Ron Weasley And The Dragons
Rains of frogs. Rivers running red. Harry jogs up the courtyard to the manor, still clutching his book under his armpit. He's hardly in the door when Lucius grabs him by the back of his shirt and swings him round.
"Where the hell is Draco?"
"I don't bloody know?" Harry yells back.
"Give me that bloody book." Lucius jerks the photo album from under Harry's arm before Harry can resist, and hunkers down on the floor on the floor! thinks Harry and begins to rifle through the pages. Harry squats beside him, barely capable of disguising his surprise at Lucius' behaviour.
"There's a lot of funny stuff going on," Harry says. "Weird, ominous stuff. People think Voldemort's coming back."
"Of course he's bloody coming back! That's what I told you. That's why I need Draco. We have to get into the circle. It's the End Game, it's starting already."
"The End Game. The End Times. Voldemort isn't going to try and rule the world this time. He's going to try and bloody destroy it. All or fucking nothing. By the gods "
Images of Draco spin past. Draco at six, wearing a dress and sulking. Draco playing with a small pet dragon. Draco harrassing the house elves. Draco giving Ron Weasley oral sex. Draco dressed up in his best robes. Draco and
Lucius flips back a few pages.
"Oh my gods," says Harry.
"Good grief," says Lucius.
"The lying bastard," says Harry. "When the hell was that snap taken? I swear, I'm going to "
Lucius ignores him. He touches his wand to the surface of the page, where it makes small, co-centric ripples on the paper, like a stone cast into the still surface of a lake. Lucius' brow knots, and Harry represses his anger and watches. Lucius is sweating, his hands are shaking, and he's muttering something under his breath.
Harry, thinking it's a spell, leans closer to hear the words.
Lucius is muttering, "Fuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuckfuck."
"Er, Lucius? Sir?"
"He's on a different bloody plane," Lucius howls, tossing the book away from him across the floor. "I can't reach him there. I can't of all the times he has to go on holiday, it has to be "
But Lucius has his hands over his head now, and is rocking backwards and forwards in the middle of the floor. Harry just watches he doesn't know what to do. It's embarrassing, to see such weakness in someone so strong.
Harry looks up. Narcissa is standing in the doorway, beckoning him with a finger. Happy to be released of the discomfort of watching the patriarch of the Malfoy family have a nervous breakdown in the middle of the hall, Harry rises, and goes to her.
"The End Game, Potter," says Narcissa. "It's what Voldemort promised, a long long time ago. The basic principle of the affair was simple. If Voldemort couldn't have the world, no one else could, either. He planned to destroy everything. I don't think he has the power to do it I don't think any of the Death Eaters believed he could but Lucius seems to think he can now."
"And these signs?"
"All the signs of the beginning of the Game," says Narcissa. "Rivers of blood. Rains of strange animals. Voldemort was quite a strange little man. Such things appealed to him."
"What are we going to do?" Harry asks. He feels cold, here, with Narcissa. The woman doesn't seem even faintly afraid of the things she speaks of; there's a dead look in her grey eyes, perhaps resignation. Perhaps something else. Harry doesn't know.
"I was considering joining the Death Eaters again," Narcissa admits. "But Lucius seems to think they'll be destroyed along with everyone else, and I have to say I think he's right on that account. If Voldemort destroys the world, he'll do it all or nothing, as Lucius likes to say. When it happens, all we can do is sit inside the circle Lucius has made. It's a protection circle it'll keep us safe until the very end. And then, I don't know. I think Lucius had a plan to destroy him in the beginning. But now well. You've seen him. He's worried to death about Draco."
"Can't we fight him?"
"I don't know," says Narcissa. "Not us, I don't think. Voldemort said he'd leave the challenge up to four wizards or witches, to save the day. His four apocalyptic horsemen have you read the Muggle legends?"
"Four horsemen, who bring about the end. Or four wizards. Famine, Pestilence, War and Death." Narcissa sighs. "I think Lucius is going to go mad," she says, as an afterthought. "He doesn't want to die, now that we've a grandchild on the way, and Draco's gone. It's Draco he's most worried about."
Harry stares at her. "How can you just stand here and do nothing?" he asks. "I mean can't you go and challenge Voldemort? Anything?"
"I'm afraid not. After we heard about the first signs, we doubted it. But we received a letter this morning inviting us to join Voldemort's troups. We politely declined. Not that it matters, anyway. If he's strong enough to turn the Thames to blood on his own, he's strong enough to do a whole lot worse." Narcissa reaches across the table for a bottle of liquor. "We might have a couple of days yet," she says. "You'd better set your affairs in order, Potter."
"How long will the protection of the circle last?" Harry asks.
"We don't know," says Narcissa.
"Holy crap. What do you know?" Harry spits out.
"I know that this is the most expensive wine in the world," says Narcissa, waving her bottle at him. "And I know also that after one drinks it for three consecutive hours, it makes one feel just drunk enough not to give a damn about the end of the world."
Ron has a dragon tail in his nose. He snorts, and swipes out at it blindly. Beside him, Draco snuffles, and yawns. He smells like sex a warm, homely smell. Ron feels slightly embarrassed, but grateful at the same time. He's been aware for a while in a sort of indecisive way that he and Draco have been steadily working themselves up to this point. Now that it's over, he's relieved, really. No more pressure. Back to good old Ron the Rogue.
Shit happens. So does sex, apparently. Best to take it all in one's stride.
Nice job, last night. No pun intended, says Sally. All sporting fit for today, are you?
Oh, for goodness sake..
Up you get. We've fixed breakfast for you.
Ron crawls out of bed and struggles into his clothes. He wants a shower now, badly, but guesses the dragons probably don't have running water on tap. Draco curls into the warm space Ron's left in the bed, and whines. Ron hurls Draco's clothes at the man's blonde head.
"Get up, you git."
"I am up. Why aren't you down?" Draco mutters.
"You are such a bastard in the mornings," Draco complains, pulling his shirt about his shoulders.
"So don't wake up," says Ron. And adds, "Ever."
"One night of bliss, and this is the thanks I get." Draco squeezes into his trousuers. "Toss me my shoes, would you?"
Ron obliges, with rather more gusto than is necessary. Draco dives back under the covers, laughing.
We've brought supplies. Draco will ride on John and you'll be on me, Ron. Ralph is going to lead the way, and Cindy'll be carrying everything else. We're not altogether sure what to expect, so do be ready for anything.
"Without my wand. Sure," says Ron, shooting a glare in Draco's direction. Draco whistles, and looks the other way.
Ready? Sally asks.
"Uhuh. Right. I'm all for being a hero," says Ron. Sally extends a blue-clawed foot, and Ron scales her arm, hoisting himself up easily onto her broad shoulders. John, who is a flatter sort of dragon, only has to lower himself to the ground, and Draco can walk straight up his side onto his back.
"Hurrah for us," says Draco, agreeably. He's lost his fear of dragons, Ron notices, belatedly; then again, having long discussions about vampire sitcoms to your private fear does tend to reduce the horror a little.
At the front of the cavern, the white dragon, Ralph, perches, brooding. He watches as Ron and Draco climb onto the backs of the other dragons, then grunts out something, and flies off.
"Cheery bugger, ain't he?" Ron says to Sally, as they step off the ledge. They fall a short distance, before Sally's wings unfold, and they're flapping off in pursuit of the white dragon. "What's up his snout?"
Ralph's always like that. He's actually something of a new member to our group. Just arrived three weeks ago, which is why we're sort of nervous about him. He says he was there at Dragon Rock, though I can't remember seeing him. He knew our names, though. He said the fire turned his scales white, and his eyes red. I guess that would make anyone a little glum.
"I'll bet. So has he told you where we're heading?"
He says it's a mountain it's part of the legend, actually. You two have to go through a series of tests, and then drop the medallion into something. He wasn't very specific. He seemed to think we'd know all about it, and well, we did want to look knowledgeable infront of him. Sally sounds somewhat ashamed of herself. I do hope it won't be too dangerous. I wouldn't like to lose you, Ron. I think I've become rather fond of you, to be honest.
Ron grins, and leans against her neck. "I'm rather fond of you too," he admits. "Wish you were human. We could go round the bars together. It'd be a hoot."
I wish you were a dragon. We could go kill humans together. It'd be a hoot.
"Um," says Ron.
Just kidding. I mean, kill sheep.
"Right," says Ron, unconvinced.
As if I'd kill people. Really. They're far too interesting.
"You think?" Ron squints across at Draco, who's relaxing on John's back. "All they talk about is sex and alcohol and well television programs."
But in an interesting way. I mean, even human sex is fascinating to me. We don't do it like that at all. It's more of a -
"Yes, thankyou," says Ron quickly. "I've seen Black Feathertails mating. It's not pretty."
"Sorry. But it just doesn't do it for me. We're two different species, after all. It'd never work out between us. You'd be all scaley and whacking me with your tail, and then swiping my throat off when I didn't hell. Wait." Ron rearranges his thoughts. "Can you forget I said all of that?" he asks, finally.
Sure thing, sweet heart. Sally laughs, a gruff, throaty sound half-way between a belch and a snigger.
Return to Archive | sequel | previous