He wiped the glass with his towel, but the reflection did not change. He, Draco Malfoy, had a huge, deforming wrinkle, right across his forehead.
Categories: Completed Short Stories Characters:
Jun 16, 2004 Updated:
Jun 16, 2004
For Combatting the Signs of Aging by Mynuet
It was a morning, much like any other. He had woken up beside his wife, who had grumbled and turned over to burrow in the stolen blanket when he'd nuzzled her neck. All the years together had made it clear that she wasn't a morning person, but he still couldn't resist starting his day by taking in the softness of her hair, the warm scent of her skin and the inner satisfaction that came from knowing that she was his.
Cold without a shred of blanket left to cover him, he padded over to the bathroom, waving a hand to turn on the shower. Making sure there was a fresh towel available, as the kids had a habit of leaving his bathroom in disarray if they used it for any reason, he was about to step in the shower when he saw something odd through the steam collecting on the mirror. Frowning, he stepped closer and leaned in to his reflection. It couldn't be...
But there it was. He ran a hand over the mirror, to check whether there was a hair or a crack on its surface that was distorting his reflection, but his hand skimmed over smooth glass. Thinking that it might be the steam itself, he wiped the glass with his towel, but the reflection did not change. He, Draco Malfoy, had a huge, deforming wrinkle, right across his forehead.
It was hideous. It was completely destroying the purity of his profile. It was something no Malfoy should have to bear. It was... Getting deeper the more he scowled.
Stretching the muscles in his face, he pondered. Glamours were ephemeral things; you never knew when one would fail and leave you standing in a cocktail party wearing a house coat, as had happened to Great-aunt Philomena. Anyway they only covered up what existed, and he'd know that the deformity was under there. Transfiguring the skin of his forehead to a smoother shape was theoretically possible, but if it went wrong he might find himself with a forehead made of leather, which he didn't think would improve matters at all. He could consult his father's spellbooks; surely Lucius must have done something to keep his skin so smooth. But that would mean going out past the bedroom, and he wasn't at all sure he wanted to allow Ginny to see him like this.
Wait! Hadn't Ginny said something about needing all those damn lotions so that she wouldn't turn into a wrinkled hag? Draco tore open the cabinet under the sink and started rummaging through the bottles that he had insisted Ginny not use if there was the slightest possibility she wanted to be kissed, given that he had trouble confining himself once he'd started and the one mouthful he'd gotten of lotioned skin was enough to put him off of it for life.
He read the labels on all of the bottles, some tall and fluted, some squat and round, all seeming to use a lot of pink in their packaging. Finally he picked a green (and pink) glass bottle which promised to remove ten years from his age and leave his skin plump and smooth in seconds and upended it over his palm, slathering the liquid lavishly over his face. He didn't feel any different, so next he chose a small, clear tub of something jelly-like that promised to firm, smooth, and moisturize his skin while imparting a youthful radiance.
He had just finished smearing some on his forehead and started to contemplate whether he needed something else when his sexy wife purred, "Darling, just how long are you going--"
She stopped abruptly as she took him in, naked and smeared with cosmetic potions, from where she stood at the door. Telling himself fiercely that only Weasleys blush, he swiped at his face with the towel, then regretted it as some of the goo went into his eye.
At least howling in pain and attempting to flood his eyeballs with water from the sink got him out of having to make immediate explanations. He'd just about decided to not mention it at all and try to bluff his way through, possibly by using an obliviate once he got his wand, when her arms wrapped around his waist and he felt her drop a kiss between his shoulder blades. "Finally realized you have crow's feet?"
"I do not!" said a scandalized Draco.
She chuckled against his skin, the feel of it sending shivers down his spine, before reaching out to wipe steam off of the fogged mirror. "Yes, you do. See?"
Her fingers delicately traced the corner of one of his eyes, and he stared at the mirror in horror. How could he not have seen it before? There they were, hideous, grotesque folds in his skin,fanning out from his once-perfect eyes. He frowned and the line in his forehead returned, much to his consternation. He'd gone to bed the night before in the prime of manhood, and now this morning, look at him! "I'm ugly."
His unfeeling wretch of a wife laughed. "Don't pout, Draco. At least you're not losing your hair, like Ron, or gaining a huge pot belly, like Harry."
"Yes, well, they were always trolls," Draco said.
Ginny shook her head, turning him around to face her. "Draco, what do you see?"
"I see the girl I married," he said, not sure where this line of questioning was going, and a bit miffed that she would try to draw attention away from the important fact that he was falling apart.
She smiled, but said, "Look again. See these?" Taking his hand in hers, she brought his fingers up to trace the fine laugh lines around her eyes and mouth. "And these." She took his hand down to her stomach, where she drew their joined hands over the stretch marks that three children had caused, then back up to her breasts. "Nursing certainly changed my breasts from the ones I had when you first decided you wanted to explore what a Weasley's tits looked like."
"They're still absolute perfection," he said, pulling his hand from hers when she would have taken it away. "But I may have to do some more studying, just to make sure."
"So I'm not ugly and hideous, despite having gained a lot of wrinkles?" she asked, leaning into his touch.
He arched an eyebrow at her and she shivered. "This is one of those times when I'm supposed to grow as a person, isn't it?"
Ginny grinned and ran her hands down his front. "I certainly like it when you grow."
"You know," he said, half in a gasp over the way she was stroking him. "I think I may be too old and feeble to be trusted to shower on my own. You'll definitely have to help."
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