Title: Veelas and Beasts
Chapter One: The Proposition
The dungeon was located in the murky depths beneath the house. Cobwebs clawed the walls and hung almost, if such a thing was possible, in a melancholy fashion from their perches on the stones. They say that houses take on persona of their occupants. In the case of the wizards, this fact is not so unrealistic nor quite so farfetched.
Meet Malfoy Manor, where the winds scream death but the butler nervously, yet nonetheless cautiously insists, "'Tis all your imagination."
It's hell, compressed into one singular structure. One singular, monolithic structure that towers above stretching, menacingly, impossibly yet very much amazingly upright. Currently this mansion was casting a deep ebon shadow over the wide, desolate expanse of the Malfoy gardens, rendering mere, innocent statuettes of angels (ironically enough), deer and squirrels into twisted, grotesque, and deformed images.
The Malfoys, not unlike the rest of the old wizarding blood elite, were rather behind the times. It seemed that they were almost stuck in a perpetual time rut. Their house, a testament to hundreds, quite possibly thousands of years of Malfoy aristocracy- a gothic castle standing erect, untouched by the passages of time.
The only thing that had aged as mentioned earlier, was the dungeons. The overpowering smell of dingy mildew, caked with dust and filled with scent of rotted animal attacked any visitor that set foot in this sarcophagus-like domain. Surprisingly enough, the Malfoy dungeons currently did not house prisoners, nor even humans. The Malfoy dungeons were a treasure troves of creatures, mythical and legendary alike. All very much illegal.
Walk past the caged chimera and the hundred headed serpent and take a turn towards the left past the wooly mammoth and screaming banshee, and you would find a emaciated, faceless veela. Her ghastly figure sitting on the floor and her empty, lumpy, face featureless- except for four ill shaped holes. Apart from one particular slot which housed an eye, the rest were round and pitiless, almost too precise in their placement to be random. The hole that was her nose moved slightly, a motion indicating that she was sniffing the air- although, this action was likely more out of habit rather than actually possessing the ability to smell. Her large oblong mouth opened wide and closed, taking in a series of deep labored breaths.
The veela cowed as a hand touched her shoulder. She turned her face left and was met, nose to nose with her son, Draco. Two guards flanked his sides and they pressed their wands dangerously close to his body. Draco looked as if he had difficulty restraining himself. His adams apple bobbed up and down as he gulped down a sob, "Merlin mother, what did they do to you?" He asked, his normally emotionless face, pained.
The veela, Narcissa Malfoy, the former beauty whose visage rivaled that of the Helen of Troy, stared at him with her one remaining eye.
Narcissa continued to stare, wishing to speak but unable to do so. She opened her mouth but all that came out was a deep throated gurgle. Draco put his finger over her mouth stopping her from attempting to speak further.
He saw now that his mother was missing her tongue.
Draco brushed his hair from his face, irritated. He stood in a room, alone with Voldemort and his two guards.
The vision of his mother's torture ravaged body still flashed rather vividly through his mind. He did not even recognize her when he first saw her in the dungeon. Now, her face was something else entirely. Her body was dirtied, caked with dried blood, naked. Not only did her state hurt her physically, Draco was sure, but mentally too.
For a woman as vain as Narcissa, Draco could not imagine the blow to her pride, her situation must have given her.
Draco asked Voldemort, stone faced, "Was it absolutely necessary for you to hurt her so?"
The edge of Voldemort's lips twitched, evidently amused at Draco's words. "Yes, it was a necessary as a matter of fact. I am well aware that you would not have came back if we did not send you that picture of her- or at least come back to us quite as quickly as you did."
The Dark Lord chuckled.
"Most importantly however, I had to set an example for the other Death Eaters as well. No one becomes a traitor to my cause without paying the consequences. I am sure you were aware of that before you left," Voldemort cleared his throat, "Draco, explain to me first if you want your mother released, why exactly did you decide to turn against us? Do not bother to lie because I will of course, know."
Draco averted his eyes from Lord Voldemort's knowing full well that the Dark Lord would not be happy with his answer, "I just did not believe that you would win the war. I was not positive of course, so instead I left to Durmstrang because I knew that there I would be labeled neutral."
Voldemort's eye brow shot up, "Our side? Lose? Foolish boy. Everyone here on this side of the game knows that, that is highly unlikely."
Voldemort's fingers wrapped around Draco's collar and the Dark Lord pulled Draco closer until they were only inches apart. With a soft hiss, he said, "I may have failed my first time around, Mr. Malfoy but I assure you, I do not plan to fail again. Believe me Draco, if I were not in need of your services right now, you would have been dead long ago. I do not take kindly to traitors."
Voldemort flung Draco back as he let go of his collar. Draco stumbled, nearly falling. For a man who looked as frail as Voldemort, he sure held a surprising amount of strength.
"Mr. Malfoy, I propose to you a deal. Do what I ask of you and you will get your mother back."
Draco knew that this was coming without hesitation said, "I will do anything, my lord. Just ask it."
The Dark Lord lips twisted into an overly saccharine smile, "Funny how you are suddenly so willing."
"Mr. Malfoy, a second source has informed me that as long as Potter continues to live my life continues to hang on the balance. I cannot risk having him alive."
This was not the first time Draco had heard the news. He could not honestly say he was very surprise. "Go on," he probed.
"Right now, Potter is confined at Hogwarts along with his relatives. Because of an old protection charm caste upon him as a child, Potter will always be safe under the roof of his relatives. Therefore, Dumbledore is adamant about keeping him there and as long as he continues to stay, there are no possible ways for us to kill him.
"There are always charms to lure him out," Draco suggested, not stopping to think that maybe Voldemort had already considered this.
Voldemort shook his head, "It cannot be done. There are many dark magic spells designed for this purpose but Dumbledore, of course has set a spell, curse, portkey and potions tracker. Anything we try to use at Hogwarts, Dumbledore would be alerted immediately."
"What do you want me to do then?"
"Ah, good question. After careful examination of the tracker we discovered a small flaw in the design. The tracker can detect magic but it cannot however, detect natural magic."
Voldemort's eyes shined.
"Before I go on further with my plan, I must ask you, are you able to go back to Hogwarts? Will Dumbledore accept you back to school?"
Draco nodded, "Before I left for Durmstrang, I told him that I wanted to leave because I wanted no part in this war."
"And he actually believed you?" Voldemort raised a skeptical eyebrow, "I know Dumbledore to be a trusting old badger, but the man is hardly a fool."
"Well, of course he did not believe me- initially, anyway. I allowed him the apply the truth serum on me."
"So you are saying that Dumbledore will allow you back to Hogwarts?"
"No, I am not saying that he will. I am merely saying that it's likely he will."
"Ah, that is good enough for me then." Voldemort walked to a little table in the middle of the roomed. He picked up the cup and took a long, cool sip then he turned his attention back to Draco, "Mr. Malfoy, I am well aware of the fact that you are part Veela- and an unregistered one at that."
Draco merely blinked- for the first time tonight, he was genuinely shocked. No one outside his family knew that he was part Veela. His father made sure of it. The Malfoys were suppose to be pureblooded, untainted- if rumor got out that the Malfoy heir was a dirty half-blood…
"How did you know?"
"I have my ways," Voldemort smiled, "Draco, I want you to go to Hogwarts and try the best you could to lure Harry Potter out of the castle- of course, using this so called "hypnotic powers" of your veela abilities. I doubt he would come out otherwise. When you are finally out of the safety confines of Hogwarts do not hesitate to kill him. Kill him instantly. You are a smart boy, Draco, so do try not to be too obvious about it. Any suspicion on Dumbledore's part, could render this plan a tremendous failure. Mr. Malfoy, do this and you will get your mother back, I give you my word. Do you agree?"
Draco was silent.
Certainly... he did not wish to kill anybody.
However, at the same time, he had to admit, he would go at any lengths to free his mother and if he thought about it deeply enough, he realized that if this act could stop his mother's pain, then killing someone was not a very difficult choice. Draco was one to care, in his own distant, aloof way, about family and friends but when it came to everyone else- who gave a fuck about everyone else? Besides, Draco thought logically, if really had to kill anyone, the boy who lived would certainly not be among the last of his list.
Draco stared at Voldemort in the eyes, with his voice clear and enunciated, he replied,
"Okay. Kill Potter. I got it."