Our Secret. Ours.
Title: Our Secret. Ours.
Characters: Lucius Malfoy, Draco Malfoy
Word Count: 675
Warnings: dark object and intent
Prompt: Draco, Borgin and Burke's
The cabinet. Always the cabinet. It bored him, but he continued weaving it about with restorative spells, and reinforcing old spells. The undamaged cabinet also remained available for analysis. It was duty that carried his feet to Borgin and Burke's every time - every single time - he got away from that so-called school. He was learning more on his own.
But his duty was genuine. When he though of his father in prison his scalp clenched with indelible urgent dread. Was this the feeling they said felt as if one's hair were standing on end? It felt more as if a cap of ice had been set upon his head.
This was his feeling when he thought of his father and what was being done unto him. Tales of Azkaban had been the horror stories with which he had been raised, and recently the evidence of the eccentric madness of Dolohov and the vacant eyes of the younger Lestrange brother were more haunting than any tale. It was also the feeling that filled him when he walked through the door of Borgin and Burke's to again examine the implacable vanishing cabinet. The store was sprinkled with things his father had sold to elude the hounds of the hunters, as it were. These things should have come to Draco with the house and family name to be his in the distant but inevitable future. There were fantastically rare and irreplaceable dark family heirlooms.
There it was, for instance - a simple gold toothpick with a gold owl on top, smaller than Draco's very finger. He remembered the little thrill it had given him when he had looked at it in his father's case as a small boy. Even now, imprisoned in the glass cabinet, its point turned towards him and he felt the slight pang of exciting fear until it winked.
"Why does it wink at me, papa?" he had asked when he was small.
Lucius had taken the little toothpick from its resting place and showed him the almost microscopic channel for poison running into its tip. It was tiny in any case, but Draco could make out the faint browning that showed it had been used.
"Do you stab someone with it?" He had been thrilled and intrigued.
"No, it stabs them itself." Lucius had winked just like the owl. He had felt the same fascinated fear as Draco now felt when his father had originally showed it to him. "Do you see how it turns toward you, just before it winks? There is a dark spell within it that turns it towards anyone who encounters it. But if you are a foe of its owner - that would be me - it does not wink but rushes towards you, stabbing deep into your flesh. And then the poison works its way to your very heart. It kills you like: so!"
Draco had jumped when Lucius had suddenly clapped his hands, but then he had giggled in conspiracy.
He looked now at his family's little owl, blinking its bright ruby eyes from behind the glass. His scalp froze again with loss. He wanted to show it to his own son, to clap his hands and make his son jump and giggle. It should have been his.
It was slim and tiny. Surely they would not know if... Surely Snape would allow him such a trinket at the gate. He had a little pocket money, and it was so small. It felt imperative that he free it from its confinement - a symbol of freeing his father. Perhaps it would even turn towards Potter and, unblinking, free them all.
"A couple of galleons. But what do you want with that? It only turns about. It doesn't even point to anything particular, just the nearest person."
Evidently Lucius hadn't told him and he hadn't found the secret.
Draco paid and wrapped the sharp toothpick in his handkerchief. One injustice had been made right. Perhaps it was a sign.
"I will call you Athene to protect us," he whispered.
first posted to my dreamwidth account.