A Strange Engagement

A Too Stellar Performance

A/N- Now, Hermione will only be called Daphne in the presence of Draco's grandparents. Otherwise, she will be referred to as Hermione.

He jumped out of bed and since the room was still dark, immediately stubbed his toe on one of the legs of his night table. Cursing, he got some light in the room and walked over to the robe closet.

Mentally going over every robe he owned, he picked out the green one again. It never failed to impress anyone. After that, he went through his hair quick with a brush and then ran down the stairs, skidding to a stop in front of everyone who was already waiting for him in the sitting room.

The first thing he saw was the look on his grandmother's face as she shot Narcissa a dirty look.

"Really, is that how you've taught the boy to enter a room and not even tell his grandparents hello?"

Narcissa shook her head. "No," she said through clenched teeth. "Draco hasn't been well and he just woke up. That's why he was late."

His grandmother surveyed him for a moment. Then, she sat back gracefully.

"Well, at least you'll be marrying someone who'll make up for all your shortcomings! Your father has been telling me about Daphne and I must say I am very pleased about the girl you got yourself engaged to!"

Then his grandfather broke in.

"How did the two of you meet?"

And before Draco could get a word in edgewise, Daphne opened her mouth.

"I guess I'm grateful to him really. We started dating after my terrible breakup with Apollo Windham, you know, the quidditch player?

"Well, after it happened, I was so heartbroken that I ran out of the arena crying my eyes out. Draco came up to me and we started talking and realized we had a lot in common. We went out for butterbeers and a few months later we became engaged!"

His grandmother was smiling openly. "Well, that is quite a story. My grandson engaged to the former girlfriend of a quidditch player! Now, tell me: What is your house at Hogwarts?"

After that question, tense silence filled the room. They hadn't made plans about how to answer it.

But when Daphne answered, it was with a calm that surprised them all.

"Well, actually, I didn't go to Hogwarts. My mother was a former teacher at a magic school in America and she tutored me at home. She had been a Slytherin alumnus herself along with my father and she always said that she didn't want me to be tainted by lower-class temptations."

This revelation stunned everyone. The three Malfoys looked at each other and when his grandparents weren't looking, Daphne winked conspiratorially at him.

Soon after that, it was time for dinner and the conversation was very easy. Draco watched his grandparent's faces for any sign of displeasure but it seemed as if Daphne had passed day one.

After drinks and dessert, everyone decided that it would be best to go to bed. Once they were sure that the elder Malfoys were asleep, Narcissa motioned for Draco and Hermione to come into the kitchen for a conference, while Lucius went into his study with a drink in hand.

"That went well," Narcissa commented. "Hermione, that bit about you being in school in the States was brilliant and I really think they're cotton to you."

Hermione nodded modestly. "Thank you, but I'll admit that when she asked the question about where I went to school, I almost freaked out and told her the truth! That story I fed her was just made up out of thin air."

Narcissa went back into the sitting room and checked the clock. It was almost midnight. She walked back into the little alcove and addressed Draco and Hermione.

"It's nearly midnight, so I want the two of you to try and get some rest. We all did well today, but this is only day one."

Draco and Hermione bid Narcissa and Lucius good night and went to their respective bedrooms. Draco's journey happened without incident, but on the way to her own room, Hermione saw that the door to the guest bedroom where Draco's grandparents were was open a crack and that his grandmother was writing a note, which was reading itself as the words touched the paper.

"Dear Arion,

You must bring the family down here to meet Draco's fiancée!

Lucius and Narcissa have done an absolutely splendid job finding someone for him. She's smart, charming and beautiful, not to mention very well-bred.

I know that you're ready to patch things up with Lucius, and you must admit that it's been years since the two of you have sat down together and had a civilized conversation.

Maybe Daphne, (that's the lucky girl's name) can even find a suitable girl for Fallon! If possible, I want you to come.

Mother"

About ten minutes after the letter was signed, another voice read a reply out to Draco's grandmother.

"Dear Mother,

You know better then anyone how much I wish to patch things up with Lucius. However, you might speak to him before I arrive and tell him that I'm coming.

I can't wait to meet this girl. Fallon's brought several girls home for our inspection but none of them are of proper breeding or even come close to meeting the family standards. Maybe it is time to go to some outside sources. I asked Allegra and she says that we will be able to come in a few days.

Can't wait to see you,

Arion"

After the letter was done reading itself, Hermione quickly ran to Draco's room to tell him the news, but when she arrived she found an unpleasantly familiar sight.

As she entered his room, Draco glowered at her.

"What do you want?"

She frowned. "What is your problem? I thought we were getting on well. Besides, your grandparents like me."

He scowled. "They do like you. Too much. What the hell am I supposed to tell them when we have to get the divorce?"

"What do you mean?"

He growled and ran his fingers through his hair.

"Of course we're getting a divorce! Do you honestly want to spend the rest of our lives in this sick and twisted lie?"

He looked at her, waiting for her to say something, but she couldn't find any words. She backed up to sit on his bed, picked up his pillow and hugged it to her chest. Finally, she spoke.

"No, I don't," she answered firmly. "Not if you act like that. Besides, if anyone thinks that I'm going to dump my good friends to be glued to Pansy's hip, they are sorely mistaken. I'm glad to know that you're still the same git you always were."

Draco's face didn't change expression. "Good. Then we understand one another?"

Hermione nodded. "Of course. And I didn't come to pick a fight. I was going to my room when I heard your grandmother writing a letter to somebody named Arion, telling him to bring Darian along too. Then Arion responded saying he'd be here in a few days."

Draco's eyes widened. "My uncle Arion's coming here? And he's bringing my cousin Fallon too? Father will not be glad to hear that."

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