A/N: Ahh, oh my gosh you guys, I am so sorry for the long wait! I really hope the chapter was worth the wait!
I want to give a massive shout out to my beta, Black Rose Of Twilight, because without her, this wouldn't be nearly as good!
Once again sorry for the long wait guys, next one will (hopefully) be up sooner!
Chapter 22: End of Summer
Orion and Draco watched with barely concealed amusement as Tom, Remus and Sirius began execution on an enormous sandcastle, it was designed to look just like Hogwarts, with both boys offering input on various features. It was pretty funny to both Orion and Draco that Sirius had basically bullied the Dark Lord of England into creating a sand castle; Orion secretly believed that only Tom could still look both intimidating and regal while crawling about in the sand.
It was their fourth day in the Dominican and by far the most relaxing. The previous day, the family and their friends had gone out on a boating excursion to a small nearby island that was hidden from the muggle population. The island was protected just like the dragon reserves and other places with high magical animal and magical populations and it had been utterly fascinating. It was home to many fantastic, magical creatures both on land and in the sea. They had spent the entire day snorkelling and sightseeing seeing creatures and places that few had ever seen before. Orion had been amazed and couldn't wait to see the pictures that Lucius had hired someone to take. He knew Sirius and Lucius had a few more fun things planned and he couldn't wait to see what was next.
"What are you two doing?" Sirius asked with a grin. He had sand streaked across his face and in his hair.
"Supervising," Draco drawled sounding exactly like Lucius in that moment. "Urgh!" Sirius groaned, "Don't do that, one Lucius is enough!" He teased, ducking his head in time to avoid Remus who had tried to cuff his friend lightly. Orion just giggled.
"Hola." A voice sounded from behind them. Draco turned to see one of the resort staff standing behind the group with a grin on his face and a ball tucked under his arm.
"We're getting a group together to play some volleyball. It's a muggle sport." He hastened to explain at the many confused expressions. "Would you like to play?"
Draco glanced questioningly at his little brother; if Orion wanted to play he would as well.
"Sure," Orion said with a grin, lifting his thin frame up off the ground, "Sounds like fun." Draco heaved a sigh but quickly followed after his brother. Sirius and Remus opted to stay and finish Hogwarts while Tom took the opportunity to follow the boys. Though he wouldn't play the muggle sport he would keep an eye on the two teens.
After a brief explanation of the rules, two teams were formed out of the guests who had agreed to play, and in typical fashion Orion and Draco were on opposite teams.
After some quick strategizing, Draco took the ball for his team and served it. Despite never having played before, years of Quidditch had turned Draco into quite the athlete, and he was quick to pick up on the sport.
An hour later Draco's teamed was declared victorious though Orion's team had given them a run for their money. As they walked back to where they had left Sirius and Remus, Tom couldn't help noticing the confident swagger that the eldest Malfoy son had adopted as well as the cocky grin that now adorned his features. Catching Orion's eye, Tom realized his godson had noticed his brother's behaviour and was just as amused as he was, if the smile he was fighting to keep off his features was any indication.
Dinner that evening was filled with laughter and incredulous questions as Orion and Draco told their parents about the game. Malfoy parents were at the spa today, Narcissa had wanted to go since the day they had arrived but had been unable so now she had finally gotten her way and had dragged her husband along with her for a day of pampering.
"And you enjoyed this volleyball?" Lucius asked.
"It was so fun Dad." Orion said excitedly, "I can't wait to play again!" He added.
"If you play again tomorrow, your mother and I would like to watch." Lucius stated with an amused smirk. Draco smirked and pushed his bangs out of his eyes; since being here his hair care had completely fallen to the wayside.
"You can see me win again." He boasted, smirking playfully at his little brother.
"You only won because my serve was out." Orion pouted though he was grinning.
"We still won little brother, a good Slytherin knows a win is a win, no matter how its achieved."
"Explains so many Quidditch games." Orion said with a smirk. A small silence fell over the family. It was very rare that Orion spoke of his time as Harry Potter, and when he did it usually accidentally revealed something horrific or sad.
"Don't be a poor loser baby brother." Draco snarked, drawing everyone back to the present. Despite that small hiccup, the conversation carried on though Lucius shared a look with his wife. Orion had been seeing a mind healer on and off since his rescue but it had been a little while since his last appointment, it was perhaps time to schedule another one.
"Shall we head to dinner?" Lucius asked, speaking over his playfully bickering sons.
"We have reservations at that nice Japanese restaurant, Lucius. Tom and Sirius are taking the boys for dinner." Narcissa reminded her husband.
"Ahh, right." Lucius said, "Well we should get ready then, my dear." He said stood up and offered his wife a hand.
A few minutes after Lucius and Narcissa left, Sirius rounded up the boys and they all headed towards the main restaurant.
"Where's Uncle Remy?" Orion asked from his place at Tom's side.
"Working on his lesson plans. He decided to get them done now so he doesn't have to worry about it when we're back in England." Sirius said with a put upon sigh. "I did ask if he wanted to come."
"He's studious. It's admirable especially since he's planning lessons for our boys." Tom said, rubbing Orion's shoulder affectionately.
"That's right," Sirius said with a grin, "Nothing but the best for our boys. Maybe I'll check them over when we get back."
"Don't." Orion, Draco, and Tom said simultaneously. Sirius gasped in mock outrage and pouted magnificently until Tom kissed him soundly, eliciting 'ewws' from Orion and Draco.
Arriving at the restaurant the group quickly found a table for four out of the way. The nice thing about this restaurant, as it was the main one at the resort, was the fact that it was buffet style, offering everyone a variety of options which made feeding two teenage boys easy. Draco had a refined palette, cultivated by his parents. Orion was much more relaxed in his tastes and shied away from what he referred to as the 'snobby' food. Years of Weasley meals and Hogwarts food had shaped his tastes, making him a bit of an anomaly in the Malfoy family.
"Go get your food." Sirius ordered the boys as Tom placed their drink orders with the waiter. Wine for him and Sirius and muggle soda for the boys, despite Draco being legal in the Dominican. Draco had been having the occasional glass of wine with dinner or trying the more fun, fruity beverages poolside, but his parents had been watching him like a hawk and restricting him to one alcoholic beverage a day. Soon the group was eating and chatting, discussing the plans for the rest of the vacation. Sirius hinted about some of the plans he was making for the rest of their time there.
"I can't wait." Orion said happily.
"I can." Tom said, ignoring the mock pouting of his partner.
The days flew by filled with sun, fun, and adventure. The relaxing two weeks were interspersed with fun exploits that took the family all over both wizarding and muggle areas of the Dominican Republic and were always fun and educational. Soon, much to Draco and Orion's displeasure, the vacation drew to a close and it was their final night in the Dominican. The family was all gathered together for their last dinner at, what had rapidly become, their favourite restaurant of the many they had eaten at.
"Back to reality tomorrow." Lucius said with a sigh as he sipped his wine. Sirius chuckled and shared a look with Tom, who was smirking into his own wine glass.
"It's such a hardship being the wealthy lord of an ancient and noble family." Sirius snarked teasingly, though he smiled a bit to let Lucius know he was kidding and that he understood the man worked hard to provide for his family and add to the Malfoy fortune.
"Some of us need to provide for the family so I can keep you all in lavish vacations." Lucius drawled ignoring Remus' inelegant snort as he tried to keep his chuckling under control.
The entire meal continued in this manner with some light hearted teasing and stories from the past two weeks being told.
After the lighthearted meal the family decided to take one last walk on the beach. They were set to portkey home quite early in the morning to compensate for the time change and Lucius doubted they'd have time to do much in the morning except maybe grab a quick breakfast.
The weeks after the much needed family vacation flew by and before Lucius and Narcissa even knew it, it was time to go to Diagon Alley to buy the boys' school supplies.
"I can't believe Draco is going into sixth year." Narcissa said, subtly dabbing at her eyes with a handkerchief as she looked down at the supply lists.
"Can you believe Orion is going into fifth?" Lucius said, hands clenching slightly. It had been just over a year since Orion had been discovered and he couldn't believe the difference in his son. Orion had slowly begun to grown into a healthy, happy, young man. Each day was filled with challenges but Lucius wouldn't take it any other way.
"So you would you like to go tomorrow?" Narcissa's voice interrupted Lucius' musing.
"Go where tomorrow?" The man asked looking at her as she held up the supply lists.
"Diagon Alley dear, we should go tomorrow" She repeated with a chuckle. Lucius nodded his agreement before picking up Orion's list and checking it over.
"Interesting book list this year." He mused, eyebrow furrowing slightly as he checked some of the names. "The defence books look good. Remus has picked some very respectable books." Lucius said happily.
"Are you surprised?" Narcissa asked with an arched eyebrow. Lucius ruefully shook his head, silently agreeing with his wife.
"Where are the boys?" He asked realizing the house was far to quiet, since Orion had come back the house was rarely silent and Lucius and Narcissa loved it.
"Draco is at Blaise Zabini's house along with Theodore Nott and Pansy Parkinson, and Orion is sleeping over at Sirius and Remus' manor."
"Ah," Lucius said a wicked grin spreading across his features. "So we have the house to ourselves?" Narcissa raised an elegant eyebrow at her husband before gracefully slipping out of her chair and heading down the hallway towards her and Lucius' chambers. Lucius wasted absolutely no time in following her.
Orion grinned from atop his broom as Remus tossed the quaffle into the air, Sirius quickly swooping down to catch it.
"You two be careful please." Tom called from where he was seated nearby watching his lover and godson tossing the quaffle back and forth.
"We will be." Orion called as he pulled out of a heart attack inducing dive, the quaffle clutched in his arms. They were playing catch with the quaffle since the last time they had played with the snitch, Orion had soundly trounced Sirius and the man had bitterly complained.
Remus groaned from his spot next to Tom as he watched the daredevil antics of the two fliers.
"As nervous as he makes me, I am so happy to see him beginning to enjoy himself again. Even as Harry he loved flying and it's nice to see that he still does." The man said, his eyes glued to Orion.
"I remember hearing about that. Youngest seeker in a century correct?" Tom clarified curiously.
"Oh yes, he was drafted by Minerva in his first year. Draco had stolen Neville Longbottom's rememberall during flying class and while Madame Hooch was away he tossed it. Orion went and rescued it. Minerva witnessed the whole thing and insisted that he join the team, despite first years not normally being allowed brooms or being allowed to play Quidditch." Remus said fondly. "And then in his third year, Sirius got him that damn Firebolt and the boy's been inducing fear and hysteria in all those who care about him since."
"Dratted mutt." Tom said with a rare fond smile as he watched Orion twirl in midair and pluck the quaffle from his irate godfather's arms.
"Are you boys ready to go?" Lucius asked curiously as Draco and Orion came down the stairs into the family room.
"Yes." Draco replied while Orion nodded a bit apprehensively.
"Are you okay?" Lucius asked his youngest son curiously seeing his slightly nervous expression.
"I-I think so," Orion said softly, "I just had so much fun this summer going back to school and away from you and Mum and everyone else is sad." Orion admitted, "Hogwarts wasn't great last year." He added quietly. Lucius sighed and placed an arm around Orion's shoulders.
"It's perfectly natural to miss your family, but we'll still come and see you and you'll see us regularly." Lucius quickly reassured. "Remus is teaching defence again this year so he'll be around and of course Severus will be at the school as well, and I'm sure he's looking forward to seeing you two again." Lucius reminded his son with a smile.
"Oh yeah!" Orion said with a small smile, suddenly more excited at the prospect of seeing his Uncle Sev and learning more from his Uncle Remy.
"Shall we go then?" Narcissa asked her arms linked with Draco's as she prepared to apparate them.
"Meet you outside Gringotts?" Lucius asked curiously. The bank was near a secluded apparition point that the family preferred to use. Narcissa nodded in agreement, before she and Draco disappeared with a loud crack.
"Our turn." Lucius said with a grin before wrapping his arm around Orion's shoulders and following behind his wife and eldest son.
Landing in a little alley beside the bank, Lucius took a moment to make sure he and Orion weren't too ruffled before they left the alley finding Draco and Narcissa waiting for them near the steps. Unfortunately another family was also standing on Gringotts steps but it wasn't one Orion was excited to see. The Weasley family, along with Hermione, were standing on the steps of the famous bank. Mrs. Weasley tried to organize everyone while also trying to keep control of unruly clutch. Fred and George were conspicuously absent, probably busy with their store and Arthur was subtly trying to sneak away to check out a display at Florish and Blotts that was advertising muggle books.
Sneering in true Malfoy fashion, Lucius swept his family past the group of red heads stiffening slightly when a strident voice called out for Harry Potter.
Orion flinched and shuffled closer to his parents though he kept the cool expression on his face.
"I don't know that person." Orion said with a sneer ignoring Ginny Weasley's gasp as she clutched at her heart and babbled about him not meaning that.
"Please excuse us we have some school shopping to do." Narcissa said with a cold smile as she shuffled her family along, shaking her head Molly almost pityingly.
"Harry! Harry wait" Ginny called out again, tears beginning to stream down her cheeks, she made as if to lunge forward but Hermione quickly held her back, shaking her head at the younger girl as she looked at Orion with an unreadable expression. Hermione wasn't really close with Ron or Ginny anymore, not after the catastrophe that was last year, but when Mrs. Weasley had written her a letter asking if she was coming to visit during the summer and if she needed someone to go to Diagon Alley with, Hermione hadn't been able to refuse. She loved her parents but they were hard to shop with, especially for school supplies, mainly because they got so sidetracked by all the other shops.
"He's not Harry," Hermione half-whispered, "Just leave him be." She added ignoring the horrified glare Ron was giving her. "Can we just get our books?" She added looking desperately at Mr. Weasley.
"Yes, yes of course. Molly why don't you and Hermione go get the money from the vaults and I'll get the books with Ginny and Ron, we'll wait for you to join us." Arthur said, knowing it would be best to get Ron and Ginny away from Har-er-Orion Malfoy.
"Sounds good dear." Molly said distractedly ushering Hermione towards the bank.
Standing inside the apothecary Lucius pinched the bridge of his nose. He now remembered why he hated back to school shopping when the letters first came out. The entire alley was packed with back to school shoppers and the entire place was a nightmare.
"It's really to bad you can only buy some of these items at Diagon Alley." Narcissa said wrinkling her nose at the list, "Paris would be much less crowded."
"You just want to go to Paris." Orion teased his mother from where he was standing by her elbow.
"Quiet you," She said tweaking his nose playfully. "It would be less crowded"
"Not necessarily, does Beauxbatons go back around the same time as Hogwarts?" Lucius asked. Narcissa didn't reply but she did look thoughtful as she grabbed a few more vials and added them to their small basket.
"Do we need anything else from in here? Severus is asking for a fair amount of stuff for the sixth years." Lucius said rolling his eyes slightly. The man got more and more exacting every year, not that he normally minded but shopping for two students was more challenging then one.
"It's not that much Lucius." a familiar voice sounded from behind the man.
"Uncle Sev," Draco said with a grin, "It's more then what you wanted last year."
"Well if you dunderheads would stop destroying my potions stores and cauldrons you wouldn't have to buy all this." The greasy haired man said with a smirk.
"How was your ingredient gathering?" Orion asked curiously, eyes shining at the prospect of hearing about all his uncle's adventure.
"It was quite educational." Severus said with a small smile.
"Why don't you come to dinner ?" Narcissa slyly extended the invitation, hoping to learn just what the dour man had seen.
"Of course, besides I have some small things I found for the boys." Severus said with a smirk.
"Presents?" Draco said with an excited grin.
"Of course, you've trained me well." The dark haired man drawled at his godson. Draco had the good grace to flush but that didn't wipe the smile from his face.
"You didn't have to do that." Orion said his voice soft.
"I know," Severus said crouching down slightly so he was at eye level with the youngest Malfoy. "I wanted to." He reassured. Orion just nodded though he had a small smile on his face.
"Thank you." Orion whispered, resisting the urge to hug the man, he had missed Severus this summer. Smiling kindly Severus ruffled Orion's hair slightly before he rose to his feet again.
"I'll see you this evening then? I still have quite a few ingredients to buy for my stores." Severus said. Lucius nodded and watched the man deftly weave through the crowded store.
"Shall we pay for this and then take a break for lunch?" Narcissa asked, sending the basket to the counter with a wave of her wand.
"Sounds good to me." Lucius said glancing at the boys who were nodding excitedly.
Severus stepped through the floo into Malfoy Manor and allowed a soft sign to escape him. He was surprised how much he had missed this family during his expedition. He had been surprisingly sad to learn he wouldn't be able to join them on their vacation and he couldn't wait to see the pictures he was sure Lucius had either taken or had commissioned. Snorting he mentally corrected himself, Lucius had had pictures commissioned who was he kidding.
"Something funny?" An unwelcome voice intruded on his thoughts. Turning he resisted the urge to frown as he saw his least favourite person.
"Black." He greeted with a sigh.
"Snape." Sirius said with a grin, "Missed me have you?"
"Of course, nothing like watching a dog chase his own tail to keep one amused." Severus snarked, though neither he nor Sirius were being malicious. This was just how the two communicated.
"You two are ridiculous." Tom said from where he was standing behind Sirius.
"Hush you." Sirius said gently driving his elbow into Tom's side. Severus resisted the urge to rub his eyes, he knew the two were together but after being away for awhile it was strange to see how domestic they had become.
"Hello Severus." Remus greeted, stepping around Tom and extending his hand. "How are you?"
"I'm quite well Lupin, and yourself?"
"It's Remus, and I'm doing well. Looking forward to hearing about your summer. The boys are very excited as well."
"Alright, Remus it is." Severus said with a small smile.
"Ahh! Look! Look! Snape can smile, take a picture! It's a miracle!" Sirius cheered playfully.
"Oh stuff it you insufferable mutt" Severus groaned. "Don't you have a stick to fetch?"
Dinner was wonderful, as it always was at the Malfoy residence, and soon the family was gathered in the family room eagerly awaiting Severus' stories.
"So how was it?" Orion asked, practically bouncing in his seat. "Did you see any animals? Did you have to fight any off?"
"Excuse me" Severus held up his hands, "One question at a time please."
"Did you see any animals?" Orion asked again forcing himself to calm down a bit.
"Yes, many. A fair quantity of potions ingredients are harvested from various magical creatures. I, however, unlike some unethical potions masters, harvest my ingredients humanely." Severus intoned bitingly. "Despite what those uneducated fools seem to think, the method does matter. Unicorn hair, for example, is practically useless unless it is found already detached from the creature or freely given… like their blood." He added as an afterthought.
"Did you see any unicorns?" Orion asked curiously.
"Yes. I followed one herd through the welsh countryside. I needed both hair and blood, and it took me a good week to win their respect. Finally, one of the mares agreed to let me have a small vial of blood and a few hairs from her mane."
"That's not very much." Draco observed.
"No, and that's why the ingredients so rare or so hard to come by. Not many have the patience it requires to earn the animals' respect, and those that do know they won't receive a lot. Wand makers and potions masters alike have a job that requires a lot of patience, hence why there aren't a lot of us in these fields." Severus explained.
"Cool." Orion breathed, eyes shining as he took in everything Severus was saying.
"I believe we may have a future wand maker on our hands." Narcissa said, nodding at her son with a smile.
"Why not potions master?" Lucius asked curiously.
"He doesn't enjoy potions like Draco does, but he seems fascinated by what Severus is telling him, so perhaps he'll enter into wand making."
"Narcissa, he's fifteen in two days, you honestly believe he's already planning his career?"
"Not seriously, but I'm sure he's entertaining the idea." Narcissa said with a small smile.
"Do you have any idea of what we should do for his birthday? I can't believe it's August already." Lucius asked curiously.
"No, I was thinking just a nice meal. Maybe out at a restaurant of his choice with his family." Narcissa said with a small smile.
"Sounds good." Lucius agreed. Orion wouldn't want a big party nor would he enjoy one.
"Did the gifts arrive yet?" Lucius added, they had sent away an owl order for Orion's present before they had gone to the Dominican Republic.
"Last night. I have them in our room." Narcissa said with a smile, "I hope he likes it." She glanced over at her youngest son who was completely entranced by Severus' stories.
"He will." Lucius said with a smile. "He'll probably be ecstatic."
Both Malfoy parents smiled softly as they watched their sons, pride practically radiating off the pair, as they enjoyed the evening with their family. Severus had had quite the adventure by the sounds of it and both Draco and Orion were completely captivated… Sirius was as well though he would never admit it.