Hey guys! I revised this chapter, because I was not very happy with the writing.. hope you don't mind! So yeah, I have not forgotten this story (or "The day hell froze over"), I've just been super busy with graduation and getting into uni and all. I kinda know where this story is headed now, though, and even have a couple of scenes already in my mind, so... I WILL finish this story :) Chapter four is almost ready, I hope to upload it in a couple of days :)
Thank you for staying with me :)
Ginny was awakened by the screeching sound of a loud scream. Rubbing her eyes, she propped herself up on her elbows, trying to make sense of the commotion. "Wake up you little tramps! Did you think you were on a holiday trip? Get up and stand before your beds!" It was the hawk-like woman. She was apparently some kind of supervisor and was now going around in circles in the centre of the filthy servant's room, her hands folded behind her back, wand in hand. Ginny doubted that she would restrain from physical or psychological coercion.
Swiftly, Ginny climbed out of her uncomfortable bunk bed, put on her working clothes, and stood as ordered before the bed. The girl in the bed over her came to stand beside her, with lifeless eyes cast downward. The Hawk spoke up:
"Now. I want the gardening servants to trim the grass and plant the new roses. There is a new batch of lilies that has to be planted, too. Don't forget that there is a ball coming up in a month and that the gardens have to be perfect. Maria is in charge. Go. Cleaning servants, this half of you", she gestured towards the servants a little further from Ginny. "will clean the usual rooms, if they are not spotless you know what will happen to you, and the other half", which included Ginny, "will proceed with the East Wing. Bessy, make sure they all get their jobs done properly. Go. Cooking servants, you…", Ginny did not wait to listen to her austere voice and followed the other servants out of the dark room.
Everything would have been still and tranquil, even though there were about fifteen pairs of feet gliding over the marble floors, hadn't it been for Ginny's rather loud pair of feet. She was having trouble mimicking the half gliding, half tiptoeing technique of the other servants, which enabled them to move soundlessly. Bessy gave out instructions upon reaching the East Wing; the larger part of the group was assigned to clean the abandoned rooms and the rest, including Ginny, were to maintain the rooms that had been cleaned in the previous days. To Ginny, it seemed rather ironic that Bessy was their section supervisor; she was probably the least authoritarian and yet it was she whom they obeyed. All of them were such empty shells, as if their soul has already been sucked out by a Dementor's Kiss, leaving a body carrying nothing but itself.
The room Ginny was assigned to clean first was a kind of sitting room with a beautiful view of the gardens. She sighed as she admired the scenery. It would have been much nicer to work in the gardens, she thought. It's not this dark and stuffy there.
"Y-You're supposed t-t-to work. If I-I-I see you n-not working again, I w-w-will report y-you." It was Bessy. Her stutter and meek voice were easily recognizable. Ginny simply nodded and turned to the coffee table, which was covered in a thin layer of dust.
The following days were all very similar; Ginny was in a kind of routine. Wake up, Work, Eat, Sleep. She was chary about talking to the other servants; the Hawk was watching them all the time. One servant girl was caught talking and Ginny had not seen her since.
One day, Ginny caught her reflection in a mirror she was cleaning and she was mildly surprised to see dull, lifeless eyes stare back at her. She had become one of them.
"As you little whores probably already know, there will be a ball held by our mistress in three weeks. The Manor has to be spotless, and if anybody finds even a tiny speck of dirt you will all be treated with the cruciatus. All of you. I need the cleaning and gardening servants to work triple hard, because some of you will now be part of our decorating group." The Hawk was standing before them, examining them like soldiers to be picked out for the front. She pointed at several girls to step forward, including Ginny. It was like waking from a deep sleep, from a reverie. "You will be in the decorating group. Stay here. The rest of you go and proceed with your usual tasks." The other servants walked out of the room, leaving Ginny and about five others with the Hawk.
"Come with me" was her command. They followed her into the entrance hall of the Manor, which Ginny remembered from her arrival. It was even more beautiful during the day, and Ginny noticed a mass of flowers in its centre. They were the most beautiful flowers she had ever seen, some of them so exotic that they eclipsed the others around them. The sight of the flowers elated Ginny, they reminded her of her home, and her family. The Hawk started giving orders and Ginny only listened halfheartedly, she only fully listened when she was mentioned. "Redhead, go and get those red roses. They have to be arranged in a wreath or little bouquets and be placed according to this plan. Don't forget the bows!"
Ginny was so focused on her work that she did not notice a young man descend from the marble staircase. It was the voice, which sent her out of her trance-like state.
"Carmen, what the hell is this?"
Ginny looked up, startled. There was Draco Malfoy, standing in midst those flowers, and he was definitely not very happy.
"You know that I'm allergic to these and yet you let them into this house." He spoke very calculated. It was his calmness that scared Ginny. She remembered her last encounter with him and quickly crouched behind an armchair.
"Master Malfoy, your mother ordered these. She orders, I obey. You'll have to talk to her." said the Hawk, Carmen, with surprisingly little fear. Ginny had to repress a chuckle, a name like this did not fit the woman at all.
"Listen, I don't care what my mother said, she probably just forgot! I. Want. These. Out. Now." Malfoy's voice was so menacing that Ginny did not even dare to peek and see Carmen's reaction for herself. However, she did hear a bang and several squeaks from the other servants. Curious to see what had happened, Ginny dared to look and saw that Carmen must have gotten rid of the flowers magically, for there was a pile of ash in between the other flowers. Malfoy just looked superciliously at all of them and left, going through a door to the right.
That was close, was all Ginny could think.