Small Beginnings Chapter 6
Lucius lay on his back staring at the white ceiling above him. A sheet of blonde hair covered the pillow beside him. She was sleeping. He smiled gently. Then he pulled on a gold rope hanging from the bed three times. A plate of crackers and cheese appeared beside him, followed by a carafe of wine. The quiet clinking was enough to rouse Narcissa.
"Food again?" she asked.
"Maybe you're not hungry, but I am," he chuckled. He noticed a piece of cheese disappear quickly and was amused. He rose from the bed and cut himself a hunk of cheese.
"Alright, Hungry," she said and snaked another piece of cheese.
"Do you want to see the grounds today?" he asked, pulling on fur lined robes. "I have to report back to the Ministry tonight and won't have much time to show you them after."
"I'm sure," said Narcissa, rising from the bed and stretching. "I think I have to see your mothers’ garden and write to her complementing her on it. I think she'd be offended if I didn't."
"You have the measure of her," said Lucius, picking up a strawberry out of a fruit bowl that had appeared beside him. "She can be a bit pushy at times."
"I think she's delightful," said Narcissa, taking a bite of the fruit her husband held out for her. He raised an eyebrow.
"Alright, predictable then," she smiled.
“That’s a bit more like it,” he said drinking deeply from a goblet.
Narcissa rose from the bed and walked over to the window. Lucius found himself slightly stunned. Her skin was flawless and seemed to almost glow in the afternoon sun. She reached out a hand and pushed the small paned window open. Her small blonde curls twisted in the breeze and she closed her eyes and inhaled.
Lucius realized he was staring at her and suddenly felt like a naughty boy caught peeping through a fence. He rose and went to her.
If you like the windows open,” he began, sweeping his robe off and draping it over her shoulders, “they can remain open. It’s been enchanted so small bugs won’t fly in.”
“I think it might get to be a bit musty in here if we don’t,” Narcissa said, tilting her head in his direction.
“Ah,” he said, not really knowing what to say.
She turned to face him and looked him up and down. He blushed slightly. Although she didn’t seem to have a problem standing naked in front of a window, he felt slightly uneasy. She pulled the robe around her shoulders tighter and walked over to her trunk, leaving him standing there.
Narcissa kneeled and unlocked a compartment in the top of the trunk. She pulled out two silver rings and handed Lucius one. She slid the other onto the middle finger of her right hand it was set with two stones, one green, and the other red. He noticed it glow slightly as she slid it into place.
He slid his on and found it to be a perfect fit.
“What is it?” he asked.
“If either of us is in danger, the corresponding stone will glow,” she explained. “When we produce offspring, the stones can be reset to allow for more.”
“Very clever,” said Lucius. “Wherever did you get them?”
“My father made them,” said Narcissa. “Jewelry making has always been a hobby of his and he thought he could finally put it to practical use.”
“I hope we never have to use them,” said Lucius running a finger over the stones softly.
“These roses are huge!” said Narcissa, her feet stepping softly on the deep green moss that seemed to cover every available surface in the garden. She buried her nose in one and inhaled deeply.
“They should be,” said Lucius amusedly. “She’s been working on an engorgement charm that would make them big, but not overdone for as long as I can remember.”
“Your mother has quite a talent,” said Narcissa nodding at the roses in approval.
Lucius smirked at her and pointed to a wall that seemed to have been repaired. Part of the stonework looked a little newer than and not quite as weathered as the rest of the wall.
“That,” he said, “was attempt number 35. Looked like something out of Jack and the Beanstalk.”
“How long ago was that?” Narcissa laughed.
“The summer I turned 12,” said Lucius smiling. “It was kind of neat.”
“You climbed it then?” said Narcissa cocking an eyebrow.
Lucius rolled up a sleeve and she saw a faint white scar.
“I just wish she’d thought to de-thorn them first,” he grinned sheepishly.
Narcissa snickered and walked over to a small stone bench. There were two small grooves worn into the earth in front of it. She prodded them with a toe.
“What was this from?” Narcissa asked.
“Mother often did her needlework out here,” Lucius said, taking a sprig of heather and weaving it into Narcissas hair. “Her frame was pretty heavy.”
“That’s a very good idea,” said Narcissa looking around at the climbing ivy and large assortment of roses. “It was probably very peaceful when little boys weren’t falling out of oversized bushes.”
Lucius let out a hearty laugh and pulled her to her feet.
“You’ll find out soon enough,” he said wrapping his arms around her and burying his nose in her hair.
Her arms went around him and she pulled slightly away so she could gaze into his eyes.
“Maybe I will,” she said, smiling.