Salazar Comes to Slytherin 10
Author: John Sexton
Genre: Harry Potter Slash
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Chapter Ten - Salazar's First Contact
Draco Malfoy hung back in the shadows of the darkened doorway, in which he had taken refuge from Professor Severus Snape and HIS SON, Salazar. He could barely believe what he had already learned from eavesdropping on the professor and his sexy son.
"So, Dad," Sals asked, "what are Draco's chances of success? You might not be able to tell me what he has been charged to do, by that foul creature, but at least you can tell me that," he pleaded.
"Draco is resourceful and intelligent," his father replied, "and yes, Sals, you were right, he's also head-strong... you're very much alike," he added with a grin.
Then a cloud descended on the Potions master's face.
"But his chance of success is low, Son, very low indeed."
The warm glow in Draco's heart, from being compared to Sals, died with his professor's final assessment.
"Well, then," Sals declared vehemently, "I'll just have to win him over to our side... won't I?"
The beautiful youth's firm resolve flushed through Draco like a refreshing elixir. He could barely believe his ears.
"Is this some elaborate prank?" Draco asked himself; but he soon dismissed that notion.
"Win him over to our side..." the words rang out in Draco's head... "to our side..." ... "OUR SIDE!"
"Getting a little ahead of yourself, aren't you, Son?" Sals's father chided him. "You seem pretty sure about Draco, considering he hasn't even met you yet... he might not even like you... have you considered that, Sals?"
The beautiful boy looked suddenly crestfallen, and Draco wanted to reach out and wrap his arms around him.
Then Sals looked very determined.
"I want to be his friend, Dad," said the boy, "if he'll let me. You know I want to help him. I decided that, as soon as I realised he was in serious trouble, and even more so today, now that I know that foul creature has threatened to kill him if he fails."
Draco sucked in a deep breath and held it, until he'd regained control of his breathing.
"How does he know about that? ... any of it?"
"On another fishing expedition... are we, Sals?" Professor Snape smirked.
"No, not really," the boy replied nonchalantly, "but I'm right, aren't I?" he added with an impish grin.
"Ever the Slytherin, ever the pessimist," his father returned the smile for a brief moment before he scowled, "but yes, Sals; in his oh-so-subtle way, Voldemort has threatened Draco."
"Then he has no choice, really," cried Sals triumphantly, "he'd be mad not to join our side."
"Yes, well..." Professor Snape smiled sadly at his son, "as noble as some of your intentions may be, Sals, you should consider that Draco might not want to join our side."
The man paused for a moment, seemingly deep in thought; then he smiled again.
"But," he sighed, as he cupped the nape of his son's neck, and shook Sals affectionately, "if anyone can help Draco, my dear boy, I've no doubt that it is you."
"So you won't be angry if I try and exert an influence on Draco, then, Dad?"
Sals's father gently cupped the boy's beautiful face in his hand.
"My love for you is not conditional; you do realise that, don't you, Sals?"
"Yeah, of course I do, Dad," Sals smiled and gripped his father's hand in camaraderie, "thanks." Then he grinned cheekily and quipped, "but you still haven't said if you'd be angry."
Draco was touched by their mutual affection, but also felt voyeuristic, and extremely jealous of the father-son relationship so long denied to him.
Snape senior merely broadened his smile and shook his head.
"No, Sals, I will not."
The professor smiled at his son, again, then seemed lost in thought for a brief moment. He finally shook his head, with an incredulous expression.
"I can't imagine what I could have said..." he paused and squinted at Sals, then he curled his lip and queried, "are you sure you didn't see something when we were practicing your-"
"Dad!" Sals laughed, "stop worrying: You didn't betray Draco or anyone else, I swear. It was nothing in any of your memories, just a few things you said in general, about Slytherin... and once about the Parkinson girl... and something else you said about Blaise Zabini... no!... it wasn't what you said, but the way you spoke about Blaise and Draco. It just made me interpret some of the memories in the Pensieve from a different perspective, I suppose."
Draco flushed bright red, and he worried about how much Professor Snape knew; then he panicked that his glowing face would weaken his charm, and they'd see him.
Sals smiled at his father, then he shrugged those broad shoulders, and Draco shivered, but not from the cold.
"Trust me, Dad," Sals wailed, "I know that you've known Draco since he was born, but I'm certain that he'll stand up to that bastard, I know it here."
Sals rapped his chest with his clenched fist. Then he produced a brave little smile.
"Besides," he chirped, "I just want to be his friend, Dad, if he'll let me; and I want to save him from that evil bastard!"
"I want to save him from that fate too, Sals," said his father, as he gripped the boy's shoulder, "but Draco has to want to save himself; you can only stand by and offer help when the time is right, lad. You can't make up his mind for him, you know that."
The beautiful boy held Draco transfixed, as he nodded to his father.
"And," the professor added sombrely, "do not assume that Draco will be prepared to reveal his stance publicly, Sals, even if he does elect to stand with us against that monster."
"Now who's getting ahead of themselves, Father?"
Sals laughed lightly, seemingly trying to ease the heavy tone of the conversation.
"Yes, Sals," said his father, maintaining his grim visage, "I may well be. But Draco will feel threatened by even a hint of betrayal of his secret, so, I repeat: tread carefully."
"Thanks, Dad," Sals smiled sadly, then he brightened for a brief moment, as he teased his father, "but I think you might be underestimating Draco, he is a Slytherin, after all."
Then, just as the beautiful dark-haired boy looked up, for a fraction of a second, Draco could have sworn that their eyes met.
Draco wanted to scream out... to say... ... ... he didn't really know what he wanted to say, actually. He felt confused; excited, incredulous and flushed, to be sure, but ultimately he was utterly confused.
"True, that he is, Sals... Slytherin to the core!" Professor Snape sighed. "Well, then," he added, a little more enthusiastically, though his voice was tinged with resignation, "if you're ready, Sals, let us greet our adoring public!" He grinned cynically.
"Don't worry, Dad," the boy chuckled, "they'll love you... once they discover that you're a doting parent."
Then the beautiful youth grinned mischievously, and Draco melted in the radiance of his smile.
"That," retorted Professor Snape with a laugh, "is precisely what worries me, Sals, and you know it!"
The boy smiled cheekily, while Draco simply shook his head in complete astonishment: Severus Snape had just laughed... in public; Draco could not believe it.
"Snape has a son! That unbelievably delicious wizard is Severus Snape's son? But..."
Draco broke out of his reverie to whisper "Finite Incantatum!" as the Snapes started walking towards the light.
Draco whipped around the corner and trailed them along Diagon Alley, his swift return to Malkin's abandoned; Mother would have to wait.
The cunning young Slytherin slowed a short distance from his quarry, as they stopped to look at another shop window. Then he froze, with the sudden, brutal realisation that he'd just been played... they'd both known exactly where he'd been hiding and what he had been doing!
Draco had never felt as utterly inept as he did just then, when the reality finally hit him. For those few brief moments, back in that darkened doorway, Draco's years of training as a Slytherin had amounted to naught!
Of course they'd known! Professor Snape was a Legilimens, for Merlin's sake, and a powerful wizard in his own right! Even in such poor light, at such close quarters, Snape would have found it almost impossible not to detect a disillusionment charm.
Then there was that moment when Draco had caught Sals's eye, he hadn't imagined that... the Snapes had both known, from the very start; it was all an act, their entire conversation had been a sham!... or had it?
Draco eyed the stunning youth from a distance. He was quite annoyed at having allowed his hormones to swamp his Slytherin logic and induce such a lapse in his defences.
Even more embarrassing was the realisation that he'd allowed himself to be taken in by their little performance.
But... was it a trap? A ruse of Vold-The Dark Lord's, to try to trip him up, or test his loyalty?
However, Draco immediately dismissed those cautionary notions with a quaint rationalisation.
"If they put on that little show just for me," he thought, "then the least I can do is oblige them and play along. They may even provide a real solution to my dilemma."
Draco pulled his hood back neatly, and wisped his platinum-blonde hair into place with a subtle wave of his wand.
He was still awash with so many wild emotions that he began to wonder if he should delay this encounter until he was in control. But the panicked voice, which warned, quite irrationally, that he might not see this boy again for some time, won over. He resolved to push ahead.
When Draco was close enough to be clearly heard, without attracting the attention of the occasional passer-by, he made himself known.
"Professor Snape," he chirped brightly, "good afternoon, Sir. I hope your summer hols have been pleasant."
Snape nodded but did not smile; however, despite projecting his standard Hogwarts mien, he did look... different.
"Yes, thank you, Draco," the head of Slytherin House finally responded, expressionless as ever.
"I trust that things have not been too difficult for you... and your mother. I know it could not have been easy. You are coping with... everything?"
Snape's last query felt genuinely sympathetic.
All Draco could do was flush, with the indignity of it all, and nod like a fool.
The young blond looked down at his right hand, and another glow of embarrassment tinged his pallid complexion. The fact that he was wearing the Malfoy signet, in his father's absence, was a gesture of defiant pride; but even more than that, it was a great burden.
Draco knew that he was no longer a child, even though he was ten months shy of adulthood. He also knew that he would have to face the humiliation of Father's incarceration in Azkaban, all over again, when school resumed at the end of the month.
Snape's comment had hurt more than Draco had anticipated, despite it having been a genuine expression of concern from someone who was a friend. Draco wondered how he would handle being teased about it by the Gryffindorks, this time round.
"Gryffindorks!" he snorted to himself; he hated the Muggle corruption of the name, but it sounded so appropriate that he'd finally taken to using it.
"Well, at least there will be no Potter gloating over me," Draco consoled himself.
But even that seemed a little hollow, almost a Pyrrhic victory, for it had only succeeded in depriving him of the satisfaction of bringing down "The Boy Who Lived" himself, at school, every chance he could get.
When Draco looked up at Snape's son, all thoughts of Potter evaporated.
Draco smiled briefly, then flicked his gaze back and forth, expectantly, between father and son, their mesmerising, obsidian-black eyes their most familial trait.
Snape seemed to catch on... eventually.
"Ah, Draco," he purred, "let me introduce you to Salazar Snape... my son. Sals," he directed his attention towards the fruit of his loins, "this is Draco Malfoy."
Draco feigned surprise, but with a suitably Slytherin air of restraint.
"I was not aware that you had any children, Professor," he lied with consummate ease.
Little charades, such as this, were typically Slytherin. But playing out this particular farce, with Severus Snape and his erstwhile secret son, was utterly surreal.
Draco rationalised, once again, that the Snapes had started this little travesty, so he would simply play along. It was a relatively safe way to sound each other out, without having to make any commitment nor acknowledge anything contentious.
"Well, given my past associations," the man replied grimly, "it was for Sals's own protection that his existence remain a secret. But we lost Sals's mother recently and, now that he is old enough to look after himself-"
"Yes, I can see that."
Draco grinned salaciously at Sals, and licked his lips, before reining in his posturing under the elder Snape's odd glare. Draco proffered his hand and looked appropriately sombre.
"I'm sorry about your mother, Sals," Draco cooed, then he smiled broadly and added, "but I am very pleased to meet you."
When their fingers touched for the first time, Draco barely managed to suppress the reflex to jerk his hand away. His entire arm tingled and he felt his pulse soar. But, by the time they had gripped each other's hands, Draco was intoxicated and suddenly reluctant to release Sals's fingers. He tried desperately to mask his body's reaction.
Draco eyed the ornament on Sal's upper arm more closely. The stunning reptile was coiled three times around the well-toned biceps; or had it coiled itself?
Draco still couldn't tell if it was real or ornamental and merely charmed. Its tail arched up around its skull, where the tapering appendage flicked, out from under the creature's lower jaw, like a third tongue.
But, for Draco, the most alluring feature of the snake's magic was that its silver scales almost blended into the boy's honey-tanned skin, rendering it nearly invisible; it now appeared more like glass than metal or reptilian flesh.
Draco wondered, momentarily, how he had espied it so easily, back in the relative darkness of Knockturn Alley.
Two small silver earrings dangled from Sal's right ear.
Draco scanned them with interest, and wondered about their significance. One was an ankh and the other a pentagram; they were joined by a pair of delicate silver chains that looped under the lobe.
Professor Snape sneered, then the Potions Master squinted at Draco, clearly incensed by his interjection.
But Draco was too distracted to care, as the professor concluded his explanation emphatically.
"Well... I have decided to bring Sals out of hiding. He needs to be with people his own age, and he has a lot to offer the school."
"You're going to Hogwarts!"
Draco beamed a suitably surprised smile, though he already knew as much, from their earlier encounter. Even so, he was happily unable to curb his naked enthusiasm.
"Yeah," Sals smiled. "I'm looking forward to it," he added quickly.
"So am I."
"To what, Draco?" Sals smiled salaciously, "going back to school?" His smile now oozed sexuality.
Draco felt suddenly cold and hot and...
"Yeah, that too," he quipped, then licked his lips again, as they curled into another salacious grin. "What year will you be in?" he added in near panic, which he hoped he masked effectively.
It was the first time he had given the issue any thought, and the possibility that they might not be in the same year was suddenly horrid.
"Same as you, Sixth Year," Sals answered.
The unexpected nature of the reply obliterated Draco's relief, leaving him a little stunned; he did not have to feign surprise, it was genuine.
He caught the sudden jerk of Professor Snape's head, in the corner of his eye. But, by the time Draco looked up at Sals's father, the Potions master had masked what Draco was certain had been a look of surprise.
"How do you know what year I'm in?" Draco asked suspiciously, as he continued to play the game.
Sals smiled at his father.
"Wasn't Draco the boy you said would have the same timetable as me, Dad?" He then added quickly, "if I'm sorted into Slytherin, that is."
Severus Snape made no attempt to hide either his astonishment or his smile.
"I think I may have made a passing reference to that fact."
He turned to Draco and adopted his trademark cautionary glare.
"Let that be a lesson to you, Draco," the Potions master grinned slightly, "watch what you say around Sals, he has an encyclopaedic memory. Your merest utterance may come back to haunt you."
Then he smiled, far more genuinely than Draco could ever remember.
Draco preferred this new version of his Potions teacher. He returned the smile and laughed lightly in reply.
"Yes, Professor," he quipped, "thank you, I will."
Draco looked over to Sals and shared his smile and the joke. He gestured towards the green and silver waistcoat and quirked an eye at Sals.
"Is there really any doubt you'll be in Slytherin?" he teased.
Sals shrugged, with surprising nonchalance, and returned Draco's smile. Then the beautiful youth quickly changed topic.
"We were just going to Flourish and Blotts... purchased your books yet, Draco?"
"No, er... NO!"
Draco tried to mask his panic. "Mother!" He had to get back to her before she started to cause alarm.
"Not yet," he added casually.
"Dad," Sals smiled, "why don't I go to the bookshop with Draco, and meet you at the apothecary's in an hour?" He turned to Draco. "If that's all right with you?"
Draco's eyes lit up.
"That would be wicked," he cried; but he tempered his enthusiasm with a squint of apprehension. "If you don't mind calling into Malkin's first? I have to let Mother know where I'll meet her."
What Draco really meant was that he had to explain to his mother where he'd been and where he was going. But he was hopeful that the shock of Sals's presence would assuage, or at least redirect, Mother's ire.
"Sure," Sals replied cheerfully, "I've got to go there anyway." He turned back to his father. "Dad, what if I meet you at Edburg's instead... say... at four?"
Severus Snape merely smiled again.
"I'm sure I can occupy myself, Sals," Snape senior replied cheerfully. "Go and enjoy yourself."
Professor Snape casually cupped his hand around the nape of his son's neck and shook him affectionately, just as he'd done back in Knockturn Alley.
"I'm sorry, Sir," Draco laughed, as he shook his own head incredulously, "but it's going to be very difficult to get used to seeing you like this."
Snape pinned Draco with his most ominous glare, betrayed only by the faintest flicker of a smirk.
"Don't become too overawed, Mr Malfoy," he grinned wickedly, "I can assure you that the transformation is far from complete. When you return to Hogwarts you will find me waiting to greet you with my usual persona."
"Oh, joy," Draco quipped.
Sals merely snorted his amusement.
"See, Dad," he laughed, "I told you they'd just love you."
"You!" Snape rounded on his son, "behave yourself," he warned him, but without any real malice, "and stay out of trouble," the Hogwarts master turned back to Draco, "both of you."
"Yes, sir!" the boys chorused, then laughed.
"Even if we encounter Gryffindorks?" Draco asked airily.
"Especially... if you are unfortunate enough to cross their paths," replied Professor Snape.
Draco missed the look that was exchanged between father and son, before the former sighed, "which I dare say is a certainty."
"Yes, Professor," replied Draco more soberly.
"Off you go then." Snape spun on his heel and headed back towards Knockturn Alley.
Draco turned and eyed Salazar Snape more closely, letting the boy know, in no uncertain terms, that he liked what he saw.
"Off we go then," Sals quipped.
The handsome youth smiled at Draco, who assured himself, despite his misgivings, that his feelings were reciprocated.
"Draco, where have you been?" wailed Narcissa Malfoy, "I've had Madam Malkin and her staff looking everywhere for you!"
"I'm sorry, Mother."
Draco smiled innocently. He raised his eyebrows playfully at the boy who trailed behind and to his side. Draco gestured from his mother to his latest acquaintance, with a suitable pregnant pause.
"Mother, I'd like to introduce you to a new friend of mine, Salazar Snape." He then turned to the boy, "Sals, I'd like you to meet my mother."
"Good afternoon, Mrs Malfoy," the tall, dark, handsome youth inclined his head politely, "I am very pleased to make your acquaintance."
Draco had been alternating between watching Mother and Sals, for their reactions, but most of his attention had been focussed on her attitude towards the lad.
Narcissa had been eyeing Sals with some disdain, well before Draco had introduced him. Draco knew exactly why: he would never be allowed to dress like Sals.
But the boy's name had changed Mother's attitude, from disdain to incredulity, then, in a flash, suspicion.
"A pleasure, I am sure, Master Snape."
Her tone was clipped and at odds with her salutation.
Draco held his breath; "Master" was a condescending epithet in Mother's vocabulary and not a good omen.
"You are not, per chance, related to Professor Severus Snape?" she enquired icily.
"I'm his son, Mrs Malfoy."
Draco's mother drew in her breath slowly, closed her eyes and pursed her lips, as she inclined her face to the floor.
"Young man," she raised her head imperiously and drilled Sals with a cold stare, "I have known Severus Snape most of his life; I would know if he'd had a son. What childish game do you think you are playing? You should be ashamed of yourself!"
"MOTHER!" Draco shrieked unapologetically, "I met Sals, with his father, only minutes ago. I can assure you that he is Professor Snape's son. I think you owe Sals an apology."
Narcissa Malfoy lifted her head high, despite the flush she could not hide. She sniffed haughtily before relaxing her stance slightly and swallowing her pride.
"If I offended you, young man-"
"That's okay, Mrs M," Sals interjected cheerfully.
Draco almost choked on his mother's tacit reaction to Sals's most plebeian turn of phrase.
"Dad did warn me that this would be one of the responses I'd get," Sals chirped and smiled disarmingly, "don't worry about it."
For once in his life Draco knew what it was like to see Mother utterly speechless; he would savour this moment until the day he died.
"How very Slytherin of him," Draco thought.
Sals had called his mum "Mrs M" to put her in her place. It was a very subtle way of telling Narcissa Malfoy that she had forfeited the respect she expected to be shown from a mere boy, through her little display of petulance.
Draco was quite miffed and so embarrassed by her behaviour. How very unseemly and equally unSlytherin of Mother, indeed! However, Sals's put-down had gone some considerable way towards offsetting Draco's funk.
But Sals was certainly no mere boy, and Draco was beginning to admire his new friend. The blonde's interest in this Adonis may have been fuelled by pure animal lust and outright curiosity, initially, but it was rapidly mutating into something much more serious, at least for Draco.
Narcissa Malfoy soon overcame her embarrassment, and zealously began to supervise the fitting of Draco's school robes. However, she seemed ever conscious of Sals's presence, and avoided any interaction with the mysterious youth throughout the fittings.
This provided the boys with ample opportunity for private conversation, which was generally light-hearted and non-invasive, at least on Draco's part.
Draco had quickly decided that it would be of no advantage to push for information about his new friend, who, it seemed, had led a very secluded existence for most of his life, until today.
Eventually they hit a bump in the road, and it took Draco by surprise...
Draco had just said that Sals would like being in Slytherin, and the boy had responded with a strange look.
The blonde recalled that Sals had changed the subject earlier, when Draco had suggested that he would be sorted into his house. Draco decided not to force the issue now, so he changed tack.
"Well," he chirped, "whatever house you end up in, there's one ponce you won't have to endure this year."
"Harry Potter?" Sals asked; he was unreadable.
Draco looked around quickly, then swallowed a sigh of relief; his mother was, thankfully, out of earshot, and too engrossed with Madam Malkin to care.
This conversation wasn't going how Draco had anticipated; and he certainly did not want Mother adding her few Knuts worth to a situation that, his gut told him, could become rather strained.
"Yes," Draco answered warily, in hushed tones, "how did you know?"
Sals seemed to interpret Draco's sudden caution correctly; he lowered his own voice, to match Draco's.
"Dad has told me quite a bit about Hogwarts already, Draco," Sals replied, then raised an eyebrow suggestively.
When Draco did not react, Sals elaborated...
"We talked about Harry Potter," his expression intimated that this fact should not come as a surprise. "In some detail," he added.
"Why do I get the feeling that there's a sting in this little tale?"
Draco's tone was measured, but underscored with a wry smile.
Sals laughed, "Nice pun, Draco."
Draco appreciated Sals's reaction, but he did not want to side-track the topic. This was important, he knew it in his bones.
Once again Sals seemed to read Draco's feelings; he grew suddenly serious.
"Draco," he whispered, "I know what my dad thinks of him, ... and I know of your most public encounters with him."
"And?" Draco prompted, after what he considered an uneasy silence.
"And," Sals obliged, "I don't know what house I'll be sorted into next month, Draco. But I'm absolutely certain that I don't want to get swept up in petty clashes and animosities from the past."
Draco remained passive, waiting for Sals to get this off his chest.
When Severus Snape's son eventually smiled at Draco, he could not resist the urge to respond in kind. Draco felt the tension lift slightly, but he knew that Sals was not yet done.
"I don't share my father's opinions on Potter or house rivalry at Hogwarts, Draco; and I have absolutely no desire to get involved in such destructive behaviour."
Sals's tone was passionate, but he spoke quietly enough to maintain their privacy.
"I happen to admire Potter," Sals continued. "I think he's had a shit of a life to date, if only half of what I've heard is true. On top of that, he's faced Voldemort five times already, and he's screwed the crazy fucker on every single occasion! And yet..." he raised an eyebrow provocatively... "he's no older than you or me."
Draco was stunned by Sals's casual and contemptuous use of The Dark Lord's name, even though he'd already been exposed to Sals's outright disdain for Potter's nemesis.
Had such an outburst come from any other source, at any other time, Draco would have been quick to defend his... well, his parents'... master.
But... hearing Sals use Voldemort's name, and spoken so boldly, made Draco feel warm, and proud that he'd done the same, less than an hour ago. Well he'd thought it, at least, and that was a start... but a start to what?
That was what troubled Draco: he was drowning in the wake of Sals's confirmation of his earlier disturbing revelation. He needed time to assess the situation. Though he had one final enquiry...
"You knew I was hiding in that doorway, back in Knockturn, didn't you?"
But he never gave breath to the words. He swallowed them whole, and simply gaped at the beautiful boy, and tried to think of something else to say...
"Your father knows this, Sals?" Draco finally blurted aloud.
It seemed the sort of thing that one should say, having supposedly just heard this heresy for the first time... but that bird had flown, so he felt stupid instead.
"Does that really come as such a surprise, Draco?" whispered the tall, dark-haired youth, who, even now, was toying with Draco's emotions.
"My dad may think Potter is a brat... and he may treat him with disdain... but I can assure you, Draco: he supports Potter as much as Dumbledore does."
Draco made no attempt to hide his reaction to this statement; in any case he doubted that he could, just now. His carefully crafted Slytherin mask lay in tatters at his feet; he had no idea how he should react. He needed time to think.
Draco was vulnerable, totally vulnerable, for the first time in his life, and it was terrifying.
His father was in Azkaban, for who knew how long; only weeks ago, the Dark... Voldemort! had suffered another embarrassing defeat at Potter's hands, if the reports and rumours, not to mention Aunt Bella's incessant rantings, were all true.
On top of all that, the crazy fucker had given Draco a task to perform that, if not impossible, was dangerous enough to almost ensure his own failure and ultimate death.
Draco was suddenly left wondering where he should stand. He felt truly frightened, for himself and his family, and he felt utterly alone.
"To answer your first question, Draco," Sals startled him, "the one you chose not to ask..."
He smiled, and Draco froze again as Sals continued, "yes... both Dad and I knew you were there."
Draco began to shake, he wasn't even sure if it was from fear or anger.
"You just used Legilimency on me!"
He again suppressed what he was about to say.
Sals smiled and shook his head slowly.
"No, Draco," he whispered, "I did not invade your mind, I didn't need to, either time. You projected those thoughts directly at me. Any experienced Legilimens would have been able to hear your words, even though they never made it to your tongue."
"Sorry," said Draco very awkwardly, "I..."
"No!" Sals cried in a hushed voice.
They both looked up in a reflex to see if the women had heard him.
As soon as it was obvious that they'd not drawn an audience, they both laughed. But the relief was short lived, as Sals became suddenly serious.
"It is I who should apologise to you, Draco," Sals explained, "I did use Legilimency on you... back in Knockturn."
"But we only made eye contact once," cried Draco in contradiction, "it couldn't have been more than a fraction of a second."
Sals seemed embarrassed by that.
"I don't need very long," he hung his head low.
"I'm really sorry, Draco, I'll never do it again, I swear," he whispered, then flushed deeply.
Sals looked so beautiful and sincere that Draco wanted to believe him.
But the stunning youth had raped Draco's mind, and Draco felt violated and vulnerable.
"Draco," Sals looked at his own hands, as he fidgeted nervously, "Dad put his life on the line, back there, in Knockturn."
The tall dark youth looked up sharply and fixed Draco with his eyes, "and all because he loves me and he trusts you. If I hadn't asked him to do it, and he hadn't known you, Draco, he would never have risked his cover like that.
"I owed it to my father," Sals continued, as he held Draco's gaze, "to make sure that you could be trusted and that he was safe," he added.
They held their mutual gaze more intensely.
Draco was confused and angry, but, most of all, he was terrified by the sudden realisations that cascaded through his mind with this revelation.
First was the fact that this boy was far more powerful than Draco had imagined; second was the humiliating realisation that Draco had deluded himself: he was a far less accomplished Occlumens than he had believed; but most frightening of all was the fact that, if he had been so easily vanquished by a boy his own age, he had been a fool to believe that he had successfully Occluded The Dark Lord, back in June!
"You've just realised, haven't you!" Sals stated more than asked.
He looked saddened by Draco's plight.
"But there is an upside to all of this, you know," Sals added with a playful air.
"Oh yes?" Draco replied bitterly, abandoning any pretence to be upbeat.
"Yes," the stunning lad beamed, "you have me by your side."
Draco felt suddenly light headed, he forced himself to focus, and looked intently at Sals. It was the only way he felt he could tell this god that he trusted him; he was placing his life in Salazar Snape's hands.
"I swear that I will never invade your mind again, Draco, not even to save my own life. But I did it, this once, to save yours. I only looked for your thoughts on Voldemort, your parents, my dad and Harry Potter... that was all, I swear, Draco. I never invaded your most private thoughts, I could never do that to you, Draco... not to anyone."
"Potter?" whispered Draco in disbelief.
"Well," Sals replied grimly, "he is a key player in all of this, and you and he do have a history."
Sals paused for what seemed an eternity and, during that time, their eyes were locked in an intense gaze.
Finally Draco looked down at his own hands, for a second at most. But then he looked back up into Sals's eyes.
"Do you forgive me, Draco?" the taller boy cooed.
Draco simply nodded.
"Do you trust me, Draco?" Sals asked.
Draco simply nodded again.
When Draco looked up, one last time, he could not resist beaming at Sals, who already had a sincere smile on his own sweet lips, which eventually spread to his entire face.
"Time to think! Time to reassess!" Draco repeated to himself.
Then he allowed this newest of acquaintances to steer the conversation into gentler waters. At the same time, Draco diverted his own attention to the incredible array of physical encounters that fantasising over this stunning lad engendered.
Draco surrendered all of his thought processes to his genitals, and let his groin run away with his conscious mind. That was until his mother and Madam Malkin began to fit and refit his new robes.
One look at Madam Malkin solved the problem of his aching hard-on, which was thankfully almost respectable before he was forced to change robes.
After nearly an hour of tedious adjustments and even more tiresome fittings, Sals and Draco had all of their Hogwarts robes assembled before them.
Draco was left speechless when Sals took the cardboard box, into which his clothes were to be laid, and transfigured it into a finely crafted French armoire.
Even Draco's mother raised an eyebrow at the far more complex spell that packed the entire wardrobe into the exquisite cabinet in the blink of an eye.
But when Sals shrank the armoire to the size of his palm, then calmly slid the tiny package into the inside pocket of his waistcoat, which showed no evidence of the contents, Draco was truly agog.
What had impressed him most was the casual air with which Sals wove his magic, and the fact that all three spells were wandless and wordless!
Draco made no comment, but he drew a deep steadying breath before he turned to his mother.
"Sals and I are going to Flourish and Blotts, Mother. We're joining Professor Snape at Edburg's at four. Will you join us?"
"Not so fast, young man," carped Narcissa, "you still have the final fittings for your dress robes, before you go anywhere else."
Draco looked dejectedly at Sals, but he made no protest to his mother; he simply winced apologetically at the lad.
"Sorry, old man, this could take some time."
"That's okay, Draco. Why don't you give me your book list, and I'll get both our books and meet you at Edburg's. That way we'll have more time to devote to ice cream."
Draco fished his list from his robes and eagerly handed it to Sals.
"Excellent!" cried Sals, "first one there orders the ice-creams and selects a table; last one there shouts."
"You're on, Sals," Draco replied, before he sent his new friend a cheeky grin.
Sals took his leave of Narcissa Malfoy, then quickly departed.
Author's Note: It is still my intention to post at least one chapter per week. But I haven't been able to resist the urge to enhance these stories with my graphics [particularly the last few chapters of "Shattered Ceiling..."]. I've been flogging Photoshop to death; I sincerely hope that you think my efforts and the subsequent delays have been worth the wait.
If you are enjoying this, you might like my other two Nifty stories...
This is a two-chapter Potterverse short story [complete].
This is on-going and I'm updating it chapter-for-chapter with this story.
About thirty chapters of "Salazar Comes to Slytherin" were written nearly a decade ago, and are only now being updated for posting. I'm currently writing "Shattered Ceiling, Falling Sky" and trying to post the two stories in tandem, chapter-for-chapter, to keep pressure on myself to write "Shattered Ceiling" to schedule.
All feedback is appreciated via: firstname.lastname@example.org