|Mari (charybdis) wrote in 30_somethings,|
@ 2008-02-24 17:32:00
|Entry tags:||charybdis, harry potter|
Harry Potter; Nights; Goodbye
Fandom: Harry Potter
Theme(s): Nights; 09. goodbye
Disclaimer: I don't own the people; I don't own the place; I don't get paid for anything. Please do not sue.
Summary: How do you say goodbye to a parent you have failed?; Part of "Days and Nights," a longer fic that I'm working on.
That Tuesday night, Lucius Malfoy was put to death for crimes he committed during the First and Second Rising Wars.
It was alright, really. Draco had loved his father, but he'd always known that Lucius was a bit of a blind idiot when someone grabbed him by the ambition like the Dark Lord had. Draco had seen it coming.
He was glad it hadn't been the Kiss -- well, more like abjectly thankful -- even though he knew that his father would not have been pleased. It wasn't the Kiss because Lucius, for all his cruelty and scheming, had never been more than a minion; he'd only ever killed two people, and even then by accident rather than design, and he might have been a Death Eater, but he'd been ineffectual in the extreme. He'd been so small. And in some ways, his death sentence was the last and greatest slight that the world could have given him. It said that he'd never been dangerous enough, monstrous enough, to warrant the Kiss.
But, Draco told himself, it's been so long since you bothered to listen to what Lucius thought. Why start now?
He had loved his father, once, but that had been some time ago, and he'd learned so many things -- difficult things -- since then. He was glad dammit. Lucius had finally got what he'd deserved, and the world was rid of another evil-doer. These thoughts had carried Draco through the first day, through a new world in which his father was dead.
They were good thoughts, Right ones, and Draco needed them, because without them, he would be his father, and without them, it would be him facing death by axe or the Killing Curse. They were important thoughts. But they were hardly even his, and that night, sitting in front of his hearth, he let them go, let them slide away like an ill-fitting mask into the yellow fire.
He had loved his father, although Lucius had been a terrible role model, and spent most of his later life refusing even to speak to Draco. He had loved his father, because he'd never learned how to hate him, and whatever heinous crimes his father had committed, Draco hadn't seen them, and they had never seemed quite real. The sentence was just. Draco knew that, but it didn't seem fair, and he felt so powerless in the face of it, and it made him want to confront the entire Wizengamot, and demand to know what they had done during the war -- besides choosing the right side -- that entitled them to sit serene behind the bench and hand out deaths so blithely.
He had the terrifying suspicion that they would answer "nothing".
There was nothing he could do now, but he should have -- maybe if he'd just tried harder, if he'd kept talking to Lucius instead of giving up -- he should have saved him.
It was just as well, the Right thoughts whispered. Lucius had poisoned him, would have kept on poisoning Draco, would have ruined his life and his career. It was better than a lifetime in Azkaban, now the Ministry had got some of the Dementors back, and it was infinitely better than the Kiss.
Draco sat there until the flames turned to embers and then ash, and the sun touched the horizon. He slept for an hour, stretched out on his couch, still alone, still without answers. When he woke, he shook the ashes from his heart and went to work.
Draco knew that eventually, the Right thoughts would become his own, and when they did, he would finally know how to say goodbye.
"I heard about Lucius."
Draco looked up from staring blankly at his penne arribiata. He was having lunch with Harry in a new Muggle cafe, because it was Wednesday, and they always had lunch on Wednesday, regardless of who had been executed the night before.
"What? Oh, yes. It's a pity, but better than the Kiss, I am certain."
He sounded much more bitter than he'd intended to, and Harry frowned slightly, worried.
"Are you going to be alright?"
Draco waved him away impatiently. "Yes, I'm fine, Potter. He was a Death Eater and a murderer, and he deserved it."
And thankfully, Harry left the subject at that.
After the meal, Harry ordered a cappuccino and when it arrived, he set it firmly in front of Draco.
"Drink," he said firmly.
Draco stared at him in confusion. "Far be it from me to refuse coffee," he began, already cupping the mug possessively, "but what, may I ask, is the meaning of this?"
"You look like shit, Malfoy," Harry replied, ruining the brusque effect by smiling as he spoke. "I'd bet you got less than three hours of sleep last night."
And unexpectedly, Draco found himself smiling faintly in response. "Your stalker-like behavior is not endearing at all, Potter."
"Well yes, but the only reason you think so is because I'm right."
Draco laughed softy -- Potter was right -- and drank his coffee.