Draco was tired. He’d been pacing around his bedroom all night. He’d written over thirty drafts of the letter and when he’d finally sent it to her with the necklace he couldn’t sleep because all he could think about was whether or not Ginny would ever wear it or not.

Up until just before he left Hogwarts, Draco had really been looking forward for the holiday. He’d hoped it would be the best Christmas ever. He’d even gone to Dumbledore and asked if there wasn’t some way to continue the game over the break.

It amazed him! Just hearing her say those two words as they’d walked out of the Great Hall, those ridiculously redundant words that he’d read so often. “Mad Fun!” As soon as she’d said them he had stopped. He’d been speechless. As he stood gaping at her his mind frantically went to every scrap of information Vaina ever sent and connected it to Ginny Weasley. It all fit. Over protective older siblings, not having any house elves, her brother having a friend that ‘liked’ her but in whom she wasn’t interested in ‘anymore’. He had been a blind fool. How could he have been so blind? What was he going to do now? He felt as if he’d been punched in the gut.

Sitting in his common room later that night, he’d tried to keep his mind tuned to the on-going party - no one threw a party like the Slytherins - but all he was thinking about was strategy. What was the best way to resign without exposing himself? The answer was staring him in the face. He’d resign from the game as soon as he got the parchment the next morning.

His resolve proved less than ironclad as he sat before the parchment the next morning. He couldn’t do it. He knew she deserved an explanation, but he just couldn’t write one right now. When it was actually Ginny he was writing to instead of a Ginny-faced figment of his imagination he didn’t know what to say.

He slowly walked into the common room, but he really didn’t see much. Everyone and everything in the common room passed as a blur, until he saw Pansy and her snarky smirk. Then he was back in fine form. Before even leaving for breakfast he told off three first year girls for giggling too loudly in the common room. Once he was in the Great Hall Draco surveyed the room and was seconds away from docking points from a too happy Longbottom and his girlfriend when he saw ‘her’ enter the hall. He bit back his nasty words and strutted back to the Slytherin table before she could reach her own.

His surly mood turned more to misery as he reminded himself of what he was going to have to do, and he only looked up at the Gryffindor table once. He saw her staring at him. Her sad, beautiful, brown eyes hurt him so much he had to look away. He knew she’d been crying because she hadn’t received her letter from Bleddri. It was awful being the one to make her cry. He loved making her blush, or spit fire at him, but making her sad, making her cry made him feel terrible. He just looked back to his plate and felt like he was dying inside. He couldn’t take it for very long, and since he wasn’t eating anyway, he quickly stood up and walked out of the hall.

As the 7th year Slytherins were the last to floo out of Snape’s fireplace he had enough time to work himself from miserable to utterly depressed. Crabbe even wished him a Happy Christmas but Draco merely nodded and grumpily said, “Malfoy Manor - Front Entrance Hall,” before disappearing into green flames.


His mother was there waiting for him. She’d received so many light-hearted letters from him this term that she was really looking forward to all the fun they were going to have this Christmas.

It was their second without Lucius, and this one, she hoped, would be even better than the last one.

It wasn’t as if Lucius had been a big monster who beat them or anything. He was rarely physical at all, let alone physically abusive. But, he did have a sharp tongue and very very high expectations. Draco could never do anything to please him. Not Quiddich, not grades, nothing! Narcissa knew that she overindulged her son because of it. Overindulgence only caused him to grow up a vain and spoiled child. Every year before Christmas had been full of gifts… but not much joy and love.

Last year, without Lucius, mother and son actually stayed up all night and just talked. They got to know one another. Really ‘know’ each other. It had been Narcissa’s best Christmas, probably Draco’s too. She’d hoped so anyway.

As soon as she saw his face erupt from the flames she knew something was wrong. She’d seen that face enough over the last seventeen years. Every time Lucius told off Draco for not living up to what he ‘should have been’ as a ‘Malfoy’. It was a look akin to despair… pure and utter defeat.

He leaned down and kissed her cheek and went to his room without saying anything but a very quiet “Happy Christmas Mum. I’ll be down for dinner,”

She didn’t ask him what was wrong, knowing that he’d need to figure some things out on his own. If he thought she could help him then he would ask her.

About two days before Christmas he’d done just that. He’d gone to her chamber and looked at her with his little boy eyes and said, “Mum, I just didn’t know what to do.” She’d hugged him and sat him down on her sitting-room sofa, conjured up some hot chocolate (he loved hot chocolate) and asked him to tell her everything.

Draco explained about the game and how he’d really grown to care about the girl he’d written to. He admitted to his mother that she’d become his best friend, even without knowing who she was. He trusted her with thoughts and feelings that he’d hardly admitted to himself. He’d trusted her so completely that he’d even told her about the love of his life… the girl he’d loved since he was twelve. He could hardly believe the irony of it all… here he was, the Prince of Slytherin, where you were taught not the trust anyone EVER and he’d succumbed to a silly game.

Narcissa could almost see where this was going, and though she didn’t want to interrupt she couldn’t help but say, “The red-head in the picture?”

Draco looked at her in shock. “Yes, she’s a red-head… and I do have a picture of her. How did you know? No one knows. I snagged one of Creevey’s when I gave him a detention at the beginning of 5th year. He’s a camera-happy buffoon.”

“That Christmas I went into your room to drop off something. You were in the shower and half finished packing for school. I saw it then, at the top of your trunk. I just thought she was probably a girlfriend we hadn’t met… maybe even of a different Hogwart’s house, so I didn’t mention it until now because… because of your father. I didn’t want to get you into any undue trouble.”

“Mum, she’s a Gryffindor so you did the right thing. And… Father knew who she was. If he’d seen the picture I would have been in a lot more than trouble. She’s definitely not someone he’d be very keen on me being seen with. She’s a Weasley but she’s not and never has been my girlfriend.” Draco kept talking and he finally got to that last night at school. He explained that by hearing those words coming out of Ginny Weasley’s mouth he knew. He knew that the girl he’d been dreaming of for the past five years, the girl he’d risked a lot to have a picture of in a home with Lucius Malfoy walking about in, was indeed the person he’d been sharing all his deepest fears and feelings. He said he’d never been more scared in his life, even after all the dark things he’d seen in his house… where scary things were a part of daily life.

After hearing the whole story Narcissa surprised him. She laughed. He looked at her, appalled, “Mother, am I so ridiculous that you can laugh at my miserable love life?”

She straitened at this… “Draco honey, no. I was laughing because I just found out my son’s in love… and with his best friend at that! Your father kept bemoaning that you’d do just that someday… though at the time I think Vincent was your best friend. I’m sure Lucius would be very relieved.” She put her arms around him in an embrace, his face still unreadable. “Sweetheart, there are things we can do. Do not despair. And think… at least now she is someone you love the inside of as well as the outside. You might never have gotten to know the girl if this hadn’t happened.”

Draco managed a smile. “I’m not so sure Father would rather I love Ginny. She is a Weasley after all, all that red hair you know… I’m sure he would have preferred Crabbe.” She stifled a laugh and he continued, “Well, I’m not sure there is anything to do, if she knew that ‘handsome knight’ she’d been writing to was a Malfoy she’d probably poke her eyes our with her hand-me-down quill.” As he said it, he remembered the portrait of the platinum haired knight he’d rescued from the rubbish bin and saved at the bottom of his trunk. Almost instantaneously the thought was shoved back into the deeper parts of his mind. He just couldn’t fathom why someone as wonderful as Ginny Weasley, who was probably going to end up with the Savior of the Wizarding world, would have drawn him that way.

“Well, I can hardly believe my extremely handsome and talented son doesn’t have more charms to recommend him. Now, what did you get this young lady for Christmas?”

“Uhh… I hadn’t really thought about a gift yet. I was going to just look with you during the break, and then I’d planned on resigning from the game so I didn’t do any shopping.”

“Well, you do owe her an explanation if you’re quitting, and I think a nice gift to send along with it would be very appropriate. You love this girl Draco, for Merlin’s sake, you need to get her something to show it before leaving her forever!”

“Alright… alright Mum. Do you think we could go into London tomorrow then? I have a few presents to buy… my second favourite girl in the world needs another one for being such a good listener.”

Her laughter rang around the room and they settled in to discuss what gift would make Ginny’s eyes water and heart flutter. Draco had such a fun time laughing with his mother that the dull pain he’d been feeling since school was nearly forgotten… until he got into bed and was forced to relive the pain all over again that night.


Muggle London hardly knew what hit it. They started out early and Draco’s mother dragged him to every possible shop through Mayfair and down into Knightsbridge. She’d even managed to buy several things herself. That didn’t surprise Draco in the least, but what did surprise him was how very secretive she was being about several of them. Usually she showed off every thing she bought to get his opinion.

Finally, down New Bond Street, amid the most famous Muggle jewelry stores in the world, Draco found it. In a shop he’d never heard of called Cartier he found a silver letter ‘G’ with diamonds and pale green stones running down the middle of it. Draco knew Ginny’s birthday was August 11th, and that made this almost the perfect gift for Ginny.

He’d learned about the ‘Eternal Fflame’ Charm much the same way Ginny did. Revising during his 6th year. The classroom instruction had been purely theoretical, Professor Flitwick didn’t see the need for the students to go around charming things as acts of remembrance. To Draco, just knowing how to do something wasn’t the same as actually doing it, so he’d managed to charm one of his tiepins to erupt in flame if he ever touched it. At the time, Draco really couldn’t see the practical application for such a charm, but he was really glad he remembered it now.

The trouble with the charm was that in order for the heat-less flame to work only when Ginny touched the metal, he’d need a piece of ‘her’. He mulled the problem over for a while, and then had a great idea. He quickly called one of the many house elves that lived at the manor, gave her directions and sent her to the Burrow. In relatively quick time, the little elf returned with what looked like the contents of half a rubbish bin.

“Minnie? What’s with all the trash?”

“Mast, sir, it’s the red hairded girls’… Tissues. She cried-ed into them Minnie thinks. Minnie knows the master needs something of the red hairded girls’… and tears is something sir.”

Draco looked slightly ill. “Yes, thank you Minnie. These will be fine. You can go now.”

“Yes sir.” And she popped out of sight.

Draco felt horrible. She’d been crying, and a lot. He’d seen her miserable in the Great Hall, but he hadn’t thought she’d been crying all week. She was with her family and friends. He thought she’d soon get back to normal. He was after all, just a pen pal. Seeing the huge mound of cried-into tissue and knowing he was the reason she was crying… he just felt awful! He only hoped she’d feel every bit of how much he cared for her when she felt the flame that only she could produce.

After the charm was set, he took to writing the letter. It was hard to write. He knew it was going to be a long night, so he asked his mother if she would mind waiting until the afternoon to open presents the following day. She patted him on the back and scratched it while reassuring him that Christmas Luncheon was planned for 1 pm and presents could wait until afterwards. He could rest and have a bit of a lie-in.

He knew he’d have to sleep so he’d be at least semi-pleasant for his mother at lunch. At nearly half five in the morning he finally fell into a dreamless sleep.


Narcissa was worried for him. She knew he loved this girl. She hurt for him, knowing fully well why disclosing his name to her was a huge risk and would probably end in disaster. She hated to see him in such pain and hoped things would work out to make him happy. He’d had so little of ‘real’ happiness in his life.

Because she knew Draco wasn’t coming down for breakfast, Narcissa was content to have tea in the breakfast room at about half eleven. There was at least an hour and a half until the house elves would have luncheon ready, so she made herself comfortable and settled down with the Christmas edition of Witch Weekly.

Quite suddenly, a familiar red head appeared in the fireplace. Narcissa could see her scanning the room for anyone to address. Curiously, she watched the girl before making herself known. She looked at the beautiful young lady and knew immediately who she was. The face had changed, had grown up, but she was the same girl she’d seen two years earlier in Draco’s trunk.

Then, the girl saw the older woman and turned, what only could be assumed was a bright red colour as she stood there in the green flames and began to stutter, “Oh… excuse me Mrs. Malfoy… I… uh…. I’m Ginny…”

Narcissa smiled as she stood to greet the girl, “Of course you are my dear. I’m so glad to finally meet you after hearing so much about you. I see my dear Draco was not exaggerating when he told me what a beautiful young woman you are Miss Weasley.”

Ginny flushed even deeper than before upon hearing her name. Narcissa noticed the beautiful bit of fire wrapped around the girl’s neck and her own heart glowed.

“Won’t you come in and join me for tea Miss Weasley? I do feel dreadful that Draco is not awake to join us. He had a very rough night last night… as I’m sure you can imagine.” Narcissa smiled broader as she walked to the hearth and offered her hand to help the young woman out.

Instead of a hand, Ginny Weasley placed a small box and letter into her hand and said, “No. No thank you ma’am. I didn’t tell my mother I was Flooing… I just wanted to make sure that Malfoy…. That Draco got this today, and our owl is still out delivering Christmas Cards. Thank you anyway though… and Happy Christmas Mrs. Malfoy.” She smile sheepishly and then popped out of sight.

Narcissa held the gift and wondered whether to wake him or let him open it with his other gifts after lunch. “Oh who am I kidding?” She asked herself with a laugh as she headed up towards Draco’s room. “He would probably hex me, or at least one of the house elves into oblivion if he knew she’d sent over a gift and I made him wait.”

She knocked on his heavy chamber door and a very groggy Draco opened it, wearing nothing but a pair of green and black pajama pants. He looked embarrassed when he’d realized what he’d done, and he grabbed his dressing gown off his chair before asking her if she was alright.

“Oh yes dear. I just thought that ‘this’ particular gift couldn’t wait until after luncheon… after all, the red-head who delivered it Floo’d over without permission so it must be important.” She lifted the box to him.

He gaped at her but didn’t take the box. It was like the bottom dropped out of his stomach. He knew what was in the box… the necklace. He just couldn’t bring himself to take it from his mother.

Narcissa, once she realized why he wasn’t moving, put her hand on his shoulder and said, “Draco, it’s not what you’re thinking. She had ‘it’ on. It was lovely with her firey hair. The charm worked perfectly!”

“She’d… she’d worn it? Even when she knew who it was from? Wait a minute…. How did she know whom it was from? Oh Merlin! I think I am going to be sick again.” Subconsciously, his hands brushed nervously through his blond locks.

“Son, just open it. Maybe she’ll explain it all in the letter.” With that, Narcissa put the gift along with the bit of creamy parchment on his desk, next to Ginny’s waving image, and walked out of the room, smiling as she closed the door, only stopping to say, “Draco dear, I’ll push back luncheon until half two so you’ll have time to… groom yourself. Happy Christmas dear!” She closed the door before he could thank her.

Draco stood, staring at the box for what seemed like hours. All sorts of thoughts sped through his head. She’d worn the necklace? She’d delivered this ‘here’… herself, to ‘my’ house? She knows it’s me? That didn’t repulse her? Hmmmm… why doesn’t that repulse her? Wow. How did she know it was me?

He knew the only way to get the answers was to read the letter, but he was afraid. He warily eyed the letter. He recognized the curvy feminine handwriting from all his correspondence with Vaina, but this letter clearly said, Dear Draco, Love Ginny. He hardly knew he was opening the letter.

Draco Malfoy you are a prat! Yes, ‘you’ read that right! I know all about you ‘Bleddri’. I’ve known since that last night at Hogwarts, when you bowled down half the Hufflepuffs while staring at me. Actually, I feel kind of barmy for not realizing it sooner. Something had been bothering me after seeing your face in the Great Hall, and then it hit me…
My best friend is Draco Malfoy!

I figured you knew about me too… that’s why you didn’t write, but I admit, I thought it was because you were disgusted that you’d been writing to a Weasley.

But, after reading your letter, it begs the question. If you know me the way you say you do, you’d know that your last name wouldn’t stop me from writing you. You are NOT your father any more than I am my parents, friends, or family. I’ve met the ‘real’ Draco, over the last 4 months and I know you’re heart… it isn’t empty. I know what you are… you’re not the complete moron you pretend to be. And I don’t despise you, I care about you.

This was more than a game to me too.

I have a few questions for you though. I’m interested in this girl you’ve loved from second year on… I seem to recall meeting a good looking blond git at Flourish and Blott’s my first year… and I’ve thought about him quite a bit over the last two years. I haven’t been able to get him… you… out of my head at all.

What exactly would you tell me about how you feel if you had been put in Gryffindor? It is my understanding that of the four houses, ours are the most alike. I know you’re more like me than you’d like to admit… or maybe it’s me that’s more like you.

That being said, since you’re resigning from the game, so am I. Despite the fact that I really need the extra credit for History of Magic. You’ll probably need to tutor me in History… since it’s your fault I’m not getting full credit for the game and my only other plausible option is Hermione… and her tutoring makes me want to slit my wrists… seriously!

I’ll be writing my letters: Dear Draco/ Love Ginny from now on, and they’ll probably be delivered at the breakfast table with the rest of the post… in front of the other Slytherins. Maybe I’d even be so cheeky to write on red and gold stationary! ;)

Should you ever want to write to me, you could use an owl and post me like a normal person. I don’t give a damn what the other Gryffindors think… so you shouldn’t either. Be prepared.

And lastly, the necklace. ‘Should I ever wish to wear it?’ You barmy git! Of course I am going to wear it! It’s beautiful. I love it! You spent WAY too much money on it, but thank you for thinking of me. It was lovely. Just out of curiosity… do I want to know what you swiped of mine to get this amazing charm to work?

I bought you gift the day after we got out of school… in a shop you’d be delighted that I stepped foot in but that I refuse to name… my mother would kill me if she knew! I wasn’t brave enough to just send it to your house… and since you didn’t sign up for holiday delivery I had to wait until you stopped being a prat… well, sorta stopped.

Anyway, I hope you like it. The sword has tiny writing… a tiny ‘G’ that I think is supposed to stand for Gryffindor (it’s obviously Godrick Gryffindor’s sword) but it could just as easily stand for Ginny -- if that grosses you out less. I’ll have none of this, ‘if you want to wear it’ rubbish because you’d better wear it! I put a lot of thought into it… it’s meant to be ‘us’ you know! (In case the obvious escaped you…)

I’ll talk to you soon,
Love Ginny

PS - Please apologize to your mother and any other guests you might have had when I barged in uninvited this morning. (I am anticipating her shocked face - My hair is pretty bright for you people) I hope she doesn’t think I am a mad escapee from St. Mungo’s or anything.

Happy Christmas Draco! Love, Ginny

He was blown away! He couldn’t believe what he’d just read. He looked at the box and then opened it hungrily. Inside sat a cloak pin, the kind that clasped the top of a cloak together. It was a silver sword with a snake coiled around its hilt and blade. It looked like an antique… one you’d buy in a dusty old shop in Diagon Alley… probably down Knockturn Alley. How did she find something so perfect? He loved it!

Aside from all the happy feelings he had inside, he was mentally kicking himself. How could he have questioned her integrity? Of course, after all their letters he should have known that names wouldn’t’ matter to her… but the seed of doubt had been planted. He decided that the fact that she was a Muggle-loving Weasley was what made her so special. It was like she was a missing part of his life and he just realized he needed her to breathe.

He couldn’t stop smiling as he got out of the shower and dressed for lunch. His mother would have a field day asking questions… she wasn’t the nosey type, but she’d never let him get through lunch without knowing everything… not when even he couldn’t hide the broad smile on his face.

The pin looked perfect on his black robes trimmed with silver. He told himself that he’d have to write her after lunch… Did he dare send an owl to her house? He’d probably have an army of redheaded males, led by Scarhead himself break down the Manor’s doors if he did. Hmmm. He knew he’d chance it. Ginny was the only redhead in whose opinion he really cared about anyway. “This turned out to be an amazing Christmas after all!” He thought happily, and he went down to luncheon.
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