Pardon My French

By Violet Beck

Arc I :: Quelle Chance!

Chapter Four :: Fun with Sharp Objects

Mary-Sue screamed as a hissing animal flew off of my head and under one of the hotel chairs, where he proceeded to hiss and growl. I turned slowly to find the source of the disturbance.

"Draco," my father said, his gaze freezing me through. "Our quarters are ready. Are you and that...beast ready to come along, or would you rather loiter about and fraternize with the plebeians a bit longer?"

"Thanks, I'm ready," I said rather nastily. Mary-Sue had leaned down and was now making a curious 'here kitty, kitty' sound at my cat, as though that would somehow extricate him from his safe house. My father was one of those who had taken a deep dislike to the sweet little demon, and the feeling had been fast to grow into a state of mutual terror. The cat wasn't going anywhere.

"Aw, what's her name?" the Muggle crooned, staring my cat down with her sickeningly little Mud baby-blues.

"His name is Asmodeus," I snapped.

"Oooh! A demon name! That is so cool!"

Ignoring her, I clapped my hands to catch the cat's attention. Grudgingly, Asmodeus wound around Mary-Sue's kneeling form, and leapt up into my arms.

"Uh, see you around," I said to the blond wickan, hoping the distaste wasn't overly evident in my voice.

"Okay!"

Oh, how the perkiness seared my soul.

Semi-appeased, my father turned and strode off around the corner. I was close behind, glad to escape from what had quickly transformed from a prospect of harmless sex into a Pureblood's nightmare.

"The company you keep, Draco," he hissed when we were far enough away. I could feel the contempt.

I kept silent. I would not rise to the bait.

"It's rather revolting, how you lower yourself," Lucius continued. We passed through the main lobby--now empty--and boarded a lift. A squat elf noted the amount of fingers my father held up, and punched the "3" button for us.

"I'm sorry to disappoint you, Father," I said through clenched teeth, trying not to sound like I had lockjaw.

He sneered at me. "No you aren't, you little shit," he snarled, still retaining his usual we're-in-public-so-I'll-kill-you-later calm.

The elf pretended not to notice, though I thought I saw a commiserating flick of eyes come in my direction.

We disembarked, and my father dropped an old key into my hand. "Your room number is three twenty nine," he said sharply. And then, affixing me with his gaze: "And you will be attending every ceremony, meeting and meal I ask you to, or the consequences will be dire."

"Oh, I'm terrified," I drawled, and turned to stomp away.

His flat hand hit me in the back of the head, and I stumbled forward, all but losing my balance.

He'd hit me before, of course, but every time it happened, it came as a shock. I tended to forget that, however gentlemanly my father might be to me in public, he became a lit Filibuster in private.

By the time I'd regained myself, he had me by the collar.

"What's that?" he whispered, his face mere inches from my own. "Are you mouthing off again, Draco? One of these days I'm going to have to do something about your insolence, you know that?"

My face was set like stone, but like a pack of wild dogs on Hype, Lucius Malfoy can smell fear. Asmodeus burrowed inside my robes, shivering against me.

He let the feeling stew as I held my breath, trying to guess his retaliation. Would he hit me again? Transfigure me? Roar at me until dawn broke?

No, actually, he was going to let go.

"Get to your room," he snapped, and stomped back towards the lift. "I'll expect you to be at dinner at six. Until then, you're free to do as you please."

"Yes, Father," I said, perplexed that I didn't have horns, a tail, or flippers to show for the altercation.

He strode towards the lift, and sent me a last venomous look before he boarded the lift. "I'll be watching you," he said, and was gone.

Mother of God, I hated this vacation with all my black little soul already.

I glanced at the key. Three twenty-nine. I'd just go get freshened up, and then maybe I could find some complimentary coffee and breakfast pastries lurking somewhere. Or...at least some after-dinner mints. I had the nasty feeling that m'Lord didn't appreciate jet lag, and had therefore slated us in as becoming a nocturnal organization for the rest of our stay on the island.

Yippee.

I headed down the hall, watching the numbers on the doors rise as I passed. Twenty-five, twenty-seven, twenty-nine. I slipped the key on the lock, and stepped inside.

The lights were already on in the room, and I could hear the shower running. I supposed I had a roommate, then. My eyes locked onto a dormant coffee machine on the kitchenette counter, and I fairly trotted over to inspect it. There was a little bag of Sebring's Vanilla Roast propped against the machine's side, and I had the sudden compulsion to write love sonnets to our hotel's Housekeeping staff. I filled the little pot with water, dumped the coffee grounds through the hole on the top, and tapped the machine twice with my wand.

It whirred to life, and I grinned. Ah, I could feel the caffeine in my veins already.

Passing the time I had to wait, I glanced about the room. There were two neatly-made up beds, a bowl of mints on the dresser, and long navy curtains covering the sliding glass doors. An unobtrusive picture of some palm trees hung on the wall. I walked over and peered through the curtains to find a view of dark jungle, and the glint of ocean not so far beyond.

The shower turned off.

A sudden, muffled voice called my name.

"Draco?" came Pansy's urgent tone, "are you out there? Lucius said he'd fetch you...and I, uh, need some help."

Ah, damn.

This is why my father hadn't beaten the crap out of me. He'd chosen to impose Pansy upon me instead.

"I'm here," I said, and it was physically painful to do so.

"Uh, come in here, then," she said.

"In there?"

"Yes, Draco. Into the bathroom. Yes, I am naked. You have seen me naked, and this has not aroused you in the past. Please come in NOW."

"Now?" I threw a mournful glance in the direction of the coffee pot.

"Yes, right bloody now, you dickless ponce!"

Oh, gods. I stomped over and threw open the door. I then proceeded to almost die laughing.

She was, indeed, naked, and she was also covered from head to toe in shaving cream. I burst into gales of mirth, and fell to my knees, my whole body shaking from the hilarity.

"Stop it!" she groaned, and kicked me lightly. "Oh, god, I knew you'd laugh. You always laugh at me."

A witty retort was in order, but I was having trouble breathing. "Oh Christ," I sobbed, "oh Zeus." My face was streaming with gleeful tears. I collapsed onto my side.

She rained shaving cream down upon me as she veritably danced around in anger, and this only exacerbated my condition. "I should just kill you!" she ranted, and kicked me again. This had no effect. I was far, far gone.

Five minutes later, I'd stopped laughing, but I was pretty damn sure I was bleeding internally. My sides ached.

"Are you done yet?" Pansy said waspishly from where she sat on the toilet seat.

"Maybe," I gasped.

With a plink, she'd dropped something plastic on the tile next to my face. I reached out and picked it up. It was a cheap razor.

"What's with this?"

Pansy groaned. "I forgot my hair removal potion...so I needed shave my legs. I used the complimentary stuff they put in here, but the directions are just so...wrong!"

Dragging myself into a sitting position, I snatched the can of shaving cream she was waving at me, and inspected the label.

"You do know this is in Spanish, right!"

"...Maybe. Well, not all of it is! There're a few sentences in English!"

"Have you ever even seen someone shave their legs before, Pansy?"

"Uh...no. Have you?"

"No, but unlike you, I'm aware that it doesn't require smearing my face with pineapple-scented shaving cream."

"Fuck you. That was an accident."

"Sure." I got to my feet, and looked her up and down. "So what exactly do you want me to do?"

"Uh...help?"

I glowered at her. "As in shave your legs for you?"

"...Maybe."

"You mind if I use this razor to gash my wrists wide open?"

She threw me a pleading look. "Draco, please! I look like a bear!"

I gingerly reached down and gave her leg an appraising rub. "You've got a point there."

She caught my gaze, and did the Puppy Pout.

"Oh, fuck," I said, trying to shut my eyes and turn around, but it was too late. She'd already captured me with her nefarious trembling lower lip. Grumbling something awful, I spitefully grabbed one of her ankles and tilted her backwards on the toilet seat. "Just...hold still, okay? Holy mother of god, this is only because I owe you."

Pansy laughed nervously. "Uh...okay. Thanks, baby."

"Call me that again and you're going to lose a lot of blood."

I bent over her leg, and dragged the razor gently down it. Okay, that looked like it worked.

"Why do I have to do this, again?" I asked as I carefully took another stroke.

"Because I can't have hairy legs in Hawaii! What if we go to the beach!?"

I looked incredulously up at her. "It's the bloody middle of the night. No one is going to the beach."

"Draco, we're vacationing with the Dark Lord. I would not be surprised if all the house elves sprouted froofy blonde hair and went on a crusade, let alone if we were dragged to the beach in the middle of the night."

"Fair enough," I said, and continued with my work. "You'd better tip me for this, Miss Parkinson...."

She started to snicker, and then instead decided to shriek in agony.

I looked at her leg. Oops. Blood.

Note to self: pay extra attention to tasks that require the use of sharp instruments around bitchy Slytherin girls.

<<<>>>

Five minutes later, I was applying ice to my black eye out on the balcony, and sipping a cup of coffee in relative peace.

This was going to be a long, long day. Night. I meant night. Dammit!

Chapter Three | Chapter Five


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