My love is like to ice, and I to fire

- Sonnet XXX, Spenser

The light breeze from the open window made the nets flutter and she drew them back, looking down below into the garden. The sunshine came down hotly and she could hear the voices of her children somewhere outside. She knew that they were playing hide and seek, having heard Andromeda count loudly from fifty. She smiled faintly, pushing back a strand of mahogany hair back behind her ear from where it had escaped her chignon. She had no doubt that Narcissa, her youngest, would be easy to find and sure enough she saw her second and third child start the hunt for their eldest sibling. She also knew that that would keep them occupied for a long time.

Sighing, she retreated from the window and settled once more behind her desk, picking up the letter she was currently in the middle of writing. Taking up her quill she continued her response, loosing herself to the sound of the quill making swift, scratching noises against the parchment.

Then she heard his firm, steady footsteps approach and the door swing open but she didn't look up from the letter she was drafting. Nor did she when he leant down and pressed his lips against her cheek. She turned her head away, crossing out a line neatly and began another sentence.

"I have a gift for you," he said lowly but still she didn't lift her head. Only until something gleamed in the corner of her eye did she glance up and eyed the necklace he dangled by her. She regarded it nonchalantly, the emerald caught the sunlight and gleamed a green fire that would be cool to touch. She raised her eyes to her husband and he watched her carefully. She inwardly sighed and took the necklace from his hand, it was heavy and the silver chain colder than she though. Cygnus smiled slightly as she ran her thumb over the jewel and then set it down on the desk, pushing it into a corner.

"It is pretty," she said without any real emotion in her voice and he picked it up, studying it as if for the first time.

"Quite," he replied and swung it in his hands again. She lifted up her quill and tried not to look at him.

"You can put it over there – with the others," she added, waving her free hand towards the jewellery box on her dresser.

Cygnus strolled over and opened it, his eyebrow slightly raised as all the jewels glittered up at him. Necklaces, earrings, brooches and rings all brought for her by him and hardly worn. It was a waste of money but it had become a habit that he had no intention of breaking. Despite her outwards indifference, he knew his wife well enough to know that later, once she was alone again, she would go, open the box and admire them.

She turned her head a fraction watching him touch a string of pearls before he closed the box and then seat himself into the spare chair, his long legs stretched out and he gave her another flashing smile. Her brow furrowed and turned back to the letter but rather than writing, she just traced patterns lightly on the parchment. It was only a draft after all.

"Have you any real purpose here other than to give me another useless gift?" she asked crisply and didn't need to look to know that he was still smiling.

"None other than to see you, dearest," he replied slyly and she rolled her eyes.

He was an impossible man and even more so when he toyed with her. He was more refined than his brother, but less than his sister and although more than a little aloft with his children, he showed her affection consistently in private. She quite enjoyed his attention though never told him so, playing the role of the haughty wife to perfection. Yet he already learnt how to charm her and appeal to her sentiments. It was both endearing and irritating. Early on he had discovered her attraction to jewels and expensive clothes and allowed her to spend extravagantly. It seemed to please him and she wondered why since she rarely gave him anything in turn.

"I see," she moved in her chair so she wouldn't have to keep twisting her neck to face him. "We need to do something about our daughter."

"Which one?" he sighed to which she raised her brow.

"Bellatrix of course, she is getting wilder by the day," she said and Cygnus tilted his head thoughtfully. "And she is a year away from going to Hogwarts."

"Where they can deal with her," he murmured and then caught his wife's eye. "My apologises. I shall talk to her."

Druella inclined her head. Out of her three children, Bellatrix was the one that caused her most worry and she did not understand how her husband could be so dismissive of her behaviour. He rarely took an interest in the girls, though Bellatrix had a keen mind and shared a lot of traits with him and he, in his own way, felt more affection for her than the other two.

"And your sister writes. She wishes to visit," she gave him a look and his face mirrored his own displeasure.

"Does she indeed?"

"What shall I write to her?" Druella asked and Cygnus rose from the chair.

"Tell her that next weekend is available, provided that nothing else intervenes," he told her and then moved to stand by her. "You can finish that later," noting the copy of the letter she was writing.

She gave him a sardonic look. "Why?"

"I brought you a gift-"

"Which I never asked for," she interrupted but he continued.

"And as such, I must demand my gratitude."

"Demand?" her brows rose. "You are making demands off of me now, husband?"

"Yes," he pulled her to her feet, not so gently but she felt a tingle of unwanted excitement course through her. Really, she thought to herself, she should not enjoy being man-handled like this.

"You know I never answer to demands," she murmured coolly as he drew her against him so that he breasts were pressed tightly against his chest.

"Hmm," Cygnus traced her spine and then pulled at the laces of her dress. "I think you forget, dearest wife, that there are certain demands that you most certainly enjoy."

"Is that so? I don't recall," she said lightly as he dragged her dress to her hips. Her hands came up to press against his chest. "The girls-"

"Are outside and will be for some time," he stated and then caught her chin with his fingers. "We have more than enough time."

She shivered slightly, about to open her mouth to what would be another protest but he kissed her and her words were stifled. She didn't respond for a moment but the slow, warm pressure of his mouth and then the teasing lick of her bottom lip made her begin to return his kiss and he inwardly smiled. He enjoyed the fact that his wife fought against his desires - and her own. It made it far more enjoyable to see her give in. He dragged his mouth down her neck then, sucking over her pulse and she let out a small moan, tilting her head back. His fingers came up and sought the pins in her hair, pulling them free and dropping them onto the rug beneath their feet. Her hair fell in a heavy mass and he curled one soft lock around his finger.

"Druella," he whispered, his voice a low rumble and she opened her eyes to gaze at him as he lifted his head. He sparked the flame in the icy cavern of her heart and wordlessly she captured his mouth, arms coming up to wrap around his shoulders and fingers speared through his hair. He felt her nails lightly scratch his skull and bit her lip not too gently.

He edged them back towards the foot of the bed, her bed, and her fingers swiftly opened the buttons of his shirt. He pushed the rest of her dress down her legs and she stepped out of the fabric, in that moment disregarding the fact that the dress had been very expensive. He tugged and freed her of her slip as she toed off her shoes and he dropped down to roll down her stockings. He pressed small kisses on her stomach and her hip that had become recently exposed as he rid her of her undergarments. She gazed down at him, her fingers running through his thick dark hair before he drew himself up and brought her mouth back under his.

She was aware that whilst she was naked he was still clothed and she moved back, her head titled up with a raised eyebrow. He was swift in removing his clothes as she watched, he kept her gaze and for a brief moment they allowed themselves to look over each other. She stretched out her hand, he caught it and wrapped his other arm around her waist lowering her down. Leaning above her, he trailed his fingers down her long pale throat then down between her breasts. As always she watched him carefully and he cupped one full breast, seeing a spark of desire in her eyes as he pinched her nipple slightly. His mouth followed the path his fingers had taken and then, when his tongue curled around the tight peak, he felt the shiver that passed through her body. She tried to remain impassive to his touch for as long as possible but he knew that that shiver was one of a small surrender.

Her eyes slid shut and she made a small sound in the back of her throat, wanting more and she could feel Cygnus' smile against her breast. He brought his mouth back up to hers but his hand skimmed down the smooth skin of her stomach and over her hip and rested on her thigh. Her eyes fluttered open, curious to see why he had pulled back from the kiss and saw he was gazing at her intently.

"You are beautiful," he told her, his tone so seductive and dark it made her breath catch for a second. It still mattered to her, foolish as it might be, that he found her beautiful. Her pride and vanity would not allow for anything less.

His fingers moved again over her skin, barely touching her and stroked the inside of her thigh. She moved her legs further aside, her eyes never leaving his as he shifted to lie between them. He kissed her lightly, wanting to feel his fingers slowly brush against her sex. She sucked in a small breath as he slid his finger slowly inside her wet heat and then added another when she made a sound. She raked her nails lightly down his back, digging in when he thrust his fingers in harder and pressed his thumb down on her clit.

He knew, of course he did, exactly how to touch her and her breaths grew shorter and ragged. She kissed him ferociously, her leg coming up to hook around his hips and drew him closer to her still. He withdrew his hand, sucking momentarily at his fingers that made her groan and then clasped her hands so that their fingers messed and she used that moment to roll her hips up and push him onto his back. She sat above him smiling a little and their hands played as she leaned down to kiss his neck slowly and thoroughly and now it was his turn to groan which pleased her. Then she let his hands go and slid her body down until she was pressing open mouthed kisses across his abdomen.

"Is this what you want, husband?"

He pushed his hand into her thick hair and shook his head which made her eyebrow rise but she crawled back up nipping his lips and then brushed herself against his erection. Her hand slipped down and stroked him before sinking down and their eyes met. This wasn't the time for prolonging pleasure, they both just sought release and she leaned over him, pressing her palms into his shoulders for balance and moved on him. He thrust against her, hard and fast, and she moaned over and over, their breaths broken and their kisses vicious. He fisted his hand in her hair, pulling her head back and heard her hiss in pain but he didn't stop, sucking and lightly biting at the rapid pulse at her neck and she dug her nails into him, dragging them down his chest.

Once more their position changed, he pinned her beneath him and drove them both to the brink and beyond. She gave a strangled cry and her body shuddered before a long sigh escaped her as he broke with a deep groan.


She only waited a few moments, briefly lying next to him before she shrugged off his arm around her waist and sat up. She pushed back her deep chestnut curls and climbed out of the bed, stepping into her undergarments swiftly before drawing up her under slip. He watched her idly, his wife putting herself back together again. Tightly pulling the laces and tucking every strand of hair into a tight knot and freezing over. He had to admire the way she could quickly compose herself once more. Back to sensible, haughty Druella that no one would suspect enjoyed being utterly ravished by her husband in the middle of the day.

She cast him a look as if she knew exactly what he was thinking, her eyes daring him to say something. He did not and soon he followed suit and dressed carefully. He leaned down to kiss her but she deliberately turned her head so that his lips brushed the side of her mouth and she heard his dark chuckle before he left, closing the door behind him. She went back to her desk, easing into the chair and pressed her hands against her cheeks which were warm. Her body was still flushed with the last lingering embers of desire that she concentrated on extinguishing.

She heard her daughters once more outside and picked up her quill to begin her work again.


A few hours later, when her hand ached and her limbs had stiffened from the ridged position she had been sitting in, she turned her head to look at her jewellery box. After a brief consideration she stood up and opened it, carefully drawing out the new item to her vast collection. The phrase all that glitters… entertained her thoughts but the truth was that all that glittered was gold with him. Her lips turned up into a fond smile as she held the emerald in her hand. She unclasped the chain and then fastened it around her neck, the precious stone a comforting weight on her chest. She wondered if she should slip it under her dress to hide it from sight but then decided against this.

He saw it immediately when she descended downstairs and merely raised one dark eyebrow with a small smile. She gave no meaningful look back, gliding past him without a word but her fingers brushed against his side and it was enough.


A/N: Complete. Reviews are love x