Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter or any of its characters

Ch. 1: A Nice Day

The bright sunlight penetrated through the small gap between the thick, dark green curtains hung on the windows of Lucius Malfoy's room. He grunted and opened his eyes unwillingly. He pushed the cover and got up from the bed. He walked toward the windows and opened the curtains. Sunshine flooded into his room—Lucius had to close his eyes for it was too bright. When his eyes were adjusted to the brightness, he slowly opened them and looked at the view outside. It was a beautiful day— the sun shining brightly, the sky blue and clear, birds chattering on the branches of the deep green trees.

"It's a nice day," murmured Lucius to himself.

He stepped away from the windows and headed to the dining room. When the house-elves saw their master awake, they quickly brought his brunch to the table. Lucius sat down at the table and began eating. The food felt as if it had no taste, but he knew well that it was not because the house-elves have been careless. After he took a few more bites, he put down his fork and rose from his seat. The house-elves looked at their master's sunken face worriedly but dared not speak to him.

Lucius went into the library and picked up a book from the shelf nearby. He sat down on the big, green armchair and delved deep into the book. After about an hour, he closed the book, put it on the table beside him, and headed upstairs.

He reached in front of the room with a big, black double door. Staring at it calmly for a moment, he opened the door and stepped into the room.

"Good morning, Narcissa. Good morning, Draco," said Lucius as he entered the room.

There was no response.

In fact, there was nobody in the room. Lucius just smiled to himself and looked around the room. The room was not too large and had deep-green wallpaper and elegant velvet curtains in silver colour, which gave it the mood of Slytherin. The room was vaguely divided into two parts. One side as filled with various Quidditch equipments: a broom, a full set of Quidditch uniform, a Golden Snitch, and so on. The other side of the room was occupied with a large wardrobe made of mahogany; its design was certainly of top quality and its silver handles were in the shape of serpents. On the wall facing the door—which Lucius was currently facing—there were two large portraits hung beside each other. They were the portraits of Narcissa and Draco Malfoy. Lucius walked toward the portraits and smiled at them; Narcissa and Draco in the portraits smiled back at him and waved their hands. He stood in front of the portraits and stared at them for quite a long time, and then he left the room, slightly biting his lips.

It has been three years since the deaths of Narcissa and Draco Malfoy. After Draco was killed in the Battle of Hogwarts by a Death Eater who accused him of betrayal, Narcissa fell ill and never recovered; she soon followed her son, living her husband all alone behind. Lucius Malfoy was the sole occupant of Malfoy Manor now.

Ever since the deaths of his wife and son, Lucius has not gone out once, completely shutting himself up in the Manor. He moved Draco and Narcissa's belongings to the room he visited just now and hung their portraits on its wall. He visited the room every day, just staying there, staring at the portraits of his wife and son, touching the objects which once belonged to them, and feeling their presence in the room.

The room was a haven for him.

During the three years of seclusion, Lucius pondered over many things: the reason that caused the deaths of his wife and son, his choice of joining the Death Eaters, the Battle of Hogwarts, the lost lives of people who fought in it…. When his brains could not handle any more thinking, he went into the library and read whatever book he could grab at the moment. With thousands and thousands of books in the library of Malfoy Manor, there was no shortage in supply for Lucius to read and make his time fly faster.

And this has been the pattern of Lucius Malfoy's life for past three years: waking up sometime between morning and noon; eating brunch (although not much); visiting the room with the portraits of Narcissa and Draco; spending some time in the library, either thinking or reading; eating dinner and then going to bed. Although he did manage to weasel his way out of being punished after the Battle, if anyone had seen him, they would have thought that he had just been released from Azkaban.

Lucius went down to the drawing room. Here, too, was flooded by the bright sunshine coming through the window. He looked outside the window. It was such a nice day that it almost made Lucius feel somewhat weird: he felt as if something was crawling out from the bottom of his heart.

"It is a very nice day," he said to himself.

For the first time in three years, he had a desire to go out of this house.