Chapter 1 - Potter?!
"Hey, mum, look at this."
"What is it darling?"
"It's a ring. Rather nice actually. There are two diamonds in it."
"Hand it here. Hmmmm. I don't know why your father would have something like this."
"Yeah, it's too simple. Maybe he got it off of a muggle."
"No, I don't think so. He would never take something muggle made. Oh, and look here Draco, see this knot around the band? That's a symbol of love; it's more common in Celtic wizarding families."
"Oh, cool. Hey mum, can I have it? I just think it would be a shame to let it go to waste. And every piece of jewelry I own is gaudy and has a huge M on it."
"Alright. But don't lose it. And if we find who it belongs to then you have to return it. It's not proper to keep someone's wedding band."
Narcissa Black-Malfoy and her son Draco continued to rummage through her husband's things, mostly due to curiosity, but also because they wanted to know what he really did on his free time. Lucius Malfoy, head of the Malfoy estate, had been sent to Azkaban Prison for atrocities done to the wizarding world, AKA being Voldemort's right hand man. Several death eaters had been to the manor demanding to be let in so they could retrieve many things that Lucius had left behind before that fateful day at the ministry when Lucius was caught red handed. The Imperius excuse wasn't going to work for him this time. Thanks to Lucius himself, his death eater brethren couldn't get into the house unless they were invited in, one of the many wards that the manor had. Narcissa had refused every man, or woman for that matter, to be allowed into the house. After about a week of being bombarded with cloaked figures, Narcissa and her son decided to see what was so important. The two first started with Lucius' study, finding secret vaults behind paintings, books that were really secret compartments, and quills that unraveled into rolls of parchment. The ring just happened to be in one of the secret books. Narcissa was unraveling one of the quills when Draco came across a map.
"Mum, I've found something. It's a map of the dungeons."
"Darling, you've been in the dungeons a thousand times; you used to play down there when you were a child," drawled Narcissa, not looking up from her rummaging.
"No, mum, there are rooms on here I didn't know existed." That made Narcissa look up, she stood and walked to stand beside Draco at the desk.
"Look, half these rooms shouldn't be here. See here, this room at the end of the south hall. That hall ends in a dead end. There is no room there," Draco stated, pointing to the spot on the map.
"Are you thinking what I'm thinking, dear?" Narcissa said, placing a hand on her son's back.
"If father has anything of dire importance it will be in one of these rooms."
"Yes, quite, shall we?" She said, motioning towards the door.
"After you, my dear mother."
The duo made their way down to the dungeons, which every proper manor had, and began to search the rooms one by one. Nothing interesting came up, except for the random torture chamber and the secret potions lab- which Draco assumed was used by Snape when meetings where held there. Narcissa was becoming bored and wanted to have tea, but Draco talked her into one last room, the room at the end of the south hall. Draco had a feeling about it. He couldn't quite put his finger on it; he had to go there, but not alone. He felt he might need a witness. The room in question was heavily warded, unlike the others.
"Mum, none of the other rooms were warded like this. We have to get in. But I don't know how to take the wards down," Draco said, getting annoyed because every charm he sent to the wards got sent back in his direction. "Something big is in this room, I know it."
"I agree. Here let me have a go. Being married to your father for so long has to have taught me something," Narcissa said while moving Draco back with her arm.
One by one, the mistress of the house took down each ward. A half an hour later and all the wards were down. Draco ran forward, nearly bursting with excitement and opened the door, only to find more wards.
"Ye Gods! What the bloody hell can possibly be in here?!"
Never being the type of woman to give up, Narcissa got to work on the other wards straight away. Twenty minutes later and the rest were down. Draco walked into the room first, raising his wand, 'lumos' then continued forward, with Narcissa following. The room was warm, unlike the rest of the dungeon rooms. There was a cot against one wall and a chair next to it. A toilet was in the left corner.
"Somebody has been living in here, mum."
There was a door straight ahead and it was slightly ajar. Draco pushed it open with his wand and inched his way into the room. His mother had her hands on his shoulders and was following close behind. Draco gasped when he saw a figure huddled in the corner. Narcissa saw it too. She mumbled something and the room lit up. Draco thought the body was dead. It was far too skinny and frail to be alive. It moved. Draco jumped. Narcissa gasped. There was a heap of black hair that stuck out every which way on the top of the body. Draco nearly dropped his wand.
"Potter?! Harry Potter?! What the bloody fuck happened?"
Draco continued his rant, but Narcissa's eyes were fixed on the man before her. He stirred when he heard Draco say 'Potter', and he took in a breath when Draco said 'Harry.' She couldn't believe it. There's no way. Her husband wouldn't. He's evil, but not that evil.
Hearing that, Draco shut up immediately and looked at the huddled man. The man stirred and slowly lifted his head. It can't be. No he looks just like Harry, that's Harry, his dad is dead. His dad, his dad... has brown eyes. Harry's are green. Holy shit.
"Mum," Draco's voice was a shaky whisper. "It can't be. Harry's dad is dead. Why... why did father do this?"
James was about half the size that a normal thirty something man should be. His hair was long and tangled. He was covered in dirt. He looked like he had just escaped from Azkaban. Draco wanted to be sick. Narcissa on the other hand didn't know what to do. She could kill him and nobody would be the wiser. But she had never killed anybody. No that wouldn't do. She never got along with James, but she didn't hate him.
"Draco, go upstairs and get the house elves to make a large meal. Run a bath, and prepare a room."
Draco nodded and ran out of the room, all too happy to be out of there. Narcissa slowly made her way to James. He followed her with unfocused eyes, slightly shaking. She kneeled down next to him and placed her hand on his shoulder. He flinched under the touch, but soon relaxed when he realized that Narcissa wasn't going to hurt him.
"James, can you walk?" her voice was a soothing whisper.
"I can try. My balance is off. I haven't had my glasses in... well I don't know how long." James' voice was sickeningly scratchy. Narcissa pulled her wand out so she could cast a balancing charm on James to help him walk; he cowered into the corner once more.
"No, please, no magic." He was frantic. She couldn't believe her ears. The mighty James Potter, afraid of magic. They must have really tortured him.
"Okay, then here, let me help you up."
Narcissa put her wand away and wrapped her arm around James' waist. She then wrapped his arm over her shoulders and lifted him up. They made the slow journey up the stairs and into the lounge where she placed James at a table so he could eat.