The Sugar Quill
Author: Jaime (Professors' Bookshelf)  Story: Unlikely Remembrance  Chapter: Default
The distribution of this story is for personal use only. Any other form of distribution is prohibited without the consent of the author.

Disclaimer: J.K. Rowling. Heard of her? She kind of owns all this, I don’t.
Author’s note: Thanks to Manu, for helping SO much with loads of crap about this, that she’s practically a co-author. And thanks to Elanor, my wonderful beta! TAKE NOTE – in this, Ginny is eight years old. Do the math, you can figure out other ages. ‘Nother note – those tacky little asterisks mean a not-so-subtle POV switch. Heh.
* * * * * * *
Ron Weasley’s head was about to explode.
He sat up from the stack of papers he had been shifting through and turned to glare at his sister. Ginny was oblivious to this, staring up at the high ceiling and kicking the heels of her shoes against the underside of the hard chair she was sitting on. The noise. The incessant thumping was vibrating through Ron’s skull and beating his brain with a tiny hammer. Which is what he finally yelled at Ginny in an attempt to make her quit.
Sighing, Ginny jumped out of her seat and joined her brother at the messy overflowing desk of their father’s. “Ron, when do you think Dad will come back?” she asked in slight petulant tones. The two youngest Weasleys had been asked (or forced, as they’d tell it) to spend the day at the Ministry with their father. Their mother had seemed to be losing patience with them, day after day, ever since they had ‘accidentally’ flown their older brother Charlie’s old broom straight into the nearest Muggle neighbour’s kitchen window.
Their father had been having a wonderful time showing his children round the Ministry and his department. He had also been pleasantly surprised with how well they had been behaving themselves, and didn’t bother to notice that it was only because they were incredibly, unspeakably bored. But then, Arthur had been called away to look at some dancing toaster, and Ron and Ginny were left in Arthur’s office, forbidden to leave it.
“I don’t know, Ginny.” Ron was quickly losing what little tolerance he had left, and without warning, he threw down the papers crumpled in his hand. “All right. We are leaving,” he stated, waving aside Ginny’s squeak of protest. “We’re not leaving the building, Gin. Just this room! We can stay on this floor; it’ll be fine with Dad.” And he strode over to the door.
Cracking it open, the two siblings peeked out, half expecting the Minister for Magic himself to pounce upon them to send them back inside the office. The hall was empty. They crept all the way over the threshold and grinned at each other, happy with their success so far.
“Okay, wait here.”
“What? Where are you going? You can’t just leave me here like that, Ron!” Ginny tugged on her older brother’s sleeve, getting frantic and more than a little annoyed.
“Don’t worry! I’ll be right back. Not the kind of ‘right back’ Dad meant, but really ‘right back’,” Ron said sarcastically. Checking back to be certain Ginny hadn’t moved, he left, off to look for the loo.
When Ron returned to the hallway where he left his sister, he saw that she was no longer alone. She was talking to a boy about their own age, or rather, she was trying to talk to him. He looked even more bored than they had felt earlier, and stood leaning against the wall with his arms crossed, ignoring Ginny. Ron was a bit bothered at this; who would be rude enough to ignore his friendly little sister like that?
And then a name popped, unbidden, into his memory.
He remembered his father coming home from work every so often, infuriated from a run-in that he couldn’t avoid with Lucius Malfoy. He would rant about and insult the man, his older sons cheering him on, his wife reprimanding them all for their choice of words. Ron had been too young to really understand what Arthur had been going on about, but that didn’t stop him from having a very clear image of the Malfoys in his mind.
And this boy was so clearly a Malfoy; Ron was irritated with himself for not seeing it right off. The pointed features, the silvery blond hair, the pure arrogance radiating right off his skin.
Ron took a deep breath, and marched over to stand by his sister. “Hey, Gin. Who’s this?” He made himself stay polite. Perhaps not all Malfoys were as bad as Lucius. He nodded to the boy. “I’m Ron.”
Malfoy turned lazily to acknowledge the new arrival. His grey eyes looked Ron up and down, then came to rest on the taller boy’s bright red hair. A smirk, the first sign of any interest, flickered on his pale face.
“Well. Let me guess. Weasleys. I hadn’t made the connection with just the girl over there,” Ginny glowered at this, “but no two people could possibly share that… distinctive hair colour without being related. Tell me, where might the rest of your herd be?”
The amused, drawling voice did nothing to calm Ron’s temper, which had been on edge since he first realised that a Malfoy was only a foot away from his sister. Apparently the haughty little brat was as bad as his father.
Ginny, whose temper was slightly more in check than Ron’s, spoke up, “Not that it’s any of your business, but they’re at Hogwarts. You know, we were just trying to be nice to you!” Malfoy snickered, and Ginny huffed a bit. Gnashing his teeth, Ron spoke,
“Well, you’re obviously a Malfoy, aren’t you?”
The Obvious-Malfoy very subtly pulled himself to his full height, raising his chin and giving off the impression that he was royalty. “Well. I’m shocked. I suppose that hair didn’t leak fire into your brain after all; Father would be impressed. Draco Malfoy.” His voice, though still sharp, became a bit warmer. He was quite obviously smug that his family was recognised.
Ron failed to hide his snigger.
Granted, he didn’t try very hard, but Ron was, for reasons unknown to even himself, still attempting to maintain politeness. His laugh made Draco’s self-satisfied smile vanish instantly, and he glowered furiously at both of the redheads. Ginny looked nervously at both boys, and whispered to her brother,
“Come on, Ron. I told you we shouldn’t have left Dad’s office.” She pulled on Ron’s shirt sleeve.
As they walked away, Draco called after them in a casual voice, “My father mentioned you being here today. Said your mother couldn’t wait to get you out of your little ‘burrow’. Moody, is she? Perhaps there’s going to be another ginger haired Muggle-lover inflicted onto the world. Pity.” He managed to convey an air of all-knowing wisdom and scornful condemnation at the same time.
Ron stopped dead and felt his ears start to burn. Ginny attached herself to his arm, not allowing him to turn back and try to run Draco right through the wall, as it was obvious he wanted to. Finally, they continued on their way back to Arthur’s office, refusing to give any other indication that they heard Draco’s words.
“Can you believe him? It’s no wonder why Dad can’t stand that git’s father. Did you hear what he said about our family? I wonder if that’s the kind of rubbish that Lucius says to Dad all the time.” Ron ranted on and on for a while as they returned to the same positions they had been in when Arthur left. “Ginny, why were you even talking to him?”
“I don’t know… he looked bored.” It was such an understatement that the two Weasleys stared silently at each other before bursting into gales of laughter. “Besides, how was I supposed to know?”
It was then that Ron remembered that no matter how angry their father would be when he got home, he always made sure that Ginny and Ron weren’t nearby to hear him. Apparently Ron just had more experience in eavesdropping and being in places he shouldn’t. He explained. After their encounter with the younger Malfoy, Ginny wasn’t especially surprised by the information.
“How did his dad know we were here?” Ginny asked, almost to herself, as she idly drew patterns on her trouser leg.
Ron shrugged. “Probably he just saw us when Dad was showing us around.” He wasn’t overly concerned, and was relaxing enough to get good and bored to tears again.
The door opened. Ron and Ginny glanced towards it, sighing in unison.
“Dad, finally –” It was not Arthur who stood in the doorway.
Ron bolted up out of his chair, the legs giving a loud screech as it scraped backwards, and barked, “What are you doing here?”
“Weasley,” Draco said in greeting. “Other Weasley.” Ginny smiled coldly in return.
“Malfoy,” Ron said mockingly after Draco failed to continue. “I said, what are you doing in our dad’s office? Go and tag along after your own daddy.”
To his ever-increasing frustration, Draco didn’t react to his words. Though he didn’t move to step further into the room, of which Ron very much approved.
“Calm down, Weasley. I only wanted to ask whether you knew anything about this Harry Potter situation.”
Ron groaned inwardly and automatically turned his eyes to Ginny. He had to go and mention that name, didn’t he? Sure enough, Ginny had sat up straight, her eyes lighting up with fascination as they always did whenever Harry Potter was talked about. His story was something of a fairy tale to her, and she never tired of hearing it. She was quite certain that someday she’d meet him and get to ask him all sorts of questions that would, in Ron’s mind, no doubt irritate the legendary Harry Potter immensely.
“What Harry Potter situation?” Ginny asked excitedly. She seemed to have got over the fact that this Malfoy had just insulted their entire family not five minutes ago, Ron thought to himself bitterly. Well, he sure hadn’t forgotten. He was instantly suspicious with Draco’s almost-friendly manner of speaking.
“The one concerning the Dark Lord. You know about that, I assume?”

“Of course we know about You-Know-Who and Harry Potter. What does this have to do with anything?” Ron was close to snapping. Everything that came out of Draco’s mouth was grating at the redhead’s nerves. Couldn’t this boy use some normal words?!

“The Dark Lord is still alive, you see. He’s simply gathering strength to kill Harry Potter, and succeed this time. And once that happens, maybe you’ll begin to appreciate being pure-blood.” Something unrecognisable flashed in Draco’s eyes.
Ron and Ginny were silent. Ginny was staring, stricken, at her brother, looking for any reassurance that Draco’s story was untrue. Ron didn’t take his fierce glare off of Draco however, and spoke in an even, heated voice.
“You’re lying.”
Draco sneered, as though he hadn’t expected this response. “If you don’t believe me, fine,” he said, sounding more like the young spoiled child he was. “Go and get your entire family killed right alongside the Mudbloods.”
Ron’s eyes widened as Ginny gasped. Draco looked almost amused at their reactions. That word… Ron crept closer to Draco, his surprise melting into his old standby of anger as he realised that he shouldn’t have been surprised at all. Malfoys most likely went around their house singing the filthy word!
“Why the shocked face, Weasley? Aren’t happy with my choice of words? Oh, that’s right,” Draco said with feigned recollection. “Like father, like son. I suppose—” He never finished his sentence; Ron stomped the remaining feet to Draco and shoved him with force through the doorway. Allowing himself a smirk, Ron moved to slam the door shut. But it flew open suddenly, sending Ron careening back into the desk. Ginny jumped up.
“What the…?” Ron rubbed his back where it had hit the corner of the wood, and glared at the open door. Ignoring his sister’s command to stop, he went to the entrance again, not allowing Draco to pass through. Pushing him against the door frame, he snarled down at the smaller boy. “Get. Out.” Completely infuriated with how little this seemed to affect Draco, Ron raised a fist.
Glass shattered from behind them. Ginny shrieked, ducking from the flying shards. Ron glanced around in confusion, seemingly torn between finishing Draco off and checking to make sure Ginny was okay, when a shout came from down the hall, successfully distracting them all.
“Ron?! Draco Malfoy! What on earth…? I leave you alone for a minute—er, an hour?” Arthur Weasley stared with dismay at the clock he just passed. “How did it get to be an hour, already? Oh, I’m sorry kids… I meant to be back sooner. Wait.” He seemed to remember that he was exasperated with his son, and hurried the rest of the way down the hall and pulled Ron towards him.
“Daddy!” Ginny cried with sheer relief and ran to Arthur, pushing Ron aside as she did. “Honestly, thank goodness you’re back! I think Ron was about to kill him.” She didn’t sound too unhappy at the thought. Her voice became strained and worried. “That boy said that You-Know-Who is still alive, and that he’s going to kill Harry Potter!”
Arthur’s eyes went comically wide.
* * * * * * *
“I’m sure he knows that already.” Draco’s blasé tone irked Arthur very much. He turned to the son of the man he detested, and began to speak, but was interrupted by another voice.
“Arthur. What, may I ask, is going on here?” Lucius Malfoy had joined them, materialising at the end of the long hallway as though from Apparating. Arthur hissed the situation to the loathed man, and to his grim satisfaction, Lucius appeared very displeased with the news. His eyes snapped to his son. “Draco. Return to my office now, and do not stop along the way.” Draco obeyed, casting one last unreadable glance at the Weasleys.
“Ron, Ginny. Wait in my office please.” Arthur’s tone, unlike Lucius’s, was weary and troubled. Once his children were inside, Arthur stalked down the hall, forcing Lucius with him. Lucius gave the impression that his thoughts were elsewhere as he followed along without argument.
Arthur glared almost murderously at Lucius.
“We simply cannot have these children continue knowing,” he spat out in a voice that gave away exactly how little he trusted Lucius Malfoy and all that he stood for. All that Arthur knew he stood for, and yet could not prove. His scowl deepened.
Lucius, on the other hand, couldn’t quite seem to be bothered as he agreed. After all, it wouldn’t do for him to be under Arthur’s watchful, suspicious eye for more reasons than he was at present time. Besides, he couldn’t have his son running off at the mouth about the Dark Lord’s plots to kill the Potter boy. Knowing Draco, he’d use the information as a threat to make friends; no, Lucius did not want this any more than Arthur.
Arthur was pacing around in a tiny circle, muttering to himself. “Can not believe this… what on earth can we… bloody son of his…” Lucius raised an eyebrow at that last bit. “Honestly… will have to Obliviate them or something…”
“Now there’s an idea. Surprising that such a useful one would come from you, but we’ll take what we can.”
Arthur stopped his mumbling and stared, dumbfounded. Ignoring the insult, he sputtered, “You… you can’t be serious. The Ministry wouldn’t allow a Memory Charm on three children like that, even if it is concerning such a—”
“Oh, come now. I’m certainly not planning on informing the rest of the Ministry of this. Why should you?” Lucius held up a hand to rebuke any other stammering from the red-headed man. “No one need ever know.”
Arthur tried his damnedest to think of a reason to reject this – in all truth - utterly mad idea, but he found he couldn’t. This made him extremely uneasy, and he wanted nothing more than to run off to tattle childishly to a higher power. Instead, he heaved a great sigh, laced with irritation.
“All right, very well,” Lucius said briskly, correctly taking Arthur’s sigh to mean he agreed to the plan. “I shall probably have to do the actual charm, won’t I? You and your sentimental tendencies would likely get in the way. You can never expect to be promoted if you won’t even do an easy Memory Charm…” His voice held no concern for the position of Arthur’s job.
Arthur began to see red, but was ignored as Lucius casually laid out details of what they’d have to do. If Arthur had been a bit more in his right mind, he’d have been horribly distrustful of how effortlessly the other man was treating their situation.
When they had made sure that their respective children were all in separate unused rooms, Arthur and Lucius went to Draco first.
The young blond shot a look of scorn at Arthur as he entered, and then peered curiously at his dad. “Father, what’s going on--”
“Obliviate.” And with one word, Draco had no knowledge of previous events. He blinked and gazed around the room in confusion. The older men left in a bit of a hurry before they had to field any questions.
Once outside, Arthur let out a sigh of disgust. “You couldn’t even be bothered to explain to the boy.” It was not a question, and Arthur really shouldn’t have even thought otherwise; he was certain the other man had no morals, even when it concerned his own family.
Lucius smirked; a nasty expression. “Next?”
Resisting the urge to throttle him, Arthur turned on his heel and made the way to the room where his only daughter was being held. Stopping outside the door, he turned so abruptly that Lucius was caught off guard, nearly colliding into him.
“If you try anything other than a Memory Charm,” Arthur began to say in a threatening nature that was very unlike him.
“Yes, yes. Simple Memory Charm. Wouldn’t dream of harming one of your brood.” Lucius sauntered past and into the room as Arthur resisted that urge again. Forced himself to stay composed in front of his young child.
It was done with before Arthur was allowed a chance to explain, which infuriated him. Unlike Lucius Malfoy, Arthur had wanted to reassure his children, explain that this was all necessary. He was entertaining the idea that it was because of the blond git that he was losing his hair, not because of his large family, when they arrived at the last room.
* * * * * * *
Inside, Ron was muttering creative insults under his breath and shredding a piece of parchment into tiny little bits. He wondered briefly if the parchment was important to anyone at the Ministry – after all, it had been in a stack marked ‘Urgent’, but he shrugged it off. Continued tearing, enjoying the sound it made. It was like background music to his insults, which were growing more and more elaborate.
Suddenly, the door opened. Startled, Ron dropped the bits of parchment and whirled around to stare defiantly at the two adults who had just stepped inside.
A word Ron didn’t understand, and the world faded out.

Two years, some months later…

“—And then the Seeker usually makes a really fantastic dive—” Ron made elaborate gestures in the air to demonstrate, “—to catch the Snitch, I explained the Snitch already, right?” On the seat next to him, The Famous Harry Potter nodded. But before Ron could continue, the door to their train compartment slid open. The two boys turned towards it. Ron rather hoped it wouldn’t be that bushy-haired girl again; he was all too tired of her already.
It wasn’t the girl, or the boy who had a toad. It was three boys, two of them quite large and threatening looking, the other smaller and pale. Ron’s brow furrowed. The small blond one reminded him of something, or someone. But he was certain he’d never seen this boy in his life.
The boy glanced around the space, his eyes faltering on Ron for the slightest of seconds, but almost immediately he diverted his gaze. He stared openly and curiously at Harry. His friends stared blankly.
“Is it true? They’re saying all down the train that Harry Potter’s in this compartment. So it’s you, is it?” Blond Boy’s voice was cold, as though he was disgruntled with not having known this beforehand.
“Yes,” was all Harry said. Ron looked back and forth from Harry to the other three, a bit put on edge by the subtle change in the air.
“Oh, this is Crabbe and this is Goyle,” Blond Boy introduced his two companions, “And my name’s Malfoy, Draco Malfoy.” He stated his name with an attitude that told Ron and Harry that they should be impressed. Unfortunately, it didn’t work.
Ron failed to hide his snigger.
* * * * * * *
Second Author’s note: So. Possible explanation for why Ron had never heard of the Malfoys before. ;) I have no idea if the ages came across, as it is very hard for me to write Draco Malfoy at any age, I found out. And I also don’t believe I’ll be writing Arthur or Lucius any time soon. Quite obviously, the last scene dialogue is straight from the pages of Book One. ;) The ending is a bit weak, but hey. That laugh started a whole big.. thing. Dislike, and all that. Heh. So I apologise to Elanor for the abrupt ending. I kind of wanted that little themed last line in there. ;) But just for her, I may end up doing a Ginny sequel. ;D
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