A Serpent and His Rose [Coming Home]

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It turns out that clearing things up with the Ministry wasn't as simple as Blaise led you to believe. Draco didn't come back the night of the raid, or the day after that. In fact, neither you nor any of your friends heard a word about Draco's whereabouts for the remainder of break. It was nerve-wracking for you to sit around the castle and wait, so you often distracted yourself by going for a run or Flooing home to work with Jason on the choreography for the showcase. You hadn't realized how quickly time was passing. The showcase was only three months away and you felt like shit.

"You look like shit." Jason said as he watched your transition from an arabesque to a pirouette.

"I know. I'm sorry."

"Still haven't heard from him?" he asked, sitting across from you on the dance floor. He took your arms and pulled you forward to stretch you further.

"No, nothing yet."

"You will. Don't worry." he gave you a reassuring smile. Then his face turned into what you referred to as the Serious Jason expression. "What you should be worrying about is this showcase! Now I've put my trust in you, which is why I haven't found a new partner and replaced your ass. DO NOT make me regret it!"

You couldn't help but giggle. You never took Serious Jason seriously. But you still pat him on the back and promised him you wouldn't let him down.

Jason offered to give you a ride home but you decided to walk. It was cool and breezy out, the perfect cool down to your workout that afternoon. When you got to the park around the corner by your house you dropped your duffle bag next to a swing and sat in it. You really hated how distracted you had gotten. You were risking your future as a dancer if you didn't shape up. And you were doing so poorly in school as of late that you doubted the Ministry would take you. You kicked your legs out and swung into the air. The cool air felt rejuvenating against your skin. You remembered coming to this park when you were little. You used to jump off the swing to see how far you could go. You missed the simplicity of that time. You let the swing slow to a stop, then picked up your bag and continued on your walk home.

"Andrea?" you heard as soon as you walked through the door. Your mother and father were sitting in the front room drinking tea.


"Come join us. We have something to discuss with you."

You set your bag down and sank next to your mother on the couch. You didn't like this. You rarely ever had tea with your parents. Your father flicked his mustache in an effort to get any remaining drops of liquid off after his sip, then turned his attention to you.

"Your mother and I have discussed it. We've also had a meeting with Professor Dumbledore, and we've decided it best to pull you out of school."

"WHAT?!" your mouth dropped in shock.

"Now dear, I know it's a lot. But with everything that has happened this year and your poor performance, we think it best for you to come home and... rest." she said, patting your knee. You knocked her hand away and stood up angrily.

"I won't. You can't make me!"

"It's already done!" your father bellowed frustratedly.

"WELL THEN UNDO IT!" you screamed. You were being dramatic, and you knew it. But how could they think you would be okay with this?

"Andrea, you need to be home. You already come home so often these days!"

"Yes, to dance with Jason!"

"Well wouldn't it be great to stay here and focus on that?"

You froze, staring at the two of them. They were actually asking you to leave school, and focus on dancing. You were completely flabbergasted. Your mother pulled you into a bone crushing hug, tears beginning to fall onto her cheeks. You realized that they must have been so worried since Adam attacked you. They came to see you in the hospital wing but you refused to even acknowledge the incident occurred when they were present. It was too hard. But your sure that somebody told them the truth.

"We will be home schooling you. We've worked it out with Dumbledore and the Ministry. You are allowed to use Underage magic here strictly for educational purposes only." your father said, getting back to business. He looked uncomfortable. He never was one for emotion. This time you didn't protest. You realized that the time you spent at home is the only time you can actually relax and breathe. And you would be able to focus on the showcase. You nodded toward your parents, then picked up your bag and went upstairs to send an owl.

When you got to your bedroom you saw your trunk and all your stuff at the foot of the bed already. You sat at the writing desk in the corner of your room and took a pen out of the drawer. You had become obsessed with this Muggle object. It was so much easier than a quill and ink, you wondered why the wizarding world hasn't caught on to them. You set the pen to parchment and began to write.


I won't be coming back to Hogwarts. My parents think it best to stay home and focus on myself. I think they might be right. Don't tell them I said that, though. I'll miss you so much. Thanks for always being there for me. Don't forget to owl, and we will have to arrange a visit as soon as we can!



You stuck the parchment into the envelope and went to your owl, Twitchy. He sat in his cage, sound asleep. You tapped on the door and his eyes popped open, his head jerking up to alert attention. He caught sight of you he hooted gleefully. You loved Twitchy. He was on the older side so you didn't bring him with you to school anymore. You could tell that he missed you. He nipped your finger and you fed him an owl treat.

"You take this to Tammy, okay?"

He hooted and flew off through the window after you tied it to his leg. His coarse of flight wasn't straight. He twitched and it threw him off ever so slightly. But you loved it because it made you laugh. You sat back at the desk and thought about what to do next. Finally, you picked the pen a second time.

Dear Draco,

You stopped. You hadn't written to him. You worried that if he were in hiding, sending an owl might give away his position. You only assumed he was somewhere where that was an issue, as he hasn't written to you. You haven't heard a word about the Malfoys from anyone. Blaise knew nothing. You scoured the Daily Prophet for any mention of them in the last week. They hadn't written anything since the wedding announcement. You decided that you would write the letter, then decide whether or not to send it. It might be therapeutic for you.

Dear Draco,

I have no idea where you are, but I hope this letter gets to you. I've left Hogwarts and am spending the remainder of the year at home. I was upset about it at first but now I realize it is what's best for me. I want you to know I've been going mad waiting for you to get back. You probably don't know this, but I did show up at your house that day. Now that I think back on it, I'm not sure what I would have done if I walked in on your actual wedding. I hadn't thought that far ahead. I hoped that if you just saw me one last time, you wouldn't go through with it. And I try desperately not to think about it now, but sometimes the question nags at the back of my mind. If there was no raid, and I didn't show up, what would have happened? It's trivial to dwell on it, but the longer I don't hear from you, the more I wonder. Would you have said I do?



You stared at the parchment in front of you. You hadn't even realized that it was bothering you so much until you wrote it down. Would Draco really have married somebody else? You slowly folded the letter and stuffed it into an envelope. Then you stood and went to the den, where your fathers owl sat on his perch. He held his leg out to you, but you hesitated. You still weren't sure if sending it was a good idea. The owl looked annoyed, but still held his leg out obediently.

"I'm sorry Bernie." you apologized. You bit your lip in contemplation. But the longer you stood there the more the question burned inside your brain. You decided you needed the answer. You tied the letter to Bernie's leg and fed him an owl treat.

"This goes to Draco Malfoy, Bernie." he hooted and flew out into the sky. You watched him fly, anxiety already mounting inside you at the thought of what response he would return with.

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