The Danger and Delicacy in Intentional Anonymity

The party was in – as muggles would say – 'full swing.' And Draco Malfoy could quite care less. He'd suffered through these elaborate Malfoy masked balls since he could remember, which was at least 14 years now. Every Hallow's Eve… He sighed and dipped his goblet back into the firewhiskey fountain. At least there was firewhiskey…

And where the hell was his mother? If he had to endure this farce, she should, as well. But no. She had 'declined to attend' this evening - milk-livered maneater that she was… He chuffed. Perhaps she felt that Lucius' death made her exempt from these activities – activities she'd insisted on coordinating herself. Patently unfair.

He grimaced behind his elaborate panther mask. An exquisite piece, if he had to say so himself. He'd ordered it from a wizarding mask-maker in New Orleans, Louisiana. The thick black velvet was lush and shiny – genuinely fur-like. Delicate silver floss flashed as the mask's whiskers, and ever so often, the enchanted ears flicked warily.

He liked his disguise – had even charmed his hair black for this occasion. He felt a strange comfort in the anonymity. He looked about at the other revelers. They all liked disguise, he supposed, considering how many of them probably should have been rotting in Azkaban at the moment. Some were garish in bright colors and puffed-up gowns. Others were simply too maudlin in their Gothic restoration costume, prancing about like fairy tale vampires.

Draco scoffed and sipped his drink. Simple black, he thought. Head to toe. Simple. He watched a jester-masked wizard dance by in purple and green striped trousers. Shook his head sadly. Ridiculous. They all looked ridiculous. Like a freak show dancing a waltz after too much drink.

He saddened further at the thought of how much fine Malfoy wine had been exhausted in pursuit of this evening…

A gasp fluttered through the room. Draco's gaze followed the turning heads. There in the drawing room archway stood a fantastic creature. His fingers tightened on the goblet and his trousers tightened over his crotch. He had to have her…

She was like the prize of the evening. Every wizard there knew it. Like a perfect porcelain doll prime to be collected and showcased, she was slim, curvy and spectacular. White satin clung to her like a half-shed skin, covering the best parts of a pale body. But only the best parts.

Slits on either side of her dress revealed shapely egg-smooth legs. Draco assumed the dressmaker had further piked on material by leaving out a back entirely. Two lone ribbons hung teasingly down her spine, occasionally stroking the detailed bonework there as she moved gracefully about the crowd.

Her fingers and hands spoke of refinement and regality. This woman was a woman – not one of the giggling girls who approached him hopefully for dances.

Draco moved about the outskirts of the throng like the predator whose face he assumed. His eyes devoured the witch, desperate to learn her identity. He saw no ring on her finger… Something about those prettily peculiar lips her half-mask revealed made her familiar.

No. Not familiar. Just reminiscent. He swallowed. So perfectly reminiscent...

And her mask… She was obviously as versed in mask craftsmanship as he was. The piece was remarkable; tight white satin vaguely shadowing her eyes and beaking her nose, with a trim of iridescent white peacock feathers thickly trailing flat over her head to her shoulders. The fowl itself was foul indeed compared to her.

Draco paused when she took the hand of a hawk-masked Crispin Greengrass. Obviously, the older wizard was asking her to dance. Behind his own mask, the young Malfoy's nostrils flared. Hardly, he thought. She shall dance with the host first. And he moved like oil through the mingling, tipsy crowd, smoothly and confidently seizing her free hand.

"Madame." She turned, slightly startled, and gave him a curtsy. "Dance with me." He hadn't the words for pleasantries and they weren't truly necessary. He just needed to get this bird in his paws…

Crispin Greengrass drew up sharply, offended by this brash faux pas. But she…she recognized the superior predator. "Very well." Her low voice was rather reminiscent, too. The ache in his trousers grew when she delicately excused herself from Greengrass' odious presence and curved her willowy body to his. He led her assuredly in the slow waltz. She was a fabulous dancer – if a bit formal.

"Who are you?" He had to know.

"Who are you?" She asked in return.

His hidden lips quirked. "Touche." His mask muffled his amused tone. This could be fun… "I hope you're enjoying your evening?"

"My evening has only begun," she answered. She glanced about.

Draco tensed. "Looking for someone?"

Her attention returned to him. "No."

"A…husband?" His certain tone veiled his nervousness at his bold questioning.

The witch looked down shyly. "I'm a widow," she replied. "And probably far too old for you."

"How would you know my age?"

She shook her head. "I've a son. There's a…feeling about you."

'A son? A widow?' Draco grimaced. 'Gods, this has to be one of my mother's friends. Most Death Eater wives are widows now.' He spun her leisurely, eyes sweeping over her hips. 'Oh, well. If we're going to be anonymous…' He was in for a sickle. "What feeling is that?"

She settled back into his slightly tighter embrace, feathers ruffled from the aggressive dance maneuver. "The feeling of young flesh."

Desire pooled hot in his belly. His thumb brushed the soft bare skin of her back purposefully. "Your flesh doesn't exactly strike me as decrepit. Will you hold my youth against me, then?"

Her lips quirked up. "I'd rather like to hold your youth against me," she whispered close to his ear.

He halted suddenly on the dance floor, making her gasp. Seeing eyes on them – jealous eyes – he resumed their dance. "Warm here," he murmured.

"Mm-hm. And loud."

His hand spread open on the small of her back. "Shall we find a more comfortable and quiet place to…talk?" Gods, let her say yes.

He couldn't quite decipher her eye color in the shadow her mask created. They looked black and he hoped it was lust that inked them so. She hesitated. He held his breath. Then… "I would like that."

Yes! He waltzed her briskly to the edges of the swirling mass. "This way, then." He led her from the lavishly decorated dining hall into the long corridor leading to the library and back patio. Along the way was the little-used parlor with the wallpaper his mother called 'too busy.' He ushered her inside it ahead of him, checking the corridor for any audience. Finding none, he ducked in behind her and loudly locked the door.

She stood in the dimness a few feet away. Her chest rose and fell quickly, and Draco stood for a moment just taking her in. But then her lips parted barely and he pounced before she could speak.

There was a very brief struggle as he'd forgotten his mask covered his face fully. He gracelessly shoved it upward just enough to kiss her. Oh, bliss. If he was over-eager, she was over-zealous. His fingers curled underneath the feathers of her mask as he tilted her head to better ravish her moaning mouth.

Her hands scrambled at his clothes and he obediently shrugged out of his suit jacket. She attacked his shirt buttons next, and while she worked, he slipped free the ribbons trailing down her back, revealed a perfect pair of heavy, shapely breasts to their shadowed den.

He cupped those breasts, palmed and squeezed them while they bit and sucked at each other's lips. The witch was wanton and wild, nothing like the girls who'd fumbled with him before.

He was tasting the salty slightly sweaty skin of her neck when she arched and hissed, "I want you inside me." One elegant hand splayed open on his chest and the other slipped inside his trousers to prove her point.

"Oh, that sounds perfect," he growled, backing her toward a gold brocade chaise. When her knees hit the edge of the seat, she whirled them.

Draco lost his balance and plopped onto the stiff cushion, never letting go of the witch's hips. He pulled her onto his lap, maneuvering her dress aside easily when her mouth tasted his again. His fingers caressed her hips before dipping, exploring what lay beneath the edge of her lacy knickers. "Shite, you're wet." He slicked the wetness up her slit, skimmed her swollen clit.

"Ah!" She jolted in his arms, took hold of his tormenting erection. "Watch your mouth." She positioned him and descended, groaning. "Just fuck me."

He would have chuckled at the irony had she not felt so… "Incredible." Then all he could do was hold on and watch.

This witch knew where her pleasure was found and she was not shy in pursuing it. She rode him slowly but firmly, using his shoulder and the back of the lounge to steady herself and work various angles. A constant stream of whispered nonsense poured from her sinfully shaped mouth. "Oh, yesss. That's so good. So perfect." She kissed him between heavy breaths. "Touch me! Make me come!"

The plaintive tone belied her forceful words. She hadn't had this pleasure for some time. There was just a tinge of desperation in her voice. Draco didn't want to disappoint. He slid a hand from a hip to her tightening abdomen and lower, into her now badly skewed knickers. He stroked her gently, flicking that sensitive bud from side to side in rhythm with her undulations.

She obviously approved, buried her fingers in his hair as he laved her beautiful breasts. "Let go, sweet witch," he murmured to her. "Let go and come with me."

She whimpered. Like a spell spoken, his words worked. She clenched around him, bit at his neck and collar. One of the bites hurt, and he returned it on her clavicle as he spilled inside her.

Her thighs shook astride him. They both heaved, catching their breath. He stroked the witch's sticky back, turned her face to him for another kiss. Such suckable lips…

But gently, she broke their connection, sliding his mask back over his lips crookedly. She slipped from his fingers, rising a little unsteadily. She situated her dress.

"Where are you going?" He asked. He wouldn't mind taking her to bed, honestly. Masks be damned.

"Sadly, I'm afraid I must depart." He blinked as she touched feathers back into place, headed toward the door. "I thank you for a wonderful…experience," she said, pausing with her hand on the latch. "But I must go and play hostess now."

His heart may have frozen for a moment. "Hostess?"

Perhaps she heard him and perhaps not. Either way, she gave him one last tempting smile before slipping into the shaft of light from the corridor and closing the door behind her.

Draco stared gobsmacked into the empty room. After a few minutes of shock, he remembered his mask askew and straightened it, hoping the security of anonymity might somehow stifle the revelation of his sick, incestuous mistake.

Numb and a tad shaky, he re-dressed himself. I just fucked my mother. The power of the knowledge was overwhelming. It nearly sent him panicking. Knotting his tie absently, he continued his ruminations. She didn't even recognize me! Her own bloody son! He shrugged. Well, I didn't exactly recognize her, either.

He checked his reflection in the gilt mirror adjacent to the door, smoothed his ruffled hair. Merlin's bollocks. Is my mother a whore? His blue eyes shone in the dimness, softened now by satisfaction. No. She was…desperate. Almost painfully desperate. A blade of sadness pierced his heart shallowly and he realized he wasn't the only reveler this evening who found comfort in anonymity.

He sagged against the door. How empty we've become. Is this to be our life from now on? Seeking our comforts in strange arms? His throat was hot. And if she finds out? He shook his head. She can't. She simply mustn't. It would crush her.

He took a deep breath and grasped the door latch, steeled himself to return to the limelight. And me? He licked his lips, tasted her mouth still. The curl of lust flared once more in his groin. She's my mother. The latch clicked. The door opened. Light assailed him and he heard the muffled sounds of high jinks. She's my mother…

He didn't return to the party.

Her son wasn't at breakfast. Narcissa sighed. He was angry at her. Probably sulking in his room. The boy – no, young man - could be so spoiled still. He had not come to the ball last night.

She toyed with her muffin. 'Those days are over, mother,' he'd told her. 'Elegant balls and elaborate dinners. The Malfoys have fallen, mother. Like the Roman Empire. No coming back. Ever.'

She sniffed. Well, her ball had been a success. So there. She flushed, remembering the young wizard – the panther. Best Draco had not witnessed that spectacle, anyway. She was fortunate to have escaped the notice of her guests. And fortunate the young, firm panther had…slinked away after.

She shivered. The thirst was slaked, but the taste had left her wanting. She drained her tea in a gulp and clinked the cup too loudly in the saucer. Oh, well. Nothing for it.

Fanning herself, she stood and straightened the folds of her skirt. Time to wake the sleeping dragon…

She knocked softly on his cracked door. "Draco?" There came no answer. She sighed and entered his room. "Draco. Wake up."

He groaned beneath his thick duvet. Clothes were scattered about on the floor beside his bed. Narcissa sighed again as she bent to pick them up. "Draco. I know we have an elf, but you should be more careful with your clothes." She draped black pants and suit jacket over her arm impatiently, but froze when she lifted the shirt.

No. She reached with quaking fingers for the object on the floor. Impossible. The mask was soft and lush. She turned it in the sun's light to get a better look, and an ear twitched. "Oh, my gods." His clothes tumbled back to the floor as Draco finally sat up amidst his pillows.

"Mother." He rubbed his face groggily, but snapped to wakefulness at her horrified expression. "What's wrong?"

She rose from her half-crouch and brandished the mask at him. Her shaky voice asked, "Is this yours?" Draco stared at the mask, grimacing. "Answer me!" She cried out, hysterical.

"Yes!" He shouted back. "Yes, it's mine!"

She threw the mask to the floor in disgust, as if this whole situation was the mask's fault. "You were there!" She pointed at him. "You told me you weren't going to come!"

"And you said the same!" He pointed back at her. "I couldn't very well have a Malfoy ball with not one Malfoy in attendance!"

She clapped a hand over her mouth, mumbling. "It was you…Oh, gods. My son! My son!"

His nostrils flared and his eyes darted between two possibilities: play dumb, or own up. She sagged onto his bed and he decided. "Well, I was assuredly a damned sight better than Crispin Greengrass!"

Her stunned eyes whipped toward him. "You're insane!" She hissed. "Did you know it was me?"

"No!" He answered vehemently. "I'm not that insane!" She began sobbing quietly into her hands and he crawled to her, naked save for pajama pants. His hand lingered above her quivering back for an awkward moment before stroking her. "There, there, mum. Don't cry." She cried harder. He spoke louder. "We didn't know, witch! For Merlin's sake! And it's over now, isn't it? We can't take it back." He hugged her to him.

"I'm so sorry, Draco!" She sobbed against his shoulder.

His forehead creased and he looked down at her head. "Are you?"

She shoved away from him and met his eyes. "Of course, I am! I would never have…"

"Ridden me like a dragon-tamer?"

She flushed and wailed into her hands again.

"Oh, mother!" He tried to hug her again, but she pulled away each time. "That was…that wasn't what I meant to say." They struggled until he had secured her in his arms again. "Look at me," he said.

She shook her head petulantly in his neck.

Frustrated, he tilted her face up. "Dammit. I said look at me." He wiped her wet, red cheeks. "Listen. I know you didn't mean for it to happen. Neither did I. And if you want to spend all day apologizing to me and feeling utter shite about it, then fine. But don't expect me to do the same because I won't." She hiccoughed and he softened his tone. "I know it isn't normal or…proper. But when have Malfoys ever been normal or proper? And it felt…" His expression went a bit dizzy and grinning. "It felt really good, mum."

She closed her eyes and tears sluiced down her cheeks. Draco kissed one. "I'm saying I don't regret it happening," he went on. "I just regret your regretting it."

"Oh, Draco." Her eyes were still closed and she pressed her forehead to his. "We are so fucked up."

"Watch your mouth," he admonished. She chuffed and he boldly dipped his head and kissed her. She froze, and he could feel the static of magic between them. Her lips softened and the muscles in her arms relaxed in his grip. He pulled back, whispering. "Just us here, mum. This big house. No one to see or know. And it can all stop." He urged her again to look at him. "All of it – the lonely nights, the guilty conscience, the wanting and the denying. Am I right?"

Her swollen bottom lip quivered. "Yes." The word was almost soundless.

His eyes sparked. "Yes?"

"Yes." Her voice was strong on the reply, but it broke and she flung herself at him, kissing him and touching him as if she didn't know where to begin.

Draco groaned and returned her manic affections, wrestled with her dressing gown and pressed her into the thick feather mattress. She grunted as he climbed over her, suckling at her pebbled nipples. "I can't…"

"Can't what?" He gasped, then nipped.

"Ah! My arms!"

"Oh." He'd pushed her dressing gown down to bare her chest, successfully trapping her arms in the sleeves. A brief fumble freed her and she reached for the tie on his pants.

Draco made a sound of disapproval and caught her hands in his. He planted them at her sides, kissed down to her navel. "Not yet," he murmured. "I'd like to last more than three minutes this time." His mouth trailed down her abdomen.

Her hands jerked free and clutched his hair. She raised her head and took in his descending progress nervously. "You can't!"

"Can't what?" He pushed at her tensing thighs, kissed one.

"That!" She gasped, propped on her elbows.

"This?" He dipped quickly and tongued her distended clit.

"Yesyesyes, that!" She moaned and fell back into the mattress.

"I most certainly can," he growled and resumed his detailed tongue-work. She trilled and keened to his ministrations, all protest lost to pleasure.

"Oh, Draco! That's good, darling!" She was breathy and brilliant, a thin sheen of sweat forming on her pale skin. He slipped two fingers inside her, twisted, rubbed and tweaked until he found the angle that brought her arching from the mattress and more firmly into his mouth. "Shite," she bit out, thighs quivering. "I think I'm…" He sucked her clit so she could be certain. "Oh, gods yes!" She shouted in victory and bucked, shameless as a centaur mare in season.

Draco took advantage of her bleary post-orgasmic haze to scramble out of his pants and over her body. He tugged her to his erection none too gently and she yelped. "Wait!"

"What?" He pressed against her surprisingly strong restraining arm.

"Shouldn't we –"

"Shouldn't we what?" he panted impatiently, cock nudging her dripping core.

She whimpered. "I – I don't know!"

His desperate visage winced. "Shall I put the mask on?"

She looked briefly horrified. "No! But –"

"Good." He shoved past her defenses, groaning. "Oh, very good…"

Her breath caught. "Is – is it?"

In this position, she was not the one in control, and Draco's thrusts were not timid. "Fuck, yes," he whined into her neck. "Bloody fucking hell, you feel perfect, mother."

"Draco?" A little hitching gasp.


Her voice shook with his onslaught. "Should you really call me 'mother' right now?"

He switched up the angle and she cooed. "Ah, what would you have me call you?"

She was smiling, reaching for his sweating face. "I don't suppose it matters to me." She kissed him wetly.

He bit her tongue. "Me, either." His arms folded more fully around her. "Hell, tell me you're close, mum."

Her thready reply was "I'm close, son!"

His hips were a blur. Her nails gouged his shoulders. They bit, grunted and growled like a pair of mating werewolves. When they came crashing together, her sharp teeth drew blood from his jawline, but his own mouth bruised her neck brutally.

They were stuck together – sweat and fluids making strong glue. Their breathing slowed and desperate grips softened to healing embraces, gentling strokes. Weakly, Draco raised his head from her shoulder and kissed her. "Brilliant," he murmured.

She nodded, tired. "You're heavy."

"Sorry." He rolled to his side, but pulled her with him. "Alright?"

She kissed his chest sweetly. "Yes. You?"

He grinned like a drunkard. "I'm…I'm great."

She made a satisfied sound against his skin, then sobered. "Draco?"

"Hm?" He was drifting pleasantly toward a nap.

"Where did you learn to do all that?"

His eyes snapped open. Oh, shite…

AN: Forgive the lateness of my postings. The milf went on vacation. In fact, this little oneshot was inspired by a visit to a lovely shop called Maskerade in New Orleans' decadent French Quarter. Some of the most remarkable masks I've ever encountered are there. The proprietors are true craftspeople. And I know the masked ball story has been done to death, but one can't shy away from such priceless inspiration!