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Disclaimer: J.K Rowling owns Harry Potter. Also the term Guardian is an Andrea Cremer concept.

Dissolved Girl

Chapter 2: Here's Your New Habitat

"You can apparate?" Draco looked surprised.

"Of course I can." Chryssa pulled out a wand, not looking particularly offended. Narcissa closed her hand around Chryssa's wrists, and they disapparated. They arrived in front of a very impressive set of gates, leading up to a suitably impressive mansion. Chryssa whistled though her teeth slowly. These people have some serious dough.
She wasn't particularly fond of money herself. Sure, she understood its use, and what it got you in this life. She didn't dislike worldly possessions. But she often couldn't help imagining a world in which people gave and shared freely, without any need for trade or currency. Surely the world had been like this once? Perhaps a very long time ago…

You like? Draco looked over at her smirking, as the three walked up the very long driveway towards the house. She looked at him, suddenly impressed.

I like more the measure of control you've gotten over that in such a short space of time. She raised an eyebrow at him, but her didn't explain, or communicate anything to her for quite a while.

Chryssa is a pretty name.

She grimaced, but was spared from responding by Narcissa's abrupt stop, as she realised they were at the doorway. A generic looking middle aged man stepped out of the house, as if by some unspoken order. He stooped to pick up Chryssa's luggage, bowed his head politely towards the Malfoys, and led them into the house.

It was gorgeous, Chryssa thought grudgingly. She wasn't one to be easily impressed by large; extravagant displays of wealth, but she had dreamt of living in a house like this with her father and brother. Or maybe someplace even bigger, and the whole pack would live together. Without having to struggle for work as life-riskers, because of how they were born. She certainly considered their birth-right and attached abilities a gift, but they were treated more as an obligation. She sighed, and pushed away the rebellious thoughts. She followed Draco, on Narcissa's command, and they traipsed through the hallway, down a corridor, and up a flight of stairs.

I'll be following you like a lost lamb, in case I get lost in here. Chryssa thought ruefully.

I thought your kind had flawless directional and navigational skills? Like some kind of inbuilt four point spell?

She looked at him sideways. We do. I was kidding.

He didn't say anything in response to that, but grinned as her caught her peeping at him.

"You're to stay in this room, next to mine." He told her, glancing quickly at her to gauge her reaction. "It's not adjoining, more's the pity," he smirked again, as her cheeks flushed. "But it's close enough to ensure, um, safety will be my guess. And I can conjure up a door, if you prefer." He resisted the slight urge to pout as she shook her head.

Chryssa entered her designated room, her eyes wide as took it in. Boy am I lucky Indy was busy on assignment. It was lovely. More luxury than she was used to. High ceilings, neutral colours, not too sparsely furnished, but not crowded. She had a queen-sized bed, more pillows than anyone could possibly need, a couple of spindly legged tables, a vanity setup, with a small stool and a large mirror, a beautiful chandelier hanging from the ceiling. There wasn't very much in the way of ornaments, just a few rather lovely candle-holders. The window was huge. For the first time, she was pretty glad to have gotten this job, and not just for the money it would make for her father.

What do you think? Draco was lounging in the doorway, awaiting her verdict.

Can I sleep outside? She looked round at Draco, not hiding her slight intimidation. He laughed.

"Sure, shall I pitch you up a tent in the grounds?" He fell silent, still grinning, as she threw him a look.

"I'm not used to being given such a liberty by those who hire me," she smiled, hoping she looked grateful. "I've even been stationed outdoors once."

"Seriously? I was kidding! Someone actually put you outside, like a guard dog?" He broke off awkwardly, hearing himself. Chryssa just laughed.

"Yup. It wasn't that bad, I was given a kind of… shed for shelter." She laughed again, at his look of horror. "I bet you couldn't survive one weekend of camping!" Her eyes crinkled.

"I'll take you up on that sometime." She looked amused, though not as much as him as he clocked her expression at his next words. "Now that we've arranged our first date, we should maybe go through the schedule for the next couple of weeks. Don't you think so, Flower?"

She grimaced again, at the play on her name. "Nothing gets past you. Though it's 'golden flower'."

Draco chuckled. "And your last name is Sun. Explains the tat'." He looked at his palm again, at the tiny delicate sunflower. It really wasn't very noticeable. Chryssa sat on the bed.

"So. Much as I like my business after my pleasure, shall we get down to it?" As a saucy grin crept across Draco's face, she winced again. What the hell is wrong with me? It's like every second sentence I say to him sounds like an invitation! She resisted the urge to bury her head in her hands.

"Right. We have dinner at seven, every night. Breakfast and lunch are pretty casual. Breakfast will be served at eight a.m. and it will not be cleared away until half past ten. Lunch is put out at one, but more often than not, we eat it separately, if at all, and you can just go into the kitchen, and ask for whatever if you aren't up for being at the table at a certain time," he faltered. "Unless you'd like to… you know, hunt. We have a wood." He looked a little uncomfortable. She smiled, revealing her canines again. To her disappointment, he didn't flinch.

"Sometimes I probably will," she told him. "Though it will be in the evening. I don't want to cause any alarm. But so far, I'm good, anything else?"

"Well, until school starts, you don't have to get up by a certain time, the rest of us certainly aren't. If we're ever too late for breakfast, we can just ask for something from the kitchen. You pretty much have a free reign in the house, aside from the ground floor. My father prefers we don't go there…" he hesitated again, more nervously this time, "unless we're asked. You can explore the grounds to your heart's content, and as I'm next door, you can ask me if you ever need anything, plus you'll at least have company and entertainment in the form of myself." He smirked again, as she rolled her eyes. "Any questions?"

"Yes. Why do I feel like an honoured guest, rather than an employee?"

Draco laughed. "My mother. She likes to look after any company, not to mention that even though she's paying, she feels grateful towards you. It's not a bad thing. Take full advantage." His grin brought a small smile to her own lips. "Tomorrow can be a day pretty much dedicated to leisure. We have nothing planned, and I think my mother is hoping you'll use it to better acquaint yourself with the place, and us. Is there anything you'd like to do tomorrow?"

"Spend it with you?" Chryssa cringed inwardly again. "Uh, I mean, the faux pack-bond will be stronger, the more time we spend together."

"I see. In that case, should we perhaps be sharing a room?"

"N-no!" She stammered, trying to remember the last time she'd had so little control over the direction of any conversation. "That won't be necessary. I'll teach you enough about control in our waking hours, trust me."

Draco looked slightly disappointed. "Right. So tomorrow is bonding time," he eyed her resigned expression again. "Then the following day, we are to go to Diagon alley with my mother. She and I have a little business to attend to; but mostly, we need to pick up your school supplies." Chryssa nodded, as he paused, then he continued. "We'll be picking up your books, supplies for the subjects you've chosen," he looked curious at this, "my mother told me you sent an owl out, once you decided to take the job."
She nodded again. A list of subjects along with a form had been sent to Luke, the first time he and Narcissa had corresponded. With her only possible rival for the job already on assignment, she'd filled out the form immediately, and owled it back as soon as her application was confirmed.

"We'll go into that when we're in Diagon alley. I believe my mother has a copy of your chosen subjects, and we'll use it as a kind of shopping list. We also need to get your school robes fitted, as well as a set or two of casual robes and dress robes." He eyed her muggle style clothing disapprovingly.

"Unnecessary." Chryssa replied with a smile. "When I'm not wearing a uniform, I'll be wearing whatever clothes I see fit, regarding comfort, convenience and appearance. Robes don't come first in any of those categories for me."

He huffed, but looking as she did in what she was wearing, he couldn't think of a decent argument.

"Fine. It's late now, feel free to come down with the kitchens and eat, but for tonight, I'll leave you to it. See you in the morning."

"I think I'll shake down, get some rest," she told him. "Goodnight Draco."

His eyes passed over her a final time that night, before he gently closed the door.

"Goodnight… Chrys."

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