Walking and Talking
It was a slow night. Draco and Pevensie were patrolling the cemetery near Hogsmeade. So far they had not even come across anything. Not a peep tonight. She was doing better and seemed more like her old self again, but Draco was still a bit miffed about her not telling him certain things. He knew she would have her secrets, but some of it was a big deal. He should not have had to hear about her fight from Buffy.
She kept all their conversations strictly slay-related, and he was sick and tired of that. Every time he tried to steer it towards more personal matters, she steered it right back.
“How are things with the mutt?” Draco asked.
“I don’t want to talk about Rowan.”
“Okay, let’s talk about Chelle and Brittney and Lydia then.”
Pevensie stopped and glared at him. “It’s over. Done with. Why do we need to talk about it?”
“Why didn’t you tell me? Why won’t you speak to me about this?”
“It’s fine now. I’m past it, and...”
“Yes?” he prompted.
“I can’t talk to you about being weak.”
Draco grabbed her arm roughly and made her stop walking. “You can tell me anything. I don’t expect you to be the strongest person in the world. We all have weaknesses. I want you to come to me with these things.”
“You couldn’t have helped.”
“But I could have listened.” Draco sighed. “I thought we got past all of this after Willow went all crazy, that night, but you slipped right back into keeping me at a distance.”
“What if something happens to you like Bunting? Where does that leave me? You’re not just my watcher, Draco.”
“Then stop treating me as if I am,” he snapped. “If I die, just have sodding Nott bring me back to life.”
Pevensie had been about to cry until he said that. Then she giggled. She knew he didn’t mean it. Then again, it was Draco. Maybe he did.
“I know it hasn’t been easy for you, but I swear to you, Pevensie, even if something does happen to me, I will make sure you are taken care of. Your old life is over. It was over the moment you were called. It was sealed with a finality the second we met. You are never going to have to worry about being wanted ever again.”
She threw herself at him, hugging his middle. Pevensie had never had anyone care for her like this. Not ever. It was dangerous, and it scared her. She would do anything for Draco. He had power over her. He could be used against her. She had foolishly tried to distance herself from that, to make him less important in her heart, just like she had tried to do with Meredith and her friends, but it was too late. Draco was the parent, mentor and sibling she had always wanted.
“There now,” he said. “No need to get all touchy feely. There’s a vampire pulling itself out of the ground over there. Why don’t you go stake it. It might make you feel better.”
She smiled at him before practically skipping over. Draco shook his head. He knew what she had been trying to do because he used to do it all the time. When someone started to matter to him a little too much, he would pull away. It was a vulnerability to care for someone. He understood that a little too well. Caring left you open to all sorts of pain and emotional blackmail.
Or so he had thought.
Now Draco was beginning to discover that caring also created strength. He didn’t know how he had never seen that he survived his school years because of his friends, his godfather and his mother.
Pevensie walked back up to him, brushing dust from herself.
“Can we talk about what Willow did to you?”
Pevensie looked away. “Okay.”
“I know it scared you, but you have to know that Willow would never hurt you. That was not her saying those things; it was her dark.”
“I wouldn’t have let her kill you.”
Pevensie looked at him. “How were you going to stop her?”
“I don’t know, but no one takes my things from me.”
“Should I be offended you call me a thing?”
Draco rolled his eyes and pulled her to his side. “I love you as if you had been sorted into my house or we shared a bloodline, you brat. Like it or not, we’re family now. You’re well stuck with me, so I will always come for you, always try to save you or die trying. Always.”
Pevensie started crying.
“That was not meant to upset you,” Draco said, frowning.
“I just...” she didn’t know what words to say. “I love you too, you know. No one cares about me like you. Nobody. I mean, you came in and... I have things now. I have people now, someplace to go. I don’t know what to with it sometimes.”
“Bask,” he said, giving her a bit of a squeeze. “And always let my opinions be relevant to you.”
She laughed a little.
“I mean it, Pevensie. I will always be here. Always.”
She was thinking he couldn’t know that, but it was comforting anyway. She’d take it for now because it left her with a good feeling. She’d never had anyone or anything as a constant in her life. Having someone with a presence like Draco’s saying they would always be there for her was better than she ever thought she’d get. It would probably set her up for some serious heartbreak later for caring what he thought so much, but Pevensie didn’t care about that part. The good parts of this relationship made up for the bad parts.