"He never listens to me," Ginny said with a pout.
Her husband sneered. "I listen when you say something worthwhile."
"Do you see?" Ginny turned to the third person in the room, who seemed to be trying to disappear into the overstuffed chair she sat on.
As the woman was a muggle, the likelihood of disappearance was low. She seemed to realize this and sat up, clearing her throat as she looked quickly at her watch. "Now, Mr. Malfoy, why would you want to hurt Ginny by saying that?"
"Because it's true," Draco said, not a trace of apology in his voice.
Ginny gave a little shriek and threw her hands in the air. "This is exactly why we fight all the time. You never think you're wrong!"
"And you do? If I've heard it once, I've heard it a thousand times!" Draco pitched his voice impossibly high and twittered, "Now, Draco, you knooow that you have no idea how real people live. Just listen to me, and I'll fix everything that way I want things."
"That's so unfair! You really don't know how real people live!" She turned to the counselor and said earnestly, "He thinks it's freakish to lift a finger and do anything for yourself."
"You insist on getting me out of bed at dawn so you can make the beds," he said evenly. "And you've driven the house elves to tears and talk of suicide by evicting them from the kitchen."
"He means servants," Ginny told the counselor hurriedly. "And there's too many of them."
Draco met her glare with an impassive expression. "They've served the family for hundreds of years, generations upon generations. I refuse to repay their service by kicking them out on the streets."
"The economy is very difficult right now," the counselor murmured. "If they're that old-fashioned..."
"Old-fashioned? You should see his parents! They're practically fossilized!"
"Oh, like yours are a model to follow? They live in squalor," Draco said with a sneer. "And all your brothers are good-for-nothings."
Ginny gasped and took a deep breath, her face red with the growing fury about to burst forth. Before she could explode, the counselor shouted, "Enough!"
The couple turned to her expectantly, and the counselor toyed nervously with her pearls for a moment before she pulled herself together. "You've been here for several sessions now, and I'm afraid we haven't made any progress."
"What are you saying?" Ginny asked, frowning slightly.
"I'm saying that the main question isn't how to stay married, but why you got married in the first place." The counselor looked down at her clipboard and wrote something. "This is the number for an attorney--"
"WHAT?" Ginny was on her feet, the shock having finally worn off. "How dare you? You're a disgrace to your profession! I'll have your license!"
The counselor tried to stand, but fell back in the face of Ginny's evil glare. "You are blind. Blind and stupid, and I will destroy you."
She stormed out, the door slamming behind her, and Draco stood. "Thank you for letting her blow off steam," he said with a small bow.
"Is... Is she always like that?" asked the trembling counselor.
"Oh, yes," Draco said. "I love her passion - it's why I married her. And now, if you'll excuse me..."
The counselor nodded, but as he reached the door she called out, "Wait! About her threats... She didn't mean... She couldn't..."
"I'm terribly sorry," said Draco. "She really will destroy you, and we have so much money she could spend millions doing it and we wouldn't miss it. Still, I'll make sure you end up in a nice sanitarium, and have a small nest egg to help you when you're ready to try picking up the pieces of your broken life."
He left, and found his wife still outside, pacing and seething. "If I ever listen to Hermione again, hit me."
"You'd break my fingers." He smiled and gathered her close, giving her a small kiss on the cheek. "If I promise to go to Sunday dinners at your parents' house, will you let the house elves do their jobs and let me sleep until a decent hour?"
She looked up at him with a raised brow. "And you won't complain about the poor surroundings or taunt my brothers?"
"And you won't make the beds or kick the elves out of the kitchen?" he returned, hiding his amused smile against the smooth skin of her neck.
"Well," she said. "Maybe an occasional taunt."
"I suppose I would miss your meatloaf," he replied.
Smiling at last, she said, "I really do love you, you know."
"I love you, too," he said, "and I'd marry you all over again."
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