sixteen

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DEATH EATERS IN HER HOUSE could not ruin her parade on Christmas morning.

Per tradition, Celestia started the morning on the brink of sunrise and was jumping up and down on Draco's bed. He had locked his door, but an house elf easily unlocked it for her and he woke up with curses falling out of his mouth.

After rousing the rest of her friends, they were stumbling down the stairs and racing towards the sitting room. The room looks exactly as it did last night, but that does not remove the Christmas bliss that fills their veins.

Draco and Celestia had learnt of the muggle Santa tradition when they were younger, but no amount of begging would bend his parents into doing 'such a stupid tradition'. Still, the sight of the sitting room adorned in Christmas decorations was enough to make Celestia's heart swell.

They had decorated the room only the week by hand. No house elves had helped, nor did any of their parents or the grumpy Death Eaters that would occasionally pass by and scoff under their breaths.

The Christmas tree was decorated with strategically placed ornaments, with red, blue, yellow and green glittering fairy lights wrapped around it. Presents were overflowing from the bottom of the tree, all mismatched wrapping paper when they had run out of a roll. Some of the presents were wrapped horribly, curtesy of Draco refusing to let anyone else wrap his presents.

The Christmas tree was not the only decoration in the room, however. Along the fireplace is tinsle, five homemade stockings stuffed with smaller presents from each other and the house elves. The stockings looked atrocious. They had made stockings for each other, obvious by the different handwriting that showed their names on each stocking.

Tiredness a foreign feeling, Celestia skids across the floor and begins pulling out the presents. She passes them around based on the tag with their names, setting them into piles. Narcissa and Lucius had become more scarce during Christmas, and it was no surprise neither of them were awake. Still, they had bought them presents.

House elves bring them hot chocolate and eggnog, as they do every year. Wrapped in blankets, cuddling up by the fire, ugly Christmas sweaters pulled on, the group begins unwrapping their gifts.

Not once do the wide smiles leave their faces. They had money, they could buy anything they wanted; but these gifts were more sentimental. Some were expensive, so expensive that even Draco's jaw dropped. Others were handmade, or some things so cheap that Lucius would shit his pants if he knew.

From Pansy, she got many candles, some handmade that smelt absolutely horrible but it was the thought that count. Pansy had also gotten her more utensils to annotate her books with, something Celestia had been talking about doing for months.

Draco had bought her a photo album and an expensive camera; so that she can begin documenting their lives. He had also given her some of his clothes that no longer fit him, but were still big on her. One good thing about having a brother — or brother-like figure — is being able to steal their clothes.

Blaise had gotten her a ton of notebooks and scrapbooks, claiming that Draco had tried to steal his idea. He had also bought her a locket, and inside was a picture of the five of them at the Quidditch World Cup last year. The picture was moving, and you could see the pure happiness on thier faces. The way Celestia is curled into Theo's side and has an arm wrapped around Pansy, and how Pansy was insulting Draco and how his eyes crinkled as he laughed, the way Draco was elbowing Blaise as Blaise tried to put two fingers up behind his head.

Celestia would never admit to choosing favourites, but Theo's gift was up there. He had somehow gotten her the first edition of Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, a special edition of the Anne of Green Gables series and The Picture of Dorian Gray. Not only had he gotten her books, but he had also bought her some knick-knacks. He got her a ton of socks with silly designs on them, one stating 'fuck off, I'm reading', a tote bag to carry the books in, and pins about books she had already read.

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