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The Formalities of Etiquette

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Chapter One

All of my life, I have been told who I am. As a pureblood omega, it is my duty to get married and pass on my husband's generation by having children. I have never been very keen on any of these things, but my father has always been stubborn about his views of things. Perhaps it would be best to relive some of my childhood to offer you a clearer picture.

I grew up in a vast mansion placed right in the heart of a great estate. The sky was so beautiful when you woke up, painted as the background to the most beautiful forests and fields surrounding the estates. As soon as I was old enough to walk, I would make it a routine to run out onto my patio to look at the sunrise. Very often I would beg my father for hours on end to allow me to run around the grounds, he would often not want me tumbling around, but he could never say no to me for long. I would spend hours running around in the grass and trying to climb trees. I would even create secret areas only for myself to know of, and mark special trees that were the best for climbing. My mother used to complain that I would always toddle inside smelling of grass and water.

In addition to running around the estate in my earliest years, I grew up secluded from people. In fact, my toddler years were often spent alone. But I suppose everything changed one faithful day when a young alpha boy by the name of Theodore Knott came over with his family to visit. As a young omega, I had no idea what he wanted, and as a young child I didn't know why there were strangers in my home. I will surmise that perhaps he didn't know what was happening as well. This meeting set into motion many things though. In fact, I think that this is an opportune place to start.

Draco Malfoy blinked owlishly at the young alpha before him from where he stood behind his mother. He looked towards his father with a question in his eyes. When the pair caught each other's gaze, Lucius nodded at his offspring as Draco felt a hand from his mother nudging him forward. He looked at the other boy as the young alpha stepped up towards the omega with a smile.

“Hi, I'm Theodore Knott! Do you want to be friends?” The question itself caused Draco to take a step back, let alone his perky disposition. Theodore seemed to deflate slightly at the young omegas reluctance to accept his friendship and looked towards his own father for guidance.

“Now Draco, be nice and say hello to the young man,” Lucius encouraged his son. Draco shook his head and squeezed his small hands into fists behind his back.

But Draco’s father was a man of persistence and commitment. Meaning, if his father had told the Knott’s that Theodore would be receiving a new friend, then his son would have no choice but to comply with his father’s wishes. So Lucius glanced at his son one last time to show that Draco could not whine his way out of the situation. This seemed to be enough because in the next few seconds, a soft voice rang out saying:

“Hello Theodore, I would be honored to be your friend,” Draco said with a small smile. With only a few words, the young Malfoy seemed to turn Theodore into the happiest alpha on the planet. He gave Draco a blinding smile and turned to his father with a stream of demands to go play outside with his new friend.

“Why don’t you two go play outside?” Narcissa suggested with a tight smile on her face. Draco’s face lit up with excitement, matching Theodore’s expression perfectly. The two boys quickly ran outside to play in their own small section of perfection.

So yes, Theo and I became fast friends. We were constantly exploring the outdoors together, taking on the “world” by storm. I was content to this life for a long while until I turned six, nearly three years later. I was informed that in five years I would be attending the School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and needed to start training. Being a wizard was something I was always aware of, mostly because it was always blatantly shoved into my face. But my parents always seemed to care more about my dynamic and omega training more. It seemed, in fact, that my parents used the “wizarding tutoring” as a ploy to lengthen my hours of omega training.

I had the best teacher at the time, Mrs. Norvick. She was a russian tudor who was as quick with a ruler as she was with a math problem. Though her lessons were tough, she always managed to work in some kindness into every lesson. She was the one who introduced me to my biggest inspiration, yet worst role model, Persephone Malfoy. My grandmother was the most beautiful woman you would have ever had the pleasure of knowing and if you ever saw her moving portrait, you would think it was painted by Hans Holbein himself. But, she stood for everything that my parents enforced. Her portrait contained a fan that she held in her hand at all times. A fan that was given to me.

When I was eight years old, I received a birthday gift from my parents like no other. It was a fan that had the Malfoy crest on it. This fan was used and passed on from generation to generation, and now it was placed into his young hands. It was around this time that the fashion guidelines my mother had enforced onto me had also upgraded to new and different looks. This even went as far as putting me in the fluffiest dress she could find, that resulted in a fit of laughter from Theodore. But soon a comfortable cross between feminine and masculine was created that I was content with, though I knew it would change once my figure did.

My mother was a story all her own. Not only did she encourage more feminine looks for me, which were not too far fetched from what normal pure-blood omegas were put through, but the only good advice she ever gave him wasn't something most mother's would say. She sat him on her bed as she brushed his hair as she talked:

“My dear, you are an Omega, much like myself. This means you will always be seen as weak and you will have to use that to your advantage.”

Little Draco turned to look at her with a confused look on his face. She smiled softly and sat the brush down on the night stand close to her. Moving closer to him, she cupped his face and continued.

“You will have to be cunning and ready for anything. Always be able to come up with a plan and never be afraid to manipulate anyone. Climb to the top my child, and never let anyone drag you down.” His mother finished by softly kissing his forehead and ushering him to bed.

Even at the small age of eight, I knew from then on that I had to do whatever it took to become the best omega I could be. If I could do that, I would get to the top and never look back down.

My grooming to be the perfect omega continued to progress into more dark and radical behaviors. When I was nine, I discovered reading for pleasure and all it had to offer. I found books that told of more than the history of events I’ve already memorized. Instead, I found the stories of daring adventure and omegas who stood for something more than marriage and children. They were all ripped from me though, after my father had discovered me digging around in search of our telescope after reading of such an adventure where a man got lost in the stars. After that event, the library was locked off and my outdoor time was restricted. But that was just how things worked out for me.

Acceptance creeped into my mind after so many years of training and grooming. It was on the eve of my eleventh birthday, when I was told that my studies were complete, did I finally feel a last part of me snap. It was a part that was hoping I would win a fight against my parents, one that I was never willing to start. But I didn’t start or win a fight, I just lived through it all and came out as my parents had wanted, and I couldn’t even be mad at them because this is what I wanted too. So I would go to Hogwarts as I was and allow myself to become what they wanted.

Beautiful rays of sunlight came through the thin curtains hanging over the patio door. The occupant on the bed grunted and rolled over in agitation of the sun. Draco blinked his eyes open and glanced down at his silken sheets. Laying scattered on the bed lay a tattered copy of ‘Little Women’, abandoned notes with messy writing sketched across the pages, and a quill that had a trail of spilled ink leading to it. He gasped when he saw the ink and hurriedly grabbed the quill.

The young Omega laid it next to the inkwell on his desk and hurriedly stored his notes and book under his mattress.

After summoning a house-elf to clean his sheets, he threw open his patio doors and watched the tail-end of the sunrise. He smiled softly at the beauty before him while his mind thought of plans for the day ahead. It was only when he had really stopped to think of what plans he had for the day did he even remember that he would be going to Diagon Alley today. In his eleven years, he had only ever been out of the house a handful of times for social gatherings and other high-socialite endeavours. This meant that Diagon Alley had never been his parents first choice of location when going out. In fact, Draco had only successfully swayed his parents into allowing him to go once, and they only lasted half an hour before shoving him back towards the mansion. But now he would achieve a full day of escape and acting like every other regular witch and wizard his age!

Making quick time of his morning rituals, Draco raced down the stairs and into the living room of the mansion. He was wearing white undershirt with puffy sleeves and black trousers. He decided after much debate to also add a long and soft green jacket complimented the outfit and gave it a more feminine look that his mother loved. Come his thirteenth birthday his mother would push for more feminine dresses and skirts, followed by a sixteenth birthday that would hail full debutante gowns and the line between feminine and masculine would be broken. But for now, he was only eleven and trivial things such as that did not matter.

“I am ready to go now,” Draco announced as he rushed into the room. His mother startled from her seat where she was knitting and his father slowly looked up from his newspaper. The youngest Malfoy could quickly sense that they were going to try to play him and put up his walls in preparation.

“Why Dragon, whatever are you talking about?” Lucius inquired with a questioning look on his face. Narcissa looked at Draco with a blank face to see what her son would do. Draco groaned and twisted his coat in his hands before releasing the poor fabric and glaring at his father.

“You and mother promised that today I would be allowed to go to Diagon Alley for my supplies.” He stated softly to his parents. Many things have been recanted after “further deliberation” and he silently begged this would not join his fallen dreams.

He watched as his father rolled his eyes and rubbed his temples, thinking over what his son just said. His mother looked disinterested and went back to knitting with a bored expression. Draco paced around the room, barely tolerating the noise of the silence of his father’s thoughts. Finally came the sound of rustling news papers and his father's voice:

“Very well, we shall go to Diagon Alley.” Lucius said with a sigh of acceptance. Narcissa gave a small smile and nodded at Draco as she and Lucius stood to gather their things. Draco snickered to himself before running after his parents.

Once they had arrived in Diagon Alley, his parents walked in front of him while Draco walked behind them. He looked around at all of the shops with a big smile on his face. Many people his family passed gave them odd looks, ranging from disgusted to horrified. He just raised an eyebrow at them and lifted his chin in pride.

Was his family conceited, distrustful, and full of a long history of backstabbing traitors? Yes. But was that going to stop Draco from feeling pride for his family name and himself; like he said, his family was conceited, and so was he. Plus, it wasn't like everyone in his family was bad, if one good quote could come from his mother's mouth it would be that, “not every person from a bad family is necessarily evil. Take apples for instance, you wouldn't kill a whole orchard for one rotten tree now would you?”

Draco quickly caught himself before he let his mind wander too far and focused on what was going on around him in more detail. He watched the many witches and wizards as they went throughout their day. Some looked annoyed at having been dragged out of their comfortable homes for something as tedious as shopping. There were expressions of wonder on many children's faces, adults as well, probably mudbloods if Draco had to guess. But one person caught Draco’s attention, the face of a confused and frightened boy wandering around through Diagon Alley.

Draco cocked his head in assessment as he took in the young boy. He couldn't be any younger than Draco himself but looked much more vulnerable than anyone he had ever seen. The youngest Malfoy took a step out of line and towards the young boy, eyes following the figure as it slipped into Madam Malkin’s Robes for All Occasions. Draco looked almost entranced as he walked towards the store and he only snapped out of it when a hand grabbed his arms.

“Draco, what are you doing here?” the question came from a bubbly voice right into his ear. He startled and turned quickly to see Theodore Knott standing there with a smile on his face. Draco gave him a forced smile in return before looking back over his shoulder.

It wasn't like he wasn't happy to see his oldest friend, but his curiosity had already won over his nostalgic thoughts. But Theo hadn't been over in quite awhile, four months to be exact, and perhaps he should be paying more attention to him rather than a random boy. All sympathy was lost soon after fingers snapped in front of his face, forcing him to turn back and glare at Theodore.

“I’ll have you know that I am getting my supplies for school. What exactly are you doing lurking around here?” Draco snapped at the older boy. Theodore’s smile grew wider, probably at the satisfaction of knowing he has pissed Draco off.

“Same as you, no need to get pissy.” Theodore laughed as he gestured to his parents talking to Draco’s own. The latter rolled his eyes once more before glaring and finishing the argument with a final:

“You're insufferable.”

“Oh you wound me, my dear.” Theodore laughed loudly before quickly shutting up as their parents migrated closure to the two young boys. Draco raised an eyebrow at Theodore when he noticed how stiff his friend had gotten in the presence of his father before straightening up as well.

“Draco Malfoy, look how you’ve grown,” Theodore’s father complimented with a (fake) smile. Draco reciprocated his own smile and gagged inside his head before replying.

“Why thank you. It has been some time, hasn't it?” It took everything in him not to reply with a sharp retort or bold compback. Now despite his age, he was not stupid, and could tell that the older gentleman had always had a certain fascination with him. Draco knew that his parents were aware of this as well, making it a point to always be in the room with him while Theodore's parents were around, though the youngest Malfoy wasn't sure if their concerns were always for the right reasons.

Draco, already bored of the Knotts, turned to his own parents with a look of innocence painted onto his face.

“Mother, Father, I wish to go to Madame Malkin’s to get my robes, if it's not too much trouble.” Draco said sweetly. The perfect sentence too, short, to the point, and enough pleasantness to reel in the empathy of those around him.

“Oh darling what a splendid idea, why don't you accompany him Theodore?” Narcissa beamed at the two young boys. Theodore smirked at Draco who rolled his eyes in return and snatched the boy's wrist.

“Ouch! You have a very strong grip…” Theodore complained as he was dragged into the shop. It occured to Draco a few moments later that he never waited for Theodore's reply before dragging him inside the shop, but he quickly realized he didn't care.

As Theo rubbed his wrist, Draco scouted around for the boy he saw earlier. He ended up spotting him getting fitted for his robes and requested that the same be done for him, and quickly. Theo whined about how he already got his robes, which earned a slap upside the head from an apathetic Draco.

Finally he was called back and found the boy standing on a footstool and getting his robes tailored. He heard Theodore protesting as the curtain was closed before he could enter with Draco. The latter laughed lightly under his breath as he stepped into the stool next to the boy.

Using the cover of the robe slipping over his head, he allowed himself to steal a long glance at the boy before him. He looked uncomfortable to say the least, fidgeting with the side of the robe which was not being tailored.

“Hello there! Hogwarts, too?” Draco inquired with a smile, though it probably looked more or less like a sneer. It seemed that his boastful hello snapped the other boy out of his anxious silence, as he snapped his head up to look at Draco.

“Yes,” the boy answered, his voice was nearly a whisper. Well, there goes all the expectations Draco had. He thought that at least the boy would enjoy a little chat after Draco showed he didn't mean any harm. Well if the boy wouldn't humor him with a more talkative conversation, he would at least have a wall to vent to.

“My father's next door buying my books and mother's up the street looking at wands," Draco rattled off with a bored drawl. Really, he thought the boy would pipe into the conversation by now. "Then I'm going to drag them off to look at racing brooms. My father thinks that they are too dangerous for me, because of my...well, he just thinks I'm too “delicate”. But, I think I'll create a plan to get my own broom without him knowing, maybe even smuggle it into Hogwarts.”

Draco smiled to himself at the funny implication and looked over to observe the boy's reaction to what he was saying. When he only witnessed awkward staring towards the front of the room, he rolled his eyes and straightened up before continuing:

“Have you got your own broom?”

“No.”

“Play Qudditch at all?”

“No.”

“Me neither, like I said, too delicate. Guess we have something in common after all, right?” Draco laughed lightly and glanced over at the boy, only to see him finally looking towards Draco with confusion filling his eyes. The blond cleared his throat and looked back down at the robes before glancing up and asking, “so, do you know what house you'll be in?”

“No.”

Draco groaned and would've slapped his forehead if it was a proper thing to do in public. Instead, he continued on with his talking, glossing over the boy's obvious anxieties.

“Well, no one really knows until they get there, do they, but I know I'll be in Slytherin, all our family have been - imagine being in Hufflepuff, I think I'd leave, wouldn't you?" Draco gave a fake laugh that quickly ended when all he received from the boy was a grunt.

Finally accepting defeat, he decided to join the strange boy in staring out the window in front of them. He was allowing his mind to wander once again and was almost ten pages into his memorized copy of ‘Emma’ when he spotted a beast of a man walking outside the window. He blinked his eyes, and only when he realized what he was seeing was not in fact an illusion did he alert the other boy of the Giants presence.

“I say, look at that man!" Draco announced rather loudly as he nodded toward the front window. The giant was standing there, grinning at the boy and pointing at two large ice creams to show he couldn't come in.

"That's Hagrid," said the boy, a little excitement now lacing his voice. "He works at Hogwarts. "

"Oh,” stopped Draco. He didn't realize the giant was actually a...Hagrid, a man he knew very much about if his history lessons had anything to say for it, “I've heard of him. He's a sort of servant, isn't he?”

“He's the gamekeeper,” the boy faltered. Now he was closing in again, honestly it was becoming more bothersome then interesting to talk to the mysterious stranger.

“Yes, exactly. I heard he's a sort of savage. Lives in a hut on the school grounds and every now and then he gets drunk, tries to do magic, and ends up setting fire to his bed.”

“I think he's brilliant,” the boy stated coldly.

“Do you?” Draco teased with a slight sneer. “Why is he with you? Where are your parents?”

“They're dead,”

“Oh, sorry. I didn't realize," Draco mumbled. He's never dealt with...loss. It seemed like this whole conversation had become derailed into something that Draco did not want to be a part of. "But they were our kind, weren't they?”

“They were a witch and wizard, if that's what you mean.”

“I really don't think they should let the other sort in, do you? They're just not the same, they've never been brought up to know our ways. Some of them have never even heard of Hogwarts until they get the letter, imagine. I think they should keep it in the old wizarding families. What's your surname, anyway?”

The boy began to look very uncomfortable and was about to retort when Theodore fell through the curtain with an employee right behind him. He jumped up and dusted himself off before walking over the Draco.

“Ready to go?” Theodore asked him. Draco rolled his eyes and swatted at the designer who stepped away with an agitated look. Theodore glanced around the room before locking eyes with the boy and walking up to him. “Pretty scrawny alpha. Don't you think, Drake?”

Draco blinked in surprise before looking back at the supposed alpha. He didn't even think to smell him, but with Theo also being an alpha, he made it a goal to smell any “competition”. The boy looked at Theodore and Draco in confusion before deciding to take the cowards way out and walk out the door. Theodore laughed mockingly while Draco stood silently watching as the boy scurried towards safety. Theodore snorted one last time before turning to Draco.

“Your parents are pissed off that we were separated. We should probably catch up to them.” Theodore encouraged while he started to walk away in the same direction that the boy went. Draco rolled his eyes, of course his parents would be upset over something as tedious as a half-hour separation from his “protector”.

Later that night at dinner, the small family were discussing Hogwarts and certain restrictions and privileges Draco would have while attending. Draco listened with disinterested ears as his father talked about the Slytherin Common Room, his Uncle Snape, and his “friends” Crabbe and Goyle who would be accompanying him everywhere. In fact, it all bored him to death until one thing reached his ears.

“Harry Potter will also be attending school with you, and I heard he was visiting Diagon Alley today as well. You might have seen him, he is believed to be short and have black hair. Of course he also has that stupid scar…”

The rest of what his father said was cut off by the sound of Draco’s fork clattering onto the table as he dropped it with wide eyes. Slowly he connected the dots between the oh-so-famous Harry Potter and the boy he met in Madam Malkin’s.

“Draco! Mind your dinner manners, what has gotten into you?” Narcissa demanded as she and her husband shared bewildered looks. Draco locked eyes with his mother and smirked.

“Sorry mother, father, I just thought of something.” Lucius raised an eyebrow before continuing with his speech as if nothing happened. Narcissa seemed to grow a slight smile, the gears turning slightly in her head. While Draco took a sip of his drink and began to plan.