her only crime had been standing by the people she loved. She lives in the manor, and she cleans it up, makes it lively. She mourns her sister — "You don't know who she used to be. That's the Bella I miss," she tells me.
But when she comes to visit, she smiles at me — the kind of smile that I can't help but smile back at. It silences the voice for a while. That smile had always been a lovely thing to my father.
My mother begins to laugh more. She smiles more at me.
I didn't know if we deserved the justice we got. But when my mother gives me that smile, the one that lights up the entire world — the smile she deserves to keep, the smile she wouldn't have gotten in Azkaban — I know she does. She deserves to be happy.
And maybe; just maybe, I do, too.
. . .
The next book comes soon after. Life in Azkaban, it's called. Draco writes about the dementors. He writes about the prison. He writes.
The dedication reads, For Potter — thank you, and I'm sorry.
. . .
There's another one, too.
He calls it Slytherin Friendships. He writes about his friends. He writes about people who are not his friends. Mostly he writes about the positive. He writes.
He dedicates that one, too — For Blaise, my partner in crime.
Blaise cackles, "Told you you'd write me one."
. . .
There are more. He writes a mystery novel, a romance novel, and so many more.
One he dedicates, For Granger and her critical eye.
Another one is For the late Albus Dumbledore — you showed me a life.
The last one he dedicates To you.
. . .
to clarify, the first dedication is symbolic. narcissa and pansy are both named after flowers, and i thought draco might not have wanted to name them directly. i don't know if that was apparent, though. this might be the only time i'm using first person narration.