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Gossamer Armour

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Astoria seemed nervous all throughout dinner.

It wasn't so pronounced as to make Draco properly apprehensive, but it was enough to make him curious. They were only three days into a two-week holiday along the French Riviera, celebrating their second wedding anniversary. It had been blissfully perfect so far, which made the sudden appearance of Astoria's nerves at dinner all the more disconcerting. Astoria was hardly ever anxious, and seeing as they'd been together nearly every moment of the day, he couldn't think of a single thing that might have unsettled her. Still, he trusted his wife to tell him what was on her mind when she was ready, and nothing in her interactions with him implied he was at fault. So he did his best to put it aside and let himself enjoy their expensive and luxurious meal overlooking the Mediterranean.

He managed to mostly forget about it over dessert as he and Astoria split a truly decadent crème brûlée and another bottle of red. At some point during the meal Astoria had slipped off her heels and was now sliding a stockinged foot up beneath Draco's trousers. He shuddered at the distinct and unforgettable feeling of nylon rubbing against his calf. Draco might not personally allow himself to frequently indulge in his deepest desire, but admiring Astoria all dressed up in her finest lingerie was the next best thing. Astoria's foot travelled higher, dangerously close to his half-hard cock, and Draco coughed and signalled for the bill as he gave Astoria a heated stare; it was time to head back to the hotel before they got arrested for public indecency.

They walked back to the hotel, arms wrapped around one another, giggling when they stumbled over the uneven cobblestones. They'd been together now for just shy of four years, counting the nearly two years they'd been together before they got married, and it still never failed to amaze Draco, what Astoria brought out in him. He'd never known he was capable of feeling so carefree and happy, like he was worthy of the love and light she bestowed upon him despite the Mark forever burned on his arm, and a list of misdeeds far too long and great to ever entirely atone for. But Astoria saw something good in him when nobody else—not even Draco—had, and she'd stood by him, lending her fearlessness and courage. Not that she idolised him or let Draco get away with shit—she was a good person, almost idealistic, and she had high expectations of Draco, ones she truly believed he could meet. Together, they'd forged a path together, a new kind of life, different from the one Draco's parents had expected him to lead, the one he'd coveted as a small and selfish child. His parents were still bitter about his change of heart, unhappy with Draco's choice of a "Muggle-loving" wife, even if her family was one of the Sacred Twenty-Eight. But his parents no longer got a say in how Draco lived his life; they'd forfeited that right when they made all the wrong choices and, unlike Draco, refused to even attempt to learn from them.

The moment the two of them walked into their hotel room Draco turned and pressed Astoria up against the door, kissing her deeply, relishing the way she moaned and kissed back just as fiercely. But it was only a moment before her hands were gently pressing against his chest, easing him back, the nerves from earlier flickering over her face.

"Astoria?" Draco said, unease creeping up his spine.

She bit her lip, looking momentarily indecisive before her customary resolve stole over her expression. She met his gaze head-on, fearless as a Gryffindor. "You know how much I love you, don't you?"

Draco's brow furrowed, but he nodded. Once, he'd doubted her love, unbelieving that somebody so pure could truly care for somebody like him, but she'd proven time and again that it was no act.

"Yes," he replied. "And I love you."

"I know." She smiled and brushed a kiss against his lips. "I've left something for you, in the bedroom. I'd like—" She broke off and took a deep breath. "I'd like to share it with you, but it's your decision. I understand if you'd rather not."

Draco blinked, entirely confused, and Astoria laughed. "It'll make sense in a moment. Go to the bedroom, make your decision. Either choice is fine with me. Come find me here when you're ready." She nodded towards the bottle of champagne in the corner. "I'll pour us each a glass."

"All right," Draco said, still puzzled but willing to go along with whatever his wife had planned. He brushed another kiss against her lips before making his way to the bedroom, trying to imagine what he'd find there.

He didn't even come close to guessing correctly.

His heart jumped into his throat as he slowly approached the bed, taking in the black silk knickers and lace-trimmed stockings lying not-so-innocently on the bed. He recognised them, of course he did—they were his. They were normally stored with several other sets of knickers, garters, and stockings in a secret drawer in his wardrobe, one that Astoria must have somehow stumbled upon. She wasn't the type to snoop, so Draco trusted it truly was an accident, though it didn't stop the hot flush of humiliation from momentarily transmuting into anger. Those were… those were private. They were his shame, his secret, one he'd never shared with another soul. Because men weren't supposed to like the feeling of satin knickers encasing their cock and balls, weren't supposed to love the glide of nylon over their own bare legs. He'd learned that lesson early, the first time his horrified mother had caught him playing dress-up in her garments when he was eleven years old.

Despite his constant threats to go tattling to his father whenever things didn't go his way as a child, Draco had always been a mummy's boy. Oh, he tried his best to be the kind of heir his father wanted—following him to his various appointments at the Ministry, throwing himself into Quidditch, and regurgitating the rhetoric his father instilled in him—but ever since he was a boy, more often than not, he'd find his way back to his mother's side. He was dazzled by her unquestionable beauty and captivated by all the moving parts that went into maintaining it: the potions and lotions she'd smooth over every inch of her skin, the subtle yet perfectly applied makeup to enhance her features, and, of course, the various silks and laces and velvets she draped herself in.

Witches weren't the only ones who got to have fun with colour and texture—wizard's robes were often just as bright and intricate, especially for those with the Galleons to pay for it—but Draco's real fascination had always been for a witch's underthings. A wizard might get to wear a pair of boring-old pants beneath his robes—and traditional wizards wore nothing at all—but his mother's wardrobe held a veritable treasure trove of delicate undergarments. Lacy bras and silk knickers with tasteful bows and, Draco's favourite, stockings. There was something so hypnotising about watching his mother place a dainty foot inside the sheer scrap of fabric, slowly rolling the material up and over her legs until the lacy band sat snug around a milky thigh. It transformed a perfectly normal leg into something Draco couldn't drag his eyes from, and he didn't miss the way his mother seemed to grow more solid and sure as she slipped on her gossamer armour.

He'd wanted that for himself, but the moment his mother had caught him playing dress-up—a month before his first year at Hogwarts—he'd known there was something wrong in that desire. She'd not raised her voice—she never did—but she'd made it perfectly clear that Draco was far too old to be playing with his mother's things. Draco was a man, the Malfoy heir, and he had his duties and responsibilities, even if he was only eleven. One day he'd be expected to marry—a woman his mother had emphasised with a rather severe look—and no witch wanted a husband who was more interested in wearing his own knickers than getting into hers, not that Draco had any idea what she'd meant by that at the time. All he knew was that she was using her disappointed tone that always made him feel small, and there was something new in the way she looked at him that inexplicably made him want to cry as she took back her heels and had a house-elf escort him outside to play.

The mornings spent at his mother's side, watching her get ready for the day, stopped after that, and the next time he'd attempted to sneak into her room on his own he found the door sealed tight with a new Locking Spell. Draco had always been a quick study, and it didn't take a genius to figure out that his preoccupation with pretty stockings and garters was something sordid and shameful, something to be buried deep and denied, or, if that wasn't possible, at least kept secret. He'd done his best to forget about it, and for a time that was possible; war and the Dark Lord took precedence over desire. But once the dust had settled, Draco realised those wants hadn't gone anywhere, and he'd spent far too long being miserable to deny himself this one scrap of delight. So he'd made some discreet purchases and secreted them away in his rooms, pulling them out as infrequently as he could bear, relishing the rush of comfort and power he felt when he slid on his favourite fishnet stockings in the privacy of his bedroom. Draco knew he couldn't ever tell a soul, but that wasn't so bad; what he had was enough.

Astoria had been different from the start, nothing at all like the kind of pure-blood witches he'd grown up with, the ones like miniature versions of his mother, prim and aristocratic and cold as ice. He should have known how far deep that open mind and willing curiosity went, but he was still a mummy's boy at heart, and Narcissa's barbed insinuations were hooked too far beneath his skin to be easily extracted. He loved Astoria more deeply than he'd thought he was capable of, and he trusted her implicitly, but this secret was his alone to bear. So he continued to breathe life into it in the shadows, hiding away his pretty knickers and stockings and only pulling them out when he could be absolutely assured of privacy. Despite the shame that had grown on this want of his like mould, every time he slid a pair of sheer, patterned stockings over his legs he still felt a flash of power and invincibility.

Draco tried to reach for that same sense of fearlessness as he reached for the stockings on the bed with shaking hands, sliding the flimsy length of them through his fingers. Astoria had discovered his secret, had waited to confront him with it until they were away from the Manor and all the associations it held, and had made it clear that the next move was his. She'd been nervous tonight, yes, but not because she was horrified or disgusted by what she'd found, but because she was worried about how he'd react to her discovery. Draco knew Astoria well enough by now to know when she wasn't being truthful, and there'd been no lie in her eyes when she said this was something she'd like to share with him. But was she really ready for the reality?

It was one thing to think you were okay with seeing your husband in a pair of knickers and stockings, but it was another thing to actually see it. Draco's heart gave a painful little spasm as he remembered the way his mother had never quite looked at him the same way again after she'd caught him playing dress-up. The thought of the same thing happening with Astoria was unbearable.

But Astoria had already proved she was different from his mother, time and time again. If she said that she could handle this, that she wanted to, then Draco had to trust her to know her own mind. She was offering them something here, a chance for Draco to share a part of himself he'd thought he'd always have to keep hidden. As terrifying as it was to be so vulnerable, Draco thought the reward would be worth it.

He set the stockings back down and quickly stripped out of his clothes, sending them towards the wardrobe in the corner with a flick of his wand. The knickers were soft and cool as he slid them on, adjusting himself into the conveniently enlarged pouch. He'd long ago decided that if he were to give in at all, it would be with exquisitely made garments that fit like a glove, none of those cheap scraps of fabric that didn't have a ghost's chance of covering his bollocks. Once the knickers were on, the lines falling exactly where they were supposed to, Draco sat on the edge of the bed and picked up the stockings. This was always his favourite part of the routine, stepping into the narrow tube and slowly rolling the fabric up his leg until the band sat snug around his thigh. There was something undeniably sexy about a leg encased in sheer nylon, and he stepped in front of the mirror, allowing himself a moment to admire the picture he made. It would be better with a pair of heels, but Draco kept those in a different drawer altogether, and Astoria likely hadn't realised his predilection included footwear. Well, one thing at a time. He could save that revelation for another night.

Taking a deep breath, Draco squared his shoulders and stepped out of the bedroom, making his way through the dimly lit suite. The doors to the balcony were thrown open, letting in the warm summer air and the faint sounds of waves crashing on the shore below. A glass of champagne dangled from one hand as Astoria leaned out over the railing and looked out into the night, her weight shifting from foot to foot the way it always did when she was nervous. Draco felt a rush of tenderness sweep through him at the subtle tell; he wasn't the only one feeling unsure.

There was another flute of champagne next to the bottle on the table, the glass still icy from Astoria's Cooling Charm. Draco reached out and downed it in several quick gulps, took a moment to casually arrange himself just so in the circle of light spilling from the lit sconce on the wall, and then called out, softly, "Astoria."

Her shoulders momentarily tensed before immediately relaxing as she took a deep breath and slowly pivoted, her gaze unerringly finding his. Draco quirked a small smile and raised a brow, which she seemed to take as the permission it was to look her fill. She walked towards him, her pretty eyes wide and dark as she drank him in, her slow perusal of Draco's body making his cock harden.

"What do you think?" he asked, his voice low and vibrating with the faintest tremor he didn't bother to hide, not from Astoria.

She reached out and trailed soft fingertips down his chest, gliding over the faint scars there until she reached the silk hem of his knickers. She fingered them softly, reverently, and Draco didn't miss the way her breathing sped up, the rapid rise and fall of her chest as his cock twitched beneath the feather-light touch of her hand.

"Salazar," she breathed. "You look… incredible. I knew you would." She looked up at him, her face glowing with fierce desire. "The moment I stumbled upon your secret drawer, all I could think about was seeing you all dressed up for me."

Draco flushed, on display but not entirely hating it. He'd never shared this with somebody before and the honest appreciation in Astoria's eyes made him feel invincible. That feeling grew even stronger as Astoria slowly sank to her knees, her hands trailing reverently down his sides, sliding over his knickers before skimming down his stockings. She ran her fingers up and down his slick, nylon-covered calves, the way Draco had done to her so many times before. It was a rush, being on the other end of things, and it was clear Astoria was in agreement.

She looked at him as she nuzzled against his groin, her cheek warm through the silk. Draco shuddered, so turned on he could barely stand it. Astoria had barely touched him and already he felt close to going off like a bloody fifth-year getting his dick wet for the first time. She breathed against him in hot, damp puffs, moaning when Draco's cock gave an appreciative twitch.

"I want to suck you," she said, looking beautiful and debauched as she gazed up at him through her thick lashes.

"I certainly won't say no to that." Astoria enjoyed giving head well enough, but Draco hadn't ever seen her so eager for it, like there was nothing she wanted more in that moment than to get her mouth on Draco's cock. She grinned up at him and hooked her fingers in the waistband of his knickers, tugging them down just enough for his dick to swing free before settling them behind his bollocks. It wasn't the most comfortable to have the elastic digging against his perineum, but with Astoria swallowing him down, he had more pleasurable things to focus on.

Like the way her tongue rubbed along the underside of his dick, and the hungry little moans she let out with each bob of her head. Draco slid his hands through her long hair, not to pull or guide her, but to anchor himself as pleasure washed over him. Astoria's hands kept sweeping up and down his legs as she sucked, like she couldn't get enough of the feeling of Draco's stockings beneath her palms. Draco couldn't get enough either, and he could quickly become addicted to the way her touch felt through the sheer fabric.

Draco's thighs began to tremble as pleasure swirled through him, his orgasm drawing closer as Astoria sucked and petted him. It wouldn't take much to push him right over the edge, and when Astoria looked up at Draco with her big, watery eyes, her mouth full of Draco's cock as she moaned around him, well, that did it. Draco gasped and came, filling Astoria's mouth as he slumped against the wall. Astoria licked him clean afterwards before tucking him back into his knickers and placing a kiss against the silken pouch. Draco let out another shiver and reached down to pull Astoria to her feet and give her a proper kiss, tasting himself on her tongue.

"You like them then?" Draco breathed into her mouth.

"Fuck yes," Astoria said emphatically. "Though I'm a little jealous of how amazing your calves look in those stockings."

Draco smirked at her. He did have amazing calves.

"I can't wait to see you in the rest of your collection," Astoria continued. She paused and gave him a tentative smile. "And maybe… maybe we could get some that match? We can wear them under our dress robes whenever your parents make us sit through one of their boring dinner parties."

A shudder went through Draco as he imagined it, sitting at his parents' table, the perfect pure-blood heir with the requisite pure-blood wife, all while wearing matching lingerie beneath their conservative robes. Their little secret. He grinned.

"I've always loved the way you think. Although, in the meantime"—he reached down and slid a hand up her dress robes, cupping her damp knickers and pressing the fabric against her clit—"what I'd really like is to get you out of these so I can return the favour."

Astoria moaned and wrapped her arms around Draco's neck as she ground down against his palm, and repeated his words from earlier.

"I certainly won't say no to that."