Good evening. After my last depressing tirade, I felt it necessary to write something with sly Lucius, after all is that not what he is best at?

Nothing is mine; it is all J.K. Rowling's…

He walked towards them, across the huge lawn of his home, the fresh grass bending under his heavy boots. He could see a yellow blur in the distance, lying on the grass, a slow rising and falling occurring as it moved. As he neared the blur, it took shape in a distinctly exquisite manner. His wife was reclining, eyes closed, on a blanket. She was swathed in a huge, sunny, yellow gown that swamped her form, the laces up the front lying enticingly undone - exposing her alabaster skin to the glare of the sun. Beside her, on the red blanket his son crawled around the basking form of his mother, his blond hair glittering. He had recently turned a year and was developing at a quick pace, so much so Lucius thought he grew visibly taller every day.

"I have to go", he bent down over the blanket and patted his son's hair fleetingly.

"When will you be back?" she questioned quietly, without opening her eyes.

"I - I do not know, Narcissa," he answered, "Maybe they'll let me under house arrest."

She looked up suddenly and sat, reaching out for Draco who had wandered to her side. She settled him in her lap, hugging him in a most uncharacteristic manner - as if she was strangling him tightly, as if he were a buoy keeping her afloat. She knew her husband could not be so assertive and sure and smug about this as he would be about other things. Her husband was not afraid but he was not assured either - that he could convince the Wizengamot that he was not a Deatheater. Then again, she had known it was only a matter of time before his name was banded about and he was called to be 'questioned' by the Ministry.

However, she had not concluded on it being so soon though, only a week after the downfall of the Dark Lord. They had searched their house last night and as planned, she had sealed the door under the drawing room while he had returned from business out of town. This raid had been the indication that they were on to her husband - but the Malfoy family were above reasoning with those under them - they would simply lie; if it became necessary.

"Listen darling," he settled himself on the warm grass next to her, "I want you to stay in the Manor, just until things calm, don't interrupt me," he said sternly as he seen the protest building in her eyes, "I need you to do this for me, Narcissa."

She nodded her head and smiled strangely, "Lucius I do not want to read that you have been taken away in the paper...I couldn't stand that."

"It won't happen, I'm not being tried just now," he said firmly, "They merely want to question me. And I shall not be long in...affirming myself."

She understood his meaning, but still her emotions would not settle in a belief that he could bribe and lie his way out of this. Not that he wasn't capable, just that the atmosphere and feeling was entirely against the likes of Lucius Malfoy; a pureblood man who had never hidden his principles.

"I need to go now", he stood up and lifted Draco from her lap, "I shall see you both when I get home," his son gurgled and smiled slightly, "Yes, that's right. When I get home."

Narcissa stood and took her son from him, settling him on the huge blanket at her feet. She placed her hands on her husband's chest, and he was so much taller than her. She laid her head against him, listened to his heartbeat resounding in her ears and marvelled at the strength of it behind the hard muscular chest that she so loved to run her hands over.

"Why are you saying goodbye to me, Narcissa?" he said suddenly, grasping firmly at her wrists and pushing her a fraction away from him, eying her with a strange look of curiosity mingled with disapproval.

"What a silly thing to say Lucius," she laughed lightly but felt disconcerted and transparent. He read her very well and she was silly to think that they could hide anything from each other. They were so well matched, not just in lineage, wealth and purity but in intelligence and determination to be ahead of your game. This competition that existed between them, always to best each other and know each other better than the other had its downfalls but it somewhat served to bring them together.

"I am coming home," he said darkly, "I will not abandon you or my child. I would not let that happen, trust me."

"I imagine you really are sure of that," she said quietly, "But it is so dangerous."

"And I am so convincing," he said with an air of smugness, evidence of his ability to still think him above the power that existed within the Wizarding world. He bent, his hulking form shadowing her, wrapped her easily in his arms and bestowed an uncharacteristically soft kiss to her forehead.

She watched him go, wondering if he would be gone for days, weeks, months. She knew that he would do anything to win over those on the panel and more importantly she knew that they could be easily bought. What worried her though were these unpredictable times, when neither of them could dream of being at the top of their game. It was always about being sure you were ahead and yet she felt as if they were falling behind quite drastically.

She sat herself back down, bending over so her blonde hair dripped over her face as she smiled gently at her son. He climbed onto her lap, and presented her with a crushed flower that he had pulled messily from the grass. She took it from his tiny hand.

"Thank you, darling," she murmured, "What a clever little boy you are." He gurgled and laughed merrily, throwing himself back onto the grass as he went in search of something more to gift her, in that respect he was most definitely like his father.

"Bring me my cloak," she ordered quietly to the elf. He was gone and had returned in a moment, lugging with him a heavy, luxurious cloak of fine velvet and mink. She draped it over her nightgown and made for the door of her bedroom.

"Look after young master," she ordered, "If he wakes, call me."

She floated down the silent corridors of her home and made her way to the sunroom, out through the glass doors and onto the huge, stone porch. The night was surprisingly balmy and warm and she slowly inhaled the scent of a summer's night. She stepped onto the grass, knowing exactly where she wanted to go. This is what she had done every night, as sleep had eluded her for the last few. Her husband had not come home, though he had sent her word by owl that he was staying in London and she need not worry because he was simply dealing with 'business'. However that was of no comfort to her and she could not bear to toss and turn in that cavernous bed alone. She had wandered all the way down to the river on the estate, the place where she had basked the week before when she had last seen him. Lingering in the water calmed her down and cleared her head. She divested herself of her cloak, throwing the luxurious velvet onto the grass and dipped a toe in the water. It was not as warm as she would have liked and she wordlessly pointed her wand at the slowly moving current. It warmed immediately and she sat on the bank, lowering herself slowly into the cool water. She let it engulf her, the tingling mix of warmth and freshness curling around her. It was no substitute for her husband but it was a distraction. She swam up a little, until she came to the waterfall that she so loved to admire and raised herself up onto it, letting the water fall hard onto her face and hair, almost drowning her but never succeeding. She waded away from the waterfall and stopped at the bank, laying back in an awkward fashion so she could rest against the grassy side.

"Midnight dip, Lady Malfoy?"

The sudden voice startled her causing her to lose her footing on the rock under foot and slip, so she was entirely engulfed by the slowly moving water. She surfaced again, and turned to her husband who was smiling, a ting of amusement in his eyes.

"You startled me, Lucius," she said quickly, trying to hide her somewhat strange embarrassment.

"I apologise, dear," he smiled, already divesting himself of his boots and trousers, "Mind if I join you? I hope to make the water warmer for you."

"He returns victorious," she said slyly, knowingly noting the change and return to his sneering and cocky manner.

"And wanting to celebrate," he smiled, removing the last of his garments so he stood before her, displaying his astounding body to her. She shivered at the sight and offered her hand, standing up to him. He leered voyeuristically at her, noting how her night garment had become transparent in the water, and how she was deliciously aware of it. He moved forward and stepped into the water, taking her offered hand.

"You're free?" she asked, settling herself with her legs around his waist and her arms around his neck. He welcomed her and settled against the river bank, placing his hands on her rear.

"In a manner of speaking," he answered slowly, studying her face intently, "I'm not going to Azkaban, if that is what you are asking."

She smiled, almost feral and crashed her lips to his. Demanding he return the kiss. After a moment, she pulled away and began enjoying his warm breath against the frozen skin of her chest as he took over.

"Tell me how you did it?" she breathed, arching into him as he divested more attention on her neck and she ground herself hard into his groin. She elicited a moan that made her shiver, knowing she could achieve that with a mere movement.

"I bought them, sold them, threatened them," he answered, stopping for a moment to indulge her with a brief account of what he'd done, "I threatened Fudge, Crouch, Falke and Eisenstein. Bought Umbridge, Faber, Blameny and Garber and sold O'Gaveron and Draver. I didn't go near Bones or Dumbledore."

"Tell me, what you said. Every last little thing..."

"Not right now", he answered, positioning himself so he could get her nearer and have his way, sliding his hand possessively over her soaked body.

"Yes, right now!" she demanded, biting into the vein in his neck that always throbbed when he was making love to her. He let out a low hiss, and thrust into her with one violent move that sent a painful ecstasy through her, joining their bodies in a violent, yet oddly tender movement.

"It seems you have no choice, darling," he smiled smugly, moving just enough to make her writhe "I get to be in control tonight."

He draped her cape over her bare shoulders and draped his shirt over his own body, with a flick of his wand he sent their remaining clothes to their bedroom and with one quick swoop, lifted her into his arms with easy agility. She curled her legs over his strong biceps, wrapping herself round his neck just as she felt the tight oppression of apparition suck both of them into a momentary blackness and then arrive in their chamber, where already a fire was crackling in the huge hearth.

"Will you regale me now?" she questioned, running a hand over his damp hair as he settled her on the plush carpet, "Now you have had your way."

"I have indeed, now you should have yours."

He clicked his fingers and out of nowhere, two glasses of champagne and a bowl of iced strawberries appeared and landed on the table beside Lucius' chair. He sat himself down and she went over to her dresser, divesting herself of her cloak and taking a fresh nightgown from her drawer - slipped into it. She sauntered over to him, watching him sip the champagne with delight, enjoying the look of distinct satisfaction on his face.

"Sit here," he ordered quietly, patting his knee to emphasise his point.

She settled herself comfortably, curling herself up on him. He offered her a glass of the champagne and clinked his own against hers, "To the success of the Malfoy's, may we always worm our way out..."

She laughed gently and he read in it that well hidden but distinct cruelty and smugness that made him want to ravish her again and again.

"So tell me," she demanded again, "Tell me what you said to each one in detail. Tell me how you done it, Lucius! I want to know every last sly, conniving, dirty detail."

"Well," he laughed, almost as if he were shy to brag, "Fudge would not want anyone to know, especially that charming wife of his that he was cavorting with his rather sluttish secretary. It might damage his future chances of being Minister and I merely reminded him of that. The man is easily bought. Crouch had a deal with my father, no matter how straight he paints himself he owes the Malfoy's a favour and that would not be good for the papers to know either. Falke, well we know where his allegiance truly lies, interesting he was willing to convict those he supported so well, financially. Eisenstein was harder, of course. It took me until yesterday to convince him that admitting he had embezzled the Ministry would not be a good career move," he smiled maliciously and she shifted with delight, "I enjoyed convincing him very much...And Umbridge, well I sent her a delightful gift of diamonds and a rare plate I managed to pick up in a muggle flee market, "he shivered with distaste at that, "Hand painted, with a cat on it none the less. Faber and Blameny both have huge gambling debt, coincidentally and they needed more Galleons to subdue their loan sharks, they wandered too far down Knockturn alley and are quickly regretting it, given they ran into the proper types who will scalp them if they do not pay back, I merely gifted them enough money to pay off their sins."

"And you wouldn't scalp them?" she questioned slyly.

"No, I would do worse," he answered slowly, seriously, "Garber just wanted the money, said he didn't think I was a Deatheater anyway, seen no point in not taking it and I wasn't too worried in adverting 10,000 Galleons in a sound lie, ha! He'd sell himself for anything. Finally, darling I spread some rather vicious roomers about O'Gaveron and Draver. Now, as well as the Wizengamot trying the biggest Deatheaters, they are internally investigating their colleague's files. What can I say, have I impressed you? Now, you see my plea of being under the Imperius is so much more believable..."

She beamed at him, extremely impressed and aroused by his enjoyment when he screwed people over, quite thoroughly, and how he recounted each glorious detail with glee to her.

"So that, my darling," he smiled, sipping gloatingly on the champagne," Is the way of my success and now, I will have 10 innocents and merely 2 who will find me guilty. I ask you, is that not a success?"

"Oh, it is!" she laughed, flinging back her head, "My darling Lucius, I am so proud!"

"And relieved?" he questioned insightfully, changing the mood abruptly as he rubbed a gentle hand across her thigh.

"Hugely," she whispered, running a soft hand down his face, "I do not care how wicked anyone thinks you are, you're mine and I need you. The thought of going on without you..."

"Stop," he ordered, as he lifted his hand to her lips and kissed her fingers. She knew he meant it and did not push the matter, because he was not the type to discuss deep emotion. A look sufficed for him and that suited her too, so he was not prepared to allow her to push him.

"Let's go to bed," she smiled and he obliged, lifting her up as he stood to move. He laid her down and pulled the covers over her slight form. He walked round the bed and laid himself down, relaxing for the first time in a week.

"Why did they let you home?" she questioned, staring into the fire.

"They had no choice", he whispered turning to stare at her beck, "They had no evidence, they had searched here and found nothing and they can't do anything to me. I'm untouchable, Narcissa and sadly, they had not realised that and they know I'd never leave the country - because that just screams guilt. I fed them what they wanted, we are all tempted by the bad in us - some just put it to better use"

"Do you feel guilty?" she said, quite uncharacteristically.

"No!" he snorted, "I am a political animal. The only people in the world I wouldn't use are you and my son, I'm the power behind the Ministry and they know that. It's better to infect the inside, Narcissa, for eventually you will infect every last branch and then you walk into power."

He smiled against her skin, "No one can touch me, apart from you."

As she lay there, her body wrapped around his she knew he had infected her, he had evoked a power in her that she couldn't live without.

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