A/N: Wow, thank you everyone for the positive feedback! Karma goes to Lisa-Marie (Tomsbabe136) for helping me get back to writing this. Sorry for the long wait, I hope this chapter is worth it. Small not, there are several little scene's going back in memory, I'm sure you'll understand.
Disclaimer: All Rowling's, well, with the exception of a few characters, and the main plot.
Warning: This chapter has violence, strong language, and sexual tension. Please read with caution.
The Flower and Dragon
Or perhaps in Slytherin
You'll make your real friends,
Those cunning folk use any means,
To achieve their ends.
It was several moments of silence before anyone spoke, and it was Pansy too;
"Potter?" She half whispered, half choked.
There was no way she had ever expected to see Harry Potter, with all his heroic glory, standing in like that. His green eyes had a glint, one that Pansy couldn't even read. She hated that smirk he was wearing, she would have loved nothing but to rip it off his face and feed it to the Giant Squad. She hated every aspect about him; his hair, his face, his Quidditched toned body, his laugh, and most of all she hated his scar.
"What are you talking about?" snapped Pansy, moving forward to keep the space between the three tighter. "Double crossing?"
"Harry…" Blaise muttered, giving him a half frown as he spoke, "don't, not yet."
"She'll find out eventually, Blaise. It might as well be know."
Pansy was already lost, and they had yet to tell her anything she hadn't already knew. God, boys were unreal. Why couldn't they just spit it out already? What was it about them beating around the bush? She huffed.
"She's not ready, Harry. She still needs more time." Protested Blaise. "He doesn't want her to know. Not yet."
"There's been enough time wasted, and I'm sick of watching her mop around," Said Harry, narrowing his eyes at her to get his point across. "First thing, first, Parkinson you and I need to work out a deal."
"Like hell we do," snapped Pansy. "You can save your heroic acts for sweet Godric. No way on Salazar's life would I make a deal with you, Potter."
"Listen Parkinson, if you really want to know what's going on, and where Malfoy is, you'll do yourself a favor and for once, forget this stupid pride of yours. It's doing you no good anymore. Nobody cares about who your father is or what blood you are anymore. It's this stupid pride that got you Slytherin's in this to begin with. Now, listen."
Pansy blinked at Harry, unable to say anything as her mouth fell open and then closed, with so little as a hitch of breath. This wasn't the same boy she had seen on the train today. He was frail, and worried, but now he so powerful she was almost frightened. It was like a completely different person.
"Fine," said Pansy, softly.
Harry had a small grin twitching at the side of his lips. She so bad wanted to bite it off. "Good. Now, first, if we are going to be sharing this common room, you and I need be able address each other properly. I'm Harry, not Potter. Hermione is Hermione, not Granger." Harry went on to say, "You will be Pansy, not Parkinson to us."
"I can deal with that." Pansy sniffled in the air. God she really was getting into something.
"And I'm Blaise. But you should know that," Added Blaise, grinning widely at them both. "Well, aren't you two cheerful," said Blaise, when neither of them smiled are laughed at him. He rolled his eyes and sat down on the sofa.
Harry gave him a thespian look and then another at Pansy before saying, "You should sit down as well Pansy."
"Just sit," interjected Harry, harshly. She didn't do it nicely though. It was more a death glare and then she threw herself down into the cushions, folding her arms over her chest, and scowled. "Now then, Snape…" Harry muttered, his fingers toying with his chin. "Double crossing."
"Merlin Potter, can't you just spit it out?" Shrieked Pansy. She was getting sick of the same little circle he was making.
"Calm down. I'm trying to think."
Pansy huffed. "Well, then stop thinking and just tell me." She ordered.
"You don't want me to come right out and say it, Pansy. You wouldn't understand."
"Try me," said Pansy, giving Harry a small smirk.
"Okay," replied Harry, still toying with his sharply cut jaw. "After the death, Snape took Draco back with him after making a deal on both sides. And ever since have been hiding out under false pretenses."
"Is that all?" Asked Pansy, blinking. "That's all you had? You got me worked up, for that? Merlin, Potter. I had figured all this out by now---,"
"Well, then apparently not."
Pansy snorted. "What do you mean apparently not? I knew this from the beginning. Draco was suppose to kill that filthy--- Dumbledore, but Snape beat him to it, because Snape wanted to be the Dark Lords best man. Not some sixteen year old. He killed him they ran away. Now their hiding out. I've known this almost longer than you." She uncrossed her legs and slouched back into the sofa, sighing.
"You think that's what happened?" Asked Harry, stunned.
Blaise sighed, "Really, Harry I don't think we should…"
"No Blaise, it's time she knows the truth." Harry hissed threw gritted teeth. "You don't listen do you, Pansy? Draco didn't kill Dumbledore because Snape got there first, he did it because Draco was too weak and scared. He chickened out. He couldn't kill him. I watched him, Pansy. I watched as he told Dumbledore what was going on. I watched him cry. Dumbledore offered to protect him, Pansy. Offered to protect him, his family, and anyone else he wanted."
Pansy breathed, in and out before she opened her mouth, "Liar."
"You wished. It's that bloody ego and pride of yours. That's what it comes down too. Your pathetic." Retorted Harry, venomously.
A dull scowl mustered its way to the young witches lips, she knew that Harry was right, but wasn't about let him win. It was her pride that got in the way. But how couldn't? She had been raised to never show her true emotions, to never actually allow herself to succumb to wallowing level.
"Your one to talk, Harry," replied Pansy, coldly.
Harry casted her a inquiring look, his thick rimmed glasses falling down the bridge of his nose. He pushed them up with his finger, and frowned.
"What does that mean? I'm one to talk?" Mocked Harry, narrowing his eyes at the raven hared girl. She wasn't like other's girls, she knew how to fight back.
"You talk of being pathetic, yet here you sit, reprimanding me for actually caring about someone. You and Weaslett? What happened? Where you not getting enough?" Asked Pansy, acidly, and then throwing her hair over her shoulder.
Blaise stared at them both. His jaw locked tightly, dark eyes darting between the two. He knew that telling Pansy the truth wasn't going to be easy, but that had at least thought she'd be able to handle some of the truth. He gave a small sigh, shaking his head as the two bickered.
"This isn't about Ginny and I," spat Harry. "This is about Draco."
"Is it? Because I thought we already got passed that subject, and moved on to how pathetic I am." Snapped Pansy. She wasn't going to let him win, not yet.
"You don't give up, do you?" asked Harry, giving Pansy a strange smirk.
An enticing grin slipped the young witches lips as she spoke, "Of course. Parkinson pride," retorted Pansy. "Now, stop this cute game and get back to Draco." She snapped, composing herself to normal.
"I've told you the story, Pansy. Now think about it." Warned Harry, knuckles tightening by his side as he looked at with his bottle-green eyes pointed at her sharply. "Draco couldn't perform his task, because of his mother and Snape. You see, when Draco went to finish off Dumbledore, Pansy, he knew he wouldn't be able to. They offered him everything he wanted, but there was one problem: Dumbledore still wasn't dead."
Pansy sighed. "This isn't making sense, Potter---,"
"Harry," reminded Harry, scathingly. "I knew you wouldn't understand."
Blaise, who had been strangely quite suddenly perked up. "Well then, Pansy I think you should go to bed!" He exclaimed in a rather dry, but relived tone.
Both Harry and Pansy looked up at him. They both wore the same, vivid expression on their faces; Lips pressing into tight lines, brows weaved, and eyes narrowed.
Salazar, Blaise cursed to himself, this is really getting out of hand. He wanted to tell Pansy everything he knew, where Draco was, where he had been, what had happened, why, he did, but knew that there were details left for Draco to fill in, if and when he ever returned to his best friends. But it was Pansy who needed him the most. Pansy had been there for Draco all along, helping him, even when Draco hadn't allowed her in on his secret, yet still she followed him. There were certain pieces of a puzzle that Blaise would never be able to fill.
Blaise sighed, loosening the Slytherin tie around his neck and plucking a small emerald-stud pen form the tongue of his tie as he said, "Well, Harry, I don't think this is going to end here. We might as well get comfortable."
"Yes, I suppose so…" Muttered Harry in a causal voice, glancing at Pansy. He swiftly discarded his tie as well and then began to unbutton the first few button's of his dress shirt and cuffs. "You might want to take that off as well."
Pansy glanced down at her own tie and sighed, "I suppose so. If you'll excuse me for a moment," said Pansy, rising from her seat in the sofa.
"Where you going?" asked Blaise, "You don't need a mirror to take your tie off."
Pansy's dark orbs rolled as she spoke, "No, your quite right I don't, Blaise. But unlike you, I have to wear these heels all day and stockings. It's rather hot, and I would like to change into something a little more breathable."
She bide them a small node of the head before trailing down the stone hallway. She was surprised when she found there were was more than one door. She opened the first one to find a rather feminine looking bathroom, in the corner she could see her own toiletry resting on a small shelf. The next two doors lead to smaller rooms, one seemed to be a study, and the other was completely empty.
When she reached the last door, Pansy could hear a faint sigh escaped the crevice beneath the door and then a voice. She couldn't quite make it out, but she knew she had heard it before. She pressed her ear to the door, hoping to hear a bit more.
"…Oh Ronald, don't be ridiculous! Look, Draco's not going to just show up here unannounced. He knows that it would be too much risk. Besides Professor Snape will stop him."
"Really, what's the use of him Hermione, all he does to sulk anyway."
Pansy blinked and stepped away from the door. So they all know where he is? Merlin, this is a conspiracy! Why can't they just flat out tell me without all the riff-raff in between? Pansy shook her head. She had to get to the bottom of this. She needed to play her card right.
As loud as she could, Pansy gave a dark rap along the mahogany-door. The voices both gave a small gasp. Pansy stared at the door for a second, blinking as she reviewed her plan in her head. Her fingers trailed the impressions as she waited for Hermione to pull the door open with a red face and Ron sighing behind her.
"Pansy," Began Hermione, moving away and shooting Ron a rather conspicuous glare, "Ron was just leaving."
"I was?" Questioned Ron, looking Hermione with a small smirk. Hermione quirked a brow. "Oh yes, I was. Um, it's getting late. Good night Hermione… Parkinson."
"Ron." Dazed Pansy, in a dry tone.
Pansy stepped into her room as Ron stepped out, closing the door behind her. It wasn't a very large room, almost the same size as her own bedroom as home, though it was dressed in fine material's of cream-white and dark green. There were two beds, larger than their normal four-poster beds, an armor, and a few other pieces of oriental furniture. Hermione was busy at her bed, scribbling feriously on a piece of parchment and trying to ignore Pansy completely.
"A lovely night," drawled Pansy, moving to the opposite bed, her trunk placed at the end.
Hermione nodded. "Yes, lovely… Are you going to bed?"
"No," sighed Pansy. "Our little conversation was taking to long. These robes are hap hazardous." Said Pansy, rummaging threw the trunk and pulling out a large sack.
"Is your trunk charmed?" Hermione blinked and studied the small trunk filled with almost twenty books, a broom, and several little parcel's. "That's not allowed you know."
"Is it?" Questioned Pansy, quirking a brow and pulling a pale pink gown from her bag. "I hardly doubt we'll have a problem, Hermione. My father charmed it, not I. No one will say anything."
"But you're a Head Girl. You should set examples, Pansy!" Hermione looked slightly ruffled. She slipped from the bed and moved to a window, opening it to allow a small breeze enter.
Pansy laughed bitterly. "As I already stated. No one will find out. Will they?" Pansy looked at the girl with pointed eyes, lips curling into a smirk that she knew would intimidate the young girl. When Hermione didn't reply back, Pansy threw her a chocolate frog she found at the bottom of her charmed trunk and bounced on her bed. "Look, Hermione, let's get one thing straight. I don't like you. You don't like me. Don't expect me to giggle at you or your friends. I don't want to be stuck in here with you any more than you do, but while I am, keep your nose out of my life, and I'll keep mine out of your."
Pansy watched as Hermione soaked up her words, and blink repeatedly. She really was sight, Hermione was; Pansy hadn't really noticed how much different she looked form when she first met her. Sure, she still had the same busy brown hair and finely structured face, but she looked much more mature and feminine. Pansy sighed and pulled her jumper off, not even bothering with pulling her drapes around her bed close.
"You heard me didn't you?" Asked Hermione, softly sifting threw the pile of parchment on her desk.
Pansy nodded. "It was hard not to." Said Pansy with a small smirk on her face, unbuttoning the cuffs of her dress shirt and slipping it off. She quickly pulled off the rest of her school uniform, slipping the pale pink gown on while Hermione stared out the half perched window. "So, Gra--- Hermione, why's Ron staying in the Head's dormitory?"
"Oh," Started Hermione, blushing when she looked over at Pansy realizing that she was changing, "Um---,"
"There's no need to lose your voice, Hermione. It was a simple question." Pansy said as she finished dressing.
"He and Harry are working together…" Countered Hermione is a ruthless tone.
Pansy nodded her approval and went back to her own things, completely ignoring the brunette who was eyeing her suspiciously under her thick eyelashes. Pansy could almost sense her eyes on her. She quickly finished changing and putting some clothing away into the armor. One thing about Pansy many people didn't know, was her need for organization, okay she wasn't like Hermione, but she kept all her things in a special order, her shoes lined up perfectly, robes folded and pressed properly, her books placed on the shelf in alphabetical order, everything had a place, and Pansy liked to keep it that way.
Once she had finished, Pansy turned back to Hermione, ready to bid her goodnight as she left, when the Gryffindor stopped her saying, "Tell Harry I said to use the memory."
"What?" Questioned Pansy, hoarsely.
"Tell Harry to show you his memory." Pansy blinked at the girl. "Just do it," Hermione ordered in her usual bossy tone that much resembled McGonagall's. Pansy nodded and started for the door when once more Hermione stopped her, "Not everything is as it seemed, Pansy. Remember that."
"What ever, Hermione." Retorted Pansy, rolling her eyes and closing the door behind her. She knows everything… Merlin I hate her.
Pansy strolled back down the small hallway and stopped when she entered the common room once again. Blaise was lounging on the sofa, staring sternly at the fireplace, while Harry had an animated conversation with him. Both sets of eyes quickly snapped toward the witch as she entered. Blaise gave a faint whistle and winked cutely.
"Nice nightgown, Pans."
Pansy rolled her eyes. "Shut up, Zabini," Retorted Pansy, giving the caramel-skinned boy a small smirk and turning to Harry to say, "Right, let's get on with this. Your golden-girl suggest you show me a memory…"
"What?" Scoffed Harry blinking.
Just as Pansy went to open her mouth to speak, Hermione stepped into the room and beat her to the job, "Show her the memories of Dumbledore, Harry." She demanded in her usual bossy tone. "Well, just do it! It'll make this all go quicker and smoother, Harry. She's right, she has a right to know."
Pansy blinked at the Gryffindor, stunned at what to say. Hermione just nodded her head to her as Harry stood up, walking over to the small satchel on the ground and grabbing a quill. The three other's watched as he transfigured the quill into a large bowl and then plopped the cork off a bottle he pulled out of his satchel.
"Hermione, I think we should first---," Harry started, but this time Blaise cut him off saying, "No Harry. Hermione's right. She needs to know the truth."
"Thanks," Mumbled Pansy, looking slightly abashed and appalled at her house mates.
Harry sighed and sat down beside Pansy, settling the bowl full a wispy, silver substance, that neither seemed to be gas, not liquid. His quickly brushed the dark hair from his face and pushed his glasses up. "This is a pensive---,"
"I know what it is. Let's just get on with it." Pansy hissed, leaning over closer to the porcelain bowl and watching as a dark figure formed before her eyes. "This better be worth it, Potter."
Pansy took a deep breath and then plunged herself forward. Her whole body felt lighter than normal, yet completely whole as she became another fragment of the memory. She landed with a thud against the stone flooring, she same as the rest of Hogwarts. When she rose, she brushed off the invisible dust, looking around. At first it was all black, but slowly, figures of a wizard and a witch formed.
"Albus, what are we going to do? We can't just---"
"Nothing, Minerva. There's nothing we can do. The fate has been made." Said Albus Dumbledore, leaning over into his pensive, emptying himself of his thoughts, sadly. "This must be done."
"Do nothing?" Minerva raved, half shrieking, "Albus, the boy, he needs you."
Albus moved away from the large stone basin before him, his watery blue eyes blinking. He hadn't a clue, him, a man of such wit and wise words, had nothing to say that would comfort anyone. The smallest sigh escaped the elderly mans lips. He stepped closer to his desk, picking up a quill and scribbling a quick message down and then giving it to Fawk's to send it off. Fawk's cried a faint melody and disappeared into the night.
Minerva practically growled with frustration as she spoke, "A time like this, and your sending messages?" her hair was falling loose from her tight bun out of anger and emotion.
"I'm sorry, Minerva. It must be done," Stated Albus, calmly given the situation. He ran his long, withering fingers threw his silver beard. "I'm going to train Harry myself. I'm going to teach him everything I know. He will have to finish the prophecy without me."
The time had come and the decision was made. Albus was going to give himself up for the chance that the Wizarding world would survive. It had only been recently that Albus had gone to fetch Harry from his mother's family that he realized he wasn't going to be there for him when the time came to fight Voldemort. And now, he stands in his office at Hogwarts School of Witch Craft and Wizardry, watching the time fly by.
Minerva, his good friend for so many years, was standing there before him in tears. He had rarely seen her in tears. Usually they were tears of anger, and she had to have been shrilly flustered still. She was a woman of determination and power. She didn't hold emotions like many witches did. No, she held them inside, allowing them to cause her blood to boil. But now she was crying tears of grief. As much as it pained him to watch her like this, there was nothing he could do.
"Please, Minerva. It must be done. I have sent for Severus. We must discuss what we shall do." Albus said softly, his blue eyes sparkling still. "He's the only one who can make this work now."
As soon as he spoke, there was a faint pop in the room, and there stood Severus Snape, holding the parchment that Albus had just wrote upon. He looked just as grizzled as Minerva. His greasy black hair was haggard and limp, framing his pale face. His black eyes seemed to be made of glass. He took a look at the headmaster and then at Minerva and sighed, knowing just what this "meeting" Albus had wanted to talk to him about was.
"Severus. Glad you could make it. I do hope my portkey didn't take you by surprise," Charmed Albus, smiling softly. He held out a small bowl of colorful candies, "Exploding Frutticremes? They're new, from Wizarding Wheeze's. Who would have thought they would come up with such a unique sweets?. They're quite nice if I do say so myself."
Both adults looked at each other frowning. Neither of them was about to try anything that Weasley's made. Minerva because she knew those two, to well to know that there would be something unnatural about them. And Severus wasn't going to touch anything made by a Weasley. He had, had enough of them already.
"No thank you headmaster." Snape commented. He could practically feel Minerva beside him give a sigh of relief. "Sir, what is it you wanted to talk about?"
"Ah, Severus… Alas we have come to a decision. You will follow threw as planned and I shall not stand in the way."
"No buts Severus, it is final." Albus ordered sharply, though his face remained just as composed has usual. "When it comes time, you will proceed with what needs to be done. During the time of school, you shall need to use your power as Head of the House to find out what exactly young Malfoy has been assigned."
"Yes sir. And when the time comes…?" Asked Severus, slowly, voice cracking.
Dumbledore sighed softly and situated himself into his seat. "My time has gone, Severus. I have lived a long life; when the time comes, you shall proceed with the task. Narcissa is a very ambitious woman, one thing I admire most about her. She wants the best for her son, as she should. When the time comes, my life will perish and others shall reign." Said Albus, still toying with his beard and looking down at the raven-haired man, past his long crooked-nose. "By no means, Severus, don't blow your cover. We need Harry, you are the only one who can make sure he lives."
Pansy stared into the mist of the three adults, shaking her head softly. It was all starting to click in now. Moments later, Pansy felt a small grasp in her belly as she was plunged further into another memory. This time, it was dark, a room surrounded by old musty books, a ripped sofa, and a few bottles of what looked like potions scattered about. Pansy recognized it to be the Potions classroom, form a long time ago that was now unused. She and Draco had been there several times when skipping History of Magic.
"Severus, please… You must help him…" A blonde witch sobbed onto a the lanky man's shoulder. "My son! My husband! Oh Severus, my family… Please…"
Severus Snape starred at Narcissa Malfoy who was curled into his arms, sobbing pathetically for her family, and patted her back in a strange way, almost like he didn't know what to say or do. He sighed, "I'm trying Narcissa I am. But he won't even confine in me the least bit of information."
"Oh, why does he have to be so much like Lucius?" Asked Narcissa, chuckling softly. "Severus, he wants him… soon. Oh Severus, he's going to kill my son! My only child! And then my husband… I can't hide any longer… Bella, she's… Oh Severus, Lucius would frown upon me for crying like this!" Whaled Narcissa as she started to sob into the mans shoulder again.
"Narcissa, this is no time to worry about your husband's flattery." Snapped Snape, jerking the beautiful blonde out of his arms and giving her a stern look. "He can help you…" He whispered, whipping the salty tears form her unmarred skin.
Severus gulped. "Narcissa, Albus can help you…"
"WHAT? I would---," Lashed Narcissa, stopping halfway with a shocked expression on her face. "No… NO! Severus! Please! Tell me…" Realization had struck her. Her deep cobalt eyes filled with more tears, her bottom lip trembling, her cheeks pink. "You're his spy! Aren't you? Aren't you?" She prodded him in the hallow of his chest.
"DON'T CALL ME THAT! YOU FILTH! YOU TRAITOR!" She screamed, her voice echoing around the old room. "How could you! I trusted you! You're the reason Lucius is gone! My husband, Severus! My son! My sister! You've taken my family from me!" Sobbed Narcissa. Her legs gave out form under her and she fell into a heap on the ground, her dark silk robes spilling out around her. She curled her face into the depths of her arms, muttering her family's name over and over again.
Severus stared at her. In all his life, he had never seen her like this before: So weak and vulnerable. Narcissa was one of the few people who he let into his life as a boy, one of the few people who saw the real Severus, and now she was really seeing the real him. No longer a man in a mask, but the spy.
He kneeled down in front of her, taking his friend into his arms. "I'm sorry…" Minutes seemed to pass like hours for middle-age woman, who still bared the skin on a young girl. "He can help… he can guard you, Cissy. The order…"
"Lucius is of no use in war, is he? Stop thinking of only him!" Barked Severus, jerking her pale face up to meet his icy glare. "I'm taking Draco… With me… Narcissa, I made an oath to you, which I would have never done if Bellatrix hadn't been there. I would've told you then, but I couldn't let her know I was spying, but I still have to with hold it. Albus will protect him."
Narcissa gave a small cry and sniffled. "The Dark Lord will kill me… Severus, promise me you'll protect my son…"
"With my life," replied Severus, "And you and Lucius."
"Lucius will never except the help… But I can't live like this any longer… I can't live alone."
One last time, Pansy felt that tugging in her stomach as the memory changed. Everything… it was all starting to come together… And make sense. How could she not have already guessed this? The clues? It all made sense now.
Their were two running figures, both clad in black robes. "Faster, Draco!" The tallest of the two ordered. The blonde stopped running. "What are you doing? Come on, Draco! This is no time!"
"He'll kill me…" The blonde heaved, having ran out of breath from running and the previous events. "I won't go back…"
Severus growled, watching as a figure in the distance ran by the castle. "Draco! We have no more time to lose! You will die if you stand here."
"I can't leave… My family, my future!" Draco said, not listening to Snape at all. "My father… my mother will be killed… They'll kill Pansy… I can't leave her."
"Draco!" Severus warned, his nerves starting to rattle as cloaked figures came closer. "She'll live! Come ON!"
"NO! I WON'T GO BACK!"
"I SEE SOMEONE! OVER THERE BY THE WOODS!---,"
"---CLOSE TO THE LAKE---,"
"RUN DRACO! RUN!"
A/N: Okay. Very, very hesitant about this chapter. I have the worst case of Writers block right now, and I really don't think I like this chapter… Please tell me how you feel about it, don't worry I won't be upset if you don't like it…
Next Chapter: What happened to Draco? Where's Narcissa? How will Pansy coop with the sudden change of events?
I hope you liked! Thank you for reading!