Disclaimer: Harry Potter belongs to J. K. Rowling, and the rest to Miranda Flairgold. I'm merely borrowing their characters and universe to play a bit.
Warnings: None. A bit of PG-13-Trauma, perhaps one or two bad words, but otherwise nothing.
Summary: Tortured by the Dark Lord, escaped only to be enslaved by a vampire, and terrified out of his wits - What is Draco's perspective on the two weeks he spends in Rahkesh's home?
A/N: You should read A Second Chance at Life and at least the beginning chapters of Changes in a Time of War (both by Miranda Flairgold) first to make sense of what this story is talking about. If you can't find them or don't already know them, I have posted the links on my profile. And, yes, I have asked for her permission. Otherwise – enjoy!
„Come here, Draco."
Without protest, he got up from his seat on the floor and went to stand in front of her, scared to his bones. It seemed that lately, he hadn't been anything but terrified, caught in a never-ending nightmare of vampiric captivity. He never once raised his eyes, having been taught by other slaves that it would be considered a challenge to look directly into a vampire's eyes. And he didn't want any attention, he just wanted to be left alone, get away and out of this hellish life.
A cold, inhumanly strong hand settled on his shoulder, making him suppress a flinch at the thought of what was coming next. All slaves were regularly fed on, and although he had to admit that her bite had never hurt, he was still scared to death that she could kill him with one thoughtless move. He couldn't even defend himself, having lost his wand somewhere during his captivity with the Dark Lord's minions. Gritting his teeth lest they chattered from tremors of terror, he waited for her next move, inwardly cringing away as far as possible.
But the expected bite never came; instead, she raised his chin with two fingers. Involuntarily, his gaze went to her eyes that were frowning at him, and he immediately dropped them as far down to the floor as he could. During Defense against the Dark Arts classes at Hogwarts, they had covered vampires, and though those lessons seemed infinitely far away now he thought he could remember a book saying that vampires could enslave mortals with a single gaze. Those vampires with the Dark Lord hadn't been able to do it, but she felt so much older and stronger than them; he didn't want to risk her manipulating his thoughts like she had done with so many of her other slaves before. Why else would they be happy to be in her service?
Admittedly, she had rescued him from the Dark Lord's tortures. But then, she had turned around and enslaved him, merely exchanging one kind of hell for another.
"I am not going to feed from you tonight, Draco. I would rather like to know how you have been settling in. I have been receiving reports that you do not sleep well, and I know that you haven't been this meek in the past. Has anyone been hurting you under my care?"
Jerkily, he shook his head, not trusting his voice to stay steady. No, not even being fed on hurt; he hadn't known that the experience could be quite so pleasurable. The Dark Lord's vampires' bites had hurt so much, sending him screaming and struggling when they grabbed him with their hands of steel. But in his eyes, the lack of pain turned the horror into a much more subtle version. Everybody around him had been nice and understanding, trying to make him as comfortable as possible, and they didn't even see how far they had fallen under the vampire's spell. He wondered when she would start showing her real face. At least the Dark Lord had never hidden his intention to torture him to death.
"Then why are you still so afraid? As long as you follow my directions, I will never treat you badly or let any harm come to you. The same cannot be said of other vampires."
But you are a vampire, too, he wanted to scream, starting to tremble visibly. Her hand on his shoulder tightened almost to the point of pain when he didn't say anything, making him think furiously on what he could tell her. He grew more and more frantic when he couldn't find anything that wouldn't infuriate her, but the longer he stayed silent, the angrier she would become, too. He was nearing a full-blown panic, opening and closing his mouth without sound, shrinking away from her as far as her touch allowed.
She sighed, easing her grip on his shoulder without releasing him.
"You don't have to answer if it causes you that much distress. But keep in mind that even my patience with unreasonable fears has a limit. I have seen what you have gone through at the hands of vampires, and yes, it is understandable that you are traumatized. But there comes a point where you will have to decide how to proceed with your life. Do you want to keep living in fear? Because then, it would be a mercy if I killed you."
His panic, which had eased with her first words, was making a serious comeback, freezing him in terror, eyes dancing nervously back and forth as he was looking for words. She was going to kill him?
"Relax, I never said anything about killing you right now."
He felt something dark wash over him, plunging him into an unnatural calmness. She could not only read his thoughts but also influence his mind, he numbly decided. Then had she heard his earlier thoughts, too? But somehow, nothing seemed important anymore at the moment, being shrouded behind hazy clouds. Everything had lost meaning, even his fears.
Finally following the soft pressure of her fingers under his chin, he raised his eyes to hers. She stared at him intently without saying anything for a while, and not even her unnatural stillness combined with her soul-deep scrutiny of him could make him panic. After an indeterminable amount of time, she released him and stepped away from him, nodding to herself.
"I might know somebody who can set you back on the right track. He certainly is interesting for a mortal. And he owes me quite a large favor."
It took some time to penetrate his drugged mind that she was not really talking to him, more thinking out loud. With reality separated from him through layers of cotton, he kept still, waiting in a timeless void for further instructions.
At long last, she dismissed him with the order to return to her quarters immediately after breakfast tomorrow, dressed for a trip outside her mansion. Bowing quietly, he left the room, still wrapped in a rapidly clearing haze of calmness. Back in his quarters, when the last of her compulsion vanished, he belatedly broke out in cold sweat, reliving the horror of being completely ensnared by her mind. It took more than an hour for his tremors to stop, and then only because he had fallen asleep. His nightmares rose with a vengeance.
This story is already mostly complete, so the wait between chapters won't be too long. But if you find some serious plot-holes, logical mistakes, or other things like that, please don't hesitate to tell me – I'm posting the chapters with a time-delay because of this, so that I can fix those things. And once again many kudos to Miranda Flairgold for allowing me to play in her awesome sandbox (erh, universe, reality, whatever…)