In the summer, Malfoy Manor was a rather pleasant place. The lingering greyness of winter, fall, and spring disappeared for a precious few months, replaced by crisp lines of light and warm breezes. The entire Manor, Lucius thought, seemed to pull itself out of a perpetual state of depression in order to stop to smell the flowers.
Were there any actual flowers on the grounds, that is. At least, of none poisonous kind.
Still, the paintings did not so much sneer as sternly frown in the warm season. The Hell Beasts did not attack each other but played with intense vigor. Even the House Elves tended to have an extra bounce in their step and a bit more life to them in general, though that might have had more to do with his son's attempts at more advanced curses on any creature that wandered by.
He was a such a darling boy, really. So motivated, so eager to study during his break. Especially when he was given access to Lucius's many books. Yes, Draco was always thrilled when he was allowed to use his father's study.
Come to think of it, the boy spent hours upon hours in that room when he could.
Looking thoughtful, Lucius switched directions and headed towards said room, polished shoes sending echoes through the long halls of the Manor.
Ten minutes later, he stood before a set of mahogany doors. Snakes were carved into the wood, curling and bearing fangs. The doorknobs were also shaped like snakes, on this as well as every other door in his home. Admittingly, not all were as fierce as these ones but Narcissa had insisted that Draco's have top hats on their little heads and there was no denying the woman anything.
The things he put up with. Honestly.
Shaking his head, the blonde man listened closely for any hint of what his son was doing. But there was no crackle of power or turning of yellowed pages. Not even the sound of a House Elf being tor-...err.../helping/ Draco with his studies.
Pushing the door open slightly, he peered into the sunlit room.
Something sighed. Softly.
Not in pain.
Silvery white eyebrows furrowed in confusion, eyes finally spotting Draco. The young heir was sitting on a leather chair, legs pulled up to his chest and cradling something in his arms with a content look on his sharp features.
The soft sigh came again.
"Oh, Snakey," Draco crooned lovingly, "I do love you so."
Stepping quietly into the room, Lucius tried to see what on earth his son was talking about-
"Sigh....Snakey," Draco cooed like a dove.
- and froze.
His ornate, custom-made cane.
It lay in his son's hand, dark and slender save for the silver snakehead at its top.
Draco stared at it with complete adoration.
"SHINE," went the cane.
The blonde boy sighed again.
"PA-SHING," it sang, as the sun hit it.
Draco looked as though he would faint.
Lucius, at last overcoming his morbid fascination, had had enough. "Get away from that, boy!" he bellowed and stormed up to a surprised Draco, hastily snatching back his cane. "Go torture an Elf or steal candy or something. And don't touch my cane..wand...it again."
"Yes, father," Draco said quickly and dashed out of the room, only glancing back once.
Huffing, the Lord of Malfoy Manor sat back on the now unoccupied chair. "I blame his mother's side," Lucius said aloud. "Bunch of nutters, I always said. Isn't that right, Snakey?"
Snakey shined brightly in response.
Lucius smiled and gave it a quick hug.
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