The couch seemed to be sucking him into it, and Draco fought with all his good breeding to sit still and not betray his discomfort. He glanced around with unease at the neutral taupes and beiges of the office he was in, vaguely noting the grandmother clock hanging on the wall, it's ticks marking the seconds that he was spending money on.
Before he was left to sit in anxiety any longer, the door opened and a tall and lanky man strode in, sporting a bad comb over and a pair of incredibly thick glasses. His unassuming brown robes made him seem as if he was nothing more than an accent of his plain office. He looked over to the young man on his couch and gave a hearty smile, before glancing at the clipboard he held clutched in one hand.
Draco stood up to shake the man's hand who introduced himself as Dr Mackay, curtly returned the Dr's jovial greeting, and then sat back down on the couch. The older man sat in a chair opposite him and crossed his legs. He briefly flipped through a couple of papers on his clipboard which no doubt held little innocuous details about his newest patient. 19 years old, attending Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry to redo his final year, ex-Death Eater, son of convict Lucius Malfoy. He let the clip board rest comfortably against his leg before leaning forward intently.
"What would you like to talk about, Mr Malfoy?" he asked, plain brown eyes unwavering from grey ones.
"I thought you were supposed to talk to me," Draco accused. "You're the therapist. Let me know what my problems are and then tell me how to fix them."
Dr Mackay peered over the edge of his glasses. "Is that what you really think happens here?"
Draco lifted his nose in the air a fraction. "It is what I was lead to believe," he sneered.
"Well then, if you do not wish to talk about anything, would you like to hear what I think?" When there was no response he continued, "I think that you're trying to avoid the subject that's weighing on you enough you had to lower yourself to come and take therapy. I think you're hiding behind a front of impeccable manners," he gestured towards Draco's ramrod straight posture, "and using a veneer of snobbery to make it seem as if there truly is no reason for you to be here."
Draco did not reply, asides from raising his nose another fraction in the air.
"So tell me, Mr Malfoy, why are you here?"
The ticking of the grandmother clock was the only noise in the room, as the question was taken into extreme consideration.
Why was he here?
Because his father is rotting in Azkaban.
Because he watched his school mates be tortured.
Because he had been assigned to be a murderer, because he had witnessed death.
Because his friend had died foolishly.
The condescending sneer fell from his face, and he faced the therapist very seriously. "Because I can't sleep at night."
Dr Mackay leaned back in seeming satisfaction. "That seems as good a reason as any. Tell me, why can't you sleep."
Draco felt his courage that had helped him deluge such information failing him. His eyes broke away from the dull, flat ones of the man in front of him.
"It's the war, isn't it?"
Draco snorted. "Of course it's the war, you bloody imbecile. I can't close my eyes at night with out seeing Professor Burbage spinning above my head. I hear Granger's pathetic screams about how she didn't know anything. I still feel the heat of fiend fyre, and still smell the burning of that God forsaken room. You made such a brilliant guess thinking that it was the war."
"What about these keeps you up, then? It's over with. There's nothing to do now."
His heart was pounding, and he knew that someone had to finally know. "Because I was a coward!" he exclaimed in bitter frustration. "All those, and every single time, I was there! I could have done something for once. Like Potter, and his stupid friends."
"You would have been killed."
"You think I don't know that? I thought about it every day, you bloody quack."
"The fact remains," began Dr Mackay, "that there is nothing for it now. Go on and live your life, be happy."
Draco glared at him. "Is this a fucking joke?" he demanded.
The doctor shrugged. "Not at all. Unless you have something you want to do about it."
The clock in the background steadily ticked away.
"What can I do?" he asked quietly.
"First, you need to come to terms that the past is in the past. You may regret your decisions, but however much you hate yourself for them, they've already been made. Second, you need to think about the present."
"The present? Presently I feel like I'm being taken for a ride by a charlatan."
"Perhaps, but, honestly, what do you have to lose?"
Draco crossed his arms with a huff. "What about the present, then?"
"You caused suffering in the past. Make your present, and future, about causing happiness. You'll never make up to people what you did, because actions cannot be reversed. You can, however, try and lighten their future."
Draco narrowed his eyes. "You want me to become a perpetually happy and helping dolt."
"No, that is what you perceive people who like to bestow happiness as. It may be a cliché, but it really is better to give than it is to receive, Mr Malfoy. Think about who you can help. War reparations, if you will."
How could he help people who didn't want him around? How could he help people he, despite everything, still couldn't stand?
Starting at the beginning of his short lived Death Eater career, he supposed he should try and make it up to Severus. He had been to hard headed to accept help, and because of it his Godfather had been forced to murder his own mentor.
Draco shivered as the memory of the night on the Astronomy Tower flashed through his mind, and he saw the loathing on Severus' face. That at the time he had thought to have been directed both at him, for his inability to complete his task, and at the headmaster. It sickened him to think a man could hate himself that much.
Knowing now, that Severus, having been rescued from death by Nagini's fangs by Potter's pet ginger, still lived with that hate inside himself, made Draco's stomach clench. That it was his fault his godfather regularly got trashed and broke into the Headmaster's office to yell at Dumbledore's portrait. Not that Draco was supposed to know that, but he had been over on a such a night, sharing drinks with Severus until he had drunkenly stumbled his way towards the gargoyle in front of the headmaster's office.
Still friends after class hours, more compatriots in consistently finding the bottoms of bottles, Draco decided that Severus would be the easiest person to make amends with.
All he had to do was find a way to make his life a little bit easier.
He stood up, and the doctor quickly followed suit. Reaching forward Draco shook his hand. "I won't thank you until I see it does something in my life."
Dr Mackay smiled patiently. "I hope you check in a few times, let me know if anything is working, what you've been doing."
Draco nodded in agreement, thinking he would probably never be back in this office again if he could help it. Unless it was to demand a refund.
He exited the office and made his way downstairs to the apparation points in the lobby. Turning in a circle and disapparating with a loud crack, he returned to the outskirts of Hogsmeade. Pulling his coat tighter around himself to shield from the cool Scotland autumn, Draco began his trek back up to the school, not realising his heart already felt a little lighter.
AN: Just an idea I've been playing around with. Let me know what you think of poor old therepy!Draco. :D