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Chapter 27: Crash
“OH, I AM GOING TO KILL SCOPRIUS!” I shrieked as I crumpled up the article and made to storm out of the room.
Ryan caught my arm, holding fast. “Oh, no, you aren't.”
I whipped around to face her, my teeth barred. “Yes, I am.”
She sighed, rolling her eyes, but grip still vice like. “Okay, I'll let you kill him. If you give me one good reason.”
“A reason?! Have you seen this?” I screeched, pointing at the wadded up newspaper on the floor.
“Yes, I have, Rose.” She said, her voice all high and mighty. “Numerous times, in fact.”
“Exactly.” I hissed, trying to wrench my arm from her grasp. “If you'll just excuse me, I have a Slytherin to murder.”
“But what does the article have to do with him? How is it his fault?”
I stopped, freezing in my escape efforts. How was this his fault? I had been so mad about Scorpius, I just automatically blamed him. It was like a reflex. Something bad happens, get mad at Malfoy. Simple, easy.
I felt myself take a sharp intake of breath, air shooting into my lungs. I ran my fingers through my hair. I fidgeted with my robes.
“Oh.” I finally got out.
Dom chuckled, finally making a sound after almost total silence.
I rubbed my hands across my face, and sank to the ground.
“What do I do?” The words came out in a breath, a defeated whoosh of air.
Ryan didn't smile, laugh or frown. “Apologize.”
Apologize. One word had never seemed so difficult. How do you apologize for destroying someone? For blaming them for every bad thing in your life, when really you were causing just as much bad in theirs? How do you get the words out? Where do you even begin?
“I'm sorry” didn't even seem to cut it.
Three days had passed since I'd returned to Hogwarts. The days had passed in a blur. My mind was reeling, my body functioning without consent from my brain. I was on autopilot.
“Rose?” Rowan waved a hand in front of my face, and I blinked rapidly, trying to focus.
I ran my tongue over my teeth, and rolled my shoulders back. “What?”
He looked me up and down. “Nothing really.... Are you okay?”
My eyes flitted around the room. I was vaguely surprised that I was in the Common Room, sinking into a chair, the fire crackling in front of me. I noticed I was boiling in my jumper. “Yeah, I'm fine.”
He chuckled. “You call this fine, Rose? You've been like a zombie for the past three days. You're starting to scare me.”
I blinked again, biting my lip now. “No, really, I'm fine. I'm going to go for a walk.”
I stood up fluidly, not bothering to wait for him to answer, and ducked out of the portrait hole. My feet took me away, following some path I didn't know.
I'd been walking for almost half an hour when I heard a name. My own.
I turned, staring blankly at the person in front of me. Tall. Dark hair. Green eyes.
It took me a second.
“Albus. Hi.” I said, staring up at him expressionlessly.
He glared down at me. “How are you?”
I thought about saying fine. The response I'd used for three days now.
“I don't know.” was what came out.
His eyebrows knit, but he continued to glare at me. “Try to tell me.”
“I feel...” I grasped for the word, trying to find one that fit how I felt. “Numb.”
He motioned for us to keep walking and I dragged my feet forward. “Why?” His voice was hard and pressing.
I ignored the question, going back to my thoughts from before. “What do you do when you hurt someone so badly, but you didn't know? When you've destroyed them? How do you apologize for that?”
He took a deep breath, but said nothing for a moment. “I don't know, Rose.”
I said nothing, just looked straight ahead as we passed painting after painting.
“This is all my fault.” I breathed, and again it all came crashing down on me, all the bad, all the hurt.
“Rose, it's not-” Albus tried to console me, but I wouldn't let him.
“It really is, everything, it's all on me.” I whispered, pain stabbing through my chest like a knife. “I never take the blame. I put it all off. Nothing is my fault. The blame would always fall on someone else. But this... this is my fault.”
There was a moment of silence, I glanced at him quickly. He was rubbing a hand over his lips, like he was thinking.
“I'm not going to disagree with you.” He finally said. “You messed up, Rose, I can't tell you you didn't.”
“Good.” I thought for a second.
“But don't take all the blame. Yes, a great chunk of this is on you. But there are two people in this problem, not just you. Scorpius has faults here too. He shouldn't have given up.”
“I would have.” I said, and hearing the words made me realize.... Everything. How upset I was, how much I messed up, how badly I treated people, just everything. I could feel the tears coming again. “I don't want to be on autopilot anymore, Al.” My voice came out strangled, and cracked as sobs began to rip through my entire body. “But-but it hurts admitting, looking back on all the things I did and I-I-I....”
I broke, no words could describe it anymore. I crumpled to the floor, and sobbed, feeling my cousin's arms around me, and sobbed and sobbed.
Rose was a strong girl. She never cried, maybe a few tears but never lost it. That wasn't what Rose did.
So to see my cousin in a crumpled heap on the floor, shudders racking her chest and tears pouring down her face, it hurt. It physically hurt to see her like that.
I sunk to the floor beside her, and wrapped my arms around her. I brushed my hands through her hair, rubbed her back, held her, tried anything to get her to stop. But she wouldn't. And for fifteen minutes, I held her, scared out of my mind, because my tough as nails Rosie was broken.
Finally, and suddenly, she stopped. All of a sudden she was still.
She pulled away. “I want to go back to my room.” was all she said.
“Okay.” I nodded, and I stood, pulling her up with me.
I started to walk back the way we'd come, back to Gryffindor tower, but she shook her head.
“I want to walk alone.” She whispered, her voice dead.
“Rose-” I started, thinking there was no way in hell I'd let her do that, but she didn't let me finish.
“Please.” Rose looked at me with her sad, blue eyes. “Go, Al, please.”
There was something in the way she said it, an infinite sadness but a clear order. I sighed, and kissed her forehead, before turning away and trudging around the corner.
There was someone sitting in the corridor ahead of me, leaned up against the wall, and head in his hands. His hair was bright blonde.
“You heard, I'm guessing.” I didn't realize how angry I was, until I saw him.
He looked up, his grey eyes dead, the same way hers were. “Every word.”
“Go after her.” I ordered, I was so angry at him! How could he do this to Rose, to my family?!
He stood up, looking like it took all of his effort for that simple task. “I can't.”
“And why not?” I asked, coming closer to him.
“I just can't, I can't be around her.” He said the last word almost shuddering. “It hurts too much.”
I didn't think, I was just too mad. My fist cracked against his jaw, and he flew back into the wall.
“You fucking destroyed her! You broke her!” I bellowed at him.
He looked up, and already I could see I'd fractured his jaw. His eyes were almost haunted as he looked up at me.
“She destroyed me.”
A/N: Hi. It's been awhile. Sorry. Life had been crazy, I barely have time for my life lately, no time to write someone else's. I know it's short, but this is what you got. I have been really uninspired lately, and still don't have much, so updates as going to be long, hopefully not a month but it might come to that. My coach has decided we shouldn't have freetime so I'm having a lot of trouble finding time when I am inspired. I really need your reviews right now, guys, so please, please give me some! I'll never stop writing Unprepared, it just may take a while :) Don't give up on me. Lots of love, Alexa.
PS, sorry for the depressing chapter.