Small Beginnings Chapter 5
Lucius stood in front of his mirror and adjusted his silver and black striped ascot.
"Black does become you, dear," said his mirror.
"Thank you," he said with a slight smile and a nod.
"Can you do up my laces, Lucius?" asked a soft voice behind him.
He turned to see Narcissa, his wife standing behind him, holding her new pink corset up to her form. He flicked his wand at her and the intricate laces began bobbing and weaving in
and out the small silver grommets.
"How tight do you want the laces to be?" he asked, gently reaching out to stroke her shoulder gently.
"I can squish, but don't hurt me," Narcissa said over her shoulder.
"Wouldn't dream of it," Lucius said tightening the laces firmly. He helped her step into a deep blue dress and watched as she adjusted her petticoats underneath.
She pointed her wand at her head and swished. Her hair twisted up in a simple motion, leaving a few wisps dangling about. They curled tightly and bounced slightly as she moved.
Ready?" he asked her as he shrugged a dark gray jacket over his shoulders.
"As ready as I'll ever be," said Narcissa slipping low black shoes on her feet.
"Do you think they'll be down at all?" Kalaryen Malfoy asked her husband in a rich Russian accent as she reached for a scone.
Byron spared his wife a distasteful look over the top of his newspaper before harrumphing at her and turning his attention back to his newspaper.
Kalaryen was nearly 3 decades younger then Byron and thought her husband must have forgotten what it was like to be young. Their own honeymoon lasted over a month. They hardly
left their chambers and had food brought up to them. Kalaryen blushed faintly at the memory. Her hair was still mostly raven black, although it was beginning to get white streaks in her
temples. She had a smooth, high forehead and a straight long nose. Her high cheekbones accentuated her light brown eyes and her full mouth still held the same smile it did 26 years ago
on her wedding day. She looked up and caught her husbands eye. He quirked an eyebrow at her and her eyes traced his form. He felt his shoe gently nudge her foot under the table and
she began giggling.
"Good morning, Mother. Father," said Lucius entering the room, Narcissa behind him.
"Good morning, dears," said Kalaryen smiling at the newlyweds. Perhaps a bit longer than needed.
"Mother, please," said Lucius pulling a chair out for Narcissa.
"Nothing!" she exclaimed. "I say nothing and already he accuses me of mischief."
Byron lowered his paper slightly and frowned at his wife.
"For the love of Merlin, woman," Byron said exasperatedly. "Leave them alone."
"Hmmph," said Kalaryen sipping her tea, her brow furrowed slightly. Byron flipped the page back upright so that it blocked his face.
Lucius pulled out a seat and took his place near Narcissa. He pulled a wand out of his jacket and waved it at the table. The silver teapot began to rise and poured tea into a delicate
porcelain cup rising to meet the stream of hot black liquid. Two sugar cubes rose out of a crystal bowl and clinked gently into it. It drifted through the air and came to settle gently into
"Thank you," Narcissa smiled shyly. Her foot however had slipped out of one of those black shoes and was now sliding up the trouser leg of Lucius. He reached out and picked up a
meringue. His eyes went to her and he raised his eyebrows as he took a bite.
"You shall be leaving this afternoon," Byron said from behind his paper.
"The Southern Estate is lovely this time of year," Kalaryen said peering at Narcissa over the rim of her teacup. "You'll have plenty of time to spend outdoors."
Byron gave her a warning look, but Kalaryen sipped her tea quietly.
"The flowers in the garden will be lovely, I'm sure," said Narcissa politely. "You were quite gracious to offer us the manor."
"Anything to give you a foot up," Byron said from behind his paper. He lowered it. "I hope that you'll be able to remain focused without menial distractions."
"I'm sure we'll be just fine," said Narcissa putting a hand on Lucius leg before he opened his mouth. "Though things will be much easier. Thank you."
Byron cleared his throat and went back to his paper.
Kalaryen looked at Narcissa with raised eyebrows, impressed.
The flying carpet Lucius and Narcissa rode on was a creamy white. Her personal case with all the compartments was beside her, as was a small brown trunk of his. His cape swirled
around both their shoulders and he was whispering in her ear.
"Look at them," Kalaryen said to Byron on their carpet, a few yards behind. He shifted on the red pile and looked at her. He was about to say something but stopped. He smiled down on
his wife and kissed her. "You give me that look, but it's true. I made a good match."
"You made a good match," Byron said before he kissed her forehead.
Narcissa spotted a spire over the tops of the trees and pointed to it. Lucius tightened his arm around her waist. The spire turned into a steeple, rising out of the center of a large manor,
either side flanked by shorter towers. Gargoyles peered out of alcoves tucked under eaves. The rain gutters looked as if they were designed to divert water into artistic patterns when it
rained. The windows all had large wooden shutters and some had panes of colored glass set into alchemical patterns. Large black oak double doors approached as they coasted onto the
drive and came to a stop. Narcissa looked up.
It was gigantic. Nearly three times the size of the house she had been brought up in. The large gray manor looked as if it had been carved out of a single stone. It probably had been. The
look on her face must have betrayed her thoughts.
"It's fully staffed with elves," Lucius murmured into her hair. "No need to worry."
"It's huge," Narcissa breathed. "Your parents are very generous."
"We never use it, dear," came a deep voice behind her and she turned to face Byron Malfoy. "Fill it with children."
Narcissa blushed under Kalaryen's twinkling gaze.
"Let me show you around," Kalaryen said putting a hand on Narcissas arm and leading her away from the men.
They started with the walking gardens with the fountains and a giant hedge maze, which led to the rose gardens, a thousand different varieties, some of a color and scent that Narcissa
had never seen before. Finally the roses turned to orchids and peonies, lilacs and thistle, finally turning into a vegetable and herb garden and finally leading into the kitchens.
The kitchen was huge and bustling with over a dozen elves, each clamoring for the chance to bow or curtsey for their new mistress. The oven was large enough to cook for a banquet and
the larder was stocked enough for the two of them to eat for at least a year. A loaf of baked bread was cooling on the counter and a small elf was scooping butter out of a butter churn and
into clay crocks.
"Would you be hungry, mistress?" a small elf piped up at her heels. She turned to see one of the smallest elves she has ever seen standing behind her. "I can prepare you a platter if
mistress is wanting?"
"No," she said slowly. "But thank you, little one." Narcissa looked at Kalaryen. "This one a bit young?"
"Dobby is always wanting to help out," said a female elf. "He's a little young but very enthusiastic. He'll be a hard worker, just like his parents."
"Line wiped out?" Narcissa asked.
"Many elves were lost in the preparation of the protections on this manor," the elf bobbed. "Dobby's parents were among them."
"Well, he'll adjust with all his new responsibilities," Narcissa said with a smile and a pat on his small head. She straightened up and looked at Kalaryen. "You have to show me more or
the day will be lost before we even begin."
They made their way through the dining hall, that coincidentally had room enough to fit the better part of the Ministry if the need arose. Kalaryen showed her where the stemware and
cutlery were kept, and how the enchantments on the locks worked. Where the linens were packed away and how the stoneware was stored.
The floor of the ballroom was a single flawless piece of hematite, polished and nearly sparkling The walls and pillars were alabaster. The ceiling was alabaster as well, but the constellations
were set with sapphires glittering far above the floor. Narcissa suspected they glowed softly when the lights were lowered.
They traipsed through the entrance hall, with its spiraling staircase to the higher levels. The drawing room, with its tea service and writing materials. The library, that seemed stuffed full of tomes Narcissa had heard about, but never in a thousand years thought that she'd be allowed to touch, let alone possess. She lifted a tome called Abnormal Possessions and How to Avoid Them.
“Quite an interesting read,” Kalaryen said. “You’ll probably enjoy most of these. Some of them even cover the unspeakables.”
“Incredible,” Narcissa breathed as she placed it back on the shelf.
The second floor revealed numerous guest bedrooms and sitting rooms appropriate for a more intimate setting. Narcissa looked at the fine fabrics covering the walls and beds, the rich brocades and deep velvets drew the attendant into them, making her want to become part of the room. Putting her at ease and comfort.
Kalaryen walked to the end of a hallway on the second floor of the west wing. A large stone snake curled around itself and poised to strike. She reached out and stroked the nose of the beast.
“Malfoy,” she whispered. The mouth of the snake opened and it rose straight upwards, stretching toward the ceiling, a portion of which was moving aside. The snake seemed to be getting thicker, like it was finished feeding, and when it stopped moving, a door opened in its side. Kalaryen stepped inside and motioned Narcissa to join her. She stepped into the stone snake and rested her hand on a cool brass bar inside. The floor began to rise slowly upwards. Narcissa assumed they were going to the top of the East Tower.
The room that opened up to them was gigantic. At the far end a deep blue velvet canopied bed lay. The curtains were drawn, due to the sun hitting it, Narcissa supposed. She stepped into the room and her feet sunk into a deep cream colored carpet. Large windows surrounded the circular room, and a large black marble fireplace was set into one wall. A large portrait hung over it.
“Byron’s father,” said Kalaryen. “Quite a formidable man. Terrified me when he came to arrange our marriage.”
Narcissa looked up into stern gray eyes, even more pronounced by the rigid cap of steel colored hair molded to his head. His nose was straight and long, and he almost seemed to be looking down it at her. She shivered as the magical painting quirked an eyebrow at her and seemed to sneer.
“What a pleasant man,” Narcissa remarked.
“He was a piece of work,” Kalaryen said. “Gave me a book to keep the accounts straight when we got married.”
“I think you give a much better gift,” said Narcissa before she could stop herself.
“I would hope so,” said Kalaryen with a smirk. “Did you try the page that folds out yet?”
“”No,” said Narcissa blushing. “Didn’t get around to it.”
“Young people,” said Kalaryen shaking her head and walking to a small bookshelf near the bed. “Absolutely no patience.” She motioned to the shelf.
“What is all that?” Narcissa asked.
“More personal books,” explained Kalaryen. “Ones you wouldn’t want guests to necessarily see.”
“I could think of a few downstairs that I wouldn’t want them to see,” said Narcissa, wondering what was on the shelf. Titles like Serpentine Seduction, Aphrodisiacs for the Unwilling, and Spicing Up Special Occasions popped out at her. She breathed in sharply.
“Oh, please,” Kalaryen said with a wave of her hand. “You’re married now. You will have no secrets from each other.” She picked up a book form the shelf. “See? They don’t bite.”
Kalaryen flipped a battered copy of a book of aphrodisiacs to a dog eared page.
“This one is for fatigue,” Kalaryen explained. “If he’s going to be pulling all those late nights at the Ministry you’ll need this unless you want to be neglected.”
There was a slight hum from the stone snake lift. Kalaryen placed the book back on the shelf and walked over to a window before Byron and Lucius rose to the room.
“Admiring the view?” asked Byron with a smile.
“It is lovely this time of year,” Narcissa said looking at Kalaryen with a small smile.
Lucius looked at Narcissa oddly. Then his eyes trailed to the bookshelf and he turned pink. His father didn’t notice, instead he went to Kalaryen’s side and wrapped an arm around her waist and gazed out the window.
“The children need to settle in, dear,” Kalaryen said softly as Lucius went to Narcissa and kissed the back of her hand.
Byron whispered something into the ear of Kalaryen that caused her to laugh.
“We’ll be apperating now, children,” Byron said turning to them. “The elves should have you settled in quickly.”
“Thank you again for all your kindness,” said Narcissa politely with a small bob of her head.
Kalaryen embraced her before returning to Byron’s side.
“Just owl if you need anything,” She said tearfully looking at Lucius.
“He’ll be fine, dear,” said Byron more softly than Narcissa thought he was capable of. And then they were gone.
Narcissas gaze traveled the room.
“It’s all a bit overwhelming,” she said before her eyes settled on Lucius. “I don’t know where to begin.”
“I’ll show you where to begin,” he said with a twinkle in his eye, leading her to he bed.