Last time: Lucius didn't jump but casually backed up a step. He glanced to Blaise, "I suggest you run now, tell my son I love him."
"I can't." Blaise was surprised how calm his voice sounded.
Lucius straightened, his features becoming even frostier as he pulled his breeding around himself as a shield. "That is a shame."
The dark lord billowed into the room, Bellatrix at his side.
Blaise found himself looking at Bellatrix. He found her glowing face and mad incandescent eyes safer than looking at her companion. Her madness made her unpredictable but she was just a wizard, her hand glowed where she clutched her wand, but he didn't fear her or her wand.
Feeling empowered, he dared a glance towards the Dark Lord and then couldn't look away as his fear fell flat.
Voldemort held magic within as Dumbledore did, but all he saw when he looked at the Dark Lord was another wizard. One covered in heavy glamour's, he blinked and could just see the handsome man hiding underneath.
Ron tilted his head, his red eyes narrowed and his eyebrows crinkled in confusion. "That's it? That's the dark lord?"
"He was much scarier before," Harry offered.
"He was," Draco agreed. "Terrifying."
Harry pointed towards Draco with a nod, "yeah exactly."
The more Blaise studied the Dark Lord the less he looked like other wizards. Rage built beneath his calm facade. How dare this wizard take the gifts partly given to him by EARTH and twist them into this unnatural folly. There were chunks missing from the soul in front of him, ripped away by Riddle's own actions. His magic was tainted, he glanced to Bella's arm and the mark hidden by the sleeve her dress. He didn't have to see it to know Riddle was feeding off his subjects.
Blaise did his level best not to show any of this on his face. Voldemort may not be a threat to him, but he was a threat to Lucius and Blaise wasn't too confident in his ability to keep him safe yet.
"You are not the orb I expected to see." Voldemort hissed towards him.
Blaise shrugged, "you were hoping for Draco or perhaps Harry,"
The Dark Lord's eyes glowed momentarily with a hunger that told Blaise he was never letting Harry or Draco near this thing.
"Sorry to disappoint." He watched the walls with a wary caution that Blaise knew the dark lord would think was directed towards him.
Voldemort looked away from him to Lucius but Belle didn't and Blaise knew she was his extra eyes.
"Lucius," the name was a hiss of long syllables that Lucius refused to flinch at. "I will not force you to stay by my side." He gave a large sigh of disappointment, "instead I'll let you go, but know this," he slid forward and while Lucius did not give a step he still leaned away as Voldemort wrapped a hand around his jaw, "when this is all over and I have won, you will remember you were given to me. You are mine. I allow you this, but when I have crushed the light you will come to me. Do you understand?"
Lucius nodded as the tight grip barely allowed him breathe much less speech.
Voldemort studied his face for several long minutes. "Do not fear so my boy. When you come to heel at my feet it will but a quick punishment then I will treasure you. One day you will be very thankful for my mercy." He released Lucius and turned from him, not looking back he called out, "let them leave my friends today is not the day." He left the room, Bella backed out behind him, her eyes and wand pointed at them until the door separated them.
Blaise sighed and shook his head as he looked to the walls and dark masses there. The shadows didn't talk to him per se but he could feel them humoring the 'Dark Lord', amused by his belief that he controlled them. They needed Voldemort right now and so allowed him the belief, but that's all it was.
The shadows made sure Blaise knew, even if they weren't at full strength and weren't completely on this plane, that they could have made him really fight for his release. Blaise didn't doubt it, but he knew they weren't strong enough to challenge him, not yet. They retreated with whispered vows and everlasting patience.
Blaise nearly stumbled as the shadows departed and the heavy weight of evil was gone. Ron blazed into his mind, a roaring fire of concern and want, then softer Harry and Draco. The strength and suddenness of their presence made him truly aware of how hard they had been pushing to stay with him.
He moved towards Lucius and spared a short thought to Vetter, as he stepped around him. However taking him in for the light wasn't possible, it would be blatant help. Lucius started to say something but Blaise couldn't wait any longer. He stepped forward and grabbed Lucius' arm, "now I'll take you to your son." He followed the pull. He wasn't sure how, one second he was Merlin knew where and then he was still walking but back at Hogwarts.
He watched as Ron dropped Harry's hand. Blaise marveled at Ron's eyes, which were still glowing red orbs and hair of wild reds. Ron paused under the scrutiny, unsure of how to respond, unsure how to approach. Blaise didn't have the same problem. He walked close enough to pull the other into his arms. Ron closed his eyes and slumped against him. He pressed a kiss into fiery locks.
"Draco," The soft whisper of the name caught their attention. Lucius stood in front of Draco, his hand cradling his son's face and staring at the electric silver orbs, tears glistened in his eyes.
Blaise absently noted that though Lucius had the same hold on his son that Voldemort had held on him, the absolute unyielding love made the Dark Lord's hold a mockery of emotion.
"Dragon, what have they done to you?" His voice was a harsh murmur, pained and wondered.
Draco raised his hand and brushed it through his father's hair, pushing it away from his face. "Da."
Blaise nearly swallowed his tongue. He'd never heard Draco speak with that much emotion.
Lucius made a noise that Blaise couldn't describe and grabbed his son into his arms and into a hug so tight Draco's feet left the ground. Though his face was hidden against Draco's shoulder, Blaise could hear the soft noise of thankful tears. Even Draco's quite chants of Da, had a wet sound to them. Blaise glance at Harry, who was happily standing by with a wide grin.
Ron nudged him and Blaise leaned in at his gesture. "Well that tears it." He sighed, "They'll have to kill us- we know they're human." Ron leaned forward and very casually pulled Harry back several feet.
Blaise snorted and tried really hard not to laugh. He did not want to be the first one the Malfoy's turned on when they remembered themselves.
Hermione was having a hell of a time finding the adults. For people who wanted to be told 'the minute' the boys awoke they sure were making it hard for her to deliver the message. She figured the Weasley's would be at the Ministry so she sent an owl and while she was there sent an owl to the others. She figured the feathered flyers would find them faster than she.
On her way back to the castle, Hermione tightened her resolve to let her romantic notions towards Ron go. It was only a crush and while it hurt now she knew it was the right thing to do. It was obvious where Ron's affections were. Besides, if she was being honest with herself, her crush was more about safety and familiarity than romantic love. She just loved them both so very much. It wouldn't take much to change her feelings into a romantic love, but maybe it was better to not walk that path. What if she had dated one of them and it had gone south? She'd face losing the two people that mattered the most to her, her best friends, her boys. No, it was for the best that Ron was with Blaise and sooner or later her heart would agree with her head.
"A healer?" Sirius questioned while he paced their rooms. He paused long enough to throw a look at Remus' sitting figure.
Remus, bent over an old and nearly ruined text, studied the words with squinted eyes. "Yes, I think so." He leaned back in his chair, "a healing in training. She might be the only one alive, besides Dumbledore, who was there when the orb was used last."
"Do you think he knows that?" Sirius studied their privacy wards while he spoke.
"Doubtful, she was in training, probably very young. Her presence is just a side note listed here. She wasn't mentioned at all in any of the libraries texts."
"He probably forgot about her."
Remus nodded in agreement. "Probably." He glanced around, grabbed up a parchment and wrote out a quick missive.
While he worked, Sirius dropped the wards. They couldn't afford to have them up for long without people questioning it. As soon as the wards fell Sirius felt small claws through his hair. "Get off," Sirius waved his hands over his head.
Remus chuckled, "good timing girl." Hedwig hooted with glee but released Sirius and flew between his waving hands and onto Remus' calmly waiting arm. He took the letter she had and traded it for the one he'd just written. He whispered lowly, "fast and careful, girl." He whispered a charm to help protect her and with a hoot she was gone.
"I don't think she likes me," Sirius complained with a mock scowl.
Remus rolled his eyes, "you tease her, you get what you deserve," he opened the parchment and stood immediately.
"What is it?" Sirius alarmed, followed him towards the door.
"The boys are awake."
Owls couldn't fly directly into the ministry, so Hermione's message was waylaid by the ministries' owl office. Where the message was promptly handed to a post boy, who decided Molly Weasley's parchment could wait till after his break.
Remus burst into the medical wing, his best friend in four legged form at his heels, to see Severus already there, pacing with impatience.
The Potion Master scowled at them before turning his back on them with a regal flick of his robes.
Remus rolled his eyes with long suffered fondness while Sirius growled lowly. Remus swatted the dog's ear. Two year olds the two of them.
The dog smoothly transformed into an irritated man, who scowled at the world around him. "What's this then?' He waved a hand at the still closed door.
Snape didn't even glance at him.
Turns out the Malfoy's didn't AK anyone who figured out they were human after all. Though Malfoy Sr. was rather intense as he perched on the bed with Draco in front of him. Lucius seemed completely emerged in every word from Draco's mouth and only looked away when Harry, standing next to Draco's seated form, added something.
Harry looked completely at ease, speaking up without care, his fingers ghosting over Draco's hair as he spoke. Ron couldn't understand it. Hero or not, Ron was not comfortable around Lucius Malfoy. He stood away, not exactly on the other side of the room, but close.
Blaise had followed his retreat and ducked his head enough to murmur. "Still kind-a scary isn't he?"
Ron looked away from the Malfoy's with a huff, "no. He never scared me." The new apparent youth did a lot to melt the icy fear the thought of Lucius brought to mind and Ron could almost pretend he'd never been scared.
Blaise squeezed his arm, "okay, tough guy." Blaise was nice enough to not call him on the lie.
And Ron was feeling kindly enough to not deck the bloke for patronizing him. He flinched as he heard Draco tell Lucius about Dumbledore's betrayals. He nearly interrupted when he heard Darren's name, but Draco did not go into details and Ron's stomach rolled so badly he went to the bed furthest away to concentrate on not being sick.
Blaise sat at the end of the bed at Ron's feet as Ron leaned back against the headboard and rested his head back above the board and against the wall. He stared up at the ceiling, trying not to think about Darren or what he meant, while listening to Draco gloss over his existence.
When everything was laid out Ron had a feeling he wasn't the only one waiting with baited breathe for Lucius' response. It had been Draco's idea not to share the full story with any of the adults in the first place and they had all agreed, knowing the possibility was high that they would take Dumbledore's side over theirs.
When Lucius finally responded Ron was actually jealous of Draco Malfoy.
Lucius didn't make it sound as if Draco was mistaken, or that he had misunderstood, or even that Draco was wrong, or been tricked in some way. Lucius believed every word Draco said and cursed Dumbledore for his trickery. The man stood, pacing and angry, and even in his ill fitting clothes was a sight to be reckoned with.
Lucius scowled as he looked among them and Ron felt himself tense when Lucius' eyes stopped on him. He didn't say anything for several seconds and Ron tried not to let his eyes go red or freak out. "I can understand using orphans," he gestured towards Harry, Draco, and Blaise, "but they allowed that madman to use one of their own children?" Lucius scowled, "Arthur and Molly must be mad. Had I been alive they would have never gotten Draco." Lucius scowled at the ground, his arms folded in thought, "it must be that Darren incident that keeps them so close and under Dumbledore's thumb. Why else would they willingly do this to their own child?" He muttered, seemly to himself, thinking out loud.
Lucius paused and looked to Draco, "You can't tell the Order," he looked ready to explain but Draco nodded.
"We know, we weren't going to tell anyone else but I knew you'd trust me." Draco raised his chin, almost a challenge.
One that Lucius met with a small smile and incline of his head, "but of course Dragon, my first loyalty is always yours."
HDHDHD -tell me your thoughts
So I need your input Hermione has been a very patient and understanding girl and I think she deserves a prize, who should romance this brainy girl?
Second, what or who has Dumbledore received from his 'friends' to distract the boys, I have a couple of ideas but would love some input.