HAPPY BLOODY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! I am so sorry for leaving it this long, but the holidays were slowing me down. I have you a Christmas present, though! Be happy!

Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter or any of the characters, objects, concepts, etc. that you recognize. The part in Italics is right from Sorcerer's Stone.

Enjoy!

Your father left this is my possession before he died. It is time it was returned to you. Use it well.

There was no signature. Harry stared at the note. Scott was admiring the cloak.

"I'd give anything for one of these," he said, "Anything. What's the matter?"

"Nothing," said Harry. He felt very strange. Who had sent the cloak? Had it really once belonged to his father?

Before he could say or think anything else, the dormitory door was flung open and Fred and George Weasley bounded in. Harry stuffed the cloak quickly out of sight. He didn't feel like sharing it with anyone else yet.

"Merry Christmas!"

"So did your friend like their present, Harry?"

Both of the redheads were wearing bright blue sweaters, one marked "G" and the other "F". They clashed horribly with their hair. Harry looked at them disdainfully.

"What are those things?" Scott asked, gesturing to the blobs of cobalt yarn.

George-at least, the twin wearing a "G"-laughed. "Every year, mum makes sweaters for each one of us kids. Apparently, we need to remember which one of us is which, so she gave us letters on ours."

"Yep," said Fred, "But we're not stupid. We know we are called Gred and Forge."

They all laughed at this. "Wow," Harry said, "And I thought I had it bad. My aunt sent me a fifty pence piece."

The four of them chatted amiably on their way down to breakfast. When the post arrived, Harry got letters from all his friends. Millicent loved her new brooch, Jesse had already put his fabulous, wet-start no-heat fireworks to good use, and Crabbe and Goyle had each scrawled thank-yous for the sugar quills. The only letter missing was Draco's. Harry tried not to become worried.

"Oi, Fred," Harry called across the nearly empty Great Hall. "Jesse loved the fireworks, he says thanks."

Fred put a thumbs-up before returning to his conversation.

Just as Harry was becoming truly worried about Draco, the boy himself threw open the doors and marched into the great hall, proud as a peacock. Harry gave a strangled cry of surprise and relief.

"Draco! I thought you were spending Christmas at the manor..."

The Slytherin smirked. "I was. I decided I wanted to be here more."

Harry's smile was brighter than all the candles in the great hall combined.

{}{}{}{}{}

"I really liked my dragon plushie," Draco said, setting the little stuffed animal on his bed. "But don't tell Blaise and Scott and them. They would laugh."

Harry grinned. "There's nothing wrong with liking cute, cuddly things," he said innocently. "It's just not very manly."

Draco laughed and threw a pillow at him. "Eat hippogriff poo."

A comfortable silence fell over the two. Snow began falling lightly outside, coating the palace grounds in a thin layer of white. Harry thought perhaps it would last until morning, and they could have a snowball fight on brooms.

"Did you get my gift?" Draco asked off-handedly.

Harry turned from the window. "Yes," he smiled. "A pensive. For memories, right?"

Draco nodded. "I suppose you've never used one. I'll show you how, if you like."

"Alright," Harry said, moving across the room to the bowl sitting on his side table. "Show me how it works."

Draco joined him. "Okay, first. Think of a memory, something you want to re-live. Got it? Now put your wand to your head, and imagine pushing your memory at your wand. Attach it, let it be drawn out of your head."

Harry did so, and a silver-blue strand appeared as he drew is wand away. "Like that?" He asked as the last of it left his head. He could feel a tiny shadow of the memory, but it was no longer there.

"Now," Draco said, "Drop the memory into the pensive, like-yes, exactly like that. Now, we watch." He leaned forward until his nose touched the liquid in the pensive, and quite suddenly he was not there anymore. Harry froze for a second, before rushing to touch his his nose to the surface of the pensive, and he was falling into the zoo he had visited for Dudley's birthday.

He somehow landed on his feet right next to his friend, who was watching Harry's conversation with the snake. "What are you saying?" He asked. "I can't understand parseltongue..."

"Uh, well I just said, 'Where do you come from, anyway?' And it pointed to the sign, see? Brazil."

Draco laughed. "And you didn't think it was the least bit odd that the snake could understand you?"

"Sure," Harry said, a bit embarrassed. "But, like I said, River had kept me company at home, and I already thought I was a freak."

The memory faded. Harry felt himself rushing back up, and he popped out into the dorm room he had left only minutes ago. Draco was next to him.

"Thanks, Draco. It's a great gift," Harry murmured, brushing the hair out of his eyes.

Draco smiled back. "You are welcome."

Aaaaannnnnddd...that is it! On to review answers.

IRT DarkSnakeLordess, think-pink-jess, jkl, MirrorFlower and DarkWind, christinaemerald, networkzero, and emo-rocker101: Thank you all! I really appreciate your reviews!

IRT AlwaysLaughing1: thank you for the warning. I am trying to keep him true to himself, and it is a fine line to walk...tell me if I get too mushy! I promise he will have some strong moments after this.

IRT David-Ei: I'm glad you like it! Voldy really wants Harry dead, more from fear than anything. I don't think he would allow Harry to join him, even if Harry was willing. that is one of the reasons dark!Harry stories usually turn me off. It will probably end up being a series, with two years in each 'story', except seventh year, which will get its own. Harry has the same lineage as he does in canon story, but it is an interesting idea. Perhaps I will write a shorter story with him as a descendant of Salazar. Keep reading and reviewing!

IRT Slytherinpride6: Sorry! Cliff-hanger was necessary. I hope you like this chap as well.

IRT Insane Worm: I freakin' love Madam Pince, too! I just had to give her a moment in that chapter. Thanks! And you still got a shot at number 100, I only have 84 reviews right now...

IRT Sinattea: Darling, I am beginning to live off your reviews alone! You flatter me too much! I couldn't stop grinning for a full fifteen minutes after reading your review. I am so very happy that you thought so highly of it. I love my OC's, too! Scott is kinda my replacement 'Ron' figure who isn't as stupid or poor(sorry, I am in an anti-Weasley mood!) and Will is my 'Big Brother' guy. I love Snape, hate Nagini. I know! I got more pensive action in this chap. Draco knows about parseltongue (my chapter two!) but nobody else. Aww, you make me smile. Thank you thank you thank you! P.S. you are welcome. Keep it up!

Oh my friggin gosh guys, have a wonderful holiday! I probably will not post again until after New year, sorry! Don't kill me!

love you all!

MDB

P.S. when I lump everybody's names together to answer reviews, it doesn't mean I'm picking favorites. It just means you all said essentially the same thing, and while I love every one of you, I don't want to write 'thank you' seventeen times. Sorry, I'm a lazy American. Happy Christmas!