Chapter 6: Working Things Out

Cassie stood proudly on the platform with Derek in between her and Julie, submitting reluctantly to the hugs and kisses her mother bestowed generously. Not even Derek escaped. Draco had hugged and kissed each of his daughters good-bye and now placed a hand on Derek's shoulder. "Our home is your home for as long as you need it," he repeated sternly. "If you need help, do not hesitate to call me or Mrs. Malfoy." He handed the boy a silver lighter similar to Cassie and Julie's. "I'd wager you know how this works. Good luck with your exams, andall of you, behave." The second Ginny was turned around, he mouthed, "And don't forget to send me a Hogwarts toilet seat." All three of the preteens stifled their giggles, and boarded the train.

Halfway through the ride, Cassie found the Slytherin Quidditch Team leaning on the Gryffindor one, and immediately intervened. "The others are fair game, but Derek is under the protection of the Malfoy name from now on."

Two weeks later, Uncle Harry appeared in Defense Against the Dark Arts and asked for Derek. Unaware of the situation, Professor Saber allowed him to withdraw Derek despite Cassie's instinctive protest. She ignored the sputtering professor with now pink hair and ran after them, pausing only long enough to sound their secret knock on the Transfiguration classrooms door to get Julie's attention. They found Uncle Harry and Derek in the next corridor. Derek looked like he was about to cry and Cassie reached for her silver lighter, but Derek beat her to it and turned away from Harry after activating it. He saw Cassie and Julie and tried to give a cocky grin, but didn't quite manage it.

Cassie walked over and hugged him. "Come on. Mum and Dad will be here soon. Let's go meet them in Dumbledore's office, okay?"

Uncle Harry looked down at them and nodded. "This wasn't such a good idea after all. Let's see if your parents can help us straighten this out."

They all ended up in Dumbledore's office, where Draco and Ginny fussed appropriately over Derek and Dumbledore assured Cassie that there would be no detention for Professor Saber's hair color, providing the antidote showed up before dinner.

They were sent out so that the adults could work out a plan to help settle things permanently, but Cassie hung back long enough to hear Uncle Harry say that it had been a one time thing with Parvati because he thought that she had died in the last battle the very next day and was shocked to find out that it wasn't true.

Her mum sounded shocked when she mumbled something about "Supposed to be asleep that night."

Uncle Harry sounded clueless when he said. "Whoever said I was sleeping?"

Chapter 7: One Final Moment

Cassie ducked a bludger and slipped up behind Derek with a smirk. A second later he realized that she was there and spun wildly. With a wicked smirk, she blew him a kiss as she dove after the snitch. He was on her tail in a second. This was the biggest competition between them, and though they had reached a friendly understanding, neither of them would give in. Draco had finally made it to one of Cassie's games and was cheering wildly for her and once in a while, he remembered to cheer for Derek too, but Cassie refused to lose the only game her father could come to. Uncle Harry sat in the stands too, watching Derek. After a few weeks of careful contact, Derek finally sat down with his father and they talked the last few years out. Their relationship would never be the way Derek had bragged so longingly about in the beginning of the year, but they were talking. The current arrangement for the summer was that Derek would stay with the Malfoys during the week, and return to the Potter house on weekends until he felt comfortable staying with Harry all the time. While he now understood that he was not and could never be his father, he still wanted to win the quidditch match to make the man proud. Derek and Ginny had also had a long talk about being unable to buy, earn, or win love, along with what was healthy competition.

Right now, Cassie and Derek were neck and neck, ten feet from the snitch. They reached out. Cassie's left hand closed around a wing at the same time that Derek's right hand caught the other wing. There was not even a second between their catches. The stands erupted in a frenzy of cheers as the two first years stared at the ball and at each other. Slytherin was forty points ahead, but they had both caught the snitch. Identical smirks lit up their faces, and they spun simultaneously into a dive, never releasing the snitch.

Upon landing, they were surrounded by their teams, both celebrating the two-way catch of the snitch, the first in Hogwarts history. Both ended up riding on their captains' shoulders up to the top box, where Dumbledore gravely awarded Slytherin the Quidditch Cup and announced that Cassandra Starr Malfoy and Derek Andrei Potter would both be added to Hogwarts, A History for their feat, and a party would be held in the Great Hall during dinner.

"Bye, Rune! Have a good summer! I'll see you in September!" Cassie laughed and spun around to face Derek. "This year went by so fast, I can't believe that we're Second Years now!" She squealed in her excitement and hugged him impetuously, before standing back and studying him closely. "Do you have your Defense Against the Dark Arts homework to work on?" she asked in perfect imitation of her mum.

"Yeah," Derek murmured in response. "Mr. Pot-Harry said that he'd help me with it if I need it. He was really good in that class when he was at Hogwarts, but I'll wait to work on potions with you and Julie so Snape can't fail me." He hefted the dark blue backpack that held his Defense Against the Dark Arts Textbook, some parchment, his quills, and Exploding Snap pack, along with two of the latest Marvin the Mad Muggle comics which Cassie had smuggled in there. His clothes for the weekend were tossed into a matching duffle bag at his feet, so the Malfoys could take his trunk home with them and the twins would unpack it for him. After a moment of holding everything he was feeling inside he hugged her again, and whispered, "I'm kind of nervous." Cassie didn't blame him. After what had happened during the last break, he probably didn't want to go back to his dad's for a very long time. He looked like the slightest problem would cause him to cry, so Cassie kissed his cheek lightly and wrapped his fingers tightly around his lighter, which she had removed from his front pocket.

"If you need us, use this. If the weekend thing doesn't work out, then you come home, and we'll come up with something else." She smirked and squeezed his other hand tightly. "And I mean it, Derek Andrei Potter. It's the weekend and he's supposed to spend it with you. He promised. If the only person you see is Dobby, then I'm going to come get you myself."

"Okay," he laughed softly, feeling much better after her orders. "See you Monday."

"See you Monday. Have a good weekend. Bye Derek!" Cassie watched him follow Uncle Harry and turned back to Julie. "What a year, huh, Jules? My sister becomes my enemy and back again, while my enemy becomes one of my best friends and practically my brother. Not to mention the fact that I kissed Rune Andrews on the train ride home." Cassie watched her sister's mouth drop.

"You did what!"

"I kissed Rune Andrews on the train ride home and then Derek threatened to kill him if he broke my heart."

Her twin started to bounce up and down like a Mexican jumping bean. "I want to hear every single detail, absolutely everything, Cassandra Starr, so spill immediately!"

"You'll have to catch me first," Cassie teased, taking off in the direction of her parents. "Good luck, sister dear."

"You are so dead, when I get a hold of you, Cassie Starr!"

The End.

A/N: That's the last of the trilogy. Hope you liked it. As always, R&R. It keeps me sane and inspires me. With love, The Original Dark Angel