Author's Note: A long time coming, I know. Read my bio for specifics.
Disclaimer: Don't own, don't sue.
You've Got Mail: Ch. 14-From Russia With Love
Draco regained control of his voice quickly. "What the hell?" He asked angrily, dropping the letter to search for his wand surreptitiously. He'd barely even moved his hand when the spell hit him.
"Accio! Accio!" Everything flew out of Draco's pockets, from a piece of Drooble's Best Blowing Gum to a dented hip flask. It all landed in a pile at Ivanovich's feet, his wand falling on top as the crowning touch.
"Hey!" Draco shouted, feeling stupider for it the minute the interjection left his lips. Ivanovich simply grinned at him before casting a Binding Charm. Draco shot backwards toward a tree and felt ropes slide out of thin air to wrap around him. His former DADA teacher laughed heartily, as Draco groaned to himself. All this had been done in a matter of seconds since he'd arrived.
The sounds seemed to wake Ginny from her state of shock at seeing Malfoy appear. "I still say you won't get away with this! We'll escape, or-or the teachers will find us! Yes! No way they'll fall for your stupid tricks, just wait, you'll se-mmph!" Her voice, which had fast been rising to shrew-like proportions, was abruptly cut off by a careless flick of the ex-teacher's wand. She glared at him furiously, while still shrieking silently.
Ivanovich looked at both of them with steely eyes. "Now, I'm going to be over there for a little while, and I want you both to be good little children. No screaming, Mr. Malfoy, I'm sure the local creatures will find it most-" he bared his teeth in a savage grin. "Unwelcome." He left the clearing quickly.
Ginny paused for a moment in her soundless ranting to widen her eyes and open and close her mouth in fear. Creatures? Did he mean creatures as in magical animals? Instantly she had a vision of herself being sniffed at by a giant dragon, while Ivanovich laughed coldly and Malfoy-
She'd completely forgotten about him. She looked at him hopefully, trying to mouth some words, but he was looking away. His face was blank of any emotion she'd expect to see (rage, frustration, etc.), but she recognized the look he was wearing. It was the same look he had whenever she glanced at him in the middle of research, or when he was concentrating hard on homework. Instantly a thought leapt into her head: he's thinking of our escape.
Hopeful, ecstatic, Ginny settled down to wait, trusting her partner fully for once.
Draco screwed his eyes shut tightly. He had to figure out some way to escape, and get back the brooch.
A few hours later found Ginny and Draco still tied to their respective trees, now disgusted in addition to being bored and angry. A little while after he had left, Ivanovich had stormed back to the clearing, irately tossing the brooch on top of the pile of Draco's belongings. He only grumbled to himself, seemingly not noticing his two captives, as he started a small, smokeless fire. It didn't take long for the pair to figure out the source of his anger. He hadn't been able to make the brooch work. Irate, Ivanovich found a way to deal with his frustration, the same way he'd dealt with the first and final falls of the Dark Lord, and pretty much when anything in Ivanovich's life went wrong, from misplaced socks to the flu.
He got smashed.
Finished with his own bottle of foul-smelling alcohol (Ginny could smell it from
her tree several feet away), the drunken man staggered around, searching for more. He let out a triumphant grunt at seeing Draco's hip flask amidst the pile. The younger boy's eyes widened for a second as Ivanovich's hand groped for the flask, clumsily pulling it towards him and spinning open the cap. Ivanovich poured a steady stream of clear liquid into his mouth, gurgling and grinning like an idiot.
He finished the flask quickly and was about to toss it to the side when he paused for a second to stare at the thing with amazement and confusion. He lifted it closer to his eyes, and then he let out a roar, whirling on Draco.
"You Transfigured it! Dis, dis is de real brooch!" Ivanovich screamed. His accent was thicker now with all the alcohol coursing through him. "But how?"
"I always did get top marks in Transfiguration, you know." Ginny sighed at her partner's smug tone. Well, at least it was a relief to know he was still the same Malfoy, despite their hostage situation.
Ivanovich ignored, instead focusing on waving his wand at the flask. It took a few tries (Ivanovich kept swaying too much to concentrate) but finally the flask's exterior melted away to reveal a shining gold brooch, identical to the one he'd thrown on top of the pile of junk. Ivanovich cackled madly.
"I knew it! I knew it all along! Dat is vhy it vasn't vorking for me! I knew it couldn't be my powers, my powers deserve dis honor! Oho, you are clever, little Malfoy, but not clever enough." At this last sentence, he undid the binds on Draco. His legs long since having gone numb, the young man fell to the forest floor while Ginny's eyes flashed in fear and shock. There was a sickeningly hollow thud as Ivanovich kicked the struggling Draco in the ribs, once, twice. He reached down to haul the boy up by the collar, shaking him as Draco coughed weakly and tried to stand upright.
"Dis is going to be fun," Ivanovich said threateningly, raising his fist high. Ivanovich was sweating now, and swaying more than before. He lifted Draco higher, the younger boy weak in his grasp, and Ginny shut her eyes waiting for-
A few seconds passed, but there were no yells of pain. The only sound was, finally, a soft little thud on the leaves. Draco landed on his numb feet, stumbled for a second as the world tried to right itself, but finally stood tall.
Ginny watched in shock, but finally shook herself out of her daze. She tried to shriek, but was of course Silenced, so she had to resort to stomping her feet until Draco remembered her. He turned to look at her slowly, and for a second she thought he wasn't going to move at all, but then he grabbed his wand and said the counter-spell. The instant her voice was back, she gave a cry of pure relief and joy. Ginny hadn't liked not being able to yell at Ivanovich.
Ginny stared at her ex-teacher. "What happened to him?" She asked quietly, half in awe.
Draco was busy collecting his belongings, rolling the prone body over with a distasteful foot nudge. He didn't seem at all affected by their sudden freedom. "Sleeping potion mixed with Firewhiskey. (Ginny rolled her eyes at this; it was so Malfoy). I couldn't put in much of the potion or it would have exploded, so he'll wake up soon." He lifted his face to her while leaning over Ivanovich, and Ginny could suddenly see a flicker of worry in his eyes. The next second it was gone, to be replaced with his usual mixture of boredom and sarcasm. "Do you think you could bring yourself to move? We have to tie him up before we leave."
"Leave?" She echoed dully.
"Yes, leave. I hadn't planned on building a cottage here and spending the rest of my days with a Weasley and a murderer."
She blushed with anger and embarrassment, and began to help hauling Ivanovich away to a tree. The man was heavy, so it took a few minutes of panting and dragging on both their parts. As they worked, Ginny kept glancing at Draco, till he finally sighed. "Why are you staring at me Weasley? Or are you too poor to keep your eyes in your own head?"
"Hey!" said Ginny. "I thought our deal was no more family jokes!"
He stood upright with a smirk and swept his arm out to indicate the forest they were in the middle of. "Look around you Weasley. Do you think that a few stupid pictures matter to me now?"
"Oh." Ginny was quiet for a second, sobered by the reminder of their predicament. Then she remembered her original question. "So that flask really is-er, was-the brooch? That's the real one?"
He didn't answer, just stared off into space for a moment. When he did tell her it was the real one, his voice was oddly strained. She shrugged it off.
They finally managed to shove their old teacher against a tree rather carelessly, though by that time Draco was looking at the unconscious man with worry. "I think he might wake up soon," he said.
Ginny paled and looked around her nervously. "What should we do, where should we go?" Her voice had risen, and Draco could sense the start of a panic attack. He intervened swiftly.
"You start collecting your stuff, I think it's over there," he ordered kindly, waving at an edge of the clearing. "I'll finish this up."
Ginny searched a bit, and finally found the wreckage of her bag behind a fallen tree. She sat down on it and surveyed the damage. Most of her stuff was dumped around, but that wasn't too bad, she could always put it back. She sighed and bent down to scoop up all her underwear, simultaneously shuddering at the thought of that murderer going through all her unmentionables.
She had all of her underwear and her bras in her arms, and looked around for the bag to put it in. She finally spotted it, or rather, the ripped remains. Ginny groaned and trudged back to the clearing. She knew Draco still had his wand (she had no idea where hers was).
"Malfoy," she called as she got nearer. "I need you to do a spell for me, the git completely destroyed my bag."
Annoyed, he turned, caught sight of what was filling her arms and the insult died on his lips. "I-I," he stuttered, turning a faint pink. My Lord, those were lacy. "Weasley, you-"
"What is it?" She snapped impatiently. He pointed and let out a whoop of laughter. As Ginny followed his finger to the items in her arms, she bit back a shriek. She shoved them roughly behind her back, turning beet red.
"I-I'll just-" she broke off, not knowing where she was going in this highly embarrassing situation. Draco was still laughing, and finally, she resorted to her standard last option: fleeing the scene like a little girl.
She stumbled backwards quickly, her legs unfortunately colliding with the log she'd been sitting on earlier. Ginny fell flat on her back, causing Draco's laughter to reach wheezing, knee-slapping proportions.
"Oh Merlin," she groaned. She had no idea getting the wind knocked out of her hurt this badly. She could barely even move.
Finally, once her partner's laughter had subsided, he sauntered over to where she was laying, and looked down at her in a mixture of malice and amusement. It was a frightening combination, so Ginny just ordered him to help her up and be done with it.
He pulled her up forcefully by the arm, though a little too forcefully. Her body was sent crashing into his, and even once she'd righted herself, they were toe to toe and she was staring at the center of his attractive-looking chest, inhaling a mix of grass and sandalwood.
"You even smell rich," she murmured, half to herself. He caught that she'd said something, and looked down to hear, only to find himself staring right down into her delicate heart-shaped face.
They stood completely still for a moment, until they both heard the unthinkable: a groan from behind, the groan of a very pissed and very drunk ex-vampire hunter.
Ginny drew in her breath sharply, as all thoughts of what to do escaped her mind. Draco finally leaned down, gently and slowly, to whisper one word in her ear:
Ron yawned as he made his way towards the back of the library and his partner, Janet Bulstrode. He almost shuddered. Just a year younger than her rough sister, Janet was almost a carbon copy of Millicent. All she ever did was grunt and thrust books at him. He had yet to hear an actual word come from her mouth.
Checking the time, Ron let out a whuff sound of annoyance. Ginny and her partner (he refused to acknowledge that the git had a name) had already left. Alone. Together. Well, not alone together. With each other but no one else and-oh, he was even confusing himself by now.
But whichever way he spun it, the whole situation still stank of Malfoy filth.
Ron was slouching angrily and muttering to himself by the time he sat at the table, copying his partner's grunt of greeting. She looked at him in surprise. Usually he was a pretty happy bloke. The grunting was her job.
He moped in his seat like a wet biscuit, scratching out a rather unfavorable picture of a ferret in what looked like the fires of hell. Janet immediately understood.
"So your sister left with Draco today?" She asked.
His eyes widened. This was the first time he'd ever heard her speak. And it had to be about his least favorite person in the world.
"Yeah," he grumbled. "They left about three hours ago."
Janet, about to nod sympathetically, froze for a second. "No," she corrected. "They only left an hour ago. That's when Draco told Milly and I he was leaving."
Ron was so confused, he even overlooked the whole 'Milly' bit, which normally would have ensured at least a cackle. "Excuse me, I think I know my own sister. She left to meet McGonagall by the Forbidden Forest at seven!"
"Draco said he was meeting Professor McGonagall at nine outside her classroom!"
They were both standing by this point, sizing each other up angrily. Finally Janet stepped back and sighed.
"I think we have to talk to McGonagall about this," she said.
Ron nodded in agreement, and the unlikely pair set off.
Professor McGonagall looked up, looked down, rubbed her aching head, shut her eyes, and opened them again. Nothing. Ron Weasley and Janet Bulstrode were still standing in front of her desk, arms crossed as they waited aggressively for an answer to their predicament. They expected her to know the perfect solution, and she was still trying to process what they'd said.
Finally, she turned on her chair, and threw a pinch of powder into the fire. The professor yelled a name, and Snape's crabby head reared in the roaring flames.
"What?" He snarled. Snape saw the two students standing awkwardly behind the desk and his expression worsened, if that was possible.
The older woman inhaled deeply. "We have a problem, Severus."
Sprinting through the trees like madmen, clutching on to what few belongings they could have grabbed, breathing deeply with fear in their eyes.
This was not how Ginny had pictured their trip to Russia.
She was losing energy fast, and clutched at her partner to slow to a walk. They'd been fleeing for what seemed to Ginny like hours, before she finally sat down on a rock. "That's it," she told Draco, doubled over from a cramp. "We need to take a rest."
He hesitated for a second, looking behind them, and then nodded. He sat down also, back against a tree. "We can't wait here long. Ivanovich is probably up and searching by now."
"Cast a Hiding Spell on us," Ginny said through pants. "He'll get through it eventually, but it'll buy us some time."
Draco considered her suggestion for a second before nodding and saying the incantation.
They sat there, silent except for heavy breathing, when Draco stood. "I'll be back in a minute," he said vaguely, walking for some trees.
"Wait!" Ginny yelled frantically. She jumped up and grabbed his arm. "You can't just leave me!"
Draco stared at the hand on his arm until it slowly retreated back to its owner's side. "Weasley, I have to go to the bathroom," he drawled, with a small smirk.
"Oh." Feeling stupid, she sat back down and looked away. Draco almost laughed at her blush, before he disappeared among the trees.
Staring at her surroundings, Ginny suddenly felt the weight of their hopelessness crash on her shoulders. She rubbed a hand over her eyes, torn between her need for sleep and fear of the forest. Their various problems built up in her mind. No food. No water. Only one wand and a handful or so of trash to help. And to top it all off, a murderer after them. They were going to die in this godforsaken forest, and that was it.
She was so lost in her predictions of doom and gloom, that Ginny didn't even realize Draco was back until he sat down right across from her.
"You all right there Weasley?" He asked. "Your face certainly has that lovely look of constipation you usually get when thinking too hard…or thinking at all really."
Her eyes twitched as they met his in a glare. "Oh shut up," she said. "We have enough problems to worry about without you pissing me off every two seconds."
"Hmph, touchy," he muttered. There was an uncomfortable silence for a couple of minutes, until Draco coughed. "We ought to get moving again. We aren't safe here."
Despite the fact that her legs were screaming at the thought of more exercise, Ginny knew he was right. Nodding, she started to get up, and found herself staring at him while her pessimism replayed itself in her head.
"Malfoy," she said softly. He turned around to look at her quizzically. "I just want to say that…if I end up dying here…I don't really want to be surrounded by bad feelings, you know?" His expression had become more questioning, if that was possible. "So, I guess I'm sorry, for all our fights. If I had to pick a lousy ferret to die with in the middle of nowhere, I'm glad it's you."
He half-smiled at that back-handed compliment. "I get what you mean. I wouldn't want any other fire-headed weasel here with me either," he said, moving towards her. "And don't worry. We'll get out of here alive. Don't forget you're with the master of escape," he said lightheartedly, patting her shoulder awkwardly.
Ginny, positive she was about to die in some horrible way, took the opportunity to do something she'd never done before. She hugged him.
Draco felt a little dismayed when she did this. No one hugged him, it was so weird. He didn't want to send the poor girl over the edge, but this was really too much. Sighing inwardly, he resigned himself to the fact that his life would never make any sense, and wrapped his arms around Ginny as well.
Ron paced angrily outside Dumbledore's office. Snape and McGonagall were in there, discussing his sister's predicament. They weren't working fast enough for Ron, however, who was close to breaking down the door.
Finally, Dumbledore called him back in. The two other teachers were staring at him gravely, and Ron felt a pang of nervousness. It was just like his second-year. He hadn't been able to help her then and he may not be able to do anything now.
"Yes?" He asked anxiously.
Dumbledore's face was serious, and hardly reassuring. "Now, Mr. Weasley, before we jump to any conclusions about this…misunderstanding, we'd like to ask you some questions." Ron nodded, and the headmaster continued. "I know this may be hard but, we have to know. Is there any way your sister and Mr. Malfoy could have wandered off…er…voluntarily?"
Ron's head exploded.
Well, not actually. But it certainly felt that way to him. "You can't mean…as a…as a couple?" He asked slowly. The headmaster had one second to redeem himself before Ron pounced.
McGonagall sensed the danger and struggled to intervene.
"We simply want to cover all our bases, we weren't suggesting anything indiscreet about Miss Weasley."
Snape just rolled his eyes. "Answer the question, was it likely they'd be sneaking off for teenage lust or not?" He barked.
Ron sat there for a second, mouth opening and closing like a fish. "Ginny knows that if she ever, ever, EVER, went near a Malfoy voluntarily, our entire family would disown her right before killing the bastard in every way known to man," he ground out coldly.
There was an awkward moment of silence. "So I guess that's a no…" McGonagall trailed off. She turned to the headmaster. "If that wasn't it, then I guess we'll have to resort to our other idea."
Dumbledore nodded solemnly. "I had hoped it wouldn't come to this, but, Ron, I'm afraid there's just a rather troubling explanation left."
Ron growled impatiently, fists clenched as he waited.
"They've been kidnapped by Professor Ivanovich."
Ivanovich stalked through the trees angrily, taking care to smash as many things that got in his way as he could. He could feel the webs of a Hiding Spell slowing him down, but it only fueled his rage more.
"If only I could kill those brats so easily," he growled to himself after smashing a mosquito in the palm of his hand.
Why were things like this always happening to him? He bemoaned his pitiful life frequently, but this instance really took the cake. Ever since he was a little boy, running around his east European village smiting and blasting bugs, all Ivanovich had wanted was power. In school, when everyone else was out having fun, he was holed up in the library learning about dark magic. No one else understood. His mother spanked him when he was bad, ignoring his protests that dark wizards weren't spanked. His first girlfriend had broken up with him within two days, just because he'd casually suggested a little virgin sacrifice to prove her love. It was all so unfair.
As the words "Woe is me, woe is me" repeated in his head, Ivanovich continued on his angry way. He was almost too angry to
"How cute," he murmured coldly to himself from his spot behind the tree. Ivanovich clutched at his wand tightly, before stepping out in plain view. They barely had time to move before the spell hit.
Author's note: Okay, so I think there's only one chapter left, and no epilogue. It's sad to think that it's almost over…I had a lot of fun writing this (long hiatus excluded) and I think I want to continue with some more D/G, and ff's in general. I may even expand into Tom/Ginny. So if you guys have any story suggestions, send them on over with a review.