Spells Unspoken


Story Summary:
Draco jumped up, yanked out his wand and thrust it, point upwards, in Lucius' face. 'I can still feel them, Father,' he whispered, 'all those writhing, stinking spells!' Lucius curled his lips. 'Then why do you fight them?'

Chapter 01


'A word, Father.'

'Draco!' Lucius Malfoy smiled at his son. Beside him, young Scorpius' eyes lit up in surprise. 'Dad!'

'Hello love.' Draco smiled at his boy, but then his eyes darted to the child's right hand. 'What is that?'

'Grandfather's wand...'

'Expelliarmus!' The force of the spell slammed the little boy against the leather sofa. Lucius saw his wand crashing against a bookcase.

'What on earth -'

'Stay out of this!' Draco hissed. Then he strode over to his son. 'What did I say about wands?' he snarled.

'Not till I'm eleven,' the boy said, rather tearfully.


'Let's all just calm down, shall we?' Lucius stood up and walked over to his son, who was visibly shaking. 'My wand, Draco,' he said. Draco snapped his fingers at a House Elf, who picked up the wand and placed it, bowing, into Lucius' hand. 'Fetch the Mistress,' Lucius told it quickly. Then he pulled Draco aside. 'What are you doing?!'

'Teaching!' Draco spat. At that moment, Narcissa came in. After one look, she strode over to Scorpius and took him by the hand. The boy was really crying now.

'Come with me, darling. They're just being silly,' she whispered, quickly glancing to Lucius.

He nodded. I've got this, dear.

She frowned. You better have. Then she quickly led her grandson out of the room.

Lucius let go of his son. 'Sit down,' he said.

'I don't want you to - '

'I said sit!' Instinctively, Lucius reached for his wand, but Draco had drawn his faster.

'I wouldn't try that, Father,' he whispered.

Lucius took a deep breath. 'You wanted to talk. So sit down and talk.'

Draco stared at him for one more moment, but then he sat down - in his leather armchair, Lucius thought ruefully. But the boy was unstable, so he gritted his teeth. 'Whiskey?'

'A double,' Draco said. He started drumming his fingers against the armrest.

Lucius raised his eyebrows. The boy was a walking bundle of nerves on the best of days, but this? Surely his job at Gringotts couldn't be that taxing?

Then again, how would he know? They hardly ever saw each other, and when Draco did visit, it was Astoria who did most of the talking. They were a long way from the days when they'd sit together on this sofa, big tomes of heraldry and history open on the long wooden table in front of them. He missed that sometimes, he really did. He'd thought he could start again with Scorpius, but his grandson was hardly interested in the portraits on the wall or the emblems on the chalices that were displayed on the many bookshelves. He was much more taken by the daggers that Lucius kept behind the books. If Lucius could get him to sit still at all. The only reason they'd even been in here was because Scorpius was hungry after flying all afternoon. Even while stuffing himself with cupcakes he kept glancing out of the high windows behind them, hoping to have one more go before sundown. Lucius had never thought he'd miss Draco's stillness, but that was before he'd met his grandson.

Then again, here his son sat, quiet as ever - though not calm. Maybe some whiskey really would relax him. Lucius sat down in the armchair on the right end of the table and flicked his wand at the drinks cabinet next to the bookcase on his left.

As he summoned a crystal decanter and two glasses, Draco kept following his every movement. He didn't stop when Lucius pulled out the stopper and poured his son's glass. 'Something wrong?' Lucius enquired finally after Draco had summoned his glass without breaking eye contact once.

'How could you give that to him!' Draco burst out, nodding at the wand.

'This?' Lucius said, jerking his wand in surprise. He was so baffled he almost smashed the bottle.

'That,' Draco said.

Lucius felt anger rising in his throat. 'You don't want your son to have your father's wand,' he repeated deliberately. 'Tell me... is this your only insult or will there be more?'

'I saw what you did with it,' Draco said.

'I did nothing!' Lucius said, even more confused.

'Not just now,' Draco sighed irritably.

'Indeed.' Lucius put down the decanter, picked up his glass and drained it. Then he took his wand and handed it to his son. 'This particular wand is purer than a unicorn foal.'

'I doubt that,' Draco answered, not taking it. 'It knows exactly what you're capable of.'

Lucius raised his eybrows. 'Yours knows the same about you.'

'I know,' Draco said curtly. 'That's why he's not touching that, either.'

'You're being ridiculous,' Lucius sneered. 'Do you really mean to tell me that you are sending your son to Hogwarts without him ever having touched a wand?'

'He can use Astoria's wand to practice,' Draco said.

Lucius sighed. 'You know how much I respect your wife, but she is not a Malfoy. Besides, she is a woman!'

'I've used Mother's wand,' Draco said coolly.

Go on, rub it in, Lucius thought, but he controlled himself. 'That was an exceptional situation,' he said.

Draco shrugged. Lucius rolled his eyes. Everything about Draco's demeanour was as approachable as a stone vault. Time to change tactics.

'You're making a mistake,' he said at long last. 'The combined power and legacy of the Malfoy family is imbedded in our wands. Scorpius should learn to feel that. Yours even has the Black heritage...'

'Yes, of course, I forgot,' Draco sneered. 'Aunt Bellatrix was such a marvellous example!'

'She was a formidable witch!' Lucius snapped.

'She was a raving lunatic!'

'That, too,' Lucius conceded. Then he looked at Draco, his gaze boring into his son's. 'And you wish to tell me that you judge me no better.'

Draco stared back. 'I have my son to think of.'

A heavy silence hung between them. Then Lucius took a deep breath. 'What makes you think I do not care for his welfare?' he demanded.

'He's been having nightmares,' Draco stated.

Lucius snorted. 'All children have nightmares.'

'He's been dreaming of battles. And he is asking me all kinds of questions about duelling.'

'As he should,' Lucius said. 'He should know how to defend himself.'

Draco jerked his head. 'Really?' he said. 'By casting sectumsempra?'

Lucius froze for a moment. Then he shrugged. 'Well, I always did admire Snape's inventiveness.'

'I suffered that, Father! You're not telling him about it!'

Ah, was that what this was? How like Draco to still be afraid of a little Dark magic!

'Will you stop being squeamish,' Lucius said. 'There is life beyond your safe and closeted home. We'd be doing your Scorpius a disservice by not telling him about it.'

Draco crossed his arms. 'He is nine years old.'

'And he knows a good lot less than you did at that age.' Lucius leant back in his chair. 'Honestly, if you don't start tutoring him more extensively, he'll be the laughing stock of Slytherin.'

Draco tilted his head back. 'He'll do fine in Slytherin without knowing how to maim someone for life.'

'Merlin, Draco, you know that's not true.'

His son stared at him. 'I don't believe you. I just don't believe you!' He stood up. 'I have spent the last fifteen years without ever casting so much as a body bind curse and I've done brilliantly!'

Lucius gave him a small nod. 'That was very prudent of you,' he said. 'But most people never underestimated what you could do if you chose to. Don't tell me that hasn't helped.'

Draco looked away.

'You see, son,' Lucius smiled. 'These spells will give your son power. Whether he chooses to cast them or not.'

Draco turned back to him. 'You've never taught me any spell you did not intend me to use.'

'True.' Lucius smiled.

Draco narrowed his eyes. 'So you wanted me to enslave, torture and kill people one day.'

'If need be,' Lucius said matter-of-factly. When he saw his son's face, he added: 'Everyone desires to do these things, Draco. Everyone. Why would I not give you the tools you needed?'

'I never desired to do these things!' Draco spat.

'You're lying,' Lucius said. 'At school, you would have been quite happy to do all of them.'

'Childish games,' Draco said dismissively. 'I never intended to kill anyone.' He swallowed. 'I couldn't even do it for your sake.'

Lucius winced. 'That should never have happened - '

'But it has!' Draco shouted. There were tears in his eyes. 'And the only thing your spells did was make me into an instrument! Something the Dark Lord could use to destroy people!'

'If you hadn't worked with him he would have killed you!' Lucius yelled, in spite of himself.

'No, he wouldn't have,' Draco said. He'd started pacing, his movements fast and jittery. 'He would have tortured me and made you watch.'

Lucius sneered. 'Would you have preferred that?'

'I don't know,' Draco said. 'I really don't.' He slowly walked back to the armchair, sat down and took a sip of whiskey. Then he said, almost absentmindedly: 'Do you know what it is like, torturing twenty people in a row, one of them you?'

Lucius scowled at the memory, but then he composed himself. 'You weren't very good, son.'

Draco's expression froze. 'They made me practice,' he said, emphasising every word. Then turned his head away. 'The screaming...'

Lucius stared at his son's face. He remembered that expression too well: it was the same look Draco had worn on his eighteenth birthday, when Lucius had found him in his bedchambers, gnawing at his knuckles until nothing remained but a raw, bloody pulp. But he had recovered, hadn't he? He'd long snapped out of it. He had no right to still look so desperately forlorn!

'Draco, listen,' Lucius said. 'This was more than fifteen years ago. Why would you dwell on it?'

'I don't dwell on it,' Draco said. 'It dwells on me.'

Lucius sighed. 'Don't be theatrical, Draco, it doesn't suit you.'

Draco didn't seem to have heard him. 'I wonder, sometimes,' he mused. 'The things I could do... To Astoria. To Scorpius, even.'

Lucius shifted uncomfortably. 'Then don't,' he offered.

Draco shrugged. 'They slip out sometimes, you know.' He let out a sick little giggle. 'After last time, Astoria stopped me degnoming our garden.'

'Rightly so,' Lucius said. 'I didn't give you Tibby for nothing.'

Draco turned to him. 'Is that all you care about? Proper housekeeping?'

Lucius blinked. 'Whatever do you mean?'

'Do you think that's all we need to be normal again?'

'Yes,' Lucius said. 'That's how these things work.'

'The hell they do!' Draco spat. He jumped up once more, yanked out his wand and thrust it, point upwards, in Lucius' face. 'I can still feel them, Father,' he whispered, 'all those writhing, stinking spells!'

Lucius curled his lips. 'Then why do you fight them?'

Draco sucked in a breath. 'What...?'

Lucius' smile grew wider. 'This is power, Draco. Unpleasant, yes, but great power!' He stood up. 'Don't you see - you can do anything you wish now! You have magic no Auror would use!'

Draco only shook his head in response, repeatedly jerking it from side to side.

'Of course you can!' Lucius beamed. He felt an almost uncontrollable urge to embrace his son, but Draco had moved away from him, turning strangely rigid. 'You'll make us great again...'

Draco thrust up a hand. He wore a mixture of shock and contempt on his face, as if asked to bow down to a blood traitor. He took a very long time to speak.

'I used to think it was the war,' he said finally. 'All those 'lessons', all those curses.' He shook his head. 'You just liked it.'

'Liked it?' Lucius straigthened his back. 'I did what was necessary. If you can't handle that-' He stopped when Draco raised his wand again.

'Stay away from my son,' he said. 'I mean it.'

Finally, here it was - the backbone, the resolve, the sheer might Lucius had always tried, and failed, to install. It was strangely disconcerting to see it all directed at himself. He nodded slightly. 'You needn't worry. I shan't try to teach your son. That is your job.'

Draco looked taken aback. In the second he needed to phrase his reply, they heard strange noises outside of the door. Someone was yelling: 'Oooooh- bubbles!' As one, they turned and sped towards the hallway. Draco pulled open the door and ran through, but suddenly stopped. From the doorway Lucius saw his wife and grandson, both delightedly watching swirls of soap bursting out of Narcissa's wand. That's Cissa all over, Lucius thought. She was still unwilling to accept that her only grandchild was a nine year old boy instead of the four year old girl she'd always wanted.

Still, Scorpius was excited. 'Let me, Grandmama!' Before she had time to react, he pulled the wand from her hand and sent the soap shooting in all directions. Draco reacted fast as lightening.

'Finite incantatem!'

All bubbles popped simultaneously, leaving an uncomfortable silence. Draco lowered his wand as he looked at his son, who'd gone from grinning to biting his lip. Narcissa took her wand back and put her hand on the boy's shoulder.

'Now, son...' Lucius said softly as his son started to walk toward Scorpius. Yet when he saw Narcissa's slight smile, he noticed something was different. Draco was grinning. In fact, he was positively beaming.

'Can you do that again?'

With a quick look at Narcissa, Scorpius took the wand again. He stretched out his arm, planted his feet on the ground and screwed his face up in concentration, but only managed some weak splutters. Draco knelt beside his son, took his arm and guided his movements. The result was somewhat better, but still rather feeble. Scorpius was getting frustrated. 'Can I have your wand, Dad?' he asked suddenly.

Draco pulled back. 'No,' he said. He took Narcissa's wand and stood up. 'Go get your cloak.'

But the boy had straightened up, too.

'I want to try,' Scorpius insisted.

Lucius marvelled at the boy's nerve. Had his son ever been like that? He and Draco seemed to be fighting some internal battle. Finally, Draco looked to Narcissa. 'Mother, would you watch?' She took her wand from him with an ironic smile. Lucius too remembered the hours she had spent watching him practice, ready to disarm when necessary. Nevertheless, Draco's hand was shaking when he gave Scorpius his wand.

'Be very careful,' he said to his boy, 'don't point at anyone, keep your grip loose...'

But Scorpius didn't seem to need any further instruction. In one fluent movement, he made a fountain of stars shoot out of the wand.

At first, everyone just stared. Then Scorpius cried: 'I did it!'

Narcissa cheered and Draco quickly took his wand back before sweeping his son up and embracing him tightly. 'Your first spell!' he beamed. 'You clever wizard you!'

Lucius felt his chest swelling, too, as he remembered his joy at the first spell Draco had cast - a rather botched attempt to Stun a House Elf. He smiled broadly at his grandson, who grinned at him and said: 'I really did it, Grandpapa!'

'Good, Scorpius!' he beamed. 'Next time, try -'

But Draco put his son down and stepped in front of him. 'Your cloak, Scorpius,' he said hoarsely.

Scorpius stepped away from him. 'But I haven't said goodbye!'

Draco shot him a look he normally used to terrify House Elves.

'I said go!'

The boy ran out. Narcissa seemed torn between following her grandson and finding ways to diffuse the situation. 'Boys! There's really no need-'

But Draco ignored her. 'I swear,' he said to Lucius, 'if you teach my son so much as a stinging jinx, I'll skin you alive.'

'You dare-' Lucius started, but stopped as Draco approached him, his wand drawn and his hand perfectly still.

'I still know how,' Draco whispered. With that, he made a curt bow to his mother, turned around and swept out of the Manor.

He left his parents in stunned silence. 'What the hell?' Narcissa finally snapped at Lucius before running after her son.

Lucius didn't reply. He knew the answer, and felt frozen to the bone.

Draco was a Malfoy now.