If I Wake Up Crying (Epilogue)
Only do not forget, if I wake up crying
it's only because in my dream I'm a lost child
hunting through the leaves of the night for your hands..." (Pablo Neruda)
The snow can be a cruel canvas.
Especially if blood is what you are painting it with.
Which seems to be my medium of choice.
I hate this dream.
But it never goes away with the realization that it is a dream.
Walk. That is all it will allow me to do.
So I do.
I walk towards the frozen fountain.
Fashioned out of grey stone and over loaded with the same snow.
Solemn nymphs paying sad respects to the non-existent residents of the fountain pool.
Oh, no, the pool is never empty in this dream.
I know it's not real. I know that I will wake up from this.
But I also know that I will not wake up before my heart is shredded into bloody ribbons one more time.
I don't want to move. I don't want to see the turquoise ice in the pool and what lies beneath that vivid sheet of freeze.
But then I am staring at it.
So clear against the gray stone and white snow and transparent.
And grey eyes stare up from under that transparent layer of snow.
Grey unseeing eyes, beautiful and terribly lost.
Pale white untouched skin and pale blonde short hair.
He is so thin and fragile, frozen in ice, on a macabre display. I can't help but reach for him.
But the sheet of ice is a barrier between us. Ice that is turning silver and reflecting rainbow colours as I try to break it with the bloody fists.
Draco! Have to get him out! Have to get him out! I can't seem to breathe and my fists can't move any more.
I am being surrounded now. I have to go.
I have to leave behind Draco to rescue another day.
I know this. I know.
And then I am stepping out of the dream.
Into reality once again.
I am being held and I am being surrounded.
Warm and sweet and determined.
Silver eyes trained on mine watching cautiously.
And my fists against his chest as if trying to push him away.
I order my mind to pry open my fists and pull him back towards me.
He comes easily. But the edge of despair in his eyes is clear as dawn to me who has only been reading his eyes for all his wants and desires for the past Eight months.
"I am sorry love. I am so sorry, I was dreaming again…." I whisper to him as soothingly as I can, pulling him ever closer and kissing those worrying lips again and again gentle and reassuring. The stiffness in the broad shoulder dissipates slowly under the constant heat of my rubbing hands and the stiff protrusions of his wing blades melt back into the skin.
He is kissing me back now. Passionate and relieved, I can tell. I am his. He knows this. But twenty long years of abandonment can do copious damage and make trust a difficult task.
I must admit that things have been better since we moved back to the manor.
A big familiar space with loads of flight grounds and isolation.
The isolation has been the only thing that has worked so far.
Sometimes in the long evenings I feel as if I am going to go mad because of the quietness.
But then I am placed solidly on the ground again when I blink and think of things Draco had to go through for twenty long years.
Isolation, melancholy, anonymity, silence, hopelessness and an impending sense of doom.
I have my miracle.
Someone who loves me so fiercely that it is hard to breathe sometimes when the realization breaks upon me.
Someone so thoroughly devoted to me that it is impossible for an outsider looking in, to comprehend.
And every single day through trial and success and on many occasions, error, I realize how deeply I fall in love with him, with all the parts that are still present and the parts still missing.
Every day, my vow and my bond to him grows stronger and I know that I will give the rest of my life to the sole purpose of putting all of him back together again. Impossible as it may seem, but as always that has never been a deterrent for me and I am not going to start now, when I have found my purpose and my love.
He gave me hope when there was none left. He saved what was most precious to me, he died for the mistakes I made unknowingly.
No, not going to stop trying.
A cool hand at the back of my neck distracts me and I realize that I have been lost in thoughts for while if he has come back from his flight already.
I lean back into the touch and look down at the half-finished letter.
I am nervous. I must admit.
I have been thinking about inviting Lily and Albus to the manor for days now.
I have not seen them both in the last 4 months.
And the last time was extremely brief because Draco could not bear to be away from me for more than 2 hours at that point.
I had foolishly taken 3 hours because Albus was running late and I did not want to return without seeing him.
I had returned to chaos.
The song was devastating and all the house-elves were in despair.
All 75 of them.
And the elflings were traumatized.
It took me 2 days to calm Draco down.
And the progress regarding the dependence we had made in past Four months was almost lost.
"Are you really sure about Albus and Lily's visit on Sunday?"
He moves slightly in that graceful way he does, even when half-naked and kneels down by my side facing me leaning back against the desk.
I notice his hair and his eye lashes are damp.
"Did you take a dip in the lake again?" but then my eyes fall on the window outside and I see delicate droplets of rain staining the old glass.
He has been flying in the rain. I regret missing watching him fly today he is always majestic when he flies, but in the rain… In the rain he is a whole different story. He looks at my face inquisitively and then looks up at the letter that lies half written on the desk. I know he is asking me what the problem is. We have been discussing this for a while now. Or I have been discussing and he has been perhaps acclimatizing to the concept of sharing my devotion.
I can only sigh as he pulls me out of the chair and into his lap as effortlessly as if I was child.
There are times when his physical strength startles me more than his Veela magic.
He has grown rapidly into the form he was always supposed to be.
I can't help myself from caressing the smooth and strong broad shoulders, but he will not be sidetracked even if his throat makes that soft sound of pleasure, his eyes are intent.
"I can tell you that it's not either of you that I am afraid for…"
He shakes his head slightly with a querying expression a little unsure.
"No…" I assure him burying my fingers in his damp silver tresses.
"I think I am afraid of breaking this. I know how it sounds, but I have grown to love this little isolated corner of ours where I can be with you and not be afraid of… This is a world we have made for us. And I belong here, but I also belong there, with my children because I also helped create that world, but now, when I think about it, I cannot help but be reminded every single moment that I am in that world that it was built on your pain. That you suffered for it to exist in the first place. And it's a hot pain. And I wish that I could…"
He just smiles at me, before he shuffles his long fingers through my hair and making an utter mess of the already impossible. It's his way of saying that I am being silly.
I am annoyed for a second. But his eyes are so full of peace and assurance that I can't help but feel as if this is a possibility now. And by Merlin, I want it to be a possibility. Having the best of the both worlds together. Having a life where I can devote myself to my Veela but also see my children regularly, be there at the important events in their lives.
I stare at him.
"Do you know that you are the most amazing being ever?" I can't help but be proud of him.
And there is that signature Malfoy smirk that is showing up more often these days.
I can't help but kiss him. Claim those beautiful lips and pour all my amazement and praise into them.
"The letter…I have to…" I manage to remember sometime later between misty kisses.
But my protests falls on deaf ears, and I for one don't mind that much.
The reply was enthusiastic. I did not expect any less from my Albus and Lily, but I worry still. It's been a year and My Veela has been making monumental progress in just last two months. On the other hand my children have been so understanding and supportive about this decision that I have made that it is seeming like a good idea every alternate hour, which is until every other hour I can also clearly relay in my mind how all of this can go disastrously wrong. And hence here I sit in front of the ornate floo place of the Malfoy manor, waiting for the clock to strike 9 o'clock so that my children may arrive.
I can feel Draco's anxiousness in my teeth, but it is not as strong as I was expecting it to be. He is pacing lightly in the saloon just off the hall that the foyer leads through. It's not an anxious or nervous pace. It is graceful and unhurried. He has also dressed himself meticulously for the occasion. I remember the surprise it was when I stepped out of the bath earlier. He has been returning towards wearing more and more clothing items lately, but full on proper wizarding robes, it is the first time in the whole year that I have been with him. In the beginning he would fly naked torso in the freezing Wiltshire winter, and always return warmer than when he had left. Such a wonderful display of resilience and magic is awe inspiring much like most of his magical display now. How instinctual it is, how visceral and beautiful. I know he is holding back every time I try to lure him into practice while I practice myself every day and he watches with those hungry and hot eyes, every single move of mine, every single day. Nothing gets to him more than me wielding my magic.
He can levitate on will without his wings ever surfacing above his skin. And one time a few months back when he was annoyed with me because of one thing or the other he levitated close to the Solarium dome in the centre hall for 3 hours, sulking, just sitting there on the air and looking outside through the glass panels at the falling snow, and of course pretending to ignore me. If I had not hit my head on the side of the Marble pillar while trying to fly up to him on my broom, I am pretty sure the sulk would have gone on for at least as many more hours.
My wand is like an object of worship for him, but his old wand, the reason for why this story unfolded the way it did, still makes him extremely sad, which is why it remains in a safe in the library. It is at times like these when I really wish he would speak and explain to me what he feels and how he feels, sometimes I can't help but wish for the punishment of words from him. But when punishment is a desire and release in itself, it is not a punishment any more. So I make do with the silence. Knowing that I deserve it. That is until the song starts and all the anguish his silence causes washes away into mad, mad love and affection.
My mind wanders to the ever growing stack of letters that are placed in the study drawers. Letters from Hermione, Luna, Rose, Leo and of course from Aali and Sarah. Letters that constantly keep me updated about the progress all these minds put together are making in order to do something about the situation with Draco. Draco's own notes have perhaps been the biggest help in the matter, and Albus is so sure that they are very close to reversing the damage done. I let them keep at it and encourage them as much as I can even though I am not really sure what they are trying to do. Make Draco whole again? But Draco is whole, there used to be more, but a part of me knows that no matter how much they research and work towards it, the real key lies with Lily. And if anyone would be able to do it ever, it would be Lily.
But I will never ask it of her, because I know that was never Draco's plan and I will always to my dying breath respect Draco's decision. I have made a vow to myself that not letting Draco die when he planned is the last violation of his wishes that I am going to commit. If ever Lily takes interest and wants to do it on her own for Draco then I will leave that decision to Draco and Lily. But even if I get to spend the rest of my life with just this much, it will still be more than I have any right to ask. I love him, as he was, as he became and as he is now. Any shade, scrap, grub of him is sacred to me. This is what I feel. This where I live now, between love, adoration, and sacred devotion. And though a part of me will always miss the part of him that is gone missing. I am more complete than I have even been.
His cool fingers touch my temple and I am gently brought out of my thoughts, he must have felt the surge of pure and unadulterated love in my emotions which always brings him to my side regardless of circumstances. His beautiful face inquisitive.
"I love you more than words would ever be able to express…" I say to him. He leans forward and kisses me softly on the cheek and turn his head slightly to my ear.
And then like a punch to my chest his voice comes:
"Which is why you should leave off words altogether Potter…"
Before I can say anything, frozen in surprise as I am to hear that voice for the first time in a year and more than that voice the peculiar words that have just been spoken to me, the ping on the floo chimes just as the clock chimes the first strike of nine, and the floo livens up. And out steps Albus followed closely by Lily.
- The End -
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