Playing with Fire

Chapter 67: A Common Goal

Song: Hallucinations - PVRIS

A/N: Fair warning there may be a small ship in this one - it’s innocent. Idk, it felt right when I was writing it so don’t hate on me lol.

~~~

“You all heard her! She needs fucking help! Am I the only bloody person that has ears around here?”, Ron asked hysterically, his voice hoarse from yelling at the group.

“We mustn’t rush into anything and make a grave mistake Ronald! Listen to yourself!”, McGonagall argued.

“She’s right, Weasley”, Kingsley added, “Think about what’s best for the movement. This could be a trap and rushing in after Miss Granger could be detrimental.”

Ron tossed chairs, papers, and quills around the small room. Charlie and George sat silently at the table with the rest of them, observing. They understood their brother’s panic - he loved Hermione. It was more than a simple rescue mission he was after. He hadn’t even known she was alive until Halloween, and now, he knew where to find her. It didn’t help that they were all on edge about Ginny.

“You all would be on board if it were Harry!”, Ron shouted, face turning red. A hush fell over the room at his words. “She’s an asset. She’s important.”, he said in a lower tone now.

“My word is final. We wait until we have more information from our connections”, Kingsley stated simply, eyes stern on Ron’s.

“And who are your connections exactly? They haven’t given us anything useful so far!”, his voice raised again. Everyone stared except McGonagall, who averted her eyes. “First Ginny disappears and now this? How many bloody people are we going to throw to the dogs to fend for themselves?” Steam practically shot out of his ears.

Ron had had enough and he huffed heavily and cursed as he stormed out of the room, slamming the door behind him.

“Run along dears...Kingsley and I need to discuss some things”, McGonagall said when George and Charlie awaited instruction. They nodded briefly, apologizing for Ron’s behavior and taking up for him before departing the room.

Minerva locked the door and cast a silencing charm before speaking. “I heard from Lucius. He says Ginny got there safely”

“Good. Good. I never doubted it. Anything about Miss Granger?”, he asked the woman.

“Not much, she’s alive that’s all that matters. We just need to be ready to move in at any moment, but not until he tells us exactly when. We can’t mess this up, this is our chance Kingsley”, she said with hope filling her ocean-blue eyes.

The tall man nodded in response, his kind brown eyes bore into hers as he took her hand, placing a kiss there. “I know Minerva, it will be alright. I’m sure of it”, he assured her.

“My only concern is...well I have many of course”, the woman laughed softly, “Charlie insists that...well”

“What is it Minerva?”, he said, rubbing her palm softly to comfort her.

“At the bombing of Hogwarts...Charlie was there, I’m sure you remember. He says that…”, she gulped heavily, “that it was Draco Malfoy.” Her heart felt heavy with regret for the boy she taught from age 11. She watched him go from an innocent, arrogant little boy, to a terrified young man trying to protect his family, to a ruthless executioner.

~~~

“And what exactly did they say when they owled you back?”, the redhead asked with her hands firm on her hips.

“They didn’t”, the arrogant blonde said, not even facing her as he reclined in his chair.

“They didn’t? Then how do you know they got the message?”, she asked in a frenzied voice.

“I know they did. My owl is reliable”, he assured her calmly. She despised the man with every fiber of her being. Hated being in this house. Being anywhere near this man really. But it was all worth it for the sake of Hermione.

“Well forgive me if I’m not eager to trust you, Mr. Malfoy”, she practically spat at him.

“Ginevra...may I call you Ginevra?”, Lucius asked with a smirk.

“No”, she said simply, narrowing her eyes at him despite the fact that he was blind. She wanted nothing more than to off the man right then and there while his guard was down.

Lucius laughed again, shaking his head. “We have a common goal, Miss Weasley. Rest assured, I want Voldemort as dead as you do if not more.”

Ginny laughed spitefully at this, “Right. That would be the day. So what’s the plan then?”

“How exactly do you think you’re going to be involved in this? You’re clearly under the impression you’ll be on the front lines”, he responded with a chuckle.

“Under the impression? I will be on the front lines. In fact, I’d love nothing more than to end that fucker myself”, she huffed, crossing her arms.

“I’m afraid you’ll have to fight me for that honor”, he responded with a sly smile, taking a sip of his drink. “It’ll throw Hermione off if she knows you’re here. You realize that don’t you? She’s in the right headspace to bring us all to the point where we can finish this.”

Ginny was angry. Because he was right. She had never seen Hermione with such determination...she was ruthless. Unrecognizable. She was proud of her best friend, and she didn’t want to ruin it. Honestly, at this point, she believed Hermione deserved the right more than anyone, but she knew the plan was for Draco to do it. She just wasn’t sure why.

“Regardless”, she said, shaking her head at the man, “What’s the plan? I still need to know what’s going on”

“I suppose you’re right”, he said twirling the ice in his glass. His other hand held the snake-headed staff. It was strange the way he never even put it down, and Ginny was overtly aware of it.

“We have to do this right or it will all go up in flames, you understand?”, his tone turned serious. Ginny nodded in response. “Hermione’s reference clearly indicated she’s here at Malfoy Manor. Meaning, this is where the Incendiaries will show up. The key is going to be getting them here and alerting the Dark Lord that they are on their way. We have to catch him off guard. There are a thousand ways this can go wrong, alright?”

“Yes, yes, I fucking understand. This isn’t my first run-in with the cunt”, Ginny scoffed. “Get on with it.”

Lucius rolled his pale eyes at the girl. And he thought Hermione was feisty. That was nothing compared to this Weasley girl. “They need to be here lying in wait. There will be no time for reunions and hugs and all that ridiculousness. It needs to be quick. We must strike while the iron is hot. I’m thinking three days time would be optimal. Any longer and it will appear to the Dark Lord that the Incendiaries haven’t taken the bait.”

Ginny nodded in understanding. Right again.

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