Chapter 6 Interrogation and Conversation
It was dark out, but Fred still paced, wondering and waiting. Malfoy was surely home by now! Had he gone to investigate like he had said, or was it just an empty promise?
It was never a promise in the first place! he chastised himself.
He had almost given up, when he heard the telltale footsteps coming down the stairs towards his cell. The thought that it could be anyone, not just Malfoy, went through his head but he dismissed it, not really wanting to dwell on that. Turning quickly, he spotted the blond boy shuffling his way toward the door, and mentally sighed in relief. Malfoy, though, didn't look very happy, and Fred wondered what had caused his bad mood.
"Well, I was beginning to think you'd forgotten me," he said, walking toward the barred door, crossing his arms in front of him.
"I wish," Malfoy mumbled. Fred almost didn't hear him, and wondered what he'd meant by it.
"So...?" Fred questioned, looking at Malfoy eagerly.
Malfoy sighed, and Fred was suddenly struck by how tired the younger boy looked. The longer I observe him, the more questions I get.
"I saw your shop. It was open."
Fred wasn't sure how to feel. He was happy that the shop had had it's grand opening, that George hadn't halted it because of him, but he was also upset that he couldn't have been there to see it happen. But Malfoy hadn't answered the biggest question.
"What about George, my twin?"
Malfoy looked a little guilty, and Fred felt a surge of disappointment, as if he could tell what was coming.
"Well, I didn't stay that long, but I didn't see him. He must've been in the back."
The disappointed feeling turned to one of despair. He'd wanted news of his twin so badly! He had never been away from him this long before, and it felt so wrong. Nevertheless, he tried to put a smile on his face, and he said, "Thanks anyways, Malfoy." He turned away from the door, but the Slytherin's voice stopped him.
"I didn't know you knew Melody Landis."
For a moment Fred was confused, and then he remembered exactly who he was talking about. "Oh, well, I don't know her really. I just met her in the Alley the day, well, that I got brought here." Fred noticed the contemplating look on Malfoy's face, and asked, "Why?"
Draco hummed. "Seems she was helping at your shop. I talked to her momentarily while I was there."
"Was she now?” he said, a small smile tugging at his mouth. “I guess that goes to prove then, that Slytherins can be nice." At this, Malfoy raised an eyebrow.
"Well, some Slytherins. I still have to see about you," Fred said, wiggling his own eyebrows. This earned rolled eyes and a scoff from the other boy.
"Who said I'm not nice? What am I being now?"
Fred pretended to contemplate. Then he finally said," Tolerable."
More rolled eyes, and he turned to leave. But Fred called after him, saying, "I might change my mind, if you can smuggle me a nice juicy apple..."
"In your dreams, Weasley," Malfoy shot back over his shoulder.
"Ah, and what beautifully tasty ones they'll be."
It was worth a try. Besides, who else here would give me all that food the other night? Was the house elf acting independently? It wouldn't be the first time I suppose…
"So, Weasley, are you ready to answer some questions?" Bellatrix asked in her sickly sweet voice.
"Good morning to you too," Fred drawled, blinking in the early morning light that illuminated the cell.
"Still have such a quick and witty tongue. Maybe I should cut it out?"
Fred suppressed a shudder, but she unfortunately noticed. "Oh, don't worry, I won't do that yet. I want you to talk, see, so as long as I think you have information I want, you get to keep it. If you don't say anything anyways, then both ways it's just a matter of waiting." Her high-pitched cackle echoed around the large room.
Fred took a deep breath, bracing himself for what he knew would eventually happen.
"Now, tell me where the headquarters of the Order of the Phoenix is."
Now that was something he did know, but wouldn't be able to say anyways. He presses his lips together, and was promptly crucioed.
"I guess I'll ask you again!" she snarled, as Fred was breathing heavily at her feet. She hadn't kept the curse on him long, but he was still proud of the fact that he'd not made a noise.
"Where is the order located?" she said, the shrillness of her voice hurting his eardrums.
Later that evening, Draco made his way back to the cell. He told himself it was just because he was terribly bored, that visiting Weasley was just something to do out of the monotony of the day. But a little voice in the back of his head told him otherwise. He quickly squashed said voice, though, and put on his trademark sneer. Which instantly vanished as he saw the boy.
Fred was lying sprawled out on the floor, motionless, a pained grimace on his face. His eyes were shut, and Draco wasn't sure if he was awake or not.
"Weasley!" he demanded. Nothing. "Wake up!" Still nothing. He was about to call Libby, when he remembered that his mother had asked her to do some garden work earlier, and he didn't want his mother suspicious of why he would call her away all of a sudden.
Pausing for only a minute, he quickly unlocked the barred door, ignoring the now shouting voice in his head that said he was being stupid. In three quick strides, he found himself standing next to the older boy, and he knelt down. He then noticed something that he'd failed to see from the other side of the room. Every few seconds, a tremor would rock Fred's whole form. That's when he realized what had happened.
For a moment, Draco was afraid that it had been done too long, that the twin would be mad like the Longbottoms. But then his reasonable side said that his aunt, and he was certain this was her doing, would know better, because he was valuable, and only if he was sane.
Raising his wand, Draco muttered,"Rennervate," and hoped that it would wake the older boy up.
It did. Fred Weasley came too with a gasp, and his face screwed up in even more pain. His eyelids fluttered open, and he looked confused for a moment. Then he looked downright shocked. Draco realized it was because of him, but for some reason, he couldn't care less that he was kneeling on the dirty cellar floor, over a Weasley, looking as though he was concerned.
No, NOT concerned! his Malfoy side shouted.
Then why else are you here? the logical and annoying side countered.
Well, whatever was going on, Draco desperately hoped his aunt wouldn't come in.
"Malfoy?" Fred asked, his voice hoarse. Draco quickly stood up.
"Just making sure you were still alive," he said quickly in clipped tones. He didn't want the Weasley knowing about his inner battle.
"Oh, Merlin." Fred groaned. "And I thought my aunt was bad."
Draco narrowed his eyes, but Fred was continuing.
"My Aunt Mauriel. Stuck up. Makes me think of Percy. George and I got into trouble one Christmas when we set off dung bombs under her chair. She's not visited for Christmas since."
Draco was beginning to think that maybe he had gone a little mad from the curse.
"I can't do anything for the aftereffects of the curse. There's a potion that's supposed to help, but I don't have any, and I don't want any suspicion on me for anything anyways."
"'Kay. Thanks for checking on me though." Draco shook his head, seriously doubting the twin’s mental state. He then turned, and without another word, left the cell.
Fred was sore all over. He felt as though he'd been beaten by a thousand bludgers, and then dipped in a pot of boiling oil. Or, at least that's what he figured he'd compare it to. He'd been hit by bludgers before, but never dipped in boiling oil.
Bellatrix hadn't been very happy with his silence, and had finally resorted to not lifting the curse. Somewhere in his pain filled thoughts, he was worried about losing it, but due to the exhausted state his body was already in, he quickly succumbed to the darkness.
When he had woken up, he was really shocked to see Malfoy of all people hovering over him. This boy was just plain complicated!
It wasn't until Malfoy left, though, that he noticed he'd left something behind.
Fred stared at the dark red apple in disbelief.
Draco Malfoy, who are you really?