Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter.

Thanks to my lovely beta, Modges, for looking this over for me.

This is set in my Sudden Changes universe and is AU.

Written for Round 1 of the Quidditch League FanFiction Competition. Go Magpies!

Lucius Malfoy refused to cry as he watched his daughter being taken away from him. He couldn't allow himself that small release. He had to stay strong for his wife and son. Even as his wife cried and raged at him, begging him to show some emotion, his stubbornness won out and he continued to maintain his facade.

After all, Malfoys never cried.

Times grew ever darker as he watched Draco grow up without his twin sister by his side. The steadily growing threat of the Dark Lord's return weighed heavily on his mind. Once more, he soundly cursed his father for dragging him into this hell, something he would never admit to anyone. Oh yes, Abraxas Malfoy was certainly an utter bastard of a man. His father adhered fanatically to the Dark Lord's teachings. Wouldn't the old man roll over in his grave if he found out the Dark Lord was really Tom Marvolo Riddle, the halfblood son of a Muggle?

As soon as Lucius had shown the slightest sign of discontent with his father's activities, Abraxas had immediately placed him under an old Malfoy family curse. One that forced a son to listen to and obey his father's every command. And so, Lucius Malfoy became a Death Eater. If the old man wasn't already long dead, Lucius would not hesitate to kill him himself.

Draco's fifth year was one of the worst for Lucius. The debacle at the Department of Mysteries nearly tore him apart. These were just children, children for Salazar's sake. They were the same age as Draco, as his lost daughter. In fact, every face he saw became hers, haunting him, taunting him. His time in Azkaban was nothing compared to the personal hell he lived in.

When he finally returned home, he learned that the Dark Lord had chosen to take up residence in Malfoy Manor. His wife was highly distressed, not only by their uninvited guest but by the untimely death of her favorite cousin. He could do nothing but hold her close as she cried into his chest.

And yet, he still did not cry.

Malfoys do not cry.

The day that Potter and his friends were brought to the Manor was a day he would never forget. It haunted his thoughts, invaded his dreams. The terror on their young faces was extremely hard to bear. He was incredibly proud of Draco that day, proud of him for not giving in to the pressure. His son knew who they were, hell, Lucius knew perfectly well who they were. But they fought down their horror and remained silent. That didn't stop mad Bellatrix from torturing that poor girl, of course. He screams of agony rang through the halls of the Manor. All he could think of was his daughter in Granger's place. He felt intense relief when they managed to escape but barely managed to make it to the lavatory before emptying his roiling stomach of its contents.

The war was over soon after that. With Narcissa saving the Potter boy, he was let off with a fairly easy sentence. It was certainly more than he deserved, even in his own opinion. However, he was home and his family was somewhat intact. The twins' seventeenth birthday as approaching fast, and as such, it was time to tell Draco about his sister. He reacted exactly as Lucius had expected him to, throwing a tantrum of epic proportions. He had found it necessary to stun the boy before he brought the Manor down upon them all. When he had finally awoken, Draco had immediately left the room but not before throwing Lucius a look of pure loathing. Narcissa was in tears, fearing that Draco would never forgive them. Lucius, however, knew he would. Draco did have quite a temper but he always came around eventually.

It was the twins' seventeenth birthday and all enchantments on his daughter would break. Once they did, their family would be immediately notified and they would finally be able to find her.

It was a very tense day, all three Malfoys waiting anxiously for the news. But it never came. By the time midnight had come and gone, all three felt numb and defeated. No notification could only mean one thing. His daughter was gone, forever.

Lucius stormed off, leaving his wife and son alone and barricaded himself in his study. He stood there, his head resting against the wall, one thought repeating over and over in his head.'This is my fault, all my fault.'

He began to drink steadily. Looking back, he supposed he was using it as a crutch. Using it to try to go beyond the darkness that he felt himself sliding into. The darkness that seemed to have taken over his life once more. About six months into his wallowing, Severus showed up in his study. As Severus took in his appearance, he was treated to a look of absolute disgust. After being told to get himself together, as he was not the only person suffering, Severus left. But not without threatening to hex himself within an inch of his life if he didn't shape up. He stopped the heavy drinking and began spending more time with his family, trying to be grateful for the fact that his wife and son were both still alive.

It was completely unexpected when it happened. The morning of Draco's eighteenth birthday found them enjoying breakfast in their dining room. Lucius was trying to ignore the ever present pang in his chest at the absence of his daughter. It came at a great shock when a loud pop interrupted their meal. There, hovering over the plate of bacon, was a letter. He saw Narcissa eyeing it with wariness, yet he also saw a glimmer of hope in her eyes. He watched as she slowly opened it and as she almost immediately broke down into tears. He pushed back from the table and rose from his seat. Taking the letter from Narcissa, he saw what he had been waiting for all these years. He saw the notification that all enchantments on his daughter have dropped. He couldn't, even to this day, explain what he was feeling when he read that his daughter was still out there. Barely giving his wife time to pull herself together, he grabbed her and Draco and let the magic pull them to their daughter.

The three popped into a rather nice living room. He heard a bang and then someone entered with their wand drawn. It wasn't his daughter, rather it was Harry Potter. He narrowed his eyes at the sight. The boy had rarely been heard from since the end of the war. Was his daughter living here with him? He was slightly aware of the argument going on between Draco and Potter when he noticed someone else enter the room. It was her, it was his daughter. Gods, she was beautiful, looking just like her mother. He was so engrossed with just looking at her, that he almost missed the look of terror on her face. He saw Narcissa step towards her but she practically flung herself behind Potter. She then took off running up the stairs. He briefly wondered if that pain in his chest was the feeling of his heart breaking.

Things were tense in the Manor after that. He knew that both Narcissa and Draco held him responsible for the reception they received. He blamed himself as well. If he hadn't been a Death Eater, Narcissa would have been able to watch her daughter grow into a beautiful young witch. Draco would have been able to grow up with his twin. In the weeks that followed, Narcissa seemed to have forgiven him. He knew she was spending time with their daughter and he couldn't help but be jealous of that.

The day he discovered his daughter's identity was the second worst day of his life. second only to the pain of giving her away. His jealousy reduced him to yelling foul and untrue things at her, even as he could hear his own brain screaming at him to stop. As his disparagement of her character, she whipped out a wand he had hoped never to see again. Bellatrix' wand. She advanced on him, pointed the wand directly at his chest and screamed at him. When she was finished with him, she had rushed from the room, leaving him in shock at his own actions.

After yet another argument with Draco, Lucius had retreated once again to his study. he poured himself glass after glass of firewhisky as his mind was assaulted by memories of moments spent with his daughter. Sneering at her in Diagon Alley in her second year, Dolohov almost killing her in the Department of Mysteries, Bellatrix torturing her right in front of him. Every family has bad memories and the Malfoys were certainly no exception. As the painful memories replayed over and over in his mind, he laid his head down on his desk and did the one thing Malfoys never, ever did.

He cried.

Prompts used:

(9) stubborn(ess)

(11) "Every family has bad memories" Mario Puzo

(13) beyond the darkness

AN: Thanks for reading!