The Prince and the Slave
Hermione looked curiously at the Prince of Gryffindor. He bore an expression that looked as if he had seen a ghost and he was holding the ring in a white knuckled grip. She decided to answer his question. She was going to have to anyway. “His name is Draco. Draco Malfoy.”
Harry’s jaw dropped open. It couldn’t be possible. There was no way. But he remembered the tattoo on Draco’s back. A tattoo that was the exact replica of the crest on the ring. Harry looked to his left and saw Ron’s shocked face. He showed the crest on the ring to Ron.
Ron summed it up in two words. “Bloody Hell!”
James looked at his son. It took a moment for the name Draco to make it through his mind. Then he remembered the name of his son’s slave. He voiced out his opinion. “Surely not?”
Harry looked up at his father. He showed the crest to his father. “Father, he has the same mark on the back of his shoulder.” He watched his fathers face go through a variety of emotions the main one be shock.
Hermione sat there and watched them through this whole ordeal. When she heard Harry say that someone had this tattoo on his shoulder her interest was immediately peaked. Only Slytherin Royal family members had such a mark. Could it have been possible that Draco had made it to the Gryffindor court? She got her heartbeat under control and voiced the question she had to know the answer to. “Who are you talking about? Who has this mark on their shoulder?”
Harry turned to the lady sitting across from him. “Not long ago, I bought a slave named Draco. He has this exact mark on the back of his shoulder.”
Hermione jumped to her feet. Anger coursed through her veins. “IS THIS HOW YOU TREAT THE PRINCE OF ANOTHER NATION?”
Harry stood and held up his hands to try and calm her down. “We didn’t know. He never told us. Honestly, if we knew he was a Prince we would have-” Harry cut himself off at a realization. “We would have sent him back. No wonder he never told us. You said he ran away, right? He would not have wanted to go back. But what could be worse then being a slave?”
Hermione thought on this a moment. She was very protective of Draco. Draco may have been her master, but in reality, they were both friends. She looked at everyone’s questioning gaze. She sighed and decided to give a little more information. “Ok, what I am about to tell you never leaves this room. Is that agreed on?”
At everyone’s nod, she continued. “Draco was never allowed out side a certain set of rooms. I was his only contact to the outside world. I have been Draco’s servant since he was six. His father would not allow any males around him, which is why they got me to be his servant. The only people beside me to see Draco were his parents and the physician. He was very lonely. His mother educated him in everything. His father, though he visited, really wasn’t around much. But one day I was bringing him dinner and I found him in his room in hysterics. He kept mumbling something about him sneaking out and hearing something he was supposed to.”
“Draco liked to sneak out and explore. I even helped him at times. I tried to find out what happened, but he would not tell me. He pleaded with me for over four hours to help him run away. I eventually helped him.”
Harry listened to all this with a heavy heart. It was hard to believe that someone could live such a life of seclusion. It was no wonder he always woke with Draco cuddled into him. Draco was practically starved for affection. Then Harry remembered this morning. What had he done? He had pushed Draco away. How could he have been so stupid? He was kept from berating himself any further by his father’s voice.
James analyzed the situation. It was obvious that if they were to find out the entire truth they would need Draco here to tell them. He turned his attention onto his son. “Harry, why don’t you go and fetch Draco for us? I think it best that he was here.”
Hermione immediately stood and addressed the king. “May I go too? Please.”
James nodded at her. “Very well. Ron, why don’t you go as well.” He watched as the three walked out of the room.
Harry walked through the hall on the way to his room. He glanced to his side and saw that Hermione was following him. He would have struck up a conversation, but his mind was focused too much on something, or should he say someone, else. He was thinking back over the time Draco had spent with them. Draco, even though he hadn’t known him that long, was now a constant in his life. He didn’t want to lose him, but Draco was a Prince, soon to be King. With his parents dead, that made him next-in-line to the throne. He stopped outside his bedroom door and looked at Hermione. “This is my room.”
Hermione followed the Prince down the hall. Her own thoughts were also on Draco. It had only been a few weeks since she had last seen Draco, but it felt like an eternity. She had been around Draco every day for years. She had missed him. She looked up and noticed that they had stopped outside a door. She heard Harry say that this was his room and watched as he opened the door.
Her eyes immediately went around the room before stopping on the bed. There she could make out a lump on the far side of the bed curled into a ball. She immediately noticed the pale hair on the figure and knew that it was Draco. She smiled and ran towards the bed. “Draco!”
Draco was lying on the bed. He heard the door start to open and immediately faced away from the door and curled upon himself. He knew that he could not tell Harry the truth. If he did, they would send him back. He would rather die then live the life that was planned for him. He was just about to close his eyes to feign sleep when he heard his name yelled. He knew that voice. It couldn’t be. He turned his head around and looked at the figure standing on the other side of the bed from him. A smile broke across his face. “Granger!”
Hermione was elated when it turned out to be Draco. She ran around to the other side of the bed and enveloped Draco into a hug. It was then that she heard a hiss of pain escape him. She pulled herself away from Draco and got her first really good look at him. She gasped upon seeing his face. “My god Draco, what the hell happened to you?”
Draco self consciously brought his hand up to block the bruise on the side of his face. “I got beat up last night.”
Hermione couldn’t believe that someone had done this to Draco. She reached out and moved Draco’s hand away from the bruise, she leaned down to get a good look. That was when she noticed the collar around Draco’s neck. She put her hands on it. “What’s this?” She had slid her hand around to the back of the collar and was met by a string of leather. She pulled the leather up to the front her. She followed one end of it to the collar around Draco’s neck and then followed the other end to the bedpost.
Hermione then remembered that Draco had said he had gotten beat up last night. She started to see red again. She dropped the leash and turned around to face Harry and Ron. They had followed her around the bed when she had gone to Draco. She looked directly into Harry’s eyes. “HOW COULD YOU, YOU BASTARD.” Only seconds later the rooms was filled with the sound of a loud smack.
Harry watched as Hermione ran around the bed to embrace Draco. He and Ron followed her previous path and took a position behind her. He watched as Draco hissed out in pain and Hermione examined his face. He then noticed that she had spotted the collar. A sense of dread started to fill him when she started to examine the leash. It turned out to be well-founded when she all of a sudden turned and yelled at him. The next moments went so fast he didn’t know what to think. He heard a smacking sound coming from close by. It took a moment before his jaw bristled in pain. He brought his hand up to touch his face. No one had ever hit him before. He saw that she was raising her hand again, but she didn’t get far. Before she was halfway to hitting him again, Ron had her hand in a vice grip.
Ron saw that Hermione was about to hit Harry again and quickly brought his hand up to grab her hand. “WHAT THE HELL DO YOU THINK YOU ARE DOING?” He was pissed as hell right now. He should have kept her from hitting him the first time.
Hermione for her part tried to struggle and yank free of his grasp but she was unable to. She looked up at Ron and with her other hand gestured towards Draco. “LOOK WHAT THIS BASTARD DID TO HIM!”
All three of them were broke out of their tirade by a small voice coming from the bed. “Harry did not do this, Granger.” Draco then stood up from the bed and moved Hermione aside. Ron had let her go when Draco had spoken. Draco stepped up in front of Harry. He ran his hand over the bruised flesh. “I am sorry about that.”
Harry couldn’t believe that Draco was being so kind to him. After all that he had done to him in the past twenty four hours. He looked into Draco’s eyes. “It’s alright, Draco. I would have acted the same way if I had been in her position.”
Draco nodded his head, before turning around and facing away from all three of him. He bowed his head. “I guess you know, now.”
Harry took a step forward. “Yes, we know you are a Prince, Draco.” Harry waited to see what Draco’s reaction would be.
A/N: Please review. You people are going to kill me through the next few chapters with all the cliffhangers.
Now for the dreaded teaser:
A few tears made there way down Draco’s checks and Harry used his thumbs to wipe them away. Draco looked at him again. “This has all happened because of me. If I hadn’t run, my parents would still be alive.” He let out a sob. “Oh god, I killed them.”
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