A/n- Feels like its been forever, doesn't it?

Disclaimer: Are we going to have to do this again? Geez, I love usuing question marks!

Summary: See below…

Important: For the newbies, this is the sequel to Jackknifed and will not make since unless you go and read it. It doesn't take that long because the chapters are short! Don't worry, apparently people say its a good fic- who'da thought?

Edit: Actually, if your a newbie and don't WANT to go read my 500+ reviewed story, just read the following sentence and it'll bring ya up to speed... hopefully:

A quick summary of Jackknifed:

After a chance encounter and many chapters of first hating each other, then tolerating each other, soon loving eachother, Draco Malfoy and Hermione Granger have revealed their relationship-albiet inadvertantly- to the Hogwarts community. Harry, although at first reluctant, accepts this 'betrayal' (as Ron would call it) and although Ronald doesn't trust Malfoy and makes a fit about the relationship at first, he has become a somewhat silent protestor.

Now for heaven sakes, go read Jackknifed, for that did NOT do it justice. (or...continue... you know... we're laid back..)

For those returning, (I love you guys, by the way) welcome back! I promise this sequel won't disappoint. It will have 19 chapters, mostly focused on Draco. Although a lot are vying for a 'post-Hogwarts/adult/marriage' fic, it probably won't happen. I'm not too fond of adult fics. However, this story will transcend Hogwarts and overflow into a 'still 7th year but kind of post-Hogwarts still teenagers' kinda thing. Don't worry, this WILL make since.

Oh, did I mention this is HBP compatible? Just a few details will be changed.

The real chapter summary: A look into the first few days and weeks of Draco's summer.

The Other Side of Fate

Malfoy hadn't slept.

Well, he had slept, but not enough to constitute a real period of rest- not since he had arrived home the weekend previous.

Perhaps by August he would be able to close his eyes without every single creak jolting him out of bed. Perhaps by August his mother would stop sulking and his maids would stop staring. Perhaps by August he could begin counting down the days until he could get back on that damn Hogwarts train.

But it wasn't August, not yet, and none of those things were happening.

"Mr. Malfoy! Mr. Malfoy, are you awake?" A curt little voice, old and one the verge of wheezing, called though the door at him.

"Been awake all night." Draco whispered, closing his eyes, rolling back over to tuck himself more fully into his velvety sheets.

"What was that, Mr. Malfoy?"

"Nothing, nothing, I'm up… Merlin, that woman…" Draco pushed himself up and swung his bare legs over the side of the bed, shrugging on a white shirt which had been laying on the ground at his feet.

Noting how particularly wrinkled the shirt was, the boy proceeded to strip it off again and throw it against his headboard. Instead, he walked over to the back of his bedroom door and pulled a black robe off a wooden peg nailed there. Pulling it on, he opened the door.

The small bent woman who had been waiting for him pushed past with feather-duster and rag in hand. Immediately she bustled to the window, pulled back the gauzy drapes, unlatched the large clasp in the center, and threw open the pains.

Sunlight cascaded in to throw itself over the rug covered stone, washing up upon the walls, the four-poster bed, cabinets, and desk.

Draco mused that the only real color apart from the sun were the woman's old yellow rubber gloves.

She was a muggle and the oldest of the Malfoy maids, a part of the furniture from before Draco had been born. It had been a top priority for his father to 'acquire' an all muggle staff. Not only did it further ingrain within the megalomaniac that he was superior, but it allowed for Deatheater activity without the threat of a magical uprising from the help.

Now, as Draco watched the woman- nameless to him- pick his shirt off the headboard, he felt as if he would be sick.

Hurriedly, he rushed out of the room and down the hall, his feet echoing off the walls of the castle-like manor.

The hall ran long ways down the back side of the mansion, branching out into smaller corridors that spiraled up towards the sky or down into the earth. Opposite the double front doors a split staircase joined the middle of the hall to the first level. Draco reached the stairs and walked down the left side towards the smell of cooking bacon.

"Do you insist on wearing nothing round the house other then your shorts and robe?" Airily, his mother waved at him to sit at the long dinning room table, breakfast already splayed in a wide circle around the head chair, which, was still empty.

Draco took a seat across from his mother.

"Get off it." He huffed, pulling back his blond hair out of his eyes. His mother looked him over, particularly at his shinning head.

"You need a trim."

Just had one. Draco thought, a smirk on his face.

One of the butlers walked over with the milk and as the tray was set down, a little black band was placed in front of Draco. He pulled his bangs back into a tight tail against his head, something he would never be caught doing anywhere except his home.

It had surprised Draco, for the first few days he had been home, how his mother had simply absorbed the shocking disgrace of her sons' rumored betrayal; obviously owled by Snape, Zabini, Parkinson, or all three. Probably multiple times.

She hadn't said a word to him but looked at all times as if she would, at any second, burst out into tears or attempt to jinx, hex, or curse him.

Neither happened.

Every morning now, it was the same: Draco would awake, feeling insanely tired, pull himself out of bed and downstairs, his mother would make some remark about the way he looked- or felt- and attempted a casual conversation while all the while fishing for some tidbits of information.

Always the same.

At first, she had been quite inquisitive about the whereabouts of his class and family ring.

Draco had told her he had lost it.

"Draco, dear, why don't you tell me how your summer homework is going?" Her lips pursed in what was an attempt at a motherly smile, only to reflect as if she had licked a bit of lemon.

Draco poured copious amounts of creamy milk from a pitcher onto his dry cereal while flicking his finger at a few links of sausage, the food flying onto is plate.

"It's done." He said simplythrough a mouthful of food.

His mothers' blue eyes cast to slits.

"Don't lie." She hissed dangerously.

Draco raised his eyebrows in self defense. "I'm not! I finished it last week."

"You've only been home a week… dear."

Malfoy shrugged.

"Your father wishes he could talk to you…"

At this Draco froze, his spoon halfway to his lips

"…I have been told…" His mother continued. "That the Dark Lord wishes to impose upon you a quest this year, however, he and your father are questioning your loyalties. Your father believes that if you partake in what the Dark Lord wishes, you will be considered back into his good graces and your mistakes will be forgiven. Your father…"

Did she known how much this caught him off guard, her spilling this out a breakfast? He was hardly awake! Perhaps that was her intention.

"Father's in Azkaban."

"He has ways of finding out about your little… escapades."

Draco let his spoon fall, his chair screeching backwards a pace. He pointed a finger at his mother, the usual Malfoy tempter within him rising.

"You have no right to talk to me about my father. You shouldn't even been communicating with him, nor with the Deatheaters, nor with the Dark Lord. You are a Malfoy widow, act like one, for your husband and my father no longer exists."

"How dare you." His mothers' nostrils flared.

"This is my house now, mother, it has been since father left his estate to me when he was incarcerated. I can dare if I want to." Draco stood up and picked a piece of toast off the table, his appetite and good mood spoiled.

He had been feeling so lighthearted lately, as if the incident on the train was the final casting off of the black cloud over him. Summer was, in Hermiones' opinion, an opportunity for Draco to take stock in his life.

Malfoy had expressed his distress in the way his life was going, Hermione had challenged him to make good on his word and change it.

It had all been going well until this new bit of news.

A quest.

This did not, by any means, bode well.

"Mr. Malfoy?"

Draco turned and was drawn out of this thoughts, his mother now staring silently at her plate, by a servant.

"Yes?" He asked as casually has he could with his blood still boiling.

"You have an owl, sir."

"Owl…oh! Oh, good, yes, let me get that." Draco followed the tall man past the swinging kitchen door, past the floured cutting boards where bread was rising, and onto the back porch.

The man bowed back into the house and Draco approached the snowy white owl.

"Its Potter's ruddy bird." He whispered, yet, his eyes grew alight as he saw a roll of parchment attached to the bird's foot.

Tiny little blue ribbon was tied round it.

A/n- Ah! And so it begins! Watch out for chapter one!