Disclaimers:  I do not own Harry Potter or any of its characters.  This story is purely for entertainment purposes only.  I am
making no money from this.

Notes:  Ron waits for word on Draco and his children.

Family Secrets

Part Twenty-Three

Ron stared at the door leading to the Hospital Wing.  If it were possible, he probably would have been able to burn a hole
through it with just his eyes, since he had been staring at the same point for a good two hours now.  Around him, a veritable
crowd had gathered, students and teachers alike, all of them waiting for word on how Draco was faring.

A scream echoed throughout the hall and Ron winced, knowing that it had come from his husband.

“Move aside!  Get out of my way!”  A loud voice demanded.

Ron turned, watching as Lucius Malfoy pushed his way through the crowd, his lovely wife trailing along behind him, holding
his hand.  It was plainly obvious that Mrs. Malfoy had been crying, as he eyes were all red and puffy.

Mr. Malfoy swept past onlookers, heading to the door.  However, Professor Snape stepped in front of him, blocking his path.

“What are you doing here, Lucius?”  Snape demanded, crossing his arms over his chest in an intimidating manner.

Lucius glared at the teacher.  “I am here to see to the welfare of my son!”  He spat angrily.  “Now, get out of my way!”

“Even if you were allowed to go in, I wouldn’t let you pass.”  Snape hissed.  “You abandoned the boy.  I won’t allow you to
disturb him now.”

Ron frowned.  He didn’t want to hear this, not now.  He turned to them, glaring at the two men.  “Will both of you please shut

Snape turned, looking at Ron with wide eyes.  Apparently, he hadn’t thought that Ron would ever yell at him.  It was highly
unusual for students to yell at their teachers.  Lucius Malfoy simply glared at Ron, as if he were something highly disgusting
that he wished to step on.  However, he was stopped from doing or saying anything by his wife.

“Ron is right to yell at you.”  She chided.  “This is not the time or place to be arguing.”  She swiftly moved to Ron’s side,
wrapping an arm about his shoulders.  “Has there been any word?”  She asked him.

Ron shook his head.  “No . . . Professor Dumbledore and Madam Pomfrey haven’t come out yet.  I don’t know what’s
happening.”  He sighed, hearing as Draco screamed yet again.

This time, however, the scream was followed shortly by the shrill cry of an infant.  Ron felt his hopes rising, his heart flipping
joyously at that single sound.  In mere moments, a second cry joined in with the first and Ron could feel the tears falling from
his eyes.  His children . . . they were finally here.

Still . . . was Draco okay?

Ron’s patience wore thin as he waited for news on Draco and his children.  Was Draco alive?  Were the children healthy?  He
was consumed with dread.  The sound of the babies' cries had given him hope, but things could still go wrong.

Harry and Hermione had never left his side.  They were as they had been, standing with him, giving him support, offering him
silent comfort.  Lucius Malfoy paced nervously, casting quick glances at the door every now and then.  The man’s behavior
left Ron confused though.  He had thought that the elder Malfoy didn’t care at all about Draco’s welfare . . . the man had
disowned Draco after all.  Perhaps the man had finally seen the error of his judgement.

Narcissa stood, watching her husband, wringing her hands together in nervousness.  She had long since left Ron’s side and
now stood beside Professor Snape, who looked just about as worried as everyone else in the hall.

Finally, the door opened a crack and Ron jumped forward, his heart racing as he watched Professor Dumbledore step out.  The
aged wizard looked tired, yet he smiled at Ron when he noticed him.  He took a glance around the hall, noting the vast number
of people waiting on word of how Draco was doing.  

“I see that there are a good many here anxious to know of Draco’s health.”  He spoke.  He set his hand down on Ron’s
shoulder, nodding ever so slightly.  “I am happy to say that Draco will recover completely from this.  And you, Ron, are now
the father of a son . . . and a daughter . . . two perfectly healthy children.”

Ron would have jumped for joy if he hadn’t had another question to ask.  “Can I see Draco?”  He asked, wringing his hands

Even if Dumbledore had said no, Ron knew that he wouldn’t stay out here any longer.  He had to go in and see Draco.  He had
to be sure, to see for himself whether Dumbledore was telling him the truth or not.  For some reason, he just had to see Draco
with his own eyes, as if all of this wouldn’t be real unless he did.

Professor Dumbledore nodded and opened his mouth to reply.  However, Ron didn’t wait to hear whatever he had to say.  He
simply pushed past the headmaster, rushing into the Hospital Wing and over toward the bed where he had last seen Draco.   
The curtain that would leave Draco with privacy had been drawn around his bed, so Ron couldn’t see anything more than a
silhouette of his husband’s form.

He was stopped in his tracks by Madam Pomfrey.  The witch’s apron was stained in blood and other bodily fluids, her face
dotted with beads of sweat.  She grabbed Ron’s shoulder, looking at him with a smile on his face.

“Before you take one more step, I feel I must advise you of certain things.”  She said, calmly.

The clatter of footsteps behind him, made Ron turn.  Lucius and Narcissa Malfoy rushed over and stopped just behind him.  
“How is Draco?”  Narcissa asked Madam Pomfrey.

Madam Pomfrey smiled.  “He’ll be well, given time to rest.  Now, I do not want any of you causing him stress.  His health is
very fragile right now.”  She looked more to Lucius than anyone else when she said that.  “I’ve given him a potion to help him
relax.  He should be falling asleep soon enough.”

Ron nodded.  “Yes, of course.”

With a kind smile on her face, Madam Pomfrey allowed them to pass.  “Your children are beautiful, Ron.”


Draco tiredly blinked his eyes.  He would have rubbed them to clear the weariness away, but his hands were currently
occupied.  Cradled in each of his arms was a newborn infant . . . his children.  He still couldn’t believe that he had actually
done it, that he had given birth to these two precious angels.  It was simply amazing to him, to even think that he had been a
part in creating them.

He smiled down at his son and daughter.  Madam Pomfrey and Professor Dumbledore had cleaned them up after having gotten
Draco sufficiently tended to.  His body was still sore, and he was tired, but at least it was over with.  He had his two children .
. . his son and daughter . . . and he had never seen anything more beautiful than them.

His daughter most definitely took after her father, as her hair was red.  But Draco’s son . . . well, at first glance it didn’t even
look as if he had hair, but that was simply because it was so fine a shade of blonde that it was difficult to notice.

Draco looked up as he heard a cloth rustling and saw as Ron pushed aside the curtain that divided his bed from the rest of the
room.  Draco smiled . . . however, the expression faded as he saw his father, Lucius Malfoy walking toward him.  What did
the man want with him now, to try and force him to give up his children?  Draco sighed, deciding to ignore the man for now .
. . Ron was here and he deserved to see his children.

“Hey, Draco.”  Ron smiled, rushing to Draco’s side.  He slid his hand down along Draco’s cheek, just lightly brushing the
skin.  “How are you?”

“Tired . . . but fine.”  Draco sighed, turning his attention back to the infants.

“Oh, Draco . . . they are simply beautiful!”  Draco’s mother announced, all but running around to the other side of the bed.  
“May I hold one?”

Draco nodded, actually grateful to allow her this.  He just so tired.  “Go ahead, I don’t think she’d mind being held by her
grandmother.”  He smiled, nodding his head toward his baby daughter.

Narcissa Malfoy tenderly lifted the child into her arms, supporting the head as she cradled her.  “She looks just like you, Ron.”  
Narcissa smiled.

Draco snickered at that, feeling as Ron carefully lifted their son from his arms.  He looked up at his husband, a smile easily
spreading across his face as he watched Ron coo at the newborn.

“Draco . . .”  Lucius spoke, stepping closer to the bed.

Draco sighed, tiredly turning to face his father.  “What do you want?  I thought you never wanted to see me again.”  Draco
said bitterly, glaring his best at his father.

Draco barely noticed as both Ron and his mother quietly slipped away, leaving Draco to deal with his father alone.  His
attention was solely focused on Lucius, on the man that had thrown Draco aside when he had refused to do what Lucius had
ordered him to.

Lucius shook his head, standing beside Draco’s bedside.  “Draco . . . I was wrong.”

Those four simple words shattered Draco’s composure.  Never in his entire life had he ever heard his father actually admit that
he had been wrong, not so sincerely anyway.  Draco shook his head, denying his tears.  No, he wouldn’t lose control like this,
not now.  It wasn’t enough that the man had admitted he was wrong.  Lucius Malfoy had hurt him and Draco couldn’t forgive
his father so easily.

“You dare to say that to me now?”  Draco asked, incredulously.  “How could you do this to me?  You disowned me, ignored
me for the past five months . . . and you think you can just walk back into my life?”

“No . . . I don’t expect it to be so easy.”  Lucius sighed, hesitantly laying a hand on Draco’s arm.  “I know it will take time for
me to repair the damage I have done.”  He took a deep breath, letting it out slowly.  “You are my son, Draco . . . and I was
wrong to force my views on you.  I would be happy to accept your children and husband into my house as family.  I am sorry
for what I have done to you and only hope to one day make it up to you.  I love you, Draco, and I am proud of the man that
you have grown to become.”

Draco’s bottom lip quivered.  This was everything he had ever wanted to hear.  His father loved him, was proud of him.  With
a stifled cry, Draco sat up, throwing his weakened body against his father’s chest, wrapping his arms around the older man.

Lucius eagerly returned the embrace, running a strong hand through Draco’s hair to smooth it back.  It was more than Draco
had ever expected . . . his father did still love him.  He was content to just stay there, to be held by his father’s strong arms.  
He could very well fall asleep like this.

“So . . . Draco . . . what are you and Ron planning on calling these little angels?”  Narcissa Malfoy asked.

Draco pulled away from his father’s embrace, turning to cast a smile at his mother.  “Well . . . Ron and I have already decided
on the names.  It took awhile, but we finally came to an agreement about them.”

“Believe me, it did take a long while.”  Ron added.

Lucius smiled a little, reaching out to tickle the cheek of his granddaughter.  “So what are the names of these children I shall be
spoiling rotten?”  He asked with an amused tone.

“Our son is Nicholas.”  Ron said, nodding down at the infant he held.

“And our daughter will be called Lia.”  Draco smiled.

Narcissa smiled brightly.  “What fine names those are.”

Someone cleared their throat and Draco looked over to see Madam Pomfrey glaring at all of them, her foot taping against the
stone floor.  She waited until everyone looked in her direction before speaking though.

“Okay, I think it’s time for all of you to leave.  Draco needs to get some sleep.”  Madam Pomfrey chided, walking over to take
one of the twins.  “As do these little darlings . . . they’ve all had quite the long day.”

“Quite right.”  Lucius replied.  He turned to Draco.  “Sleep well . . . your mother and I will be staying in Hogsmeade should
you need anything.”

Draco nodded, watching as Madam Pomfrey cared for his children.  Everyone else left as quickly as they had entered.  Ron
gave Draco a sweet kiss before he departed though, one that Draco happily remembered as he drifted off into slumber.

To Be Continued . . .