Draco sat facing the window, the lights switched off so the sunlight shone bright in his dark room. He was thinking, wringing the piece of parchment in his hands rather nervously.
This is just a letter to inform you that Teddy would like to meet his cousin. He’s been asking for you since Andromeda said he had a cousin.
You can decide whether or not you would like to meet him. Just owl me back with the date if you do.
He sat in his room, his back resting on the side of his glamorous poster bed, his buttocks stuck to the floor, and thought. He never had the chance to get to know his first cousin Nymphadora, and all because Andromeda married a muggle.
Things had changed after the War. Terms like “blood traitor” were outlawed and old wounds were trying to heal. After much convincing to herself, Narcissa had reached out to her estranged sister, wanting to catch up. Draco thought it great for his mum that she had another sister to lean on, especially with what they lost in the War.
But after Draco had walked away from Hogwarts, walked away from an entire student body that stood and watched him betray them, he felt a humility like never before. Crabbe and Boyle even stopped talking to him for a while after that.
So imagine his surprise when Harry Potter, the boy he bullied all those years, wrote to him.
Draco stared out the window and watched two magpie’s fly about a tree branch, still twisting the parchment around in his hands.
Yes or no?
Yes or no?
He picked up and quill and wrote back.
He was frozen on the spot. There was no way he could move now, not with this small child hugging his legs. His grey eyes widening in fear, Draco looked to his mother, pleading for help.
“Dwaco” Teddy gurgled, his grin almost too wide for such a small face.
Draco stared down at his cousin’s adorably small face and felt something stir in his stomach. A lump rose up his throat, and Draco fought back the urge to cry.
Your parents are dead because of me and my family.
Tears moistened his eyes, and he had to look up so they wouldn’t accidentally fall on the young boy’s face. Teddy buried his face onto Draco’s thighs, squeezing his arms around Draco’s legs.
“Dwaco, do you want to play?” Teddy asked, looking up at Draco with large, multicoloured eyes. At the slight nod of the older boy’s head, Teddy dragged his cousin to his room.
It was a beautiful bright room with childish drawings plastered everywhere on the walls. On top of a cupboard was a photo frame; Tonks and Remus were laughing and smiling at each other, their eyes so in love and so happy.
“Come here.” Teddy beckoned, patting on the spot beside him. Draco sat down, folding his legs, and forced a taut smile onto his face. Teddy picked up a toy and passed it to Draco idly.
Teddy was humming, off-key, Draco would add, but it was a merry tune. Draco watched as Teddy’s light blonde hair slowly morphed into a scruffy brown, his multicoloured eyes changing into a greenish shade. His breath hitching, Draco had to remind himself that this was not Professor Lupin, that this was not Professor Lupin.
“What’s your favwoute colour?” Teddy asked, his bright eyes focused on his cousin.
Pausing, Draco was surprised at the innocence of the question. He supposed that he never really had a favourite colour; he never thought about it. “Green,” he answered meekly, turning away to twiddle the toy in his hands. “What about you?”
Teddy giggled and his hair began to turn a light blue at the roots. Draco gasped. Teddy’s entire head became one giant light blue fluff, and he was grinning so wide Draco knew it should hurt.
“Blue!!!” Teddy shrieked, jumping up and crawling on his bed. He jumped around.
Glancing at the door, Draco cursed as to why his mother didn’t come rushing in at the sound. Teddy stopped and leaned close, like this was a big conspiracy nobody should know.
“Do you know why?”
Draco hesitated for a moment, wondering how far he was willing to go to show his interest in his cousin. But after seeing how enthusiastic this conspiracy was, it took everything for him to not roll his eyes.
Teddy withheld a laugh and checked that the door was definitely closed. He leaned close to Draco’s ear, and whispered, “They’re the same colour as Vicky’s eyes!” He broke into hushed giggles, like it was the funniest joke ever.
Of course Teddy was friends with Victoire Weasley, Draco thought, inhaling sharply.
“And you’re friends with . . . Vicky, aren’t you?” Draco asked, inspecting the toy Teddy gave him.
Teddy nodded his head so vigorously Draco thought it would fall off.
“I loooooooooove Vicky! I’m going to marry her when I’m older!” Teddy squealed, his hair transforming into a blushing pink, matching his reddening cheeks.
“Good luck with that,” Draco scoffed. He turned to Teddy and softened, stuttering, “n-no, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean it like that.” Draco sighed and dropped his hands onto his lap.
Teddy crawled into the space between his cousin’s legs and pressed his hand against Draco’s. He grinned as he turned his eyes grey, like Draco’s, slowly morphing his face so he looked like a young Draco Malfoy. Watching mesmerized, Draco’s throat closed up at the sight of a young version of himself.
“I want you to be at the wedding! Here, I’ll make an invitation for you!” Teddy declared, grabbing a piece of blank paper, using a dark blue marker pen to draw out the invite.
Draco marveled at how hyperactive children really where. The attention span this young boy had was all over the place, as if, like his body, his mind couldn’t stand still.
He found himself smiling and lay on his stomach. Teddy was pure joy, and Draco felt like he needed someone like him in his life.
“I would love to go to your wedding, but only if you come to mine!” Draco joked.
Teddy’s head snapped up. “Do you have a Vicky of your own?”
Suddenly Draco felt very hot. It wasn’t so serious, his relationship with Astoria, but damn. Teddy grinned at Draco’s silence and crawled over to his cousin, handing him a dark green crayon and paper.
“I hope you marry her like I’m gonna marry Vicky!”
“Me too,” Draco whispered. He ruffled Teddy’s hair and smiled softly. “Me too.”
Both began drawing the wedding invitation for the other in the bright bedroom. Draco was glad he finally had more family, to be able to support this small bundle of hyperactivity and guide him away from the same mistakes he did.
He didn’t even realise when his mother began watching them, but he met her eyes. They smiled at each other and exchanged silent words.
Thank you, Mother.