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Chapter 50 - Christmas Malfoy Style

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Harry spent most of Christmas Eve, his first day at Malfoy Manor, walking around with his mouth open. Not only had Narcissa hired the foremost experts in home defences and had the whole manor redone so it was safe for him and Draco, but she had outdone herself in the decorations department as well. He had thought Hogwarts really went all out for festivals, but Draco's mother had really put on amazing show at the manor. Whereas Hogwarts decorations were usually on the childish side, Narcissa's were sophisticated and delicate.

Icicles, real icicles that were cold to the touch, but not melting all over the floor, decorated the banisters for the main staircase. It was constantly snowing on the first landing, although the snow didn't lay on anything except people when they walked through it. Holly, with bright red berries, silver bells and something with small white flowers adorned the walls in various places in long, beautiful garlands and ivy hung over doorways with sprigs of mistletoe.

Draco had so far caught him ten times in doorways with a grin and a kiss. Harry didn't pause every time he came into a room or anything like that, well, at least he wasn't admitting to it.

Then of course there was the tree. It was huge and it looked as if it had been decorated by artfully trained spiders and then the frost had come down all over it. Candles illuminated the whole thing with gently flickering flames. It was stunning.

By Christmas day, Harry had at least managed to stop gawping.

"You look edible," Draco said as Harry stepped out of the bathroom after doing his best to tame his hair.

They were both dressed in what Draco called smart-casual, with nice trousers, shirts and jackets, but nothing too fussy like ties.

"If I look edible then you look entirely scrumptious," Harry said and smiled.

"Enough with the food metaphors," Draco said, standing up from where he had been lounging on the bed, "it's breakfast time."

Draco had explained that Christmas breakfast was a family tradition, almost as important as Christmas dinner, which would be served at around four in the afternoon. Christmas breakfast was for immediate family, which made Harry ecstatic to realise Narcissa had included Sirius and Remus in that, and Christmas dinner was for slightly more distant family and very close friends. It was going to be a somewhat larger gathering later in the day as Narcissa had invited her sister Andromeda, her husband Ted and Tonks, Snape and Hilde, along with the five of them already in the house.

According to Draco, Andromeda and her husband had not been invited to breakfast only because Narcissa was still in the process of building bridges. Next year Draco assured him, Andromeda and Ted would most likely be staying for the whole season.

Harry was going to miss the Weasleys, but since they had their own family gathering on Christmas day, Narcissa had invited them all over for Boxing Day. It was about sixty-forty as to how many of the current day's guests would still be there on Boxing Day as well.

"Come on," Draco said, grabbing his hand and pulling him towards the door.

[It's like you're eleven again,] Harry said silently as they exited into the hall.

[I haven't felt like this since I was eleven,] Draco replied, beaming at him, [or maybe twelve. Last year I thought this was all gone and now I want to share it all with you.]

Draco charged off down the corridor, dragging Harry behind him and Harry couldn't help it, he started laughing. It was utterly wonderful to see his soulmate so happy. It was the best Christmas present he could ever have received.

As they descended the stairs, Draco set all the icicles swinging so they tinkled against each other.

[Mum used to threaten to take away my Christmas presents every time I used to do that,] Draco said, [but I think she always wanted to do the same herself.]

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