Draco knocked at the front door, wondering if Bellatrix would hear from whatever room she was in. He had been unable to visit her for so long due to his companions, whom he had spent some time entertaining since his mother seemed to be out lately - to where, only Merlin knew. However, he finally found himself with time alone and so hastened over to visit his aunt. Not only did he have the perfunctory 'Happy Holidays' to greet her with, but he was curious as to her remarks in her last journal entry.
Hearing the knock, which echoed through the house, Bella jumped up, heart thumping. Was she being just as insane as everyone always said she was? She heard it again and went barreling down towards the entrance way doing her best not to trip over her flowing gown of red and black silk. It was modest yet cut in the manner tohug her curves that are once again filling out. The effect was rather apealing. She swung the door open as soon as she grasped the handle and her heart melted slightly at the young man on the door stoop. "ooooooooh, Darling Draco! Come to visit your Auntie at last!" She pulled him into the hall and slammed the door shut before throwing her arms around him and pulling his head into her ample bosom, nearly squeezing the life out of him in her excitement. Although Draco was tall, she was still a tad taller. "So, tell me, how's your holiday?"
Draco was suddenly whipped in the red and black whirlwind of his aunt, taken aback at the sudden movement. Eccentric family members. He was used to that. " Happy Holidays, Aunt Bella," he said, muffled through the silk bosom and giving her his own, very awkward, hug. He was not a huggy person. He did not do hugs. But for long-estranged family members, he should at least give a decent effort. Nonetheless, he felt slightly relieved when the physical contact ended. " My holidays have been satisfactory. I have two companions over in the main house now, but you knew that already, didn't you?" He gave her a wry smirk that held no malice, " Apologies for not coming sooner; attending to guests is more time-consuming than I first imagined it to be."
Bella leaned over and peeked out the window. "Ah, yes, YOur commrades. I assume they are quite suitable for the eh...family business." She turned back with a half smile. "Why didn't you just bring them along? I'm sure that they are quite enjoyable company. I have been awfully bored in this gorgeous, but empty home." She pouted playfully at her nephew until she gave into the questions overloading her mind that she's been dying to ask. "How long can you stay? When do you have to return to Hogwarts? Tell me everything! Including the gossip on that wretched boy!"
" One of them," Draco replied, putting a hand through his hair to catch any errant, wispy locks and brush them from his face, " The other, we brought him here to show him the right side," except that wasn't really happening. Blaise was more just causing havoc - but if he wasn't here, the holidays would be quite solemn.
He did feel some pity for his aunt, who was locked up in this house and forbidden from leaving. " I might have brought Theodore Nott, but I think Blaise Zabini would have then pressed us to follow. We don't quite know his loyalties yet, so the situation would've been ... dangerous." He let the corner of his lip curve up in response to Bella's expression. " I have to return to that school in a week, and until then I will be here in the Manor. Potter's been very quiet lately - I think the Incident in the Department of Mysteries has more than just shaken his nerves." He smirked at the implication. Potter, it seemed, was permanently addled. He was pleased about that, but at the same time, a tiny part of himself wanted the old Potter back - life in school now was very .... boring wasn't the word, it was more lacking. He felt very alone at the top. The winner who desired the competition again. " Besides the events earlier this year, school life has been quite dull."
And now for him to give in to the questions he wanted answers for. He could tell from his mother's absence and the feeling in the house that something was happening. " And what was it you hinted about in your last journal entry? I'm burning with curiosity to know."
She grinned at Draco and her eyes twinkled. "Well, darling, it truely is something that your mother and father must decide to tell you on their own. But let me ask you this, how are your thoughts on the Dark Lord and his followers?"
((ahhh, if only I had a mother and father at the moment ~~~ ))
His thoughts on the Dark Lord? " I think they have the right priorities," he stated. He personally didn't think extermination was the way to go - if all were exterminated, Wizards really would die out - but firmly believed in the superiority of the purebloods and was for segregation, as well as for keeping Muggle-borns out of offices of power. As he stood, he was more willing to ally himself with the Darklord than that senile old man - not to mention his family had a set alliance already. " I support his goals." He continued, " But Aunt Bella, Father's always out on ... jobs, and mother's been absent quite a lot lately. I would much prefer to hear it from you now." Knowledge was power, after all.
Bella bit her lip, inwardly weighing the pros and cons. After all, if Master wanted to add the boy to his ranks (and from such fine lineage too!) then perhaps this was the way to go to get back in his good graces. She once again smiled at her nephew. "Draco, it's been brought to my attention the the Dark Lord himself has personally inquired as to your possible allegance to the Death eaters. If this is something you wish to pursue, then it will commence on your next birthday. I do believe that it is right around the corner. She squealed excitedly, but then the thought that this may a bit much for the boy sobered her instantly. "Just remember that this is something that you do not have to do. There is no obligation, and no one in the family would be hurt if you decided not to." She had no idea if this were true, but she did not wish to frighten the poor thing. She began to search his face anxiously trying to read his thoughts.
And Bella was soon to find out that it was very difficult to read Draco's thoughts if he so desired for them to be private. His face was rather blank, holding perhaps only a tint of polite curiosity and serious pondering.
Really, not choosing the Dark Lord was rather unthinkable. He was reared believing it to be a permanent fixture in his future - he was born, he went to school, he became a Death Eater, he begot an heir, and he died. Those were the few unmovable milestones. There essentially was no choice. It was just what pureblooded wizards of high class do. Not to mention, should the Dark Lord's side win, the best place to be would be right by his side.
He gave a cold, polite smile that, though he showed no teeth, had a distinctly feral edge to it, like a predator. " I would be honored to join the Dark Lord's ranks." Another milestone in sight. And he was only 16, turning 17 in a few weeks. He certainly had a lead against the rest of his generation, meaning, if he played his cards right, he would end up with a significantly larger cut of the proverbial cake. He couldn't help feeling his blood race at the thought - he was always too competitive and too power-hungry for his own good. " What are the proceedings?"
"Oh you know the usual, a tad bit of studying for the initiation, meeting our Lord, etc." Bella rattled off non-chalantly. "But look at us standing in the hall like fools. Do let's sit in the parlor so that we may talk more about you. Would you like tea?" As she began to speak, she took Draco's elbow to pull him down the hall.
Meeting the Dark Lord. He could live with that, he thought as he smirked grimly to himself - he had heard the Dark Lord was rather menacing in appearance, and not quite human-looking. Funny, rallying for the strength of purebloods under ... " Tea would be wonderful, thank you," he replied as Bella led him into the parlor. Yes, the guest house was large. They were Malfoys, after all.
It occured to him that things were going a bit quickly, but no one ever got anything sitting on their fat arse. So he believed. One had to seize the opportunity when it arose - Carpe Diem and all.
Bella gestured for him to sit in the overstuffed chair by the fire as she moved toward it to fetch the kettle of boiling water. She returned and sat herself on the love seat sofa nearby, attending the sterling silver tea tray. Quickly she prepared the tea and handed it to her nephew. She then began to wonder where to begin. "Well, of course you will have to undergo some training. I'm sure that with the trouble at that blasted school, you have not received the necessary dark arts knowledge to progress." She smirked then as she thought of something. "Although it may have been quite a show with the young Mr. Crouch a few years ago. I do believe you got a the basics of the spells that will require some fine tuning. I never understood why your parents wouldn't have sent you to somewhere such as Durmstrang so that you would be better prepared for this day. Probably some nostalgic memories, either that or to keep an eye on that old buzzard. I'm not sure how to arrange the meeting with the Dark Lord, though. You have company after all, and not quite sure how to arrange around them. Especially if they're as needy as you say. Any thoughts?"
Fourth Year DADA was, as his aunt put it, quite a show. He would never forget the Unforgivables - the image that was most burned into his mind was the spider under the Cruciatus Curse, but he found the Imperius Curse most frightening to him. The happy, empty blankness and the orders that were stupid, but for some reason sounded so simple and doable made him realize how weak-willed he could be. " I could take a day off from school for 'family business'," Draco tried as he sipped some tea. " My birthday falls during the school semester." Taking a day off would be by far the best option for him, in more ways than one.
"Great! I can't wait to get started, but tht will have to come in due time after some preparation. For now, let's just get to really know each other shall we? There's some much that yu really can't say in an Owl." Bella sipped her tea and patiently waited to see if Draco had any questions or remarks burning in the back of his mind. She wondered where his mother is, and if she was purposely neglecting the inevitable birthday looming over her. If she didn't step up to the task of preparing her son, then she herself definately would!
" I agree, there is always the worry of people snooping around." Draco idly wondered if there were people snooping around at the moment, if they knew what was going on in the Manor, and what they thought of it. " Do you perhaps know what kind of -errand- my father is currently performing for the Dark Lord?" He was curious. He hadn't heard from the patriarch in a while.
Bella frowned at the question. Her sister had not told her hardly anything about her husbands return. Bella was loathe to admit that she herself, who was once one of the most trusted and knowledgeable of all the deatheater's going-abouts, knew nothing of the jobs that Lucius may be on. With a sigh she shook her head. "I'm sorry Draco, I have not heard from your father and my task was very clear from the Dark Lord. I am to prepare you and then, perhaps, we together may begin on our own tasks." She did her best to offer him her best smile to show her faith that all will be well. Frankly, she hoped that this would put her back in her masters good graces.