of the Fathers
by The Morning
Author’s Notes: Many thanks
to Ashwinder for her input and Ara
Kane for Beta Reading.
Chapter 2: Troubled
given day, the Potions Shack was abuzz with activity. The modest building was home to numerous cauldrons,
countless glass vials, ingredients galore, and enough books to make one think that
he had just stumbled into the Potions section of Flourish and Blotts. There were
usually about four or five potions brewing at a time, each giving off its own
distinctive odor, and Draco Malfoy would move from
cauldron to cauldron, carefully inspecting each one and adding the necessary
ingredients. He had enough regular
customers that his days were fairly predictable. The sniffling Fitzpatrick picked up his Pepperup Potion every Monday at nine o’clock sharp, while
Mrs. Purejoy stopped in on Tuesdays just before
having tea with her mother-in-law to collect her weekly dose of Euphoria, and
the representative from the Department of Magical Law Enforcement came in for Veritaserum every other Friday, just after lunch. During business hours, he was rarely alone in
the Shack for more than a few minutes, especially when it was time for his Wolfsbane customers to come in. Today, however, was rather slow in
be nine Sickles, Iowerth,” Draco said to his customer
as he put stoppers into several just-filled vials filled with a powder blue
C-c-c-calming Draught?” sputtered Iowerth Spinks, a lanky
man whose hunched-over posture hid his true height. “Th-th-th-that’s
more th-th-than usual.”
carefully wrapped the vials and placed them in an indistinct brown box. “You did order nearly twice the usual
amount. You’re not taking it more than
three times a week, are you? Overuse can
cause horrific side effects.” He handed
the box to Iowerth, knowing that his very faithful
customer was indeed taking much more than he ought. The stuttering was a dead giveaway.
c-c-c-course not,” Iowerth managed as he counted out nine
Sickles with a trembling hand.
“S-s-s-some of it’s f-f-f-for my w-w-wife.”
As Iowerth left the Potions Shack, Lucette
hurried in, beaming. Her smile faltered
for a moment as she caught sight of Iowerth quivering,
but she shook her head and turned back to her husband.
never guess what just happened,” she said as the door closed behind her and
walked towards the counter.
“Scorpius wrote to say that he’s seen the light and he’ll
stop running around with the Potter boy straight away?” His tone was purposefully dry.
Lucette placed her hands on her hips and gave him the look. “No.
And we decided—”
“You decided; I merely conceded,” he
her eyes at him and walked around behind the counter, joining her husband. Smoothing out the front of his work robes,
she said, “We decided that it would
be good for him to branch out and make friends outside of his House. You were the one who didn’t want him to be
judged according to your father’s alliances.
This will help him.”
Draco hated when his wife was right.
“But of all the children for him to make friends with…”
Lucette took his hand and patted it. “On the bright side, they are from good families. At least we won’t have to worry about him
getting involved in Dark magic now.”
groaned. She had been gently teasing him
about their son’s new friends ever since they’d read his first letter telling
them the news. Every letter since had
detailed his afternoons with his new friends. Draco wasn’t certain he could take any more of
Lucette’s constant reminders that his only son was
running around with a Potter and a Weasley. He decided it was best to change the subject
before she got it into her head to invite them all to tea.
what is it that happened?”
Lucette’s bright blue were wide with excitement. “Oh! I
was in the third greenhouse, and my Mandrake seeds have taken root!”
good news. The Mandrake Draught was
tricky, and tricky potions were Draco’s specialty, as well as the bulk of their
income. It wasn’t the type of potion
that customers put in advance orders for, but it was the sort of thing one
would want to have ready for when that urgent owl came in. Urgent orders meant higher prices. This was very good news indeed.
think Iowerth Spinks is becoming a bit too dependent
on the Calming Draught,” Lucette asked, changing the
“I know he
is,” said Draco as he tended to a thick orange paste in a small bronze
cauldron. “But there’s not much that can
be done. I told him ages ago that over-consumption
leads to increased anxiety, but it’s quite clear that he ignored me.”
tell his wife?” Lucette asked, but Draco quickly shook
built our reputation on our ability to be discreet. That means that we don’t pass judgment—at
least in their presence—and we don’t get involved.”
must be something we can do for the
poor man.” This was typical of Lucette. She always
wanted to help people, to do good in the world. She was warm—right down to her golden hair
and sun-kissed skin—while Draco was cold.
already done something,” he said. Her
look of surprise made him smile. “I
decreased the strength and didn’t tell him.
It should at least help with all the shaking and stuttering.”
Lucette threw her arms around Draco’s neck and kissed
him. “Every now and again you do
something that proves you aren’t as cold-hearted as you want everyone to
“Oh, but I
am. You see, if dear Iowerth
lands himself in St. Mungo’s, he’ll be taking their potions, and we’ll have lost
ourselves a valuable customer.” He
grinned at her.
“You say that, but I’m on to you, Draco Malfoy.” She kissed
him again and then turned on her heel.
“I’ll be in the third greenhouse preparing the soil for our new
Mandrakes. Then I’ll be out and about
with my morning pruning. Do send Biddle
for me if Scorpius sends anything more about his new
at him and left the Potions Shack through the back door.
closed behind her, and Draco checked his watch.
He had another hour before the wizard from the Dragon Reservation would
there for the burn-healing paste. Draco took
off his work robes and hung them over the counter. With a flick of his wand, the front door
locked and the sign in the window flipped to “Closed.” He strode casually to the back door, where a
quick glance out of the window confirmed that Lucette
was already in the greenhouse and up to her elbows in soil. Draco quickly locked the back door as well
and then ducked into his office.
wasn’t large, but it served its purpose.
This was where he kept up with the accounting and stored all of his
customer’s confidential files. It was
also home to Severus Snape’s personal notes and
papers, which were quite frankly the secret to Draco’s success. To this day he still didn’t know why
Professor Snape had bequeathed these to him, but he
was convinced that his old teacher had been one of the most brilliant potions
masters ever. Not only had Snape modified most common potions to make them better or
stronger, he had also developed a number of experimental potions that Draco
attempted to recreate in his spare time.
So while any idiot could brew up a decent cure for boils, only Draco
knew that three spoonfuls of sugar and a dash of cinnamon made it easier to
swallow without diluting its strength.
He kept Snape’s papers locked up in his office;
only Lucette knew about them, but she knew about
Not everything, he thought.
underneath the floor next to his desk was a secret compartment. He’d installed it years ago when Lucette had taken Scorpius to visit
with her parents for the weekend. At
first he had meant to tell her about it, but something stopped him. It wasn’t that he’d had anything to hide from
her; indeed, until the previous Tuesday he had only used it for storing her
birthday and Christmas presents. Any
other time it sat there unused.
that he had a reason to use it, he wished he didn’t. He knelt beside the hidden compartment and
mumbled the various enchantments needed to unlock it. Draco reached into it, his hand trembling
twice as much as Iowerth’s had earlier, and pulled
out the confidential letter he had assumed was an order for Wolfsbane
letter actually contained, however, turned out to be infinitely more
complicated than any potion.
Malfoy, the letter read,
I know what you did and that you were never
brought to justice for it. It would be
a shame if it came out now. Your wife
and son would miss you if you were sent to Azkaban. Give me what I want and spare yourself the humiliation and jail time. Further instructions to
Accompanying the letter was a
photograph of an opal necklace.
waving it all wrong,” Blair said to Scorpius. In an odd twist of events, she was helping
him with his Charms homework. “Your
circles are too big. Keep them tighter.”
Scorpius did as she said and waved his wand in a smaller
circle, trying hard to keep his movements more controlled. He found Charms oddly frustrating, possibly
because it was one of the few classes where he hadn’t instantly excelled. Professor Wimple was a burly and intimidating
man and was not at all the type of person one would expect to be teaching
Charms. He was head of Hufflepuff House, and true to the whole fairness trait that
supposedly defined the House, he was equally tough on everyone and overloaded
them all with homework.
makes you feel better,” Al said, “I was having a bit of trouble with it as
Scorpius, Al, and Blair were sitting in the courtyard,
enjoying the mild weather while it lasted.
Al was busy getting a head start on his Transfiguration homework, and
Blair was helping Scorpius master the art of making
small circles with his wand while she skimmed Delia Everette: Winter Fashion Preview,
occasionally interrupting the wand waving to point out pictures of her mum
modeling various new robe designs while the boys took turns making gagging
motions when her back was turned.
says men ought to be fashionable, too, you know,” Blair said when Scorpius accidentally rolled his eyes after being shown the
latest dragon-hide footwear. Her bottom
lip stuck out a bit when she said it, and Scorpius
felt a pang of guilt for hurting her feelings.
Rose came along just then, carrying two enormous books.
“Advanced Transfiguration and The Modern Animagus?”
Al read aloud. “Aren’t you getting a
little ahead of yourself? You haven’t
even turned a match into a needle yet.”
said Rose, groaning a bit. She had told Scorpius earlier that her mum had managed it fairly early
on, and he suspected she was hoping to follow in her footsteps much the way
wanted to follow in his father’s. “But
Professor Falco wrote both of these, and my mum said
it was always a good idea to be familiar with a professor’s publications. It lets you know what they’re interested in
and can give you insight on what sort of topics they’re likely to focus on in
assignments and exams.”
Blair, looking up from her magazine, “do you think Professor Falco will teach us how to become an Animagus
like her? I wonder what animal I’d
be. Probably something beautiful, like a
know that female peacocks are brown and grey,” Scorpius
informed her. Clearly, she hadn’t known
that, because her face fell a bit.
matter,” said Blair. “Then I’d be a snow
said Rose, “I doubt she’ll be teaching any of us how to become one. It’s very advanced magic, and if it was
something that could easily be taught to students, there would be far more Animagi now, wouldn’t there? But it’s fascinating magic nonetheless, and
the theory should make for some interesting reading over the weekend.”
figures,” said Al quietly to Scorpius while
Blair—happy to finally have an attentive audience—showed Rose
all the pictures of her mum. “She’s the
only one who didn’t get assigned Transfiguration homework, but she’ll probably
do more reading this weekend than the seventh-years.”
of seventh-years,” said Scorpius, nodding towards a
girl who was walking towards them. Her
long hair was nearly as pale as Scorpius’s, but with
a reddish tone to it that gave it the appearance of being pink. He could see from her badge that she was the
Al. “That’s my cousin, Victoire.”
Scorpius was entranced by her. She seemed to glow in the sunlight. He was certain he had never seen anyone so
beautiful in his life, and he suspected he never would again. He thought the witches in Blair’s fashion
magazine could take a few beauty tips from Victoire. For a moment, he wanted to tell her so, but
he was gripped by fear at the thought of speaking to her, and resigned himself
to gaze at her instead, unaware that his mouth was wide open.
“Scorpius, snap out of it.”
shaking him by the shoulders. The
beautiful Head Girl was gone.
“Wh-what happened,” he asked, thoroughly dazed.
laughing, but Rose looked slightly embarrassed while Blair just seemed annoyed.
the first time you’ve met Victoire?” Rose asked.
Scorpius nodded and wiped at the corner of his mouth to
remove an unfortunate bit of drool.
wasn’t your fault,” she said. “Her
great-grandmother is Veela, and every now and again
it comes out in Victoire. And if you’ve never been exposed to it
over again. “You should have seen your
It was priceless.”
Scorpius’s whole body felt hot. He knew Al was only teasing, but he felt
foolish and horrified by the thought that he’d just embarrassed himself in
front of his friends and the Head Girl and everyone else in the courtyard for
up abruptly. “I’ll see you in
Transfiguration, Scorp. Rose, thanks for the tips on the
matches. Perhaps now I’ll be able to get
mine to go all silvery too.” She walked
off, though without her usual bounce.
“Ugh,” Scorpius groaned, only just registering what she’d
said. “We have Transfiguration with
Zephaniah Smith. He just sits there and
uses up what little brain power he actually has trying to come up with clever
insults. He said something about Blair’s
hair, though, so she jinxed his book like she did mine. I think he suspects it was me, though,
because he gave me a right nasty look after class. Not that he has to try very hard to look
wrinkled her nose. “Scorpius,
just ignore him. He only wants you to
get all worked up so that you’ll do something rash and end up losing points for
your House. You shouldn’t give him the
satisfaction. He’s not worth it.”
bad we can’t duel him,” said Al, who had finally recovered from his earlier fits of laughter. “That’d shut him up, I expect.”
looked uneasy. “Al, just because your
dad heads up the Aurors doesn’t make you a brilliant
duelist. Besides, your mum would murder
you if you went around challenging people to duels. I know Smith’s a giant prat,
but both of you just need to ignore him.”
She stood, picking up her oversized library books. “Now come on, it’s nearly time for class.”
of them made their way back into the castle.
Rose was giving Scorpius last-minute pointers
for his upcoming Transfiguration lesson, which she and Al had already been
through. They were about to part ways
when Al stopped suddenly.
said to Scorpius, “I was so busy laughing at you
earlier that I forgot to invite you to tea on Saturday.”
“Right. With Professor Longbottom and his wife. They’re old family friends. You can meet the whole Weasley
clan—well, those of us at Hogwarts that is.
That’s why Victoire came looking for us in the
courtyard, to remind us.”
do come, Scorpius,” Rose pleaded with him. “I’d love for you to meet all of us. And you’d have loads to talk about with
quite like Professor Longbottom, and he was curious
about what big families were like. But
he wasn’t keen on humiliating himself in front of Victoire
again and said as much to
different when it’s just us,” Rose assured him.
“It won’t be like today, I promise.”
Scorpius hesitated, but finally agreed.
said Al, smiling. “See you after class,
then.” Al and Rose headed down to the
dungeons for their Potions lesson.
Scorpius slipped into the sea of students making their way
to class. When he reached the
Transfiguration classroom, he was confused to find the door closed and his
Housemates waiting outside.
students in there,” Zanzibar Baddock said in response
to Scorpius’s puzzled look. “They work through lunch some days.”
get your homework ready,” said Xerxes. “Artemisia
Lynch told me that Professor Falco collects it as we
Scorpius dutifully removed his assignment from his bag. “Thanks, mate.”
the door opened and a small number of seventh-year students filed out. One of them was Adeline Lynch, who stopped as
soon as she saw Scorpius.
“Ah, Malfoy, just the man I wanted to see. We want to try you out for reserve Seeker
this next week, on Friday. Meet me in
the Entrance Hall after your last class.
We’ll see if you’ve got what it takes, yeah?”
Scorpius nodded vigorously as his classmates began filing
into the classroom. He turned to join
them when he was greeted by an unfriendly face.
“You? Try out for Quidditch?” It was
Zephaniah Smith, flanked by his two cronies.
“Now that I’ve got to see. Dad says that when he was at school, Slytherin always fell just short of the Cup. I guess their Seeker just wasn’t much of an
asset. Try not to fall off your
broom. Actually, please do. No one would miss you.” Zephaniah sniggered and pushed past Scorpius, causing him to drop his homework.
him,” said Adeline, picking up his parchment and handing it to him. “Adrian’s captain of the Hufflepuff
team, and if I know my brother, that kid’s got a better chance of getting
Professor Wimple to tap dance than he does of playing Quidditch
while Adrian’s in charge. See you next
Scorpius hurried into the classroom, handed over his
homework to Professor Falco’s waiting grasp, and
hurried to take his seat next to Blair, who hardly acknowledged him. He was busy unpacking his book, parchment and
ink when he heard his name called.
“Mr. Malfoy, please see me at my desk this instant,” Professor Falco, while much kinder than Wimple, was still not the
type of teacher one wants to cross, and the tone of her voice sent chills down Scorpius’s spine. He
some sort of joke?” she asked sternly when he was standing in front of her.
pointing to his assignment, only it didn’t look anything like what he’d worked
on except that his name was still written at the top in his handwriting. The rest looked as if someone with advanced
arthritis had attempted to scribble runes all over the parchment.
“I…I…” Scorpius stammered, not knowing what to say.
you think Transfiguration homework beneath you?”
“No, Professor. I…I don’t know how that happened, I swear.”
could tell she didn’t believe him at all.
“I will not tolerate such pranks, Mr. Malfoy. You will serve detention in addition to
redoing the assignment and I will be taking ten points from Slytherin. Now please, return to your seat without
Scorpius turned around slowly, his mind reeling. He had written the essay. How could it have gone all jumbled like
that? His first thought was of Blair,
who liked to play jokes on him, but even she wouldn’t do anything this
serious. She would never want to see him
And then he
remembered Rose’s words. He only wants
you to get all worked up so that you’ll do something rash and end up losing
points for your House. He knew
exactly who would want to see him in trouble.
enough, when he looked up he saw Zephaniah Smith in the back of the classroom,