You are viewing a story from harrypotterfanfiction.com


Till Kingdom Come by Katy_Potter

View Online

Format: Novel
Chapters: 39
Word Count: 142,796
Status: COMPLETED

Rating: Mature
Warnings: Strong Language, Mild Violence, Scenes of a Mild Sexual Nature, Contains Spoilers

Genres: Drama, Humor, Romance
Characters: Ron, Hermione, Teddy, Scorpius, Albus, James (II), Lily (II), Hugo, Rose, Victoire
Pairings: Rose/Scorpius, Harry/Ginny, Ron/Hermione, Teddy/Victoire, Other Pairing

First Published: 03/19/2010
Last Chapter: 11/28/2010
Last Updated: 11/28/2010

Summary:
Sequel to "Temptation" - this is recommended before reading! Thanks to Lady Malfoy at tda for gorgeous banner!






Most of the time, it feels like a lifetime ago; like memories from someone else's life, and I can hardly believe it's only been four years...


Chapter 1: Prologue
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Well hey there! Look who's back with a sequel to Temptation!! Yes, this is Till Kingdom Come, I've decided to post it! Please give it a go, I know it's different, but this is just the prologue, it should start to come together in the following chapters! I hope you enjoy and of course, review! x
*

Four years, three weeks, and two days.

 

Sometimes it feels like yesterday; I can remember it so clearly, see everything, smell everything, and hear everything, so clearly. It’s as if I can close my eyes and I’m there.

 

Other times, it feels like a lifetime ago, like I can barely place the person I was, or the decisions I made. At times likes these, I can hardly believe it’s only been four years…

 

*

 

“Weasley,” said Healer Greene. “What made you want to become a Healer?”

 

I looked up at her and sighed, trying to ignore the stares of my nine fellow trainee Healers, including my cousin Albus.

 

 “Well,” I said, thinking. “I guess it was because I wanted to help people. I think it’s one of the best things you can do with your life, helping other people.”

 

Healer Greene grinned at me. “Good answer. Hopefully everyone else was thinking along the same lines,” she said, looking around at our intern group.

 

She looked at her watch and sighed. “Well, that’s it. Four-thirty. Your last shift as trainee Healers is over; on Monday, you do it for real. It’s been a pleasure teaching you all, don’t let me down.” She grinned at us. “Congratulations everyone; you’re officially Healers!”

 

I couldn’t help but grin back at her. I officially loved Healer Greene; she was one of my favourite people. And amazingly, she’d taken a shine to me on our first day as interns, and taken me under her wing.

 

Needless to say, I was emotional as I left St Mungo’s arm in arm with Al, ten minutes later. My three years training had been the best days of my life in so many ways, and to be honest the thought that I would be going it alone as a fully qualified Healer left me slightly terrified.

 

Albus and I strolled through the doors of the hospital, which of course resembled an old abandoned clothes store to Muggles, out onto the busy London high street. It was a scorcher; a sunny July afternoon. I couldn’t recall a summer as warm as this one since my sixth year.

 

“I can’t believe it Al,” I said excitedly. “Can you believe it? We’re Healers!”



“I know,” he agreed. “Though I’m kind of shitting it about Monday,” he admitted.

 

“Me too, but it’ll be fine.” I assured him. “Just remember everything you’ve learned, Healer Potter!”

 

He grinned at that, and I couldn’t help but join him. Saying it made it feel so much more real.

 

We made the short journey to Diagon Alley, where we could safely apparate. Albus had just made the suggestion we get a quick Butterbeer in the Three Broomsticks to celebrate, when I bumped into someone coming the opposite way.

 

“Oh, sorry!” I said, reflexively, looking up to see who I had slammed into. My mouth fell open as I recognised the person in front of me, who had just apologised at the same time as me.

 

It was Beth Hardy, my old friend from school and Al’s ex-girlfriend. I hadn’t seen her in years; the last I’d heard she was working in Portugal, and if her tan was anything to go by, that was probably right.

 

“Beth!” I exclaimed. “Hi!”

 

“Rose I can’t believe it!” she said excitedly, hugging me. “It’s been…what? Three years?”

 

“Yeah!” I said, smiling in surprise. I looked awkwardly at Albus, who appeared uncomfortable. I gave him a sharp look.

 

“Hey Beth,” He said in a friendly voice.

 

“Al,” she said with a smile. “How are you guys?”                                                           

 

“Great,” I answered. “You’re actually catching us on a special day; we qualified as Healers today, it's our first official day on Monday!”

 

Her face lit up. “Oh well that’s amazing! I always knew two would do it!”

 

“How about you?” asked Albus. “I heard you were abroad?”

 

“Yeah, Portugal,” she said. “After I started working for the Ministry, I joined the Department of International Magical Co-Operation; I was offered the chance to travel, and I couldn’t turn it down, it’s been an amazing opportunity.”

 

“Absolutely,” I agreed.

 

Al nodded. “It’s what you always wanted,” he said, quietly.

 

Beth smiled and nodded back at him. “Well I’d love to catch up with you guys, I’m only home for a month, but I could owl you?”

 

We both nodded and agreed to make plans next week. “I’m sure we have a lot to catch up on,” said Beth as she left.

 

I looked at Albus once she was out of earshot. “She’s got that right,” I said.

 

He laughed and nodded his head. “Yeah,” he seemed thoughtful. “She looked good, didn’t she?”

 

I rolled my eyes. “Yeah, you know who else looks good? This girl, you might know her, Grace, she’s called. You know, just happens to be your girlfriend.”

 

Albus laughed again. “I was just saying! I haven’t seen Beth in years! You know I love Grace!”

 

“Well good,” I said. Grace was fast becoming one of my closest friends, we’d clicked ever since Albus had met her six months ago. “Anyway, I have to take a rain check on that Butterbeer; I have plans.”

 

Al grinned cheekily. “Oh yeah?” he said. “Back to the old ball-and-chain, eh?”

 

“No actually,” I laughed. “See you at The Burrow tomorrow?” I said.

 

“Count on it,” he smiled. “We better at least have a cake.”

 

“You can say that again!” I said, grinning. I moved out of the way of the crowd and turned on the spot, disappearing with a loud crack.

 

*

 

I knocked on the white door lightly, really just to be polite; I knew I was more than welcome to let myself in.

 

The door opened and I was met by my best friend, who grinned at me.

 

“How’s England’s best Healer?” she said excitedly.


“Albus was fine when I left him,” I joked.

 

“Oh shut up!” she said, pulling me into a hug. “I’m so proud of you!”

 

“Thanks Megan,” I said, entering the house. I slipped my shoes off at the door, not wanting to ruin her cream carpet, and shrugged off my cardigan.

 

“We’re drawing pictures,” she told me, smiling in an amused looking way as we went through to her kitchen. I stopped at the doorway and arranged my face into a confused frown.

 

“Surely that’s not my god-daughter?” I said in a mock-confused tone.

 

The four-year old who sat at the breakfast-bar looked up at me and grinned her mother’s grin at me. She jumped down from the stool she was on and came running over to me, her brunette bunches swinging lightly.

 

“It is Aunt Rose! It’s me, your god-daughter Allie!” she yelled, grinning madly.

 

I bent down and looked at her closely. “No it’s not!” I said. “Allie Finnegan is a baby!”

 

“No, I’m four, Aunt Rose!” she told me. “You’re going crazy!”

 

I gasped and put my hand to my mouth. “You’re right!” I whispered. “You ARE my god-daughter!” I exclaimed. She nodded excitedly and held her arms out to me.

 

“I TOLD you!” she shouted, as I picked her up and span her around in a circle.

 

“Oh I know you did smarty-pants! I was just checking!” I laughed.

 

Megan laughed at us, flicking her wand at the kettle, which began to boil.

 

“Mummy says you’re a Wealer now!” she told me as I sat her back down on the stool.

 

“Healer you mean?” I said.

 

Megan laughed again and shook her head at me. “She’s gotten it into her head that it’s Wealer for some reason. There’s no telling her.”

 

I laughed. “Well, yes I suppose I’m a Wealer, Allie. And so is Uncle Albus.”

 

She looked up at me from her drawing, looking thoughtful. “Albus sounds just like Allie,” she told me, matter-of-factly. .

 

“Yes it does, Allie,” agreed Megan, giving her a plastic cup filled with juice and a biscuit. “But, remember that Allie is a much prettier name than Albus,”

 

“Much prettier,” I agreed, taking a seat across from her. “What are you drawing?” I asked her.

 

“It’s for you,” she said, not taking her eyes off the picture. “It’s you and Uncle Al, in your Wealer coats.”

 

“Oh I can’t wait to see it!” I said, enthusiastically, as Megan handed me my coffee and sat next to Allie.

 

“Allie,” said Megan. “You can finish your picture in a second okay? But just now Aunt Rose has something for you,”

 

I produced the big, pink card gift bag on the counter in front of her. She looked up at it and her eyes widened in excitement. “What is it?” she demanded of her Mum.

 

“Watch the tone,” Megan reprimanded, half-heartedly. “Well, remember how Rose asked you to do a big favour for her on her special day?”

 

Allie nodded excitedly. “I’m going to be a flower girl!” she reminded us.

 

“Yes you are!” I said. “And every flower girl has to have a dress…” I pulled the dress out from the bag and unwrapped it from the sheets of pink tissue paper. “…like a princess!”

 

Her face lit up as I held out of the little white flower girl dress for her. “It’s pretty,” she said, stroking it. “Mummy can I wear it now?” she asked Megan.

 

“No,” said Megan firmly. “You don’t get to wear it for another six weeks Allie, just like Aunt Rose doesn’t get to wear her wedding dress for six weeks.”

 

“Okay,” she sighed, returning to her drawing.

 

“I still can’t believe you’re getting married!” said Megan excitedly.


“Mummy,” said Allie in a questioning tone.

 

“Yes Allie?”

 

“Why did I not get to be flower girl at your wedding?” she asked.

 

I grinned at Megan.

 

“Well,” she said, “At my wedding, you were only a baby!” she told her daughter, hugging her tightly. “And Mummy and Daddy were only 19 years old,” she explained. “But you did wear a very pretty white baby dress.”

 

Allie seemed to think this through. “Okay,” she said, nodding. “That’s alright then,”

 

Megan and I both laughed, as Megan kissed her daughter on the top of the head. It was worth it, coming over to Megan and Steven’s just for the comedy value of Allie.

 

*

 

I ended up staying at Megan’s for dinner, and didn’t apparate back to my flat until around nine. Wiped from my day, I decided just to go to bed, and within seconds I was unconscious.

 

I woke as he slid into bed beside me, hours later, and wrapped his arms around my waist.

 

“Hi,” I whispered groggily.

 

“Hey,” he whispered back, kissing my forehead.

 

“How was work?” I asked him, sleepily.

 

“Not bad,” he said. “Sorry I had to work late; it was just a one-off,”

 

 “It’s okay,” I muttered. “I went to Megan and Steven’s and had dinner with them. Allie loves her little dress.”

 

He grinned. “Six weeks,”

 

“I know,” I smiled back at him. “I’m so excited.”

 

“I feel like I’m finally growing up,” he joked. “I’m marrying a Healer!”  I laughed, as he kissed me again. “I love you, Rose,” he murmured sleepily.

 

I smiled as he stroked my arm lightly, his breathing slowing as sleep came over him.

 

“I love you too, Mark.”

 

*

 

Most of the time, it feels like a lifetime ago, like I can barely place the person I was, or the decisions I made. At times likes these, I can hardly believe it’s only been four years…

 

 

*

A/N Review?

Chapter 2: Awkward Questions
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]



A/N Thanks for all the reviews for last chapter - sorry you weren't impressed with the lack of Scorp, don't worry you don't have to wait long! I want to also take a moment to thank the fab Lady Malfoy at tda for my sexy little banner - I love it!! Anywho, I hope you all enjoy, and of course please leave your response - it keeps me motivated! x
*

I never intended on getting married at the age of 21. I mean, as far as my big plan for the way my life would work out went, it wasn’t really on my agenda. If anything, I wanted to work on my career and achieve my goals before I even considered settling down; but things change.

 

For me, Mark changed everything.

 

I had just turned twenty when I met Mark. It was May, I was in my second year of training, and I had just gotten out of a relationship. A relationship with the guy who, not so long ago, I was convinced was the love of my life.

 

Mark was friends with Albus; that’s how I met him, they knew each other through James originally; Mark’s brother also played for the Canons, and Mark and Albus became good friends. Not that Albus had any intention of setting us up when he introduced us, we just both happened to be at the same party at Al’s flat, and he just randomly introduced me to Mark. None of us could have guessed the importance of that chance meeting…

 

“Rose,” said Al. “This is Mark.”

 

“Oh,” I said, slightly taken aback. “Hi,” I said, smiling at ‘Mark’ awkwardly.

 

“Hey,” he said, returning the smile.

 

“Mark’s brother plays on the team with James,” explained Albus. “So we’re both long-suffering brothers of Canon Quidditch stars”

I laughed. “I feel left out,” I joked. “I’m going to have to start a crew for long-suffering cousins of Canon Quidditch Stars,”

 

Mark laughed too. “Right, so you’re Rose, Al’s cousin?”

 

“Yeah, he never actually introduced me,” I said, rolling my eyes at Albus. “Nice to meet you,”

 

I held out my hand and he shook it warmly, smiling at me. I heard someone calling Albus from the other end of the room and he excused himself and wandered off. Leaving us alone, which was pretty awkward considering I’d only just met the guy.

 

“So,” he said, sighing. “What do you do when you’re not at Al’s parties?”

 

“I’m in Healer training with him,” I said, smiling. “So believe me as much as he may annoy you, it’s not as bad as spending six hours a day with him, Monday to Friday.”

 

He raised his eyebrows and laughed. “I’ll bet. I wouldn’t trade places with you.”

 

“What about you?” I asked, taking a sip from my drink and hoping I didn’t look like an alcoholic.

 

“I’m in Magical Law,” he said, sounding apologetic. “I know, it’s really weird…”

 

“No, no,” I argued. “My Mum’s been in Magical Law for years,” I told him. “You probably know her actually; Hermione Weasley?”

 

“Oh yeah, I know who you mean,” he said nodding. “Though we have to call her Madam Weasley, you know,”

 

I laughed. “That sounds really weird.”

 

“Well, you’re going to be Healer Weasley one day,” he joked. “Doesn’t that sound weird?”

 

“Yeah!” I said, cringing. “I think I’ll just have my patients call me Rose,”

 

“Good thinking,” he said, smiling. He seemed to think about something for a second, before making an internal decision.

 

“So,” he said. “I know I’m probably being a bit forward here, but would you like to go for a drink with me sometime?”

 

I looked down at the ground. I felt bad; this guy Mark was really nice, smart, funny, and good-looking. I looked back up at him with sorry eyes.

 

“I’m sorry, no,” I said quietly.

 

He looked disappointed, but didn’t dwell on it. “Right, no problem,” he said. “Boyfriend?” he asked.

 

I sighed awkwardly. “No,” I replied. “No boyfriend, but I’ve actually just split up from someone, and I’m just not really looking to go out with anyone just now, you know?”

 

He nodded, looking as if he understood. “I get you,” he said. “Well there was no harm in trying, eh? I’ll see you around, Rose.”

 

“Yeah, see you,” I replied as he walked away.

 

I thought that would be the last time I saw him, or at least the last time we spoke. But it wasn’t; obviously. The truth was, by the time I was ready to date, Mark was just the kind of guy I was looking for, and by some miracle I was just the kind of girl he was looking for.

 

Clichéd though it may sound, a whirlwind romance followed; six months later we were living together, and by the time I’d turned 21, he had proposed. And although in my mind I knew I was young, and I knew people would think we were crazy, I wanted to marry him.

 

So I said yes.

 

*

 

I grabbed my wand from the cluttered dressing table of my bedroom, and spun on the spot, reappearing a second later with a loud crack, in the busy kitchen of The Burrow.

 

I never got sick of coming to The Burrow. My Nana Molly hadn't slowed down in her old age; if anything ever since the death of Grandpa Arthur one year previously, she really lived life to the full. She showed just as much enthusiasm for life now as she had when I was seventeen.

 

“There she is!” exclaimed my Uncle Bill as I apparated into the kitchen.

 

“Hi,” I said, smiling at them all.

 

“Congratulations, love,” said Dad, putting an arm around me. “We’re so proud of you!”

 

Mum beamed at me from his side. “My daughter a Healer!”

 

“Don’t forget your charming godson Aunt Hermione!” joked Albus, with a mouthful of cake. I grinned at him as I noticed the half-eaten three-tiered cake, decorated with Congratulations Albus and Rose in piped icing.

 

“Where’s Mark?” asked Nana, as she busily put plates in front of everyone.

 

I took a seat next to Dominique, saying hello to her as I did so. “He’s-”

 

I was about to tell her Mark was on his way when I was interrupted by the familiar cracking sound of someone apparating, and looked up to see my fiancé in question appear in the kitchen, apologising for his lateness.

 

“Hi, everyone,” he said, taking a seat on my other side and kissing me on the cheek.

 

“Oh, Dom,” I said, conversationally. “Guess who Al and I ran into the other day?”

 

“Who?” she asked, holding her fork in the air.

 

I raised my eyebrows. “Beth Hardy,” I told her, with a significant look.

 

“Really?” she said, her eyes widening in surprise. She glanced at Albus, but didn’t say anything as Grace was here. “I thought she was in Portugal,” she said, frowning.

 

“She is,” I said. “She’s just home for a month, but she says she’d like to meet up with everyone.”

 

“Right,” said Dom, slowly.

 

“Oh Beth Hardy was a lovely girl,” said my Mum, who had been listening. “You girls should certainly meet up with her while she’s in Britain,”

 

“I don’t know Mum…” I said.

 

“Well you two and Megan were such good friends with her and Sophie once upon a time,” argued Mum. “Wouldn’t it be nice to catch up?”

 

“Wait, who’s Beth Hardy and Sophie?” asked Mark, looking confused.

 

“We were best friends with them at Hogwarts, and Albus used to go out with Beth,” Dominique told him. “But we’ve kind of lost touch with them since then”

 

“So, is that the girl who…?” said Mark, looking at Al, who nodded awkwardly.

 

“What?” asked Grace. “The girl who what?”

 

I glanced at Dom uncomfortably.

 

“She was just my girlfriend, that’s all,” Al told her. “Didn’t end well.” He added.

 

Grace raised her eyebrows but made no further comments.

 

“Actually, it’s weird you should mention that Rose,” said Albus. “I got an owl from Scorpius today – he’s coming home!”

 

Al’s words seem to hang in the air as everyone shot round to look at me. I felt my heart quicken as I glanced at Mark, who was looking down at his plate; you could have cut the awkward tension with a knife.

 

“Really?” I said, finally. “That’s interesting; I thought he was working in Wales?”

 

“He got moved back up to the Ministry, the Auror department have promoted him, from what I can gather,” he said, self-consciously. “I’m sorry, Rosie, I shouldn’t have mentioned it…”




“Don’t be daft!” I said, trying to sound impassive. “He’s your friend, it’s no big deal.”

 

“There’s no reason why it should affect you anyway,” said my Dad from the other end of the table. “Him moving up there was the best thing that ever happened to you…”

 

“Okay, can we just change the subject?” I said, feeling my cheeks go hot.

 

“Maybe we should invite him to the wedding,” said Mark, quietly. He sounded annoyed. Shit.

 

That was the thing about Mark. I loved him completely, and he was perfect in almost every way. His only weakness was my ex-boyfriend. It was understandable, even if it did annoy me; Mark spent a long time hearing about how Scorpius Malfoy had been the love of my life, and there he was, trying to compete. Whenever Scorpius’ name was brought up, I felt as though Mark didn’t trust me.

 

So the news that my ex was returning didn’t exactly fill me with joy, especially considering I was getting married in six weeks.

 

“Albus,” I said, an hour later, catching my cousin by the arm as he left the bathroom.

 

“Eh, yes Rose?” he replied, laughing.

 

“Did you tell Scorpius I’m getting married?” I whispered.

 

Albus looked uncomfortable. “Yeah.” He admitted. “I can’t lie to him Rose, he’s my best mate.”

 

“I know, it’s okay,” I told him. “I just wanted to know, is all.”

 

“Do you think it’s going to be a problem?” he asked, frowning.

 

“No,” I murmured. “Why would it be?”

 

Al shrugged. “You haven’t seen the guy in nearly two years, last time you did, he broke your heart. It’s only understandable that…”

 

“That what?” I asked him desperately. “Albus, Scorpius and I split up a long time ago, we haven’t seen each other in a very long time, and if I do see him again, I will treat him as my friend.”

 

Albus threw me a sceptical look. “Right.” He said, sarcastically. He looked at me for a long moment, as if he was trying to read my mind. 

“Rose," he said, finally. "What happened between you two back then?”

 

I sighed. “It doesn’t matter anymore Al,” I said. “It’s in the past.”

 

*

 

“I’m sorry I made that comment about Scorpius before at The Burrow,” said Mark later on when we were back at home.

 

“Oh,” I said, as I took my earrings out. “Well that’s okay, it was nothing.”

 

Mark shook his head and came over to me, wrapping his arms around my waist from behind me. “It was rude,” he argued. “The guy just annoys me, and I don’t even know him!”

 

I shrugged. “You know I think you would actually get on really well, given the chance,”

 

“Do you think I’m likely of getting the chance?” he said, carefully. I frowned.

 

“It’s just…” he continued. “Well I was being an arse before, but I would understand if you wanted to invite him, Al’s my best man and he’s Al’s best mate…”

 

I turned around and looked up at him, raising my eyebrows.

 

“Okay, let’s not talk about it anymore,” he grinned. “Did I mention how much I love you today?”

 

I smiled at him. “I love you too,” I said. “And I’m marrying you okay? You’re the one I want, Mark.” I told him, kissing him.

 

He kissed me back for a few minutes. “Okay,” he said, finally. “So I wish we could spend the day together tomorrow, but I’m finally going to pick my dress robes for the wedding. Robbie, James, and Al are trying to make a big event of it; they want to go for drinks after…”

 

“Hmm,” I said. “Would you be issuing a pre-emptive stag night?” I asked, playfully.

 

He rolled his eyes. “It’s a bit early for my stag do, though the combination of Al, my brother and his brother could end badly,” he admitted. “So what are you going to do?”

 

“I am joining Megs and Allie on a lunch date,” I told him, grinning. “Megan’s convinced that as of Monday I won’t have any time for them, and then once I’m married it’ll be even worse…” 

 

Mark laughed. “Despite the fact that she is married with a job and she manages perfectly fine to stay on the radar?”

 

“That’s exactly what I said,” I laughed. “But it’ll be fun, nonetheless.”

 

“Absolutely,” he agreed. He bent down towards me and placed a kiss on my neck. “Let’s go to bed,” he murmured.

 

I nodded, and followed him into our bedroom, wishing I could shake the thoughts of Scorpius Malfoy from my mind.

 

*

 

“And then Mark said ‘Maybe we should invite him to the wedding’ - I mean how awkward is that!” I exclaimed, casting a heating charm over my food as it had gone cold while I was telling Megan about the previous nights’ events.

 

She looked thoughtful as she cut Allie’s chicken nuggets into bite sizes for her.

“Well,” she said, carefully. “I suppose it’s understandable that Mark would feel threatened by Scorpius.”

 

I nodded. “I know that,” I admitted. “I mean he’s heard all about how Scorpius was the greatest love of my life, that can’t exactly help a guy’s confidence.”

 

“I’m guessing it was Al who put all of this in his head?”

 

I gave her a knowing look. “What do you think?” I said, sarcastically.

 

Megan laughed. “Scorpius Malfoy…” she said, thoughtfully. “There’s one I haven’t seen in a long time. So all you’re talking about is how this will affect Mark; how do you feel about him coming back?”

 

I shook my head. “I don’t know Megs,” I admitted. “I didn’t think I’d ever see him again! And now he’s coming back, just as I’m about to marry Mark!”

 

“You’re not having second thoughts about the wedding are you?” She said, sharply.

 

“No,” I replied, honestly. “I genuinely want to marry him, and it’s not like I still have feelings for Scorpius, not at all. But…”

 

“But what?” She urged.

 

I sighed. “There’s just no denying that Scorpius and I have a lot of history; he knows me better than anyone, except you - better than Mark does. I just hope it isn’t going to screw things up,”

 

“Who’s Scorpius?” asked Allie, not looking up from her colouring book.

 

“He’s an old friend of mine and Mummy’s,” I told her.

 

Megan chewed her pasta slowly, looking as though she was choosing her words carefully. “I think,” she began. “To be honest, Scorpius knows a different Rose to the one you are now. He knows Rose from high school, less mature, less responsible, and far more reckless.”

 

“You make me sound like a boring old woman now!” I laughed.

 

“No, you’re not!” she replied, laughing too. “But now you’re a Healer, and you’re more sensible, you make better decisions…you’re still the same, fun Rose, just with a different perspective on life.”

 

“I guess I have Scorpius to thank for that,” I said, meaningfully.




Megan looked sympathetic. “It’s going to be hard seeing him again, isn’t it?”

 

I shook my head. “I was friends with Scorpius Malfoy for five years Megan,” I reminded her. “I can do that again perfectly fine. Plus, I can’t ignore the fact that he is in the lives of so many people I love; he’s Al’s best friend! Plus he’s friends with Steven, and Dominique, and you! I don’t expect you all to cast him out because we have a little bit of bad history!”

 

“Okay,” she said, accepting defeat. “Allie will you please eat your lunch instead of playing with it?” she said, wearily.

 

Allie grinned at us, with a mouth covered in tomato sauce. “Can I know him?” she said, raising her eyebrows.

 

“Who?” asked Megan, frowning.

 

“Scorfias” she replied.


“Scorpius,” I corrected, without thinking.

 

Megan sighed, wiping her daughter’s face with a napkin. “That’s up to Aunt Rose, Allie.”

 

Allie looked at me expectantly. “If you want,” I murmured, looking at my plate. This conversation was beginning to make me uncomfortable.

 

I strolled out onto Diagon Alley half an hour later. Megan and Allie had apparated outside the restaurant; they were going round to Megan’s parents. I walked along aimlessly, and found myself at the window of Megan’s clothing boutique, stopping to admire the clothes in the window. I smiled at Frankie, the sales assistant who worked there on Sundays, who was waving at me.

 

I waved back, and went on, thinking over the dates for my next dress fitting. Megan had made my wedding dress; I only had one more fitting to go. The wedding was turning out to be a grand affair, much to Mark’s and my own amusement. Half the people coming didn’t even know us, but we just laughed about it; I had willingly handed over the duty of planning to my eager mother and Aunt Ginny, with Mark and I watching from a safe distance.

 

I was genuinely excited, but now my joy at the thought of being married was tainted by the feeling of unease that had been brought about by the news that Scorpius was coming back. I sighed and went on, planning to stop by at my parent’s house before I went home to read over my crucial notes before tomorrow.

 

I was about to pull out my wand to disapparate, when I saw him.

 

After all, he wasn’t hard to spot, especially considering I’d known him for ten years; but it did help that he was just ahead of me, walking the opposite direction to me. I stopped dead as I stared at him.

 

He stared back.

 

I was glued to the spot as he walked towards me, grinning in surprise. This was dangerous, far too dangerous. I felt awkward and scared and uncomfortable. I didn’t want to see Scorpius; I didn’t need this in my life.

 

“Rose!” he said, when he reached me. He smiled widely at me, appearing to take in my appearance as I did with his.

 

“Hi,” I said in a small voice.

 

“It’s great to see you,” He said in a genuine voice. He took a step closer and half-opened his arms as if to hug me, and I took an automatic step back.

 

“I…I’m with someone,” I said, awkwardly.

 

He frowned and stepped back too. “Yeah I heard, you’re getting married. You moved on fast,” he said, in a slightly accusatory tone.

 

I glared at him, and pulled out my wand. “Well,” I said, in a low voice. “What did you expect, Scorpius?”

 

And with that, I spun on the spot and disappeared into nothingness, leaving him standing there alone.

 

Yes, I had the impression this was going to get incredibly uncomfortable.

 
*

A/N Thoughts??

Chapter 3: First Days and Sleepovers
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

 A/N A new long chapter for you all! Yay! Enjoy!

*


“Morning,” Said Mark as I sleepily opened my eyes. I frowned at him, as I took in his appearance. He was standing, fully dressed, by the bed smiling at me. He began to laugh at my confused expression.

 

“It’s half seven,” he told me. “I just wanted to wish you good luck for your first day before I left.”

 

“Oh,” I mumbled, tiredly. “Right of course.” I hadn’t realised it was Monday morning; my first day as a Healer. “Thanks for waiting,” I said, leaning up to kiss him.

 “You’ll do amazing,” he said, lying down beside me and hugging me. “I know it.”

 

“What if I mess up? What if I kill someone?!” I asked him frantically, completely awake now that the panic was starting to set in.

 

Mark laughed again. “You won’t kill anyone you idiot! Plus if you have a problem…why don’t you ask Al for help?”

 

I glared at him. “I’m a better Healer than Albus.” I assured him.

 

“There’s the Rose Weasley I was looking for,” He said, kissing the top of my head. “You will be fine, I promise.”

 

I nodded, getting out of the bed. “Have fun at work,” I said, smiling.

 

He rolled his eyes. “I doubt it.” And with another flash of my favourite grin, he was gone.

 

I stretched my arms out in front of me, yawning. I picked up my wand from the dresser and walked to the kitchen, flicking my wand in the general direction of the bathroom as I passed so that the noise of our very temperamental shower filled the flat.

 

Mark and I had found the flat last year; the location was to die for: only a two minute walk from the Ministry, where Mark worked, and five minutes from St Mungo’s. The rent was pretty much a steal; however the flat itself left a little to the imagination.

 

It composed of a narrow little hallway, leading off to the small kitchen, which we had just managed to fit a table into, a “cosy” living room with two sofas, a television (it had come with the flat; we never watched it) and not much else. There was one bedroom, which was surprisingly not a bad size, with room for our double bed, my dressing table and our large wardrobe. The bathroom however was, for want of a better word, a shithole. We had barely been able to squeeze in the toilet, sink and shower, never mind a bath.

 

Despite its compact size, we had made it homely and well-decorated. In fact we had thrown some hilarious parties at the flat, most of which we honestly didn’t remember all that well.

 

I was standing at the kitchen table, about to put out some cereal when I dropped the box in fright, sending hundreds of coco pops flying around my kitchen. Albus Potter was standing in front of me.

 

“What the hell are you doing?” I demanded.

 

Al laughed. “It’s not like I just apparated right into your kitchen! Mark let me in before he left.”

 

I raised my eyebrows. “Then why didn’t he tell me you were here?”

 

He grinned cheekily at me. “I told him not to say so you’d get a fright.”

 

“Funny,” I said sarcastically. “Clean that up,” I said, pointing to the mess as I picked up the box and poured out the little cereal that remained into a bowl. “So what are you doing here?”

 

Al had already vanished the cereal on the floor with an easy flick of his wand. He walked over to my fridge and handed me the milk, and then helped himself to a glass of orange juice. “Couldn’t sleep,” he said, frantically.

 

Now that I looked at him properly, his eyes were huge with dark shadows under them as if he hadn’t slept all night.

 

“You don’t say,” I laughed, through a mouthful of cereal, while Al dribbled orange juice down himself. That was one of the many odd things about Albus and I; we didn’t bother about manners or anything.

 

“Don’t you get it Rosie?” He said, as I rolled my eyes at his use of the childlike nickname. “We are going it alone in an hour and a half! What if we kill someone?!”

 

I giggled. “I’m glad to know I’m not the only one completely losing my grip,” I told him. “I think we’ll be okay, we’ve been training for three years!”

 

He nodded unsurely, and then proceeded to putting on some toast for himself.

 

“Yeah just eat all my food and drink all my juice why don’t you!” I laughed.

 

“I intend to,” he told me with a wink, gulping down more juice.

 

“Where exactly has your riot of a brother been lately, by the way?” I asked him, frowning. I hadn’t heard from James since last week.

 

Al laughed. “Last I saw him he was going off with three girls after we went out for drinks with Mark and Robbie the other night. He owled me right enough,” He said. “Something along the lines of three girls, one James, lots of fun.” Albus laughed again.

 

“Charming,” I said, sarcastically. “Okay, I’m going for a shower, can I trust you not to consume the entire contents of my kitchen while I’m in the bathroom?”

 

He grinned, his eyes twinkling. “I can’t promise anything.”

 

*

 

The morning had been slow; so far I hadn’t had one patient. I think Healer Greene expected me to be really disappointed; she kept coming round and shrugging her shoulders at me sadly.

 

By contrast, I couldn’t have been more relieved. I had suffered from a minor nervous breakdown when I was placed on the Spell Damage floor. I knew this had been Healer Greene trying to give me a challenge, but Spell Damage was the hardest.

 

So predictably I almost stopped breathing when the doors to the ward burst open and a dozen teenagers came running in flanked by several Medi-Wizards.

 

“Healer Weasley!” said one of them, catching my arm. He pushed me towards an open cubicle and sat a young girl who looked around twelve, on the bed. I grabbed the Medi-Wizard by the arm as I took in her appearance.

 

Her face and arms were covered in angry, red burns, which were erupting in green boils.

 

“Healer Weasley!” The Medi-Wizard said again, shaking me.

 

I took a deep breath and nodded. “What happened?” I demanded.

 

“First-year Charms class,” He told me at once. “One of the pupils managed to conjure a very weak version of Fiendfyre, which burnt the rest of the class. The burns are turning poisonous and need to be treated right away.”

 

“Okay,” I said, turning to the girl as he left. “What’s your name?” I asked her kindly.

 

She was crying. “N-Nicola,” She told me, as her tears ran down her cheeks, into her burns.

 

“Okay, Nicola,” I said. “I know you’re in a lot of pain, I’m going to try to help you. My name’s Rose okay?”

 

She nodded. “It really hurts,” she cried.

 

“I know,” I said. I lifted my wand from my front pocket and ran it over her face and arms, casting a cooling charm. “Okay, is that starting to feel a bit better?” I asked her.

 

“Yes,” she said, quietly.

 

“Good,” I smiled. “Now I need to get you an antidote to the poison that the fire has conjured, give me one minute, okay?”

 

She nodded, and I turned around to look at the rest of the ward. Every Healer was with a patient covered in the same burns as Nicola. I vaguely noticed Professor Roberts, my old Charms master, pacing nervously along the ward.

 

“Alright,” called Healer Greene to us all. “I am sending round an antidote potion to the poison; administer it then work on healing the burns.”

 

As she spoke vials of a silver potion were floating towards each Healer. I caught mine and turned back to Nicola, opening the vial with shaking hands.

 

“Right Nicola, I need you to swallow this potion for me,” I said, handing it to her. “It won’t taste pleasant but it’s going to help you.”

 

She took it with equally shaking hands, while I continued casting the cooling charms over her burns. She drank the potion slowly, screwing up her face in distaste.

 

“That’s it,” I encouraged, as she finished. The burns were already starting to reduce in swelling. “Wow, Nicola, you look so much better,” I told her as she managed a small smile for me.

 

“Okay, let’s get rid of those burns so we can see you properly, yeah?”

 

I took a deep breath, but this time out of relief. Maybe I could do this.

 

And oddly enough I could. The day, and the week, passed by with a similar variety of patients and injuries, but by Wednesday I was feeling comfortable with this new responsibility, and by the time Friday came around, I was starting to love it.

 

*

 

“Thanks so much for doing this, Rose,” Megan said for the hundredth time, as she packed Allie’s overnight bag, on Friday night. “We really appreciate it.”

 

“It’s fine,” I told her. “Anyway, it’s part of the godmother job description to babysit on the parents’ wedding anniversary.”

 

Megan nodded, smiling. “I still can’t believe we got married three years ago today!” She mused. “It feels like yesterday I was having Allie and I couldn’t stand the sight of him!”

 

I laughed. “Tell me about it. I still have nightmares about you yelling at him in the Hospital Wing!”

 

Megan laughed as she folded Allie’s pyjamas.

 

I often wished that my story had been as perfect as Megan and Steven’s. Granted, I wouldn’t have wanted to fall pregnant at the age of seventeen, and they’d had a far from easy life raising Allie so young, but their love story itself? That was a fairytale.

 

 I remember when Allie was only a few months old, I thought there was still a massive spark between Megan and Stevie, but I didn’t know whether anything would happen.

 

None of us had seen it coming. They had agreed to be friends, and parents to Allie, but that was the thing about Megan and Steven; they had never been friends. I still clearly remembered the first time they ever spoke, in our first year Transfiguration class; even then they were both all shy and embarrassed. So the being friends thing didn’t really last long; having Allie made them realise that they loved each other unconditionally, and within three months they were engaged.

 

“Are you ready?” Megan asked Allie, who Steven was carrying into the lounge. “I’ve got your overnight bag packed for you.”

 

Allie smiled at me. “Aunt Rose?” She said in a voice which suggested she wanted something.

 

“Yes?” I asked her.

 

“Are we still having a sleepover with Aunt Dom?”

 

“Definitely!” I said, smiling at her.

 

“Aunt Rose,” She said again. “Can we make pancakes tonight?”

 

“Allie,” said Steven in a firm voice. “If Rose wants to make pancakes she will; wait till you’re offered it’s rude to ask.”

 

Allie rolled her eyes, looking scarily like Megan, while I laughed. Steven let her down and she ran over to hug me. I sighed; there was no denying Allie when she acted all cute.

 

“Okay,” I said. “We can make pancakes; I do love them,” I smiled.

 

Steven shook his head at me, but couldn’t help smiling adoringly at his four year-old daughter. “You shouldn’t give into her,” He told me, handing me Allie’s bag. “She uses the cuteness thing.”

 

“I can’t help it,” I laughed. “Allie you’re going to be a heartbreaker when you’re older!” I told her, holding out my hand to her.

 

“What do you mean Aunt Rose?” She asked me, grabbing my hand, her pink toy bunny, Sam, under her arm.

 

Megan laughed while Stevie looked murderous. “Nothing Allie,” He said hastily. “Rose, she’s not allowed to talk to boys until she’s fifty.”

 

“Wow, overprotective Dad in the house!” Laughed Megan, putting her arm around his waist. “Steven we need to get going,” She murmured.

 

“Right, come on Allie,” I said. “Say goodbye to your Mummy and Daddy!”

 

*

 

I stopped by my Mum and Dad’s house with Allie quickly before heading home, as my Mum had insisted I let her know how my first week had gone.

 

“Hello?” I said, letting myself in.

 

“Is this your Mummy and Daddy’s house?” Allie whispered, sounding nervous.

 

“Yeah,” I told her. “You’ve met them before,” I reminded her as I heard someone coming through to meet us. Allie held tightly onto my hand all the same. It was strange how she could be such a little drama queen around people she knew, but was terrified of strangers; even my parents who’d known her all her life.

 

“Hi Rose,” said my Mum, kissing me on the cheek unnecessarily. “Hello Allie!” She said, beaming down at her.

 

“Hi,” she said, shyly.

 

“Are you looking forward to your sleepover with Rose and Dominique?” Mum asked her in a kind voice.

 

“Yes, we’re making pancakes!” Allie told her, clearly warming to my mother.

 

“Well would you like a chocolate biscuit just now?” Mum said. What’s that about? She never gave me chocolate biscuits.

 

“Yes please!” Said Allie.

 

“So how did it go?” Asked Mum, putting my cup of tea in front of me.

 

“It actually went really well,” I told her. “My first patient on Monday morning was this girl who had burns from Fiendfyre,” I said in a low voice, not wanting to scare Allie with my talk of fire and burns. 

“And I totally freaked out at first; I thought I was going to have a panic attack! But then I just took a deep breath and realised that she needed me to look after her, and then I knew I could do it.”

 

Mum smiled at me proudly. “I always knew you would make it.” She said. “I wish I could say the same for your brother right enough…”

 

“Come on,” I laughed. “Hugo’s going to do his own thing when he leaves school, and you know he’s going to make it one day.”

 

Mum raised her eyebrows at me. Hugo wasn't exactly following the typical Weasley career path; rather than planning to go into the Ministry, like seventy percent of us had, Hugo had discovered his true calling in life at the age of seventeen; music. When I had been Hugo's age, in my final year at Hogwarts, I was studying like crazy to become a Healer; my brother on the other hand was holding concerts in his Common Room.

 

Sceptical though Mum was, nobody could deny his band was really good. They were currently making plans to begin “touring” when they left school in June– band speak for travelling around England playing in local pubs trying to get signed by some magical talent spotter. But he was following his dream so I was proud of him anyway, and I honestly did think they would get signed.

 

“Anyway,” I said. “You can’t ask for much more Mum, I became a Healer, like you always wanted. You couldn’t expect both of us to please you and Dad!”

 

Mum laughed. “Dad?” She said, sarcastically. “I haven’t seen Ronald Weasley get as bloody excited over anything as he does about that band!”

 

She gasped and clapped her hand to her mouth. “Sorry Allie, I said a bad word.” She whispered.

 

Allie frowned. “My Mummy says that word all the time, though I’m not allowed to say it. Neither is Daddy.” She told us.

 

I laughed. That sounded exactly like Megan.

 

“Well I think it’s good that Dad is so supportive,” I said. “And Uncle Harry.”

 

Mum rolled her eyes. “They’re just trying to pretend they’re young and cool instead of two middle-aged Aurors who are going grey!”

 

“I am not going grey!” Called a voice from the doorway. Dad laughed at Mum’s shocked expression and came into the kitchen, dumping his briefcase by the door.

 

“Hi Rosie,” He said. “And it’s the Al-Meister!” He said, grinning at Allie.

 

For some reason, my Dad was one of the members of my massive family that Allie remembered and loved. No matter how long it had been since she had seen him, her face always lit up when she saw him. I know it bothered Mum that Allie never remembered her and yet she seemed to know Dad.

 

“Sorry Dad but we’ll need to love you and leave you,” I said, pointing my wand at my cup and Allie’s empty glass so that they soared over to the sink and washed themselves. “We have big plans, don’t we Allie!”

 

“Aunt Rose is going to let me try on her make-up!” Allie shouted, excitedly.

 

“Allie, I said keep it a secret!” I said, laughing. “Your Mum will go nuts if she finds out I let you put on make-up!”

 

Dad scoffed. “I doubt it. Megan Bryce probably started playing with make-up when she was a week old,” He joked. “She was probably in heels by her first birthday.”

 

“My Mummy’s name is Megan Finnegan.” Allie corrected, jumping down from her stool.

 

“Yes,” said Dad nodding. “But it used to be Bryce before she married your Daddy.” He informed her.

 

“Allie knows that, don’t you?” I said, offering her my hand.

 

She nodded, grinning.

 

“And how do you know that?” I asked her.

 

“Because it’s in my name!” She said. “My full name; Allison Rose Bryce Finnegan.”

 

“You are getting smarter every day!” I said, ruffling her long brown hair. “Are you sure you’re not my little girl?”

 

Mum and Dad laughed as we waved goodbye and stepped into their fireplace, and I shouted my address. We reappeared in my living room a second later, to the sight of Mark walking into the kitchen.

 

“Oh hi!” He said, as we joined him. He kissed me on the cheek and bent down to say hello to Allie. “Don’t worry I’m not crashing,” He reassured me. “I know its girls only.”

 

I laughed. “You don’t have to leave…”

 

Mark raised his eyebrows, laughing too. “Yeah right. Its fine, I’m going to my parents for dinner so I’m guessing I’ll just crash there. I got you a pizza,” He said, pointing to the box sitting on the table.

 

I smiled widely at his kind gesture, wanting to kiss him properly, but knowing it wasn’t really appropriate in front of Allie. “Thanks,” I said.

 

“No problem,” He said, as we heard the familiar whooshing of the fireplace as someone floo’d in. “Hey Dom!” Mark called into the living room.

 

“Hi,” she said to us all, entering the kitchen. Allie ran over to her right away. It really was a shame in some ways that we no longer saw Beth and Sophie; Allie would just love all those “Aunties” to dote on her like Dominique and I did.

 

Which reminded me. Shit. Beth Hardy had owled me the other day to ask if we could all meet up for drinks tomorrow night.

 

“Did you hear from Beth?” I asked Dom, who was playing with Allie’s hair, a habit of hers.

 

Dom nodded. “Tomorrow night. You going?”

 

I looked at Mark. “Do you fancy it? Tomorrow night, that girl I told you about wants everyone to go for drinks.”

 

Mark shrugged. “Yeah I’m up for it if Al’s going. I don’t want to be the only bloke there though.”

 

“Oh I doubt it,” Dom told him. “Scorpius will probably be going too.”

 

I glanced at Mark awkwardly, but he seemed to pretend he hadn’t heard Dominique. Why did that girl always have to drop me in it at the worst time?

 

“Well I’m getting off.” He said. “What time is Stevie picking Allie up tomorrow?” He asked me.

 

“Around twelve, they said.” I answered.

 

“Okay, well I promised my Mum I’d take her for her shopping as her leg’s playing up again, so I’ll let you know when I’m going to be home.” 

“No problem,” I smiled. He walked over to me and hugged me, and whispered Miss you into my ear.






“Bye Allie, Dom.” He said. “Have fun.”

 

Dominique looked at me apologetically as he dissaparated, and I sighed.

 

“Was that Scorfias you were talking about?” Asked Allie, looking up at us expectantly.

 

“Scorpius,” I reminded her. “And yes Allie, it was.”

 

Three hours later, after Allie had exhausted herself with all the make-up and pancake making, she’d gone out like a light beside me on the sofa. Dom and I were eating a tub of ice cream from the freezer, talking in quiet tones.

 

“So…Scorpius tomorrow then?” She said, carefully.

 

I shrugged. “I don’t know if he’ll be there.”

 

Dom looked sceptical. “Beth’s contacted our entire old group from Hogwarts, he’ll definitely be going.”

 

“Okay,” I said. “Then I’ll say hi.”

 

“Have you seen him since he’s got back?” Asked Dom.

 

I looked over at Allie, to check that she was still sleeping soundly. She had a habit of repeating everything she heard at the moment.

 

“I ran into him on Diagon Alley last week,” I whispered.

 

Dominique gasped. “What happened?”

 

“Not very much,” I said, truthfully. “He basically congratulated me on my engagement by telling me I’d moved on fast.”

 

She raised her eyebrows. “Wow.” Was all she said.

 

“I know,” I said, nodding. “He’s definitely got some balls, I’ll give him that.”

 

“Arsehole,” she whispered so quietly I barely heard her. We did try not to swear in front of Allie.

 

I nodded again. “Yep, that pretty much sums it up,” I said, sighing.

 

Dominique was the only person, besides Scorpius and I, who knew exactly what happened between us back then. I don’t know why it was her I had went to, in floods of tears that awful night, instead of Megan and Albus.

 

I suppose it was really because Dominique was the only other person I was aware of that had had her heart broken by Scorpius Malfoy. 

*

A/N Like it? Love it? Hate it? Tell me! See - I'm filling in some of the gaps from those missing four years gradually...just not the Rose/Scorp stuff because I'm mean like that :p It WILL be revealed soon! I'm starting to really enjoying the sequel now, I love writing the stuff with Allie as I find her a fun character! Anywho, I hope you enjoyed! Next chappie will have them all going out for drinks, and drama is promised! And if any of you have got to the bottom of this super long and boring author's note and not given up out of sheer boredom then I owe you a hug! Review? xxx

Chapter 4: Sweet Disposition
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Wow - can you believe this is the fourth chapter of this little bad boy??! I can't! I think I'm addicted to it, honestly. I hope you enjoy, I've put in some Rose/Scorp interaction just for YOU! Title inspired by Temper Trap, and by the way I do not condone excessive drinking (though I do enjoy it!) Enjoy!

*

“So is there anything else I should know?” Asked Mark, as he pulled on his t-shirt.

 

I sighed. I had been filling him in on all the drama that had gone on within in our group at Hogwarts; conveniently leaving out a few details about Scorpius and I which he just really didn’t need to know.

 

“Al told you all about Beth, didn’t he?” I said, as I applied my make-up. We were getting ready to go to this night-out, which I couldn’t be dreading more.

 

Mark shrugged. “He just said that she was this really important girl and he messed up and he’d really regretted it for a long time; but now he has Grace so…What did he do to mess it up, anyway?”

 

I shook my head, feeling angry with my cousin at the memory. “He slept with another girl,” I told him. “Beth was gutted and that was it; they were never the same again.”

 

Mark raised his eyebrows. “Stupid guy,” He said. “Who was the girl?”

 

“This disgusting, slutty, Slytherin, horrible bitch called Zara,” I said in a disgusted voice.

 

Mark laughed. “So you didn’t like her?”

 

“That would be an understatement!” I said, laughing too. “Dom, Sophie and I confronted her in the corridor the next day and Sophie punched her. It was brilliant!”

 

Mark shook his head in amusement; “It sounds like you had a lot of fun with those girls,” He said, coming over to stand next to me at the mirror. He ruffled my hair to annoy me as I’d spent the last half an hour fixing it.

 

“We did,” I admitted, smiling at the memories. “They were like my sisters, they really were. And it’s sad that I only have Dominique and Megan now, rather than all four. We used to have such a laugh.”

 

He nodded. “Well it’s good that you’re going out with them tonight, isn’t it?”

 

I sighed. “It is yeah. But I’m just scared Mark,” I admitted. “I’m scared of all these people coming back into my life, everything is perfect just now and I don’t want it ruined.”

 

Mark frowned. “Rose, please don’t smack me for saying this – but does it have anything to do with Scorpius coming back?”

 

I looked him in the eyes. “I won’t lie to you, Scorpius meant a lot to me for a long time, but that part of my life is over now. Now I have you and we’re getting married, and that’s what I want.”

 

He smiled at me and nodded. “I’m glad,” He said, kissing me. He ran kisses along my neck, making me shiver.


“No time,” I murmured against his lips.

 

He laughed and stopped kissing me. “I know. Come on we need to get ready.”

 

That was one of the many amazing things about Mark; he made me completely weak at the knees. I’d always hated those girls who went all gooey eyed at their boyfriends, as if they were God’s gift or something. But the truth was; that was exactly how I felt about Mark. When we’d first started going out, as I got to know how great he was, I found myself unable to form coherent sentences which Mark found hilarious.

 

And he was absolutely gorgeous. When I first introduced him to Megan; she literally smacked me on the back of the head for turning him down originally. And she was right. He was tall, dark and handsome, with the perfect eyes and a perfect nose and mouth and just perfect everything. Mark Oliver was my personal miracle.

 

“Rose?” He said, frowning at me. I jumped and realised I’d been standing staring at him. “Were you doing that weird thing where you like talk to yourself in your head again?” He laughed.

 

I smiled and went to the wardrobe to get dressed. It was weird; telling him about everything that had happened when I was seventeen. Sometimes I forgot that he hadn’t been there all along. Mark had been in Ravenclaw, and two years above me at Hogwarts, so James and Fred vaguely remembered him from school but none of us had known him.

 

Megan and Stevie arrived fifteen minutes later and I made Mark go and entertain them while I finished getting ready. Steven’s parents had agreed to babysit Allie for the night so they could go; they had relocated down to England from Ireland after Allie was born, so they could be closer to the three of them.

 

This made it Megan and Steven’s second night out in a row; a real novelty. Most of the time neither of them went out, and if they were to push the boat out that far only one would come and the other would stay at home with Allie.

 

Of course, within five minutes Megan had come into the bedroom to talk to me. It had been her idea to meet before going; make an entrance as a group, rather than Mark and I awkwardly arriving with Scorpius sitting there, glaring at us.

 

“How are you feeling?” She asked me, handing me a glass of wine. “For the nerves,” she muttered.

 

I raised my eyebrows at her; any excuse to get herself hammered, as always. “I’m fine,” I assured her. “Seriously, fine. I have nothing to be nervous about; I am going to meet with old friends from school, with my fiancé, and it will be very fun.”

 

“Good. I’m glad to hear it,” She told me, clinking her glass against mine. “Now move your arse or we really are going to be late.”

 

We arrived at the bar “fashionably late” which was my excuse for very late. Mark had been getting all worked up; it was dead funny. He hated being late for anything, whereas I was late for everything. I had been assuring him for the last few weeks that I would, without fail, be late for our wedding, but for some reason he didn’t believe me.

 

I spotted Dominique first, who was sitting with Beth and Sophie, immersed in conversation; there was a random guy next to Sophie who I assumed to be her boyfriend, and beside him was Albus. Who of course was sitting next to Scorpius, who had Grace on his other side. Traitors.

 

I was surprised to see James and Fred sitting at the table too, but I supposed maybe Al had invited them along. Fred’s girlfriend Kelly was there too. This was the first time I’d seen James in over a week, and I was about to go over to him when Beth interrupted me.

 

“Rose!” She exclaimed, coming over to us. “And Megan! Oh Stevie, how are you guys?” She said, hugging us all.

 

“I’m great thanks,” I told her warmly. “This is Mark, Beth; my fiancé.”

 

She smiled broadly at Mark, and I assumed Dominique had caught her up on things to an extent. “Hi, it’s nice to meet you, I’m Beth.”

 

“Nice to meet you,” Said Mark, kissing her on the cheek.

 

“Sophie!” I called over and she got up and ran over to us. I hadn’t seen Sophie in over a year, though she was also living in London. “How are you?” I asked as she hugged me.

 

“I’m amazing, Rose!” She said. “I can’t believe how long it’s been!”

 

I introduced her to Mark too, and then we sat down beside Sophie, who introduced us to her boyfriend; Liam. Mark seemed comforted by the knowledge that there was another guy here who didn’t know anyone, and started talking to Liam.

 

I was horribly aware of Scorpius looking at me as I greeted Al and Grace, and then leaned over the table to give James a hug. I sat back down and finally looked at him.

 

I managed to smile at him. “Hi,” I said, awkwardly.

 

“Hey,” He said back, not glaring at me, but not quite smiling either.

 

“Um…this is Mark, my fiancé.” I told him, motioning to Mark, who stopped talking immediately. “And Mark, this is Scorpius, my…friend.”

 

I could feel my cheeks get steadily hotter as they sized one another up. I needed a drink.

 

“Nice to meet you, Scorpius,” Mark said finally, with a slight edge of threat to his voice. Scorpius only nodded.

 

I glanced at Megan out of the corner of my eye and she nodded.

 

“Hi Scorp!” She said, grinning at him. His face broke into a wide smile and he got up to hug her.

 

“How are you?” He asked her. “And how’s Allie?”

 

“Oh she’s fine, and so am I!" She told him. "Incidentally Allie heard Steven and I mention your name the other day; she refers to you as Scorfias and is desperate to meet you.” She said, laughing.

 

Scorpius laughed too. “You’re joking,” He said. “I’d love to come by and see her,” He said, looking from Megan to Steven.

 

“Oh my God - Allie!” Said Beth, excitedly. “How is she Megan? I cannot believe she’s four already!”

 

The group chatted about Allie for the next few minutes, while I awkwardly sat there, holding Mark’s hand under the table to reassure him I was there with him and not my ex. This was getting tiring.

 

After half an hour of loud chat with Beth and Sophie, I got up and went to sit next to James.

 

“Hi stranger!” I said. “Have you lost the ability to write these days as well as think?” I asked him.

 

James laughed. “What do you mean?”

 

“I haven’t heard from you in over a week!” I said. “You could have been dead!”

 

“Well,” He said, grinning. “There were these girls Rose; there were three of them and-”

 

“Yes I already heard more than enough about you and these infamous three girls from your brother thanks,” I told him, shaking my head.

 

“The perks of being a National Quidditch Star,” He said, winking. “So how are you, Rosie? Looking forward to becoming Mrs Oliver?”

 

I beamed at him. “I honestly can’t wait,” I said. “It can’t come quick enough!”

 

“I’m looking forward to it myself,” He admitted. “Any excuse for a good knees-up, why do you think I’m here?”

 

I laughed. “James, I have no doubt as to why you’re here,” I said, eyeing his several empty glasses.

 

After an hour, during which we all got steadily drunker, James came up with the idea to go to a local Muggle nightclub. I wasn’t surprised that it was him, who suggested it, but we were all too wasted to think straight, and so naturally we agreed.

 

The club was jumping; full of people and absolutely roasting. While the rest of them all went off to dance, Mark and I went to the bar.

 

“So how are you finding it?” I asked him, as we sat down on two stools. “I know, my old school friends are crazy!”

 

Mark laughed. “It’s a good laugh. They seem really nice.”

 

I nodded, as I ordered our drinks and paid for them with the Muggle cash Mark had on him.

 

“Let’s go dance!” He said. “It’ll be good practice for the wedding!”

 

I laughed as we got up and went to join everyone on the dance floor. “Please promise there will be nothing like this playing at our wedding reception!” I said, motioning towards the huge speakers from which some horrific rave song was playing.

 

“Don’t be such a party-pooper!” Said Dom, pulling me over to dance with her and Beth. “It’s fun!”

 

And it was. All of us girls danced away, while most of the guys went off to the bar, Mark muttering something about shots into my ear before they went. Soon Grace and Kelly had gone off to find Al and Fred, so it was just Megan, Dom, Sophie, Beth and I left dancing; the original five.

 

“Do you realise,” Shouted Sophie. “That this is the first time the five of us have been together in like three years?”

 

“It’s crazy!” Said Megan. “But we’re all so busy, I have a daughter and a clothes boutique and a house and a husband!”

 

“Notice how husband came last on that list,” I pointed out, laughing.

 

They all laughed along with me, including Megan. It was just like old times; we could have been seventeen again (except Megan was no longer heavily pregnant).

 

It was sad to think that I knew it wouldn’t last; Beth would be going back to Portugal soon and we all knew Sophie wouldn’t keep in touch. Sad, but true. Our lives had just taken different paths. 

“Rose,” Muttered Megan, grabbing my eyes. “Look,” She said, pointing over to the bar.

 

Mark was sitting with Scorpius. And worse still, they seemed to be having a laugh. What were they talking about?

 

“Oh! This is awful!” I groaned.

 

“Why?” Asked Megan, laughing. “Isn’t it good that they are getting on?”

 

“No!” I said, shaking my head. “It would be so much easier if they could just hate each other…this is going to get complicated Megan, trust me.”

 

I knew it. I had known it from the minute Al had told me Scorpius was coming back; I knew that if Mark and Scorpius got the chance to talk they would like each other, once the initial bad feelings had passed. Because they were both good guys with similar interests; in theory.

 

And of course, Mark, like everyone besides Dom, didn’t know the story behind Scorpius and me.

 

“Just let it be,” Megan advised me. “You’ll only make it worse.”

 

I nodded, eyeing them carefully. She was right; to go over there would just make it awkward and there was no point.

 

“I’m going out for some air,” I told Megan.

 

She frowned at me. “Okay, I’ll come with you.”

 

“No,” I said, shaking my head. “It’s fine you stay here. I just need some fresh air.”

 

I went out the side entry to the club, smiling at the two bouncers warmly. I walked along the street a bit and leaned against the wall, taking a deep breath. It was better out here, in the quiet street; away from the loud music and roasting spotlights. I could think here.

 

Of course I should have known I wouldn’t be left alone long. I heard someone approach behind me and I didn’t need to guess who it would be.

 

“Honestly Megan I’m-” I started to say as I turned around. It wasn’t Megan.

 

“Are you okay?” He asked me.

 

I stared at him. This was the first time I’d got a good look at Scorpius since he’d come back. His face was older, more mature looking, yet still with the same boyish handsomeness as before.

 

“I’m fine,” I said, finally. “I just wanted some air.”

 

He nodded. “Me too,” He said, leaning against the wall beside me.

 

I looked at the ground, feeling horribly uncomfortable.

 

“Mark seems like a good guy,” He said in a quiet voice. “I like him.”

 

“I knew you would,” I admitted. “There aren’t many people that don’t like him.”

 

Scorpius nodded again. “And you’re marrying him?”

 

“You know that,” I said, not looking at him. I didn’t like this at all. “Scorpius what are you doing here?” I said, looking up at him.

 

He frowned. “I’m out with my friends.”

 

I shook my head. “No here. What are you doing here Scorpius?”

 

He shrugged. “I’ve missed you. And I feel bad about the way we left things…”

 

“Well don’t.” I said, harshly. “Just don’t, okay? It is in the past, I am completely over it and so should you be. It has no part in my life now Scorpius, and I don’t want to talk about it.”

 

“Okay,” He muttered in a low voice. “I suppose I deserved that.”

 

I walked around him so I was facing the direction of the club. I looked at him for what felt like forever, and I could read every thought and emotion in his face. I suppose that was the outcome of having known him so well, for so long.

 

“Yeah you did,” I whispered.

 

“I’m sorry,” He said. “For what it’s worth, I’m sorry.”

 

I sighed. “It’s not worth anything now Scorpius. Now I know you’re back, and we have the same friends and I would never expect you to stay away, but I’m asking you for one thing.”

 

“What?”

 

“Please,” I said. “Please do not talk to me about our relationship again. Ever. I don’t want to talk about it, okay?”

 

He nodded, looking hurt. “Rose?” He asked. I raised my eyebrows in response, and he seemed to struggle for the right words. “Did…did you tell anyone? Megan…Albus…who knows?”

 

I shook my head, sighing. “The only person who knows why we broke up is Dominique.”

 

“Right,” He said, nodding. “Why didn’t you tell anyone else?”

 

“I told you Scorpius; I don’t want to talk about it.” I said, and walked away back into the club to find my fiancé.

 

*

 

I woke the next afternoon with a thumping headache, frowning at the bright sun which shone through our white curtains. I vaguely noticed Dominique beside me in the bed, rather than Mark, and I frowned harder as it started to return to me in flashes.

 

I clutched my head as I crawled out of the bed and walked into the living room, holding onto the walls for support while my head span, vaguely aware of the fact that I was still wearing my black dress from last night, with a pair of Mark’s socks on for some strange reason.

 

I groaned as I entered the lounge, at the sight that met my eyes, and suddenly I remembered it all. Mark and I had decided to have an after-party at our flat, and had invited everyone back. I vaguely recalled Scorpius saying he had to get home, and not coming along, nor had Fred and Kelly. We had lost both Beth and James about an hour after my conversation with Scorpius outside, and hadn’t seen either of them since.

 

Everyone else had come back for the party, which had lasted into the early hours of this morning. Grace had left around six, after failing to convince Albus to come with her. Sophie had left with Liam about half an hour later.

 

Mark and Albus were lying together on the sofa, with Albus only in his boxers for some bewildering reason. Perhaps my fiancé and cousin had something to tell me. Steven was laying spread out, on his front on my coffee table, which I was amazed hadn’t collapsed under his weight.

 

I frowned, wondering where Megan was. I stumbled into the bathroom to do the toilet, and then wandered into the kitchen where I found her standing at the cooker frying some eggs, looking freshly showered and dressed in a pair of my jeans and my t-shirt.

 

“Afternoon,” She said. “Hangover potion’s on the table, I thought I’d better whip some up.”

 

“Oh thank Merlin,” I murmured, picking up the small silver goblet and sipping the blue potion. I felt my body go hot then cold, and then restore to its normal temperature as my headache subsided slightly and the sickness passed.

 

“I don’t know how Muggles cope without it,” Megan said, placing a plate of fried eggs down in front of me, and taking a seat opposite with her own.

 

“You been up long?” I asked, conjuring myself a glass of water and drinking it thirstily, before tasting the eggs.

 

“An hour,” She said. “I used Tommy, I hope you don’t mind; I had to owl Seamus and Julie to see if they could keep Allie till later.” 

I nodded. “It’s fine,” I answered. “When you getting her?”

 

“I said I’d go round about three; give sleeping beauty in there a chance to join us.” She said, rolling her eyes.

 

“Yeah well at least your man wasn’t involved in the gay action, from what I can see,” I laughed.

 

Megan giggled. “It was a seriously funny night, wasn’t it?”

 

“From what I remember,” I said, yawning. “What exactly happened to Beth?”

 

She shrugged. “I have no idea,” She answered. “And James went missing too!”

 

I laughed. “That’s nothing to be worried about. James always goes missing; he’s probably just got off with some-”

 

I froze mid-sentence, my fork halfway to my mouth. Megan stared at me questioningly. “What is it?” She demanded.

 

James and Beth!” I whispered.

 

“What?” She said sharply. “No way! James and Beth? No way Rose!”

 

“She was hammered, and he’s…well James!” I said. “It makes sense!”

 

“On the contrary, it doesn’t!” She said in a quiet tone. “Can you imagine if Albus found out? James wouldn’t do that to him!”

 

“Albus has a girlfriend,” I reminded her. “And it was a long time ago!”

 

Megan seemed to consider it, as she sipped her coffee. It had to be true, it made so much sense. I couldn’t believe we hadn’t realised it last night.

 

“We have to find out,” She said, eventually.

 

“Don’t mention a thing to Albus,” I warned her. “He would go mental, even though he really shouldn’t. His brother and his ex-girlfriend…”

 

Megan nodded. “We’ll wait till you speak to James,” She agreed. “And what about you? Did you speak to you-know-who at all?”

 

“We had a brief chat,” I admitted. “I think I cleared the air.”

 

“Meaning?” She asked, frowning.

 

“I just made a few things clear, that’s all.” I told her, eating more eggs.

 

She looked ready to question me more, when we were interrupted by a yell from the living room.

 

“What the hell are you doing?” Shouted Mark. We ran in to see what was going on, and found Mark standing up, staring at the almost naked Albus who was lying, rubbing his eyes, on my sofa.

 

“Mark!” Albus moaned. “Don’t shout at me my head’s pounding!”

 

“Why are you naked?!” Mark demanded. “And why were you snuggling me?”

 

Megan and I laughed hysterically at the pair of them. “Don’t pretend, baby,” I joked, sitting down beside Al. “You know you were enjoying it just as much as he was!”

 

Mark shook his head, but couldn’t help but laugh too.

 

Meanwhile, on the table, Stevie continued to lie motionless, letting out a muffled snore every few seconds.

 

Megan sighed. “Can you believe that is the father of my child?”

 

“Can I smell eggs?” Asked Al, sniffing the air.

 

“Where the hell am I?” Came the voice of Dom from my bedroom.

 

“Wait why am I wearing Al’s shirt?” Asked Mark, frowning. “And where are my socks?”

 

I fell against the sofa, laughing so much my ribs started to hurt. It had been a seriously good night.

 

*

 

Mark and I stayed in all day, not bothering to get dressed after everyone left. We ended up phoning in Chinese food from the local Muggle take-away place down the street and I amused myself by changing the colour of Mark’s hair with my wand.

 

Later on, we were lying in bed together, and Mark was flicking through one of my magazines.

 

“Do girls really talk about everything?” He asked me in an astounded voice. “Like look at this - Fifteen Ways to Please Your Man in the Bedroom – do you actually discuss your sex lives with each other?”

 

“Yeah,” I laughed. “How do you think we get so good at it?” I joked.

 

Mark smirked. “You’re not that good, you know.”

 

I raised my eyebrows. “Don’t kid yourself. You know I’m good,” I said, trying not to laugh.

 

“Prove it,” He said, running a hand along my thigh. I was about to respond, when I heard a tapping at the window which meant only one thing.

 

“Hold that thought,” I murmured, as I got up to get the owl’s letter. I froze as I opened the window and it came soaring in.

 

“D'you know the owl?” He asked me, looking at the magazine again. “It’s not one I know.”

 

“Um, no.” I lied, taking the letter with shaking hands, and letting the owl back out the window.

 

I slit the letter open with my back to Mark. There was only one word written, in the handwriting that I would have recognised straight away if he’d bothered to change his owl since Hogwarts;

 

Sorry – that was all it said. 

I scrunched it up in my hand and threw it in the little bin by our bed, lying back down beside Mark.

 

“Who was it?” He asked me.

 

“Oh, just Healer Greene, owling to say well done for last week. She’s away on holiday tomorrow so I won’t see her this week.” This wasn’t a complete lie; she had sent me this letter, just two days earlier.

 

How exactly was that not talking about it? I could have slapped him if he had been here right now. What was the point to that letter?

 

I was, it seemed, completely and utterly screwed.
 
*

A/N Thoughts???

Chapter 5: A Family Affair
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]



A/N Wow. You guys continue to amaze me with your support to this story - I am so pleased that people are enjoying it! I am sorry however that some of you are unhappy with me for keeping you in the dark about Rose/Scorp...but a little suspense never hurt anyone! And I promise it will be revealed soon - you can hold me to that. In the meantime enjoy! 
*


“It’s beautiful,” Said Mum, tearfully. “You’re going to be gorgeous, Rose.”


“Thanks Mum,” I said, grinning. “I’m glad you like it. Now don’t tell anyone what it looks like – I haven’t told a soul anything about it; you and Megan are the only ones who have seen it!”

 

“My lips are sealed,” She assured me, smiling. “I still can’t believe my baby is getting married in five weeks!”

 

“I know,” I admitted. “But I’m happy Mum, and I want you and Dad to be happy for me too.”

 

“We are, honestly.” She said. “We love Mark and although you did move quickly, we can tell that you love each other.”

 

“We really do,” I assured Mum, grinning. “I love him so much; I can’t even explain it. He’s just so good and kind and loving.”

 

She nodded. “I know exactly how you feel.”

 

“Okay, I need to get back to work,” I admitted. “I’ll see you tomorrow night?”

 

“Yes, see you then.” She said.

 

I had taken my lunch break to come for my dress-fitting with my Mum. What with work I was so busy all the time; I’d barely been able to find the time at all. I rushed back into St Mungo’s with only five minutes to spare, rushing over the various details of my upcoming wedding.

 

I was having four bridesmaids; Megan, Dominique, Lily, and Roxanne, plus Allie as flower girl. I knew it was a lot; I hadn’t initially wanted so many, but it had been difficult to choose, coming from a family of my size.

 

I had to have Megan of course; not only because she was my best friend, but also because I had been her bridesmaid – it only seemed fair. Megan was my maid of honour, with her daughter as my flower girl. And then Dominique was my cousin, and my great friend too; Dom and I had gotten even closer since leaving school. But if I was going to have one of my female cousins surely I had to have them all; so in came Lily and Roxanne. I’d decided against Molly and Lucy as they were younger, and still at Hogwarts, meanwhile Victoire was older and I knew she wouldn’t mind.

 

Lily was in her seventh year a Hogwarts; but being a Weasley did have its benefits; she and Hugo were allowed to come back home for the day of the wedding, provided they were back for the following morning.

 

“Healer Weasley, you’re late!” Said a voice from behind me. I whipped around, praying it wouldn’t be my arsehole of a boss, Healer Nichols, who was filling in for Healer Greene.

 

“Very funny,” I said, as Al grinned at me. “I thought it was going to be Nichols! What are you doing here anyway?” I asked him. “You work on Creature-Induced Injuries!”

 

“I got transferred!” He told me, happily. “I was sick looking at those bites and stings; Spell Damage is where it’s at; that’s why you’re here!”

 

I laughed. “How did you manage to swing that?”

 

He winked at me. “When you’re as charming as me, Rose…”

 

“Sometimes it amazes me that they actually let you become a Healer, Albus,” I joked.

 

He laughed. “Jealousy is very ugly Rose…we can’t all be as intelligent as me!”

 

“Whatever,” I laughed. “Come on, we have work to do!”

 

We were swamped all day, with a huge variety of patients. I found it surprisingly easy working with Albus; much like it had been when we were training. There was no real competition between us; we just joked around.

 

He was able to ask for help in the areas he was weaker in, and vice versa. I started to realise that myself and Albus Potter made quite the team.

 

*

 

I decided to stop by James’ house on my way home to question him about Saturday night. I had been going over the possibility of him and Beth in my head all day, and I had to know.

 

“Hello?” I called, as I opened the unlocked door. “James?”

 

“Hey Rose!” He said, smiling. He was wearing pyjamas, for some reason.

 

“Hi,” I laughed, going over to hug him. “Why are you in your jammies?” I asked him.

 

He shrugged. “I was tired. So what brings you here? I’d have thought you’d be getting back to the fiancé.”

 

“I am,” I nodded. “But I just wanted to call in to see you. I wanted to ask you something…”

 

“Shoot,” He said, walking into his kitchen and opening a bag of crisps.

 

“Well,” I said, putting my bag down onto the table. “You know the other night? Well I know you went off and I just assumed you’d pulled but…well you didn’t go off with Beth did you?”

 

James put the bag of crisps down, silently. “Shit,” He murmured. “How did you know?”

 

“It’s true?!” I demanded, in shock.

 

“Well yeah!” He said, sounding apologetic. “I feel terrible Rose. I honestly don’t know what I was thinking; I was just really drunk, you know?”

 

I sighed. “James…how could you do that to Al?”

 

He shook his head. “He can never find out Rose,” He told me, seriously.

 

“I think you should tell him,” I admitted.

 

“What?” He demanded. “Are you mad?”

 “Think about it James!” I cried, in frustration. “You’re a famous Quidditch player – it’s only a matter of time before this gets out, and you know it will! Don’t you think Albus would prefer to hear it from you than read it in the Prophet?” 


“I can’t tell him, Rose.” He said quietly. “I can’t do it to him, he’d be gutted.”

 

“He might not take it as badly as you think,” I offered. “I mean he has Grace now, he hasn’t been with Beth for over four years!”

 

James shook his head in disagreement. “No,” He said. “Beth wasn’t just some girlfriend to Al; you know that as well as I do, Rose. He was totally in love with her, and between you and me, I reckon he still is.”

 

“No way,” I argued. “Al’s been with Grace for almost six months. He loves her!”

 

“I’m sure he does. But Beth was someone really special to him, Rose; I don’t think he’s ever gotten over her.”

 

I sighed, sitting down next to him and eating one of his crisps. “Why do you bloody Potters have to be so complicated?”

 

“Look,” He said. “I know I fucked up; but please don’t tell my brother what I did. He means too much to me Rose, and I feel terrible, but it’s not going to help anyone by me telling him. I’ll speak to the team and we can make sure the press keep it covered up. Just let me sort it Rose.”

 

“Okay,” I sighed. “But don’t say I didn’t warn you.”

 

He smiled, ruffling my hair. “I do appreciate it though,” He said. “You’re too good to us.”

 

“Don’t I know it?” I laughed. “So what are plans for the rest of the night?”

 

He opened his mouth to answer, when he was interrupted by the oh-so familiar cracking sound of someone apparating.

 

In general, to hear this noise while sitting in your own home was slight cause for concern. It was simply bad manners to apparate directly into someone’s home; even my Mum or Dad for example, would always apparate to my door and knock. The only person who did it in my flat was Mark. It was just polite to knock first.

 

This explained the confused look on James’ face as my fiancé appeared in his kitchen, looking completely flustered.

 

“Mark?” I said in a raised voice. “What are you doing here? What is it?”

 

Mark was breathing heavily, his chest rapidly rising up and down. “Rose…” He gasped. “Rose,”

 

“What’s wrong?” I cried, running to him. “Mark, tell me!”

 

He looked up at me slowly, shaking his head. And in the second that I looked at him, I knew the sadness in his eyes was for me, not himself.

 

“Your Dad…” He whispered. “Rose, you Dad’s had a heart attack.”

 

For what could have been hours, though in reality it was only seconds, everything stood still and all there was in the flat was silence. I felt as though my heart was slowly ripping in two as I tried to process what Mark had told me. My Dad? My Dad?

 

“Is…is he at St Mungo’s?” I whispered finally.

 

“Yes,” Said Mark at once. “Your Mum sent Harry to tell you but obviously you weren’t at home. I said I’d find you right away. That’s all I know.”

 

“Let’s go,” I muttered, taking out my wand.

 

“I’ll go change,” Said James, who had gone very white. “I’ll be right behind you.”

 

I nodded, took Mark’s hand and turned on the spot, focusing completely on my place of work. We appeared in the busy reception of St Mungo’s a split-second later, and I rushed over towards the desk, pushing past people in my blind panic, trailing Mark by the hand.

 

“I’m looking for my Dad,” I said in a shaky voice. “He had a heart attack,”

 

“What’s his name?” Asked the woman behind the desk.

 

“Ron Weasley,” I answered at once. Everyone around me within earshot whipped around to stare at me in shock, but I ignored them. “Where is he?” I shrieked at the shocked-looking receptionist.

 

“They’ve got him on the Emergency ward,” She said right away.

 

“Come on,” I said, grabbing Mark’s arm.

 

As we ran into the ward, I could have wept at the sight that met my eyes. My mother was sitting in a white plastic chair in the waiting room, with Harry and Ginny on either side of her.

 

“Mum!” I cried, running to her. She got up right away and pulled me into a tight embrace, her shoulders shaking. “Is he okay?” I demanded. “Mum!”

 

“We don’t know,” She cried, tears running down her cheeks. “We only just got him here fifteen minutes ago and – oh!”

 

I whipped around to see Albus walking towards us, still wearing his Healer robes. I had completely forgotten that Al was on a late shift.

 

“Albus!” Cried Mum.

 

“I came down as soon as I heard,” He muttered. “Let me go and find out what’s going on.”




“I’ll come with you!” I said, right away.

 

“No,” Al said, harshly. “Rose, no. They won’t let you in and you’re not on shift anyway.”

 

“Rose, your Mum needs you here,” Said Mark quietly.

 

I nodded, crying. “You come straight back when you know what’s happening.” I ordered him. “You hear me?”

 

“I will,” He promised me.

 

I turned back to my Mum, who was sobbing. “Come on Mum, sit down,” I said, leading her to the seats. “Tell me exactly what happened.”

 

“We were having dinner,” She said, looking at Harry and Ginny. “At our house, and Ron was fine; he was fine. And then he started to complain about a pain in his chest,” She said, her voice breaking. “And then he collapsed!”

 

I nodded, trying to keep breathing steadily, while Mark held my hand.

 

“We brought him here right away,” Said Harry, taking over from my Mum. “But they haven’t told us anything, they just rushed him in there…what will they be doing Rose?”

 

I sighed. “The main concern is to ensure he doesn’t have another heart attack,” I told him. “And there are a number of things they need to avoid at all costs; blood clot, inflammation and…failure.”

 

“So what are they doing now?” Mum whispered shakily.

 

I shook my head. “I’m not sure, it depends how critical he is…they’re probably giving him potions to try and reduce the swelling around the tissue and monitor his heart rate. I – I don’t know I’m sorry!” I said, crumbling under the pressure as desperate sobs took over me.

 

“It’s okay,” Said Mark, pulling me into a hug. I buried my face against his chest, as the tears poured down my face. I felt as though everything had turned wrong so quickly, and I would give anything for my Dad to be okay.

 

“Has anyone told Hugo?” I said, shakily.

 

“No, I don’t want to worry him until we know your Dad’s okay.” Said Mum, tearfully. “I just don’t understand this…I mean a heart attack? He’s only 46, and he’s fit and healthy; he’s not overweight and he gets plenty of exercise.”

 

“It doesn’t matter Mum,” I told her. “Men are classed as at risk over the age of 45,”

 

“Al?” Said Harry, as his son rejoined us.

 

Albus looked directly at me as he spoke. “Healer Johnson is on his wait out to speak to you himself, but I think Ron should be okay.”

 

We all sigh in relief. “Any after-effects?” I asked him.


Albus looked uncomfortable. “Look, here’s Healer Johnson coming, talk to him.”

 

Healer Johnson was one of the most senior Healers at St Mungo’s and specialised in non-magic related maladies; if there was anyone I’d have chosen to look after my Dad, it was him.

 

“Healer Johnson,” I said right away, as Mum and I rushed towards him.

 

“Mrs Weasley, Healer Weasley,” He said, nodding to both of us. “I think Mr Weasley will recover fully; the attack itself wasn’t too serious, it was the complications which have arisen as a result of his heart attack.”

 

“What do you mean complications?” Asked Mum.

 

He sighed. “Your husband suffered from something called congestive heart failure, Mrs Weasley; this is an after-effect of heart attacks which can sometimes occur. We are using a spell to try to restore his heart to normal function, without causing too much trauma.”

 

Mum gasped, and I put my arm around her.

 

“I know it’s a lot to take in,” He said, apologetically. “Can you think of any stress your husband has been under lately that might have brought this on?”

 

Mum shook her head. “He’s just been really busy with work, but I didn’t think it was that bad.”

 

“We’ve been working a lot of long hours to try to solve this case…” Said Uncle Harry. “We’re pretty snowed under at the moment.”

 

Healer Johnson nodded. “It can be a culmination of many things. The important thing is that he’s okay.”

 

“So what does this mean for him now?” Asked Ginny. “How will this affect his life?”

 

“He just needs to slow down,” He told us. “A heart attack is the body’s way of telling us it’s under too much pressure. He will need to be on bed rest for a week or so, and cut his work load a bit.”

 

Mum nodded. “He does have quite a hectic life, so we can work on that.”

 

“Okay,” Said Johnson. “Now there’s one other thing,” He said, looking at me. “You’ll be aware Rose, that congestive heart failure and a heart attack itself can point towards an early onset of diabetes…we will have to do tests but it is something that you might want to prepare yourselves for.” 

I nodded. “Can we see him?”

 

“Yes,” He said. “But I would only recommend two of you go in for now, he’s slowly regaining consciousness, but the potions we have given him have made him drowsy; we don’t want to make him agitated.”

 

Mum and I went in ourselves to see him on Healer Johnson’s advice. A nurse was administering his potion dosage when we went into his room, and smiled at us warmly before leaving.

 

You wouldn’t have known he was sick. He was lying there, looking perfectly comfortable, if a little flushed. Mum sat on one side, taking his hand and I sat on the other. His eyes flickered open and he managed one of his trademark smiles for us.

 

“My girls,” He muttered in a croaky voice. “Sorry for scaring you.”

 

“Don’t talk, Ron, just rest.” Said Mum quietly, stroking his cheek.

 

“You’re always telling me to shut up,” He croaked. “Even when I have a bloody heart attack.”

 

Mum and I both laughed shakily, out of relief more than anything else. 

“You’re going to have to slow down, Dad,” I said. “You’re putting yourself under too much stress.”

 

He smiled again. “Healer’s orders?”

 

“Yes,” I laughed. “I mean it. You really scared us Dad.”

 

He nodded slowly. “Stress, eh?” He chuckled. “It’s a surprise I’m having a heart attack now and not when we were fighting Riddle, eh Hermione?”

 

*

 

Dad got home the next day, and I decided to move back home for a week with them just to make sure they were coping. With Dad on bed-rest, Mum was going to need help with the housework and everything, plus she was more comfortable with me there, being a Healer; even if it just meant me administering his potions. Healer Johnson had insisted that I take a week’s holiday from the hospital, and had cleared it with my ward supervisor.

 

Dad had a very mild form of diabetes, the tests had revealed. It wouldn’t affect his diet hugely; he would just have to be more watchful of his sugar-intake, which would prove to be a challenge for him.

 

We had downplayed Dad’s heart attack to Grandma Molly as much as possible; she had totally freaked out when Harry had told her what had happened, still fragile after Grandpa Arthur’s death the year before. We figured Dad was going to be okay, so we shouldn’t have her worrying; she was pushing eighty, after all.

 

Mark had been amazing. He came round every day to see me, Mum, and Dad and was always out getting shopping and stuff for my Mum. The situation with Dad had made me appreciate him so much.

 

By the time Wednesday came around, Mum convinced me to go for lunch with Mark, insisting that she could cope for the day. I finally relented, eager at the chance to spend some quality time with him.

 

We were in a quiet little Muggle restaurant for lunch; I had never had to put up with the same amount of crazy public attention my parents had received, but it was still unpleasant when people stared at us because my surname happened to be Weasley.

 

“So are you okay?” Mark asked me, while I ate my lasagne.

 

“I’m fine,” I assured him. “It’s been really tough, but Dad’s going to be okay and that’s all that matters.”

 

“Good,” He said. “So I was thinking about the wedding…”

 

“We are not postponing it, so don’t even suggest it.” I said, firmly. “It’s four and a half weeks away, Dad will be fine by then. I should know,” I said, smiling.

 

“I wasn’t going to suggest that,” He said. “But it’s good to know. Actually, I was thinking maybe…well I think we should invite Scorpius.”

 

I choked on my lasagne. Coughing and spluttering, I gulped down some water, staring at him.

 

Scorpius?” I gasped. “Why in the hell would we invite Scorpius?”  

 

Mark shrugged. “He’s a part of your life Rose, whether you like it or not. And he is Al’s best friend, and you keep saying you want to forget everything and be friends with him…well maybe you should think about it.”

 

I chewed my food, thinking. This was one of Mark’s more admirable sides coming out; I knew he didn’t want Scorpius at the wedding, but he was making it clear that he didn’t mind if I wanted to invite him. Unless it was some sort of a test…

 

“I’ll think about it,” I said finally. “But right now to be honest, Scorpius Malfoy is the last thing on my mind.”

 

Mark grinned. “I won’t pretend that doesn’t make me happy. But I do like him, I have to admit it. As much as it bugs me – he’s a nice guy.”

 

I nodded. “Yeah he is.”

 

Was Scorpius Malfoy about to be added to our list of wedding guests?

*

A/N Lots to take in, oui? The wedding is fast approaching, Beth and James, Ron's heart attack and now Scorpy potentially receiving an invite! Few! For the record, I am aware that there is no Emergency Ward in St Mungo's as far as we know, but I was improvising :) Also my knowledge about heart attacks is limited so sorry if I got stuff wrong! Anyways I hope you liked it - review?? xxx

Chapter 6: The Way We Were
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Chapter six??? Holy moly! I will have finished this before we know it! Just kidding, I have exams coming up so enjoy the fast updates while they last!
*

My Dad was mending quickly; a week after his heart attack he was back on his feet, and another week later he was back at work. The Healers, including myself, were all shocked; he shouldn’t have progressed so quickly, but he just kept telling me he was determined to get better. I discouraged him from going back to work so soon, but he was having none of it so eventually I gave in, insisting he worked short hours to begin with and warning my Uncle Harry not to let him get under too much stress.

 

After moving back to my flat after his first week of recovery, I had been dropping in every night, however this week would be problematic; I was starting night shift. I wasn’t sure how I would fair, staying up all night. I had tried to go back to sleep this morning after Mark had left for work, but it wasn’t happening for me; even with the blinds shut, the sun still shone through.

 

Eventually I had given up and stopped round at my Mum and Dad’s; Dad was at work of course, but Mum was there; as she had progressed to the higher ranks of the Ministry in her career she had found the luxury of working from home.

 

“Hi,” I called as I let myself into my family home. I went into her study, where I knew she would be, and found her sitting with a pile of books.

 

“Oh, hello sweetheart,” She said. “Fancy a coffee? I need to get away from this lot for a while,” She said, gesturing to the huge pile texts and documents.

 

“So how is Dad coping with work?” I asked her, while she made the coffee.

 

She sighed. “Rose you know how he is; he’s too stubborn to listen to either of us. All we can do is trust him to not over-do it.”

 

I nodded. “I suppose so. But I’m going to keep stopping by to measure his pulse and blood pressure.”

 

“Shouldn’t you be sleeping anyway?” She said, setting my cup of coffee down in front of me. “I thought you were starting night shift tonight.”

 

“I am,” I groaned. “I can’t sleep during the day! I’ll just take a pick-me-up potion when the tiredness sets in.”

 

“I was looking at old photographs yesterday,” She told me, grinning. “I had been getting all nostalgic, thinking about you and Mark getting married; you and Hugo are so cute in some of the old photos!”

 

I laughed. “Come on, then, let’s see them,”

 

The photos provided Mum and I with a few laughs, and a few tears. We looked at photographs spanning from my Mum and Dad’s childhood, through their years as a young couple, Hugo and I as babies, toddlers and then going off to Hogwarts, right up to the day I got my acceptance into Healer training.

 

We laughed at the photos of her, Dad, and Uncle Harry when they were thirteen and at Hogwarts, photos of Albus, Dom and I on our first day at the school. Mum welled up when we came across photos of the first generation of Weasleys, with Uncle Fred beaming and laughing with the rest of the family. We both cried looking at photos of Grandpa Arthur, happy as ever.

 

I smiled at a photo of Megan and I; it had been taken at one of Harry and Ginny’s annual New Year’s parties, when we were in sixth year; Megan was just noticeably a few months pregnant. I laughed at the next; Dom, Megan, Beth, Sophie and myself in the run-up to the end of sixth year, sitting in the Gryffindor Common Room, Megan now clearly heavily pregnant; it must have been taken just a few days before Allie was born. The next was of a tiny baby Allie, who was being held by a smiling Megan, with Stevie, Albus and myself; Allie with her parents and godparents.

 

“Doesn’t it make you miss being so young?” Said Mum, smiling.

 

“Yeah,” I admitted, shocked to feel tears pricking at my eyes again. I pulled forward the next photo from the pile, and felt a little jolt in my stomach.

 

It was a photo of Scorpius and I. We must have only been eighteen, a couple of months out of school. We were standing in the new flat that Mum, Dad and Scorpius’ parents had bought us between them. It was taken in the little hallway; Scorpius was wearing old overalls, which I vaguely remembered making fun of, and I was dressed in one of his old shirts and denim shorts. I rolled my eyes at the bunches I’d pulled my hair into; both of us were completely covered in white paint; we had just finished painting the hall when Mum had popped over to see how we were getting on. Scorpius had his arm around me, and I was hugging him tightly. We grinned at the camera, and every few seconds Scorpius would lean down to kiss me, while I dabbed white paint on his cheek playfully.

 

“That must feel like a lifetime ago,” Said Mum, quietly.

 

I nodded. “It does,” I agreed. “It certainly doesn’t feel like only three years ago,” I said, sighing.

 

Mum smiled. “These things never do,” She told me. “You know, I remember the day you brought that boy home to us…”

 

I laughed. “So do I,” I had never been so nervous about anything in my life…

 

It was the summer holidays between our sixth and seventh year at Hogwarts. I had just gotten my Apparition licence the day before, and the first place I’d apparated was to Megan’s parents’ house to visit her and the baby. Megan had been stressed out of her mind; I remember Allie hadn’t stopped crying the entire time I was there and her and Steven, who was staying there temporarily, looked absolutely shattered. It had been a very short visit. Scorpius and I had met in Diagon Alley the following afternoon, and we apparated to my house, with the full intention of finally telling my Dad about our relationship.

 

“Okay, so just remember, no matter what my Dad says I love you okay?” I whispered nervously.

 

Scorpius nodded, though he had turned ghostly pale. “Your Dad’s going to murder me Rose,” He whispered, shaking his head. “I’m a dead man.”

 

I shook my head. “Come on, it’s not like we’re engaged or pregnant or anything! We’re just telling him we’re going out! It’ll be fine.”

 

Of course I was kidding myself on, for his benefit. I was only grateful that my Mum already knew at least.

 

It felt strange, knocking on my own door, but I didn’t want to just walk in holding hands with the boy who I’d been warned to stay away from for the past six years. My Mum answered the door, and she gave us a knowing look. We came in and she led us into the garden, where Dad was sitting with Harry and Ginny; great we had an audience.

 

“It’s Rose,” Said Mum, carefully. “And she’s brought a guest.”

 

Dad frowned as he took in the appearance of Scorpius and I, standing there like two people about to confess to a multiple homicide.

 

“Scorpius?” Said Harry. “What are you doing here, are you with Al?”

 

“Eh, no,” He said, awkwardly.

 

“He’s with me,” I said, looking only at my Dad. “Well we’re…we are sort of going out, Dad,” I said, quietly. “And I wanted to tell you in person, and formally introduce you to Scorpius before we went back to Hogwarts.”

 

I stood there, watching as my Dad’s face progressed from its normal pale peach, to pink, to red, to scarlet, to purple. Knowing him as well as I did, I said nothing and waited until it started to progress back down the colour chart.

 

“Dad?” I whispered, when he was looking a more normal shade. I glanced at the other members of my family; Mum was watching Dad apprehensively, Ginny had raised her eyebrows, and Harry was unreadable. Scorpius looked terrified of even breathing.

 

Dad took a deep breath and then looked at me. “How long has this been going on?”

 

“Well, eh, we’ve sort of been together on and off for the past year, give or take.” I answered quietly.

 

Dad nodded. “And do your parents know about this?” He said, looking at Scorpius.

 

“Y-yes, sir.” He said, in a scared voice. “We told them at King’s Cross when we got off the train.”

 

“And how did they take it?”

 

“Well they were surprised,” Scorpius said, seeming to relax a bit now that he was sure my Dad wasn’t going to strange him. “But they realise that I love Rose and she makes me happy so…”

 

Dad nodded again, looking stern. “I don’t like it.” He said. “I really don’t like it, I won’t pretend I’m happy about this. But if Draco Malfoy can accept it then surely I can,” He said.

 

“You’re serious?” I asked. “You’re not going mental?”

 

Dad started to laugh. “Rose I thought you were meant to be the smart one? Your Mum told me weeks ago! I’ve just been waiting for you to tell me yourself!”

 

“What?!” I demanded, glaring at Mum. “Mum!”

 

She laughed too. “Oh Rose I couldn’t lie to him! Anyway isn’t it easier this way? I took the brunt of his anger instead of you two.”

 

Harry and Ginny were laughing as well now; even Scorpius was smirking.

 

“I have been stressing over this for months!” I told them, frowning.

 

“Well not without reason,” Said Dad, sounding serious again. “I mean it,” He said, looking at Scorpius. “If you break her heart I will be after you, Scorpius.”

 

He nodded. “I give you my word, Mr Weasley, I won’t.” He said, politely.

 

“Who’d have thought it?” Laughed Uncle Harry. “These sure are changed days; Ron Weasley’s daughter going out with Draco Malfoy’s son…”

 

I shook my head at the memory, smiling at Mum. “Those were the days, eh?” I laughed.

 

“Anyway,” Said Mum. “I need to get back to work, do you want to stay here and keep looking at these?” She asked me.

 

“No,” I said, getting up too. “I will take a couple though, to put up in the flat. I put a few photos of me and Hugo, me and Albus, and me and the girls into my bag, pointedly leaving the photo of Scorpius and I behind to be put away with the rest of them in my parents’ drawers.

 

“Are you going to try and get a nap?” She asked me, sending mine and her empty cups soaring towards the sink.

 

“There’s no point, I won’t be able to. It’s because I slept last night, hopefully I will sleep tomorrow when I come in.”

 

She nodded. “Well I hope it goes okay,” She said, hugging me. “And I’ll see you through the week?”

 

I smiled, nodding. “If I don’t see you through the week, I’ll see you through the window!” I joked.

 

Mum rolled her eyes at me. “Rose, darling, you really missed your calling in life as a comedian!” She said, sarcastically.

 

*

 

I went shopping in Diagon Alley, which was a foolish mistake as always seeing as I ended up spending an outrageous amount of money on the most pointless things I didn’t need; clothes for me, clothes for Mark, plants for the flat, new perfume, new jewellery, new shoes…pointless things.

 

I stopped by Megan’s boutique, aware that she was working today. The successful clothes boutique was one of the many success stories in my best friend’s life. When she had started working in her Aunt’s shop after she had Allie, she’d started sketching designs, and before anyone knew it she was opening her own shop and designing all of these beautiful one-off pieces which were selling like crazy. She didn’t have to go in and work but she chose to.

 

“Hi,” I said to the girl standing behind the till. “Is Megan around?”

 

“She’s in the office, go on in,” She said, smiling. One of Megan’s rules about the shop was that bitchy girls weren’t allowed to work there.

 

Megan was sitting sketching at her desk, and Allie was zooming around on a toy broomstick when I went into the spacious, open-plan office.

 

“Aunt Rose!” Said Allie, jumping off it and running over to hug me.

 

“Hi baby girl!” I smiled, hugging her back.

 

“I can see you’re doing well with the sleeping before tonight thing!” Said Megan, smirking at me.

 

I rolled my eyes. “It’s impossible to sleep when it’s this sunny outside and there’s so much to do!” I told her. “Instead I’ve come out and spent an insane amount of money,” I admitted, holding up the many bags.

 

Megan laughs. “You know I condone excessive shopping!”

 

“Allie I bought you a present,” I told her, handing her the bag. I had bought her a bright pink tutu, seeing as she was so upset she couldn’t wear her flower girl dress until the wedding. She screamed in delight and pulled it on over her little dungarees.

 

“That’ll be her amused for hours,” Said Megan, while I sat down across from her. Allie was once again flying about the office on her toy broomstick. 


“I have news,” I told her.

 

She pushed the drawing aside, dropped her pencil and looked at me intently. “Go,” She said, at once.

 

I grinned. “Well, we were right,” I whispered. “James slept with Beth!”

 

Her mouth fell open in shock and her eyes widened. “You’re joking!”

 

I shook my head. “I know, it’s ridiculous. But I’ve promised him I won’t say anything, so you can’t either. He can’t bear for Al to find out, he says he'd be crushed."

 

“You know, we’ve been going on about how James could do that,” Said Megan. “But what about Beth?” She said. “I mean who would have thought she could act like such an S-L-U-T!” She said, spelling it so Allie wouldn't repeat it.

 

I shrugged. “I guess she’s not the same person we used to know at Hogwarts,” I said. “I mean we’ve changed too, haven’t we?”

 

“I suppose,” She nodded.

 

“Oh, speaking of which, look at this!” I said, pulling out the photos of us.

 

“Oh my god!” Laughed Megan. “Oh wow – Allie come and look at this, it’s when you were still in Mummy’s tummy!”

 

I laughed as Allie climbed onto her Mum’s knee to look at them. Megan smiled down at the photos, with the same nostalgic look on her face I probably had.

 

“Is that me when I was a baby?” Asked Allie, pointing at the one of her, Megan, Stevie, Al and me.

 

“Yes, that was just after we first met you!” Megan told her. “Merlin, that feels like a lifetime ago doesn't it?” She said, looking at me.

 

I nodded. It sure did.
 

*

 

I was getting ready for work at tea-time, while Mark made himself some dinner. It was rubbish having to leave at this time, but I’d known it when I chose to be a Healer; at least Al would be there too.

 

“Mark,” I said, rushing into the kitchen, half-dressed. “Will you sign your name at the bottom of this?” I asked him, handing him the cream and gold parchment.

 

I watched as he read it while I pulled the zip up on my skirt and fastened my blouse, stuffing my Healer robes into my bag.

 

“Are you sure about this?” He asked me. “Because you know it’s totally your decision?”

 

I nodded. “It’s fine, you know I think it’s the right thing to do.” I said, taking it back from him. “Surely it won’t do any harm?”

 

“I think you’re right,” He said, kissing me. “Rose you better go!” He told me, glancing at the clock.

 

“I know,” I said. “Will you send this with Tommy?” I asked.

 

He nodded and I glanced down at the invitation once more. I’d written neatly, the same words everyone else had received:

To Scorpius Hyperion Malfoy,

 

You are cordially invited to the union of


 

Mark Oliver

 

To

 

Rose Weasley

 

On the Fourteenth of October, 2026

 

At

 

The Burrow, Ottery St. Catchpole, Devon

 
RVSP





“Okay,” I said, handing it to Mark. “Send it before I change my mind.”

 

The night shift dragged in. The hospital was very quiet, and Albus and I had taken to quizzing each other on antidotes in our boredom; we literally had one patient between us, and she was sleeping.

 

I had taken my break and went down to the canteen to get a coffee and some food. I bought it and made my way back towards my ward. As I walked past the empty reception, smiling at the witch behind the desk, I stopped dead at the sight in front of me.

 

Beth Hardy was standing there, tears streaming down her face. I frowned at her, not really registering what I was seeing for a moment.

 

“Beth,” I said finally. “What’s the matter?”

 

She closed her eyes for a second, shaking her head. “Rose…” She whispered. “I didn’t know where else to come.”

 

“What is it?” I asked her, taking a step closer. “I thought you were meant to be going back to Portugal tomorrow?”

 

“I was,” She said. “Rose do you remember how we all went out two weeks ago?”

 

I nodded, raising my eyebrows. “The night you shagged James?” I asked her. “Yeah I recall it Beth – what’s this all about?”

 

She looked at the ground, and after she had told me what she was so upset about, I realised it was because she couldn’t look me in the eye.

 

“I’m pregnant.” She whispered.

 

I did not see that one coming. 

*


A/N Review??? Let me tell you officially - the reason Scorp and Rose broke up will be revealed in the NEXT chapter! Not long now! xxx

Chapter 7: Bitter Reactions
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]



A/N I really need to stop sitting up till stupid o'clock writing this story, but I can't stop! The inspiration just keeps coming! WARNING - there is some mild violence and strong language throughout this chapter. Enjoy!
*


“Thanks for doing this with me, Rose,” Beth whispered, while I knocked firmly on the door.

 

“It’s okay,” I lied. “Let’s just get it over with, okay?”

 

I was literally exhausted; when my night shift eventually finished, I did not crawl home to my warm bed where my wonderful fiancé lay waiting for me. No; instead I found myself once again outside the flat of James Sirius Potter at seven in the morning, accompanied by my former friend who wouldn’t stop crying.

 

After my shocked silence finally subsided (which had lasted roughly twenty minutes) I clicked into action and took Beth up to do a proper test with her, check her over and find out her due date. She was only two weeks pregnant, obviously, and her due date was around the end of June next year. That was about all I could say to her. Then, when she’d stopped crying, she said she had to go and tell James, but she couldn’t go alone, so of course she asked me to come when I got off work. And, being the complete mug that I am, I agreed.

 

“For fuck’s sake!” I heard him yell as I knocked for the fourth time. “Rose!” He shouted, opening the door. He was dressed only in his boxers, and looked half-asleep. I stepped aside so he could see Beth too, and his eyes widened. “What’s going on?”

 

“James I need to talk to you,” Said Beth. “It’s important.”

 

James frowned, but let us in all the same. I went in and sat down in his living room, hoping to stay as out of the conversation as possible; this had nothing to do with me, and what’s more I really couldn’t bear to look at either of the pair of them right now.

 

“What’s going on Beth?” He asked, running his hands through his hair. “I have practice in an hour and I’m knackered.”

Just say it, I thought wildly, willing her to just come out with it. There really wasn’t any point putting it off now.

 

“I’m pregnant, James,” She said, in a strong voice. “And you’re the father.”

 

I couldn’t help myself from looking over at James from my corner in the lounge. I watched my cousin, as the shock set in on his handsome features, and in that moment, although I knew he’d been an idiot, I felt for him so much. I couldn’t help it; I’d always had that protective instinct over James and Albus, even though I was the youngest of the three of us.

 

James was frozen in shock for several minutes, moving only to cover his face with his hands in despair. He dragged his hands through his messy hair once more, shaking his head in disbelief, while Beth stood there, watching him with tears in her eyes.

 

Finally he looked at her, and I saw the regret in his eyes, echoed in her own. But it was too late for regrets.

 

“Fuck,” He whispered finally. “What the fuck are we going to do?”

 

Beth shook her head, and then burst into tears. James looked uncomfortable, but went over and hugged her all the same because he was a decent enough person not to leave her standing there crying.

 

“It’s okay,” He said. “We’ll work it out,”

 

“How?” Cried Beth, pushing him away.

 

“I don’t know!” He shouted. “I don’t fucking know Beth! Shit!”

 

I looked at the ground, feeling horribly awkward. I shouldn’t be here, and I instantly hated Beth for bringing me.

 

“I’m going to leave you two to talk,” I said, getting up.

 

“Rose,” James whispered, desperately. I was shocked to see his eyes brimming with tears, his shoulders shaking.

 

Acting on instinct, I went over to him and wrapped my arms around my cousin. He fell against me, completely falling apart over the mistake he couldn’t take back.

 

“You will figure this out, James,” I whispered, stroking his hair. “I know you will. You can do this.”

 

He shook his head in my arms. “What have I done? What will my Mum and Dad say? What about Al? Oh my God, Al…”

 

“He’ll never forgive us,” Cried Beth. “He’s never going to speak to me again, oh fuck!” She said, covering her face with her hands.

 

I couldn’t help myself. “Beth, you’ve seen Albus twice in the last three years!” I said, coldly. “James is Al’s brother. That’s a little more important!”

 

She nodded, wiping away her tears. “I know, I know. I’m sorry I just don’t know what to do…”

 

I sighed. This had nothing to do with me, and I had to leave. “I’m going,” I told James. I pulled him up so he was standing up straight. “You need to talk to Albus, today, as soon as possible. He has to know about this. Owl me if you need anything.” I said. I kissed his cheek, managed a parting glance at Beth, and then apparated away from the disaster my cousin and his brother’s ex girlfriend had created.

 

I was unbelievably grateful that it was Mark’s day off as I slid into bed beside him, lifting his arm so I could lie on his bare chest. It was only when he spoke that I realised he was awake.

 

“What kept you?” He asked me, sleepily.

 

“I was at James’,” I whispered. “Mark, Beth and James slept together that night we went out, and now Beth is pregnant.”

 

Mark sat up in shock. “Pregnant? Are you serious?”

 

I nodded. “She came to me last night. And that’s where I was just now; with her telling him. James is a mess – they both are. Mark, Al’s going to be crushed.”

 

“Shit,” Mark said, frowning. “What about Beth, is she keeping it?”

 

I sighed. “I don’t think Beth can think straight right now. She needs to talk to James, and they need to tell Albus.”

 

“How do you think Al will take it?” He asked me, stroking my hair.

 

“You know as well as I do,” I said, shaking my head. “We all love Grace, but nobody’s ever been able to take Beth’s place for Al. She was the love of his life and now…I dread to think.”

 

“Poor Al,” He said. “Poor James…poor Beth!”

 

“I know,” I said. “But I feel for Al the most…I mean how stupid could they get?” I sighed, lying back down on his chest. “This is just perfect; a Potter brawl four weeks before our wedding.”

 

Mark laughed, in spite of the situation. “Two of the groomsmen, beating each other up at the altar.”

 

“Oh don’t,” I groaned. “I swear to God, I wouldn’t put it past them. Ginny and Harry will go mental…and wait till the Prophet gets wind of this; James’ career will be a train wreck.”

 

“He’s going to have to do a lot of thinking,” Said Mark, shaking his head.

 

I nodded. “You can say that again…”

 

*

 

I managed to sleep for a couple of hours, but my head was hurting with all the information. I couldn’t stop thinking about Al, and James, and Beth. Had they told him yet? How would he take it? What would the Potters say? What would Grace say? It was only when Mark brought me in a letter that he said had come with Harry and Ginny’s owl, that I realised he hadn’t done it yet. 


Rose, He had written. I’m at Mum and Dad’s (without Beth – she’s gone home to tell her parents) and Al is here and I can’t do it. Can you come over? I know it’s not your problem, and you probably want nothing to do with it, but I need the moral support, same as Beth did, and you’re the only one who knows. Please Rose, I need you.

James.

PS, bring Mark if you want, I realise you’ve probably already told him.

I sighed and handed the letter to Mark. He read it quickly and then looked at me. “Are we going?” He asked. 


“Yeah, we’re going,” I said. I honestly wished I didn’t care so much about those two bloody boys. 


I quickly got dressed and Mark and I apparated together to the Potters’ family home. I felt nervous as we approached the door, as if it was me that was about to betray Albus. 


Harry greeted us in surprise, and let us in after I told him I needed to chat to Al and James. The house was as grand as ever; kept in beautiful condition by its proud owners. Albus still lived her with his parents, though he and Grace had been discussing getting a place together, we all knew it wouldn’t happen for a good while; Al was too much of a Mummy’s boy. 


“Hi,” I said, as I joined Ginny, Al and James in the lounge. I was shocked to find Scorpius also sitting there, beside Al. “Hi Scorpius,” I said, awkwardly. 


“Hey Rose!” Said Al, completely unaware of the awkward tension. “What’s going on? Scorp and I were just heading out,” 


“Why aren’t you sleeping?” I asked him, frowning. “Aren’t you exhausted?” 


Albus laughed. “No way. Pick-me-up potion, Rose – it’s the only way!” 


“Oh right,” I murmured, looking pointedly at James, who looked as though he may be sick.

“Eh, Al,” He said awkwardly. “I asked Rose to come because I need to tell you something and I’m kind of shitting myself,” He stuttered, his breathing fast. 


Albus frowned. “What is it, Jay?” He asked. “What’s up?” 


James took a deep breath, looking at the floor. “Okay I’m just going to say it, mate. Shit – Al I slept with Beth two weeks ago when we all went out, and I just found out she’s pregnant with my kid.” 


He said it quickly, all in one breath. Al’s reaction was almost identical to his father’s; both Potters stood there, frozen in shock, with the exact same frowns creasing their faces.

Predictably, Ginny acted the only way anyone would expect her to. 


What?” She yelled. “James tell me you are joking! Beth Hardy – pregnant? This has got to be a joke James; there is no way you could be so-”


“Ginny!” Said Uncle Harry sharply, and she fell silent. James was staring at his brother, who was yet to move. I glanced at Scorpius, and his eyes met mine nervously. I looked away from him to Mark, who looked as uncomfortable as I felt. 


When Al finally spoke, it was with more hatred and cold fury than I’d ever heard from him before in my life. 


“You arsehole,” He whispered, furiously. He was shaking with rage. “You fucking arsehole.”


“Albus-” Harry said, but Al held up a hand to silence his father.
 

“Of all the stupid, irresponsible, fucked up things you have done James,” He whispered. “This really tops them.” 


James shook his head desperately. “Al, I’m-”


But whatever exactly James was, we never got to hear as that was when Albus went for him. He jumped up and crossed the living room at lightning speed, tackling his brother in the same breath. 


Ginny and I screamed at them to stop while Harry, Scorpius and Mark ran over to pull them apart. But Al was out for blood; I watched in shock as he elbowed Scorpius who was trying to pull him off his brother, in the stomach. Al continued punching James in the face. He shoved Mark away, who fell into Harry, the pair of them smashed into the glass coffee table. 


“Boys!” Ginny yelled. “Stop it now!” 


“Albus - enough!” Harry yelled angrily, going to pull his son away again, but now James was fighting back, and Harry was shoved aside by the two boys. I genuinely couldn’t believe my eyes. 


“ENOUGH!” I shouted, throwing myself between my brawling cousins. I shoved my hands against their chests, glaring at the pair of them. “That is ENOUGH! Who is this helping?” I yelled, realising there were tears in my eyes. 


Albus shook his head in despair; I wasn’t the only one in tears. He shoved away from both of us, storming out of the house. At the same time, Ginny went marching out the living room, sobbing. Harry shook his head at James, before running out after his wife. I noticed Al in the garden, from the window, and looked from Scorpius to Mark. 


James was on his knees, crying, covered in blood. “Mark,” I whispered. “Sort James out, please?” 


Mark nodded, wiping his own blood from his burst lip. I looked then to Scorpius, who nodded at me. We left the living room at a quick pace, and I led us out through the patio doors to Albus, who was standing against a tree, his fists balled up. 


“Albus,” I whispered, carefully. I put my hand on his shoulder, comforted by the fact that he didn’t throw it off. Scorpius went to his other side, and Al looked up at us with wet eyes and a messed up face; James had gotten in a few good swipes before I’d stepped in. He grabbed onto us, with one hand each, falling down onto his knees. We went down to the grass with him, and he lay his head against my knees, sobbing much like his brother had a few hours previously. Scorpius patted his back, giving me a meaningful look. 


“I know you’re hurt,” I told him. “I know. But James is your brother Al.” 


Scorpius nodded. “Nothing is worth you two fighting, mate. Nothing. You know that as well as we do.” 


Al sniffed, but otherwise didn’t comment. 


“I know this must be hard for you; I know how much you care about Beth…” I whispered. “But Albus…”


“I hate him.” He said in a low voice. “I physically hate him. How could he do this to me? I could kill him.”


“That’s enough,” I said, fiercely. “Albus Severus Potter you do not mean that. My Dad nearly died last week Al! Do you understand that? Doesn’t that show you that you need to value the people you love? You can’t fight with your brother!” I said, as more tears ran down my cheeks. “What would Grandpa Arthur say if he could have seen that?” 


“She’s right, Al,” Said Scorpius, softly. “James means too much to you,” 


Albus looked up at me, his shoulders shaking. Finally, he nodded. “I need to go and see her,” He said, getting up and pulling out his wand. “I’ll be okay, I swear,” He promised us, apparating without another word. 


I looked at Scorpius, feeling more tired now than I had this morning. He too, looked shattered; he slumped against the tree and sighed. 


“What a fucking mess,” He said, shaking his head. 


“I know,” I nodded. I noticed him wincing slightly as he moved, and his hand move to his abdomen. “Are you okay?” I asked, frowning. 


“I’m fine,” He muttered, nodding. 


“No you’re not,” I said. “Come here,” I told him. I pulled his hands away from his stomach and pulled his shirt up to reveal his torso. I pressed my hands to his stomach and he winced in pain; the skin there was red and starting to bruise. “Al has some punch, eh?” 


He laughed, his face screwing up in pain again. “You can say that again,” He admitted. 


I smiled as I pulled out my wand and waved it slowly over his bruises, muttering the healing spells under my breath. “That feel better?” I asked him. 


“Yeah, thanks,” He said. He smiled slightly as I pulled his shirt back down. “So what is it with you breaking up fights?” He laughed. 


“What do you mean?” I frowned. 


“Sixth year,” He reminded me. “You stepped in when me and that Carson fucker were fighting at your birthday party.” 


I laughed, shaking my head. “Yeah, well, that was a long time ago, wasn’t it?” I said, about to get up. He caught my arm and locked eyes with me, hypnotising me in a way that only he ever could, and I felt myself getting lost in his piercing grey eyes. 


“Rose,” He whispered. “You have no idea how much I wish I could change it.” He told me. “Every night, in my sleep, I go back to that night and I say everything differently, I don’t do it…”


Scorpius,” I whispered, shaking my head. But he had made his decision as he leaned towards me and gently pressed his lips to mine for the first time in three and a half years…


I let myself into the flat, shaking my wet hair. The downpour had been a constant fixture of the past nine days, and it was getting more than a bit annoying. It was December, 2023, two weeks to Christmas, I was nineteen, and Scorpius and I had been living together for a year and a half.

We were completely up to our eyeballs in debt, seriously struggling to pay our rent, but wonderfully happy at the same time. I found him in the kitchen, standing at the cooker over a pot of dodgy-smelling pasta. We were just a pair of teenagers, madly in love, finding our independence.

“Hi,” I murmured, sliding my hands around his waist and standing behind him. “I missed you,” I told him, kissing his neck.

I knew right away that there was something wrong, when he pushed me away and turned round to face me.

“Scorpius,” I said, frowning. “What’s wrong?”

He sighed. “Rose…I’ve been offered a promotion.”

My eyes widened in surprise and I grinned at him. “That’s amazing!”

For some reason, he didn’t look the same. I didn’t understand, but he didn’t leave me hanging long; he never did.

“It’s in Cardiff, Rose.” He said.

“Cardiff, Wales?” I asked, in shock.

He nodded. “Wales. I’m moving to Wales.”

I let out a deep breath, raising my eyebrows thoughtfully. “Okay,” I said, thinking. “Right. This is a lot to process, Scorp.”

He nodded. “I know it is,” He said, apologetically.

“I’ll need to sort some stuff out,” I said. “I don’t know what the deal is with magical medicine in Wales, but they must have a hospital there, right? I’ll have to talk to Mum and Dad though, and we need to sort something out about the flat, I don’t know how much notice we have to give…when do we have to be there?” I asked him.

Scorpius frowned at me, his eyes unreadable. He shook his head, once, and then sighed. “Rose,” He muttered. “I’m moving to Wales. Alone.”

Those words went through me like a knife. For the rest of my life, I would feel the scar they left on me.

“Alone?” I choked out. “What do you mean, alone? Are you finishing with me?”

Scorpius ran his hands through his blonde hair, sighing again. “This is a brilliant opportunity for me, Rose.”

“I know that,” I said angrily. “So what’s the problem exactly?”

“I can’t do this with you,” He said. “I can’t move to Wales with you and set up house and fucking get married!”

“Where the hell did this come from?” I shouted, in a shaky voice.

“I am nineteen years old, Rose!” He yelled. “Nineteen! And I feel as though I’ve had my whole life planned out for me and I can’t cope with it.”

“You can’t cope with it?” I repeated, in a disbelieving tone. “Whose idea was it to get a bloody flat together Scorpius? And since when were we getting married? I’m only nineteen too you know!”

“Exactly,” He said, flatly. “We are far too young to be settling down like this.”

“So what’s the alternative?” I asked, fearing his answer.

He shrugged. “We take some time apart and I go to Wales. We don’t need to settle down just now…we’re so young.”

I took a shaky breath, my eyes watering. “So you want to split up? You don’t want to be with me?”

“I love you,” He said. And I believed him. “But I’m doing this for us, because I think it’s for the best.” He took a deep breath, then looked me in the eyes. “Rose, I’m moving to Wales and I don’t want you to come with me.”

“Scorpius,” I cried. “Don’t do this, I love you.”

“I’m trapped Rose,” He whispered, shaking his head. “I don’t want this just now; family meals at The Burrow, Quidditch with your Dad and Uncle Harry, weekend trips with Megan and Stevie…it’s too much.”

I clasped my hand to my mouth in shock. “This can’t be happening,” I whispered. “We’re supposed to be together, we’re soul mates.”

Scorpius shook his head. “I need to be on my own Rose. I can’t do this anymore. I won’t.”

He sighed once more, kissed me on the top of the head, and then apparated away, leaving me standing there.

What happened in the weeks that followed was pretty much a blur to me; I’d sort of lost it. Mum brought me home to stay with her, Dad, and Hugo, and at some point he’d picked up his stuff from the flat. Dad and Uncle Harry got all of my stuff, and took care of the remaining rent before signing it back over to the owner for me, while I sat in my childhood bedroom, steadily falling into depression.

I never really knew why Scorpius did what he did. I was certain of only a few things; he’d made the decision long before I’d got home that night, and he had gone to Cardiff. It took me a long time to get over it, and I genuinely could not have done it without my family and friends; mainly Dom.

 I had gone to her that night, devastated, and told her everything. And she was the only one I ever told; everyone else just knew that we’d split up, and he’s moved to Wales. Dominique was the only one who knew he’d cast me aside and told me he no longer wanted me after years together.

And then eventually things went back to normal. I focused on work, and one day I met Mark. And after a long period of me learning how to trust someone again, we fell in love. I had Mark to thank for bringing me back to normality, and showing me how to be happy again…


I shoved Scorpius away from me, and slapped him across the face. I jumped to my feet and so did he. 


“Who the hell do you think you are?” I said, angrily. “I am engaged Scorpius. I am getting married in four weeks!” 


“I’m sorry,” He said, shaking his head. “Rose I just wish I could go back in time and change it!” 


“Well you can’t!” I snapped. 


I threw him one more cold look, before storming away from him to find my fiancé, ignoring the tears that pricked at my eyes for the hundredth time that day. 


And people wondered why I had commitment issues; well I guess I had Scorpius to thank for that. 


*


A/N So the plot thickens! Sorry guys I know this was a bit of a filler, but there was some really important stuff in there, and it's the most dramatic chapter of Till Kingdom Come so far! Let me know what you all think - I LOVE YOU! x

Chapter 8: Broken Stones
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Okay I know I said the last chap was a filler, but this really is, however it is completely necessary to portray the reactions to all the events of previous chapters. WARNING - there are some scenes of a sensitive nature towards the end, regarding Beth's pregnancy! Enjoy!
*

“I don’t like it,” Said Dom, childishly. 


“I don’t care, Dominique!” I said, rolling my eyes at her. “These are the dresses you are all wearing, and that’s it.” 


“What exactly is wrong with it?” Demanded Megan, in a hurt voice. “You know, I worked really hard on these designs, Dom, and I think I’ve done pretty well considering what I had to work with!”


“What do you mean what you had to work with?” Asked Roxanne, laughing. 


“Well, think about it,” Said Megan. “Rose’s got five bridesmaids, including myself, ranging from the ages of four to twenty-two! And I have to take into account all the different skin tones, and hair colours…it wasn’t easy you know!” 


“I like the dresses, Mummy!” Said Allie, stroking the skirt of Dom’s pewter, silk dress. “They’re pretty!” 


“Thank you sweetheart,” Said Megan. “At least someone likes them!” 


I threw Dom a harsh look and she sighed. “I’m sorry Megan!” She said. “They’re gorgeous, okay? If I could take a little off the length…” 


“Dom!” I cried, in frustration. “You’re wearing the bloody dress and that’s it!” 


Megan and I were standing in the storeroom of Megan’s shop, on a Saturday afternoon, with Dom, Roxy, Allie, and Lily, who had been given permission to leave Hogwarts for a few hours for the final bridesmaids dress fitting. The dresses were a credit to Megan; pewter silk, and knee-length, they had a detailed and sophisticated neckline, as opposed to the common strapless style. The bottom of the dress kicked out in subtle waves, shimmering beautifully. They were gorgeous. 


“Can’t we just see your dress, Rose?” Asked Lily, desperately. “Seeing as we’re all here?” 


“No,” I said firmly. “The only people who have seen the dress are Megan, my Mum, and me, and that is how it will remain for another two weeks. 


They all huffed and sighed, but gave up knowing they weren’t going to break me. I’d kept it quiet this long; I wasn’t going to give the game away now. 


“By the way,” Said Lily, twisting her long, red hair round into a would-be chignon; we still hadn’t decided on hairstyles. “Do any of you know what is going on with my brothers?” 


Dom, Megan, Roxanne and I all exchanged awkward glances. Harry and Ginny clearly hadn’t kept their youngest child in the loop. 


“Oh come on,” She said, laughing. “I come home this afternoon, to the startling news that James has moved back in, but Al for some reason has moved out? What is that all about?” 


“Maybe James just wanted to come home,” Said Dominique, shrugging. “Meanwhile Al wanted his own space.” 


“Right,” Lily scoffed. “So those two things just so happen to occur at the same time? I don’t think so. What has he done?” She demanded, looking scarily like Aunt Ginny. “I know James must have screwed up again – what’s happened?” 


We all stayed quiet and she frowned, looking angry. “Rose I know Al is staying with you!” She said. “Come on tell me! Which of my brothers have fucked up?”


Allie gasped, clasping her little hand to her mouth. “Mummy!” She whispered. “Lily said a bad word!”

“Thank you Lily!” Said Megan, sarcastically. 


“Sorry, Allie,” Said Lily, hastily. “I didn’t mean it.” She looked from Allie to me, and I shrunk under her Ginny/Nana Molly inspired glare. 


“You need to talk to them about it,” I said honestly. “I’m not getting involved; Albus asked if he could stay with Mark and I for a few days, so I said okay.” 


She shook her head. “This family tells me nothing,” She muttered darkly. 


“Trust me,” Said Roxy, shaking her head. “You don’t want to know, Lil.” 


Roxanne and Lily were closer to each other than they were to Dom or I; simply because they were closer in age; Roxanne had left school the previous year, she was nineteen and Lily had just turned eighteen. 


“Look, can we discuss this later?” Said Megan. “I need to get you out of these dresses before they crease.” 


“And we need to plan the hen night,” Said Dominique, excitedly. “Sorry Lils,” She said, smiling sadly at our younger cousin. “I don’t think Flitwick will let you cut for a hen night!” 


They all changed into their normal clothes, and Roxy and Lily went off the spend the afternoon together before Lily had to get back to school and Stevie came to pick up Allie and take her to the park, leaving Dominique, Megan, and I at the shop. 


“Well that was awkward eh?” Asked Megan, as she hung the dresses back up in their garment bags. 


“State the obvious why don’t you!” Laughed Dom. “I wouldn’t worry, Lily will get it out of Uncle Harry before she leaves again; he can’t say no to her.” 


“Have there been any updates?” Asked Megan. 


I shook my head. It had stayed pretty much the same as it had started where my cousins were concerned; awful. James had, in an attempt to reconcile with his brother, announced that he was moving back home for a while, to which Al had responded by moving out. I only put him up because he had nowhere else to go, Grace had finished with him last week. It was so sad, and I felt for Albus so much; she had been so shocked at his reaction to everything, and had declared that he must still be in love with Beth. Grace wasn’t interested in someone who was in love with someone else; it was a shame for Albus, but you couldn’t really blame Grace. 


“What about Beth?” Asked Dom. “I mean I haven’t spoken to her – have either of you?” 


“She owled me last night,” Megan informed us. “Asking me for advice,” 


“What kind of advice?” I said right away. 


Megan shrugged. “The brunt of it was something along the lines of how I made the decision to keep Allie, how I coped, what I thought she should do and so on. Well it makes sense; I am the only one who she knows that’s been in a mildly similar situation.” 


“Not all that similar,” Said Dom, coldly. “You didn’t do anything wrong, Megs, you just had a moment of stupidity, which has thankfully turned into the best thing in your life. Beth on the other hand…”


“That’s really not fair,” Said Megan. “I know Beth shouldn’t have done what she did, but she was single and so was James…I know there’s baggage there, but they were drunk and they made a mistake. You can’t stand there and say you’ve never made a mistake, Dom?” 


Dominique raised her eyebrows. “Not that big a mistake,” She argued.


“The name Carson comes to mind,” Said Megan, smirking.


“Okay,” I said, hastily. “Let’s not go dragging up the past girls! What did you tell her Megan?” 


“I told her she’s the only one who can make this decision,” She said, simply. “I understand how frightened and confused she is, but she needs to think about what she wants.” 


“Fair enough,” I said. “That is pretty good advice.” 


Dom nodded. “I wonder what she’ll do,” 


I shrugged. “Your guess is as good as mine…listen,” I said. “I need to tell you both something, but I need you to keep it to yourselves, okay? It literally can’t leave this room.” 


They both nodded, looking intrigued. I sighed. “I have to un-invite Scorpius from the wedding,” I told them.


“What?” Demanded Megan. “Why?” 


“Because he kissed me,” I said, quietly. I waited for their reaction, and Megan was predictably the first to speak.


“Are you shitting me?” She whispered. I shook my head. “Oh my God!” She said. 


“Wait, what exactly happened?” Said Dom, rationally. 


“It was after Albus and James fought,” I told them. “We were in the garden, and I’d just healed him, and he said something about regretting it every night, and then he kissed me.” 


“What did you do?” Said Megan at once.

I laughed. “I pushed him off me, slapped him, and asked him who the hell he though he was.” 


“Good response,” Smiled Dom. “So why exactly did he think he could kiss you?” 


“I don’t know,” I admitted. “But I can’t have him at my wedding; not now. I thought we could be friends, but clearly not.” 


“So what are you going to tell him?” Asked Megan, frowning.


I shrugged. “I’m just going to go over there and tell him the truth. It’s not appropriate. Christ knows what I’m going to tell Mark though,” I said, sighing. “I hate lying to him, but the truth would crush him.”


“Don’t tell him,” Agreed Dom. “It will only make things worse.” 


Megan looked doubtful, and I raised my eyebrows at her. “Well Rose, don’t hate me for saying this, but…are you sure Mark’s the one you want?” 


“Megan,” I said, frowning at her. “I am marrying him. I love him – just the same as you love Stevie. Surely you don’t think I could hurt him like that?” 


Megan shrugged. “Rose, none of that was yes, Mark is the one I want was it?” 


I shook my head at her. “I want to spend the rest of my life with Mark, and I intend to. I would have thought you would know me well enough to know that I am done wasting my time on Scorpius Malfoy.” 


“I’m sorry,” She said at once. “I am Rose. I’m just looking out for you.” 


“I know,” I admitted. “It’s fine, just please don’t worry about me.” 


“We always will,” Said Dom. “No matter how happy you are.” 


Megan nodded, smiling at me. “That boy really screwed you up, didn’t he Rose?” She laughed. 


“Yes,” I admitted, also laughing. “Thankfully, there was someone called Mark Oliver waiting to fix me back up again.”

*

When I got home, Albus was sitting on my couch, staring off into space looking thoroughly depressed. Mark was nowhere to be seen, I noted, and he had probably gone out to escape Al’s wallowing. 


“That’s it,” I said, pulling him up by the arm. “Move it.” 


“Rose,” He yelped. “What are you doing?” 


I said nothing, instead tightening my grip on him, holding my wand aloft, and turning on the spot with the familiar loud crack. We reappeared a second later, on the doorstep to his parents’ house, and I knocked on the door. 


“No, Rose, I’m not doing this.” He argued, pulling away from me. 


“Yes you are,” I told him. “Plus you haven’t got your wand on you so you can’t apparate unless I am with you,” I said, as Ginny Potter came to the door. 


“Albus!” She cried, pulling him into a hug. “Oh my poor baby, are you alright?” 


“I’m fine, Mum,” He muttered. “Just being held against my will,” He said, as I shoved him through the door.


“Where’s James, Aunt Ginny?” I asked her, nodding at her to show I was going to try to sort this out. 


“He’s in his room,” She said. “But Rose I really don’t think this is a good time…”


“It’s the only time,” I told her. 


“No,” Said Ginny, grabbing my arm. “It really isn’t. Look, Beth is up there…they’re talking about what they’re going to do.” 


Al’s face crumpled into a glare as he pulled away and stalked off upstairs. 


“Oh bollocks!” I muttered, running up after him. 


“I did tell you,” Said Ginny, shaking her head and following me, clearly afraid of another brawl between her sons. 


The three of us stormed into James’ bedroom, where we found James sitting at his desk and Beth standing by the window, looking forlorn. 


“Al,” Said James, getting up at the sight of his brother. 


“What’s this?” Asked Al, bitterly. “Round two?” 


He glared at Beth. “Back for more, Beth? Or maybe you wanted a crack on my Dad, work your way around all the Potters?” 


“That’s enough, Albus,” Said Ginny sternly. She pulled out her wand and conjured a vast Shield Charm between Al and James, preventing them from stepping any nearer to each other. “Now you two are either going to talk, or you both leave. I will not have my sons fighting, not again.” 


Albus sighed, staring at his brother. “We’ll talk,” He said finally. “Rose will be here Mum, she won’t let us fight.” He added. 


Ginny nodded, her eyes flickering between the two. Finally she nodded. “I’ll leave you to it,” She said. She looked at me. “If you need anything,” She murmured, and I nodded.


“So,” Said Al, when she had left. “Have you two been picking out names?” 


“Stop it Albus,” Said Beth. “Do you think this is what either of us wanted?” 


Albus shook his head, smirking. “I doubt it. To be honest I’m surprised; I never had you down as the unprotected sex type, Beth. Especially not with him,” He said, nodding at his brother. “Who knows what you could have caught.” 


“Albus Severus!” I said firmly. “Stop it right now. Now I know you are angry, but you have to work this out; look at what you’re doing to your Mum and Dad. And me, I’m getting married in two weeks and I will not have a wedding where you two aren’t speaking.” 


“Well you’ve clearly chosen your side, Rose,” Said James, quietly. “So what do you have to worry about?”


“Don’t put that on me!” I said, angrily. “James I am not taking sides – you two are like my brothers, don’t make me choose!” 


Albus sighed. “Look,” He said, looking from Beth to James. “Are you keeping it?” 


Beth shrugged, looking down at her stomach. “We don’t know.” 


I raised my eyebrows, but didn’t comment. 


Al shook his head. “How could you?” He whispered. “Either of you? I love you both, and you’ve betrayed me.” He said. He looked at Beth. “And I know we weren’t going out or anything but…you know how I feel about you. And I know I hurt you when we were going out, but my brother?” 


“And as for you,” He said, looking to James. “How many nights did I spend moping over her, telling you how much I wanted her, and you do this?” 


They both said nothing, looking ashamed. 


Al sighed. “Have it, don’t have it, it’s nothing to do with me. But I promise you, that baby will be nothing to me, and neither will either of you.” 


He gave them one last look of disdain, before leaving the bedroom. And although I’d said I wasn’t taking sides, and although I was shocked at his words, I followed him.


We went back downstairs, and Al went to talk to his Mum privately, leaving me waiting for him in the hall. I was looking at all the family photos on the wall; there were pictures of James and Al together through the years, always the best of friends. I sighed. Would they ever get over this?


“Rose?” 


I tuned around, and it was Beth of all people, looking at me sadly. “Can we talk?” She asked me, leading me out to the garden. 


“First of all,” She said. “Please let me apologise for this, I am ashamed of how I’ve acted, and for the implications.” 


I nodded, believing her. Beth had always been the most responsible out of all of us, the one who you could always count on to do the right thing. I believed that she regretted this mistake. 


“I can’t bear to see them fight like this,” She whispered. “And I have a life to get back to…I can’t do this. Rose,” She said, looking at me tearfully. “You’re the only Healer I know apart from Al, and I trust you. Will you…will you help me get rid of this baby?” 


My eyes widened shock as I gasped. Was she seriously asking me this? I raised my eyebrows at her, willing her to take it back. But she didn’t, she just looked at me, waiting for my answer.


“Let me get this straight,” I said. “You’re asking me to abort your baby?” I asked her. “A baby which happens to be my second-cousin?” 


“Please,” She said crying. “Please understand, it’s for the best.” 


I shook my head, hating her. “No. No way. I won’t Beth, I won’t help you kill James’ child.” 


“It’s for the best,” She whispered again. 


“What if Megan had done the same because it was for the best?” I demanded. “What if she had just done away with Allie?” 


Beth shook her head, tears rolling down her cheeks. I was surprised she had any tears left, that she could cry any more. 


“My answer is no,” I said, coldly. “Now if you don’t mind I need to get back to my cousin.”

*

Mark and I had decided to go out for dinner, leaving Albus alone at our flat. We dropped in at Mum and Dad’s on the way, but Dad brushed off my enquiries as to how he was feeling, more interested in the James/Albus/Beth love triangle. 


“I feel so drained,” I laughed, as we waited for our starters. “I swear to God Mark, this month has been so dramatic.”


“You’ve got that right,” He admitted. “I for one can’t wait till the honeymoon; three weeks of just you, me and the sun.” 


“Oh that sounds like heaven,” I grinned. “Can’t we just go now?” 


Mark laughed. “Yeah I’m sure St Mungo’s and the Ministry can cope without us.” 


“Definitely,” I smiled. “So Beth wants me to perform an abortion on her unborn child,” I said, conversationally masking the drama. 


Mark raised his eyebrows at me. “Are you serious? Jesus Christ.” 


I laughed. “Yeah, that’s pretty much how I took it. I never thought I’d be asked to murder my own baby cousin, but there you go. Don’t get me wrong,” I said. “I know this must be really difficult for her, but Megan was brave enough to go through with it, and imagine she hadn’t? There would be no Allie.” 


Mark nodded. “Though I don’t think it’s quite that simple when it’s you, Rose,” He said, fairly.


“I know,” I admitted. “But hopefully when the day comes that I am pregnant, I will be ready and happy about it.” 


“A couple of years down the line, who knows,” Said Mark smiling. “I’d be quite interested to see a little version of you and me mixed together.”


I grinned at the thought. “I would love that some day,” I told him. 


“Me too,” He said. “When we’re ready, when we’re financially prepared as well as everything else.”


“Yeah don’t worry,” I laughed. “I don’t plan on a shotgun wedding or anything!” 


“Well you never know,” He said. “They say these things come in threes.” 


“I can assure you I’m not pregnant,” I laughed. 


“Good,” He said, grinning. “I think that might give your Dad another heart attack.”


I laughed. “I think you’re right. Mark?” I said, carefully.


“Yeah?” 


“I need to talk to you about something…” I said. “It’s kind of complicated.”


“It always is with you,” He joked. “What’s up?” 


“Well,” I said. “I know we invited Scorpius to the wedding, but I think I need to retract the invitation,” I said quietly.


“Why?” He asked, frowning. “I thought you were friends?”


“So did I,” I admitted. “But there’s just too much history there, Mark. I’m just…not comfortable with having him there, it would be strange.” 


“Because everyone thought it would be him you would be marrying?” He asked, failing to hide the pain in his voice.


I reached across the table to take his hand. “I know how hard it must be for you; please just take comfort in the fact that it’s you I’m marrying.” 


He nodded, sadly. “I know.” He said, sighing. “I’ve heard all about Rose Weasley and Scorpius Malfoy, and their great love story…but maybe we can write our own story?” 


I smiled. “That sounds perfect.” 


“I think so too,” He said, smiling as well. “But please just tell me, is there anything else I need to know?” 


I wanted to tell him about the kiss, but something stopped me as I shook my head and lifted his hand to my lips. For now, neither of us would surrender to the chaos the knowledge of that kiss would provoke. Mark was my everything, and I loved him unconditionally. 


And yet I couldn’t be honest with him. I pushed these doubts to the back of my mind for the time being. I was just being silly, right?



*

A/N Right? What do you think? Is Rose being silly? Let me know what you think, and let me apologise now for the lack of Scorp, he will be featured in Chapter 9! x

Chapter 9: Every Day Is Like A Sunday
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Eight chapters in and over a hundred reviews, you guys are amazing! Chapter title inspired by The Smiths! Okay I have left a VERY long mini-essay style authors note at the end, but I'd be grateful if you would read when you get to the end of the chappie! Enjoy!!

*

I waited nervously for someone to answer the large, dark oak door. I hadn’t been here in such a long time; it had never exactly been something I liked doing back when I felt like I had to. So now, it was honestly the last place in the world I wanted to be. I took a deep breath, bracing myself, as a horribly familiar, middle-aged, white-blonde man answered the door, looking astounded to see me.

“Rose,” Draco said, frowning. “It’s been…a while.”

“Yes it has, Mr Malfoy,” I said awkwardly, trying to manage a smile. “How are you?”

“Well I’m very well thank you,” He muttered. “Happy to have Scorpius back, you know. Come in,” He said, standing aside to let me enter.

“Sorry to disturb you,” I said, as he led me into the living room, where Astoria and Scorpius were sitting.

“Rose!” Said Astoria, grinning. She got up and came over to me, enveloping me in a motherly embrace. “We haven’t seen you in so long!”

“I know, it’s nice to see you Mrs Malfoy,” I said, smiling at her. “How are you doing?”

“Great, thank you. But what about you, Rose? We heard you’re getting married, congratulations!”

“Oh, thank you,” I smiled. “I can’t wait.”

“What was it – Mark?” Asked Draco, sitting down. He didn’t sound all that interested to be honest, but I figured he was just asking to be polite.

“Yes, Mark Oliver,” I said. “You might know him from the ministry actually; he’s in Magical Law…”

“Doesn’t ring a bell,” Said Draco. “So how are things going at St Mungo’s?”

“Really well,” I answered. “I love being a Healer, it’s so fulfilling.”

“Oh Rose, we heard about your poor father; how is he?” Said Astoria, looking concerned.

“Oh, well he’s getting there.” I said, awkwardly. “The tests came back saying he’s diabetic, so it just means a few adjustments but he’s coping.”

“You’ll have to pass on our regards,” Said Draco, quietly.

“Of course,” I said. “Anyway, I really don’t want to keep any of you,” I said, looking at Scorpius. “I was just wondering if I could talk to you, Scorpius.”

He nodded, getting up. “Sure thing,” He said.

“Just go on up to your room, sweetheart,” Said Astoria. “Rose you certainly know your way around this place as well as the rest of us.”

I laughed uncomfortably. “That’s true,” I said, as I followed Scorpius out of the room.

The house was exactly the same as I remembered it; decorated lavishly, in Slytherin colours, and very grand. I had felt quite intimidated the first time I’d come, not long after we’d told his parents. They’d invited us over for dinner so we could meet properly, and it had been awkward, yet it had gone without any real disaster. As we walked upstairs, I looked at the walls, where Astoria had hung several family photos; mostly of Scorpius. My heart skipped a beat as I recognised one of him and me, one Christmas.

Scorpius led me into his familiar bedroom; I’d spent many nights here before we’d gotten our own place and a few after that too. It was decorated in shades of blue, with a grand, king-sized bed with four posters and thick, blue velvet hangings. I tore my eyes away from the bed, too many intimate memories rushing to the forefront of my mind. Scorpius had a few photos in his room, too. I looked around at them as he offered me a drink, shaking my head.

He still had the same dark wood desk, with the Slytherin banner hung above it. I walked over to it to look at the many photos sitting there; one of him with the rest of the Slytherin Quidditch team, all in their uniforms. There was one of him and Al, from when they’d gone on holiday with several of the other guys they were friends with, to Greece. There was a photo of Megan, Steven, him and myself, at a ministry event he’d dragged us all to; we’d been the youngest people there. And then, half hidden behind a picture of him with his Mum was a familiar photo of him and I; it was one I’d taken, I remembered, as a joke. We were lying in our bed at the old flat, and he was sleeping soundly while I was pulling some silly face; he’d found it really funny when I showed it to him, and he’d framed it and hung it up on our old kitchen. I sighed and looked over at him.

“I’m really glad you came, Rose,” He said, sitting on the window seat. “I’ve been meaning to talk to you as well.”

“Oh,” I said. “Well as I said, I wanted a word with you, so…look,” I said, looking up at him. “I know I invited you to the wedding but I don’t really feel comfortable with it now so…well I’d rather you didn’t come, Scorpius.”

Scorpius raised his eyebrows, as if this was completely off what he’d been expecting me to say. “Right,” He said. “I see…what brought that on?”

“Are you kidding?” I laughed. “What do you think? Scorpius you kissed me!”

“I know,” He said, apologetically. “And I realise that I shouldn’t have done that, and I have no excuse. I’ve never been able to function properly around you Rose, but I shouldn’t have kissed you.”

“No,” I agreed. “It put me in a really difficult position with Mark, I didn’t know if I should tell him or not…for the record I haven’t so you mustn’t tell a soul, Scorpius. And more than that, you can’t just go around kissing people like that, it’s not fair! You don’t get to do things like that anymore, Scorpius; we’re not in school anymore!”

“I know,” He admitted, sounding ashamed.

I sighed. “I thought we could put the past behind us and be friends…but I don’t think that’s going to work out; so I don’t really see any other option. I don’t think we can be in each other’s lives, Scorpius,” I said. This was hard; I never thought I’d have to let him go out of my life again, even just as a friend.

“Well,” He said, tiredly. “If you’re cutting me out of your life, Rose, can you at least hear me out first?”

“I don’t know…” I admitted. “I’m not sure it would do any good.”

“I need to talk to you,” He whispered. “I need to explain – I’ve been carrying this around with me for two and a half years and –”

“Okay!” I said, sighing again. “Alright, I’ll hear you out. It honestly doesn’t make a difference anymore anyway.”

He nodded, taking a deep breath. “Right,” He said. “Well first of all I’m sorry, I know that sounds stupid but I really am sorry, Rose, for hurting you. It was never my intention.”

I nodded. “I believe you,” I said, honestly. “But you did, all the same.”

“Yeah I know. Rose what you have to remember is I was only nineteen; I was just a boy. And I was living without the safety net of my parents, or Hogwarts, for the first time in my life…and when they offered me the promotion it was like an alarm bell.”

“What do you mean?” I asked, frowning.

He sighed. “Like, I saw it Rose – everything you assumed we’d do; I saw it. I saw us living together in Wales, getting engaged, getting married eventually. Having kids, maybe moving back here, maybe moving somewhere else; and growing old together. I could imagine it all, Rose.”

“So why was that a problem?” I asked him, before I could stop myself. I was getting more honesty out of Scorpius Malfoy now, than in the ten years I’d known him.

“Because I was shit scared,” He said, simply. “I wasn’t ready, and I was scared that everyone would expect us to start doing all of that stuff right there and then and I freaked out. And here’s the kicker,” He said, smiling ironically. “By the time I got to Cardiff, I realised what you were trying to tell me – that you weren’t ready for any of it either.”

I laughed bitterly. “Maybe you should have listened to me at the time, eh?”

“You have no idea how much I wish I had,” He said, seriously. “In the past two and a half years, I haven’t had one single relationship; I’ve had a total of twelve one night stands, which sounds a lot but I was lonely up there, and no relationships. That’s it.”

“Is that supposed to impress me?”

“No,” He said. “But that was why I was so surprised to hear you were getting married, Rose, because I couldn’t understand how you could have moved on.”

“Well I’m very sorry I got on with my life,” I said, coldly. “What did you expect me to do?”

“I’m not saying you were wrong, Rose.” He told me. “And it took me all of fifteen minutes being in Mark’s company to realise why you’re with him; he’s everything I’m not: dependable, selfless, committed…”

“Are you sure you don’t want to marry him?” I joked, trying to break the tension.

Scorpius laughed. “You know what I mean.”

“I do,” I said, nodding. “Mark is perfect. And I hope you don’t think I just moved on easily…the truth is I was a mess for so long Scorpius. Such a mess, which is sort of the main reason why my Dad hates you.”

“Well,” He said. “I’m used to a bit of hostility from your Dad; comes with the territory.”

“Yeah,” I smiled.

“Look, I know you don’t care about any of this anymore,” He said. “I just wanted to explain…I’m sorry if I bored you.”

“It’s okay,” I told him. “It’s sort of nice…to finally understand. You’re still an arsehole, though.” I laughed.

He nodded. “I can live with that, but Rose, please just remember I’m not the same boy who skipped out on you back then. I’ve changed.”

“Okay,” I said simply. What else could I say? It didn’t make a difference.

“Anyway,” He said. “I will stay away from your wedding,” He promised. “You can count on that; and I hope you have a great day, you deserve it.”

“Thanks Scorpius,” I whispered. I felt as though something very acute had changed in the last fifteen minutes; it was as if I’d been introduced to Scorpius the Man, rather than the boy I’d known all these years. “Look maybe you should come,” I said, feeling bad. “All that stuff’s in the past now anyway and –”

“I won’t, if you don’t mind,” He said, smiling. “I know I’m being mature and stuff but…well I could never watch you marry someone else, Rose. That would be asking a little too much of myself.”

“Fair enough,” I said. “Bye Scorpius.”

*

After picking up dinner, I apparated home to find Albus lying across the couch in the lounge, watching the television Mum and Dad had bought us last Christmas. He was watching some animal show called Pet Rescue about all these sick animals; I knew this because he’d been tuning into it every night at five-thirty for the last week.

I sighed; I loved my cousin, but I was fast getting a bit sick of him. Working with him five days a week, and then living with him twenty four-seven? That was a bit much. He had promised he would think about going back home soon though, and I was extremely hopeful. With only a week left until the wedding, I was starting to fear the possibility that we would come back from out honeymoon and he would still be lying there, moping over the latest cat trapped down a drainpipe. I didn’t even like animals.

“Hi,” I said to them as I came in. Mark jumped up from the armchair across from Al and came over to me, helping me bring the bags into the kitchen like the gentleman he was. He set the shopping bags down onto the table and lifted mine out of my hands, before wrapping his arms around my waist.

“Hi to you too,” He murmured, kissing me. I smiled against his lips kissing him back. He pressed himself against me, pushing me against the table, and I ran my hands in his soft hair.

“Guys, I really don’t want to see that.” Said Al, coming in and helping himself to a biscuit out of one of the bags.

Mark groaned against my lips and I sighed, squeezing out round him.

“Albus,” I said. “You’re going to need to go soon,” I told him, trying to sound nice. “I know you don’t want to be near your brother just now but Mark and I are going to be newlyweds soon – that’s hard enough, but if we haven’t got any privacy…”

Al grinned at me. “I get it Rose,” He said, raising his eyebrows. “You want your sexy time, don’t you?”

Normally I would have smacked him or told him to bugger off, but I was so pleased to see him joking and smiling, that I just grinned back at him. Plus, he was right.

“Don’t sweat it guys,” He said. “I’ll be out by tomorrow night.”

“And you’ll go back home and talk to James?” Said Mark.

Al shrugged. “I didn’t say I was going home. I’m not ready to talk to James just yet. I’m still pissed off at him.”

“Well you’re just going to have to set those feelings aside,” Said Mark. “I mean it Al, you’re not ruining it for me.”

“Don’t put that on me, mate.” Complained Al. “I know it’s a big deal but…”

“Big deal?!” Said Mark, in despair. “It’s the best thing that I will ever do, or at least it should be!”

“Well,” Said Al. “Maybe a punch-up will liven it up a bit? Come on there’s got to be at least one fight!”

“Albus!” I cried in shock. “That’s our wedding day you’re talking about!”

“What?” Said Mark and Al together. “He’s not talking about the wedding!” Laughed Mark.

I frowned. “Then what are you talking about?”

“What do you think!” Laughed Al. “The stag of course!”

“Oh Jesus Christ…” I murmured, while they started discussing it excitedly once more.

I had spent the last month being told about this elusive stag night – not that I was allowed to call it a stag night, I had been instructed to refer to it as the Stag Experience, because it was going to be that epic. Apparently. Al had certainly pulled out all the stops as best man; he, Mark, and fifteen other men, including James, Stevie, and a large number of the Chudley Canons, were going on a three day bender to Prague, leaving tomorrow. Seriously. I suppose that was the drawback of marrying someone who was only twenty-three; he was still a big kid inside.

Those were the only details I’d been told; Prague, seventeen guys, three days. That was all I knew about where my fiancé would be disappearing off to tomorrow morning. They’d also told me it was a “Muggle Experience” because according to Al that made it “more fun”. Meaning they were going by aeroplane, staying in a regular Muggle hotel, and would be drinking normal Muggle alcohol; I was going to be astounded if all of them came back alive.

“Albus,” I said. “I’m going to be worrying about all of you enough as it is; it’s going to be ten times worse for me if you and James are fighting.”

“And it will ruin it for me!” Said Mark. “Come on, mate! It’s my stag!”

Al sighed. “Look, I’ll be civil, alright? But that’s all I can promise.”

Mark nodded. “I guess that’s all I can ask for.”

“You haven’t heard anything from Beth, have you?” I asked, carefully. “She hasn’t been in touch with you?”

“No,” Said Al. “Why?”

“I was just wondering,” I said hastily. “I’m going to call James, see if he’s spoken to her.”

“Why are you so interested in Beth?” Demanded Al, frowning at me.

“Well, I’m a Healer, aren’t I?” I improvised, shrugging. “I just want to make sure she’s going to her check-ups and everything.”

James and I were one of the few people in the family who had invested in phones; after all we were one of the small numbers out of our generation who had our own flats. I only had a house phone, but James also had a mobile, which was pretty helpful.

I made the phone call from my bedroom, not really wanting Albus to overhear anything; I hadn’t mentioned the whole abortion conversation to anyone except Mark.

James answered after three rings.

“Hello?” He said.

“Hi, it’s me,” I said. “How are you?”

“I’m okay,” He answered. “How’s Al?”

“He’s alright,” I told him. “Are you looking forward to Prague?”

James laughed. “No, not really. Not anymore.”

“I know it’s come at a bad time,” I said. “But Mark’s really looking forward to it, and Al said he’d be civil to you so that’s something.”

“Yeah,” Was all he said.

“So have you spoken to Beth?” I asked him, quietly.

“Not for a few days,” He said. “I’ve owled her, actually but she didn’t reply. We still haven’t made any decisions about…you know…”

“The baby,” I said. “Well let me know if you hear from her. And have fun in Prague okay? Please look after them, James.”

He laughed. “Take it easy, Rosie. We’ll be fine.”

“I hope so,” I said, anxiously. “Well I’ll talk to you when you get back.”

“Bye,” He said, disconnecting.

“Rose?” I heard Al call from the living room. “Eastenders is on!”

I sighed, shaking my head. The sooner that boy made up with his brother the better; he was turning into my Mum.

*

“And you definitely cleared it with St Mungo’s about having Monday off?” I asked Al the next morning, looking from him to Mark. “And you? They’re definitely okay with it?”

It was Saturday, and they were just about to leave to head for the airport, where they were meeting everyone else.

“Definitely,” Said Mark. “Relax, we’ll be fine.”

“Please be careful,” I said, stroking his hair out his eyes. “I’m going to be worried sick about you all.”

“Yeah right,” Said Mark. “Until tonight when your hen weekend kicks off, then you’ll be smashed and you won’t care!”

I laughed. “Well just don’t do anything stupid,” I said, hugging him. “I love you.”

“I love you too,” He said, kissing me gently.

“You too Al,” I said, when we stopped. “Be careful, come back in one piece.”

“I promise,” He laughed, hugging me.

I didn’t have long in the flat on my own after they left. As soon as Megan had dropped Allie off at her parents, she came straight round; she and Dom were staying tonight whenever we came in. I hugged her when she arrived; it felt like I hadn’t seen her in ages.

“So what have I missed?” She asked, as I plated up the pancakes I’d made for us.

“Too much,” I laughed. “Scorpius and I called a truce, sort of, and Beth basically asked me if I wouldn’t mind performing an abortion on my unborn, baby cousin.”

Megan gasped. “No way! What a cheek!”

“I know,” I said. “Did you invite her to the hen night, by the way?”

“Well I had,” She said. “But I honestly don’t think she’ll show up; I mean nobody’s heard from her, have they?”

“No,” I admitted.

“So what do you think she’ll do? Have an abortion?”

I shrugged. “It’s not really a decision she can make herself, is it? I mean she has to consult James.”

“I suppose,” She said, nodding. “And a truce with Scorp?”

“Yeah,” I said. “But he’s not coming to the wedding, which is probably a good thing.” I told her.

“Right,” She said, taking another bite of her pancakes. “So, I have lots planned for you today! This is your hen weekend, last weekend as a free woman and I intend to send you off in style!”

“Well I’m honoured,” I laughed. “But I want to go round Mum and Dad’s first if you don’t mind? Just to check on them.”

“That’s fine,” She said. “I haven’t seen your parents in ages!”

I thought I may faint when I walked into my house, not bothering to knock because it was my home, and found my parents passionately kissing in the kitchen. Not a joke. I was repulsed.

“You are disgusting!” I told them, when they had managed to control themselves. “There should be laws about that kind of thing!”

“Don’t be silly, Rose!” Laughed Mum.

“I’m not!” I insisted. “You are far too old to be kissing. You’re just lucky it was me that caught you and not Hugo.”

“Well considering you no longer live here and Hugo is away at Hogwarts, I honestly don’t see the problem,” Said Dad.

“Anyway, how are you Megan?” Asked Mum politely.

“I’m fine thanks,” She smiled. “I’m so excited about tonight!”

“Where are you going?” Asked Dad, sounding worried.

“We’re just heading to a few clubs,” Said Megan. “The fun generally comes to us, when we go out.”

“You’re wild enough!” Laughed Mum. “Who’s all going, anyway?”

“Well there’s me, Rose, Dominique, Roxanne, Victoire, Sophie, Grace, despite the whole Al drama, Frankie from my work, and a few girls from Rose’s work.” Megan told them, counting them off on her fingers. “I had invited Beth but…”

“Yes, but indeed.” Said Mum, shaking her head disapprovingly. She had been very vocal about the whole situation.

“It’s not exactly that wild,” I assured them. “Considering what the boys are doing!”

Dad laughed. “That trip sounds fantastic. I wish I was going.”

“Yeah right,” Said Mum, laughing. “That amount of alcohol would give another heart attack.”

I laughed. “How long before those jokes start to get annoying Dad?”

“Start?” He said, frowning.

“Well I think the trip is a good idea,” Said Mum. “Anything that might make those two idiots talk to each other. Ginny and Harry are beside themselves with worry!”

“Well Mark made Al promise he’ll be civil to James,” I told them. “So hopefully it’ll be okay.”

“And I warned Stevie to make sure they don’t end up fighting again,” Megan added.

“How is Allie?” Asked Mum, smiling.

“Oh she’s fine,” Laughed Megan. “She can’t for the wedding of course, because she’s desperate to wear that dress.”

“Oh bless her,” Said Mum. “You know I can’t get over the fact that she is already four! Where have the years gone?”

“Well I don’t know about you lot,” Said Megan. “But I spent them getting married, getting a house, starting a business and raising my adorably insane daughter!”

“And yet you haven’t changed a bit Megan,” Said Dad, laughing.

“I doubt she ever will,” I joked.

Megan took me to a spa treatment thing after we left Mum and Dad’s; it was a full pampering day, she told me. After having every inch of my body massaged, moisturised, polished and tanned, I was finally allowed to go. We went for dinner, and then went back to my flat to get ready.

I was just drying my hair with my wand when they all arrived; loud, excitable and very glamorous. They had bought all the typical hen night accessories; L-plates, veils, whistles – the lot. Roxanne, Dom and Sophie appeared to already be drunk, not that I was surprised.

“Megan,” I murmured as I opened another bottle of wine for them while they waited on us.

“Yes?” She asked me.

“You haven’t got a stripper, have you?” I asked, laughing nervously.

Megan grinned. “Oh Rose, after ten years you really should know me well enough to know the answer to that question!”

So that would be a yes. This was going to be a very interesting night…

*





A/N I wanted to include the hen night in this chapter, but it was getting too long so Chapter 10 will pick up where we left off here :) 

Okay, I thought I might give you a little bit of background info on how I came to the decision to write this, and what inspired it, as I'm getting the feeling some of you aren't really loving the direction the sequel has taken, which makes me sad - the most important thing is that my dedicated readers and reviewers are happy :) So hopefully this might shed a bit of light on where I'm heading with this! If you get bored and give up I don't blame you!!!

So it was about a month ago when I decided to do the sequel, I'd written the first chapter of it, which had literally just come spilling out of me like a day after I finished Temptation. I was sitting on the train on my way to Uni, for once without my crazy friends, Gail and Michaela, who btw are like my very own Megan and Dom! Due to the fact that I was on my own, I had my ipod in when the song "Till Kingdom Come" by Coldplay came on. I don't know why, but in the opening few bars I started to think about the characters and what would have happened to them after Temptation - and all of these ideas started flooding to me. The lyrics of "Till Kingdom Come" (which if you haven't listened to I thoroughly recommend!) made me think of Scorpius and Rose's relationship in so many ways, and by the time the song ended I HAD to write the sequel. Now every time I listen to it I think of the story, which is why I named the sequel after it. I often play the song while I'm writing, and it always gives me motivation if I'm stuck or anything. This song has literally inspired the entire story so far, and for those of you who are eager to know what might or might not happen, I recommend you download this song and listen to it, it may give you a few ideas! However, I don't even know exactly what's going to happen in the very end, though I have a vague idea! 

So I hope that was illuminating and not boring! Just thought I'd give you that little bit of background information, take from it what you will, or ignore it completely - it's up to you my lovelies!

Now I hope you enjoyed the chapter - thoughts? xxxx


Chapter 10: Until You Were Gone
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Thanks guys for the helpful, kind and honest reviews to last chapter. I've had some annoying writer's block this week which is my explanation for the wait to this chapter :( I hope you enjoy!
*

One highly unimpressive stripper who couldn’t work the zip on his trousers and several shots of tequila later, I found myself sitting on the floor of a busy nightclub toilet, speaking to the cubicle door behind which Grace Patterson was currently hiding, crying over Albus.

“Come on, Grace,” I said, knocking the door again. “Just come out, you’ll have fun I promise!”

“I can’t!” She sobbed. “I can’t cope without him.”

I sighed. This wasn’t the normal, friendly, happy-go-lucky sober Grace talking; it was shitfaced Grace. One too many shots had left her deluding herself into thinking Albus had been the love of her life when in reality they’d only been going out a few months and she’d always known he was an arsehole who was still tragically hung up on his ex-girlfriend.

“Look, it’s my hen night Grace,” I said, appealing to her better nature. “Please come out so I can go and have some fun!”

I waited for a few more seconds, when I heard the merciful click of the lock on the door. I pulled myself back onto my feet, swaying slightly, and she came out.

Her face was blotchy and swollen, her hair a riot, and her make-up smeared and smudged.

“For Christ’s sake,” I said, pulling her over to the sinks. “All of this over Albus bloody Potter.” I took out my wand, and pointed it at her, slowly waving it across her so that her hair and make-up righted itself.

She looked in the mirror and managed a small smile. “Thanks Rose,” She said. “I really hope we will still be friends you know.”

“Of course we will!” I said, bracingly. “I stayed friends with Beth after she broke up with him! Oh…sorry,” I said, as her face fell.

“You don’t get it,” She said. “You have Mark, and he’s so perfect and lovely and you’re getting married to him! You don’t understand how I feel.”

“Trust me,” I said. “I know how it feels to have a broken heart and believe me, no man is worth it – I speak from experience.”

“You two are NOT still in here!” Shouted Megan, standing in the doorway. The last time I’d checked Megan had definitely been the most drunk out of all of us; it was because she got out the least.

“We’re just coming,” Said Grace. “Thanks Rose,” She mumbled.

We were led back out to the dance floor by Megan, who I noticed was struggling to stay upright, to the pack of girls. I had never seen them so wild; Megan, stumbling every few seconds, Sophie, absolutely wrecked and yelling down her phone to her poor boyfriend, Dominique, currently kissing some random guy so passionately it was a little scary, Victoire, crying for some unknown reason, and Roxanne, dancing with a man who appeared to have blue hair. The rest of them weren’t much better; I pitied my fellow Healers who were working in a few hours.

I laughed and grabbed Megan by the arm. “When are we going onto the next club?”

“I don’t know,” She shouted, looking at her watch. She stared at it, closing one eye, for several seconds. “It’s nearly four, I think we should go.”

“No!” I complained. “I don’t want the night to end yet! This is my last single-girl night out!”

“I know,” Said Megan, smiling madly at me. “We are continuing the party at your house!”

“What?” I demanded. “Are you serious?”

“Yes!” She laughed. She pulled the pink, furry whistle from around her neck and blew it for as long as her breath would allow. “Girls! We’re going!” She yelled.

They did not leave easily. Several of the girls insisted that we allowed them to stay on and party, and after several arguments and one spilled drink, Megan, Dom, Sophie, Roxy, and myself all decided to go back to mine; leaving all the Healers, Grace and Frankie in the club, and Victoire returning home to Teddy.

We all fell into my flat, shh-ing and tiptoeing noisier than ever, and most definitely wakening up the majority of my neighbours. By the time we were all in the living room, save Dom who was in my kitchen opening up several of the bottles of alcohol she had brought with her earlier this evening, three vases had been knocked over and two girls had already fallen.

I shook my head in amusement, highly impressed by the fact that I seemed to be the most sober out of all of us. It was really quite funny that Megan was in the biggest state, considering she was the only one married, the only Mum, and supposedly the most mature.

“I would like to propose a toast!” Exclaimed Dom, holding her glass aloft. “To Rose and Mark!”

“That’s what you do at the wedding, Dom!” Said Roxy, throwing a cushion at our cousin.

We all laughed. I smiled around at them, feeling bad that Beth wasn’t here; it wasn’t right. I had known Beth for the same amount of time I’d known Megan, and in my last two years at Hogwarts she was one of my closest friends. It saddened me to think of the path her life had taken, when she really had been the nicest, kindest and most deserving out of all of us. She had worked so hard for a great life, and now it had been royally screwed up.

“I feel sorry for Beth,” I said.

“Are you serious?” Asked Dom, incredulously. “If you ask me she deserves what she gets.”

“Yeah,” I said. “I just think it’s a shame…I mean she should be here now and well, Merlin knows where she is.”

“You know, everyone is acting like her getting pregnant is the worst thing in the world,” Said Megan. “And I know it’s not the best situation she’s found herself in, and she’s certainly made mistakes but…well my Mum always says that falling pregnant with Allie was the making of me.”

“It was,” I said, while the others nodded in agreement.

“Well there you go then,” She said. “It certainly hasn’t been without its difficulties, and I know I’ve had it a lot easier than many people; but my baby girl is the best thing that ever happened to me, and the single most important thing in my life. And well…maybe it will be the same for Beth.”

I shrugged. “Here’s hoping. But that’s my point, guys,” I said, looking more at Megan, Dominique and Sophie than anyone else. “Megan you admit that you couldn’t have done it without your friends’ support…well why should it be any different with Beth?”

“Because Beth has broken our cousin’s heart,” Said Dom firmly. “And she is the reason they are currently not speaking. Blood’s thicker than water, Rose.”

“Maybe so, but my friends are important to me too,” I said. “I mean where would I be if it hadn’t been for all of you, after everything with Scorpius…?”

Dom and Megan both sighed. “That’s different,” Said Dom.

“And anyway, isn’t Scorpius a dirty word in the whole new ignoring him thing?” Asked Megan, laughing.

“I talked to him,” I said. “I think I understand now, what went on back then. We’re not friends but…we’re comfortable.”

Sophie burst out laughing, and I stared at her in shock. She raised her eyebrows at me, still laughing. “Oh come on, Rose.”

“Excuse me?” I asked, hurt.

“Well, we’ve been having the same conversation for the last ten years, Rose! I like Scorpius; I don’t like Scorpius – even on your bloody hen night to your wedding to someone else!”

“Sophie!” Said Dom, firmly. “That’s out of line.”

“And for the record we have not been having any conversation for the last ten years Sophie,” I said, angrily. “I haven’t seen you in three years!”

“Guys, come on,” Said Megan, hastily.

“Don’t put that on me!” Said Sophie. “You never sent me any owls either! I’m sorry I wasn’t around when you and Scorpius broke up, but to be honest things haven’t changed much since the last time I saw you!”

I shook my head at her. “Things haven’t changed much? I am engaged to someone else – I am marrying Mark in four day’s time! I am over Scorpius!”

“Rose,” Said Roxanne, meaningfully. “You can’t honestly say you’re over him…”

“Yes I can!” I said. “Since when did you all know me so well that you knew what I was feeling better than I do myself?” I demanded, angrily.

“I never said anything!” Said Dom, defensively.

“No, you didn’t,” I said. “Sophie’s said it all, hasn’t she?”

Sophie shook her head at me angrily, and I felt anger boiling up in me towards her. Where had this come from? Were my friends really this doubtful about my commitment to Mark?

“I’m not trying to upset you,” Said Sophie, quietly. “But you have to admit this whole Scorpius thing is a bit of a broken record…”

“Sophie, you really don’t know what you’re talking about,” Said Dom, and in that moment I was so grateful towards my cousin, who had jumped to my defence rather than my best friend, who was saying nothing.

“Rose has been through a lot with Scorpius,” She continued. “A lot more than you understand, and it’s been really hard for her, with him coming back into our lives.”

Sophie shrugged ignorantly, and I shook my head at her. “What do you have to say about all of this?” She asked Megan, her eyebrows raised.

Megan looked horribly uncomfortable, as she shrugged in response. “I don’t know,” She said, in a small voice.

I stared at her. “What do you mean you don’t know?” I said, astounded.

“I don’t want to get involved,” She said, looking at me pleadingly.

“Megs – you’ve been involved for the past ten years!” Said Dominique.

“Surely you must have some opinion,” Declared Sophie. “So what is it?”

“She said she doesn’t want to get involved!” I said, firmly, now not wanting to hear her answer.

Sophie, Dominique, Roxanne and I all stared at Megan, me willing her not to say what I knew was coming.

“I’ve always hoped…” She said in small voice. “That Rose and Scorpius would end up together, despite all the stuff he’s put her through.”

I looked away from her, feeling tears come to my eyes. I wasn’t sure why exactly those words hurt me so much, but out of everything that had been said tonight, that hurt the most.

You said you liked Mark,” I whispered, tearfully.

“I do!” She insisted. “I like him a lot. He’s so good for you but…he’s not Scorpius, Rose!”

The rest of the girls were silent, realising that this had gone past them. This was something more serious.

“I can’t believe I’m hearing this,” I muttered. “From my best friend. Megan, you know me better than anyone else in the world…”

“Yes, I do,” She agreed. “And sometimes I see the sides of you that you don’t.”

I shook my head at her, my temper flaring to the surface. “Well if that’s how you feel, I don’t know why you’re here! Why Megan, if you think I’m making a mistake, are you here, planning my hen night, taking me out?”

“I wanted to support you,” She cried, her eyes pleading.

“In something you thought was a mistake?!” I demanded, throwing my arms wide at my side in audacity. “You’re supposed to be the maid of honour, Megan!”

“I am!” She insisted, tears rolling down her cheeks. “This is why I didn’t want to say anything about it Rose, it’s not my place…”

“I don’t believe this,” I said. “You were the one, Megan, who held me all those times while I cried over Scorpius, telling me something better would come along, that I would do better than him! And now you’re saying what? That I should be marrying him instead of Mark?”

“I don’t think that’s what she’s saying, Rose,” Said Roxanne. “She’s just saying it’s not what she…expected, that’s all!”

I wiped the tears away from my face, and ran my hands through my hair. I couldn’t believe this was happening; I genuinely could not believe it.

“I’m just looking out for you,” Said Megan, defiantly. “The same way you always have for me.”

“I always accepted your choices Megan – if it made you happy then I was happy for you!”

Megan laughed coldly, her cheeks flaming. “Like when I let Steven back into my life, you mean? You certainly didn’t accept that decision Rose! What was it you called him? The arsehole we don’t name?”

“That was when you were pregnant with Allie!” I shouted. “He was an arsehole back then!”

“Yeah well you know what?” She yelled. “So was Scorpius! And so is Mark sometimes! He’s not the bloody perfect guy you think he is Rose, because I’ve got news for you nobody is perfect!”

I stared at my best friend, my chest rising and falling in my worked up state. It was only now that I realised that we were both on our feet, standing across from each other. The words seemed to hang in the air, hurting both of us more than I could say.

“Right,” I said, in almost a whisper. “Well if that’s how you feel maybe you should go.”

Megan nodded, angrily. “Maybe you’re right,” She said, pulling out her wand and picking up her bag. She looked at me one last time, with an unreadable expression I’d never seen from her before, and then apparated away from me.

I didn’t move, nor did I look at the other girls. I heard Roxanne and Sophie quietly say that they were leaving, that it was late, but I didn’t respond while Dominique said goodbye to them. I didn’t look as I heard them apparate, leaving Dom and I alone in my living room.

“Rose?” Whispered Dom, taking my hand.

She pulled me gently down to the sofa, so I was sitting next to her. I was frozen in shock. Never, in ten years of friendship, never had Megan and I argued once. Not one argument, never fallen out, never even disagreed about a single thing.

“Did that just happen?” I whispered, shakily.

“I’m afraid so,” Said Dom, apologetically. “Are you okay?”

“No,” I said, tearfully. “I’m not.”

“It’ll be okay,” She said, putting her arms around me. “It will.”

“Do you think they’re right? What they said about Scorpius?” I asked her in a tiny voice.

Dominique sighed. “I think you are the only one who knows your heart, Rose,” She told me. “And you say you love Mark, so that’s your answer.”

I nodded. “This is such a mess,” I whispered. “Four days before the wedding, and this happens, and Megan and Roxy aren’t going to be speaking to me and they’re both bridesmaids and -”

“Shh,” Said Dom, stroking my hair. “We’ll sort it out, okay? Let’s just get some sleep just now.”

We lay there, Dominique offering me quiet words of comfort while I cried over the mess Megan and I had made of things; until eventually sleep came over us, offering me a peaceful escape from everything, if only temporarily.

*

I was awakened, I suspected, by the pounding pressure on my head. I scrunched my eyes shut as the bright sun flooded in past the unclosed curtains, sitting up slowly. Dominique was lying at the other end of the sofa, curled up, still wearing her party dress. I rubbed my eyes, sighing at the disaster area my living room resembled.

It was only then that I realised it hadn’t been my spinning headache that had woken me up, but a light tapping at my window. I frowned, looking around until I saw the familiar, caramel-coloured tawny owl, tapping its beak at the glass impatiently. I sighed, as the unforeseen words said between Megan and I the night before rang in my ears, hurtful and cruel.

I stumbled over to the window, tripping over shoes, glasses and knocked-over vases, to let the bird in.

“Thanks, Lou,” I muttered, stroking the owl’s furry head. I untied the letter and let him back out, where he soared high into the blue sky, his wings spread proudly.

I sat back down next to the still sleeping Dom, and slit the letter open. I recognised the writing, of course, though it seemed messier than usual, as if she’d rushed it:

Rose,

I’m sorry. I’m sending this with Lou and then apparating straight to the park down the street from your flat; if you want to talk to me, meet me there – I’ll be waiting.

I love you,

Megan

I smiled at her words, relieved, confused and upset all at once. More than anything else, I knew I had to talk to her. I went into the bedroom and took off my dress, pulling on a pair of plain, dark denim jeans and a white jumper instead. I scribbled a note to Dom telling her where I’d gone, picked up my wand, and dissaparated.

She was waiting, as promised. I managed a small smile for her as she got up from the bench on which she’d been sitting, and shrugged at me, smiling too.

“Hi,” I said quietly. 

“Hi,” She said back. “I’m really sorry Rose-”

“No,” I argued. “I’m sorry.”

Megan laughed, shaking her head. We looked each other in the eyes for a second, communicating more in this way than we could by speech.

“I was out of line,” She said, apologetically. “Sometimes I forget that it’s my best friend I’m talking to, and not my daughter.”

I laughed. “Well that’s reassuring. Look its fine,” I told her. “I realise now that you were just looking out for me…but I just need you to let me make my own decisions on this one Megan, and if I end up making mistakes then I’ll learn from them.”

“I know,” She admitted. “I’m just protective over you; you know you’re like my sister, Rose.”

“Same here,” I said. “And I’m sorry about – well Steven’s not an arsehole…”

“No he’s not,” She agreed. “And I’m sorry for what I said about Mark; you know I like him I just…” She trailed off, shaking her head. “I guess I just really like Scorpius too…”

I nodded. “Look, let’s just forget the whole thing, yeah?”

Megan smiled. “I think that’s a good idea,”

I closed the distance between her and hugged her tightly, laughing at the tears which filled my eyes.

“So I have half an hour before I have to get Allie,” She said. “Fancy some breakfast?”

“I would love some,” I said. “I’m starving.”

“I mean we don’t fight!” Said Megan, five minutes later as we tucked into a full-english in the local café. “We just don’t!”

“I know,” I said, laughing. “I blame the presence of alcohol and Sophie.”

“It would never have happened if Beth had been there,” She laughed, agreeing.

I ate forkful of my eggs, looking at her thoughtfully. “Megan,” I said. “You know how much I appreciate you, don’t you? Because I know I don’t always say it, but you mean a lot. And I love the fact that you look out for me, and I know you just want me to be happy…”

“I know,” She smiled. “I think when two people have been friends as long as we have, and been through as much as we have – three very complicated relationships, several bitchy girls, two broken hearts, countless exams, one wedding, one heart attack, two flats, one house, and one teenage pregnancy - ” She shook her head, laughing. “Well sometimes you forget to thank each other.”

“Nicely put,” I joked. “It sounds like a lot, doesn’t it?”

“It is a lot,” She said, grinning. “And you got me through the most difficult and most vulnerable time of my life.”

I nodded. “When you lost your Gucci shoes?”

Megan burst out laughing. “Yes, that’s what I was referring to! Not, you know, having a baby daughter at the age of seventeen or anything!”

“You know it really is a shame that we like men,” I said. “Think how much more simple our lives would be if we just married each other.”

“As if you could get a catch like me!” She laughed. “I am sorry, Rose,” She said.

“Me too,” I replied, smiling. “I love you, you crazy bitch.”

She laughed. “I love you too, you mad tart!”

*

By the time Monday evening came around, everything had pretty much gone back to normal; I’d had a normal day at work, I was excited about Hugo coming home from Hogwarts tomorrow to stay for the wedding, and I was also looking forward to seeing Mark, who was due home any minute.

Thankfully, Megan and I were totally fine; even if I did somewhat know her true feelings. The things that had been said by my friends over the weekend, save Dom who had stayed unwaveringly loyal to me, made me feel uncomfortable. How many other people felt this way? Did my loved ones honestly think I should be with Scorpius? Well I knew my Mum and Dad certainly didn’t; well Dad at least, anyway. Surely they all knew how unhappy Scorpius had made me, how he broke my heart. Meanwhile Mark had only ever made me happy.

Why was that so difficult for them to understand?

I had sometimes considered telling Megan, and Al and maybe some of the others, what really happened between Scorpius and I; why we broke up. Maybe then they would understand better. But I had made a promise to myself, the only people who would ever know were Scorpius, Dominique, and myself; the original love triangle, funnily enough.

So now I knew what everyone else wanted; but what did I want? That was a good question. I wanted Mark; I already had Mark and I was marrying him in a few days. But here was the problem; before, when it was just Mark and I, and we were insanely happy and loved up, I saw everything in black and white. When Scorpius came back though, everything got all confusing and shaken, and everything in my life faded into shades of grey.

I smiled as I heard Mark come in through the door. I was sitting on the sofa, going over the seating plan for the reception, which was to be held at Uncle Harry and Aunt Ginny’s; their grand, lavish dining area provided the perfect staging area and they had happily offered it to us.

“I’m home,” He called, coming in.

“So you’re alive then?” I laughed, as he sat down next to me.

“Barely,” He muttered, leaning in to kiss me.

“I missed you,” I told him as his lips left mine. “Did you have fun?”

“Yeah,” He said. “It was eventful though,” He told me, laughing.

“Did my cousins behave themselves?” I asked, linking my fingers through his and stroking his hair with my other hand.

“They did,” He assured me. “They actually seemed to get on not so bad.”

“Really? That’s good.” I said, smiling. I moved in closer to him and leaned my head onto his shoulder, a warm feeling spreading through me at his return.

“I love you,” He told me, sleepily.

“I love you more,” I insisted.

Mark laughed. “Not possible. So how about you – anything eventful happen here that I should know about?”

I looked up at him, and sighed. “Absolutely nothing.” 

*



A/N Believe me, as frustrated as you are with Rose right now, I am more frustrated - however an easy, simple story where Rose knows exactly what she wants and lives happily ever after would be very boring, wouldn't it? I want to clarify that she does love Mark a lot and she does want to marry him. Anywho, review? xxx

Chapter 11: You Could Be Happy
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N I'm really sorry for the wait, I have my university spanish oral exam a week today and I am stressing out! Anyways here we go, chapter title goes to Snow Patrol this time! AND for the first time in my writing career I have a switch in point of view towards the end of the chapter - I switch from Rose to Megan, and I think it's pretty clear, I've put "Megan" in italics where the change occurs. I hope you guys like it, I think it works okay and it was vital to the story! Enjoy!

*

I grinned as my eighteen-year-old brother came into view, stepping off the train with Lily and scanning the station for me. I had jumped at the chance when Mum and Dad had asked me to pick them up, finding it quite funny that they would have to get the Hogwarts Express just the two of them.

“Hugo!” I shouted, waving at my brother. He and Lily smiled and walked over to me, looking slightly tired but happy all the same.

I grabbed Hugo and hugged him tightly. “How are you?” I said, looking at him.

“Fine,” He said. “I missed you sis,”

“I missed you too, little brother!” I laughed, kissing him on the head. He glared at me and pushed away from me.

“People are looking!” He said, shaking his head.

“Well sorry!” I said. “Don’t forget I’m getting you out of school for three days! Hey Lil,” I said, turning to hug my cousin.

“So how are you?” Asked Hugo, as we walked out of the station to apparate round the back alley, where we wouldn’t be seen. As neither of them had their apparition license yet I had to side-along apparate them.

“I’m great,” I said, “I’m stressing out about Saturday, but I can’t wait.”

“Good,” Smiled Lily. “Well Hugo and I are really excited, aren’t we, Hugh?”

“Yeah,” He said. “Who is it you’re marrying again? Scorpius or Mark – I’ve lost track,” He joked.

I looked at him sternly. “Hugo, I will pay you not to say that again this weekend.”

Hugo laughed. “So I guess we’ve missed some drama, eh Lils?”

“Yes speaking of which,” She said. “What’s going on with my brothers now are they speaking? Mum owled and told me what happened with Beth.”

I shrugged. “Your guess is as good as mine,” I said honestly. “As far as I’m aware Beth has gone AWOL and nobody has heard anything. As for Al and James…well I think they’re being civil to each other, Lily, and that’s probably about all you can hope for,”

Lily looked mutinous. “Civil, eh? Just wait until I see them.”

I looked away from her, terrified of provoking the famous Lily Potter temper; even Hugo looked a little afraid of her, and he was known for being the only one to stand up to her; her brothers certainly didn’t.

We apparated to the Potters’ first, to drop off Lily, though we didn’t stay long; Lily had been in the house all of five minutes, just managing to say hello to her Mum and Dad, before thundering up the stairs to find her brothers and make them talk to each other. Ginny watched her go, proudly, while Harry shook his head as if in resignation.

“How’s Dad?” Asked Hugo, quietly as we walked up the path to our house.

“He’s fine,” I assured him. “Really fine, he’s had to make a few changes to his lifestyle but other than that he’s just the same Dad.”

Hugo nodded, though he still looked worried. I opened the door and led us in. Mum and Dad were sitting in the conservatory, Mum reading a huge book in Runes and Dad flicking through Aunt Ginny’s column in the Daily Prophet.

“Hugo!” Said Mum, jumping up when she saw us. Dad shot out of his seat too, the pair of them rushing over to Hugh and hugging him. “Oh I missed you my baby boy!” Mum gushed, kissing him on the cheek.

“Mum, get off!” He laughed, turning to Dad. “Hi Dad,” He smiled, hugging him. “Are you okay?”

“Fit as a fiddle,” Said Dad, ruffling Hugo’s hair.

“Oh, I can’t believe all four of us are home together again,” Said Mum, beaming at us. “It’s just like when you two were kids.”

“Well come on then, Dad,” I said. “Whip us up some lunch!”

He laughed and went off into the kitchen. I chatted to Mum and Hugo for a while and then went in after him to help. He was standing at the counter, cutting up some salad. I took a knife from the drawer and started slicing tomatoes next to him.

“So how was Lily?” He asked me.

“She’s good,” I said. “She was ready for sorting James and Albus as soon as she got home,” I informed him.

Dad laughed. “There’s a surprise; that girl gets more like Ginny every day. It’s a good thing too, someone needs to sort them out; Harry and Ginny are at the end of their tether.”

“I know,” I nodded. “But understandably.”

Dad shook his head. “Nothing should come between a family, nothing. Believe me I know.”

I smiled, and changed the subject. “So, have you dusted off your old suit from the fifteen-hundreds?” I teased, elbowing him.

“Very funny,” He muttered. “I think I’ll just go as I am actually, you know, jeans and t-shirt.”

“I don’t think so,” I laughed.

“We’re really happy for you Rose,” He told me. “You’ve made us so proud; your life has been such a success.”

“Thanks Dad,” I said, smiling up at him. “But stop it now! You’re going to make me cry, and it’ll be bad enough when you give me away.”

“I know,” He agreed. “I’ll be packing some Kleenex just in case,” He told me. “And that’s just for me.”

I laughed and he grinned at me. “But you know I could never truly give you away,” He said. “To me you’ll always be my baby girl.”

“You know, I don’t know when you got so soppy,” I joked. “But thanks Dad. I love you.”

“I love you too, Rosie.”

We ate lunch in the garden, as it was so sunny outside. This really was freak weather for Britain; our summer had lasted months and here we were, into October, and I was still going out without a jacket.

It really did feel as though Hugo and I were kids again; Mum telling us off for swearing, Dad making really bad jokes. I felt a little sad, as if I was letting go of that part of my life, though Mum assured me these were the kind of nerves everyone experienced before they got married.

I had owled Mark to let him know where we were, and he came round to join us on his lunch hour, chatting to Hugo and the like. We were all sitting comfortably, having enjoyed Dad’s lunch, when Mum noticed an owl swooping down behind me.

“Rose that must be for you!” Said Mum, pointing at the unfamiliar owl. I untied the letter from the owl and stroked its feathery head, before it flew off.

“Who is it from?” Asked Dad, as I opened it.

“I don’t know,” I muttered, squinting my eyes to see it; the sun was directly above me, obscuring my vision.

Rose,

I’m sorry for going off the way I did, I needed to think. I know you don’t like me very much right now, but I need to ask for a favour from you – I need you to give a message to James and Albus.

I have been pondering over what to do about the baby for so long, and for a while I was certain about an abortion; I even went to the Muggle clinic, but I couldn’t go through with it. I just kept thinking about Allie and how beautiful and smart she is, and what would have happened if Megan hadn’t had her; how could someone do that to an innocent baby?

I was almost sure I was going to keep it, when the decision was made for me; I’ve lost the baby. I had a miscarriage, and now I understand – it’s like karma, isn’t it? I did a bad thing by sleeping with James, so it was decided that I didn’t deserve to bring a baby into the world.

I’m going back to Portugal and I was hoping you would tell James and Albus. I know it’s asking an awful lot but I can’t come back and they shouldn’t be told this by a letter. I know they would want to hear it from you.

Tell them their relationship is more important than any woman who comes into their life; they are brothers and they should be there for one another. I know it’s hard, but tell them they must forgive each other, even if they can’t forgive me.

Thank you so much Rose, for the support you showed me even though you disapproved of my actions; it meant so much to me to not have to be alone during the difficult time of having to tell James. I hope your wedding is a wonderful day and you have a happy life, maybe one day I will find some of the happiness you share with Mark.

I’ll miss you,

Beth

I stared at the letter, stunned. My hands shook as Mark asked me what it was.

“It’s from Beth,” I muttered. “She’s gone and she’s…” I glanced at Mum. “She’s had a miscarriage.”

“Shit,” Said Hugo, uncomfortably.

“Language, Hugo,” whispered Mum. “That poor girl.”

“Where has she gone?” Asked Mark.

“Back to Portugal,” I said, handing him the letter. “She’s asked me to tell James and Al what’s happened and that she’s left.”

“Bloody hell,” Said Dad. “Well maybe it’s for the best…”

For the best?” I exclaimed. “Dad, that baby was my cousin! And your niece or nephew!” I told him. “I mean once removed or something like that, but it was a part of our family – it was James’ child!”

“I know,” Dad said. “But look at what that pregnancy has done to James and Al,”

I shrugged. “I really don’t think this was the best outcome,” I said, quietly.

“Are you going to tell them?” Asked Mark, looking up from Beth’s letter.

“I don’t know…I suppose I have to, don’t I?” I asked them.

“I think so,” Said Mum. “James, more than anyone, needs to know the truth.”

I sighed. “And here I was hoping my last few days as a Weasley were going to be relaxed and drama-free…as if.”

I’d really had enough of going round to Harry and Ginny’s to tell their sons bad news. Harry let me in, and rather than giving me his normal friendly greeting and asking what was up, he sighed and let me in. He probably saw something in my face and knew what was coming.

Mark, Hugo and Mum had all offered to come with me (Dad on the other hand wanted nothing to do with the drama) but I told them I was going alone. By any means it gave Mum and Dad some quality time with their future son-in-law, and Hugo his brother-in-law.

“You know Rose,” Said Uncle Harry, as I entered. “I really hope whatever it is, it’s going to knock some sense into them; I can’t bear it anymore.”

“I know,” I said, sadly. “I don’t know what this news is going to do, Uncle Harry,” I admitted. “But I want them to make up too.”

“Well I’ve told them I don’t care how angry they are at each other; they will not ruin your wedding with their childish antics.”

“Thanks,” I smiled. “Where are they?”

“Al is in his room, James in the kitchen – where else? Shall I get him?”

“Yeah if you don’t mind,” I said. “I need to speak to both of them so I might as well do it together.”

Harry went and fetched James, who met me in the hallway looking wary. “What is it?” He asked me, fearfully. “I can’t take anymore surprises – just tell me I’ve not got someone else pregnant.”

I laughed sadly. “No, you haven’t,” I assured him. “Come on,” I said, taking his hand. I led him up to Al’s room and knocked on the door lightly.

“Come in,” He said. He looked up from his desk as we entered, and frowned. “Oh, hi.”

“Hey Al,” I sighed. “What you doing?”

He gestured to his notes. “Antidotes,” He said. “I kept forgetting them last night.”

“Oh,” I said, simply. “Well I need to tell you both something, and I really wish I didn’t have to because…well it’s awful.”

Al straightened up in his chair and James watched me silently.

“I got a letter from Beth,” I said. “And basically she’s gone back to Portugal.”

James’ eyes widened and he stared at me in confusion, while Al’s face was unreadable.

“What about – what…” James muttered, his eyes pleading.

I sighed. “I’m really sorry I have to tell you this James,” I whispered. “She’s lost the baby – it’s gone.”

James’ face paled as I heard a harsh intake of breath from Albus. I glanced at Al, and saw him staring at his brother. I went over to James and put a hand on his shoulder.

“I’m sorry,” I said. I took the letter out of my pocket and handed to James, who took it silently. He read it for a few seconds, before putting in front of Al on his desk. Al glanced at James once more, before bending over to read it.

James looked at me, and he was not tearful, nor did he seem angry; all I could see was shock and sadness. “I know it was a mess,” He said in a low voice. “But that…that was my kid, you know?”

“I know,” I whispered, “And I’m so sorry for that; because among all the stress and hurt, that baby was a part of our family and we all would have loved it.” I said, my eyes flicking to Al who was watching us sadly.

I raised my eyebrows as Albus got out of the chair and walked over to us, nodding. “All of us,” He agreed, putting his arm around his brother.

I smiled at them, feeling so proud of Albus. I hadn’t known which way this was going to go; it could either reunite them or tear them further apart. But in this moment I knew that James and Al were going to be okay.

“I’m going to get going then,” I said quietly. “I know this is hard for both of you but…well I need both of you there on Saturday; it wouldn’t be my wedding day without my two favourite cousins.”

James smiled. “Yeah we’ll be there Rose, of course we will.”

“We wouldn’t miss it.” Al added. “Can’t wait to see you make an arse of yourself while trying to walk down the aisle gracefully.”

I shook my head, grinning at them. “Then I’ll see you both on Saturday.”

*

I went around to Megan’s on the way home, to see Allie more than anything else. I hadn’t seen my goddaughter all week what with all the last-minute planning for the wedding.

She let me in herself, which I found pretty odd considering the four-year-old wasn’t allowed to answer the door to anyone.

“Allie,” I said, frowning. “Why did you answer the-”

“Allison Rose Finnegan!” Yelled the voice of Megan, thundering down the stairs. She ran down and managed a smile for me before glaring down at her daughter. I stepped into the house and Megan pulled her by the hand into their living room, Allie grinning happily all the while.

Megan bent down onto her knees so she and Allie were eye level, and spoke in a stern voice. “Allison, how dare you answer the door? When I specifically told you not to!” She glanced over at me. “I was in the bathroom,” She informed me.

“Oh,” I said, quietly, preferring not to get involved in the disciplining.

“But Mummy it was only Aunt Rose!” Said Allie in a relax Mum voice I had often used through the years. She even rolled her eyes.

“You didn’t know it was Aunt Rose until you opened the door!” Said Megan, angrily. “Now what if that had been a bad person coming to take you away from me and Daddy?”

Allie looked upset. “But it wasn’t,” She said in a small voice.

“But it might have been,” Insisted Megan. “Allie you are the most important thing in Mummy’s life and I couldn’t bear it if I lost you! You must never do that again, do you understand?”

Allie nodded, her bottom lip quivering.

Megan sighed. “Oh come here, you drama queen,” She muttered, picking her daughter up into her arms.

“Sorry about that Rose,” She said, winking at me. “Allie?”

“Sorry Aunt Rose,” She mumbled.

“That’s okay,” I laughed. “I just dropped into see you guys, I know I’ll see you both tomorrow night at my Mum and Dad’s, but anyway.”

“Allie, will you please go upstairs and wash your hands?” Said Megan. “Your dinner’s nearly ready.”

Allie nodded and skipped out of the room, leaving us alone.

“A bad person?” I asked, laughing.

Megan grinned. “I’m trying to scare her so she won’t answer the door! Stevie and I have ordered her a new bike and it’s supposed to get delivered this week so the pair of us are on edge every time the door goes! And then she keeps trying to answer the door!”

I laughed. “So all that is just so she doesn’t find out she’s getting a new bike?”

“Yes,” Laughed Megan. “It’s pink and the handlebars are glittery.”

“Right,” I said, shaking my head in amusement. “So you know the plans for tomorrow, yes?”

“Run it by me once more,” She advised. “Just to be safe.”

I rolled my eyes. “Okay, I’m mostly likely sleeping late tomorrow morning and spending the afternoon with Mark just relaxing. I’m leaving the flat at five to go to my Mum and Dad’s, so you, Allie, Dom, Roxy and Lily can just head over there anytime after then. Mum is making a big meal for us all so we’re nice and energised for the next day. We will make sure we’ve got everything we need for the morning then all head to bed; as far as I’m aware sleeping arrangements have been taken care of. With me so far?”

Megan nodded. “One bride, one flower girl and four bridesmaids all under one roof,” She said. “Your parents and Hugo are in for a treat!”

I laughed. “So then we just get up on Saturday morning, we all get ready, we head over to the Burrow for eleven and the service is at half past. And that’s it; I become Mrs Rose Oliver and you can all finally breathe a sigh of relief that the months of planning and stress are over!”

“Okay,” She said. “That’s it.”

“Anyways I have to go,” I said, glancing at my watch. “Mark is bringing in dinner and we’re having a cosy night in – our last night together before the wedding, you know,”

“Yes,” She smiled. “This will be your last night of exciting sex; after you’re married it’s really boring!”

“Shut up!” I laughed. “What about the honeymoon?”

“Oh well yeah the honeymoon is brilliant,” She admitted. “But after that it all goes down the pan…” She grinned at me.

“You’re hilarious,” I said. “I’ll see you both tomorrow at my parents’. Bye Allie!” I shouted up to my goddaughter.

I listened for her shouting back, but instead I heard her running down the stairs. She flew at me and hugged my legs tightly. “I’ll see you tomorrow night, Allie,” I said, ruffling her hair.

“I know!” She said. “I can’t wait to wear my dress!”

I laughed. “I know you’ve been telling me for months! And I can’t wait to wear my dress,” I told her.

Megan smiled at us as I pushed her towards my Mum. “See you tomorrow night,” I said, smiling. I apparated home, too excited and jittery to notice the strange way Megan looked at me as I left.

*

Megan

I’d left Allie with Steven. I saw it in his eyes when I told him where I was going; he knew what I was up to; or at least he had a rough idea, but he let me go without a fuss. That was one of the amazing things about my husband; he never questioned my actions when it came to the people I loved. Even when he should, like now.

I had been here only once before in my life, and it had not been a pleasant visit. I’d only wanted to say my piece and be done with it; much like I did tonight. I knocked the door nervously, hoping he would answer. Of course, he didn’t.

His father frowned at me, his pale, pointed face displaying his surprise. “Megan is it?” He asked me. “You’re a friend of Scorpius, aren’t you?”

“Yes I am,” I answered. “Is he here? I need to talk to him.”

“He is,” He said, standing aside to let me in. “Second floor, third door on the left.”

I nodded. Draco Malfoy seemed like the type that didn’t linger on awkward conversation – good. That was what I needed right now, before I bottled out. I took deep breaths as I climbed the stairs.

I wasn’t like Rose, I wasn’t subtle and I never said the right thing. I’d always been too forward and to the point, though Stevie always said he loved that about me. I’d tried to be more tactful in recent years, to set a good example to my daughter, but the truth was I could never keep my mouth shut when I felt strongly enough about something.

I didn’t knock, which in hindsight was probably a bad move considering I might have walked in on him naked or something. Not that it would have bothered him or me much; in fact I was pretty sure I’d seen Scorpius Malfoy naked at some point in my near twenty two years.

Thankfully, he wasn’t naked. Instead, he was lying on his bed, throwing a quaffle up and down in the air. Probably feeling sorry for himself, considering the woman he loved was marrying someone else in two days.

“Megs,” He said, sitting up as I rudely walked in. “What’s up?”

“Did you mean it?” I asked him, staring at him.

“Did I what?” He asked, frowning.

“Did you mean it?” I repeated. “Four and a half years ago, when I was leaving Hogwarts, you told me you loved Rose more than anything in the world, and you would do for as long as you lived.” I said, sitting down on the bed beside him. “Did you mean it?”

Scorpius stared at me, his grey, cloudy eyes piercing me intensely. “Yes,” He said, finally. “Yes I meant it.”

“Okay,” I said, quietly. I put a hand each on his shoulders and spoke clearly and calmly. “Then what are you going to do about it?”

He shook his head. “What can I do?” He said. “I blew it, Megan. Rose wants nothing to do with me.”

I sighed. “I won’t tell you what to do; I won’t. All I will tell you is this; Rose isn’t a hundred percent sure about marrying Mark.”

“Are you serious?” He whispered.

“Do I look like I’m joking Scorpius?”

He put his head in his hands and groaned. “Why are you doing this Megan? Why?”

“Because I want her to be happy,” I said simply.

“But…Mark…”

“She loves Mark,” I said. “She really does. But you, Scorpius, you are something more to her. It’s like magnets, I think; she just can’t stop loving you.” I sighed. “Of course it would be a lot easier if she knew this herself.”

I sighed and got up. “Look it’s none of my business; but I’m scared for her. I’m scared she’s about to make a really big mistake.”

Scorpius nodded, getting up too. “I’m not letting her go Megan; I’ve made that mistake too many times – not this time.”

“Okay then,” I said, giving him a meaningful look.

“So…I’ll see you at the wedding?” He muttered, quietly.

“I guess so,” I said, pulling out my wand to apparate. “And Scorpius?”

“Yeah?”

“If you break her heart again I will break your face.”

He nodded. “Got it.” 



*

A/N What are you thinking my beautiful readers? Things are getting interesting? Yes? I want to know whatever you think - especially how you felt about the switch in POV - did it annoy you? Did you like it? Next chapter is the big day, I hope you are as excited as I am, as always drama is promised! Until then! xxx

Chapter 12: This Is The Day
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Hey people! Okay I switch to Scorp POV about three quarters down, just to forewarn you as it isn't actually pointed out! Enjoy!

*

“Tell me a secret,” I said quietly, stroking his hair.

“I don’t have any secrets from you,” He replied, running his lips along my arm. “You know everything there is to know.”

“There must be something,” I said, smiling. “I like secrets; nice secrets.”

“Nice secrets?” He laughed. “Right…” He looked up at the ceiling, his face thoughtful. I rolled along the bed so I was even closer to him.

“I’ll love you forever,” He said. “That’s the problem.”

“That’s not a problem,” I said, kissing his neck. “It’s amazing.”

“Only until you stop loving me,” He muttered. “Then it’ll be horrible.”

“I’ll never stop loving you,” I told him. “I’ve loved you since I was eleven; I’m hardly going to stop now, am I?”

He smiled, and stroked my hair gently. “You’ll never know how happy you make me…”

I shot upright in bed, panting for breath, my chest rising and falling and my cheeks flushed. I closed my eyes and shook my head in disbelief, before opening them again and pulling my watch from the bedside cabinet. It was 8.40; Mum would be coming to waken me any minute.

I swung my legs around the bed and stood up slowly, still breathing quickly. That was ridiculous; absolutely ridiculous. Why did I have to dream of Scorpius today, of all days? I didn’t even remember having that conversation with him now; it had been just around the time we’d moved into the flat, one Sunday morning.

I pulled on my dressing gown, shaking my head. I had to stop this. I pulled the image of Mark’s smiling, handsome face to the forefront of my mind and smiled. Today was about Mark and me; not Scorpius.

“Good morning bride-to-be!” Called my Mum as I entered the kitchen. “I was just about to come and waken you; everyone else apart from Hugo is up, they’re all in the dining room having breakfast.” She came over to me and gave me a warm hug. “I can’t believe you’re getting married today, sweetheart.” She said, quietly.

“Me neither,” I admitted, smiling.

“Will you do me a favour and go and wake your brother please?” She asked me, returning to the muffins she was laying out. “I’ll put out some breakfast for you both.”

“Okay,” I said, walking back out of the kitchen. I climbed back upstairs and entered my brother’s bedroom, where he was sleeping soundly. I crept over to the bed and knelt on it, and shook him lightly.

“Hugh,” I whispered. “Wake up.”

He groaned, scrunching his eyes shut against the light for a second, before opening them and smiling at me. “Happy wedding day,” He murmured sleepily.

“Thanks,” I said, smiling. He frowned and put his hand on my shoulder.

“What’s wrong?” He asked me. “What’s up?”

“Nothing,” I laughed. “What are you on about?”

“You look like there’s something bothering you,” He said. “Come on Rosie, we have the same eyes it’s pretty easy to tell.” He moved over to the other side of the bed and sat up. “Talk to me.”

“It’s nothing…” I insisted. “I just – Hugo I had a dream about Scorpius.”

His eyes bulged in surprise. “Scorpius? Why?”

I laughed. “I wish I knew. What do you think that’s all about?”

Hugo shrugged. “You’re probably just nervous; maybe when you get married you think about all your old relationships, wondering if things might have been different. Don’t worry; it’ll be fine.” He assured me, putting his arm around me.

“Thanks little brother,” I smiled. “I wish you were here more often, you know.”

“That could be arranged,” He said, raising his eyebrows.

“What does that mean?” I demanded, frowning at him. “You’re at school!”

He sighed. “Who needs Hogwarts anyway?” He said, shaking his head. “Another nine months at Hogwarts is not going to help me make it with my band.”

I rolled my eyes at him. “You better give this some serious thought,” I told him. “What’s another nine months; you managed six and a half years! Mum would be crushed if you dropped out Hugo,”

“She did it!” He said, petulantly.

I raised my eyebrows at him, and he looked guilty. “As if she or Dad had a choice!” I said, sarcastically.

Hugo laughed, opening his mouth to reply, when his room door was slammed open and Dominique stormed in angrily.

“What the hell are you two doing?” She yelled.

“Talking?” Shrugged Hugo, as we both laughed.

“Oh!” Said Dom, raising her eyebrows. “Well when you’re quite finished having a cosy little catch-up there is, you know, the small matter of Rose’s wedding in two hours!”

“Dominique please stop shouting,” I said. “We’re just coming and-”

“MOVE IT!” She shouted, storming out again.

Hugo shook his head at me. “This family is insane,” He muttered, getting out of the bed. “Poor Mark doesn’t have the faintest idea what he’s marrying into.”

An hour later, I was sitting in my childhood bedroom, at the dressing table I’d grown up getting ready at. So many times as a child I’d sneaked some of Mum’s make-up and played with it, ending up looking ridiculous but thinking I was beautiful. I smiled down at my god-daughter, who was sitting on the floor smearing my lipstick across her lips and cheeks, her long, chocolate brown hair piled into a dozen thick, purple rollers.

“Allie if you make a mess of your hair your Mum will kill you,” I told her grinning.

“Do I look pretty Aunt Rose?” She asked me, pouting with her glossy pink lips.

“Yes, you always do,” I told her

“Right come on up,” Laughed Megan, pulling her up. “Do you want to help me do Aunt Rose’s make-up?” She asked Allie, smiling.

“Aren’t we going like this?” She asked, pointing to the rollers piled atop our three heads. “I like my hair like this.”

Megan and I smiled at each other. “They’re going to make your hair all pretty and curly, Allie; you’re going to love it.”

Allie climbed up onto the dresser so she was sitting in front of me, and brushed her finger to my cheek, rubbing the pinky blusher into my skin.

“Mummy,” She said, as Megan mixed eye-make up on her hand.

“Yes?” She said, reaching over for a creamy eye shadow.

“Was the day you married my Daddy the happiest day of your life?”

I looked up at her and she grinned. “No, it wasn’t Allie.”

“What was?” She asked, frowning.

“The best day of my life was the day of my sixth year Transfiguration exam,” She said, as I smiled, remembering the day as if it were yesterday.

“What happened on that day?”

“Oh many things,” Said Megan, laughing. “Let’s see; I ate breakfast, I talked to Aunt Rose, I did my exam and…oh what am I forgetting Rose?”

I grinned. “I think we all met somebody that day,” I said. “But I can’t remember who.”

Megan gasped in mock-surprise and covered her mouth with her hands. “That’s it! That was the day you came along, Allie!”

Allie’s eyes widened in excitement. “Really?” She exclaimed. “And that’s your favourite day?”

Megan smiled at her daughter. “Yes, it was the best day of my life,”

“So what was your best day ever Aunt Rose?” Allie asked me. “Is it today?”

I smiled at her. “I’ll let you know tomorrow, Allie.”

Mum came in at this point, all ready and looking really quite lovely. “Megan,” She said politely. “That’s us all about ready, do you want me to take Allie and help her into her dress?”

“Oh yeah, thanks Mrs Weasley,” She said, smiling at Mum. “Allie, why don’t you go with Auntie Hermione to get your dress on?”

Allie’s face lit up. “I get to wear it now?”

I laughed. “Yeah, it’s time!”

Mum took Allie downstairs to get dressed while Megan and I perfected the finishing touches to my make-up. I was just checking my reflection in the mirror, when Dom appeared at the door, carrying mine and Megan’s dresses over her arm. She was already dressed in hers, and her Veela genes seemed to shine brighter today than ever; she was a vision.

“I’m leaving while you put it on,” She said, grinning. “I want the full effect when you come downstairs.”

Megan changed into her dress first, wearing her own design beautifully. She fixed her hair and straightened the dress, before helping me get into mine. This was more complicated; the dress had tiny little buttons all the way up the back, but the fact that Megan had designed it came as an advantage when trying to get it on without ruining my hair or make-up.

I eased my arms through the holes and pulled it down onto my waist, while Megan fastened it for me. The dress was ivory; I wasn’t going to where a white dress, it didn’t seem right. It was made of a soft, delicate silk that Megan had looked for months ago, sitting off-the-shoulder and floating down into a simple, stylish gown.

I removed the rollers from my hair and together we carefully pulled thick curls up loosely, giving me a very natural-looking hairstyle. I finally slipped my feet into the ivory coloured, satin heels and Megan sat the beautiful, goblin-made tiara which had belonged to my Great-Great Auntie Muriel once upon a time onto my head.

She took a step back and looked at me, smiling. “You look beautiful,” She said, thickly. “Really beautiful.”

“Really?” I asked, turning to look in the mirror. I smiled. I actually did look quite nice; I suppose that was the result of an hour and a half of beautifying.

“Okay,” I said. “Are you ready?”

“Just about,” She said. She took both my hands in hers, she looked kind of nervous. “You know I love you. And I want you to be happy in your life.”

“I know,” I said, laughing. “But we need to get going.”

Megan nodded nervously. “I think…I think I might have done something and-”

There was a loud knock at the door, followed by the voice of my father. “Rosie?” He called. “We need to get going, that’s the cars here.”

“Okay!” I said, opening the door to him. His face lit up in admiration as I met him.

“Oh my baby girl,” He said, grinning. “You are so beautiful, Rosie.”

“Thanks Dad,” I grinned. “Come on!” I said to Megan, grabbing her hand. Looking slightly panic-stricken, she followed.

*

We all arrived at The Burrow twenty minutes later, and I was relieved to see the good weather was lasting. The decision to get married at The Burrow had been an easy one; it was somewhere that was filled with memories for me; I had spent half my childhood here, playing with all of my cousins; my parents had gotten married here, as had Uncle Bill and Aunt Fleur, and probably more. It was the perfect setting.

Myself and the five bridesmaids all waited in the kitchen with Dad, waiting for the cue to come and begin the ceremony. I was sitting at the table, jiggling my foot quickly out of nerves. I kept thinking about much of a big decision this was, how life-changing it was; but as before I brought the face of Mark to my mind’s eye, letting the feeling of him calm me.

Mum popped in while everybody took their seats outside, mine and Mark’s family in the front two rows. My parents friend, and old Minister of Magic Kingsley Shacklebolt was performing the ceremony as a special favour; I’d met him a handful of times but he always seemed nice and Mum and Dad spoke very highly about him; apparently he had been a very active member of the Order of Phoenix.

“Hi girls,” Said Mum as she came in. “I was wondering if Ron and I could talk to Rose for a second; everyone is about ready to start.”

“Of course,” Said Lily, smiling and offering Mum her seat. “We’ll wait outside, won’t we?” She said, looking around at Megan, Dom, Roxy and Allie.

“Thanks guys,” I said, grinning around at them.

“Actually Rose could I just have a quick word?” Asked Megan, looking worried.

I frowned at her. “Megs, can’t it wait? We really don’t have time,”

Megan bit her lip as she was ushered out by Dom. “I don’t-”

“Come on Mummy!” Said Allie cheerfully, pulling on her hand.

They all bustled out, holding their flowers out of the way of being bashed, Allie shouting excitedly, Megan still looking that odd, nervous way. I shook my head; she was probably just jittery for me.

Mum smiled at me, tears welling up in her eyes. “I can’t believe this day has come already,”

“We just wanted to let you know how proud we are,” Said Dad, putting his arm around Mum. “And we’re so happy for you.”

“Thank you,” I said, shakily. I was an emotional wreck today. “Have either of you seen Mark?”

“I talked to him just there,” Said Mum, smiling. “He’s a little nervous, but he can’t wait.”

“We have something for you,” Said Dad, pulling a box-shaped gift out of his pocket. “It’s just a little thing, you know…”

I took it from him, and unwrapped the box from its pale-blue tissue paper. I prised open the familiar-looking brown leather box and gasped.

“We were going to buy you something new,” Mum explained. “But we figured you would prefer something a little more sentimental.”

I nodded, stunned. It was the pearl necklace Dad had given Mum for their tenth wedding anniversary. I smiled, pressing my fingers to the smooth, shiny pearls.

“We were thinking you might want to wear it today,” Dad suggested.

I nodded, smiling at them. I carefully took the necklace from the box and Dad got out of his seat, taking it from me. He fastened the catch on the necklace and Mum grinned.


“Perfect,” She said. She glanced at her watch and sighed. “Well that’s it. It’s time; our baby is getting married.”

“Stop it,” I said, trying to hold back the tears. I got up and hugged Mum tightly. “I love you,” I whispered. “Both of you,” I added, turning to hug Dad too. “Okay come on, let’s get me married!”

Mum slipped into her seat in the front row, as Dad and I met the bridesmaids at the top of the aisle. I looked down and saw Mark and Albus standing there; they were both looking so handsome; Al grinning, Mark smiling nervously.

Dominique grinned excitedly at me and took my hands. “This is so exciting Rose!”

“I know,” I said, smiling. The harpists began to play slow, calm music which matched the lazy, sunny feeling of today.

“Okay we’re up!” Said Megan, looking resigned. She organised everyone into order and they began a slow, graceful march.

Allie went first, looking adorable in her little white dress with the ribbon which matched the bridesmaids pewter dresses. She scattered little white petals along the aisle as she carefully walked down the way Stevie had shown her this morning. All of the guests watched her, smiling at how unbelievably cute she was.

Roxy went next, followed by Lily, then Dominique. Finally it was Megan’s time to go. She turned to me and took my hand shakily.

“Rose, are you absolutely sure about this?” She asked me.

I nodded. “I am,” I assured her, smiling.

“Megan you have to go!” Said Dad, looking past us to the aisle, which Dom was already half-way down. Megan hurried down so she was in her place; Allie went to sit in the second row with Steven as the bridesmaids stood at the bride’s side of the little white wedding arch.

The music changed subtly as Dad and I linked arms and began to walk slowly down, butterflies fluttering in my stomach. I smiled at the guests and at Mark, who was watching me with an awed expression.

As we walked, I saw everything in my life so far flash by, causing me to have to suppress a laugh. Here was me thinking your life flashed before your eyes before you died not before you got married.

I saw everything; Hugo and I playing in the garden at home, running wild with all the cousins in The Burrow, the time we had gone on holiday with the Potters, and then starting Hogwarts.

Everything from Hogwarts; Albus going into Slytherin, all the classes, becoming friends with Megan, sharing the dorm with the girls, Beth going out with Albus, my Mum’s tragic pregnancy, Carson and all that drama with Dom, Megan having Allie, leaving Hogwarts, becoming a Healer…

And Scorpius. Finally and obviously Scorpius. Thinking about him made me feel exhausted.

Finally, we were at the altar and I smiled encouragingly at Mark, who nodded at me shakily. Dad pressed his lips to my cheek, before going to take his seat beside Mum and Hugo. I stepped up next to Mark, rolling my eyes as Al gave me the thumbs up from behind him. Mark took my hands in his and smiled.

Now I was ready.

*

I slipped into a seat at the back row, my heart hammering against my chest and my head dizzy as she walked down the aisle.

She was mesmerising. I knew she would be, I’d always known Rose would be the most beautiful bride the world would ever see; but I hadn’t been prepared for this. And I hadn’t been prepared for the way watching her walk down the aisle to someone else would make me feel.

What the fuck was I doing here? Breaking up the wedding? Doing nothing and watching her marry him? I looked up to the altar and saw Megan’s eyes meet mine. She looked anguished. Her eyes were pleading as she shook her head minutely.

So what she’d changed her mind? It was too late; I was here. But then I could just sit here quietly and then leave as everyone stood up. Nobody would ever know but Megan; I could leave and allow Rose and Mark to be happy.

But could I leave? Could I let her go through with it?

Rose would leave, if it were the other way around. If I was getting married, she would stay away and make it easy for me. But I wasn’t as strong as Rose; I’d never been as strong as Rose – that was why I’d left the last time.

I sighed, my breathing increasing rapidly. I felt as if I could faint. Fuck. I didn’t know what I was doing as I got to my feet; like I had left my body and I had no control over it. But then, that was the way Rose had always made me feel; completely out of control. And I couldn’t let her marry Mark. I might have screwed things up but now I knew.

Rose Weasley was my destiny.

I cleared my throat and spoke a lot calmer than I felt. She was at the altar now, holding hands with Mark, smiling away.

“Stop,” I called out, looking only at her. “You can’t do this.”

*

I whipped around, not wondering who it was, of course I knew, but to see where he was. He was standing in the very back row, his stance tense as he looked at me with unreadable eyes. Time seemed to stand still as I stared back at him, until I tore my eyes away from him and back to Mark. Mark wasn’t looking at me; he was staring back at Scorpius, looking livid.

Was this really happening? I started breathing so fast and heavy I thought I would hyperventilate, as I looked at the ground, still holding onto Mark’s hands.

Suddenly, time started again. There were loud murmurs from the guests, gasps of shock from my bridesmaids, angry outbursts from mine and Mark’s family. Dad stood up too, glaring at Scorpius.

“Get out of here Malfoy,” He commanded, furiously. “Nobody wants you here. Leave.”

I pulled my gaze back up to Mark, who was finally looking at me. Scorpius stepped out from the row of seats, ignoring the stares from affronted guests, and walked up to the altar so he was facing us. And then he spoke again.

“I’m going nowhere,” He said, calmly. “Until she tells me that she doesn’t love me.”

“Jesus Christ!” Exclaimed Dom, in a shocked voice. “Scorpius this is her wedding day!”

I clapped a hand to my mouth as tears brimmed over my eyes, streaming down my cheeks. Mark was frozen as he watched me.

“Shall I continue?” Said Kingsley, awkwardly.

I looked back over at Scorpius, and felt anger boiling up inside me. Who did he think he was? Crashing my wedding, creating a scene like this, when I’d made my feelings abundantly clear.

“Go,” I said quietly. “Now.”

He shook his head, as stubborn as he’d always been. “Not until you tell me you don’t love me,” He said again.

“Scorp, mate,” Said Al, hastily. “Just get out of here, she’s told you to leave.”

Scorpius did not look anywhere but at me, and I at him. “I know you love Mark,” He said, in a gentle voice. “But we’re soul mates, Rose, everybody says it. And I know I screwed up before, and I won’t stand here and promise you that I won’t screw up again because I do it all the time.”

“Scorpius,” I whispered, shaking my head.

“He’s everything you should want,” He continued, glancing at Mark, who was shaking with anger. “He’s stable, reliable; the perfect man for you. But you never wanted perfect Rose – I know I’m screwed up and you know what? So are you. I’m not afraid to tell you that you’re moody, and crazy and irrational and at times you can be a right bitch-”

“That’s enough!” Said Dad, glaring at him. Mum pulled at his arm, trying to get him back into his seat, her own face glazed with tears.

“But it’s true!” He said, still staring at me. “And you don’t care that I say those things to you, I know you don’t because you’d say them right back and we’d both know it’s true.” He shook his head and shrugged. “I’m a screw-up; you can’t rely on me, and ninety-nine percent of the time I’m an arrogant arsehole.”

“Scorpius,” I repeated, tearfully. “Please.”

“But you love me all the same; you don’t even love me in spite of it. You love all those parts of me that you shouldn’t love Rose, because it was written in our destiny long before either of us met.”

“Stop it Scorpius!” Said Dominique, angrily.

“And Mark can offer you the world,” He continued, shrugging again. “All I have to offer is the fact that I know nobody could ever love you as much as I do. So what’s it going to be, Weasley?”

I closed my eyes and breathed in deeply through my nose, trying to stop crying. I felt as though my heart was going to hammer out of my chest, and stop completely, simultaneously.

“I would like you to leave,” I said. “I love Mark, and we are getting married.”

I turned back to Mark, and gasped. He was looking at me as if he’d never seen me before. I frowned at him questioningly, begging that he wouldn’t say the words I knew he would.

“He’s right.”

Mark,” I whispered. “No, he’s-”

“Don’t deny it,” He said, looking up at me. “You love me, but you love him more, don’t you?”

I shook my head at him, too tearful to speak. This couldn’t be happening.

Mark shrugged, his expression devastated. “I never had a shot in hell; as soon as he came back…you were his. You were always his you just…you settled for me.”

“No!” I insisted. “Mark I didn’t settle for you, I love you!”

“I can’t do this here,” He said, shaking his head. “I can’t…” He looked around at all the guests, the colour draining from his face.

Megan stepped forward and spoke quietly to Kingsley. “They need a moment in private to talk,” She said, looking at us. “I’ll deal with this, just go inside and talk about this.” She reached into the artfully designed pocket in the side of her dress and took out my wand, and pressed it into my hand.

I was not able to prevent the tears streaming down my face as I grasped hands with Mark and apparated, away from everyone, away from Scorpius, to the kitchen of the Burrow. As soon as we landed on the solid floor, Mark let go of my hand.

“You can’t listen to it,” I told him at once. “Mark I love you.”

He was shaking his head sadly as he sat down. “It’s my fault; you didn’t want to get married, I should have known it was because you still loved him…”

“Stop it!” I cried. “I didn’t say yes because I was settling for you! I love you Mark! You’ve made me so happy, and I never thought I would be happy again when-”

“When he left you?” Mark asked. “You see? There we are; back at Scorpius. Do you know Rose, for the last month all you have talked about is Scorpius? Scorpius and your Dad and Al and Beth and James!”

“Oh I’m sorry my Dad had a heart attack and my cousins fell out over my pregnant school-friend,” I said sarcastically. “I’m sure they didn’t mean to inconvenience you!”

“That’s not what I mean,” He said. “You haven’t once asked me about my life in the last month…I bet you didn’t know that my Mum broke her leg? Or that Robbie has a new girlfriend?”

What?” I exclaimed, in shock. “Why didn’t you tell me?”

“You never want to hear it Rose!” He shouted. “All you care about is your life and your friends and your family – I’m sorry I don’t know them all as well as Scorpius fucking Malfoy!”

“What does this have to do with anything?” I demanded, angrily. “Mark we shouldn’t even be talking about this right now and you certainly shouldn’t have been planning to marry me if you felt that way!”

Mark shrugged. “That’s the Rose Weasley I’ve always known. You know maybe he’s right…maybe you do belong with him, eh? Everyone else seems to think so.”

“No, Mark, no,” I cried, pulling him out of the chair and wrapping my arms around him. “They don’t think that, they don’t. Scorpius hurt me so much and I know you would never hurt me. And I’m sorry I’ve been so self-absorbed I promise I’ll work on it, just please…”

“I feel like I’m trying to keep this relationship together, but I’m doing it on my own,” He said shakily. “And it’s like I’m drowning Rose.”

“Because I love you!” He said. “And I couldn’t bear to break this because I want to be with you so much…but ever since he came back I’ve known that we were doomed. Because you love him, so much more than you love me. And now I see that its been right in front of me all this time and it just took that stunt he pulled to make me realise; you are destined to be with him, Rose.”

“What if I don’t want to be with him?” I asked, shaking my head. “What if I don’t want destiny? What if I want to choose you instead?”

Mark smiled sadly. “But that’s the thing about destiny Rose…no matter what, eventually your destiny will be played out. And there’s nothing I can do to stop it.”

He sighed, holding onto me as I held his shoulders. “I’ve been fighting a losing battle, trying to go up against the epic love story of Rose Weasley and Scorpius Malfoy…and the kicker is I’m the one who loses out.”

He extracted himself from me, tears welling up in his own eyes as he looked down at me sadly. I shook my head and grabbed his hand, refusing to let go. He pulled out his wand, his expression tragic and accepting.

“Mark, please,” I whispered.

“No,” He said, shaking his head. “I can’t do it Rose. I’m just another chapter in the story of Rose and Scorpius…and I’m done.”

He pulled his hand out of mine and disappeared with the familiar loud crack, leaving me standing in my grandmother’s kitchen.

I slid into his vacated chair and stared at the table.

Mark was gone, and here I was. Again.

*




A/N This chapter really shouldn't be finished here as there is many important things still to happen but I didn't want it any longer so alas here we go! I hope you liked it guys, I know it's a little sad, but is this perhaps the beginning to the show-down you've all been waiting for?? I hope so! The next chapter, I can exclusively reveal, will include more Mark/Rose AND Rose/Scorp (!) Thoughts? xxx

Chapter 13: Aftermath
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Holy moly - chapter 13 already! This story is flying by! I hope everyone enjoyed Chapter 12 with the wedding, it was qutie draining to write but I am pleased with it! I hope you enjoy this chapter; I know I promised some Rose/Scorp but things have been altered slighlty and he isn't in this chapter, however I promise you won't have to wait long! "Muggle quote" referenced to by Rose in this chapter is from Mahatma Ghandi! Enjoy!

*

“Rose?” Said my Mum quietly. I opened my eyes and saw her standing in the doorway, looking concerned. She came into my room and sat on the edge of the bed, stroking my hair.

“Was it a dream?” I whispered.

Mum shook her head sadly. “I’m sorry Rose. Are you okay?”

I shook my head. My throat felt scratchy from crying and my eyes sore and swollen. I moved over in the bed and Mum lay down beside me, putting her arms around me. I rested my head on her shoulder, wishing I could just stay here and never have to think about anything again.

After Mark left, Megan took care of everything with the guests and I went back to Mum and Dad’s with them. I had been in shock, not able to believe the mess I had made of things. It felt as though I was watching my life from the sidelines and I couldn’t believe what had happened.

“Do you want something to eat?” Asked Mum softly.

I shook my head and sat up. “I want to go and see Mark,” I said quietly. “I need to talk to him.”

Mum sighed. “We don’t know where he is, sweetheart,” She told me. “Albus went to find him after the…after he left. He wasn’t at the flat.”

“He’ll be at his brother’s,” I said, surely. “I’ll go and find him.”

“James checked there too, and at his parents,” She said. “He’s gone, Rose.”

I lay back down, tears brimming over my eyes. She looked at me sadly and wiped the tears away from my cheeks.

“I’m sorry,” I cried. “I’m sorry I’ve embarrassed you and Dad, I’m sorry I disappointed you.”

“Oh Rose,” She said tearfully. “We could never be embarrassed of you – we love you! And that’s just the kind of love a parent feels for their child sweetheart; it’s unconditional. It doesn’t matter what you do; we still love you.”

“You shouldn’t,” I sobbed. “Mum I’ve made such a mess of everything!”

“That’s enough,” She said, firmly. “This is not my daughter, this is not Rose Weasley. Look you’ve made a mess of things with Mark, fine. Now you have to figure out how you are going to fix things, okay? So if you love Mark, great; if you love Scorpius, great. Or if you don’t love either of them that’s still okay.”

“I don’t know what I feel anymore,” I mumbled. “I just don’t know, Mum.”

She nodded. “You will figure this out, Rose, and you will get your life back on track. I know you will.”

“How do you know that?” I asked her, doubtfully.

She stroked my cheek and smiled at me. “Because you are my baby girl,” She said simply. “And I know that you are stronger than anything the world throws at you. You are, Rose.”

I smiled sadly. “I’m glad you have such faith in me, Mum. But I just don’t know.”

“Come on,” She said, pulling me up by the hand. “Come down and have something to eat; Al’s downstairs waiting to see you.”

I got up, reluctantly, but knowing I couldn’t hide away forever. I walked over to the dresser where I had spent hours getting ready yesterday, and looked at myself in the mirror.

My hair was wildly curly and tangled. I sighed and took a bobble from the dressing table and pulled my hair into a bun on the top of my head, before looking at my face. My eyes were red and swollen, all traces of the make-up I’d been wearing gone. I glanced over at the wardrobe and saw my wedding dress hanging on the door, beautiful and useless. I didn’t even really remember changing out of it, though I was wearing my pyjamas.

I followed Mum downstairs into the kitchen, where Albus was sitting reading the Daily Prophet. Dad was nowhere to be seen, so I figured he must be at work. Al looked up as I came in and he got out of his seat and gave me a big, protective hug.

“How are you?” He asked me, sensitively.

I laughed sadly. “Jilted.”

He smiled. “Well you need to eat something,” He told me. “Doesn’t she Aunt Hermione?”

“Yes,” Said Mum firmly. “You have to eat.”

I sat down at the breakfast bar across from Al while Mum made us both some scrambled eggs and toast. I picked at the food, only eating a few mouthfuls to please them, and gulped down my orange juice.

When Al was finished eating and he had put down the newspaper, I looked at him significantly. “You have to find him for me.”

Albus nodded. “Okay. But will it make a difference?”

I shook my head. “I don’t think so. But I need to explain…I need to tell him that I didn’t want this. I don’t want him to think I’d known this would happen.”

“Right,” He said. “I’ll do my best, but I don’t know where to start.”

“Thank you, Al,” I said, quietly. “Have you…?” I trailed off, looking down at my plate.

“Have I spoken to Scorpius?” He asked. “No. I could throttle him for doing that Rosie.”

I nodded. “I don’t know what he expected,” I whispered. “Did he think I would just declare my love for him and run away with him?”

Albus shook his head. “I don’t know what he expected. I don’t think he was really thinking, to be honest.”

I sighed. “I didn’t think he could hurt me anymore than he already had,” I said. “But he’s gone and done it again.”

“He loves you,” Said Al, shrugging. “And to him, everything else is secondary to that.”

“I hate him,” I whispered. “I never thought I’d say it, but it’s true. I hate Scorpius Malfoy.”

*

I got dressed and decided to go back to the flat, much to Mum’s vehement disagreement. I had to go though; if I went home there was a chance that Mark might come and then I could explain.

I found myself stopping in at Megan’s before I went home. I wasn’t even really sure why, I just wanted to see her. She’d stayed with me for hours after the wedding, lying with me while I cried and slept, eventually leaving to go home to Steven and Allie.

I knocked on the door and Stevie answered, carrying Allie on his shoulders. His face was immediately sympathetic when he saw me, which annoyed me a little.

“Rose,” He said at once, letting me in. He put a hand on my back. “How are you?”

I shrugged. “Coping,” I replied, smiling at Allie. “Hi, baby girl.”

Allie grinned at me. “Hi Aunt Rose,” She said, climbing from Stevie’s arms to mine. “I’m sorry you didn’t get married.”

Steven shot an apologetic look at me and I shook my head. “Thanks Allie,” I said. “I’m sorry too.”

Steven led us into the kitchen, where Megan was sitting sketching some new designs. She didn’t have the same, pitying look Steven had given me; she looked different. She looked almost guilty for some reason as she got up and hugged me tightly, much like Albus had.

“Come on, Allie,” Said Stevie, taking his daughter’s hand. “Mummy and Aunt Rose need to talk about grown up things.” Allie nodded and smiled at me.

“Don’t worry,” She said. “It will be okay.”

I could have cried again as she said it, but I managed to maintain control and forced a smile for my goddaughter.

“Have you seen Mark?” Megan asked me at once.

I shook my head. “Albus is trying to find him. I’m going home…”

She raised her eyebrows. “You shouldn’t be on your own,” She said, firmly. “I’ll come with you, Steven can look after Allie and-”

“No,” I said. “I need to be there, because Mark might come home and then I can talk to him, I really need to talk to him Megan.”

She nodded in understanding. “I’m so sorry this happened, Rose.”

“You don’t have anything to be sorry for,” I muttered. “The truth is maybe if I’d listened to you I could have seen this coming.”

She nodded, her eyes filled with sadness. “Oh,” I said. “What did you want to talk to me about? You kept saying you had to talk to me, what was it?”

Megan stared at me with a pained expression. I frowned at her in confusion. “What is it?” I asked her.

“I don’t want to lie to you,” She whispered. “But the truth will make you hate me.”

“Megan,” I said, taking her hand. “I could never hate you! Just tell me I promise it will be okay. Come on it can get much worse, can it?”

She shook her head. “It can,” She whispered sadly. “Rose it’s all my fault.”

I frowned again. “What do you mean? How could it be your fault?”

Her expression was tragic as she looked at me. “I went to see Scorpius,” She said. “The day before the wedding and…I told him that you weren’t completely sure about marrying Mark.”

I stared at her, in disbelief. “You did what?” I whispered.

“I wanted you to be with Scorpius,” She cried. “And so I asked him what he was going to do and he said he’d see me at the wedding.”

I gasped, pulling my hand out of hers. “You did this?” I demanded. “How could you?”

“I tried to tell you!” She said, desperately. “But you didn’t have time to talk to me and everything was happening so fast. I’m so sorry Rose I didn’t mean to-”

“To what?” I shouted. “Ruin my wedding?”

“I didn’t realise what Scorpius would do!” She insisted. “I though he would talk to you before, explain how he feels.”

“What gives you the right to mess about in my personal life?” I demanded angrily. “This had nothing to do with you – you were supposed to be my maid of honour and you tell another man to come and ruin my wedding?”

“I just wanted you to realise how you feel about Scorpius, Rose!”

“It is not your place to do that!” I argued, standing up. “And rather than talk to me you go to Scorpius? After everything he’s put me through!”

“Rose I’m sorry!” She cried. “Please don’t go!”

I shook my head at her. “I can’t even look at you right now.” I told her. And with that I marched out of her house and onto the street, apparating back to my flat with shaking hands and the weighty knowledge that my life seemed to be set on self-destruct mode and there was nothing I could do about it.

The moment I arrived in the flat, I knew I wasn’t alone. With a rush of hope, I ran into the bedroom and there he was.

Mark. The man who had saved me, made me happy again – Mark.

But it was all wrong. He barely looked up as I came in; he was standing at the foot of our bed, on which lay a large brown suitcase which he was bundling his clothes into.

“Please don’t ask me to stay Rose,” He said, in a shaky voice. “Because I can’t.”

I nodded; I knew that much. “I’m sorry,” I said. “I’m sorry this is how it’s ended, Mark.”

He looked up at me. “Did you ever love me?”

“Yes!” I told him. “I did – I do! Mark you made me so happy and I fell in love with you so quickly. And I wanted to marry you!”

He nodded. “But I was all wrong for you.”

“No,” I argued, “You are perfect for me.”

“Scorpius is right about it,” He said. “I should be the guy you want, but you aren’t looking for perfect; you just want him.” He raised a hand as I went to argue. “And one of these days you will realise that, Rose.”

“I won’t,” I said, defiantly. “I know my own heart.”

“Yes you do,” He agreed. “But there’s the part of your heart that you closed off, the part that belongs to him.” He sighed as he pulled the zip closed on the suitcase.

“Oh,” He said. “The honeymoon…you take it. Go with Megan or something. I don’t want to go anymore anyway.”

“I don’t want to go without you,” I whispered.

He shrugged. “You know what I keep thinking?” He said. “I wish I’d never proposed; then we would still be together, and even if Scorpius was back, we would be together. Because I could have kept on trying to convince myself that you really loved me, and not him, if we weren’t engaged.”

“I was happy when you proposed,” I said at once. “I wouldn’t have wanted you to not ask me to marry you.”

“But you were surprised,” He pointed out. “You know you were; and we really rushed into things. It was too soon to be getting engaged, I see that now; yeah okay, I’m twenty-three but you’re only twenty-one years old, Rose!”

“So what?” I asked. “I’m off the hook because I’m young?”

He laughed bitterly. “I guess what I mean is I understand; you were just getting over Scorpius when I swooped in and we fell madly in love. So I don’t blame you Rose,” He said, sincerely. “And I don’t even blame Scorpius.”

I shook my head. “Well, I’m sure he’ll be delighted to know that,”

Mark laughed again, although it didn’t meet his eyes; they were the tell-tale signs that his heart was aching as much as mine was.

“You know what the sad thing is?” He said, quietly.

“What?” I asked him in a flat voice.

He smiled. “I could love you forever, Rose. I just wish it were enough.”

*

Several hours later, I lay on my sofa in my dressing gown, haven taken a long bath. I had hoped it might relieve some of my stress but the hot water and relaxing aroma had done nothing to help me.

I felt as though I’d been through some great trauma; my bones ached all over and I was exhausted. An owl had arrived an hour previously, which I had read once and then thrown onto the table. It was exactly what I expected, and I had no intentions of replying:

Rose,

I’m sorry. I didn’t mean for you to get hurt, although it seems you always do regardless. I need to see you; I need to be with you. I meant what I said yesterday; I love you and I’m not prepared to give up. I’ll take whatever you or your family throw at me because it’s worth it.

Remember that time we were lying in bed, that Sunday morning in the flat? And you asked me to tell you a secret and I said I’d love you for forever? Well I meant it. And yes I’m a stupid fucker because I threw it away when I had you all to myself. But I’m done being stupid.

Reply to me Rose, please. Tell me that I can see you, so that I can make you see; we belong with each other, Weasley, that’s the way it’s always been.

I hope you’re okay,

Yours always, Scorp

I lay there silently, watching the television though not really hearing or seeing the programme. I had contacted Al to inform him I’d seen Mark; he offered to come over but I declined; I wanted to be alone.

So I could have wept when there was a loud knock at the door. I stayed still, ignoring it. If it was important they would phone or owl me. I tried to immerse myself in the television show, but all I could think of was Mark, Scorpius, Megan and the incessant knocking of someone who wasn’t prepared to give up.

I sighed loudly and dragged myself off the couch to answer, begging it not to be Scorpius. I pulled the door open and was met be Dominique, standing in front of me holding a large, pink suitcase and wearing a straw hat.

She grinned at me and pushed past me into the flat, dragging me along by the hand.

“Okay,” She said. “I love you and I’m sorry you’re broken-hearted - blah blah blah. Mark owled me and said to make sure you take the honeymoon as someone should enjoy it. So here I am!”

I raised my eyebrows at her. “What are you on about, Dom?”

She took the hat off and plonked it down onto my head. “I’m helping you to mend your broken heart by the use of sun, sea and sand. You and I, my dear cousin, are going to the Bahamas.”

“No, Dominique,” I said, shaking my head. “I’m not going.”

“Yes you are!” She told me firmly. “Apart from anything else you already took a week’s holiday from work and you are not going to wallow around here for seven days feeling sorry for yourself. Pack your case Rose!”

I sighed. I guess she was right; what else was I going to do? At least this got me away from everyone for a while.

“Rose, what’s that?” Asked Dom, pointing to the letter from Scorpius which was lying on the table.

“It’s nothing,” I said. “Nothing important.”

*

Three days later, I was lying on a comfortable sun-lounger on a clean, white beach in the Bahamas. It was late afternoon, and the sun was beating down on my skin in the most delightful way. I tilted my head to the other side of the pillow beneath my head, sighing lazily.

I glanced to my left and saw Dominique, tanned and long-legged, her blonde hair partially hidden by the familiar straw hat as she leafed through her book contentedly. She turned the page and saw me watching her, and smiled.

“Would you like a cocktail?” She asked me, grinning.

I smiled. “Not right now,” I muttered. “Later, definitely.”

“Okay,” She said, looking back at her book.

“Uh-oh,” Said the familiar voice from my right. “Dom he’s back.”

I smiled over at Albus, lying on his lounger, his hands behind his head and his eyes fixed on the man we’d been spying on for the last three days.

Al’s decision, or should I say request to come with us had been an easy one on his part. As soon as his Mum had told him that Dom and I were coming, he’d booked himself into the hotel and floo’d straight over to tell us he would be joining us. We didn’t really mind and it had turned out really fun having him there; he came with many added bonuses, for example my ability to hold his hand whenever I received any unwanted male attention that disrupted me from my being heartbroken and boring.

Dom and I glanced over at the man in question, me peering over my sunglasses. He was very tall, and very tanned, but unfortunately very off-limits as Dominique had learned this morning when she’d tried to flirt with him.

“I bet he’s a serial womaniser,” Said Al, as we watched him frolicking with his girlfriend. “He’s probably got five wives wherever he’s from.”

I laughed while Dom pulled her hat down to cover her face in embarrassment.

“I still can’t believe what Megan did!” She said suddenly. Dominique had been very prone to these outbursts regarding my “situation” – that was what we were referring to my unsuccessful wedding as.

I shrugged. “She must have had her reasons.”

“Megan Bryce Finnegan would walk across hot coals for you, Rose,” Said Al firmly, reiterating his firm opinion. “Whatever reason she did it for, she did it for you. Nothing surer.”

Al was convinced of Megan’s innocence in the whole situation, while Dom and I didn’t know what to think.

“It’s not like I’m going to stop talking to her,” I admitted. “I mean I’ve known her for ten years – I’m her daughter’s bloody godmother for Christ’s sake! But right now I think I’m allowed to be a little annoyed, aren’t I?”

“Yes,” Said Dom at once. “Have you replied?”

“Sort of,” I admitted, sheepishly.

Megan had written to me yesterday, after hearing where we’d gone from James. Her letter was short and sweet, and very Allie influenced:

Rose,

Hi from back home! We hope you are having lots of fun in the Bahamas and that you are okay – I’m sure Dom and Al are looking after you (by the way tell them hi from us!) Anyway I just thought we would owl you; Allie misses her Aunt Rose very much, and I miss my best friend. We both can’t wait until you come home so we can see you, and I hope you’ll give me the chance to explain what I did.

Lots of love,

Megan and Allie

“What do you mean sort of?” Asked Al, grinning.

“I replied to Allie, basically.” I told them, shrugging. My reply had been similar, and totally focused on my god-daughter. I was annoyed at Megan, but I could never be annoyed at Allie; and I certainly couldn’t ignore her;

Allie,

We are all missing you lots little girl! I hope you’re behaving for Mummy and Daddy, and I can’t wait to see you when I come home – I promise I will get you a present. Tell your Mummy I will speak to her when I get back, but for now I need to relax. I love you lots, Allie – be good.

Love,

Aunt Rose xxx

So yes it was a bit of a cop-out, but Megan was going to read it anyway. They would know I was okay so what more could she ask for right now?

I sighed and looked out to the vast, crystal blue sea, while Dom and Al chatted animatedly by my side. I thought of Mum and Dad, and found myself contemplating a quote my Mum had once told me by a famous Muggle activist. It was just after I’d gotten into Healer training, and she was being all inspirational and proud. But for some reason this quote had always stuck with me.

I mouthed the words quietly as I gazed as the wall of blue that was the sea and the sky; “Everything we do will be insignificant – but it is very important that we do it.”

So with that said; where did fate come in? I had been pondering this for the last few days; so many people had told me Scorpius and I were destined to be together – that it was fate. So if this was our fate, then what did it matter what choices any of us made, if our paths were already written?

What was the point in me trying to take any kind of control for my life, if there was something greater that had decided long ago that I belonged with Scorpius Malfoy? But the quote was right; even if my choices were insignificant, I still had to try.

My Mum had been right; I had to figure things out and fix my life, or inevitably be left wondering what could have been. I was faced with the ultimate and age-old quandary: sink or swim?

And this time, I was choosing to swim. Even if it meant making choices that would be all together pointless, even if it meant not always getting what I thought I wanted.

Even if it meant surrendering to the abundantly clear knowledge that, whether I liked it or not, Scorpius Malfoy was destined to be in my life in some way or another.

And there was absolutely nothing I could do about it. 

*


A/N I think a very random trip to the Bahamas with Dom and Al is exactly what Rose needs right now, don't you? I hope you liked it, and I promise there will be Rose/Scorp contact in Chapter 14! Love you all! xxx

Chapter 14: Back To Reality
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Warning - filler ahead! But I've been studying! And if anybody is interested I spent the whole week studying for my spanish oral exam, only to be told half an hour before that due to that charming volcanic ash, the spanish examiners were stranded across Europe and the exam is cancelled until further notice! Gosh! Anywho, I hope you like this one - now I apologise again, Scorp isn't in this chapter, as I said it's a filler! BUT I've just written the next chapter and there is an explosive confrontation between he and Rose at the end! Enjoy this one for now! xxx
*



“Ow!” Shouted Al. “Rose it really hurts!”

“Well it’s your own fault, Albus, and I’m trying my best!” I said, sighing. “It is difficult not being able to whip up a potion you know!”

I grinned at Dom and squirted more After-Sun onto Al’s red, badly sunburnt back and shoulders. We had tried to tell him that he needed to perform a sun-block charm, or at least apply Muggle sun-screen, but he hadn’t listened and now he was standing in front of me, shirtless and lobster-like, crying out in pain.

“You know for a Healer you really are an idiot, Al,” Laughed Dom. “At least it will go brown.”

We both laughed while he moaned again as I rubbed the After Sun into his sore-looking skin as gently as I could. “You do realise your Mum is never going to let you come on holiday with us again?” I told him.

“I’m an adult!” He said, adamantly. “I do what I want.”

“Oh an owl!” Said Dom, getting up from her bed and walking over to the balcony, where a snowy owl was sitting. “The Muggles are going to wonder what the hell is going on if they see an owl in the Bahamas!”

“Who’s it for?” I asked, whilst Albus put his t-shirt back on, wincing in pain.

“Me,” She muttered, opening it. We watched as she read it, and her eyes widened in shock. “Oh my God!” She shouted, grinning hugely.

“What?” Said Al, in a frantic voice.

“Vic’s pregnant!” She told us excitedly. “She and Teddy are having a baby due in May!”

“May?!” I demanded, while Al congratulated them happily. “That’s so exciting!”

“Oh I’m so happy for them,” Said Dom, glowing with happiness for her sister and brother-in-law. “I’m going to have a little niece or nephew!”

“That’s amazing, Dom,” Al said, smiling. “Your Mum and Dad will be well chuffed.”

“She says they are,” She nodded, looking at the letter. She suddenly laughed and we looked at her questioningly. “She says Dad is a little upset to have proof that she and Teddy have sex.”

Al laughed. “Well they are married! And they’ve been together for what – like nine years?”

“Yeah,” She smiled. “I think it’s a daddy’s girl thing though,” She told him. “Like Rose I’m sure your Dad knows you’re not a virgin, but he probably doesn’t like to think about it.”

I chuckled. “Yes my Dad definitely doesn’t like to think about it. I think he still thinks I’m nine years old; I remember when I told him I was moving in with-”

I stopped dead and looked at the floor. Of course I’d been about to say Scorpius. Dom looked sympathetic, and Al awkward.

“Do you think you’re going to talk to him when we get home?” Dom said, carefully.

I shook my head. “There’s no reason why I should. I don’t even know when or if I will see him anyway.”

“Well…” Said Albus, uncomfortably. “I kind of wanted to talk to you about that; you know Scorpius is my mate, but you’re my cousin and….well I get it if you don’t want me to be mates with him anymore.”

I sighed. “Of course I don’t want that,” I assured him. “I would never ask you to do that, even though I’m so touched that you would. He’s your oldest friend, Al, and he was your best friend before he was my ex-boyfriend who ruined my wedding so…”

Albus and Dom smiled at me.

“Anyway,” I said, hastily. “We need to get packed!”

“I can’t believe we’re going home tomorrow!” Dom said sadly. “This has been our little home for three weeks,” She said, looking round at the apartment.

“It’s been three very good weeks,” I stated, grinning.

“Definitely,” Agreed Al. “Sunburn aside, that is.”

“Just think, you had such a great tan, and now you’ve ruined it,” Laughed Dominique, while Albus scowled at her.

“I’m so grateful to both of you,” I said, suddenly very emotional. “You have no idea how much it means to me, that you came with me and helped me get over everything.”

Albus put his arm around me while Dom grinned. “It’s no problem,” She said. “I mean that’s what family is for, isn’t it?”

“Yeah,” Albus agreed. “And we only came because it was free!”

I shook my head at him, hugging him back until he screamed out in pain; I must have touched the dreaded sunburn.

We were up at half-five the next morning, all three of us looking like death warmed up. I took a cold shower to try and waken up a bit, and dressed in a summery, white sundress; even though I knew it would be most likely freezing back home, considering we were into the beginning of November. I was trying to prolong the holiday feeling, wishing I could stay here for another three weeks.

I sat down at the dressing table and brushed my hair, which had grown a lot over the past few weeks and had gained a few little blonde highlights in the sun. My face was browner than I’d ever seen it before, and was scattered with several new freckles. I felt relaxed and well-rested, and thought I resembled someone a lot happier now then the depressed Rose I’d been when we left.

Dominique plonked down onto the seat beside me, and picked up my brush, pulling it through her long, sand-coloured waves. If Albus and I were tanned, it was nothing compared to her; her skin glowed, sun kissed and smooth-looking. She too was dressed poorly for the weather that would be waiting for us at home, in a pair of denim shorts and a cream, sleeveless blouse. I noticed that her beloved straw hat was sitting on her lap, and I had no doubt she would be taking it home with her.

She sighed, her lower lip sticking out sadly. “When does the portkey leave again?”

“Six,” I replied, yawning.

“I don’t want to leave!” She complained. “I like it here!”

“I know,” I said vaguely. “It’s like paradise. But sadly we all have jobs to go back to, you have a pregnant sister to congratulate, I have a best friend to forgive, and Albus needs to see a skin specialist at St Mungo’s about those burns pronto!”

Dom laughed, as we glanced over at Albus, who was sitting on his case trying to make it shut. “It really has been a great trip, hasn’t it?”

“Yeah,” I smiled. “It really has.”

*

“Fuck – off!” Stuttered Dominique, her teeth chattering. I nodded at her, shaking, and pulled a hastily packed thin cardigan from my bag and pulled it on, goose bumps rising on my arms. Albus plonked his case down and looked into the distance.

The portkey had taken us to a small field just up the road from my Mum and Dad’s, where we now stood, freezing. Being their age, and having lived through the horrors of war that they had, my parents, like many others their age, still operated protective enchantments around their home, meaning that this was the closest you could apparate to the house.

Having all grown up with this, Dom, Al and I were completely used to it. However we didn’t normally have to walk the ten-minute walk at five past six on a cold, dark November morning, whilst wearing summer attire.

“Come on, then,” Said Albus, picking up his bags once more and setting off. Dominique and I exchanged a dark look, and set off after him, none of us speaking as we fought our way against the chilly, blustery wind.

We finally arrived at the house, where the three of us were going to sleep for a few hours before going to our own homes. Mum and Dad had bought Mark and me the honeymoon, and since it had been booked it their name the portkey had to leave and return to their address. Rather than apparate home, which would be frankly unsafe considering how tired we all were, we had just agreed to get some sleep here just now and then go home in the afternoon.

We entered silently, not wanting to wake Mum or Dad, who were sure to be still sleeping. We crept through my kitchen, Dom and I rolling our eyes at Al, who paused to help himself to some cake from the fridge. We said “goodnight” to each other (although it was morning it still felt like the evening to us) and went off to our respective rooms; me in my old, childhood bedroom which was exactly the same as I’d left it when I moved out four years ago, Al in Hugo’s room and Dom in the spare.

I dumped my case against the wall as I entered my dark bedroom, flicking the lights on as I passed. It was scarily tidy; tidier than it had ever been when I still lived at home; all the mess and chaos from the day of the wedding cleared away by Mum, I guessed. My Mum was freakishly tidy and organized; the only person I’d ever met like her was Scorpius.

I put my wand down on my old dressing table and opened the drawer where I kept spare pyjamas for whenever I stayed. I pulled them out, noting that they smelled freshly laundered; Mum must have known we would have all wanted to go straight to sleep. I glanced at my bed and saw a piece of parchment folded over; picking it up I read my Dad’s messy scrawl-like writing:

Hi Rosie,

Welcome back to Britain! We’ve missed you loads! We just wanted to leave you a little note to say hello, as you’ll probably be heading straight to bed when you get here; we’ll see you in the afternoon, and we can’t wait to hear all about the Bahamas! Sleep well, angel.

Love,

Dad and Mum

I smiled at their note, gratefully; that was so like my parents to leave me a note, even thought they were sleeping next door. I slipped off my sandals and then pulled of my cardigan and dress, pulling my pyjamas on sleepily. I went over to the wardrobe to find a hanger to hand the clothes on, and pulled it open.

The wardrobe was mostly empty, apart from a few things I hadn’t taken with me; some old dresses that weren’t my style anymore, all my old Hogwarts robes, and then, right at the very back, my wedding dress was hanging, just as beautiful as ever. I stroked the decadent, ivory silk, smiling sadly, my mind plagued with regret over the things I couldn’t change. Shrugging to myself, I hung up my sun dress and cardigan, and closed the wardrobe, wishing I could forget I’d ever seen the dress hanging there.

My bed was unbelievably comfy as I slid into it, stretching out on the soft, springy mattress and snuggling into the thick quilt as I inhaled the familiar smell of the fabric softener my Mum used. I picked up my wand from beside me and flicked it towards the lights, which went off. I sighed as I sunk into the pillows, smiling around at the familiar, comforting bedroom and considering the possibility of letting the lease on the flat go and moving back home for a while.

*

We all ended up staying at Mum and Dad’s all afternoon, the three of us lazing around in our pyjamas before we would have to go back to work the next day. When Mum and Dad came home from work, they both hugged me warmly.

“You look fabulous!” Said Mum, grinning. “All of you! So tanned!”

“No sunburn then, eh?” Asked Dad, joking.

Dom and I glanced at Albus, who said nothing. I suppressed a laugh; Albus had made a burns potion as soon as he’d gotten up this morning and hadn’t mentioned the dreaded sunburn since.

“So did you all enjoy yourselves, then?” Asked Dad, sitting down beside me.

“It was really good,” I nodded. “Just what I needed to relax.”

They nodded, looking relieved. “And what about Victoire, Dominique!” Said Mum excitedly. “Your Nana is beside herself with excitement, and your Mum!”

Dom nodded, grinning. “It’s amazing news,” She said. “I can’t believe I’ll be an Auntie!”

“I can’t believe how fast you’re all growing up!” Laughed Dad. “Jesus Christ, Bill’s going to be a grandpa! That’s mental, that is.”

“And you’ll be a great uncle,” I teased, elbowing him.

Dad looked horrified. “But I’m so young!”

We all laughed at him. “Well,” Said Mum, looking thoughtful. “Since you’re all here, why don’t we invite everyone round for dinner? It can be a sort of celebration for Teddy and Vicky!”

Al smiled. “Yeah that sounds good, Aunt Hermione.”

After all the owls had been sent, around eighty-percent of the Weasley extended family all came round; Nana, Bill and Fleur, George, Angelina, Fred and Roxie, the rest of the Potters, minus Lily obviously, and of course, Teddy and Vic. Only missing were Percy and Audrey, and the ones still at Hogwarts.

Nana and Ginny helped Mum in the kitchen, while we caught up with James, Fred and Roxanne in my room. They had all hugged me and asked how I was, but I brushed off their worries; I wasn’t bloody mental or anything.

“Have your heard from Mark?” I asked carefully, looking at James.

James shook his head. “According to his brother he’s away to stay with his parents,” He told me. “I think he’s just apparating into London for work.”

I nodded; Mark’s Mum and Dad lived down south, and that was where I’d expected him to go. “I’m thinking about letting the flat go, and moving in with Mum and Dad again,” I admitted to them.

They didn’t really look all that surprised, though James raised his eyebrows.

“Well…we could take it?” He said, motioning to himself and Fred. “Obviously I was back home for a while but…well I kind of want my own place again and we were thinking of getting a flat.”

“Oh,” I said, while Fred nodded eagerly. “Well yeah,” I said slowly. “I suppose that makes sense.”

I didn’t really know why I was so unsure of the idea. I suppose I just found it weird; the thought of my cousins staying in the flat where I’d lived with Mark, where we’d slept together, where he’d proposed…

“Well it might be kind of small, right enough,” Said Fred, giving me a tiny nod. “I mean it’s only one bedroom, we need something bigger.”

“Ah that’s true,” Said James. “We can’t be cramped for space in the bachelor pad!”

Dom, Roxie and I laughed at this, while Al shook his head. “Man I’m going to be lonely back home again!”

“Well maybe you should move out!” Laughed Roxanne.

Albus looked affronted. “Are you kidding?! Leave three hot meals a day and all my washing done for me? No chance!”

We all laughed as there was a light knock on my door. I shouted to come in and it opened, to reveal Victoire and Teddy.

“Dinner’s ready,” Ted told us.

“Yeah and we were feeling left out of all the young banter,” Said Vic, smiling. “We’re cool too you know!”

Dom raised her eyebrows at me, and then grinned at her sister. “Please!” She scoffed. “You’re 27, Teddy’s 28, you’re married and expecting a kid. You’re hardly young and cool, Vic.”

Teddy looked upset. “But we are!” He insisted. “And plus Rose nearly got married, I bet you still would have thought she was cool!”

I seized up a little inside, but otherwise didn’t react. It wasn’t like Teddy meant anything by it.

“Yeah,” Said James. “But Rose is a lot cooler than you, Teddy, mate.”

“Well what about Megan?” Said Vic, clutching at straws. “She’s married and has a child!”

“Yes, but Megan is only 21!” Fred pointed out, laughing, while Al, Dom and I exchanged glances; they were the only ones who knew Megan and I weren’t speaking.

“You’re really not getting this, are you?” Said Roxie.

“It’s because you’re old,” Dom assured them, smiling at her sister and brother-in-law. “But it’s okay because I’m going to have the most amazing niece or nephew in the world!”

“Dinner!” Yelled Aunt Ginny from downstairs. We all jumped and got up, hurrying out of my room; none of us were brave enough to provoke the wrath of Ginny Potter – especially not her sons.

We all ate until we were literally stuffed, and then Uncle Bill made a toast to Teddy and Victoire, and the new Weasley-Lupin arrival. I offered to wash up the dishes, and Uncle Harry said he’d help me.

“So how are you, Rosie?” He asked me as I set the dishes to washing themselves and started clearing the table.

“I’m fine,” I said smiling at him. “Better now, after going away; it was so relaxing and fun.”

“That’s good,” He nodded. “It’s great to see all of you getting on so well. Sometimes I wonder how there aren’t more fights, with so many cousins.”

I laughed. “I think Al and James’ fight was enough for all of us,” I reminded him.

“Oh don’t mention that,” He laughed, frowning. “I don’t really like to remember. So have you heard from Mark?”

I sighed. “No,” I admitted. “I don’t think I’ll be hearing from him for a while,” I said sadly. “But I’m at peace with it now…it’s understandable.”

Uncle Harry nodded. “Rose,” He said. “Please don’t let this get you down; I know how upsetting it is for you but…well your Mum and Dad hate to see you hurting. You should hear your Dad talk about Scorpius Malfoy.”

I smiled. “Believe me, I’d rather not. I used to get so annoyed at him, right after Scorpius and I had broken up. Even though I was so angry at Scorpius, I didn’t want my Dad saying bad things about him.”

Harry laughed. “I suppose it’s always that way, isn’t it?”

“Well it wasn’t for you!” I laughed. “You’ve been with Aunt Ginny since you were seventeen! Same with Mum and Dad!”

“Well yeah, we did have it quite easy in the romance department,” He allowed. “But we made up for it with all the war and fighting,”

“That’s true,” I said. “Though sometimes I think I’d rather have lived back then…at least you were doing something great, fighting for the wizarding world. And the three of you came out of it such great people, and got married and had your kids…you had the perfect happy ending. Sometimes I doubt any of us will ever have that.”

Harry looked thoughtful. “You will,” He said. “The reason we settled down so early was because we all had to grow up so quickly; kind of like your friend Megan, I suppose. But you have longer to enjoy your youth, without worrying; and that’s what we were fighting for, Rose.”

I nodded, and he smiled at me. “Besides, I’m hardly a great person.” He added darkly.

I raised my eyebrows at my Uncle. “You are!” I told him. “You’re the Chosen One, boy who lived – you’re Harry bloody Potter!”

“Yeah but what did it take to get me here?” He asked quietly. The conversation had taken a more serious turn, and I got the impression this wasn’t something Harry talked about a lot.

“I might have saved the wizarding world, Rose, might be Dad to three great kids…but I’m also the guy who performed all the Unforgiveable Curses; killed a man, used the Cruciatus Curse more than once, Imperius as well. I stole, I lied, and I put your parents in a lot of life-threatening situations.”

I felt inexplicably grateful to my Uncle Harry; he was the man who had given up everything to save our world, and still carried the guilt of his actions that nobody but himself judged.

“You might have done those things,” I said. “But it was for a good cause; and you did it to bad people.”

Harry shrugged. “Maybe so,” He admitted. “I just wish everyone would remember I’m not perfect. And I certainly didn’t manage it on my own; I would be dead without your Mum and Dad, Rose, that’s a certainty. I owe them my life, just as much as you and Hugo do.”

I laughed bitterly. “And how do I repay them? By humiliating them with a failed marriage and spending years in a relationship with the son of their enemy.”

Harry shook his head firmly. “Don’t you see? That’s why we fought all those years ago; so our children, and our grandchildren and their children would be able to make their own choices about who they spent their lives with. So their relationships wouldn’t be dictated by blood status and surname! So what if you marry a Malfoy, Rose? Yeah okay, we don’t like his father, but that doesn’t mean we don’t like him! Scorpius is my son’s best mate!”

I sighed. “Well I’m not marrying a Malfoy anyways, so it doesn’t matter.

“Not now,” Said Harry, smiling. “You never know what the future holds.”

“People keep saying it’s like my destiny to be with him,” I admitted, desperately seeking reassurance from the man I so looked up to.

Harry laughed. “Destiny, fate, prophecy!” He scoffed. “So what if it was written long ago that you’d be with him? Make your own decisions; I don’t set much to store by these things…everyone said it was destiny for me to die, didn’t they? And here I am. You make your own choices, Rose, remember that. Nobody can decide your future but you; I’m living proof of that.”

I smiled at him and he ruffled my hair affectionately. “Remember the day you came to tell your Dad you were going out with him?” He asked, grinning.

I laughed. “How could I forget? There I was, shitting myself, and along you all already knew as my Mum couldn’t keep her mouth shut!”

“Your face was a picture!” He laughed.

“I honestly think they live to torture me,” I joked. “You know I walked in on them the other day snogging! Snogging at their age! It’s their life’s ambition to make me miserable!”

Harry burst out laughing. “Nah, no way!” He assured me. “I remember the day you were born as if it were yesterday, Rose. Your Mum didn’t exactly love being pregnant the first time round; we’d all been at ours celebrating James’ first birthday the day before, and then first thing the next morning we got word from your Dad that Hermione had gone into labour.”

I smiled as he told me; I’d never heard the story of the day I’d been born from anyone other than Mum or Dad.

“So in we went, rushing to St Mungo’s, me carrying the one-year old James in my arms, Ginny eight months pregnant with Albus.” He looked far away as he told it, as if he were reliving the memories. “Twenty-nine hours later,” He said, as I laughed. “And out came your Dad, holding you. I swear to God, Rose, I’ve never seen him so happy. You were the best thing that ever happened to them, and then Hugo after you as well. Your Mum and Dad were destined to be parents.”

“I thought you didn’t believe in destiny?” I joked and he laughed.

“Well I don’t exactly…but if there’s one thing I’m sure was meant to be, it’s the story of Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger.”

I nodded, and gave him a hug. “Don’t worry, Rose.” He said, smiling at me. “Your Mum and Dad just want you to be happy; as long as you are, they will be too.”

I smiled up at him. To the wizarding world, Harry Potter was so many things; saviour of our race, the boy who lived, the Chosen One, Head of the Auror department, public hero…But to me, he was just Uncle Harry.

And I had the feeling this chat with him had done me the world of good.

*


A/N Sorry for the slightly fluff-tastic ending, but yay for Harry, he is our hero after all! Thoughts?

Chapter 15: Once Bitten, Twice Shy
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Disclaimer: this all belongs to the fabulous JKR!!!

*


“Okay so you promise me you’re going to take your potion every day?” I asked the middle-aged man, who had been cursed accidentally at work.

He nodded, the colour slowly coming back to him, now that he had stopped sprouting toadstool-like spots all over his face. “I promise,”

“Because the after-effects will last a couple of days if you don’t,” I reminded him for the thousandth time.

“I’ll take it,” He said, getting up, helped by his anxious looking wife.

“Okay,” I replied, handing her the prescription. “If you take this to the reception they’ll sort out your prescription for you.”

“Thank you very much, Healer Weasley,” His wife said, smiling warmly at me.

“Yes thank you,” Mr Arnolds added. “Very much.”

“No problem,” I smiled, as they left. I glanced at my watch as Healer Greene came over to me, looking stressed as usual.
“Rose,” She said, handing me a patient’s form. “You’ve got a four-year old coming in with her Dad; broken arm.”

“Thanks, Healer Greene,” I said, looking down at the patient’s information. I gasped as I read the surname Finnegan written in Steven’s familiar handwriting. I looked up and saw him walking over to me, carrying a crying Allie in his arms.

“We were at the park,” He explained, apologetically. “I took my eyes off her for two minutes to help a woman with her pram and she fell off the slide.”

“Oh Allie!” I said sadly. Allie turned to look at me, her face pink and blotchy and her eyes swollen. “Are you okay?”

She shook her head at me, her lower lip trembling. I gently pulled her left arm forward to examine it, and she winced in pain.

“Oh this is nothing,” I said, in a silly voice. “One wave of my wand and it’ll be fixed, okay?” I told her, as Steven sat down onto the hospital bed with her on his lap.

“Can you hold her arm out straight for me Stevie?” I asked, pulling my wand out of my robe pocket.

“Okay Allie,” I said. “Count to three with me and Daddy, okay?”

“One,” Said Steven and I. She joined in as waved my wand over the broken, oddly placed arm. In truth it wasn’t nothing; it wasn’t a clean break, but thankfully fractures were something easily fixed in the wizarding world.

“Now how does that feel?” I asked her carefully.

She managed a small smile for me. “Better,” She said quietly. She reached her arms out to me and I picked her up, hugging her tightly.

“I missed you,” I told her.

“I missed you, Aunt Rose,” She said, frowning slightly. “When did you come home?”

Steven gave me another apologetic look. “Yesterday,” I told her. “I was going to come round to see you tonight.”

“Oh,” Was all she said. I smiled at her.

“I have a present for you,” I said, knowing this would get her attention. “It’s in my bag would you like it now?”

She grinned hugely. “Yes!”

I led the pair of them over to the reception desk and got my bag out from under it, pulling out the huge, blue toy dolphin I’d bought for Allie.

“Wow!” She said in an awed voice. “I love it!”

“What do you say Allie?” Steven reminded her, smiling at me.

“Thank you!” She said, giving me her winning smile.

“You’re very welcome,” I replied, ruffling her hair. She started playing with the dolphin, making it leap up and down over the reception desk, and I looked at Steven.

He sighed. “She really misses you, Rose,” He said quietly.

“Who?” I asked. “Allie?”

“Megan,” He answered, frowning.

I shrugged. “Stevie I was away, nobody’s seen me for three weeks apart from Dom and Al.”

He nodded. “I know that but…well I just hope this thing doesn’t last. She’s really sorry for doing what she did, Rose,” He uttered in a low voice. “And you guys are like sisters.”

“I know,” I sighed. “But it’s complicated, you know?”

“I understand why you’re annoyed,” He said, reassuringly. “But she only did it because she cares about-”

“Steven please,” I said, raising a hand. “This isn’t the place.”

He nodded, looking resigned. “Just don’t think she was avoiding coming here or anything,” He said hastily. “She’s working, and she’ll kill me when she finds out.”

I laughed. “Good luck there, mate,”

“Yeah,” He said, nodding. “So…you know it’s her birthday on Wednesday?”

“Yeah I know,” I said.

Steven smiled sadly. “Well we’d all love to see you,” He told me, glancing at Allie. “I know she wants to see you on her birthday.”

I nodded and he took Allie’s hand. “Bye Aunt Rose!” She said cheerfully. “Thanks for fixing my arm and giving me my dolphin; I named him Rolf.”

I smiled at her. “Rolf is lovely. Bye Allie.”

*

“Is this the last of it?” Asked James, who I had roped into helping my move my stuff out of the flat along with Albus and Fred. Because the flat was in a Muggle block, we had to pack it up magically and then carry it all out to a hired removal van so as not to raise suspicion about our magic.

“I think so,” I said, piling a box of my cutlery into the van. James and I ran back up the two flights of stairs to my flat, where Al and Fred waited.

I looked around at the flat; it was so unlike the home I’d grown up in, which was so large and beautifully decorated. Even the flat I’d had with Scorpius was bigger and nicer; but this place had been mine and Mark’s little home for over a year, and I was going to miss it.

“It looks smaller,” Remarked Albus, looking around nostalgically.

“A lot of good nights in here, eh Rosie?” Said James, grinning at the memories.

“Yeah,” I said, quietly. I walked around the four small rooms, checking everything and just getting one last look; the tiny kitchen, where we’d cooked disastrous meals together, the normally cosy lounge, which now looked empty and cold without the two squashy sofas and television, the bright but small bathroom, and finally our bedroom, bare and unfriendly looking.

Al appeared behind me and put an arm around me. “Is there someone else taking it right away?”

I nodded. “The landlord says it’s a young couple, just married.”

He nodded. “Come on,” He said. “Let’s get going.”

I flicked off all the lights and gave my little home one last look, before closing and locking the door. I felt a few tears well up in my eyes, but smiled at Fred, James and Al all the same.

The four of us walked down the stairs, and I knocked on the door to Mr and Mrs Ferguson, the owners, lightly. Mr Ferguson answered, old, greying and wrinkly. His beady eyes lit up as he saw me and he gave me a crinkly smile.

“Rose,” He said kindly.

“Hi, Mr Ferguson,” I said. “I’ve got the key, here.” I told him, handing him the little brass key that had been mine for a year.

“Ah yes,” He said, pocketing it.

“I’ll contact Mark and have him drop his key off this week,” I said, smiling at him.

“We’re going to miss you,” He told me sincerely, grasping my hand in both of his. “You were both a pleasure to have living here, never any trouble; always so helpful…you will both be sadly missed, dear.”

“Thanks, Mr Ferguson,” I smiled. “I’ll miss you too, and I’m sad to go.”

He nodded, knowingly. “And we were very sorry to hear how things ended up for you, I hope you get your happy ending.”

I nodded. “Thanks,” I said. “I hope you have a nice Christmas.”

“Ready?” Asked Fred, as I joined them on the street. Being the only one with a Muggle driver’s license, Fred would be driving the van the short distance to Mum and Dad’s.

“Yeah,” I said, looking up at the familiar building. “Let’s go.”

I was quiet on the journey to Mum and Dad’s; Fred, James and I went in the front and we put Al in the back with the boxes. James and Fred discussed James’ upcoming match against Puddlemere United, and I leaned my head against the window, thinking.

I was sad to be leaving the flat; it was my home and Al was right, there were a lot of good memories there. But it was odd; I remembered leaving the old flat, after Scorpius went to Cardiff; I was in such a state of shock, and leaving the home we’d shared together had torn me apart. I didn’t feel that way now, and I suppose it was because I had accepted Mark’s decision to cancel the wedding…in fact if I was honest, I think I was starting to see why things might have worked out for the better.

Not to say I was shouting from the rooftops that I was in love with Scorpius Malfoy; nor did I want a relationship with him. And I missed Mark a lot; I had genuinely loved him dearly. But some of the things both Mark and Scorpius said had stuck with me: I was very young, and there was no denying it; Mark and I had really rushed into things by getting engaged. And though I hated to admit it, I had let Mark talk me into it.

At twenty-one years old, and just starting out in my career, I didn’t want to be married and tied down and starting a family; it might have taken me six months to figure it out, but it was true. It was like Uncle Harry had said; he and Mum and Dad had to grow up quickly, but we didn’t; we should enjoy being young, and I intended to.

I was leaving the flat, and with it I would leave the regrets. It was in the past now, and I hoped to turn over a new leaf; a new Rose Weasley, strong and successful, happy being young, free and single. Moving back home to be closer to my family, taking a greater interest in Hugo’s life, spending more time with the rest of my cousins, rather than just the Potters and Dom. This was a brand new start. And the first thing I had to fix was my relationship with my best friend.

It had been twenty-three days since Megan and I had spoken; the longer we had ever gone in our ten year friendship. But I was going to let it go, because there wasn’t any alternative; I would not let her remember her 22nd birthday as the one which we weren’t speaking on. I was starting over, focusing on my career, my family and my friends, and as for my love life? After all the drama I’d been through, I was just going to roll with the punches.

“I can’t believe we’ve got you back home,” Said Mum, as we unpacked my things an hour later.

“I know,” I grinned. “I’m really quite happy to be home, you know?”

She nodded. “What do you want for dinner?”

I laughed. “That’s going to take some getting used to,” I said. “Not having to cook for myself. I don’t mind, Mum, whatever you want to make.”

“You think I’m cooking?” She laughed. “I don’t think so. I’m making your Dad cook!”

“Some things never change,” I joked.

Mum left me to get settled back in and I smiled around at my old room. New room. My room. It felt weird, to think of it as my room again. But nice too. I was just adding a few personal touches now; I put up a few photos, one of Hugo and I, one of me with Al and James, one of Allie, one of Megan, Dom and I and the photo I’d found with Mum of Megan, Stevie, Al, myself and baby Allie.

Once I’d finished, I pulled out a piece of parchment and a quill, took a deep breath and wrote;

Megs,

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, eh? I’m sorry for not contacting you – but I’ve just been working through things. I have some much-needed clarity now, and although I don’t like what you did, and I wish you hadn’t, I think I understand why. Regardless, we’ve always said that we would never let a boy come between us, even if he was the boy – so I want us to just forget all of this, and hopefully we can be friends again.

Rose x

PS Jesus Christ you only have four hours left of being 21! You’re getting so old!

I had dinner with Mum and Dad, feeling oddly like I was a teenager again, but in a good way; it was nice to forget, even just for a few minutes, that I had so much responsibility and worries in my life. By the time Dad was clearing the plates, Megan had replied. Her letter was mostly what I expected, and it had made me smile;

Rosie,

I’m so relieved, you have no bloody idea how much I’ve been worrying about this! I’m so sorry for what I did, it was only because I care about you so much – but yes, let’s put an end to it. Thank you also, Rose, for healing Allie’s arm today; I swear to Merlin I almost stabbed Steven in the eyes when he told me what had happened so thanks for fixing my baby girl up. Yes, tomorrow is sadly my birthday; don’t you think 22 is an awfully boring age? Anyway, we’re having a few people over for dinner and obviously you have to come. I hope to see you there, and I’m so glad we’re talking!

Love, Megs xxx

I went to bed reasonably early that night; feeling tired from work and then moving out of the flat. For the first time in six months, I did not lie and think about Mark, nor Scorpius; instead I considered what I might buy Megan for her birthday, and who was likely to be there tomorrow night.

Of course, predictably, that brought me onto wondering whether Scorpius would be there; and I found myself drifting off to sleep, deep in thought over my ex.

That night, I dreamt of being back at Hogwarts, when things were so much more simple and easy, that it was almost unfair.

*

I glanced at my watch nervously, as I waited for someone to answer the door. I was more than a little bit late, which would mean I’d be making an entrance; great. By the time I’d left work, gone shopping for Megan’s present (perfume), gone home, taken a shower and got ready, checked Dad’s blood pressure and made my way over to Megan and Steven’s house in south London, I was horribly pushed for time.

Steven answered with a grin and welcomed me in, kissing me on the cheek. “I’m really sorry Rose,” He said, taking my coat. “But you should know, I completely didn’t think and invited Scorpius when I ran into him at work. I’m really sorry.”

“Oh,” I said, “Don’t worry about it, Stevie, it’s fine.” I muttered, as he led me into the dining room where everyone was waiting.

“Rose!” Exclaimed Megan excitedly, running over to hug me tightly. I squeezed her back, all anger and hostility completely forgotten. “You are so tanned! You look amazing!” She said, smiling.

“Happy Birthday!” I said, handing her the gift. “Sorry I’m late.”

“Oh don’t be daft,” She said, waving her hand. “I love your dress by the way.”

“Thanks,” I laughed. “It’s one of your own designs.”

“I know!” She said, giggling. “That’s why I like it so much.”

I smiled and then went to take a seat at the busy table. It was mainly the old crowd; Megan, Stevie, Al, Dom, Scorpius and of course Allie. Also there were Megan’s friends Julie and Frankie from work. I was surprised to see Frankie sitting beside Albus looking very friendly.

I slid into a seat between Dominique and Julie, giving Scorpius a civil nod, and was about to say hello to Dom when I felt a light tug on my leg. I ducked down underneath the table to see Allie; crouched under it, grinning madly at me.

“Hello Missy!” I whispered. “What are you doing down here?”

“I’m hiding!” She whispered back.

“Why?”

“Because Mummy wants to make me eat yucky vegetables,” She told me, wrinkling her face in dislike. “I hate them!”

“They’re very good for you,” I told her, the Healer in me coming out. “You should try them, they’re quite nice.”

She shook her head. “No way Aunt Rose! Only Mummy makes me eat them, when she isn’t here Daddy lets me eat ice-cream and jelly!”

I laughed. “Okay, well why don’t you come out and sit with me and Auntie Dom?”

She nodded and crawled out from between our chairs, and came back a second later dragging her pink, plastic “Princess Chair” with her. We all squeezed up a bit to let her in beside us and we grinned down at her, Dom playing with a strand of her hair.

After eating a delicious meal (Megan’s Mum had made it all so the only thing she had to do was heat the three courses; despite having found success in every other aspect of their rushed maturing, cooking was one thing Stevie and Megan hadn’t really mastered) we all sang happy birthday to Megan. After she blew out the candles, Steven announced it was time for Allie to go to bed, which of course resulted in a screaming match.

“I don’t want to go Daddy!” She shouted. “I want to stay at the party!”

“It’s not a party, Allie.” Said Steven, tiredly. “And you’re going!”

“No!” She yelled, defiantly.

“Allie it is way past your bed time, get up those stairs now!” He said, taking her hand which she yanked away. All the commotion attracted the attention of Megan, who had been chatting to Julie at the other end of the table.

Megan gave Allie her sternest look and spoke in a firm voice. “Allison Rose Finnegan,” She said, strongly. “You do what Daddy tells you and go to bed now!”

Allie glared at her and Megan raised her eyebrows, as if daring Allie to argue back. I was impressed with how well she was holding up; if Megan had given me that look I would have been shitting myself.

“Fine!” Allie shouted, finally. “But I want Aunt Rose to take me!”

I laughed as Megan and Steven rolled their eyes in frustration. “It’s fine,” I said, getting up. “I’ll take her,” I told them, taking Allie’s hand.

I led her upstairs and fifteen minutes later I was tucking her into bed, teeth brushed and hair plaited. She still looked angry about having to go to bed, and I smiled at her frowning face.

“Don’t frown,” I told her. “You’ll get wrinkles.”

“I don’t care,” She said.

“You will when you’re twenty and you look like a forty-year old!” I joked. “Allie that was a bit naughty to shout at your Mummy and Daddy like that.”

Allie looked sorry, her lower lip pouting. “You wouldn’t make me go to bed Aunt Rose,” She said, her brow furrowed.

“Yes I would,” I assured her. “You got to stay up past your bedtime, because it’s your Mummy’s birthday, but it’s late now.”

“When is your birthday?” She asked me, quietly.

“April,” I replied.

“If you have a party, can I come?”

“Definitely,” I said, smiling. “Now do you have a story, or do I have to make one up?”

She grinned. “We’re reading this one,” She said, pulling a book out from under her pillow.

“Okay,” I said, sitting on the edge of the bed. I had only read a couple of lines of Babbity Rabbity, when her breathing slowed and her eyes flickered shut. I smiled at my god-daughter, placed a kiss on her forehead and switched off the light, leaving her room bathed in the soft, pink light of her night light in the corner.

Returning downstairs, I found everyone to have consumed a considerable amount of wine, with the exception of Steven, who was on “parenting duty” and Scorpius, who Al had told me was keeping Stevie company. Great man, that one, sure he’ll crash your wedding but he stays sober to keep people company.

At half-one I decided to leave; I wasn’t drinking either and I’d had enough of the awkwardness between Scorpius and me. I went upstairs to use the bathroom and then came out to make my way back downstairs, when I found him waiting for me.

His face looked tortured though his stormy grey eyes, as always, betrayed no emotion. I looked back at him for what felt like an hour, before sighing. “Can I help you?”

“We need to talk,” He said, quietly.

“No we don’t” I replied. “I’m going.”

“Please,” He replied, catching my arm. “Just five minutes of your time.”

I nodded reluctantly, though I wasn’t really sure why I was agreeing, when all of my instincts were screaming at me that this was a mistake as he led us to the conservatory, where we could speak privately.

“Okay, so talk,” I said to break the silence.

“I’m sorry,” He muttered. I nodded; knowing the importance of this. One of Scorpius Malfoy’s many annoying traits was his inability to apologise for anything; so on the rare occasion that he dished one out it was a big deal and you knew he meant it.

“I shouldn’t have done things that way,” He continued. “Don’t get me wrong, I don’t regret the reasoning, but I should have handled it much better.”

“Yes you should have,” I replied. “But it can’t be changed now.”

He nodded back, but frowned. “Why do you always do that?”

“What?”

“You always forgive everyone for stuff they really shouldn’t have done. You should be so angry at me, I mean I think I’d prefer it if you-”

“If I what?” I demanded. “Told you that you’re an inconsiderate arsehole? I’m pretty sure you already know that! Tell you how angry I am? You probably know that too!” My anger was boiling up inside me, and the control I’d worked so hard on all night was gone. 

“I used to think of you as someone who could never hurt me!” I shouted, tearfully. “And I never thought you would screw things up for me any more than you did when you left! But miraculously enough, Scorpius, you’ve outdone yourself again!” 

“Don’t bring up the past!” He argued, angry too now. “If my leaving bothered you so much, then maybe you should have stopped me!” 

“Stopped you?” I repeated, incredulously. “You tell me you basically hate our life together and want nothing more to do with me, and that you’re leaving for Cardiff without me – and I’m supposed to try to stop you?” 

“You should have!” He said. “I was messed up, I wasn’t thinking straight and you should have stopped me!”

“I can’t believe you’re actually blaming me for this!” I exclaimed, shaking my head. “You were the one who chose to leave!”

“Yeah well like I said, maybe you should have fought for me!” He said. “Oh but of course, I forgot, you were too busy falling into bed with someone else and getting engaged!” 

“Stop it,” I said in a low, furious voice. “You don’t get to judge me, Scorpius.” 

“Yes I do!” He argued, defiantly. “This is what we do Rose! We argue about these stupid things because we’re both too stubborn to let it go, until eventually we let it go and make-up!”

“No,” I said. “That’s what we did, Scorpius. Not anymore, and that was your doing.” 

I turned to leave and gasped. Megan, Dom, Al, and Stevie were standing there, looking astounded. We hadn’t even noticed them come out to see what was going on, absorbed as we were.

“I’m sorry,” I said to them. I stepped inside from the conservatory, and found myself stopping dead as Scorpius spoke once more; 

“You know what this means, Rose,” He said, and I could tell he was smiling. I didn’t answer and he elaborated, still with a smile in his voice. “You taking the time to stand here and yell at me; it means you still care.” 

I shook slightly, but did not turn back to look at him. Megan gave me a sympathetic look as I walked away to find my wand and bag and disapparate home. 

So much for rolling with the punches, eh? 


*

A/N Reviews make me smile!!!

Chapter 16: Six Months Later
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Hi again! Okay so I've introduced a bit of a lapse in time with this chapter which I hope you will be happy enough with, personally I feel its refreshing plus it was needed for the direction which I'm planning to take this story! Enjoy!

*

 

As the last days of November disappeared, the cold weather came in its entirety and by the time we were celebrating Christmas, things had both changed a lot, and stayed completely the same.

I hadn’t seen or heard from Scorpius since Megan’s birthday, and I was okay with that; as I had promised I was focusing on myself and my family, friends and career. I was pretty sure that having a boyfriend, be it Mark, or Scorpius or someone completely new, wouldn’t be good for me right now.

Albus had started seeing Megan’s friend Frankie not long after the party and by the time we brought in the New Year they were a real and exceptionally close couple. I spent most of the holidays with Hugo, who was home from Hogwarts for three weeks; he promised me that he would complete his final year there and get his NEWTs, even if he didn’t plan on using them. His trip home had also given me the chance to hear some of his new songs, and he happily told me the new name for his band; The Roses.

Meanwhile Mum and Dad were the same as ever, and Dad had gotten used to the implementations of his diabetes. James had managed to recover from the grief of losing the baby, though he hadn’t had any contact from Beth since the letter. He had thrown himself into Quidditch, and had brought the Canons their greatest victories in history over the past few months.

Much like him, I threw myself into work. There was nothing more rewarding than my career as a Healer; the satisfaction of knowing I had saved someone’s life was indescribable, and it made me so happy I had worked so hard back at school to achieve it. I found myself spending most of my time with Dominique, who along with James was the only other single person in my life. She was looking forward to a steadily more and more heavily pregnant Victoire having the baby, who Nana Molly was excitedly knitting for.

The first cold and depressing months of the year slipped by quickly, busy as we all were, and by the time the sun had started to shine again and my birthday came around with the first signs of spring, the scars of my broken heart had faded along with my tan from the Bahamas. Six months to the day of my wedding, I felt like myself again; my friends and family had been right, these things just take time.

“I love it, Mum, thanks!” I said, fastening the gold necklace she and Dad had given me earlier this evening for my 22nd birthday. “How do I look?” I asked her, turning from my mirror to face her.

“Will you roll your eyes if I say you are beautiful?” She asked me, leaning against my bedroom door.

“Yes!” I laughed, smoothing the fabric of my fitted, dark grey dress. I glanced at my watch and grimaced. “Come on,” I said. “We better get over there,”

Mum smiled. “It’s nice that you’re doing this,” She told me. “I know you didn’t want a big fuss, but we all know there’s no telling James once he gets an idea into his head.”

I nodded. James had insisted, without budging, that he and I have a joint party for our birthdays; he had turned twenty-three yesterday. Despite my best efforts, he had organised the whole thing, which was to be held at Aunt Ginny and Uncle Harry’s house. I had agreed on two conditions; it had to be a family thing, rather than a drunken thing, and neither Scorpius nor Mark be invited.

He had agreed much to the majority of the family’s disappointment; none of us could honestly really be bothered with it, but here we were regardless; me in my dress, Mum dressed smartly in a dress of her own, and Dad waiting grumpily at the door for us, having been forced into a suit by my Mum.

“Bloody James bloody Potter,” Grumbled Dad, as we piled into his car; we would have normally just apparated, but this provided us with an excuse if we wanted to leave, Dad driving meant he couldn’t drink and therefore meant we could leave earlier.

We arrived at the Potter’s after a short drive, and appeared to be one of the last to arrive. Dad knocked on the door, giving us a fearful look.

Not that we didn’t love family parties; on the contrary they were always brilliant. But a party organised by James Sirius Potter? That was something we were wary of to say the least.

Aunt Ginny answered and grinned at the three of us. “Happy Birthday Rose!” She exclaimed, hugging me.

“Thanks,” I grinned, as we entered. “Okay tell me honestly, has he stuck to my conditions?”

She smiled. “Scorpius Malfoy is not here, nor is Mark Oliver. It is a family thing, but a number of the family are already a little tipsy.”

I shrugged. “I can handle that.”

“Ginny, are we over-dressed?” Asked Dad, looking around the empty hallway. “Hermione made me wear this bloody pain in the arse of a suit!”

Mum rolled her eyes at him and Aunt Ginny laughed. “Shut up,” She said. “It’s only because she wants you to look decent, you idiot. If it were up to you you’d be wearing dungarees or something ridiculous like that.”

I laughed as I led them into the kitchen, where everyone seemed to have congregated; my Dad and Ginny were grown adults, proud parents with successful careers – but together they were still a pair of squabbling siblings.

“Rosie!” Shouted James excitedly, rushing over to me. “Happy Birthday, cuz!”

“Thanks James,” I laughed. “Oh and you too! I have something for you,” I said, handing him the gift bag which contained the shirt I had bought him.

“Oh me too!” He said, grabbing an envelope from the kitchen counter. I opened it and thanked my cousin for the thirty galleons. “I didn’t know what to get you,” He explained. “So I thought I’d just let you pick something yourself, that way you’ll like it.”

I was greeted and wished a Happy Birthday by the rest of the guests; who I had to admit were proof James had actually organized this thing properly. All here at the Potter home were the Potters obviously, Nana Molly, Uncles Bill, Percy, and George, Aunts Fleur, Audrey, and Angelina. Representing our generation were a glowing Victoire and Teddy, Dom, who had hugged me and given me a gorgeous handbag, and Fred and Roxy. Also here were Megan and Stevie, Frankie, who was holding hands with Albus, and a few of the Canons, including Robbie, Mark’s older brother.

We were treated to a mouth-watering three courses from Nana Molly, and then dispersed into the living room, with our parents all filing into the dining room. I’d made a fair bit of cash off of my many Aunts and Uncles, including Uncle Bill who had given me a whopping fifty galleons – he’d always been good to me and I was very grateful.

I found myself talking to Albus and Frankie, who were so loved up it was really quite cute. I hadn’t seen this pairing coming at all; Albus was of course immature, annoying, and yet unbelievably smart and incredibly decent.

But I had never thought of Frankie as the kind of girl he would go for; she was very beautiful; tall and tanned, with dark brown hair chopped into a sassy bob and striking features, so it was easy to see why he was attracted to her. However she was also very head-strong and independent; the kind of girl we all wished we were; she was funny, charismatic, and very confident – a kind of cocky that was somehow adorable. Francessca “Frankie” Simmons was a far cry from the shy but loveable Beth and Grace of his past.

What was more, Harry and Ginny seemed to love Frankie with a genuineness that they had never quite showed for Beth or Grace; I think they adored her for her ability to give Al as good as she got. James too got on well with her, they had a kind of banter going on, but Albus didn’t have to worry about history repeating itself; Frankie had informed us all that her best friend, Sarah, was a former conquest of James, and therefore he held no attraction for her.

“So how are you, Rosie?” Asked Albus as he took a sip from his Firewhisky.

“I’m good,” I smiled. “I’m super excited about Vic having the baby!”

“Oh me too!” He agreed, grinning. “It’s been too long since we had a new member of the family added.”

“Definitely,” I said. “And it’s going to be pretty funny watching Teddy and Vic attempt to handle being parents.”

“I’ll be sitting in the front row with my popcorn,” He joked.

“Rose,” Said Frankie, grinning at Albus. “Al wants a fake tan.”

I stared between the two of them and Frankie nodded. I burst out laughing and she joined in, while Al glared at the pair of us.

“What do you mean you want a fake tan?” I gasped, clutching my sides.

Albus refused to look at me, and I demanded Frankie explain. “He was saying the other day how he looks so pale, and he misses the tan he got when you lot were in the Bahamas…so he asked me what I thought of those Muggle spray tans.”

“Albus Potter,” I laughed. “You are an idiot!”

“That was my reaction, once I could stop laughing,” Joked Frankie, while Al scowled at his girlfriend.

“You said you wouldn’t tell anyone!” He said, in a moody voice.

“Yeah right!” She laughed. “As if I’m going to keep something that good to myself!” She said, mussing his hair playfully.

I laughed and then excused myself, leaving them to enjoy some time together. I made my way over to where James and Robbie, Mark’s brother and James’ fellow Canon and friend, were standing chatting. Taking a deep breath as I approached, I noted that three months ago I could never have done this.

“Hi Robbie!” I said, smiling from him to James.

“Hey Rose,” He said, in a friendly voice. “Happy Birthday!”

“Thanks, how are you?” I asked him, while James watched us carefully. 

“I’m good thanks, and you?”

“Good,” I smiled. “So…how’s Mark?”

Robbie didn’t look awkward, but he didn’t look one hundred percent comfortable either. But I had to do this; I couldn’t ignore my almost brother-in-law and he couldn’t ignore me.

“He’s doing well,” He answered finally. “He’s still staying down south with Mum and Dad, but I think he’s thinking about moving back to London.”

“Oh that’s good,” I said. “I really should owl him, actually, I’m always meaning to.”

“Oh shit!” Said Robbie. “That reminds me,” He pulled a slightly crushed looking white envelope from his jeans pocket and handed it to me. “He sent you this.”

“Thanks,” I muttered, looking at it. Choosing not to open it in front of them, I pocketed it. “I’m going to find Megan,” I told them. “It was nice to see you, Robbie.”

“You too,” He smiled.

I met Victoire whilst looking for Megan, who was sitting with Teddy, both of them looking very content.

“Hi, you two,” I said, smiling at them. “You both look so beautiful!”

Teddy laughed. “We look beautiful?”

“Yes!” I grinned. “You can practically see your happiness, it’s so obvious. Gorgeous,” I said, putting my hands on Vic’s massive stomach. “How’s my little cousin in there?”

“Restless,” Victoire said, rolling her eyes.

“Not long now,” I commented, grinning.

“Five weeks,” She agreed. “I’m getting nervous! It’s a good thing I have two very accomplished Healers as cousins!”

I smiled; between us Albus and I had handled all of Vic’s check-ups ourselves, so all the family could be assured she was receiving the right care.

“Are you feeling okay?” I asked her.

“Fine,” She said, and Teddy nodded. “Just tired.”

“Yeah that’s normal,” I smiled. I chatted to them for a few more minutes, before leaving them to talk to a very excitable Nana Molly, who literally couldn’t wait for the new addition.

I went off in search of my best friend, who I found sitting on the stairs talking to Dominique.

“Hi,” I said to them, sitting on the stair below and leaning against their legs. “I have a birthday card here from Mark,”

“Really?” Asked Megan in a surprised voice.

“Yeah,” I replied. “Robbie brought it.”

“Well open it then!” Said Dom, eagerly.

I smiled around at them and then slit it open. It was a yellow, birthday card, most likely bought from a Muggle card shop. I opened it and read Mark’s familiar neat handwriting, reading it aloud to my friends.

Rose,

Happy Birthday. I hope you have a fantastic day, and that you are happy. Please pass along my regards to your Mum and Dad, and the rest of the family; I miss everyone, you especially. Anyway, like I said, Happy Birthday.

Love Mark

“There you go,” Said Megan quietly.

I nodded. “There you go”

“It was nice of him to send you a card, wasn’t it?” Said Dom, smiling. “And he sounds happy, I think.”

“I hope so,” I said. “Mark deserves to be happy.”

“Definitely,” Dom agreed.

“Rose?” Said Fred, leaning round the banister to speak to us. “The cake’s lit; they want you in the dining room.”

I grinned at him and we followed him to the dining room, where everyone was congregated around the table, on which sat a huge birthday cake decorated with white and lemon icing. It was clearly made be Nana Molly and so was guaranteed to be delicious. I smiled down at it as I was ushered to stand in front of it next to James; round the burning candles Nana Molly had piped;

Happy Birthday to James and Rose on your 23rd and 22nd Birthdays

Everyone began to sing while James grinned at me. We both laughed as they squashed “James and Rose” into the name part of the song and then we leant down to blow out the candles, Dad holding my long hair out of the way of the candles. They all cheered as we blew them out and Uncle Percy flicked his wand at the light, bathing the room in a golden glow once more.

“Speech!” Shouted Dom, grinning annoyingly at us. I raised my eyebrows at James and he laughed, clearing his throat.

“Well thanks very much,” Said James. “I’m honoured you all love me so much to throw this party just for me!”

We all laughed while I punched him in the arm playfully, declining to make a speech of my own and instead echoing James’ thanks. James and I had just started to fight over who should get to cut the cake first, when there was a sound of a fork being tapped against a glass. It was Al, who was smiling broadly though looking a little nervous. He had his arm around Frankie.

“Um…while everyone’s making speeches, well…I have some news.”

“What is it?” Asked Uncle Harry, curiously.

Albus smiled again. “Well basically we’re eh,” She looked around at Frankie and I stared at them incredulously. What was he trying to say?

“You're getting married!” Guessed Aunt Ginny excitedly.

“No that’s not it!” Laughed Al, as Frankie smiled in amusement. He shook his head and took a deep breath.

“I’m leaving,” He said finally. “We both are - for three months. We’re going travelling for the summer – we…well we leave in two weeks.”

“What?” Whispered Uncle Harry, frowning. “Are you serious?”

“We’re going to see the world,” Frankie explained. “And obviously three months is a really long time but…well the world’s big.” She shrugged. “What do you all think?”

We all stared at them, slightly in shock. It was a great idea in theory, but there were so many questions; first and foremost how exactly Al planned to leave his job for three months, and how they would afford it too. I was about to ask Al about work when Victoire interrupted.

“I need to go,” She said suddenly.

“Okay, Vic,” Laughed James. “So Al’s leaving the country, I know it’s a shock but you don’t have to leave!”

“No!” She said, shakily, grabbing Teddy’s hand and looking scared. “I think the baby’s coming!”

We all gasped while Victoire shot a terrified look at Teddy, who looked like he was going to collapse.

“Oh my Christ!” Uttered Aunt Fleur, her face pale.

Albus and I looked at each other in shock, before everything all started happening at once; the family surrounded itself around Victoire, Dom swearing loudly, Fleur gibbering away in French, Uncle Bill trying to calm them all down.

“Oh Merlin!” Shouted Nana Molly angrily. “Considering Albus and Rose are the only Healers shouldn’t we let them at her?”

Everyone muttered their agreements and stood aside, James looking as if this was some exciting soap opera. “Right you are Mum,” Said Uncle Bill hastily. “Move everyone!”

Al and I rushed over to Vic, who looked as though she was in pain. She stared up at us with wide, desperate eyes and I grabbed her hand just because she looked so scared.

“Tell us what you feel Vic,” Said Al urgently.

“I think I’m having contractions,” She muttered, scrunching her eyes closed and holding her stomach, while Teddy looked fearful.

“She was complaining about it this morning,” He told us. “But we were sure it was just Braxton Hicks…she’s not due for another five weeks!”

“Oh God it hurts!” She moaned, grabbing my arm.

“Okay, we’ve got to get you to St Mungo’s,” I said firmly.

“Am I having it then?” Vic demanded. “It’s too soon! I can’t be!”

“You’re early, Vic, it happens,” Said Al. “Come on, we’ve got to go. Uncle Ron, can you drive us?”

“Why can’t she apparate?” Asked Dom shakily.

“Women can’t apparate or travel by floo while in labour,” Al reminded her.

“Let’s go,” Said Dad, pulling his keys out of his pocket.

“We’ll meet you at the hospital, sweetheart,” Said Uncle Bill, looking slightly nauseous at the prospect of becoming a Grandpa. 

“Do you want your Mum to come in the car with us?” Asked Teddy quietly, rubbing her back.

Victoire shook her head. “No,” She said at once. “I want Rose; she’s a Healer…Rose.”
“Let’s go,” I said, leading her and Teddy out to the car with Dad.

The twenty minute car-ride to St Mungo’s was very stressful; from the closeness of her contractions, I suspected Vic was pretty far along. I wished she had mentioned something before, but she kept saying she hadn’t wanted to worry anyone and she was sure it would pass. Neither of them could get their heads around the idea that their baby was coming over a month early, and like Vic kept saying, neither of them had done this before.

“Rose will you be able to deliver it?” She asked me as we rushed into St Mungo’s, Teddy and Dad supporting her at either side.

“No,” I said apologetically. “I’m not working, and they have experts who deliver babies Vic; but don’t worry you’re in good hands.”

Within minutes Teddy and Victoire were rushed off to a delivery room and the entire family were left waiting outside. After a few hours, some of them went home; Megan and Stevie, for example had to go and pick up Allie, and Uncle Percy and Aunt Audrey who were working early. Al and I stayed, as we were able to get more answers out of the Healers as to how she was doing, but Frankie went home, the news of their departure hanging awkwardly.

Uncle George, Harry and Dad sat with Uncle Bill, trying to keep him calm; he was worrying about Victoire. Meanwhile Nana Molly refused to return to The Burrow; she insisted on being here for the birth of her first great-grandchild. Dominique stayed with Mum, James, Albus and I, pacing nervously. Aunt Fleur was in with Victoire, along with Teddy.

“Do you think the baby will be okay?” Dom said, nervously, looking at myself and Albus.

“Of course it will,” Said Al bracingly, but Dom shook her head.

“Don’t lie to me,” She said. “It is five weeks early, what does that mean?”

I sighed. “It probably will be okay,” I told her honestly. “Five weeks isn’t too bad. Chances are he or she will just be a little underweight, and a bit undernourished, but it’ll be fine.”

Dominique nodded, glancing fearfully at her Dad, who tried to nod encouragingly at her. I felt for them, as the whole family had been so eagerly awaiting the new arrival. I was glad that Victoire had asked for her Mum and not me; having witnessed Megan give birth it wasn’t exactly something I wanted to do again, it wasn’t easy to see someone you love in such pain, even if I was a Healer.

Another two hours followed, a very short labour, when Teddy came bursting out looking absolutely exhausted but ecstatic at the same time. He beamed at Uncle Bill and Dom, nodding.

“It’s a boy!” He exclaimed. “A baby boy.”

“Oh my goodness!” Muttered my Mum, smiling widely.

“Is he okay?” Demanded Dom.

“He’s fine, they’re both fine. He’s a little small, but the Healer says he’s going to be fine,” He grinned, and looked at Nana Molly, who was smiling tearfully. “We’ve named him Arthur.”

“Oh,” She gasped, tears rolling down her cheeks. Dad went over to her and put his arm around her.

Teddy nodded. “Arthur Remus Lupin, after the great-grandfather and grandfather he won’t get to meet, but will hear about everyday.”

“Oh that’s perfect,” Said Dom, rushing over to hug him. He embraced her tightly, before releasing her.

“I better get back to my wife and son,” He said, grinning from ear to ear. “Oh Rose?”

I looked up, smiling at him.

“Little Arthur’s going to love sharing his birthday with his big cousin Rose!”

I laughed and nodded. “I’m sure he will.”

*

Five days later, Albus, James and I had apparated over to Teddy and Victoire’s to see them and the baby. Victoire looked great, she was a complete natural with Arthur and Teddy already adored being a Dad.

“Do you want to hold him?” She asked us. I nodded right away and she pressed the tiny, sleeping baby into my arms. He was very light, but that was only because he was early. He slowly opened his eyes and frowned at me, wondering who I was.

“Hello, little man,” I cooed. “What’s this? You’ve got to go and steal the limelight on my birthday?”

Victoire and Teddy laughed. “He clearly likes to be in the spotlight.” Joked Vic.

“He’s gorgeous,” I told them. He was the perfect combination of the beautiful part-veela and handsome metamorphmagus. “Has he shown any signs?”

“Just watch him,” Said Teddy.

I looked down at him and watched as his silvery-blonde hair turned to exactly my shade of red as he stared up at me. I laughed in affection.

“I want to hold him!” Said James, holding out his arms. 

“Has Louis been to see him?” I asked Vic and she nodded.

“Professor Flitwick let him come yesterday. He was so cute with his little nephew,” She said, smiling. “We’ve asked him and Dom to be godparents.”

“Oh that’s nice,” I said, grinning. “Dominique will be thrilled.”

“Yeah she is,” She said, smiling.

After getting our fill of adoring Arthur, the three of us left and went for a Butterbeer in the Leaky Cauldron. As soon as we were sitting with a drink, James rounded on Al.

“So you still buggering off and leaving us?”

Albus laughed. “Yeah I am. I talked it over with Mum and Dad, explained that this wasn’t just some spontaneous thing. I’ve really thought it over and it’s what we both really want to do.”

“Well I’m thrilled for you,” I told him sincerely. “But what about St Mungo’s?”

“I’m taking three months unpaid leave,” He explained. “And its on the agreement that if someone else is available to take my job, then I’ll lose it.”

“And you’re okay with that?”

He shrugged. “My job will be there when I get back; you know what it’s like in there, St Mungo’s are screaming out for more people to do the training.” He was right; the number of people going into Healer training these days was falling rapidly.

“I suppose,” I said. “But how will you afford it?”
 
“I’m using my building society money; I haven’t touched a penny of it and it’s built up over the years. What else could I spend it on that would be better than this?”

James laughed. “It’s just a little out of the blue, Al. I mean you’re not exactly the type of guy who ups and leaves his job to go travelling for four months! I mean that’s more like…”

“You?” I joked.

Al laughed. “I know but…well I wanted to do something really great for me. Like I’ve always been sensible and stuff and this is really for me to get some independence. And plus Frankie really wants to go too.”

I nodded. “Well that’s great.” I said sincerely. The smile slipped away from my face as I pondered the idea of three months without my cousin and best boy friend. “What will I do without you?”

Al smiled sympathetically. “I’ll miss you all, especially you too. But I bet it’ll fly by! Come on, aren’t you happy for me?”

“We are,” Insisted James. “It’s just that nobody will miss you as much as me and Rose will, that’s all.”

He nodded, and I could tell he felt the same way about us. “I know,” He said. “By the way Rose?”

“Yeah?” I asked, smiling.

“You owl me the second you get it on with Scorp, you hear?” He said, grinning cheekily at me while James laughed.

I rolled my eyes; I would miss this. 

*


A/N What do you think? Lots of new information I know! By the way on a completely different note can anyone recommend me any good other hpff stories to read? It's ages since I've found one I can really get into, so I'd love to know what you're all reading on here! Anything goes, with the exception of Dramione (Yuck!) Go on ahead and feel free to suggest your own stories, I'll be really grateful if I find a great story through one of you! Okay rambling over, thoughts?? x

Chapter 17: Hello Goodbye
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Disclaimer: Harry Potter and all associated characters, plots etc are property of JK Rowling - bow down to the master people! Enjoy!
*

It’s one of those really annoying things; when you want time to go fast, be it because you’re going through a difficult time in your life, or are looking forward to something, it always drags by. Similarly, if you’re absolutely loving life, it has a nasty habit of flying by right before your eyes.

That was to be said for the month of April, which sped past so quickly I couldn’t quite believe it. Before anyone knew it, it was time for Al and Frankie’s leaving party, and that meant May, which meant it was nearly summer, which meant it was over a year since Mark had proposed. I couldn’t believe how my life had come so full circle in what felt like such a short space of time.

I wasn’t the only one who was wishing time would stop all together; summer in the Finnegan household meant the last few months of Allie being at home everyday; she was starting at Muggle Primary School in August.

“She’s just a baby,” Megan complained to me as we walked through the warm, bright Muggle shopping centre, Allie in the middle of us, holding a hand each.

I smiled from my best friend, to my god-daughter, who was totally immersed in staring at a toy-shop window we were passing. This was a little bit of an exaggeration; Allie would be turning five next month, the normal age for children to start school.

“She’s nearly five,” I laughed.

Megan pouted sadly. “She’s only a baby,” She said again quietly.

“I’ll be fine Mummy!” Allie said, grinning up at her Mum. “I can’t wait for school!”

“See,” I said, ruffling Allie’s hair. “That’s the attitude you want, Megs.”

“Here we are,” She said, looking slightly resigned. We entered the brightly-coloured shop, where Megan had been recommended for Allie’s new school uniform.

“Okay,” She said, as we entered. “Allie, do you remember what you need?”

Allie nodded happily. “A grey skirt, and white shirts, and a blazer, and a grey cardigan for when it’s cold, and smart black shoes.” She recited, having memorised the list with the help of her Daddy, who was far more positive about his daughter starting school than Megan.

“You’re forgetting one thing,” I told her, raising my eyebrows.

Allie frowned for a second, until her eyes lit up in recognition. She screwed her features up into a look of dislike she had inherited from Steven.

“A tie,” She muttered, looking put-out. “Why do I have to wear a tie? Girls don’t wear ties; boys wear ties, like my Daddy and my Granddads and Uncle Al!”

“Girls wear ties to school,” Megan informed her, as we made our way over to the skirts first. “And when you go to Hogwarts you wear a special tie for your house.”

Allie’s face suddenly lit up and she grinned. Like most magical children, she was completely obsessed by the idea of Hogwarts.

“What houses are there again?” She asked us.

“Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff and Slytherin,” Said Megan, holding a pleated grey skirt against Allie to measure the height.

Allie tugged my arm and I looked down at her. “What house were you and Mummy and Daddy in, Aunt Rose?”

“We were all in Gryffindor,” I told her, smiling. “And so was Auntie Dom.”

“Will I be in Gryffindor?” She asked, looking hopeful.

“Maybe,” Said Megan. “Nobody knows. It doesn’t matter what house you’re in anyway, they’re all good in their own ways.”

“What house was Scorfias in?”

Scorpius was in Slytherin, so was Uncle Albus.” Megan said, rolling her eyes at my silent response.

Allie seemed to consider this. “Slytherin must be good then,” She decided. “But I think Gryffindor is the best, that’s where I want to be.”

Megan and I grinned at each other, and I secretly hoped Allie would be a Gryffindor come her sorting in six years time; in fact I was about one hundred percent sure she would be.

“Allie I found your tie!” Said Megan, who was scanning the glass case which displayed all the school ties for the local areas. Allie and I went over to see the royal blue tie, with thin silver, diagonal stripes.

“Yuck!” Said Allie. “I’m going to look like a boy!”

“No you won’t,” Laughed Megan. “Come on we can get you silver and blue ribbons to match.”

I noticed that Megan’s smiles for her daughter did not quite reach her eyes, and I realised then just how difficult she must be finding this; from the age of seventeen, Megan’s life had been all about Allie. From that young age, just a sixth year, a schoolgirl, she had been with Allie; through the time when she hadn’t told anyone, till when I knew, to when she told Steven and he abandoned her, to her wedding; through all of it, the one person who was a part of her and there every step of the way was Allie – and now she would be losing her for six hours a day, five days a week. When I really thought about it, I couldn’t even believe Allie was starting school, so it must be ten times worse for Megan.

“Is Uncle Albus really going away?” She asked us after Megan had paid for the purchases and we were going to get Allie an ice-cream.

“Yeah,” Said Megan. “But just till the end of summer.”

“When I start school,” She said. “Where is he going?”

“Travelling,” I said. “He wants to see the world, so he and Frankie are going travelling together.”

“Will they get married?” She asked.

Megan laughed. “Maybe, one day. Who knows?”

“So if they do will they have a wedding?”

“Yeah,” Megan said, rolling her eyes at me. “You’ve got to have a wedding to get married, silly!”

“You had a wedding Aunt Rose,” She said. “But you didn’t get married.”

“That’s right,” I mumbled, awkwardly.

“Why didn’t you get married then?” She asked, frowning curiously.

“Um…well,” I stuttered. I looked desperately at Megan and she shrugged as if to say you’re on your own. “Sometimes people get confused Allie,” I said. “And they think that they want to get married when actually they don’t.”

“So you didn’t want to get married?”

“No I did!” I insisted. “But we – Mark and I…sometimes you can confuse feelings of deep affection for love and well…you know.”

Allie looked as though she didn’t have a clue what I was on about. Which she most likely didn’t. “So you didn’t love Mark?”

Megan smirked at me, clearly very proud of her daughter. “Well you see, I did love him and he loved me but we just rushed into things, Allie, we didn’t think about it properly and it was all too soon.”

Allie nodded. “Okay. So does that mean you might get married when you’ve thought about it properly?”

I sighed. “No, I’m not going to get married to Mark ever.”

“Oh,” She said. “Well I hope you get married to someone, Aunt Rose. I’d like to be flower girl again.”

I smiled at her, and didn’t say anything else. As the ice-cream parlour came into view Allie ran towards it and pressed her hands against the glass, trying to pick a flavour. Megan gave me an annoyingly knowing look and I shook my head. She laughed.

“Bravo,” She said. “That really was a first-class explanation for your four-year old god-daughter.”

“Shut it,” I muttered, as we reached Allie. “I don’t even understand my bloody love life, how the hell am I supposed to explain it to a four-year old?”

*

“You know I think I had it right back in sixth year,” Said Dom irritably, as she pulled a brush through her hair. “I think I will go lesbian.”

I laughed. “Yeah Dom, I’m sure you will.”

“Well why am I still bloody single?” She demanded.

“Because you’re so fussy that every half-decent guy who comes along you send away! Your standards are too high.”

She shrugged defiantly. “I won’t take some second-rate arsehole just because he’s available. I want someone perfect.”

“Believe me, if you got the perfect guy you’d think differently,” I told her. “I had him and I pushed him away, managing to convince him in the process that I was still in love with my very second-rate ex.”

“Well there you go then,” She said. “If that’s why I’m single why are you single?”

“That’s easy,” I smiled. “I’m the one with a failed attempt at marriage and an ex-boyfriend who makes me want to break his neck.”

Dominique grinned. “Well then why don’t you go out with someone different?”

I shrugged. “Maybe I don’t want to. And maybe I don’t want to completely rule out the miniscule possibility that I might just be totally and completely wrong about everything.”

Dom eyes me suspiciously. “Does that mean what I think it means?”

“What do you think it means?”

She grinned. “I think it means you are perhaps open to the idea that Scorpius might be the one for you. Do you think I might be right?”

I rolled my eyes. “I think we’re going to be late if we don’t move it now.”

She laughed and shook her head, as if to say I wasn’t fooling her. I dragged her downstairs and we apparated to The Leaky Cauldron, which Harry and Ginny had rented out to hold Al and Frankie’s leaving party. Dom and I were going together, considering neither of us had or particularly wanted dates.

The pub had been transformed into a beautiful staging area with cream lined tables and chairs and thick golden candles. Tom, the barman, had even dressed up for the event. The bar was about half-full when we got there, and Frankie and Al rushed over to us right away.

“I suppose I should say congratulations,” I said, hugging them both. “But I’ll miss you!”

“We’ll miss you too!” Said Frankie, holding Al’s hand.

 I smiled warmly at her. During their short, six-month relationship I’d made an effort to get to know Frankie; she’d been in the same year as us at Hogwarts, but a Ravenclaw so we only really knew of each other. None of us had socialised in the same circles as Frankie at school, and we’d never have guessed she’d be joining the family nearly five years later.

However, I hadn’t been left disappointed; Frankie had fit in so easily; it made us all sure she and Albus were destined for each other. They’d only been together for six months, but it felt like ten years; the way they were together, it just looked like a happy couple who’d been together forever. I was unwaveringly happy for my cousin.

To them I’d shown the upmost support of their decision to go, mainly because I knew what it was like to be so sure of something even when people were telling you otherwise; I’d faced a similar reaction when I told the family I was marrying Mark.

I caught sight of my parents talking with Harry and Ginny, and Dom and I went over to say hi. Mum and Dad greeted me with a hug even though they’d only left the house half an hour before me. They reminded me daily how much they loved having me back home again, and at twenty-two I was enjoying the freedom that came with my age, combined with the comfort of being with my family.

“How are you two?” Asked Aunt Ginny, smiling at Dominique and me.

“Good,” I said and Dom nodded. “How are you feeling about Al going tomorrow?”

Harry shrugged. “There’s not really much we can do, it’s what he wants. We just hope he’ll be careful and responsible.”

“Oh course he will,” Said Mum, nodding encouragingly. I glanced at Dom who pointedly looked at the floor.

“I told him provided he doesn’t come back with Frankie three months pregnant, everything’s fine,” Said Aunt Ginny, looking horrified at the thought. Mum gave her an understanding look which I knew meant she agreed.

“So how about you?” Harry asked. “You’ll miss him I bet!”

“Oh definitely!” I said and Dominique nodded in agreement.

“He’s our little baby cousin!” She exclaimed, smiling sadly. “And the third musketeer – who will we make fun of for getting sunburn now?”

Ginny nodded. “It’s only three months,” She reminded us. “He’ll be back before we know it.”

“Speak of the devil,” Muttered Dad as Albus came wandering over to us, sipping his drink happily.

“Talking about how much you’ll miss me then?” He asked, grinning.

“You’d like that wouldn’t you!” Laughed Harry, punching his son’s shoulder playfully.

Al laughed then looked at us. “Come mingle with the young ones,” He said. “They’re all here now and I swear if you stay here much longer you’ll start getting wrinkles.”

Al’s parents, Uncle and Aunt all laughed at him as he steered us away to the other side of the room where a large table consisted of our generation, who had all gathered to say goodbye to Al and Frankie. I noticed Frankie’s best friend, Sarah, being cornered by James. I laughed as I distinctly heard her complain “You never phoned me back you arsehole!” I saw Megan and Stevie, who had clearly just arrived and looked soaking wet.

“It’s coming down like crazy,” Said Stevie, shaking the wet out of his hair while Megan scowled at her drowned-looking appearance.

Dom laughed. “I guess we’re getting the April showers in May then?”

Megan smiled and glanced at me. “Have you seen your ex?”

“Which one?” I muttered, nervously. Megan raised her eyebrows in such a way that I knew she meant Scorpius. I sighed as she came over to Dom and me and grasped each of our arms.

“Apparently,” She said in a lowered voice. “Albus did invite Mark but he passed on the invitation; said he had too much work. I got all this from Steven.”

“Oh right,” Was all I said. “So where is he?”

“Scorpius?” She asked, and I nodded. “Over there,” She said, motioning to the busy table which housed all of our and Frankie’s friends.

I glanced around her and saw Scorpius sitting talking animatedly to Steven and James. He caught my eye and smiled. I looked back at Megan hastily.

“Smooth,” Whispered Dom, earning her an elbow in the ribs from me.

“Come on,” Said Megan, pulling us back to the table. “We need to be with Al and Frankie tonight.” 

The party was in full swing, full of all different kinds of celebrations; all the generations of Weasleys had gathered to see off Albus and Frankie, along with Frankie’s Mum and Dad who were mercifully getting on greatly with Harry and Ginny. Teddy and Victoire had come along with the baby, but only stayed for half an hour to wish Al well before getting home. Arthur was only two weeks old so they didn’t want him at the loud, busy party too long.

I found myself wedged in between my two adorably frustrating, favourite cousins; James and Al. We were currently, and very unsuccessfully, trying to convince Albus that we honestly weren’t going to miss him all that much. We were of course lying, and he didn’t believe us for a second.

“You just don’t realise how brilliant we are,” I said, rumpling his hair affectionately. “I really think you’re going to be suffering some serious withdrawal symptoms.”

“She’s dead on there, Al,” Said James seriously. “You’re never going to be able to manage it.”

He nodded. “It’s a travesty,” He joked and we all laughed.

It was then that Scorpius came over, carrying a pint for himself, Albus and James. He set them down in front of them, before leaving. I glanced at them, but before I’d had the chance to say anything at all he was back with a glass of something for me.

“I’d never forget your drink, Weasley.” He said, winking at me. I looked down at the table awkwardly, and I felt James tense beside me.

“So you going to miss me as much as these two then mate?” Asked Albus, clearly choosing to ignore the uncomfortable atmosphere around him.

Scorpius laughed. “Definitely. I’m just going to have to make do with Rose for company.”

I nodded but didn’t smile at his joke. This conversation was making me very uncomfortable.

Albus laughed. “I have instructed her to owl me when you two finally get back together.”

“Albus!” I exclaimed angrily.

“Sorry Rosie…I was just joking,” He said seriously.

“I wasn’t,” Said Scorpius. He wasn’t smiling either now. “So when do you think we’ll be sending that owl, Weasley?”

I set my drink, which I hadn’t taken a sip from, down onto the table and got up. I gave him a furious look before storming towards the door and out of the heaving pub, out onto the quiet street.

I leaned against the wall, breathing quickly. I felt an uncontrollable anger at Scorpius for being able to say those things to me. Megan and Steven, it appeared, had not been lying about the heavy rain. It was falling heavily, bouncing off the streets. I’d only been out here a few minutes and already my hair was starting to get heavier with wetness.

It didn’t take him long follow me, as I knew he would. What I didn’t expect however, was for him to grab me by the arm and pull me around the side of the building, to where it was mostly deserted. He stood several feet away from me and glared angrily.

“So what was that all about?” He demanded.

I frowned. “You need to ask?” I shouted. “How dare you say those things to me!”

“It was a joke Rose,” He muttered impatiently. “Why couldn’t you just laugh along with the rest of us?”

I felt anger boiling up to the surface and I worked hard to control it. “Because I didn’t find it funny!” I exclaimed. “You can’t just sit there and make comments like that as if we’re teenagers Scorpius! It’s not like that now and I won’t stand for it!”

The rain was pounding off of us, my hair now stuck to my head, soaking wet. I shivered, the thin material of the top I wore soaked through and sticking to my wet skin.

“You know what I’ve told you before and I’ll tell you again,” He said, angrily. “I’m not going to tiptoe around you like you might break! I don’t give a shit if I hurt your feelings Rose because if that’s what it takes to get you back I’ll do it! That’s just the way it is.”

When I answered, I spoke in a softer tone. “I can’t,” I muttered. “Scorpius I…I was meant to get married! And you came and you stopped it and then Mark left and everything is such a mess! And I don’t know what to do!”

He looked at me sadly, as the raindrops ran down my cheeks along with my tears. He took a step closer to me, and his expression was one so tender, one I’d only seen a few times in my life, in these charged moments of our history.

“Just follow your heart you mental case!” He said, laughing shortly. “That’s all you can do.”

I shook my head. “It’s not that easy,” I told him. “I’ve made such a mess of my life and it’s like everyone’s just waiting for me to screw up again.”

He shrugged. “Then don’t screw up this time.”

“It’s not me I’m worried about,” I reminded him.

Scorpius threw his arms wide at his sides in frustration, screwing his face up. His hands balled into fists as he looked at me with a look close to desperation. His hair too was plastered to his head, its blonde shade turning darker as a result. His jaw was set, his eyes pleading.

“Stop judging me on who I used to be, and give me a chance to show you who I am now!” He shouted. “Or go back to Mark, or forget the both of us! Just for once in your life Rose make a bloody decision and stick to it!” 

I felt tears welling up in my eyes, for our wasted chance, for the way we'd both made such a mess of something potentially wonderful. "It's just hard," I whispered. "It's all really hard." 

He nodded, and I knew he understood. "I understand that," He said quietly, so that I could hardly hear him above the pouring rain. "But you need to know Rose, I don't care how long you make me wait...I know I've messed you about and I know I don't deserve a second of your time but you know what I'm selfish! And I want you." 

He looked at me intensely, and I shivered. "And that's just the way it is."

With those words, in that moment, something triggered within me. And it was something that only Scorpius could do to me. 

As I acted on impulse, I felt all the barriers I’d put up slip away, one by one. The security system I’d put around my heart after he left me, the pretence that I didn’t need him like I needed air to breathe – all slipped away in that one glorious, incomprehensible moment.

And like so many times before and yet somehow never quite like this, I threw myself towards him and met my lips with his at last.

And if I could have sighed in sweet relief, I would have. His strong arms constricting around me, one hand on my waist, one in my hair, was the feeling I’d been missing for three and a half years. And his lips; the kiss I’d missed for so long, the kiss I’d dreamed of so many nights.

I was in ecstasy as I pressed myself as close to him as I could and he held onto me tighter, our lips meeting and parting like we’d been made to kiss each other forever.

And he kissed me back, groaning in his victory at last, and it all clicked into place. Not only had I been lying to everyone else, but I’d been lying to myself all these years. Of course I missed him; of course I still wanted to be with him.

Of course I loved him. And the only person I’d been fooling was myself.

Finally, our wet, slippery arms sliding against each other, we parted. He held my face in his two hands and his expression was one of wonder. And I knew mine was too. 

For having known someone for ten years, it was the first time I’d ever truly seen Scorpius Malfoy. I blinked as the rain continuously fell, dripping onto my eyelashes, running down my back.

Scorpius finally spoke, and it was no more than a whisper. “Wow,” Was all he could say, and I nodded in response.

“Wow.”

 In truth, ‘wow’ was pretty much the only expression that summed it all up.

I pressed my lips to his once more. 

*




A/N Thoughts???

Chapter 18: A Moment of Clarity
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Hi everyone, thanks for your patience I know my updates are normally super-fast but I moved house this week so I had to get my internet up and running, plus I've had my exams! Anyway I'm so glad everyone liked the kiss at the end of last chapter, hopefully you'll like the follow-up. I actually find it to be too long and I've spent a long time trying to split it up but it needs to be one chapter! Enjoy!
*


“We need to get back inside,” I muttered against his lips. “Al and Frankie.”

He shook his head, pulling my waist tighter against him. “Five more minutes.”

I couldn’t help but laugh as I pulled away. I looked into his stormy grey eyes, and felt a thousand different feelings welling up in me.

“This is good, isn’t it?” He said, grinning.

I smiled and sighed. “I think so…it’s a lot to think about.”

“Yeah it is,” He agreed. “So what are you thinking right now?”

“I don’t know,” I admitted. “I just want to go and say goodbye to Al and Frankie right now, then we’ll deal with it. We need to really talk Scorpius.”

He nodded, and I could see that he agreed. “Okay,” He said. “We go back and for now we don’t let on that this has happened.”

We went back into the pub, me shivering slightly. The rain had finally gone off but I was soaking; I located my bag and pulled out my wand, casting a quick drying charm, and noticed Scorpius do the same. It seemed we had just torn ourselves away from each other in time; Al and Frankie were currently being hugged by their parents, as they were to leave early in the morning they were saying their goodbyes now.

I saw Albus look around, his eyes searching, and concluded that he must have said goodbye to everyone apart from Scorpius and me. He found Scorpius first; they shook hands and Al said something, to which Scorpius laughed. They hugged then Albus looked around again. I called his name and rushed over to him; he and Frankie were at the door now, everybody had congregated to wave them off and start making their own way home.

“Rosie!” He called, rushing over to me. “I’m really going to miss you Rose.”

I hugged him tightly. “I’ll miss you too. Have fun and be careful Al, don’t do anything stupid.”

I couldn’t believe that there were tears in my eyes, but the prospect of going three months with my favourite cousin was harder than I’d thought.

“Are you okay?” He asked me, looking concerned. I forced a smile for him, and put an arm around Frankie.

“I’m fine,” I assured them. “Have fun!”

We waved them off as they left and the rest of our friends started to leave too. I wandered back to the table and raised my glass to my lips. I wasn’t alone long, two minutes later I was joined by Dom and Megan, who was pulling her coat on.

“Well?” Asked Dom, while Megan nodded excitedly.

“Well what?” I asked slowly.

Megan rolled her eyes. “We saw you go outside with Scorpius!”

“And?”

And you’re got that look on your face!” Said Dom, grinning at me.

“What look?” I demanded, raising eyebrows.

“The I just kissed Scorpius Malfoy look,” Explained Megan. “We could spot it a mile off!”

I laughed and shook my head. “You’re being silly. And by the way don’t you have a four-year old daughter to get home to?”

She sighed. “Lunch, tomorrow, the three of us.”

“Twelve o’clock,” Agreed Dominique. “We want answers.”

I shrugged it off, and laughed again. I didn’t know what answers they were expecting, when I didn’t even have any for myself.

I left not long after with Mum and Dad, glancing meaningfully at Scorpius as we departed. Mum and Dad seemed intrigued, but didn’t question me when I told them  had to go somewhere an hour later; being twenty-two years old I really didn’t feel the need to justify my whereabouts to my parents anymore, and thankfully they didn’t push it. If nothing else, they at least didn’t seem suspicious that my travels involved a Malfoy.

I can’t say Draco’s reaction was so blasé; in fairness, I did show up on his doorstep at eleven-thirty that evening, but I had expected Scorpius to answer. Regardless, I apologised for my lateness and asked if I could see his son, to which he showed my upstairs.

Scorpius was in his bedroom, pacing the length of the floor between the window and door. He froze when I entered and slowly closed the door, his face alert.

“Hi,” I said, anti-climactically.

He nodded. “Hi.”

We stared at each other, two metres of floor between us, in silence. I neither knew what to say or where on earth to start. As I looked into his eyes, I was heartbreakingly reminded of the night he’d left me, and that brought with it even more confusion. My heart seemed to race rapidly, without delay, like it was about to burst out of my chest. It was almost painful; I didn’t have a clue what to say, and yet there were one hundred different sentences on the tip of my tongue.

“Five years ago,” I finally said, in a hoarse voice. “We promised that we would never mess this up again, that we were done making mistakes.”

Scorpius nodded, and his eyes were apologetic.

I managed a small smile. “And yet here we are.”

He sighed. “It was supposed to be so easy,” He reminded me. “We meet, we fall in love, and we live happily ever after. But it didn’t work like that for us.”

“Of course it didn’t,” I nodded. “I love you,” I whispered, and my eyes swam with tears of anguish and confusion. “But I’m scared of what you do to me.”

“What I do to you?” He asked, frowning.

I nodded again. “I’m scared. You make me so vulnerable, and so dependant on you, so much that it’s not healthy. And I’m scared of letting you into my life again in case…” I trailed off, looking at the green, thickly carpeted floor.

“In case I leave you again,” He finished for me, nodding back. “I know you’ll never forgive me for leaving, I sure as hell won’t forgive myself. All I can do is promise I will try my best to ensure that I never hurt you again.”

“You know the weird thing?” I asked.

He laughed. “What’s that?”

“Even when you left, when I was so upset, even then I felt more alive than I did once I got over you. Once I left you behind and shut off all feelings towards you, I didn’t feel like the same person. When I was with you, it was like I was flying.”

“So what about Mark?” He asked defiantly.

I sighed. I knew the question of Mark was coming, and there was nothing I could do to avoid it.

“Mark was…” I shrugged, looking up at him. “Mark was everything I wanted, and needed, and I didn’t deserve him in the slightest. I loved him so much, and I could see my life with him; it would be so easy,”

Scorpius nodded, and I saw how the words broke his heart.

“But Mark isn’t you,” I finished. “That’s the one thing I could never get past. He just wasn’t you.”

“You told me to leave the wedding,” He said. “You told me to go, you didn’t want me there you wanted him.”

“I was humiliated,” I said firmly. “And I was devastated and I didn’t know what the hell I was going to do because I’d made such a huge mess of everything.”

“Would you have married him?”

I considered this. I’d often wondered how the wedding would have panned out, if Scorpius had gone and we had continued with the service. Would I have gone through with it? I wasn’t sure.

“I don’t know,” I admitted. “I really don’t know. I think I was just in so deep and I didn’t have any way out. I certainly wasn’t ready to get married and we both rushed into it…but I don’t know. I can tell you this though,” I said, nodding. “It wouldn’t have lasted, and we both know that now.”

“Sometimes I hate you for getting engaged to him, for living with him.” He told me honestly, his face apologetic.  “I hate you for sleeping with him and I hate you for loving him,”

I nodded, because I understood. “I hate you everyday for leaving me,” I admitted. “I want to strangle you at some point every single day, though that’s really been the case since Hogwarts,” I joked.

“And I’m jealous about the girls you had one-night stands with in Wales,” I added, laughing.

He too laughed, though his eyes were of sadness. He ran his hands through his hair, and he looked exhausted with thinking about it all. I smiled sadly at him.

“Wouldn’t it be lovely if this were easy?” I asked softly.

“It really would.” He said. “Is there too much history? Or can we start over? Right now, Rose, we have to decide.”

The weight, the impact of his words, was shattering. I realised resolutely, that I was at a crossroads in my life now and I had two choices.

Option one, safe, dependable option one; to walk away and never look back, to start afresh and maybe find someone totally amazing one day. I should choose option one, and we both knew it.

But then there was option two, which was risky, and dangerous and hazily detailed. Get back on the rollercoaster, take the risk. Was I strong enough? Was he?

“Scorpius,” I said, as if his name could solve the whole thing.

He stared back at me, grey eyes meeting brown, his gaze intense. “Rose,” He murmured.

I bit my lip nervously, unsure of everything and yet certain at the same time. I had never felt so conflicted and yet so passionate about anything in my life.

And then there was just certainty. Like a fire inside me, indestructible and blazing. And I knew, and I suddenly could laugh at myself for my former indecision. Because who had I been to think I could override fate? And who was I to pass up on a chance so great?

“I’m in,” I said. “Let’s try again, let’s do it.”

“You mean it?” He asked, quickly.

“I’ve never been surer,” I said, firmly. “We’ll do this, we’ll try it.”

Scorpius threw his head back in relief, and I crossed the floor between us in a few steps. I buried my face in his chest, and he wrapped his arms around me, and I was home. And this was more than the kiss, in truth, because it was more intense and fuller of the dormant, but powerful as ever, love we felt for each other.

He pressed his lips to my hair and I smiled against his shirt, my eyes moist. And then I realised my own relief; it was like my heart had been constricted in a tight ball for the last four years, and now it had relaxed and it was the way it was supposed to be at last.

Because in truth I knew it; my heart had never been mine - it was his.

I brought my face to his, and felt as if I could just stare at him like this forever, and that would be enough. But he wanted more, and so did I. I kissed him very softly, our lips just brushing, and that one touch was like a trigger between us. There was suddenly more than the blazing fire of certainty, now there was electricity between us. Scorpius was suddenly like a drug to me.

We kissed each other with more force, and now his hands were everywhere, and he was everywhere. I pulled his shirt off him with a frantic need like never before, as he all but dragged my t-shirt over my head. And this was what we’d truly desired, as we impatiently removed each other’s clothes.

His body was greater and more perfect than I remembered it; lean, toned and tanned. I dragged my hand down the perfect panes of his stomach as he pulled us onto his bed, not taking the time to be gentle; we were never careful with each other.

Our eyes locked on each other as we became one together, and finally the last restraints left me, as I felt the surge of pleasure that only Scorpius could ever provide me with; me gripping his shoulders, his hands on my bare skin, united in our passion.

I could safely say we more than made up for the last four years that night.

*

I woke slowly the next morning, the sun streaming in through his windows, hot on the bare skin of my back. At first I didn’t know where I was at all, but then I felt his smooth fingers stroking along my ribs and I smiled peacefully. I opened my eyes and turned my head round to face him. He grinned.

“Good morning,” He muttered huskily.

“Good morning,” I replied. I stroked his hair out of his eyes and he closed them at my touch.

“Rose,” He said quietly. “Last night was amazing.”

I nodded. “I know,” And he was right. I felt a warm, sunny feeling deep in my stomach which made me squirm in pleasure.

He looked at me with a content smile on his face as I sat up in the bed, stretching tiredly. I laughed. “What?”

He shook his head, still smiling. “It’s just you’ve changed, that’s all.”

“I’ve changed?”

“Yeah,” He smiled, putting both his hands around my waist and pulling me closely. “But in a good way.”

I nodded. “You’ve changed in a good way too.”

“I’m so glad we-” Scorpius stopped abruptly, mid-sentence, as he was interrupted by a light knock and opening of his bedroom door.

Astoria Malfoy went scarlet as she took in the sight of us, lying together, completely naked in her son’s bed. She muttered a rushed apology and all but ran back out of the room, firmly closing the door behind us. I was mortified.

Scorpius groaned and leaned his head against my shoulder, and I couldn’t help but laugh.

“What could possibly be funny?” He asked, in disbelief.

“It’s like we’re teenagers,” I told him. “Getting caught by the parents!”

He nodded in agreement. “When in actual fact I’m twenty-two years old and perfectly at liberty to have sex with whoever I want!”

I laughed. “I bet you say that to all the girls,”

He grinned at me, and then his wide smile turned to a grimace as there was another light, tentative knock at the door, followed by Astoria’s careful, quiet voice.

“Scorpius? I’m so sorry to disturb you again but would you and Rose like to come down for some breakfast?”

Scorpius shook his head and mouthed I’m sorry at me. I simply laughed again, shaking my own head.

“That would be lovely, thank you Mrs Malfoy,” I called back politely.

“No problem dear, see you both downstairs.”

I clasped hand over my mouth to mask my giggles as we heard her walk back down the stairs; Scorpius looked wholly affronted by this point. He shrugged in defeat and got up out of the bed. I couldn’t help but marvel at his body as he walked over to his wardrobe; for a year and a half I’d lived with Scorpius, and had enjoyed the privilege of getting my fill of his muscled chest, and strong thighs and tanned skin. It was almost unfair that I’d been missing out for so long.

He pulled on a pair of grey pyjama trousers, before throwing a navy pair to me, along with a green, Slytherin-emblazoned hooded jumper. I grimaced at his choice; sure it was no accident, as I pulled the clothes on. I rolled out of the bed and stretched tiredly, his trousers slipping off my hips. I pulled the drawstring on them tightly and followed him to the mirror on the inside of the wardrobe door. I laughed; my hair was a mess of wild curls, which I tried to tame into something respectable with his comb, but it was no good; I’d need a shower.

“Let’s go and get this over with,” He said, kissing the top of my head.

I nodded and smiled up at him. “Will your Dad be home?”

He nodded darkly. “He won’t have left for work yet,” He muttered. “I’m dreading this.”

“Well trust me as much as you’re dreading this its not half as much as I’m dreading telling my Mum and more importantly Dad that I’m back with the man he detests for what he calls ruining my life.”

Scorpius nodded again, and he looked guilty, which instantly made me feel bad. Just another reminder of the scars we’d left on each other last time; that was something we’d have to work on.

“Come on,” I said hastily. “Let’s get it over with, like you said.”

Scorpius’ mother was laying out a nicely presented breakfast when we entered the kitchen, myself tailing behind Scorpius nervously. He grasped my hand lightly in comfort as I took in the somewhat intimidating sight of Draco Malfoy sitting at the head of the table, immersed in a new copy of this morning’s Daily Prophet. Despite all the history between Scorpius and me, I’d never been quite comfortable around his father; I think there was just too much bad blood between him and my Dad.

Scorpius cleared his throat awkwardly and spoke in a low voice. “Morning Dad.”

Draco lowered his paper with a smile on his face, which fell as soon as he saw me standing, half-hidden behind his only half-dressed son.

“Ah,” He said uncomfortably; though Scorpius wouldn’t like to admit it he was like his father in many ways. “Good Morning, son. Rose.”

I half smiled at him. “Good Morning, Mr Malfoy.”

“Have a seat, Rose sweetheart,” Said Astoria, smiling at me warmly and gesturing to the table. I smiled at her and took a seat across from Draco, lowering my eyes to my plate. There was a short silence while we helped ourselves to toast and orange juice, and I was just starting to think how I’d rather this than have to explain ourselves, when Draco spoke.

“So,” He said, and my eyes flickered to Scorpius’ nervously. “This is a surprise.”

“What’s that, Dad?” Asked Scorpius sarcastically. I aimed a kick at him underneath the table.

Draco cleared his throat. “Well, obviously we’re happy to have you here Rose, however it is a surprise.”

“Why?” Asked Scorpius, grinning. “She used to be here all the time.”

I glanced at Astoria and she shook her head in a resigned way, as if this was a common occurrence.

“Well that was when you two were dating.”

Scorpius looked over at me and raised his eyebrows, while I shrugged.

“I assume you’re back together then?” Asked Draco, looking expectantly at his son.

“That’s not really any of our business, Draco,” Said Astoria firmly. Draco shrugged stubbornly.

“I’m just taking an interest,” He muttered, looking exactly like Scorpius.

“No you weren’t,” Said Scorpius. “You were trying to figure out whether or not we shagged last night.”

“Scorpius!” Muttered Astoria, while Draco went beetroot red. I bit my lip to try to stop from bursting out laughing, while Scorpius laughed openly.

“Look, Mr and Mrs Malfoy,” I said, taking control of the situation. “We would love to explain to you both exactly what’s happening but the truth is we haven’t really figured everything out yet. But,” I glanced at Scorpius and he grinned at me. “Well we want to be together again.”

“Oh that’s lovely!” Said Astoria, grinning at us. “Wonderful news!”

But Scorpius and I did not look at her; instead both of us stared at Draco, anxiously awaiting his reaction. All of Scorpius’ cocky sarcasm was now gone.

Draco cleared his throat, a slight frown on his aging features. He rubbed at his jaw, looking thoughtful, before finally looking up at us.

“Well this is your own decision,” He said. “But the last time you got involved with each other you both ended up very hurt.” Draco glanced at me and then smiled uncharacteristically. I could count on one hand the number of times Draco Malfoy had ever smiled at me.

“Look Rose, I know you have preconceived notions about me, and its only expected given who your parents are but…well please remember that I have both Scorpius and your best interests at heart here.”

I raised my eyebrows at him. This was a surprise, and certainly not something I was used to. You could say that I’d shared a strained relationship with Draco Malfoy in the past; it took him a long time to adjust to the idea of his son dating a Weasley, especially Ron Weasley’s daughter. And similarly it took me a long time to become comfortable with the man who, as a teenager, had watched as his Aunt tortured my mother in his own home. Eventually, we came to be civil to one another, for the sake of Scorpius. I felt it was only fair, considering the effort Scorpius had always made with my family.

Draco had, as Scorpius had reminded him, gotten used to my presence in his house while we were searching for the flat and sometimes after that too. We rarely spoke however, due to the simple reason that more than anything else, while Astoria could feign ignorance and chat happily with me, Draco couldn’t forget the numerous times he’d heard his son and I have sex in his home. Regardless, he’d always been civil to me, but never nice.

And he’d never told me he had my best interests at heart.

“Oh,” I replied finally. “Well that means a lot, Mr Malfoy.”

Draco nodded, and thankfully Scorpius broke the uncomfortable silence. “It’s different this time.” He told them. “I think we’ve done just about everything we could to screw this up, and now we’re going into it with a new, mature perspective.”

“Well personally I’m glad to hear it,” Said Astoria, and she reached over to place her hand on mine. “Rose you’re the best thing that ever happened to our boy.”

I smiled at her, and then looked at Scorpius. “Well I should really get going,” I said quietly. “I have some plans so…”

“Of course,” Said Astoria. “Help yourself to the shower in Scorpius’ ensuite, Rose.”

I thanked her and Draco, before getting up from the table. I left the kitchen without another word, leaving Scorpius to speak to his parents in private.

It was all very familiar as I removed my clothes and stepped into the wide, luxurious shower and turned the handle. I closed my eyes as the water sprayed onto my skin, scalding hot and relaxing. For the first time since last night, I considered what had happened.

It was only eleven am, and yet this felt like the longest day of my life already. Everything had come completely full-circle in the time it had taken me to come here last night to now. When I had gone to Al’s leaving party last night, I’d been a single, twenty-two year-old Healer, who had recently been jilted at the altar by Mark Oliver. And now? Well now I was eating breakfast with Draco Malfoy.

I stayed in the shower for a good fifteen minutes, before stepping out and wrapping a thick, fluffy white towel around me. When I re-entered Scorpius’ bedroom, he was waiting for me.

“I’m really sorry about that,” He said at once. “You know what my Dad is like.”

“It’s fine,” I replied, smiling at him. He walked over to me and put his arms around my waist. I hugged myself closer to him, and he rested his head on mine.

“I can’t believe we’re here, like this,” He muttered.

I nodded, without looking up. “It’s like the last four years never happened,” I said in a quiet voice. “I can hardly believe it to be honest.”

He lifted my face up gently to kiss me, and I grinned against his lips. When he stopped kissing me, I took his hands in mine and grinned up at him, feeling like a smitten schoolgirl.

“I have to go,” I admitted.

“No!” He laughed, stroking my still wet shoulders. “Where are you going?”

“I have to meet Megan and Dominique for lunch,” I said, rolling my eyes. “They want all the details. Plus despite the fact that I’m 22 my Mum and Dad will be beside themselves with the fact that I didn’t come in last night.”

He nodded. “Are you going to tell them? Your parents?”

“Yes,” I said surely. “I just don’t know how they’ll react.” I shrugged my shoulders and sighed. “Oh well, I better get dressed.”

He smiled. “I’ll help you.”

I raised my eyebrows at him. “Scorpius I am one-hundred percent sure you have never helped me get dressed in my life! You’ve always been too busy taking my clothes off.”

And because he just really wasn’t that great a liar, he didn’t deny it.

*

I let myself into the house and was met by my Mum in the hallway, whose face was all lit up excitedly. I frowned at her and she actually ran over to me and took my hands.

“Mum are you alright?” I asked her, laughing.

Mum nodded. “Where were you?” She asked at once. “Oh it doesn’t matter it’s none of my business! Listen!” She said, gripping my hands tighter. “There’s someone here to see you.”

“What?” I asked her, raising my eyebrows. “Who?”

She grinned. “Go and see for yourself! They’re in the dining room with your father.”

I frowned once more at my Mum before shrugging and allowing her to lead me into the dining room.

The sight that met me then shocked me in a way that I would never forget for the rest of my life. And honestly, the way my life went, I really should have seen it coming.

My Dad was sitting at the table, wearing a similar maniacal grin to my Mum’s, and sitting across from him was none other than Mark Oliver.

The runaway groom had returned. 



*



A/N I hope you all liked this! I paid a lot of attention to detail writing this one, especially Rose's feelings, as she is such a complex individual it was pretty fun to write her conflicted feelings towards Scorpius and then the sudden certainty. Could have had a happy ending, but I just had to be mean and throw Mark back into the mix!! Thoughts?? x

Chapter 19: Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Hi everyone! I am really sorry for the huge wait on this chappie! I've been crazy busy with lots of things, but I was happy to find out this week that I passed all my uni exams so it inspired me to get this chapter up for you all! It's pretty short so I'm sorry about that, but a short chapter is better than no chapter, don't you think? Enjoy!
*

“So,” I said after several minutes of awkward silence. “How are you?”

Mark smiled. “I’m good thanks, and you?”

I just nodded uncomfortably. Mum and Dad had left us alone to talk, grinning away as they did so. And here I was – alone with my ex-fiancé with absolutely no idea what he wanted. He seemed to realise this.

“You’re probably wondering what I’m doing here,” He said.

“No,” I lied. Mark laughed.

“I just wanted to see you…it’s been a really long time.” He said, taking a step closer to me. “So what’s been going on with you?”

As I looked into his warm, familiar eyes I realised something; I wasn’t in love with Mark anymore. It was odd; in all the time I’d known him, I had always felt something more than friendship towards Mark, even from the very first time I met him. It was like there’d always been a spark; but now I honestly felt nothing. It was bewildering, and also quite sad.

And also a relief.

“Well,” I said, shakily. “To be honest I…I’m back with Scorpius.”

Mark seemed to shrink inward away from me, but his face did not betray his reaction. He raised his eyebrows a little and a frown creased his eyebrows.

“Your parents didn’t mention…”

“We literally just got back together,” I explained. “As in last night.”

“Right,” He said, his voice now matching my discomfort. “I suppose I saw it coming.”

I nodded. “It was sort of inevitable.”

Mark sighed. “Rose I want to apologise.”

“For what?”

He shrugged. “For the way I behaved. I left you there, the day of the wedding…and I shouldn’t have. I shouldn’t have let Scorpius dictate what happened to us.”

“No you shouldn’t have,” I agreed. “And Mark I don’t want you to think I was lying to you back then…the thing is I won’t deny I had feelings for Scorpius at the time of our wedding, because I always have had feelings for him. But I meant it when I said I wanted to marry you.”

He shrugged. “It didn’t change anything though did it?”

“Well,” I said, shrugging too. “You didn’t give me much of a choice. But to be honest, I think it was a matter of time for Scorpius and me.”

Destined to be together,” He said, shaking his head sadly. “I half expected to come here and find you married to him actually.”

I laughed. “Well like I said, we just got back together.”

He nodded, looking resigned. “We had some good times though, didn’t we?”

“Yes,” I said honestly. “We really did, Mark. I was so happy with you, and I was lucky to have you. Anyone would be lucky to have you.”

He smiled, and held out a hand to me. I smiled back at him as I shook it, our eyes on each other. It was strange to be parting on such good terms, considering how we’d left things after the wedding. But I was happy at least that Mark seemed to understand that I did love him and that I did want to marry him. That was something.

“Some love stories aren’t meant to be forever,” He said simply.

“But that doesn’t make them any less important,” I agreed, nodding.

Ours was not a great relationship which spanned over decades and defied every other force of life, but for the tiny part of forever that Mark and I had shared our lives together; it had been more than enough for us.

*

“Bye Mark!” Called my Mum politely, as he smiled at her and Dad and apparated from where he stood in the hallway.

They rounded on me as soon as he vanished.

“What happened?” Demanded Dad excitedly.

“What did you talk about? How is he?” Said Mum, looking expectant.

I sighed. “Mum, Dad, I know you both really like Mark, and so do I but…it’s been more than nine months since the wedding; and we’re not together now so we’re probably never going to be.”

“But he came to see you!” Said Mum, looking devastated at my words.

“Yes to see how I was!” I exclaimed. “And anyway I don’t want to get back together with him.”

“But why Rose?” Dad pressed on, sounding frustrated.

“Because I’m back with Scorpius!” I shouted, before I could stop myself.

They both stared at me, and it seemed as though the three of us were frozen in shock. Mum looked almost resigned, as if she’d known this was coming. Dad on the other hand, looked both astounded and as if he could kill someone.

“Scorpius,” He finally said. The way he said it made the name sound like an expletive.

“Yes,” I whispered. “Scorpius.”

“When?” Asked Mum, her eyes probing. “When did this happen?”

“Last night,” I admitted.

Dad’s eyes narrowed. “Rose,” He began.

“Dad please don’t lecture me about who I can and can’t go out with!” I said. “I am twenty-two years old and I know what I’m doing!”

“Well you knew what you were doing when you were eighteen and moving in with that git!”

“Ron!” Shouted Mum. “Rose is right it’s her decision!”

“I’m not going to let you ruin your life over him!” He told me. “Rose he’s bad news!”

“Dad, please don’t talk to me like I’m a child!” I said angrily. “I know Scorpius has been an idiot in the past, but so have I! And can you honestly say that you would be bothered if I was back together with Mark?”

“Mark didn’t leave you after years together and break your heart!”

“No,” I said sarcastically. “Mark just left me at the altar instead!”

“Again thanks to Scorpius Malfoy!”

I sighed, knowing it was no good to argue with Dad when he was in this mood. I had to let him cool off. Besides, I was already late to meet Megan and Dominique, and then I was going to working later this afternoon. I didn’t have time to fight with my Dad right now.

Because apart from anything else, I was scared that what he was going to say would be right.

I eventually joined Megan Dom, and Allie half an hour later than normal, and they wasted no time in greeting me.

“You dirty stop-out!” Muttered Megan, grinning at me.

“Did you have sex with him?” Demanded Dom. Megan, Allie and I all stared at her, Megan in fury, myself in shock, Allie in confusion.

“Auntie Dom, what does sex mean?” She asked, frowning around at us.

Megan looked livid. She glanced at her daughter, then looked firmly at Dom and pointed at her, telling her she would have to explain.

Dominique giggled. “Well Allie, when two people love each other in a very special way, they show each other how much they love them.”

“When they have sex?” She asked, frowning still.

“Yes,” Said Dom, bright red in the face.

“So does my Mummy and Daddy have sex?”

I held back a laugh as Megan put her head in her hands, and Dom shook her head apologetically at her.

“Yeah I guess they do,” She shrugged.

“Allie,” Said Megan, and I was relieved she was finally taking control of this horrific situation. “Sex is a very grown-up discussion which we can talk about when you’re much older, okay?”

“Okay,” She said happily, going back to her notebook. Between them, she and Megan were determined that she would be able to write her own name by the time she started primary school in August, so she was practising at every opportunity.

“To answer your question,” I said quietly, once I was sure she wasn’t listening. “Yes we did.”

They both grinned at me and I couldn’t help the smile playing around my lips. Megan raised her eyebrows at me.

“Well?” She said, suggestively.

“Well what?”

“How was it?” She said, laughing.

I laughed at my best friend. “It was amazing,” I whispered. “And we’re back together; we’re making another go of it.”

“It’s about bloody time!” Said Dom, and I grinned at her.

The rest of our lunch date was spent discussing the many layers of my relationship with Scorpius. They wanted to know everything, and by the time we were leaving Megan and Dom were making bets on how soon we’d be married. Personally I would be happy to never get engaged again, but I let them have their fun all the same.

I dropped into Scorpius’ house before going home to get ready for work, and he seemed concerned about my Dad’s reaction to our relationship, but I was refusing to let it get to me.

“Don’t you think everyone will react like that?” He pressed on, as I sat down at his desk and pulled out some parchment. He was standing against the wall, watching me as I began to write.

“Megan and Dom didn’t,” I shrugged. “And neither did your Mum and Dad.”

“Maybe Megan and Dom just acted okay with it…that might not be what they were thinking,” He said, sounding worried.

“Okay so say that’s true; say it’s not what they’re thinking. Does that mean we shouldn’t be together? And while we’re on the subject, people would have just as much to say if I were getting back together with Mark.”

Scorpius frowned in distaste and I laughed. “He came to see me today,” I admitted.

“Mark?” He asked. “Why? What did he want?” He sounded angry. That was more like the Scorpius Malfoy I knew and loved.

“I don’t actually know,” I said truthfully. “But I told him we’re back together so he left pretty quickly.”

Scorpius nodded, looking pensive. “Who are you writing to anyway?” He asked, gesturing towards the long letter I was writing.

“Albus,” I laughed. “Don’t you remember what he said?”

He laughed. “Owl me the second you and Scorp get back together. I never realised when he said that last night that you would be writing to him today!”

“Neither did I,” I said, sealing the letter and tying it to Scorpius’ owl. He took the owl from me and sent it off out the window. I got up and closed the distance between us, wrapping my arms around his waist. “It’s all happened so fast,” I reminded him. “And this is new for both of us…the last time we were together we were only nineteen.”

“A lot has changed since then,” He pointed out.

“Exactly,” I agreed. “So maybe we should sort of treat it as a new relationship? And that way we’re just doing everything for the first time.”

“I like that plan,” He said, grinning. He leaned down to kiss me, and then stroked the front of my hair. “So when do you finish work tonight?”

“Midnight,” I muttered unenthusiastically.

“Are you coming to stay with me then? I’ll wait up for you.”

“No!” I said, grinning. “If we’re doing this like it’s a new relationship then I’m not going to sleep with you until you’ve taken me on at least four dates!”

“What about last night?” He laughed.

“That didn’t count,” I assured him, laughing too. “You’re not getting me that easy Malfoy.”

“Oh really?” He asked, raising his eyebrows. I was about to respond when he kissed me again, his hands running down my back, over my hips, along my thighs…I sighed. He was going to make my plan extremely difficult. I shoved him off me and shook my head.

“Do you really think you can play me at that game Scorpius?” I laughed.

“You haven’t seen anything yet, Rose.” He assured me, winking. “Enjoy work!”

“Oh I will,” I muttered, shaking my head at my boyfriend. I smiled to myself; it felt good to call him my boyfriend again.

*

Work dragged in, without Al there too keep me company. I’d gotten so used to him being my “partner” on all of my shifts, and it felt oddly quiet without him here with me. The shift went slowly, especially as we weren’t very busy. That was the odd thing about working in an emergency ward; it was either crazily busy or completely dead.

I was sitting at the reception, tidying away the prescriptions and potions that were to be administered during the nightshift when the other Healers came in, relishing in the fact that I only had another hour until I got to go home. I still hadn’t decided whether I was going home or to Scorpius’s house.

Predictably, I let my mind wander. The last two days had been so crazy; first Al and Frankie left and now Scorpius and I were back together. It was staggering. But then to be honest, the last year of my life had been pretty non-stop crazy.

In the space of just ten and a half months, I’d planned a wedding, qualified as a Healer, witnessed my two cousins nearly kill themselves, cared for my Dad following his heart attack, fallen out with my best friend, had a wedding, get jilted at the wedding, moved out my flat, moved back home, gone to the Bahamas, fight with Scorpius so many times, welcome baby Arthur into my life, said goodbye to my cousin and his girlfriend for three months and get back together with my ex-boyfriend.

It was a miracle I was still standing. And typically, as if someone had realised I was actually getting a minute to myself, the loud emergency buzzer sounded from the nearest cubicle as a patient was zoomed into it on a stretcher. I jumped up and ran towards the cubicle, the nearest Medi-Wizard falling into step with me, giving me all the information about the twenty-three year old female who was apparently in the late stages of labour. I felt the blood drain from my face as I realised that, being the more experienced of the two available Healers, I would be delivering my first ever baby.

I took a deep breath and rushed into the ward, pushing past the other Medi-Wizard and who I presumed to be the Mum.

She was lying on the bed, clutching her stomach with one hand, the other grabbing the bed sheets in pain.

And I knew her. It was Beth. 


*

A/N Thoughts???

Chapter 20: Make This Go On Forever
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Hope you enjoy the new chappie everyone! It's a bit dramatic, with a baby, a truce and a fight to keep you all on your toes! Title inspired by Snow Patrol (again!)
*


“Come on Beth, you can do it!”

“Rose I’m sorry!” She cried, between yells of pain. “I’m so sorry!”

“Beth I need you to push for me,” I said harshly. “Come on now, push!”

“Okay but I’m really sorry!”

That’s all there was for the following forty minutes; Beth apologising, her Mum stressing, and me trying to deliver her baby. Bad enough, wasn’t it that I had to deliver my first baby on my own with no managerial support, only the poor Medi-Wizard to assist me? It was even worse that I wanted to simultaneously run from the room in a blind panic, and slap Beth at once.

And so I had no option but to go completely into Healer mode – forget all my preconceived feelings towards Beth and this whole unbelievable situation, and get the baby out safely.

That didn’t mean I could stop the screaming questions in my head. What was going on? She said she’d had a miscarriage, had she told James? Did any of the Potters have a clue? Where had she been all this time?

It was infuriating.

The baby was finally delivered, after a long and admittedly admirable effort from Beth, her Mum coaching her and holding her hand the whole way through it. I was oddly reminded of Allie’s birth as the baby came into the world, and couldn’t help but smile at the shocked, adorable little face of my cousin’s first born child.

“Congratulations,” I said quietly, holding the baby to Beth. “You have a daughter.”

Beth was crying as she cradled the baby in her arms, her Mum leaning over them, tears streaming down her own face.

“She’s beautiful,” Said Harold, the Medi-Wizard who had been a great help to me throughout the labour. “Does she have a name?”

Beth nodded tearfully, gazing down at her daughter. “Her name is Emma.”

“Emma Hardy,” Nodded her Mum, smiling emotionally at the pair.

I said nothing as I watched. Here Beth was, a girl who had been one of my closest friends for years, the girlfriend of my beloved, favourite cousin, someone who I had always believed to be the epitome of kind and pure. Beth Hardy, the nicest person I’d ever met. The person who had lied, and the person who had given birth to James’ daughter, without him even knowing of her existence.

My eyes narrowed.

“Rose,” She said, finally tearing her gaze away from Emma. “Let me explain…”

I shook my head. “What is there to explain, Beth? You told us you’d had a miscarriage, and yet here we are.” I said somewhat coldly.

“I wasn’t thinking straight at the time,” She said, tearfully. “I was so stressed and confused about the baby and James and Albus were fighting and I couldn’t cope!”

“Okay,” I said, bluntly. “Congratulations, Emma is very healthy and beautiful.”

“Would you like to hold her?” She asked me carefully, as if the baby were some sort of an olive branch.

“No,” I said politely. “If you don’t mind I’m going to inform my cousin that he is a father.”

My shift was over. And that was one of many reasons why I went personally to James’ flat to tell him. I thought vaguely of the last time I’d found myself on this doorstep, waiting to have a serious conversation with my cousin. It had been the time, over nine months ago, when I’d confronted him about his one-night stand with Beth that had resulted in Emma.

How could they have known? I mean, historically Beth at least should have had more sense, given her first-hand experience of unexpected pregnancy through Megan, but they were young, carefree and single, with a little too much to drink. Nobody would have guessed what the outcome would be. But that was the difference; Beth had the last nine months to prepare for the birth of her baby – James had no idea. No notice, no preparation, no nothing.

And of all the people in my life, I could say with some conviction that my fun-loving, happy-go-lucky, Quidditch playing cousin of only twenty-three years was by far the least suited to becoming a parent.

He finally answered, dressed in only his boxers, rubbing his eyes and yawning.

“Rosie,” He murmured sleepily. “What do you want at this time?”

I smiled at him and walked past him into the flat, my anger at Beth rising by the second. “I have to tell you something James.” I told him once we were in his messy living room. “And it’s going to be a huge shock.”

He frowned. “What is it? Because whatever it is it’s got to be more shocking than you and Scorp reuniting!” He joked, grinning.

“Well,” I said, bracingly. “Beth’s in St Mungo’s. She just had your baby.”

It seemed as though the confused, stunned frown would be plastered on James’ face forever as he sat there, centimetres away from me, processing this incomprehensible blow.

Finally, after about ten minutes, he spoke.

“What are you talking about?” He whispered. “She had a miscarriage.”

I shrugged. “The baby I just delivered would suggest otherwise,” I said. “I know it’s a lot to take in James, believe I’m just as shocked as you are and-”

“What the fuck?” He said, running his hands through his hair. “I’m a fucking Dad? Are you serious?”

“Yeah,” I mumbled. “I am.”

“Shit,” He whispered. “Why didn’t she say anything why…?”

“I don’t know,” I admitted sadly. “All I know is she’s just had a baby which…well there’s no denying it James, she’s your double.”

He looked up at me with wide eyes. “It’s a girl?” He asked, in spite of himself. “And she looks like me?”

I smiled. “She has your eyes,” I told him. “Beth named her Emma.”

“Emma,” James repeated, dumbfounded. “This is so much,” He said, getting up to pace the living room. “I mean I can’t be a Dad Rose! Look at me! You know I can’t be a Dad, I don’t know anything about babies or nappies or formula! I don’t know any fucking nursery rhymes!”

I stayed silent, knowing he was in panic mode and the best thing to do would be to let him have his rant.

“I mean what was she thinking?” He continued. “What was she going to do just not tell me I had a child? Is she insane? And how does she think I’ll be able to do this? Or maybe she knows I can’t and that’s why she kept it from me! I mean look at me Rose – I’m an overpaid, overrated Quidditch player who has to get his Nana to clean his flat and his Mum to do his laundry!”

I stifled a laugh and he finally stopped pacing. He looked at me and shrugged in exasperation. “Right,” He said, quietly. “I guess I better go and meet my kid.”

*

Scorpius was waiting up for me when I finally went to his house at half one in the morning. I couldn’t believe he’d stayed up for me, but then there were a lot of things about Scorpius which I’d never been able to believe.

“Finally,” He said, smiling as I crept into his room quietly. His face was pale, his eyes heavy and dark, and there was a noticeable shadow of stubble across his jaw.

I smiled back at him and sighed. “You are not going to believe what I’m about to tell you!”

He raised his eyebrows. “What?”

I crawled onto his bed and sat on his legs, taking his hands in mine.

“Well,” I said. “Beth had James’ baby tonight! She had a girl, called Emma and she’s James’ daughter.”

“What the fuck?” Scorpius whispered, looking stunned.

“I know,” I agreed. “Apparently Beth didn’t have a miscarriage after all. I don’t know how she justifies not telling the father of her child but it’s a bit late for that now. So I’ve just let St Mungo’s, I went with James to meet the baby then we both went home. He was going back to Harry and Ginny’s to tell them they were grandparents.”

“Jesus Christ,” He muttered. “That is mental.”

“I just hope this doesn’t drag up all that Albus and James fighting nonsense,” I said, tiredly. “And as for Beth…well I don’t know how James will ever forgive her for keeping this from him.”

“What happened to Beth?” Asked Scorpius, shaking his head. “Out of all your group of five girls, including you, Beth was by far the most innocent, the most trustworthy, and the most honest!”

I laughed. “And what the rest of us were lying bitches?”

“No,” He said, laughing too. “But Beth was just so…”

“Nice,” I said, nodding. “I mean she’s still nice but…I just never thought I’d see the day where James became a father. And he didn’t even have time to prepare.”

“How the hell is James going to manage?”

I shrugged. “I honestly haven’t got a clue. I mean we don’t even know if Beth wants him involved. She’s kept him out this far.”

“James has his rights to the baby,” Said Scorpius, shaking his head. “He is her father, that means something.”

“I don’t know,” I said, yawning. “And all this has kicked off the night before Hugo and Lily come home from Hogwarts for good. At least Lily wont have to wait long to meet her niece.”

Scorpius frowned. “The press are going to have a field day; the first grandchild to Harry Potter and it’s an illegitimate lovechild, born from his oldest son and his other son’s ex-girlfriend.”

“They’ll have to keep it as quiet as possible,” I said. “James’ management at the Canons will deal with it for him. They won’t be happy though.”

Scorpius shrugged. “Let’s not worry about it for now.” He said, wrapping his arms around me. “Goodnight.”

I smiled up at him and turned my head to kiss him. He grinned against my lips and pulled away ever so slightly.

“Would you be changing your mind, Rose?”

“What?” I laughed.

Scorpius laughed too. “Well I was under the impression I wasn’t allowed to lay a finger on you until we’d been on four dates. But if you’re changing your mind…” He muttered, trailing his hand under the hem of my top.

“No,” I said firmly, though it took some serious effort. “I’m not. I haven’t changed my mind.”

You could see he was disappointed. As a general rule, whenever Scorpius and I were together, we were sexually active. I could tell it frustrated him, but I genuinely wanted to take things slow this time; if we were going to make a go of it we had to. Plus it was seriously fun to watch him get so frustrated.

“Weasley,” He said, pressing his lips close to my ear. I rolled my eyes at the use of my surname. “It’s not like having sex will change anything.”

I sat up, grinning. “If it’s too hard to resist, I can leave.” I said, laughing at him. “Come on Scorp; I told you there’s no way you’ll beat me at this game!”

He groaned. “You will be the death of me!” He said, but he laughed too. “You were never this annoying in Hogwarts you know!”

“Well I was too busy fighting with you to annoy you back then,” I joked.

Scorpius laughed, pulling me back down to the bed. He wrapped his arms around me and I nestled my head against his chest.

“Very true,” He muttered.

*

Aunt Ginny was being so politely civil, it was almost funny. So pronounced was her anger, and yet she was clearly making every effort to keep it reigned in. Her eyes darted frequently between her son, her newborn granddaughter, and the mother of this child. All the while, Harry held her hand, cautioning her. The Potters were trying hard not to judge today.

Harry, Ginny, James and Lily, me, Mum, Dad, and Hugo had all joined Megan, Dom and Sophie at Beth’s parents’ house. All of us were crammed into the living room, watching as Beth sat with the adorable baby girl in her arms, James sitting awkwardly beside her, looking horrifically out of place.

“Well Beth could never have done it without Rose,” Said Beth’s Mum kindly, smiling at me as she handed everyone a cup of tea. “She was wonderful.”

I forced a smile, and then dropped my eyes to James once more. I glanced over at Lily, and saw her looking at Beth with an identical look as Ginny’s. I think part of the problem was that they had both always liked Beth so much.

Uncle Harry had owled Albus this morning, but as yet he had received no reply.

“Ginny,” Said Beth politely. “You haven’t held Emma yet, do you want to?”

I watched her now, seeing the angry defiance warring with her maternal instincts. Mum cleared her throat quietly and gave Ginny a meaningful look.

“Of course,” Said Aunt Ginny finally. She held out her arms and took Emma from Beth. The baby was closer to me now, and as I got a proper look at her, I was sure I was seeing exactly what Ginny saw. Emma truly was the absolute clone of James. She had his huge, brown eyes, Ginny’s eyes and their profiles were identical. The only exception was the hair; Beth was there in Emma’s light, caramel curls.

“She’s beautiful,” Said Ginny, and we all murmured our agreement. James was looking at the floor again.

“Well,” Said Uncle Harry. “We’re going to have to discuss Emma’s future. Beth, will you be living here with your Mum and Dad?”

Beth nodded. “My lease was up on the old flat while I was abroad, plus I need all the help I can get with the baby.”

“Why do you ask?” Asked Beth’s Dad politely. Megan and I glanced at each other. 

“Well I’m sure James and Beth will want to discuss visiting,” Said Harry, as if this were obvious. “And Ginny and I will want to see Emma.”

“That’s really up to Beth,” Said Beth’s Mum, a little haughtily.

“Mum,” Muttered Beth.

“James has just the same rights to Emma as Beth does,” Ginny reminded her.

“Well Beth is her mother,” Said Beth’s Dad. “You know yourself Ginny that it means something.”

Aunt Ginny frowned at the pair of them. “Need I remind you,” She said angrily. “That James was kept completely in the dark about the entire pregnancy. It’s not his fault he’s not been involved up to now but that doesn’t mean you get to-”

“Mum stay out of it,” Muttered James, looking at his Dad for support. “It’s up to me and Beth, okay. We will decide what happens, not anyone else. We’re…we’re Emma’s parents.”

And in a moment both truly shocking and touching, James lifted Emma from Ginny’s arms and held her, for the first time since her birth. He cradled her awkwardly and Beth moved his arms slightly so Emma was more comfortable. He managed a small smile for his daughter.

“Maybe we should go,” Said Mum, grabbing Dad and Hugo by the arm each.  “I’m sure James and Beth want some time with the baby alone.”

“Yeah,” I said, glancing at Megan and Dom. “We’ll get going too.”

“Actually,” Said Beth. “I wanted a word with you guys,” She said, looking from the three of us to Sophie. “Can you four come upstairs with me?”

Beth glanced at her daughter, in James’ arms before leading us all out of the living room and upstairs to her bedroom. Already there was a cot by her bed. I took a deep breath; all of it just made me so angry. I saw Dominique’s eyes narrow too.

“Regardless of everything that’s happened,” Said Beth as we all sat down. “You girls were always my best friends and you deserve an explanation.”

“What were you thinking Beth?” Demanded Dominique. “Seriously, what the hell were you thinking?”

Beth remained calm. “For you to understand, I have to go right back to the beginning. It was, as you all know, the night we all went out when I came back from Portugal. I was so excited to see all of you, and we were having such fun but as you’ll remember, Albus was there with Grace.”

We all nodded in memory of another of Al’s ex girlfriends.

“It wasn’t exactly nice to see him with someone so lovely, and she seemed so like me in a way and although it sounds selfish I did feel sorry for myself. That’s why I ended up drinking a little bit more than I should have. And so there was James and you all know what he’s like; he had always been flirty with me even when I was with Albus but it was only ever a joke. We were just drunk and in the club and before I knew it he was kissing me…” She shrugged. “One thing led to another and before I knew it we were back at his flat,” Beth paused. “Well I’m sure you don’t need the details.”

“I felt awful the next morning,” She admitted. “And so did James. We promised never to tell anyone, because Albus could never find out. And I honestly didn’t think about it again. It was only two weeks later when I realised I was late and I did the test.” She sighed and ran a hand through her hair, closing her tired looking eyes.

“When I found out…you honestly have no idea.” She frowned. “Well I guess you do Megan,” She corrected and Megan nodded silently. “It was as if my entire world was crashing down around me. I’d never in my wildest dreams thought I’d fall pregnant. Of course Rose I came to you and then we told James; and that was when James and Albus fell out. None of you realise how guilty I felt at seeing them. I knew I couldn’t allow myself to constantly come between them, but I also couldn’t bring myself to get rid of the baby. That’s when I decided to lie about the miscarriage. It seemed like my only option.”

“You had several other options, Beth,” Said Dom critically.

“Why didn’t you talk to us Beth?” Asked Sophie, wistfully. “We could have helped…you shouldn’t have dealt with it alone.”

“I’ve not been alone, my parents have been amazing.” She paused and looked at me. “And Rose I promise I was planning to contact James before the birth, but she came early. I never wanted to just spring this on him.”

I sighed. “It’s really none of my business. And to be honest you don’t have to explain yourself to any of us.”

Beth’s eyes suddenly filled with tears, and I instantly felt guilty even though I didn’t know what I’d said wrong.

“That’s the thing,” She said tearfully. “I really miss not having to explain myself to you. How did we all get here?”

We all looked a little uncomfortable at this. It was an awkward subject; the fact that the five of us had been lifelong friends, who now rarely spoke. There was Dom, Megan and I who were still unbelievably close, but neither of us ever saw or spoke to Beth or Sophie these days. We had just drifted apart.

“It sounds selfish,” She admitted. “But I should have been able to count on you guys through all this…I really miss having you all in my life, and I honestly don’t know how I can raise Emma without your help. All of you.”

I looked at Megan and saw there were tears in her eyes too. I realised what she was thinking; how would she have coped if she had been all alone?

“I know I’ve burned my bridges with all of you through lying about the baby,” Beth said. “Especially you two,” She said, looking from me to Dominique. “I would never ask you to put our friendship before your relationship with your cousins. But maybe now you’ll understand, even just a little bit. I didn’t mean to behave so wrongly; I just didn’t have you all there guiding me.”

I bit my lip and looked at the floor. As we sat there silently, I heard Megan get up and go to put her arm around Beth. It didn’t surprise me; Megan would be so understanding of Beth’s vulnerability right now, and it was second nature to her to help a friend in need.

“Beth,” I said finally. “You know if you ever need anything I’ll be there. And there’s no getting past the fact that you are one of my oldest friends, and you’re now the mother of my baby cousin.”

Beth nodded silently and I continued, trying to sound nice.

“I won’t pretend I like what you did, and you know as well as anyone that I have a bad habit of judging people; but I am here for you, and I’m not going anywhere.”

“Me too,” Whispered Sophie, also putting an arm around Beth.

Dominique shrugged, still looking pissed off at Beth. I didn’t blame her, I was too.

“Me too,” She finally muttered.

And there we all sat, lost in our own thoughts. When I really considered it, my relationship with the girls was so similar to my relationship with Scorpius; stormy, complicated but somehow kind of destined. I realised how much we’d been missing each other, the same as I’d been missing Scorpius, and found myself vaguely wondering which of the salvaged relationships would last.

Scorpius, or the girls? I could only hope for both.

*

It was with a familiar feeling of dread that I approached my Mum and Dad’s house, where I could see Scorpius waiting for me at the gate. We were going out and I’d asked him to meet me here, not thinking at the time about the repercussions of having him back at my house.

It wasn’t like I could tell him he wasn’t allowed to be here; I’d been staying at his house the past few nights after all. But I still hadn’t broached the touchy subject of getting back together with him with my Dad yet.

The time had come, it appeared.

“Hi,” He said, kissing me as I reached him. “I missed you. How did it go at Beth’s?”

I shrugged. “Emma is gorgeous, Beth is a mess and James is scared shitless. As expected.”

He nodded. “Do you want me to wait outside?”

“No,” I said frowning. “My Dad has to get used to the idea sooner or later. Come on in.”

“If you say so,” He muttered, following me into the house. We found my Mum and Dad having dinner with Hugo, who I’d regrettably hardly said two words to since he got back from Hogwarts.

“Hello,” I said as we entered the dining room. They all looked up, Mum accepting, Hugo amused, and Dad furious.

“Rose,” He said, in a forced calm. “I really don’t want Scorpius here. No offence Scorpius.”

“None taken,” Muttered Scorpius, looking resigned.

“Dad please don’t act like this,” I sighed. “Can’t you just accept this for me?”

“No,” He said firmly. “I won’t let you mess up your life again, Rose, not under this roof.”

“So what you want me to move out just so I can go out with whoever I want?” I demanded. “Dad I am 22 years old for the last time! You don’t get to make this decision it is none of your business!”

“While we’re in my house, it is my business.” He said stubbornly.

I sighed and looked at Mum, who shook her head sadly. “I’m not getting involved Rose,” She told me. “You sort this out between yourselves.”

“I’m an adult Dad, you have to realise that.”

“Well act like it then!” Exclaimed Dad. “Look I know you have feelings for Scorpius, and honestly Scorpius mate it’s nothing personal, but you are no good for Rose.”

“Rose I’m going to go,” Scorpius said quietly, brushing his lips against my hair. “Come over later if you want.”

“No, Scorpius don’t leave,” I said, feeling terrible.

“It’s fine,” He insisted. “I’ll see you whenever.”

And with that he had apparated. I rounded on my Dad, taking a deep breath to steady myself. I was livid.

“Okay Dad,” I said slowly. “We have to have a serious discussion now. And I mean an adult discussion where you listen to me. Firstly, I did not move back in so you could treat me like a teenager okay?”

“No, you moved back in because you and Mark split up after he ruined your wedding!” Dad shouted.

“And I will promptly move back out if you ever speak to me like a child in front of my boyfriend again Dad!” I said furiously. “I am an adult and as I said before this is none of your business!”

“Oh but it was my business when he walked out and left you, wasn’t it?” He said, and I was shocked to her the shaking in his voice. His eyes swam with emotion. “It was my business when I was paying off all the rent so you could get out of that flat. It was my business when I was bringing all your stuff back home. It was my business when I was listening to you cry every night after he treated you like dirt, wasn’t it Rose?”

I bit my lip as tears pricked at my eyes.

“You need to realise I’m not being this way to treat you like a child,” He said. “I know you’re an adult and I respect you. But I will not for one second act like I’m okay with you getting back together with him Rose, no way.”

“But he makes me happy!” I exclaimed.

“For how long?” Asked Dad, sadly.

“You’re only doing all this because it’s him,” I said tearfully. “Because he’s a Malfoy, you could never see past that. You wouldn’t care if he wasn’t related to Draco.”

Dad’s eyes widened and I saw the hurt I caused him with that accusation.

“Rose,” He said quietly. “I have spent the last thirty years fighting the very people who can’t see past surnames and blood status. It’s nothing to do with that. I hate him because he hurt my baby girl, not for any other reason.”

“I didn’t mean it like that Dad.”

 “That’s exactly how you meant it,” He said quietly. “Don’t you dare class me as one of those people when myself, your mother and your Uncle Harry risked our life time and time again to create a world where you could live free of that. When I watched good people, my own brother, die fighting the injustice of people who had brainwashed to think that way.”

“Dad I’m sorry I didn’t-”

“Forget it,” He said. “Do what you want Rose, I’m done fighting it.”

He got up and walked out of the room, leaving me with the sinking feeling that this wasn’t just another one of our arguments. My Dad had never looked at me like that in my entire life; like he was disappointed in me.

And it looked as though he wouldn’t be forgiving me either. 


*

A/N Thoughts? xxx

Chapter 21: Dangerously In Love
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Hi again! This is a bit of a filler guys but it was getting WAY too long so I had to cut it here. Title inspired by Beyonce!  Enjoy!

*

 

“Rose I can’t do it she hates me!”

I sighed and took the crying baby from a distraught looking James. Beth had allowed James to take Emma for a couple of hours to bond with her, and he had asked me to come round to his Mum and Dad’s to help him; I knew why he hadn’t brought her to the flat he shared with Fred; that place wasn’t fit for a baby.

“Why does she hate me so much?” He asked me desperately. “I’m her Dad and all she does whenever I hold her is cry!”

“She does not hate you,” I assured him, rocking her to my chest as she wailed on. “She’s a newborn baby, that’s what they’re all like.”

“Really?”

“I assume so,” I said, shrugging. “I’ve never had one before either, remember!”

“Sorry,” He muttered.

“It’s fine, but shouldn’t you be asking your Mum and Dad about all this? They do after all have experience with newborns?”

James’ face fell even more. “I’m just trying not to burden them with it.” He told me, shrugging. “With her I mean,” He added, shaking his head.

“James she’s their granddaughter, it’s hardly a burden!” I said, laughing.

“Yeah but she wasn’t exactly a granddaughter they were expecting, was she?” He commented, passing me Emma’s bottle. “I don’t want to just unload all this on them so soon.”

I nodded. “True, but she wasn’t exactly a daughter you were expecting James, don’t forget that.” I said as I pressed the bottle to her eager mouth. We both let out a sigh of relief as she stopped crying. “Have you heard from Albus?”

James shook his head. “Nothing. But then Dad says that it could take the owl weeks to get to him; he could be anywhere.”

“Yeah I suppose,” I said vaguely.

“Guess what,” He said. “Beth told me I can pick Emma’s godfather yesterday.”

I raised my eyebrows. “Oh that was good of her. Maybe she could have told you that you were going to have a daughter in the first place.”

“Tell me about it,” He said, angrily. His eyes dropped to the baby and his expression softened. “I was thinking about asking Al to do it, when I finally hear from him.”

“Oh right,” I said, frowning. “Do you think he’ll do it?”

“I was about to ask you the exact same thing,” He admitted.

I shrugged. “I don’t know James,” I admitted. “Maybe, when he gets over the shock…”

“Yeah, well God knows when that will be,” He said, darkly. “I don’t see myself ever getting over the shock.”

I smiled. “You’ll get there,” I said, placing Emma back into his arms. “It’s just going to take some adjusting. Have you discussed when or if you’re going to be seeing Emma?”

He nodded. “It’s all a bit up in the air just now, as obviously she’s only five weeks old and she needs to be with her Mum as much as possible. It looks as though I’ll eventually be taking her alternate weekends, and the week I don’t get her for the weekend I get her on a Tuesday night. But obviously there will have to be leeway around Quidditch matches.”

“Thorough,” I commented.

He looked up at me, and I felt sad, seeing the lost, tired look in his eyes that had never been there before.

“I know this sounds really horrible,” He whispered. “But I really resent Beth and the baby. Both of them. It’s like they’ve taken away my freedom.”

When I opened my mouth to reply, he interrupted. “Don’t get me wrong,” He said hastily. “I do love Emma, in a way. I mean there’s no denying she’s mine, is there?” He said, staring down at her huge eyes which so resembled his own. “But it’s just hard to know my life is going to have to change completely. I’m used to going out on the pull on Friday nights and now I’ll be reading bedtime stories!”

“I think everyone feels that way to be honest,” I said gently. “But you should talk to Beth about it. She’ll be feeling the same way. Or Megan and Steven? They’ll know exactly what you’re going through.”

He nodded, looking at Emma distractedly. “It’s just so strange; I wasn’t ready for this…this need to protect someone other than myself. It’s kind of overwhelming.” He shrugged. “Again, maybe if I’d been told…”

“You can’t keep going on about it,” I said, shrugging too. “You’re going to have to just get on with it, it’s been five weeks.”

“Yeah, speaking of which, it’s also been two weeks since you and your Dad have spoken,” He said meaningfully. “When are the pair of you going to grow up?”

“You can talk!” I scoffed. “You didn’t talk to your own brother for a lot longer than two weeks!”

“Rose,” He said, raising his eyebrows.

I sighed. “It’s easier said than done, James. We’re both really stubborn, and that makes it hard when nobody is prepared to back down. Anyway it’s not like I haven’t seen him…there just isn’t exactly much conversation.”

James laughed, and then took Emma from me. He bounced her up in the air lightly, to which she gave a tiny, quiet giggle. We both smiled at her, and I let her grab my finger in her hand. There were two things none of us could deny; first, the likeness between James and the baby, and two her innocence in the whole situation. None of it was her fault, and she was just too adorable.

“Well I tell you what,” He said, still looking at his daughter. “I’ll stop pissing and moaning about the fact that Beth never told me we were having a baby if you start talking to your Dad again. Because I’m sick of your Mum going on at me to make you talk to him.”

“See how you like it!” I laughed. “When you fell out with Albus all your Mum did was try to make me sort you both out.”

“Ah well,” He said. “How are things going with you and Malfoy then?”

“Good,” I said. “We’re doing the whole taking it slowly thing, pretending we’re a new couple.”

James burst out laughing. “Christ I hate when girls do that!”

“What do you mean?”

“The whole taking things slow bit!” He exclaimed. “Girl-speak for yeah we’re not having sex for at least a month! It’s ridiculous!”

I shook my head. “Maybe if you did take things slower you’d have a meaningful relationship, James.”

“Rose I don’t want a meaningful relationship – surely you know this by now!” He said, laughing. “I like my one-night stands, they suit my lifestyle. Of course that may not be the case anymore,” He muttered, pressing his lips to Emma’s soft hair.

“Anyone who can’t accept Emma’s role in your life isn’t worth your time,” I assured him.

“Exactly,” He said. “Or maybe we’ll just do it the nights Emma’s with her Mum,” He added, grinning.

“Doesn’t it get a little bit lonely though,” I said. “Obviously not the actual one-night stand bit,” I said firmly, holding my hand up as he went to interrupt. “But all that going out and hanging around clubs with a load of other single guys.”

“I don’t just go out with single guys!” He insisted. “I’ve got my pulling partner!”

“Dom?” I asked, smiling.

“Who else?” He laughed. “She’s the perfect assistant; all the guys flock towards Dominique, leaving the ladies at my mercy. I get my pick of them!”

I laughed and then looked at Emma, stroking my thumb along her soft cheek. “Your father, Emma, is an absolute twat.”

James laughed too. “I’m pretty sure she already knows that.”

I was about to remark on how Emma would hopefully be smart like her Mum, when there was a familiar knock on the door. James frowned at me, apparently recognising it too.

“No way,” I whispered, as Uncle Harry came striding out of his office, smiling at us as he passed, to answer it.

My eyes flickered to James as we watched Harry open the door, almost in slow motion. And then-

“Al!” Exclaimed Harry in shocked delight. James and I stared on in shock as Harry embraced his son tightly, then turning to Frankie who stood behind, hugging her kindly too.

Albus walked slowly around the corner until he could see us clearly, and his expression was completely unreadable as he took in the sight of his brother, his cousin, and his month-old niece.

“Albus!” I said after a second, getting up to greet him. I hugged him tightly and he squeezed me back.

“Hi Rosie,” He murmured. “I’ve really missed you.”

“Hi mate,” Said James from the floor where he held Emma. “You’re back?”

I leaned back to look at him, still with my arms around his neck, and prayed for a peaceful response. It felt like a lifetime, before Al’s face broke into a grin.

“Well I had to come and meet my niece in person didn’t I?”

I let out a massive sigh of relief and kissed him on the cheek, then dashed round to greet Frankie while James hugged his brother and introduced him to Emma.

Once the initial greetings were out of the way and Ginny and Lily had come in to almost squeeze Al to death, I got a good look at Al and Frankie, who had made it clear were only here on a fly-in visit to see the baby before getting back to their travelling.

Both of them were unbelievably tanned and healthy-looking. Having been travelling for over a month now, they also had the look of a couple who had experienced a bit of culture; Frankie wore several tribal-looking bracelets on her arms, her tanned skin exposed in a cropped blouse.

“I’ve got to say it,” Said Albus, who was holding Emma. “She’s your double James.”

“Tell us about it,” Said Harry. “Looking at her, you’d think James were a baby again. It’s scary.”

Only a few more of the peaceful minutes were allowed to us, in which I filled Albus in on what was going on with Scorpius and I, and they regaled their stories of where they’d gone so far (they’d been in New Zealand when Harry’s letter had reached them, and they were going on to India next) before Beth came to pick up Emma.

To say she was shocked to see Albus and Frankie was an understatement. She stared at him in disbelief, and he watched her with a certain disappointment.

“Beth,” He finally said. “This is Frankie, my girlfriend.”

“Hi Frankie,” Said Beth, smiling at her as she took a sleepy-looking Emma from James. “I’m Beth, Albus’…friend. I’m a friend of the family.”

I watched as Frankie sized Beth up with her sharp, intelligent eyes. “Nice to meet you,” She said. “And congratulations on the baby.”

“Thanks,” Said Beth, somewhat coolly. “Are you both back early then?” She asked, her eyes flashing to Albus.

“No,” Said Al. “We just came to meet the baby, and then we’re going again. We’ll probably leave tomorrow.”

Beth nodded, and Albus got up from the seat. “Do you have a minute?” He asked Beth. “I’d like to speak with you in private.”

“Okay,” Said Beth wearily. “Ginny, can you?” She said, gesturing to Emma. Ginny took the baby from her, watching curiously as Beth and Al left the room and headed out to the garden to speak. I raised my eyebrows at James and Lily, who both shrugged.

Frankie glanced at me and I smiled at her, trying to look assuring. She nodded and smiled to herself, shaking her head a tiny bit. Like she was trying to reassure herself.

“Don’t worry Frankie,” Said Lily. “I know that look, believe me Albus is not happy with Beth.”

Frankie laughed. “Yeah I guess he’s not.”

James shrugged, pulling himself up to his feet. “I have to get to training,” He said, ducking down to kiss Emma’s head, from where Ginny held her. “Frankie do you reckon you two will stay?”

“I think so,” She said. “Since we’re here I think I’ll go round my Mum and Dad’s tonight and stay there, see them for a while you know?”

“Cool,” Said James. “Tell Al I’ll see him tonight then.”

“See you James,” I said, smiling at him.

“Catch,” He muttered before disapparating.

“Harry definitely wasn’t exaggerating in the letter,” Said Frankie, looking at the baby. “She really is the image of James, isn’t she?”

“She is,” Agreed Ginny, bouncing Emma on her knee, looking far too young to be a granny.

“And how are you coping with things?” Frankie asked, looking from Ginny to Lily.

“Can’t say I wasn’t surprised,” Said Lily. “It’s not everyday you come home from Hogwarts to find you’re an Auntie!”

Frankie nodded, smiling.

“We’re all just adjusting,” Said Ginny. “It’s been hard for everyone to get used to the idea, but we all love Emma, there’s no denying that.”

“No denying what?” Asked Albus. He and Beth had returned. Albus looked cool and calm; the same as always. Beth looked a little ruffled as she bent down to take Emma from Ginny.

“I’ll see you all later then,” Said Beth. “Nice to meet you Frankie, enjoy the rest of your trip.”

“Bye,” We all muttered as she left out the front door, holding Emma tightly. I rounded on Albus as Frankie declared she was going to see her Mum and Dad. Albus offered to come with her but she insisted he stay and catch up with us.

“I want to go and see Scorp,” Said Al, once she had gone. “Shall we Rosie?”

“Yeah,” I agreed. “I’m meeting him anyways.”

“I’ll see you when you get back, my baby boy!” Said Ginny, hugging him. “I can’t believe I’ll have all three of my babies back under one roof tonight!”

“James doesn’t live here Mum!” Laughed Lily.

“He does tonight!” Said Ginny sharply. “We’re having a Potter family meal, your Nana can cook.”

We all laughed and Albus looked at his sister. “So what do you think of Frankie, Lil? You like her?”

Lily’s eyes narrowed and she looked frighteningly like her Mum. “Yeah, she’s lovely,” She said, in a forced pleasant voice.

“You don’t like her?” Asked Al, sounding disappointed.

“I do!” Said Lily. “She’s…fine!”

“Fine?” He repeated, in astonishment. “What do you mean fine?”

“I don’t know,” She shrugged. “You know me; I always liked Beth the most.”

“Well Beth’s out of the picture for both your brothers now,” Said Ginny firmly. “And Frankie is absolutely lovely Lily; you just have to give her a chance.”

“She is, Lils,” I agreed. “You’d love her. She takes the piss out of Albus non-stop.”

“Exactly.” Agreed Aunt Ginny. “What’s not to love?”

“You can’t say anything Mum,” Frowned Lily. “From what I’ve heard you hated Aunt Fleur when she first got together with Uncle Bill!”

“Well that was different!” Insisted Ginny. “She was…well Fleur!”

*

“I’ve missed you like crazy mate!” Said Albus, hugging Scorpius tightly.

“Me too Al, really.” He said back.

I sighed, shaking my head. I was used to their borderline homosexual tendencies these days, and had long since accepted that Scorpius would never show me the affection he showed his best friend.

“I am still here,” I muttered.

“Rose,” Frowned Albus. “We’re having a moment.”

Scorpius laughed and I couldn’t help but smile. I put my arms around both of them, and ruffled Al’s hair. “It is good having you back, Al. I wish you didn’t have to leave tomorrow.”

“I know it’s rubbish, but I’m having such an amazing time you guys. Seriously, the things we’ve seen…” He shook his head in awe. “The world is an amazing place.”

“And how are things with you and Frankie?” Asked Scorpius, as we sat down in his kitchen, playing with a strand of my hair affectionately.

Al’s face lit up. “Amazing. Absolutely amazing. I’ve never felt this way before.”

“You said that about Beth and Grace!” I scoffed.

He shook his head. “This is different Rosie. Frankie is just so…independent. She’s not afraid to tell me when I’m being a wanker, and she can make fun of herself.” He winked at Scorpius. “Plus she’s amazing in bed.”

I rolled my eyes as Scorpius nodded appreciatively.

“What about you two anyway?” He demanded, grinning. “Happy to be back to normal?”

I shrugged. “We’re just taking it slow, aren’t we?”

Albus laughed and looked again at Scorpius. “So she hasn’t let you shag her yet?”

“Albus!” I cried, punching him in the arm.

“Sorry!” He laughed. “But this is what blokes talk about Rose…I’d have thought you’d spent so long hanging about with all of us you’d be used to it!”

“Yeah, not when it’s me you’re talking about though!” I insisted. “And it’s none of your business!”

“I knew it,” Muttered Albus. “Bad luck mate.”

“Shut it!” I said, as he winced at the second punch. “And you knew no such thing actually!”

“Oho so that ship has sailed then?” He demanded, laughing again. Scorpius was laughing too, and they high fived.

“You know what, if you don’t stop lowering the tone I’m going,” I muttered, shaking my head. I was stuck between two teenagers, apparently.

“Sorry Rose,” Said Scorpius, his eyes twinkling. “What do you want to talk about?”

I looked from him to Albus, and my brow furrowed in curiosity. “What did you and Beth talk about?”

Al’s expression turned stony, and I immediately regretted mentioning it. It didn’t stop my curiosity about what had been said though.

He sighed. “It’s really nothing to do with me…I probably should have stayed out of it. But when I got Dad’s letter I just couldn’t believe that Beth would do that. I had to see it for my own eyes. And then when I came home today and saw James sitting there with the baby, and that was resolute proof…I was furious with her.”

“We all were,” I mumbled.

“I think it’s because I know her so well,” He said. “I mean I think I know Beth better than anyone else, even you Rose. And I just couldn’t understand how she could do that. I sort of gave her a hard time about it…but I couldn’t help myself. I think it’s because I was disappointed in her. Again. That’s the thing about your first love…they set the standard which you measure everyone else up to. And you never forget them.”

“True,” Said Scorpius, kissing the top of my head.

Albus suddenly grinned again. “Yeah, I mean Scorp has sex dreams about Dom all the time, don’t you mate?”

“Were two punches not enough?” I laughed. “And you know we don’t talk about the horrific love triangle!”

“Ah I know,” He smiled. “I was just feeling reminiscent.”

“Al…” I said slowly. “You don’t still love Beth…do you?”

“No,” He said surely. And I believed him. “To be honest I feel sorry for her. Frankie is everything I want. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll always have feelings for her, but I’m not in love with her now.”

“Good,” I said, smiling. “Well I have an idea; when are you heading back tomorrow?”

“We’re going to leave for India around tea-time tomorrow night. Why?”

I grinned widely. “We, as in the old crew; you, me, Scorp, Dom, Megan, Stevie and Frankie of course, are all going out.”

“Where?” Laughed Scorpius.

I raised my eyebrows at them. “Well I want to go clubbing!”

*

And we did. It took a small effort to convince Dominique to come out, considering she’d be the only singleton. It was harder to get Megan to send Allie to her grandparents at such short notice. But I reminded them that despite the fact that she and Steven were married with a daughter, they were still only 22 years old; and it was about time they started acting like it.

And so here we were; in the packed London club, amidst several young, drunk Muggles with the heavy music blaring from the speakers. As soon as Megan, Dom and Frankie had a few drinks they were all for partying; but Al, Stevie and Scorpius, being typical boys, tried to sulk off to the bar.

“No way!” I insisted, pulling Scorpius by the hand to dance with me. He agreed, rolling his eyes.

It fast became a couples thing; with Dom having found a very attractive man to keep her company not long after we arrived.

Scorpius smiled at me as I pulled him closer, and handed me his glass. I took a sip from it, and screwed my face up in distaste at the dodgy-tasting Muggle alcohol he seemed to like. He laughed, and then produced another glass, which I was pleased to find contained something far sweeter and tastier.

Ignoring my taking it slow rules, either as a result of my slightly inebriated state, or simply pent up frustration I wasn’t sure, I threw caution to the wind, pressing my lips to his passionately.

I could taste alcohol on his lips as he kissed me back eagerly, his hands tightly against my lower back. I suddenly realised just how much I’d been frustrating him, and it made me giggle, allowing him to deepen the kiss further.

 I ran my hands through his hair, ignoring the people who occasionally bumped into us as they passed us. He was soon kissing my neck and I wrapped my arms tighter around him, on his broad shoulders.

“Weasley,” He growled in my ear. “I really love you.”

I smiled. “I love you too Scorp.”

He kissed my lips again and I couldn’t get rid of the smile on my face as the music changed and the crowd all started cheering excitedly; clearly it was a popular choice. Scorpius resumed his hands on my waist as we danced along with everyone else, only watching each other. I found myself marvelling at him, wondering how this had all worked out when I suddenly remembered my Dad and came crashing back down to earth painfully.

He frowned, noticing my change of mood. “Are you okay?” He shouted over the music.

I shook my head, astounded and slightly frustrated to feel the tears welling up in my eyes. He took my hand and pulled me along through the crowd, I didn’t really notice where he was taking me until we were in the deserted outdoor smoking area at the back of the club.

“Rose,” He said, wiping my tears away with his thumbs. “What is it?”

I shook my head. “I’m being a twat,” I said. “I just started thinking about my Dad…and I know I’ve been acting like it doesn’t bother me at all Scorpius but-”

I stopped as the irritating tears overwhelmed me again, and I laughed at myself tearfully. He shook his head, and I knew he wasn’t buying my forced self-mocking act. He enveloped me in his strong arms and I felt my shoulders shake lightly. My outburst was ridiculous and certainly somewhat drink-related, but I couldn’t stop it.

“He’s just…” I said thickly. “He’s my Dad! And I love him and he’s so angry with me and I don’t know what to do,” I cried as he nodded, stroking my hair. “And we’re both so stubborn that neither of us like to admit it but I’m really missing him Scorp, and it’s only been two weeks since we fell out and what if he never forgives me?”

“He will,” He said, certainly. “Of course he will he’s your Dad like you said! Of course he’ll forgive you.”

He sighed and brushed my hair away from my face, drying the tears away with the edge of his shirt.

“Oh Rose,” He muttered. “When the world finally let you be happy, eh?”

I smiled sadly. “I don’t get to be happy Scorpius.” I told him. “I accepted that long ago.”

He shook his head. “I disagree. If there’s anyone in the world who deserves to be happy it’s you.”

“No I don’t!” I argued. “Look at me! I’ve hurt everyone in my life at some point or another. I’m a disgrace.”

“No you’re not,” He said firmly. “You’re Rose. You’re my Rose and I love you and I wouldn’t have you any other way.”

I nodded, closing my eyes. “Thanks,” I said, smiling. “You always say the right thing.”

“Yeah,” He laughed. “And we’ll work out the thing with your Dad. Even if it means I have to go talk to him myself.”

“That means a lot,” I said. “Honestly.”

He nodded. “Rose?”

“Yes?”

“Can we start taking things fast again?”

I laughed. “Meaning?”

He smiled, and kissed my forehead. “Meaning I want to have sex with you tonight.”

I grinned up at him, managing to push my worries about my Dad to the back of my mind temporarily, and kissed him lightly.

“I was beginning to think you’d never ask.” 


*


A/N A little bit of old school Rose/Scorp lovin for you to end! Hope you all liked it - as always I would love to hear what you thought!! The reviews honestly make me so happy, each and every single word! x

PS Guess what - I know exactly what's going to happen at the end of the story now WOW! I have everyone's stories wrapped up in my mind which I think will make my updates come faster because I know precisely where I'm taking them all! I would expect about another ten chappies left!! xxxx


Chapter 22: With or Without You
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N This chapter has quite a lot happening so I hope you all enjoy it! Title inspired by U2, enjoy!!!!

*

“Aunt Rose?”

“Yeah?”

“Is Scorfias your boyfriend?”

“Yes, he is.”

“He’s really nice, isn’t he?”

I smiled. Hardly surprising, I suppose, that Allie would have a thing for Scorpius. She had loved him from the second Megan had mentioned his name eleven months ago.

“He is,” I said, grinning at her. “So are you enjoying your party?”

She looked around excitedly. “It’s so much fun!”

“Good,” I said. “It’s not everyday my favourite girl turns five after all!”

She climbed up onto my knee and started playing with my hair. “You were at my last birthday too.”

“I sure was,” I agreed. “I’ve been at all your birthdays! I’m your godmother of course I’ve been there for all of them. And I was there the day you were born.”

“Were you?” She asked, her eyebrows rising.

“Yep,” I said nodding. “Five years ago today.”

“Was Daddy there?”

“He was,” I told her. “Mummy, Daddy and me. And then you,” I joked, tickling her.

“Do you want a baby Aunt Rose?” She asked, now playing with the beads of the necklace I wore.

That one surprised me. “Not for a very long time,” I said honestly. “I’m quite happy just being your Godmother for now.”

She nodded. “I’m glad. I don’t want you to have a baby; then you won’t have time for me.”

“Allie I will always have time for you!” I told her, shocked at her words. “Always, you know that don’t you?”

She nodded again, looking slightly unconvinced.

“I mean it,” I said firmly. “If you ever need anything, anything at all in the world, I will be there for you Allie I promise.”

“Okay,” She said, grinning. “Do you know I’m going to school soon?”

“Less than two months,” I nodded. “Are you excited?”

“Yeah!” She said straight away. But then her face fell a little. Allie looked crazily like Megan when she frowned like that. 

“You don’t look very excited,” I pointed out.

“What if nobody likes me?” She whispered. “What if I don’t have friends?”

I could have cried, hearing the doubtful words from my beloved goddaughter. “Of course they’ll like you,” I promised her, hugging her tightly. “Who wouldn’t like you?”

“Allie?” Said Steven, who had just appeared. “It’s time for you to blow out the candles on your cake, baby!”

She grinned and jumped from my lap, running at her Dad, who picked her up into his arms and kissed her on the forehead.

“Come on then, Birthday Girl,” I said, getting up too. “Five candles won’t be easy to blow out!”

Allie’s party was held at Megan and Steven’s; they had hired a bouncy castle for her and all her friends from the magical nursery Megan sometimes sent her to. It was a relief that the party was all magical guests; it often got really tedious having to pretend to be Muggles. All of Megan and Steven’s family, and all of the other Mums and Dads of the other kids looked at ease sending dishes and presents soaring around the house to the appropriate place, and I had soon realised Megan had been quite crafty in inviting me; I had been on duty all afternoon, stepping in every time there was the slightest injury on the bouncy castle.

“This party is amazing,” Said Dom, flopping down onto the sofa beside me. “How come everything is so much more fun when you’re a kid?”

I turned my head to her and shrugged. “That’s the whole point of life, silly.”

“Well I don’t care what anyone says, I’m getting a bouncy castle for my 23rd.” She said, grinning. I laughed.

“So how’s the romance going?” She asked me, smiling.

“Great,” I said. “Scorpius and I are really getting on amazing. I just wish things were that simple with my Dad…”

She sighed. “It’s really rubbish.”

I nodded. “I mean we’re speaking…but we’re just being civil to each other. It’s awful. And the worst bit is he’s not annoyed at me; he just refuses to accept my choice.”

“That’s a Dad’s job I suppose.” She shrugged.

“I’m not so sure,” I said. “Isn’t a Dad supposed to be there for his daughter no matter what? Because he’s not here for me now. I’m just trying not to make a huge deal out of it; it’s not fair on Mum and Hugo.”

“I suppose.” She said.

“I think I’m going to move back out,” I told her. “Not just because of the issues with my Dad, I need my own space again. When I moved back home it was because I needed the comfort and security of being home with my family again, because I was vulnerable. But I want my independence now.”

She nodded. “Do you think you and Scorpius will move in together?”

I frowned. “No,” I said truthfully. “I know that’s not what people would expect me to say, but Scorpius and I aren’t ready for that level of commitment yet. Actually…” I said, grinning. “I was wondering if maybe you wanted to get a flat with me.”

“Me?” She asked, astounded.

“I get it if you don’t want to,” I said suddenly. “But I can’t afford a place of my own, and if I had to share with anyone it would be you…”

Her face lit up. “Oh my god! Aaaaah!”

“Can I take that as a yes?” I asked, grinning.

“YES!” She exclaimed, hugging me. “Oh Rose this is going to be amazing! Our own little flat!”

“I’m so glad you said yes!” I laughed. “Oh it will be amazing, Dom!”

As I hugged my cousin, and soon-to-be roommate, I couldn’t help but steal a glance at Megan, who was cutting slices of Allie’s cake for everyone, Steven by her side, putting them on plates. Every so often their eyes would meet and they would share a smile.

It was almost bittersweet in a way. They were so adorable together, and they had Allie and they were clearly insanely in love; but in a way Megan and Steven had been robbed of all of this. I knew that if things had been different, it would have been Megan I was moving in with, and the thought made me a little sad for her. She should have got the chance to do all this, but she’d been thrown straight into adulthood, something I definitely wasn’t ready for.

I found myself severely grateful that I hadn’t married Mark and rushed into such a mature lifestyle so young.

*

The week following Allie’s birthday was filled with work, Scorpius, and flat-hunting with Dominique. Scorpius had come along a couple of times, being helpful and enthusiastic; he understood completely why I didn’t think we should move in together, and he agreed. And although he didn’t say it, I knew the thought of history repeating itself, us getting a flat together, scared him just as much as it scared me.

“Rose you’re done, get going!” Laughed Healer Greene, standing in the doorway to the room in which myself and my sleeping patient were.

“I’m going,” I laughed. “I just want to make sure all his potions are at the right dosages before I leave him.”

“I can do that,” She promised. “Your shift finished five minutes ago and there is a seriously handsome blonde man out there waiting to take you to dinner.”

I smiled and nodded. Scorpius was waiting at the reception, reading a leaflet about the after-effects of dangerous curses.

“I think I’ll start handing these out to some of the idiots who think it’s funny to curse their mates,” He told me as I reached him.

“Hard day?” I laughed.

“Your Uncle Harry sent me home early; there was nothing of any interest to be done,” He told me. “I went to the gym.”

“Oh right,” I said, rolling my eyes at him. Scorpius had never been the type to work out before, so I could only gather it was something he’d picked up while he was living in Wales.

“So where do you want to go for dinner?” He asked me as I signed out at the reception desk.

“I’m not bothered,” I said, handing the register back the Welcome Witch, who was surprisingly smiley unlike the majority.

“An owl came in for you earlier Healer Weasley,” She told me, handing me a letter. “Have a nice evening.”

“You too,” I said, smiling at her. I slit the letter open and recognised the loopy scrawl straight away.

Rose,

I’ve found a winner. Just round the corner from the Leaky Cauldron, two bedrooms, and the rent is the cheapest we’ve had so far. Meet me tomorrow at twelve on the corner; I’ve got us a second-viewing!

Dom x

I smiled at the letter as we strolled out of St Mungo’s, hand-in-hand. “It’s from Dom,” I told Scorpius. “She’s found a steal round the corner from The Leaky Cauldron. You fancy coming to see it tomorrow at twelve?”

“Yeah why not?” He said. “Though are you sure you want me there?”

“Of course,” I assured him. “You’re going to be there a lot, I want your opinion.”

“As long as there’s a bed in your room I’m happy,” He said, grinning.

I rolled my eyes as we stepped out onto the busy street, and I frowned up at the cloudy sky, screwing my eyes up as heavy drops of rain fell onto my face.

“Is this June or January?” I joked. I wasn’t exactly dressed for a downpour.

“I like rain,” He told me, as we made our way along the slippery cobbled street of Diagon Alley, holding hands. I shook my head at him, holding my bag over my head.

“Are you crazy?” I laughed.

“It reminds me of you,” He told me, holding the door of a busy restaurant open for me.

I raised my eyebrows at him. “Just what every girl wants to hear,” I said. “Rain reminds my boyfriend of me.”

He responded once we were sitting down, and the waiter had asked us what drinks we were having.

“It always makes me think of our kiss in the rain. That was the kiss that changed everything,” He explained.

I smiled. “That was a good kiss,” I agreed. “Kissing is always so much more passionate when it’s raining!”

“All our kisses are passionate,” He grinned, and I laughed.

“Yeah it wasn’t passionate this morning when I tried to kiss you while you were sleeping and you groaned and rolled over!” I joked.

“I like my sleep,” He said defensively.

 I laughed at him and then smiled as my brother came into view, shaking the rain out of his too-long hair and waving at us. It had been Scorpius’ idea to invite Hugo, and I was extremely grateful; I’d hardly had any time with him since he’d come home.

“Hi!” I said, grinning at him.

“Hey,” He said, taking the seat. As he looked at us, I noticed a familiar expression on his face; his eyes were wide and excited, his cheeks slightly pink, and there was a massive grin stretched across his handsome face.

“What are you so happy about?” I demanded of my brother.

He looked as though he might burst if he held it in any longer. “We’ve been signed!” He exclaimed. “The band – we’ve been signed!”

“Seriously?” Asked Scorpius, looking impressed, while I marvelled at him.

My heart swelled with pride for Hugo; I still saw him as my baby brother, even though he was 19 years old, and an extremely talented musician. We all knew it wasn’t exactly what the family had expected from Hugo, but I was so proud of him in that moment that I could have cried.

“Well done!” I said, getting up to hug him. “Hugo that’s amazing!”

“I know I’m so happy!” He said. “We do our first gig in two weeks so I’ll get you all tickets, I’m so excited!”

“Congratulations mate,” Said Scorpius, smiling at him.

Hugo nodded and then sighed. “So have you talked much to Dad?”

“Not really,” I admitted. “Hugo there’s nothing I can do…he just won’t listen to me, you know what he’s like.”

“I know,” He agreed. “But he’s our Dad…he just wants us to be happy.”

“I am happy!” I insisted, gesturing to Scorpius.

Hugo smiled. “I know you are. Mum is tearing her hair out over it; she’s really upset over it all.”

“Maybe when I move out that will ease the tension,” I said. “You know rather than us being forced to be together like that.”

My brother shrugged. “It’s just not right,” He said. “You and Dad have never fought before…it’s not right.”

“I know,” I nodded. “But that’s just the way it is right now. So tell me about the record deal,” I said, changing the subject. “I’m pretty sure I’m entitled to some sort of copyright hush money since the band is called The Roses!”

*

Within a week, Dominique and I were moving into the new flat. Everything was happening really fast, and amongst it all I hadn’t found the words or the good grace to patch things up with my Dad. It was all I could do to stop Scorpius from feeling guilty; it wasn’t his fault.

Well not really.

“This is the last box,” I said, as I sent the box soaring out to the huge stack I would be shrinking to take with me when I apparated.

Mum and Dad nodded; Mum sad, Dad resigned.

“Well we’ll see you tomorrow at James’ Quidditch match,” Said Mum, hugging me tightly.

“Yeah,” I said, looking at Dad. “See you Dad.”

He looked up at me with a devastated look on his face. “Rosie,” He whispered. “I don’t want this…”
“What?” I asked, quietly.

He shrugged. “You leaving, because of me.”

“I’m not leaving because of you Dad,” I said. “It was always temporary for me to be back with you guys…and anyway I’m an adult, and it’s become difficult for me to live as an adult while I’m living here.”

“Still,” He said. “For you to be leaving us and moving in with him…”

“I’m not moving in with Scorpius,” I told him honestly. “It’s Dom, I’ve told you.”

He shrugged, looking unconvinced. I sighed and took one of his hands in his, and looked into his warm, wonderfully amazing eyes that had always been comforting to me.

“Dad,” I whispered. “I promise you.”

He nodded, his eyes on mine and I blinked, trying to shake away the tears in my eyes. It wasn’t fair; my Dad and I loved each other so much and yet this was tearing us apart. Why couldn’t he just accept it?

“Oh my baby,” He said. “I only want what’s best for you.”

I nodded tearfully and hugged him. He held me back, and I felt like I was five years old again; but it was all wrong. This wasn’t a truce, it was like we were accepting that we couldn’t just forget about it; too much had been said.

It wasn’t the truce everyone had been hoping for, and although we were still the same Dad and Rose, that made it even harder for me to leave.

“I’ll see you both tomorrow,” I said, managing a smile.

Mum was in tears also, looking at us both in anger and love. I waved at them, preceded to the door where I shrunk all the boxes and easily piled them into my handbag, and then apparated out of the place I would always call home once again.

Dominique was already at the flat, along with Scorpius, James, Hugo and Teddy who were helping us move everything.

“It looks amazing,” Said Dom, when it was finally finished.

“Definitely,” I agreed.

The flat was the biggest out of the three I’d lived in, which was pretty crazy considering it was also the cheapest. The rooms were big and spacious, with large windows letting in lots of light. Both of us had room for double beds in our bedrooms and there was still room for the rest of the furniture. The lounge was big too, but somewhat cluttered with all our stuff. The kitchen was modern-looking, with a breakfast bar for eating at. And then unlike my previous home, the bathroom actually had a bath.

When I finally changed into my pyjamas and flopped onto my bed beside Scorpius, I was exhausted after my day.

“Happy to be here?” Asked Scorpius.

“Yeah,” I said. “I love it already. Dom and I are going to have a lot of fun here, I can feel it.”

“Absolutely,” He grinned. “Okay I’m going to head home.”

“Really?” I asked, surprised.

“Well I want to stay,” He admitted. “But I’m guessing you want it to be just you and Dominique for the first night.”

“You guessed correct,” I smiled. “I just don’t want her thinking I’m always going to have you here, that’s all.”

“No problem,” He said.

I smiled again and kissed him. “Even though I most certainly am,” I muttered, raising my eyebrows.

He grinned. “That’s what I like to hear.”

“So I’ll see you tomorrow at the match then?” I asked him, as he made to disapparate.

“I wouldn’t miss it,” He grinned, and then with a loud crack he was gone.

He was barely gone when there was a light knock on my door and Dominique appeared, also in her jammies and holding two glasses of champagne.

“Here’s to our new home, cousin!” She said, handing me a glass.

“To our new home,” I smiled, clinking the glass against hers.

Yes, I was getting the feeling we were going to have a lot of fun here.

*

It was a rare occasion that brought the entire extended Weasley family together on one day, but James’ first match of the season with the Canons was one of them. Everyone one of us had piled into the priority stands, myself standing with Scorpius, Dom and Hugo. Only missing was Albus, and he had sent an owl wishing James good luck and making Harry promise he would let him know the score.

“It’s roasting!” I exclaimed, casting a cooling charm over myself with my wand.

“I know,” Agreed Dominique, “The flat was nice and cool though, wasn’t it?”

“Oh yeah,” I grinned. “It’s perfect!”

Scorpius shushed us frantically as the players all rose up into the air and the balls were released. My eyes searched for James, and I scanned the bright sky until I saw him circling the pitch, flying the very highest out of all the players.

Welcome to the first match of the Quidditch Season, between the Chudley Canons and Puddlemere United!” Announced the voice of Lee Jordan. I distinctly heard my Uncle George, two rows behind, cheering his old friend.

And they’re off!” Shouted Lee, beginning his fast-winded, complicated commentary of the game. I glanced at Scorpius, who was watching intently, his head darting from side to side following players in possession of the Quaffle.

To be honest, I didn’t really get the whole Quidditch thing. Don’t get me wrong; being a Weasley I would be automatically disowned for even hinting that it wasn’t the greatest thing since sliced bread, but it didn’t really do it for me. I didn’t mind playing it, for a laugh, but I’d always found watching it a little boring.

Of course, as it was James playing I wanted to come and watch to show him support; I knew how happy it made him to be back on the pitch after all the drama he’d been through. And so I found myself watching him, as he zoomed back and fourth, the length of the pitch searching hungrily for the Snitch.

And Puddlemere score!” Shouted Lee. “Good start for them, leading 30-0 against Canons!

“If you can even call that a goal!” Shouted Dom, angrily. It was safe to say she took Quidditch a lot more seriously than I did.

I thought vaguely of being back at Hogwarts, when James and Albus were Quidditch rivals, the same year Megan had Allie and I finally got together with Scorpius. The press had a field day, predicting they would be fighting over it; it had been so stupid, and of course as we all knew only too well the only thing that had ever come between the two brothers was not Quidditch, but Beth.

After a very long forty minutes, the Canons mercifully won; none of us could stand a moping James if they lost. The family all went crazy, cheering as James caught the Snitch, myself included, and we all apparated back to The Burrow for lunch to celebrate. Nana Molly didn’t disappoint; the meal was first-class as always.

After lunch I headed back to the flat; Dom was out on a date with some guy and Scorpius was coming over in a few hours, so I was just looking forward to some time to myself, settling down with a magazine, when there was a knock at the door.

I groaned and dragged myself off the couch, to answer the door. I was somewhat surprised to see it was my Mum who had come to visit.

“Is everything okay?” I asked, handing her a coffee.

“It’s fine,” She said. “I just wanted to see you. What with all this with your Dad…well I’ve seen how much its upsetting him and I wanted to make sure you’re okay.”

“Oh,” I said. “I’m okay. I’m just trying to make things work with both him and Scorpius; it’s hard to find a balance.”

“I know,” She said sympathetically.

“Anyway I thought you weren’t getting involved?” I asked, frowning.

“I’m not!” She assured me. “I will not take sides between my own husband and my daughter; it’s utterly ridiculous. But I wanted to-”

I was startled when she paused, her eyes brimming with tears. “Mum?” I whispered.

“I just want you to know that I’m here for you,” She said quietly. “No matter what else happens I’m your Mum and I’m always here for you.”

“I know you are,” I said. This was making me feel so guilty; seeing how my fight with my Dad had affected her.

“But you probably think I’m taking your Dad’s side and I’m not, I promise you! In fact I quite like Scorpius. It’s just hard for Ron; he cares about you so much!”

I nodded. “I know that too.”

She shook her head. “You don’t Rose, not really. Until you have a child of your own you don’t get it. Up until I had you, I thought I could never love anyone more than I loved your Dad…I thought that there surely wasn’t any force in the world greater than the love we shared.” She smiled tearfully. “And then I had you and the way I felt about you was something I can’t even explain. Like I wasn’t on this planet for me or my life anymore; it was for my baby. Same with Hugo.”

She shrugged. “So when someone hurts one of our babies…we get a little protective. And your Dad just finds it hard to let go of that and see you as an adult. You’ll always be that baby girl to us, Rose.”

“But Scorpius has changed,” I told her. “He’s different, and so am I.”

Mum smiled. “I know that, and someday your Dad will too. You just have to be patient with him.”

“I will be,” I promised her. “Thanks Mum.”

“For what?” She asked.

I shrugged. “For being my Mum.”

*

My Mum had barely left, when Dominique returned home, much earlier than I’d expected. She had told me she would most likely be out late, and yet it was only just gone nine.

“You’re back early,” I stated, from the couch where I was still lying reading my magazine.

She nodded. “He was really boring. I had to get out of there.”

I laughed. “There’s one thing I don’t miss about being single; the weird dates.”

She nodded, sitting down beside me and yawning. “Scorp coming over?”

“Yeah he gets off work at ten, so he’ll be over then.” I told her. “Are you okay with that?” I suddenly asked her. Sometimes it was easy to forget the history between Scorpius and Dominique.

“Of course,” She said. “At least one of us should get some action tonight, and it definitely won’t be me.”

“Fair enough,” I laughed. “My Mum came over earlier.”

“What for?” She asked, flicking through my magazine.

I shrugged. “Just to make sure I was okay really. I think I understand where my Dad’s coming from a bit more now. But I still don’t know how to fix things with him.”

“You’ll figure it out in time,” She said surely. “And in the meantime you have a great boyfriend and an even better roommate!”

I laughed. She was right, really. Things could be a lot worse for me than they were. Maybe the whole thing with my Dad was just a test, for me to prove to him that I genuinely did love Scorpius. Well I could put up with that.

And it was like Dom had said; in the meantime I had Scorp and I had her. I had the sneaky feeling that whatever happened next; I was going to be okay. 

*


A/N Thoughts?? I hope you liked it - I wanted to to address two main relationships in this chapter; the relationship firstly between Rose and Dom, and I hope you like them living together, it seemed like the natural step to take for Rose, she couldn't keep living at home and Dom is the ideal roomie! Dominique has been very important to Rose in this story, more-so than she was in Temptation, and she has been extremely loyal. The second relationship I wanted to explore was one I don't feel gets a lot of recognition; the relationship of Rose and Hermione. Being a total Mummy's girl, that probably influenced it, but I imagine Rose being very close to her Mum, even though she somewhat takes her for granted. 

Thanks guys! Reviews appreciated as always!!!xxx


Chapter 23: Heat of the Moment
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]



A/N Hey everybody! I hope you all enjoyed the little holiday from hpff!! I was busy spending the time writing new chapters! Can you all believe this is chapter 23? Just think, this was the point at which I finished Temptation!! Anyways, enjoy!

*

August came around in one of the busiest months in a while; Allie had started at Primary School and after several tears from Megan, she finally accepted that it might be a good thing for her daughter. It was giving her more time to focus on her work as well, plus it meant I saw more of her these days. August also meant that my favourite cousin would soon finally be coming home. I couldn’t wait.

At least we magical folk could somewhat try to make ourselves more comfortable, with the use of cooling charms around our homes, meanwhile the poor Muggles were left to bear it out, carrying their little miniature fans everywhere they went. By the time August came around, it was hotter than I’d ever known it.

“Any joy?” I asked Dominique, handing her an ice-lolly from the jam-packed freezer.

“Nope,” She said, waving her wand at the broken air-conditioning half-heartedly. “It’s no good. How bloody typical, that it doesn’t work the one-off time that we actually need it!”  

“Maybe we should just phone the repair man,” I said, opening my own ice-lolly. “We can’t go on like this.”

“But we’re witches!” She insisted. “We should be able to fix it ourselves!”

“Well if reparo doesn’t work who knows what else to try!” I laughed. “Come on we’ll just phone him.”

Dom shrugged as I looked up the number and muttered “Grandad Arthur would have known how to fix it.”

“Grandad Arthur would have taken it apart by hand and fixed it the Muggle way!” I scoffed. “And I can’t cope much longer, Dom!”

She shrugged again, and after a knock at the door got up to answer it.

“Jesus Christ it’s hot in here!” Called the voice from the doorway. I rolled my eyes.

“Really James?” I asked sarcastically. “Because you know, I was thinking about going to put on a jumper.”

James laughed. He was dressed in three-quarter length khaki shorts, a black t-shirt, and sunglasses, with his three-month old daughter strapped to the baby-carrier on his chest.

“Emma’s getting a little fussy with the heat,” He explained, lifting her out. “And we were just round the corner so I thought I’d bring her here to cool down.”

“Oh look at her!” Grinned Dom. I had to smile too. Beth had dressed her in a lemon sundress, her honey-coloured curls growing thicker each day. Dominique held out her arms to James and he handed Emma to her.

“Will we get you a wee drink of water, Emma?” Dom cooed; a natural with the baby. Ever since her nephew Arthur had come along, Dominique had been totally at ease with babies.

“So what were you two doing?” I asked him as he sat down and promptly started pointing his wand at the broken air-conditioning dials.

“Well I had her for a few hours so we went to the park for a while,” He told me. “And then we had to make a dash to Uncle George’s shop for cover because the press were all over us on Diagon Alley. All wanting a snap of the first grandchild to Harry Potter.”

“Oh no,” I said, sympathetically.

He shrugged. “We just make sure they don’t get one,” He said. “Anyway I wanted to tell you something.”

“What?” I asked.

He gave me a dark look. “Beth gave me some…surprising news today when she was dropping Emma round; she has a boyfriend. He was with her!”

“Are you serious?” I asked.

“Yep,” He said. “His name is Jack. She used to go out with him a year ago when she was in Portugal living. He works out there too and he was home for a few months and they ended up getting back together a couple of weeks back.”

“Wow,” I said. “Isn’t it a little soon?”

“That’s what I thought,” He said. “I mean Emma’s only 12 weeks old. But apparently Jack loves Emma already. He was carrying her when they came round.”

I frowned, noticing the slight resentment in his voice. “Well it’s not as if this Jack is going to take your place or anything.”

He shook his head. “You say that now,” he said. “What if they move in together? And he’s there with Emma all the time…he’ll be like her Dad.”

“But he’s not,” I said, meaningfully.

James shrugged, and then smiled widely as there was a quiet click, and the familiar whirring of the air conditioning kicked in again.

“Oh thank God!” I exclaimed. “You are a life saver.”

“I aim to please,” He said. “How come Malfoy didn’t come round and fix it for you anyways?”

“We were fixing it ourselves!” Assured Dominique, bringing Emma over. “It’s not like girls can’t do things like that James.”

He laughed. “Okay then! So how excited are you that my main man is coming back in a few weeks?”

“Really excited!” I grinned. I had missed Albus more in the months he’d been away than I’d ever thought possible.

“I think they’ll be announcing an engagement when they get back,” Said Dom, slyly. “Just wait, I bet I’m right.”

“Nah, no way!” Said James.

“They’ve only been together for a few months!” I agreed.

“They met in November!” Argued Dom. “That’s ten months; nearly a year!”

“Still, Al wouldn’t propose to a girl after ten months!” I assured her. “Not our Albus.”

“Though in saying that,” Said James, getting up and fastening Emma back into the baby-carrier. “You’d have said our Albus would never go travelling around the world for four months!”

I frowned and Dominique looked triumphant. “See!” She said. “Frankie has changed him for the better! I’d love them to get engaged!”

I looked at James and he shrugged. “Rather them than Beth.”

*

Two days later, I found myself in a very crowded, very warm Muggle bar, waiting amongst my many family and friends for my brother’s band to come to the stage. This would be the second time we’d see Hugo perform, but the first time had been a tiny gig in a dingy pub; in the weeks that had passed since then they had started to build up a small but loyal following, both magical and non-magical communities alike. So tonight was bigger, and sufficiently more exciting.

“Your Dad is looking at me as if I’m about to mug you or something,” Scorpius muttered in my ear and I sighed.

“Just ignore him,” I said. “He doesn’t realise he’s doing it.”

Victoire, who was standing on my other side with Teddy, nodded. “Just like Dominique doesn’t realise she’s doing that!” She said in disgust.

Scorpius and I looked over, and I laughed. Dom was locked in a tight embrace, passionately kissing the latest guy she’d been seeing. His name was Lewis and apparently he was God’s gift. Apparently. Of course Dominique had said this about everyone she’d ever gone out with, including Scorpius, which definitely hadn’t been true.

“Hi!” Called a voice from behind. I turned round and smiled at Megan, who had just arrived.

“I thought you couldn’t come,” I said, while Scorpius greeted her.

“Steven said I should come and he would watch Allie. He thinks it’s a good idea for me to get some separation from her to make it easier for her to be away from me now she’s started you-know-what ,” She said, rolling her eyes.

“You-know-what?” Asked Scorpius, looking confused.

“School,” I said, shaking my head at Megan. “Allie’s loves it Megan!”

“You’re not allowed to judge me!” She said sternly. “You don’t know what I’m going through.”

“I completely agree,” Said Victoire, who had overheard. “I dread the thought of Arthur going to school and he’s only six months!”

Megan nodded. “I’m just taking a while to get used to it.” She said defensively. “Anyway, I can’t wait to see little baby Hugo! I can’t believe your brother is like a rock star!”

“Believe me, neither can any of us!” I joked. “He is really good though.”

By the time the band came on, the bar was full to the brim. When Hugo and his three band-mates walked out onto the small stage, we all cheered like we were at a massive arena concert. It felt like we were.

Hugo played bass in the band, and was a vocalist; however his best friend, Paul, was the lead singer. Hugo had written a lot of their songs, but he preferred not to be at the forefront of the band.

They started with a fast-paced track that had us all jumping and myself singing along, as I had heard the songs long ago when he’d first gotten into writing songs. After a few of these, they played a slower song called Get Me Through the Night, which Hugo had written the night Dad had his heart attack. I found myself looking at Dad remorsefully during that one.

After playing a total of six songs off their album, the band went off and we all dispersed into groups at the tables around the bar. I tentatively went over to Mum and Dad, who were sitting with Ginny and Harry, towing Scorpius by the hand.

“Hi,” I said, smiling around at them. “Hugo was amazing, wasn’t he?”

“He was great,” Agreed Harry. “Hi Scorpius, how are you?”

“Good,” Nodded Scorp. “Looking forward to seeing Al next week.”

“Oh join the club,” Smiled Ginny. “I can’t wait to have him home, it’s been so quiet!”

“Yeah,” Smiled Scorpius.

“Did you enjoy the gig?” Asked Mum, smiling at him pleasantly, while Dad looked on.

“Yeah I did,” He said. “And they got a really good turnout, as well.”

“They did,” Said Dad. “Mark was here, Rose.”

I froze. “Oh was he?” I asked, trying to sound normal. “I didn’t see him.”

“Well he left after they went off,” He told me. “He probably would have come to say hello to you but…” He glared at Scorpius.

That was it.  That honestly did it. Here was my Dad, who said all he wanted was for me to be happy, and that he didn’t want me to get hurt, and little did he know hurting me was exactly what he was doing.

“You know what Dad,” I said, shakily. “When you’re ready to grow up, talk to me then.”

I took Scorpius’ hand and marched away, shaking with anger. I’d had enough.

*

“Are you okay?” I whispered, late one night the following week.

Scorpius nodded, but his expression was distant, distracted. I moved closer to him, stroking my hand along his bare chest.

“Talk to me,” I said. “What is it?”

His eyes tightened and I sighed. He turned to look at me and I held his gaze, willing him to tell me what was making him so distant with me this evening.

“I’m really tired,” He muttered.

“Tired of what?”

He looked at me with a pained, apologetic expression, and his words came out in a whisper. “I’m tired of failing you.”

“You’re not failing me!” I exclaimed, in shock. “Why would you say that? How could you be failing me?”

He sighed, shaking his head. “I’m driving a wedge between you and your Dad, and it’s all because I was such an arsehole four years ago!”

“Exactly,” I said. “It’s in the past; my Dad just has to realise that. It’s been four years Scorpius!”

“But this is all my fault…I shouldn’t be letting you put me before your family.”

I tensed. This was the kind of talk I was afraid of; Scorpius was saying the kind of thing that made me panic and think he might just take himself out of the equation like he had before. I couldn’t go through that again.

“Please listen to me,” I whispered. “My Dad is my Dad…no matter how angry I might make him, or how much he dislikes the choices I make; I know nothing can stop him from being my Dad.” I swallowed. “And I know he’ll never leave me.”

Scorpius closed his eyes. “But you don’t know I’ll never leave you.”

“I’m not trying to hurt you….I’m just being honest, Scorp.”

Scorpius sighed and kissed me with a sort of frenzied passion. I knelt up and put my arms around his neck, kissing him back. He pulled us down onto the pillows and trailed his lips along my throat.

“Is it ever going to be easy for us?” He muttered in a low voice.

I smiled. “This is easy.” I told him, kissing him. “It’s as easy as breathing. The rest will work itself out.”

Although I could see I had not erased his guilt, and his eyes were still conflicted, he nodded and pulled me to him, his hands stroking along my hips, our conversation reaching its end as our physical needs took over.

“Easy as breathing,” He agreed, before pressing his lips to mine again.

*

My feet were literally killing me, and I had another hour to go before my shift at St Mungo’s was finished. It was only when I’d started working in the baking heat I’d realised how it truly felt to be exhausted at work.

I sighed and a frown pulled my eyebrows together.

“Do you not know, Healer Weasley?” Asked Johnny’s Mum anxiously, while the seven-year old boy smiled happily.

“Not exactly,” I admitted. That was an understatement. I was stumped; the boy had been brought in with an extremely bizarre looking rash on his arms and I didn’t have a clue what had caused it. I only knew it was magical, because the rash was blue.

“I’m going to just check with my ward supervisor,” I told them. “I’ll be back in just one moment.”

“Healer Greene,” I sighed.

“Rose,” She replied, smiling at me. “How can I help?”

“A little boy has a blue rash on his arms and I’m totally stumped. He hasn’t been in contact with any potions or animals that could have brought an allergic reaction. I don’t get it!” I complained, hoping desperately she would know.

She smiled again. “Okay, so what is specific about just now?” She asked.

I raised my eyebrows, confused, so she elaborated, fanning herself dramatically.

Oh!” I said. “It’s hot. The weather!”

“Okay,” She said. “So we’ve been experiencing extremely warm, outlandish temperatures lately, which affect the lifestyles of both Muggles and magical people alike. For example, we find a surge in the number of people who take to gardening, would you agree?”

“Yes,” I said slowly, not quite seeing what she was getting at.

“So could the boy perhaps have been within access to new plants, maybe planted by Mum or Dad? Maybe a plant that wasn’t there before, because it thrives in good weather. Perhaps a plant which can commonly provoke a blue rash?”

“Flutterby bush,” I muttered, shaking my head at myself. “Got it, thanks Healer Greene!”

“Okay Johnny so like I told your Mum just make sure you rub on the ointment three times a day for the next few days and the rash will clear right up for you.”

He nodded. “Can I go out and play now?”

“Yeah,” I smiled. “But stay away from magical plants!”

As I was clearing up I glanced at the clock and saw I had just half an hour left. Though in saying that there were no more patients left. I waved everything I’d been using to treat Johnny’s rash away with my wand, and then nearly jumped out my skin when a pair of hands came down on my arms.

I whipped around in fright only to grin at the intruder in delight.

“Albus!” I exclaimed, throwing my arms around my cousin. “Oh I’ve missed you.”

“I’ve missed you too girl.” He muttered. “But that’s me back! Back to reality,” He said, looking around at the hospital nostalgically. “I’m telling you it feels like more than four months!”

“I’ll bet,” I smiled.

“So with the small exception of the birth of my niece, what have I missed?” He asked, as we strolled to the desk so I could update Johnny’s notes.

I rolled my eyes. “Well Dominique and I are living together!”

“You’re joking!” He laughed. “How did that come about?”

I shrugged. “It was about time for me to move out of Mum and Dad’s, and I thought it would be fun so we decided to get a flat! It’s amazing Albus, right on the corner of Diagon Alley.”

“I can’t wait to see it!” He said. “And how’s Scorp?”

“He’s good,” I replied, filing the notes away again. “He’s been feeling really guilty about all this carry-on with my Dad but apart from that he’s fine. Oh my God, Al,” I said suddenly. “Hugo’s band got signed!”

“Holy shit,” He said, “Right, we need to go for a drink, this is too much to take in.”

Healer Greene ended up letting me go fifteen minutes early, as it was dead and she could see how excited I was to have Al back. We stopped in at the Leaky Cauldron, with me promising to show Al the flat when we were done.

“-and we went to his concert the other night it was fantastic!” I gushed. I had spent the last hour filling him in on everything, and he had been telling me about all the wondrous things he’d seen while travelling.

“That guy’s really done well for himself,” Albus admitted, fanning himself with a menu. “By the way how did it get so fucking hot here?”

 I laughed. “We’ve all been wondering the same thing. So how’s Frankie?”

“Good,” He said. “I think she’s sad to be home in a way, same as me. It was so much fun Rose; you have to go travelling one day.”

“Definitely,” I said. “By the way Dominique thinks you’re going to have come back engaged to Frankie, just to warn you.”

“Jesus Christ!” He laughed. “Don’t get me wrong, I love the bones of her. But I’m not ready to get married! You and Scorp will be engaged before us.”

“I think I’ve had enough weddings to last me a while,” I joked.

He nodded. “Who’d have thought we’d end up here, Rosie,” He said, smiling. “Both of us actually in a happy relationship for once!”

I laughed. “It was bound to happen at some point!” I said. “But I’m so gutted about things with my Dad, Al. I don’t know what to do and everyone keeps just telling me I’ll figure it out but it’s been weeks and I still haven’t!”

He looked at me for a couple of seconds and then nodded. “Okay,” He said. “I will talk to him.”

I stared at him. “Really?”

He grinned. “If there’s anyone who knows how to forgive Scorpius Malfoy it’s me.”

“What do you mean?” I asked, frowning. Albus had never talked about this before.

He looked thoughtful. “I don’t think you ever got how hard it all was for me…obviously because it was ten times harder for you but…well Scorpius was – is – my best mate. And I trusted him not to hurt one of the few most important people in my life and then he went and broke your heart.”

“When I first saw you, after he left,” He went on. “I could have killed him with my bare hands. You were so…altered. He had just put out the fire inside you and I wanted him dead.”

I looked at the table uncomfortably, trying not to remember the unthinkable days following the night he’d left. I didn’t like to think about it.

“So my point is that if I could forgive him, then I think your Dad should be able to as well.”

“But how did you?” I whispered.

He shrugged. “It didn’t take me long to figure out that he just made a mistake Rose. Just like we all do. I know it was a pretty big one, but as soon as I saw him I knew he regretted it.” Albus sighed. “I’m not a saint after all; look what I did to Beth.”

“Like I said, he made a mistake. And everyone makes mistakes, and the truth is if we didn’t, we wouldn’t be human.”

“That’s very wise of you Albus.” I said quietly.

“Hey,” He said grinning. “I’ve seen the fucking Taj Mahal! I’m all about the wise comments these days.”

I laughed. “Thanks Al.”

He smiled. “Anytime, Rosie,”

When we headed to the flat so Albus could see it, I was surprised to find Dom was not alone. When I first saw the tall, dark haired figure from behind standing in our kitchen, I initially thought she’d brought back some bloke, but then he turned around and I saw it was James.

“Al!” He said, rushing to hug his brother.

“Good to see you, man!” Said Al, hugging him back.

I smiled at him, but soon realised James’ expression was all wrong. His eyes were wide and panicked; his face pale. I rushed to his side.

“What is it?” I asked, glancing at Dominique, who looked furious. “What’s going on?”

James sighed. “Beth has just been round. She’s going back to Portugal with the boyfriend. For good.”

Al and I frowned at him in confusion, while Dom folded her arms, her expression seething.

“She’s…” Said James, taking a deep breath. “She’s taking Emma.” 

*



A/N Thoughts???

Chapter 24: Age Is Just A Number
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Hiya everyone! Thanks for the lovely response the last chappie, your reviews continue to make me smile like a crazy lady everyday! Sorry if I haven't responded to some of them, I have been trying to get this chapter finished but I was struggling a bit with it and I've been really busy, but I received some amazing news yesterday which inspired me to get it up for you all - I'm going to be a Godmother!!! Enjoy!
*



I hammered my first on the door, until it hurt. I was flanked on either side by Dominique and Albus, naturally. How prominent the two of them had become in my life.

After a couple of seconds, I pounded the door again, taking a deep breath to steady myself. The door finally opened.

“Rose!” Said Beth, smiling. “Dom, Al!”

“Forget the pleasantries, Beth,” I seethed. “You’re not doing it. You’re not taking her from him.”

Beth sighed. “You’d better come in.”

We followed her into the large, beautiful house of her parents into the kitchen, where Emma was sitting in her high chair. They seemed to be the only ones home. I noticed Albus looking around the house with a reminiscent expression on his face. This had been the first time he’d been in her house since they’d split up five years ago.

“Okay, before you all start,” She said, raising her hand. “Can you please consider the possibility that I might be doing what’s best for Emma here?”

“Bullshit!” Exclaimed Dom. “How can it be best for her to take her miles away from her own Dad?”

“She would have a better life in Portugal!” Said Beth. “My job there is really well-paid, my lifestyle is so much better. I want her to have the best life possible and I believe this is the way to do it.”

“With Jack,” I muttered, disgusted.

“Jack coming with us is regardless,” She said, defensively. “I’d have been doing this with or without him. It just so happens that he has the opportunity to work out there too, he worked out there long before I did.” She shrugged. “This was always the plan! I was always going back!”

“And so when were you going to run that past James?” Asked Albus, quietly.

“Emma is my daughter; I am her legal guardian. I make these decisions, not James. And it’s not as if he’ll never see her again!”

“Oh well that makes it all right then,” I said, sarcastically. “Beth as if it wasn’t bad enough that you lied about a miscarriage! But then you let James get attached to Emma, let him settle into the role of being her Dad, and then yank her away from him? What is wrong with you?”

“I’m doing what’s best for Emma.” She said again.

“But it’s so soon!” Said Dom. “Emma’s only sixteen weeks old! And you’re like shacking up with this Jack and you’ve only been going out with him for what? Two minutes?”

“Nearly two months and I’ve known him for years! I was in a relationship with him, when we were both in Portugal, for a year!” Her eyes narrowed. “And I’m perfectly aware of how old my daughter is thank you very much.”

“So what Jack will just be a new Daddy to Emma?” I asked.

Beth shrugged. “I would never stop James from seeing her. But maybe this will be best for him…he’s not exactly loved being a Dad, maybe this is the escape he’s been hoping for.”

“You don’t know him in the slightest if you think that,” Muttered Albus. “What happened to you Beth?”

“Alright, that’s enough!” She said angrily. “How dare you lot coming traipsing into my home and judge me like you’re bloody saints! As if you’ve never made any mistakes!” She looked at me first, then Dom. “You two are cousins, and you treated each other like dirt in sixth year! Fighting like cat and dog, stealing each others’ boyfriends!”

Her eyes settled on Al. “And you. How dare you judge me? What happened to me? What happened to you? You cheated on me with that slut and then you judge me for sleeping with James, and lying. Well that’s exactly what you did!”

We all stayed silent, cringing as we were reminded of our past mistakes. We heard the door open and then close, and footsteps approach the kitchen.

“Beth?” Called a male voice. He entered, tall, and handsome with dark blonde hair.

Beth took a deep breath. “This is Jack,” She said. “Jack, this is Rose, Dominique and Albus.”

“Ah,” He said, uncomfortably. “Hi.”

“Nice to meet you,” Said Dom, coldly.

“Look,” She said. “I’m sorry if you don’t feel the same way, but I’m doing what I believe is right for my daughter. She’s mine, she lives with me, and it’s up to me where she goes. I’m taking her and that’s it.”

“You can’t do this!” Said Al, angrily.

“She’s her mother, mate,” Said Jack, who had picked Emma out of her highchair and was bouncing her lightly.

“Yeah and my brother is her father, mate,” He said, clenching his fists. “Who the hell are you?”

“That’s enough Albus!” Beth said, frantically.

“I’m the guy who’s been helping Beth with the baby for the last two months!” Jack said, sounding angry too. “While her Dad was busy out playing Quidditch and signing autographs.”

“I swear to God if you weren’t holding my niece I would beat the shit out of you right now,” Albus said in a low voice.

“Albus we’re going,” I said firmly. “Now.”

Albus stared at Jack and Emma for several minutes before finally turning to me and nodding.

“You’re not getting away with this Beth,” Said Dom, surely.

Beth shook her head, with tears in her eyes. “I’m sorry, but I’ve made my decision. I’m going back to work in Portugal, and Emma is coming with me.”

“James’ lawyer will be in touch,” I said coldly. I grasped Al’s arm and marched out of the kitchen, Dominique behind us.

As we dissaparated we heard the muffled sob of Beth, from the kitchen.

*

“That was a good line, Rose,” James commented. “It would of course be more fitting if I actually had a lawyer.”

“Well I was improvising!” I said. “You know what it’s like in the heat of the moment! Anyway that’s why we’re all here; my Mum’s the Head of Magical Law – if anyone can advise you she can!”

We both looked over at Mum, who was sitting leafing through a thick book called Familial Law; she nodded, but did not look up.

“Yes but she won’t be able to represent James,” Said Uncle harry, sitting down at the busy table full of Potters and Weasleys. “She probably won’t be allowed anywhere near that case.”

I sighed. Myself, Dominique, Hugo, James, Albus, Lily, Mum, and Dad had all gathered at the Potters to discuss what to do about Emma. Nobody else in the family had been told about Beth’s plans yet.

“And even if she could,” Added Ginny, setting down a plate of crisps in the middle at the table. “This isn’t an easy one. Courts almost always give custody to the mother. Especially when it’s a child as young as Emma.”

“Yeah but think of what we can offer Emma!” Said Lily, desperately.

“Stop it!” Exclaimed James. “I don’t want this. I don’t want custody or anything like that. Emma belongs with her Mum, and I’m not disputing that. I just don’t think she should be allowed to take her away to another country!”

Harry sighed and looked at Mum. “Hermione, we’re waiting with bated breath here.”

My Mum finally looked up from the book and smiled at James. It was not the smile of someone who had all the answers.

“Are you on Emma’s birth certificate?” She asked him.

James nodded. “I went with Beth to register her birth.”

“That’s good,” Said Mum. “If not you basically wouldn’t have any parental rights. So you’re saying you don’t want to fight Beth for custody James, but the truth is the best angle you can play this from is requesting a joint custodial agreement. It will show the Wizengamot that you are serious about being in Emma’s life long-term.”

He sighed. “I don’t want to put Beth through that.”

Ginny looked furious, but didn’t comment. Her feelings about Beth had completely deteriorated ever since she found out about the fake-miscarriage, and this had just been the cherry on top.

“It would make things a lot easier for you,” Said Mum. “Especially in the future. Say for arguments sake you persuade Beth not to go; what if she decides to leave in three years. If you don’t have at least joint custody you can’t stop her!”

“But I’m her Dad!” He insisted.

“But she lives with her Mum!” My Mum reminded him. “Beth gives her a home, she supports her, she feeds her. I mean James do you even pay any kind of support for Emma?”

James looked uncomfortable. “She never asked!” He said, desperately.

Mum shrugged. “And clearly you never offered. Look James I’m not trying to be mean; you know I love you and I’ve seen how much you care for Emma. That’s your Aunt and your Godmother talking.” She shrugged again, putting her pen down. “But as the Head of Magical Law? I would give Beth full custody.”

“Hermione!” Said Ginny, frowning.

“But this is what I’m saying!” Said Mum. “The only way you will be taken seriously is if you apply for joint custody James, which means taking your fare share of caring for Emma, rather than just when it suits you.”

“Mum can’t James just appeal against Beth’s right to take Emma away? Like can’t the Wizengamot order that Emma has to stay in Britain?” I suggested.

Mum sighed. “He can try. But it’s going to take a lot of persuading James. Unless you’re really serious about this, I would advise you stay away. You could end up losing all your rights to her if they don’t think you’re serious about being in her life.”

“Well that was tense,” I said to Dom a half hour later as we returned home.

“You can say that again,” She muttered. “What do you think will happen?”

“I dunno,” I admitted. “I just keep thinking how I can’t believe this is Beth! Our Beth!”

“I know,” She agreed.

I sighed and got up to answer the light knock at our door. It was after eleven, and we still had visitors; this flat was like a fucking knocking shop.

“Oh hi!” I said, letting my best friend in and giving her a hug. “What are you doing here?”

“I just wanted to see you guys,” Megan said, flopping down onto the sofa. “I was jealous, thinking of you both having a laugh here.”

“Where are Allie and Stevie?” I asked.

“Allie’s in bed, and Steven’s doing some work stuff. So I decided to come and bother you.”

“Well good,” Said Dom. “You can help us dissect exactly how Beth ended up so utterly fucked up.”

“Dom,” I said, frowning. “She’s not fucked up. She’s just…”

“A Mum,” Said Megan, shrugging. “Judge her, you might. But she has totally different priorities now from what she had before. Everything’s changed for her.”

“I get that,” I agreed. “But Megan, if things had been different between you and Steven, surely you would never have stopped him from seeing Allie.”

“I wouldn’t.” She agreed. “But I’m pretty sure if I told him I was moving to Portugal and taking Allie with me, and he couldn’t stop me, then he would move to Portugal too, just to be with Allie.”

“But why should he have to? He has rights to Allie same as you do.” Stated Dom, who was now in the kitchen, mixing what sounded like cocktails. I rolled my eyes.

“Well I don’t know,” Said Megan. “It’s different for me and him; we’re married. We are both Allie’s legal guardians.”

“So what about before you were married? When you’d just left Hogwarts and Allie was just a baby.”

“Well then she lived with me,” She shrugged. “So I was her legal guardian, I made the decisions.”

“But Steven was on the birth certificate,” Said Dom, handing us each a glass. “And that gives him rights,” She said, quoting my Mum.

“Ugh, my head hurts with all this legal talk,” I said. “Let’s talk about something else.”

“Yes,” Smiled Megan, taking a sip from her cocktail. “Let’s talk about you and Scorpius! How is it going?”

“Fine,” I said. “I actually haven’t seen him in a few days; we’ve both been crazy busy this week but I’m staying at his tomorrow.”

“You know it doesn’t bother me having him here!” Said Dom, rolling her eyes.

“I know!” I told her. “But I’m not passing up on an opportunity to sleep in that king sized! Plus, haven’t you got Lewis coming here tomorrow?”

“I do,” She admitted.

“So things are getting pretty serious with him then?” Asked Megan, nudging her.

“Easy Bryce,” Said Dominique, firmly. “Just because you were married with a kid by the time you were like twelve doesn’t mean I have to start.”

Megan laughed. “You’re ridiculous. And it’s Finnegan!”

“Once a Bryce, always a Bryce,” I muttered, grinning.

“I’ve got to admit,” She said. “I thought I’d be the only Mum out of us five for longer than five years…”

“Yeah and I definitely never expected Beth to be the next one to have a baby!” Said Dom, shaking her head.

“Well who did you expect?” I asked.

Dominique shrugged. “I dunno…you? Me? Definitely not Sophie!”

I laughed. “Well I’m not having a baby, mate, not for a few years anyway. There’s more chance of Megan having another baby first.”

Megan gave us a significant look. “You might not be far off there.”

Dom and I stared at her in silence for several seconds.

What?” I whispered. “Are you…pregnant?”

“No!” She laughed. “Oh God no! But actually…well Steven and I were talking the other night and he said…” She sighed. “He said he wants another baby.”

“Jesus Christ,” Whispered Dominique.

“Yeah I know,” She replied. “That was pretty much my reaction.”

“Do you want another baby?” I asked, carefully.

She sighed again. “Don’t get me wrong; I love Allie with everything I have. And I would love to have more kids one day. One day! I’m fucking 22!”

“Yeah but by normal standards you’re a pretty old twenty-two year old.” I pointed out. “We are normal twenty-year old girls, me and Dom. You’re mature for your age, with your husband and your daughter.”

“Yeah I know,” She said. “And now Steven wants another baby. And I don’t!”

“Okay so just don’t have one,” Said Dom.

“I know,” She said again. “But should I want one?”

“I mean maybe now that Allie’s at school this is finally a chance to get some of your life back,” I said. “Not that you resent her or anything like that…but it allows you some freedom. If you have a baby now, it’s back to square one.”

“Exactly,” She said. “And I just don’t think he understands the kind of stress you’re under when you’re pregnant; not just emotionally, but physically too!” She exclaimed. “You know I quite like fitting into my skinny jeans!”

I laughed at her and she looked at me, shaking her head.

“Fuck you,” She muttered, grinning.

“Such appalling language from a Mother!” I joked.

“Yeah yeah, whatever,” She said, draining her drink and getting up. “We’ll see how bloody funny it all is when you two get pregnant.”

Dom laughed. “At this rate the only person I’ll be having a baby with will be Rose!”

“Well you could do a lot worse,” I told her, nodding.

She smiled. “So true.”

*

“So she said she’s leaving in a week,” Said James, emotionlessly.

“And do you know what you’re doing about it yet?” I asked him, carefully eyeing his reaction.

“Nope.” He said. “I’ll tell you something though; that arsehole Jack will not be anywhere Emma if I have anything to do with it.”

“Are you taking legal action or not?” I asked him firmly.

“I don’t think so,” He said. “Beth might be a screwed up bitch, but she’s still the mother of my child. I have to be mature about this; I’m not dragging her through court.”

“So what are you going to do?”

He grinned, and I was shocked at the calm look on his face when he was facing losing his daughter.

“I’m going to convince her to stay.”

I raised my eyebrows. “And how will you do that?”

He winked at me. “Don’t worry Rosie; I have a plan.”

“James you can’t mess about on this!” I said. “This is serious I don’t think you’re going to be able to just talk her round.”

“You really need to have more faith in me,” He said, surely. “This is my baby we’re talking about; do you really think I’d take it anything less than completely, absolutely serious?”

“Fair enough,” I said. “I just don’t think you can talk your way around it. Beth has a life out there. I think we all keep forgetting that she was only supposed to be home for a month! And then in that month she fell pregnant and everything got totally fucked up!”

He nodded. “Yeah I know.”

“Exactly,” I said. “So…now well it’s been a year since she first came home for that short visit. Maybe she’s ready to get back to her life.”

“She is,” He said. “I get it. But she’s not going anywhere with Emma, and that’s the end of it.”

I smiled weakly at him, and hugged him tightly. “I hope you’re right, James. Now I have to go.”

“No problem,” He said. “I’ll keep you posted.”

“And I’ll see you tomorrow night?” I asked.

“For Dom’s 23rd? I wouldn’t miss it!” He said. “I can’t believe how old we’re all getting…you know technically Dom should have been in my year.”

“No,” I disagreed. “September 3rd – she was the oldest person in our year, but she still made the cut-off. You know Sophie’s just turned twenty-two last month? So Dom is almost a year older than her.”

“Weird,” Said James. “So it’s Dom, then Beth? Then Megan, you and Sophie.”

“Yep,” I said. “Dom is September, Beth and Megan are both November, then obviously I’m April, like you, and then there’s Sophie in August.”

“And Albus is February. Man so Beth’s birthday is in like three months? I suppose I’ll have to get her something.”

I laughed. “I’m not so sure about that.”

“When is Scorpius’ birthday then?” He asked me, as we got up to leave the café where we were having lunch.

“December,” I told him. “The fourth of December.”

“So his is the next birthday,” He said, nodding.

“No!” I said. “My Mum’s is the next birthday! She’s clinically depressed about the fact she’s going to be forty-eight…just another year closer to fifty!”

James laughed. “We’ll have to have a big party for her birthday then. Anyway I have to get off Rose, but I’ll catch up with you tomorrow.”

“See you,” I said.

The rest of the night and the following day passed by quickly, and before I knew it I was getting everything ready for Dominique’s party. Her new boyfriend, Lewis, had taken her out for a meal so back at the flat myself, Scorpius, Al, and Frankie were getting everything ready.

“How crazy is this?” Said Al, as the large Happy Birthday banner hung itself with a flick of his wand. “Dom is 23! We’re getting so old!”

“I find it quite depressing to be honest,” Said Scorpius. “It was so simple when were still seventeen.”

I smiled. “Seventeen was a good one, wasn’t it?”

He grinned at me, and I knew we were thinking about the same thing. We continued getting the place ready, hanging banners and balloons, preparing food and drinks for when everyone would arrive. Planning a surprise party for the person I lived with had been a lot more difficult than I would have imagined, but thankfully we had got there in the end. Just.

“What do you think was your favourite age?” Asked Frankie.

“Twenty-two,” Said Al, straight away. “This year; the year I saw the world with you.”

“Don’t be so gay!” I joked, laughing at him. He shook his head as the other two joined in.

“Well what about you then?” He asked, frowning at me.

“Hmm,” I said, thoughtfully. “Eighteen, I think.”

Scorpius glanced at me and I shrugged, smiling. He knew why my favourite age so far had been eighteen, when I was eighteen my life had been idyllic and incomparable; I had just left Hogwarts, I was in Healer training and I was living with Scorpius. And he hadn’t left me yet.

I could tell the trip down memory lane was about to get a little uncomfortable, but thankfully we were saved any awkwardness by the first knock at the door.

About an hour later, everyone had arrived, lastly Dom and Lewis. I was a little gutted when she had given the most fake reaction I’d ever seen, and she’d confessed to me not long after that she had known for weeks what I’d been planning. She was too fly, that one.

It was a good party though, ruined surprises aside. A mixture of Dom’s family and friends had all shown up to wish her a happy birthday, and were currently dancing like fools in our thankfully spacious living room.

“Well done, darling!” Said Mum, as I entered the kitchen and found her and Aunt Ginny standing there. “You’ve done great, this party is lovely.”

“Oh thanks,” I said, shaking my head. “Albus and Scorpius helped me loads though, it’s not like I did it myself.”

“Well it’s definitely a good night, anyway,” Said Ginny, smiling. “Your Dad and Harry seem to think it’s them turning 23,” She said, motioning out to the living room where the pair of them were dancing in a way that should be illegal.

I laughed. “Well at least Dad is actually having fun. I wasn’t even sure if he would show up.”

“Don’t worry about it Rose,” Ginny told me earnestly. “Honestly, Ron has always been like this; he didn’t speak to me for days when I got back together with your Uncle Harry. He doesn’t mean it; it’s just in his nature.”

I shrugged. “There’s not much I can do anyway. When he’s ready to talk to me he will.”

Mum nodded, looking a little upset, but resigned. I felt bad, knowing how much it was bothering her, but there was nothing else I could do.

“Rose,” Called a familiar voice. I smiled up at Dom as she joined us and hugged me tightly. “Thank you so much for this party!”

“Well I know it’s not quite as good as Allie’s; I didn’t think we could fit a bouncy castle,” I joked.

“I don’t care I love it!” She gushed.

“Oh I have your present,” I said, towing her to my room by the hand. “Now it’s a little crazy and I’ll understand if you don’t like it. Plus it’s sort of for both of us really but…”

I reached into my wardrobe to retrieve the huge pink box, trying not to shake it too much.

“Happy Birthday,” I said, placing it on my bed.

She grinned at me and lifted the lid excitedly. The chocolate-coloured, six week old puppy jumped out of the box and into Dom’s arms, who squealed in delight.

“You got me a puppy?” She exclaimed.

“Us, technically.” I said. “And we need to train it because I can’t cope with pee on the carpet and all that…”

“I love it,” She said. “Thank you. Is it a boy or a girl?”

“A boy,” I grinned. “There are enough girls living here! So what are you calling it?”

Dom looked down at the puppy, which was jumping about in her arms, and frowned thoughtfully, then nodded. “Charlie.” She said. “Charlie Weasley, after Uncle Charlie.”

“Charlie,” I nodded, laughing. “I’m sure he’ll be thrilled.”

“Right I’m going to show Megan, she’ll love this!” She said. “Are you coming?”

“Two minutes,” I said, smiling as Scorpius came into the room.

“Yeah it better be,” She said, firmly. She pressed her hands over Charlie’s ears and then whispered; “No sex on my birthday!”

We both laughed, and she left us alone. As soon as the door had closed, Scorpius rushed over to me and kissed me.

“So she liked the puppy?” He muttered.

“She loved it,” I nodded, kissing him back. “I feel like I haven’t seen you in ages.”

“I know,” He said. “I think we should go on holiday.”

“Yeah!” I said, lighting up at the idea. “I haven’t been away since the Bahamas and that was ages ago.”

“We’ll get something booked then,” He said. “And for now – let’s party Weasley!”

The words were so normal, so flippant, obviously not something he had even thought about. But those three words; let’s party Weasley – they caused my entire body to shake as a wave of déjà vu washed over me, and I was taken back to another time and place entirely…

“It’s absolutely pissing down!” I complained, as we ran along the slippy street, pushing the pram between us.

“Rose will you please stop swearing in front of the fucking baby?” Megan said irritably. I raised my eyebrows at her and we both burst out laughing.

She let us into her house, and rushed in with the bags of shopping she had picked up. I took off my coat and shoes, and then picked up my sixteen month old god-daughter out of the pram.

Allie looked grumpy and tired as I took off her little wet raincoat. “I’d better put her up to bed for a few hours,” Said Megan. “She’s exhausted.”

“I’ll do it,” I said. I carried Allie up to her room and got her ready for bed. She was asleep almost the second her head hit the pillow; I smiled at her and stroked her soft hair for a moment, before leaving her room to rejoin Megan in the kitchen.

“So how are you and Scorp getting on in the little flat?” She asked, grinning.

“It’s so good,” I replied, helping her put the food away. “I’m looking forward to tonight!”

“Oh me too!” She said. “I still feel guilty about sending Allie off to my Mum and Dad’s though…”

“Megan!” I said. “It’s New Year’s Eve! Allie is only 1 and doesn’t have a clue what’s going on; it doesn’t mean anything to her that it’s New Year. But you are 18 and this is supposed to be a really fun night.”

“I know…” She said, looking doubtful.

“Plus you spent her first Hogmanay with her. And you were with her for Christmas and everything. Oh come on it will be fun!”

Megan smiled. “Yeah it will. So…Steven’s coming, yeah?”

“Yes, he’ll be there,” I said in a teasing voice. “So you can make yourself all beautiful for him!”

“Shut up,” She said. “It’s not like that with us.”

“Whatever,” I said. “There’s something between you two and everyone knows it.”

Megan laughed. “Do you really think he’s still interested in me then?”

“Definitely!” I said. I laughed as she went red, getting up to answer her front, at which there a loud knock.

“Hey,” Said Scorpius, as he followed Megan into the kitchen and kissed me. “How was your day?”

“Good,” I said. “I was just discussing how Megan will obviously be getting off with Steven tonight.”

“Oh my God Rose!” She exclaimed. “That is so inappropriate!”

“How?” Scorpius laughed. “You guys have a baby together!”

 Megan shrugged, smiling slightly. “I don’t know,” She admitted. “I mean you said it; we have a baby. I have to be careful…things are going really well with us just now but I have to put Allie first. We can only be together if it’s right for her.”

“Megan,” I said softly. “This is Steven we’re talking about. Steven – he’s Allie’s Dad! And he’s the love of your life! Of course it’s right.”

Scorpius nodded. “You know she’s right, Bryce.”

Megan shrugged. “Well we’ll see what happens, okay?”

“Okay,” I laughed. “Come on we better get everything ready for tonight,” I muttered to Scorpius. “I can’t believe we thought this was a good idea, we have so much to do and so many people coming and-”

“Rose calm down you maniac,” He said. “It’ll be fine.” He grinned at me and took my hand in his. “Come on; let’s party Weasley…”

I shook my head, smiling fondly at the memory. The three of us; Megan, Scorpius and I, had only been eighteen at the time. I was so young and so very naïve. That was exactly a year before Scorpius had left me, and when I thought on it part of me wished I could run into that memory and warn myself of what was to come. But it didn’t work that way.

“Are you still with me?” Muttered Scorpius, laughing.

“Yeah,” I laughed. “I was just…taking a trip down memory lane I suppose. Do you remember that Hogmanay when we threw the party at the flat?”

He smiled. “Yeah I do. Christ that was a while ago, eh? We were only what? Eighteen?”

“We were,” I agreed. “Do you ever wish you’d known then what was going to happen? The way everything would work out?”

Scorpius looked thoughtful. “No,” He decided. “I wouldn’t change one single thing about my life with you. It’s brought me here.”

I smiled. “That’s a nice answer.”

We soon rejoined the party, where Dom was still being absolutely showered with gifts. Myself and Scorpius were in the kitchen getting people drinks, when Al joined us.

“Guess what!” He said, grabbing us by the arm each.

“What?” I asked, frowning.

“I’ve bought a car!” He said, grinning in excitement.

“Seriously?” Demanded Scorpius, looking as excited as Albus.

“Yeah!” He grinned.

“Albus are you shitting me?” I asked. “What do you need a car for?”

Al shrugged. “They’re fast. And cool.” Scorpius nodded in agreement.

“Well are you going for lessons?” I asked.

“Teddy’s going to teach me,” He said. “He’s a great driver. I hope to have my license by the end of the month.”

“You are crazy,” I laughed. “By the way have you talked to your brother about this Beth situation?”

Albus looked suddenly serious. “He’s convinced he can talk her out of leaving.”

“I know!” I said. “How does he think he can manage it? Al he’s going to end up seriously hurt if Beth takes Emma, especially if he doesn’t have a backup plan. Why won’t he go for joint custody?”

Al shrugged. “I dunno. But we all know Beth isn’t one to change her mind on stuff like this; if she’s made the decision its because she’s thought about it for days on end.”

“Well I guess James has to prepare himself for the possibility that Emma might be going to Portugal whether he likes it or not.” Said Scorpius, sadly.

None of us said anything as the truth of those words hung in the air. For the first time in my life, I was scared for James Potter. 



*


A/N Reviews as always appreciated!

Chapter 25: Violet Hill
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N New chappie!  There's lots happening in  this chapter and the ones to follow, it's sort of a fast-paced, very busy road towards the finish-line now people :( But I'd say there's another ten chapters to go so never fear lots of fun still to come!!!!! Title inspired by the story's muse - the ever talented Coldplay. Enjoy!


*


“Are you aware that we have been back together for over four months?” Scorpius suddenly said.

“What?” I demanded. “Really?”

“Yeah,” He laughed. “Remember how it all happened? We shagged the night of Al’s leaving party and then Beth had Emma like two days later.”

“And Emma is eighteen weeks old,” I said. “Holy shit you’re right.”

“Time flies, Weasley,” He said, winking.

I grinned at him as Dom sat down at the table with us and poured herself some orange juice. Breakfast in this flat was rarely a quiet affair; Dom and I were always there of course, and then most of the time either Scorpius, or Lewis, or both sometimes, would join us.

I looked down as I felt a familiar soft, furry texture brushing against my bare feet, and picked up Charlie onto my lap, stroking behind his ears affectionately.

“So today’s the big day then,” Said Dom, bracingly.

“Yeah,” I said, as butterflies fluttered nervously in my stomach.

In the last two weeks, Beth had refused to speak to James about anything other than what time he would pick up and drop off Emma. Which meant that he’d had no opportunity whatsoever to persuade her to stay, as planned. James had been forced to resort to the last remaining option that he had so wanted to avoid; today was the custody hearing for James’ application for joint custody of Emma. My Mum had recommended all the most reputable lawyers in the business, and Harry and Ginny were forking out a fortune for the best.

“He’ll win,” Dom said surely. “He will.”

Scorpius sighed. “You have to prepare yourself for the alternative Dom. Beth might get her.”

I looked down at Charlie, sadly. It wasn’t fair, it really wasn’t. All James had done was his best, and now he was being forced to take Beth to court. Apart from anything else, it was saddening to know that my friendship with Beth was over, regardless of the outcome of the hearing.

“Are you nervous about standing?” Asked Dom, looking at me.

“Yes,” I admitted. “I’m scared that I’ll fuck up and he won’t get her and it will be my fault.”

“Just do your best,” Advised Scorpius. “And it’ll be enough.”

“Why did he have to put me forward?” I complained. “Anyone else would have been better; Albus, his Dad, one of you guys. I can’t tell them anything the rest of you couldn’t.”

“It’s just because you know them both so well, and you delivered Emma and it was you who sort of helped James at the start and stuff,” Said Scorp. “And James has nominated you to speak for him because he trusts you and he knows you believe he can do this.”

I nodded. “I do. I just hope it’s enough.”

*

When the three of us arrived at the Ministry, the rest of the family were already there waiting in the Atrium with James; Harry and Ginny, Mum and Dad, Lily and Albus, and Hugo. That was the limit, as we knew that only so many people could really go to the hearing and we didn’t want it to look like we were ganging up on Beth. Even though she deserved it.

I hugged James when I saw him and he gave me a nervous smile.

“How do you feel?” I asked him.

He shrugged. “Not too bad…just have to get on with it don’t we?”

“Yeah,” I said, as we filed into the elevator and Mum pressed for the correct level. We just arrived outside the venue for the hearing and already were being shuffled in by Ministry workers, glancing nervously at my Mum, who was of course their boss.

I sat down between Scorpius and Al, with James on Al’s other side. I noticed James’ legs shaking and I reached across Albus to pat his arm reassuringly.

“Who has Emma today?” I heard Mum ask Aunt Ginny, in the row behind us.

“Beth’s Dad,” Muttered Ginny.

James looked up and was about to say something, when the doors opened and in came Beth, Jack, and her Mum. James took a deep breath, staring at Beth angrily.

“Keep your head son,” Uncle Harry cautioned him quietly.  James nodded, and resumed with the shaky legs again as his lawyer, Johnny Prewitt arrived and slipped into the free seat behind him with a pile of papers and folders.

Finally, when everyone was seated, the doors opened and a stern-looking woman with cropped grey hair and sharp eyes entered the courtroom.

“Evelyn Locke,” Whispered Mum. “Or Madam Locke I should say. Even though she works for me.”

“What’s she like?” Asked Ginny, quietly. We all looked around to see Mum’s response.

“She’s fair,” Said Mum. “Firm but fair,” She glanced at James. “She should give you a chance to state your case.”

“Good morning,” Madam Locke said, from her raised seat at the front of the room which faced the rest of us. “We have gathered over the dispute between James Sirius Potter and Beth Hardy about the custodial rights of their daughter, Emma Hardy. This case has been raised by Mr Potter, who is seeking a joint custody agreement between himself and Miss Hardy.”

We all sat silently; there wasn’t a sound in the huge, high-ceilinged room. Madame Locke glanced around at everyone for a second, before continuing.

“I would firstly like to ask for Mr Potter’s solicitor, Mr Prewitt to come forward to ask his questions. Mr Prewitt?”

Johnny Prewitt stood and motioned to James. “I’ll firstly be questioning Mr Potter, Madam Locke.”

The two of them went up to the stand, James looking sick. I noticed Beth watching him with an uncomfortable expression on her face, and I was overwhelmed by an urge to cross the floor between us and attack her.

“James,” Said Johnny. “Cast your mind back to the evening of the 20th august last year, the night which resulted in Emma’s conception. You were out with Miss Hardy, correct?”

“Yeah,” Said James. “Beth was home from Portugal for a few weeks, and she had asked people to go out in London.”

“When you say people – can you be more specific? From what I know you weren’t exactly friends with Miss Hardy, were you?”

“No,” James admitted. “I only went for my brother, Albus. He was nervous about seeing Beth and asked if I would come.”

“And what can you tell me about the relationship between Albus and Beth?”

“They were together for a year or so when they were at school,” Said James. “It sounds pretty silly, but they actually were truly in love. And then Albus cheated on Beth, and they split. But they both still loved each other.”

“Right,” Said Johnny. “So you went with him as a sort of moral support. And obviously we all know what followed. Yourself and Miss Hardy consumed a considerable amount of alcohol and ended up having unprotected sex. Now what happened after?”

“We felt awful,” James said. “I just didn’t want Albus to find out. We agreed not to tell anyone, but my cousin Rose had guessed, so she knew too.”

“And when was the next time you saw Miss Hardy?”

“Two weeks later, when she came to tell me she was pregnant.” He said. “Obviously I was shocked, and worried about what Albus would say. Neither of us wanted to hurt him.”

“And what happened when Albus found out?” Prompted Johnny.

I frowned; why was he focusing so much on Albus? I glanced at Al and he seemed to be thinking along the same lines.

“He was furious,” James admitted. “It got really difficult between the three of us.”

“You and your brother were fighting; do you think Miss Hardy felt bad?”

“Yes,” Said James. “She felt really guilty that she was causing us to fight like that, as we’ve always been really close.”

“Mr Potter,” Said Johnny. “Do you think Miss Hardy is still in love with your brother?”

James looked directly at Beth. “I do.”

There was a low outburst of whispers among the onlookers, and I looked at Albus, who looked awkward and confused. Wow, this guy was good.

“Interesting,” Said Johnny. “Now as we all know, Miss Hardy proceeded to lie about a miscarriage, which left the entire Potter family very upset. James had just been starting to adjust to the idea of being a father, and then received this blow. James, can you tell me how you felt when you were told Miss Hardy had given birth to Emma?”

“Shocked,” Said James. “I couldn’t believe it; I just could not get my head round it.”

“But you’ve made a go of it,” Stated Johnny.

“Yes,” Said James. “Emma is my daughter, and although it’s not been easy, I’ve learned to be a good father to her. I love her more than anything, and my entire family has accepted her as one of their own almost instantly. She’s the best thing that ever happened to me.”

“And you seem to be doing well,” Said Johnny. “Did Miss Hardy ever express any plans after having Emma of returning to her work in Portugal?”

“Never,” Said James. “I took it for granted that she would be staying here now.”

“And when did she first tell you of these plans?”

“Three weeks ago,” He said. “The day after she introduced me to her boyfriend, Jack, who plans to go with them.”

“And what do you know of Jack?”

“Nothing,” Said James. “Only that she knew him in Portugal, and that they’ve been seeing each other for the last two months.”

“So when Emma was just eight weeks old, Miss Hardy embarked on a relationship with Jack,” Said Johnny. “And after introducing you to him, she tells you the following day that she, Jack and Emma are moving back to Portugal. How did you react?”

“It wasn’t a possibility.” Said James. “She cannot take Emma from me, I can’t even imagine it.”

“And what do you think about Jack?”

James frowned. “I don’t think it’s appropriate for basically a stranger to be living with my baby daughter, on the other side of Europe to be honest. I don’t trust his intentions and I don’t believe he will put Beth and Emma first.”

“Meanwhile Emma would probably be better suited living in Britain, and being cared for equally by her mother and father, as well as being close to her grandparents. Do you agree?”

“Absolutely,” Said James.

Johnny smiled up at Madam Locke. “I have no further questions.”

I grinned at James as he sat down, and he managed a small smile in return. It was going well so far, and it looked like Beth was thinking the same thing as she nervously approached the stand with her lawyer after a short fifteen minute break.

“Beth,” Said the lawyer who was called Maggie Townsend. “How has becoming a mother changed you?”

“It’s made me more mature,” Said Beth. “And I now make my decisions based on Emma’s needs, rather than my own. She’s my life.”

“So obviously you put a lot of thought into the decision to go to Portugal?”

“It’s all I’ve done,” Said Beth. “I’ve gone over and over it and I believe it’s the right thing to do. I can offer Emma a better life in Portugal, and she will have two of her grandparents close by as my parents have decided to come with us too.”

“And what about Mr Potter? Do you want him to see Emma?” Asked Maggie.

“Of course,” Said Beth. “He can come out, we’ll come back to see him. He’ll have her for birthdays and holidays. He’ll still be her Dad and he can come to visit as much as he wants.”

“Would you say Mr Potter is a good father?”

“He is,” Said Beth.

“A reliable father?” Asked Maggie, raising her eyebrows.

Beth sighed. “James is great with Emma…but I wouldn’t call him reliable. His lifestyle isn’t well suited to parenthood.”

“How so?”

“Well he’s a Quidditch player, so he travels all the time and has a very hectic schedule. And then when he’s not working, he has a wild social life. He goes out all the time and always ends up bringing girls back to his flat and stuff. Plus he shares a flat with his cousin, who is the same age and leads a similar lifestyle.”

“So would you be concerned if Emma was left in his care for three days a week?”

“Not concerned,” Said Beth. “But I know he would have to make a lot of changes for it to work.”

“Yes,” Said Maggie. “Whereas with you in Portugal, she would actually have stability. Living in one house, going to one school, one set of friends. Whereas joint custody results in a lot of uprooting for a child, don’t you think?”

“Yes,” Said Beth. “She will have stability and a better life in Portugal.”

Maggie nodded. “Now obviously you were home for a few weeks when Emma was conceived. Did you plan to return to Portugal?”

“Yes, I was always going home. Even when I was pregnant, I planned to eventually go back.”

“You say ‘home’ – would you class Portugal as your home then?”

“Yeah,” She said. “I grew up here in Britain, but I’ve been based in Portugal for several years now. It’s home for me.”

“Bullshit Beth!” Albus suddenly shouted.

“Excuse me?” Barked Madam Locke. “Please control yourself or leave my courtroom young man.”

Ginny put her hand on Al’s shoulder and I looked at him meaningfully. He scowled but fell silent.

“And it ultimately will be Emma’s home,” Said Maggie, ignoring Al. “I think we can all tell from what Miss Hardy has told us that Emma belongs with her, and that to leave her in the care of Mr Potter would be presently unwise. No further questions.”

“Holy shit,” Scorpius said five minutes later, as we all sat in the recess room. “That was intense.”

“What if he loses?” I whispered.

“We just have to hope for the best,” Said Scorpius, shrugging. “That’s all we can do.”

An hour later, we returned and it was time for me to go. I was shitting myself, knowing that what I said could influence whether James would lose Emma. I would be questioned by Johnny and then Beth’s Mum would stand for Beth. And then they would retire to decide.

“Miss Weasley, you are Mr Potter’s cousin, correct?” He asked me, smiling.

“Yes,” I said.

“And how long have you known Miss Hardy?”

“Nearly twelve years,” I answered.

“Are you close with Miss Hardy?” He asked me.

“Well I was,” I said. “Beth was one of my best friends at Hogwarts, but we’ve lost touch in recent years, obviously she was in Portugal.”

“So would you say you know them both fairly well?”

“Definitely.”

“Miss Weasley you and Mr Potter are very close. How has taken to fatherhood?”

“It’s been a struggle, but he has become a great Dad. We’re all very proud of him and it’s clear to see how much he loves her. James loves her to pieces.”

“Would you say he’s made sacrifices?”

“Absolutely,” I said. “He has an agreement with his Quidditch team now so he only works set days; he spends more time with his family. He rarely goes out and hasn’t been romantically involved with anyone since Emma was born. Unlike Beth.”

“But you say it’s been a struggle?”

“Well yes,” I said. “Because he wasn’t in the slightest bit prepared. He didn’t know Emma would be arriving, and he’s had to adjust overnight. Had he known, if he’d had nine months to prepare like Beth did it would be easier, but she told him she lost the baby.”

“And do you think that reflects badly on Miss Hardy?” Said Johnny, calmly.

“I suppose I do,” I said. “I think it shows that Beth doesn’t always make the right choices, and so it’s not a great idea to trust her judgement on uprooting Emma from her home and her family to Portugal.”

“I quite agree,” Said Johnny. “And what did you think of all these bad decisions Miss Hardy has made?”

“I’ve been shocked,” I admitted. “Beth has always been very responsible and mature, and I’m sure it’s been very difficult for her. But that’s no excuse and it doesn’t justify taking Emma away from her father.”

“And what do you think would be a more suitable arrangement for Emma?”

“I think she should live in Britain.” I said. “She needs Beth, there’s no denying that, and I think she should live with Beth. But I think James should have set days where Emma comes to stay at his.”

“Thank you Miss Weasley, that’s everything.”

“Thanks,” I muttered, stepping down. I walked back to the seats, praying I’d said all the right things. I didn’t know how I’d sounded; did I paint James in a good light?

My heart was beating rapidly as Beth’s Mum answered Maggie’s carefully planned questions. She gushed about how Beth had come through everything and was a better person for it - basically painting her as a saint instead of a liar. 

And it got worse; Beth had clearly held back and refrained from criticising James too much before, but her Mum seemed perfectly happy to completely slate him. She called him childish, unreliable, and not fit to look after Emma. It was painful to watch, and Ginny and Harry had never looked more furious.

“Myself and the Wizengamot will retire to make a decision,” Said Madam Locke in a monotonous voice. “Please return in thirty minutes.”

James was convinced he had lost as we sat waiting in the same small room as before. Beth's Mum had ruined any chances he had, and we all felt the fear and worry captivating the room.

We were all pretty quiet, and suddenly James stood up as Beth, Jack and her Mum came in to sit opposite us.

“Beth,” He said, desperately.

“What James?” She asked, shrugging.

“We don’t have to do this. We can get them to call it all off.” He told her. “Please.”

“Is this you feeling guilty about the way you slated me in there James?” She asked. “Well save it; if you get joint custody then you’ve won haven’t you? Isn’t that enough?”

“Just don’t take her!” He said. “Keep her here and we can forget it all! Come on Beth, think about Emma.”

I looked at the ground, feeling intrusive. There was something devastating about the desperation in his voice as he pleaded for his daughter.

“That’s all I’ve done!” She shouted, standing too. “All I do is think of Emma!”

“I know,” He said. “And I know why you’re taking her to Portugal with him; it’s because you scared, isn’t it?”

“What?” She whispered.

“You’re scared of being alone and trying to raise Emma on your own and not being able to give her enough.” James walked forward and put his arm on her shoulder. “But you’re not alone Beth.”

“James,” She whispered again, shakily.

“I can’t forgive you for what you’ve done,” He said. “But if you’re just doing this because you want a father for Emma and a nice house and money, I can give you all of that. Don’t settle for Jack and Portugal because it’s convenient.”

“It’s not convenient,” She said, shaking her head. “That’s not it James, I don’t…”

“It is,” He said. “And think about her for a second. We might have fought like cat and dog for the last four months and I know this all started because of a drunken mistake, but she’s our Emma. She’s ours, Beth. And I will make sure you and her have everything you could ever want, you don’t need anyone else to do that because I’m here and I’m her Dad. Don’t take her from me Beth.”

Beth stared at him tearfully for what felt like forever and the silence was deafening as James awaited her response…

*

Four weeks later everything had, by and large, gone back to normal. Beth didn’t go to Portugal, but Jack did. She and him split up soon after he realised she was only with him for security, and that there was a pretty good chance she was still mad about Albus. And James? James got everything he’d been fighting for – Emma. 

We did actually return for the verdict on the custody hearing, although they had decided to sort it themselves regardless of the outcome. Beth was offically granted full-custody of Emma, but only on the basis that she kept Emma in Britain. James was to have access to Emma at least two days a week, as well as joint-custody at Christmas and on her birthdays. Madam Locke had also advised that if James should feel the need to apply for joint or full custody in the future, he should absolutely do so, providing his schedule had slowed down a bit. 

They had a pretty solid arrangement these days; Emma lived with Beth at her parents’ house officially, but James took her on a Wednesday night and Sunday during the day. This suited them both, as James often worked Saturdays, whereas Beth did not and wanted to spend them with Emma. Beth had officially returned to work at the Ministry.

And so with all the drama seemingly over with for the time-being, I could focus on being happy with Scorpius. Of course the issues with my Dad hadn’t yet been solved, and I was beginning to doubt they ever would be. But I was planning my next attempt to fix things, and I was hoping it would work.

Meanwhile, my cousin was obsessed with driving. Albus had passed his test a few days ago, and his car was his favourite thing in the world at the moment. He had even driven it into London the past few days, which was ridiculous considering the time it took him to park the shiny convertible. We had all been for a drive with him, and Frankie and I had fun joking about how he was clearly compensating for something with his flashy car.

“You know something?” I said to Dom as I set the dishes to start washing themselves and went to get the Hoover. “I really hate cleaning, and I’m a witch. How do Muggles actually cope?”

She raised her eyebrows at me. “Your Mum is a witch and she washes dishes by hand.”

“She thinks they are cleaner that way,” I said defensively. “And anyway my Mum’s a weirdo!”

“Rose!” Yelled Scorpius from the bedroom. “Please can I go?”

“Are you done?” I called back.

“No!”

“Then no you can’t go Scorpius!” I replied, laughing with Dominique. We had set Scorpius to making the beds and tidying our rooms. Cleaning was something that literally happened once every three weeks at this flat, so there was always lots more than anyone could be bothered doing. Apart from my Nana Molly; she loved it.

“Okay it’s done,” He said, coming in to the kitchen. “It’s not even my fucking bed!”

“Well you sleep in it plenty!” Chastised Dom. “Don’t be so lazy Malfoy. Anyway it can’t have taken long to fix mine, it’s not like anyone else sleeps in it but me…” She said, scowling.

I gave her a sympathetic look. Lewis, who she had been crazy about just last week, had turned out to be a bad boy. She had walked in on him with another girl one night and that was it. Goodbye Lewis.

“You’re well shot of him,” Said Scorpius. “He was an arsehole.”

“Funny,” Said Dom. “That’s what everyone said when I split from you!”

“You crack me up,” He said dryly, as I laughed.

“That’ll be Al,” Said Scorpius, going to answer the door. “Thank God; I need to get out of here.”

“Hey,” I frowned. He grinned and I smiled back as he let in my cousin.

“Ready Scorp?” Asked Albus, twirling his car keys in his hand.

“Where are you two even going?” Dom asked, critically.

“Cruising,” Said Albus, as if he was the coolest person in the world.

“Wow,” I said, sarcastically. “Scorp do you think you guys might pull in somewhere and get lucky?”

“Goodbye!” He said loudly, and the pair of them dissaparated.

Dominique and I laughed and I put my wand down on the unit. “Okay, that’s enough. I’m not doing anymore! Let’s go out!”

“Thank Christ for that,” She said, grinning. “I don’t think I could take anymore Rose. Where do you want to go?”

“I don’t know?” I shrugged. “Out for drinks?”

“Yeah!” She said. “I’ll go get ready and put Charlie in my room.”

Charlie had to be shut in one room when we left him alone, otherwise hit tried to eat everything, including the sofa. Half an hour later, we were tottering along a London high street in our heels, looking for a nice bar.

It was great going out with Dominique; we always had such a laugh, and after an hour we were ecstatic when Megan showed up to join us, looking less like a married Mum of one and more like a supermodel. It made me feel so young and happy, being out with the girls. Plus with Megan here it meant Dom didn’t have to feel guilty about responding to the blokes who chatted her up.

“I love coming out with you two!” Said Megan, sipping her drink. “We need to do it more often.”

“I know,” I agreed. “It was just totally spur of the moment tonight though; we got bored of the cleaning.”

“I know the feeling,” She said, as we watched Dom flicking her hair while the guy at the bar bought her another drink. She smiled at me. “I’m so glad you’re still all loved up Rose!”

“Oh,” I laughed. “Well me too. It’s really working this time, so it’s good.”

“You two deserve it,” She said. “I’m sorry I’m not around more though…I’m probably a pretty poor best friend these days.”

“Don’t be stupid!” I said.

“No it’s true though, we don’t see each other that much,” She said, sadly. “It’s a good thing you have Dom for a best friend.”

“Shut it, Bryce hyphen Finnegan!” I joked. “Dominique is my cousin, and my roommate and my amazing friend. But you are my best friend, and you always will be.”

“I suppose,” She smiled.

“And speaking of which,” I said, the familiar panic which had struck me yesterday returning. “I could really use a best friend heart-to-heart at the moment…”

She sat up a little straighter. “What’s wrong?”

Megan never found out what was wrong, as at that exact moment, the doors of the bar burst open and my Mum came rushing in.

“Mum?” I half laughed. “What are you doing here?”

I soon as I got a good look at her, I knew it wasn’t good. “There’s been an accident!” She said breathlessly.

“What?” I cried. “Who? Dad? Hugo?”

And then it hit me. If Dad or Hugo had been in an accident, she would already be at St Mungo’s, not running about London looking for me. She would have sent someone else. But there were only a few people in my life whose accident could cause my Mum to look at me like this. And two of them were already in this bar. Which meant –?

“Scorpius” I choked.

She nodded, tearfully. “And Albus. They were in a car crash…Rose, it’s bad.”

*




A/N Let me know!!!

Chapter 26: Recovery
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Okay I have to confess there is a serious filler ahead!!! However, there is a massive reveal at the end and I can't wait to hear your reactions!


 

*


“Do you think he can hear us?” Whispered Astoria shakily.

I closed my eyes and leaned my head against the edge of the clean, white mattress, wishing he would just waken up and open his eyes and take me away from this horrible moment.

But he didn’t.

“I think he might be able to,” Replied Draco, in a quiet voice. He and Astoria were sitting at his other side, holding hands. “Why don’t you try talking to him?”

She wiped the tears from her eyes and nodded shakily.

“Scorpius,” She whispered. “Scorpius, son, if you can hear us, then we’re all here for you; Dad, Me, and Rose. So if you can just open your eyes and let us know you’re okay…” She trailed off, burying her head in Draco’s chest.

I took a deep breath and looked at him. His face was motionless, his blonde hair swept away from his forehead, where there was a thick, white bandage wrapped across his deep, heavily bleeding head injury.

My Healer mind was only half working, I couldn’t exactly think straight, but I knew that the sling on his right arm was there because we couldn’t heal it for him while he was unconscious. Same as we couldn’t heal his four cracked ribs.

I grabbed the edge of the mattress and took another deep breath as the hysteria threatened took take over me again. That wouldn’t help anyone.

“I’m going to go and get a drink of water,” I said quietly to them, getting up.

They both nodded, not taking their eyes from their son’s face. I stroked his head softly, before looking back at them. “If he wakes up or…”

“We’ll find you straight away,” Said Draco firmly.

I nodded gratefully, and left the room. I walked the short distance along the corridor to where my Mum, Dad, Hugo, Dom, James, and Lily were waiting. They all stood up when I came into view. James came straight over to me.

“Rose, how is he?” He asked, seriously, extending his arms to me.

I looked up at my cousin and shook my head tearfully. He enveloped his arms around me and I started to cry against his chest, feeling the terror pulling me under again, and I fought to stay sane. I barely registered as another pair of arms went around my shoulders, and the familiar voice of Dominique whispered words of comfort and reassurance in my ear.

But when I was passed to one set of arms, I knew straight away; it was only when I was being hugged by this person, that I knew it was exactly what I needed.

My Dad.

I cried against my Dad’s shirt as he supported all my weight and stroked my hair just like a Dad was supposed to.

“I’m sorry Dad,” I cried.

“What for?” He asked, shaking his head.

“Because we were fighting.” I whispered. “And you don’t even like Scorpius and this is just such a mess!”

Dad looked me in the eyes. “Rose, I may not be mad about Scorpius, but I’m the one who should be apologising. When I see you like this…well it’s obvious isn’t it? You and him are clearly supposed to be with each other. And he will be absolutely fine, I’m sure of it.”

I nodded tearfully. “Thanks,” I said quietly, hugging him again for several minutes.

“What about Albus?” I finally said when I had controlled the sobs.

“He’s okay,” Said Lily. “Mum, Dad and Frankie are with him now.”

“Can I see him?” I asked.

Mum nodded. “I’ll go and let them know.”

She returned a couple of minutes later with Harry and Ginny, and a shaky looking Frankie. Ginny hugged me softly before gesturing towards Al’s room, and I stepped in quietly.

Albus was a far cry from Scorpius. He was sitting up in the bed, looking a little dizzy but otherwise coherent. His face was pretty messed up, with a large gash down the side, but other than that he looked okay. I knew from what I’d been told when they were brought in that he had a fractured leg, but Scorpius had taken the full impact of the crash.

“Rose,” He croaked, as I walked in.

“Are you alright?” I asked him, standing beside his bed.

“Yeah I’m okay,” He nodded. “Just a little messed up. How’s Scorp?”

“He hasn’t woken up yet,” I said shakily. “He has a trauma to his head and we don’t know the effects yet…we have to wait for him to wake up.”

Albus put his head in his hands and I stayed still, waiting.

“What happened, Al?” I finally demanded.

He shook his head sadly. “The other car…it just came out of nowhere! I didn’t see it one minute there was nothing and the next it was just there! But she was at fault, I had right of way!”

My eyes narrowed. “Were you speeding?”

Al’s eyes clouded in guilt, and I almost gagged.

“Rose I-”

“You stupid, stupid boy!” I cried. “What were you thinking, you idiot?”

“I’m sorry!” He exclaimed. “We were having a laugh, that’s it we were just messing about and-”

“Messing about with your lives!” I shouted. “What if he doesn’t wake up Al? Or what if he does and he’s brain damaged? What the hell will we do?”

It was only now I realised I was crying; and so was Albus.

“It wasn’t my fault,” He said again.

“I don’t care!” I cried. “You should have been more careful, you could have avoided this! You and that bloody car Albus!”

He had the decency to look down and say nothing. I was shaking from head to foot, not just with worry for Scorpius; I was also terrified that I might have lost Albus. I had been just as scared for him as I was for Scorpius.

“Buying cars!” I shouted. “Going travelling; leaving your life, your job, your family for four months! It’s about time you grew up and thought about someone other than yourself!”

“I’m sorry,” He whispered.

I shrugged. “Sorry’s not good enough. I promise you Albus, if Scorpius doesn’t wake up, I will never, ever forgive you.”

*

Draco and Astoria had left me alone with Scorpius for a while, and I was trying Astoria’s idea; I was talking to him.

“Okay I’ll make you a deal,” I said, holding his hand. “If you pull through and recover, I will do anything you want; get married, move in, get a house…anything!”

I sighed. “This is not fair at all,” I said. “As far as I’m aware you were in any near-death experiences were you were in bloody Wales. And we’re doing so well together Scorp…” I said, tears welling up again. “Really well. And we’ve got this second chance – what would I do without you now? And I really need to talk to you about something Scorpius! And my Dad has finally accepted you now, that’s big news! Come on you need to wake up I have so much I need to tell you…”

“I’m sorry I nearly married Mark,” I cried. “I’m sorry I hurt you and rejected you, I’ll never hurt you again just wake up, for me Scorpius…”  

And for hours, that’s all there was. Me having this heartbreaking one-way conversation with myself, trying to get some sort of reaction out of him. This was when magical medicine was a bit of a let-down; there was so much we could do, but in this case, when there was pressure pushing down on his brain and he was unconscious, all we could do was wait for him to wake up. Because anything else could cause serious, lasting damage.

I spent the following thirteen hours at St Mungo’s, by his side. Various family members came and went, along with my colleagues who popped in to wish Scorpius the best. Healer Greene had been fantastic, allowing me to take the rest of the week off work to concentrate on him. Meanwhile, Draco and Astoria kept me company by his bedside, waiting and hoping. And still there was nothing.

On the Monday morning, two days after the crash, Dominique managed to convince me to come home, get a shower and get some sleep. My sleep was restless and troubled, I tossed and turned non-stop, and my dreams were always the same; a cloudy, fading image of Scorpius’ face.

I returned with Dom that afternoon, and had been getting caught up with his Healer; the very experienced Healer Digby, when Uncle Harry and Albus popped in to see how we were doing. Healer Digby and Dom left us and I gave Harry a hug, before turning back to Scorpius. I barely acknowledged Al was there; I was still mad at him for the accident and couldn’t get over it.

“How’s he doing?” Asked Harry, who was standing behind my chair.

“Just the same,” Said Astoria, who looked even worse than I felt. “How are you doing now Albus?”

I looked over at Albus, who was furthest away from the hospital bed. His eyes were locked on Scorpius’ blank face, and he looked deathly pale.

“He’s fine,” Said Harry. “Just worried about Scorpius…”

“Oh well that’s good of him,” Said Draco coldly, from the foot of the bed. I whipped around at the same time as Astoria and Harry.

“Excuse me?” Asked Harry in shock.

“You heard Potter,” He seethed. “If it wasn’t for your idiot of a child my son wouldn’t be lying here half-dead!”

“Draco!” Cried Astoria.

“How dare you!” Said Harry loudly. “Don’t go accusing my son of-”

“Why Dad?” Interrupted Al. “He’s right…”

“He is not right,” Said Harry firmly. “It was an accident and you are most certainly not stupid! In case you’ve forgotten Malfoy the other driver has been charged at fault!”

“That’s regardless,” Muttered Draco. “If Scorpius hadn’t been in that car none of this should have happened.”

“I will not let you blame my son!” Exclaimed Harry.

I tried to block them out and look back at Scorpius, but they were getting louder and louder. Comments were now being thrown about by Draco about how Albus was nothing but a bad influence on Scorpius.

“Them being friends was never a good idea!” Shouted Draco. “What kind of supposed best friend gets his mate put in hospital in a coma?”

It wasn’t Al’s fault…”

I whipped back around to Scorpius, and the air was knocked out from me as I saw his eyes slowly open and his brow furrow. “It wasn’t his fault,” He croaked again.

“Scorpius!” I cried, putting my head on his chest as the tears ran down my face. I felt his hand stroke my hair as I tried to pull myself together. I was a Healer, I should be checking to see if he was okay, testing his responses. But all I could do was breathe in and out, and thank God that he was okay.

“I’ll get the Healer,” Muttered Harry, ducking out of the room.

“Are you okay Scorpius?” Whispered Astoria, stroking his forehead.

“I’m okay,” He croaked, as I lifted my head to look at him. “My head hurts. What happened?”

“You and Albus were in a car crash,” Said Astoria quietly. “You had a bad head injury, plus a couple of cracked ribs and a broken arm, but you should be just fine.”

“Al?” He muttered.

“I’m here mate,” He said, walking nearer. “And I’m okay. I’m so sorry…”

“It wasn’t your fault,” He said for the third time. “That stupid fucking Corsa came out of nowhere.”

I let out a relieved, hysterical laugh and he finally looked at me.

“Are you okay?” He asked me.

“Me?” I replied, shaking my head. “I’m not important here. As long as you’re okay, Scorpius, that’s what matters.”

“I love you,” He muttered, his eyes closing again. “I’m tired…”

“Rest,” I said, stroking his hair. “And I love you too.”

*

“I’m struggling to place a few things,” Said Scorpius three days later as I sat beside him in his bed at his parents’ house, feeding him grapes.

“Like what?” I asked, swallowing a grape myself.

“I dunno,” He muttered, frowning. “I just can’t remember some stuff. Like stuff from a long time ago…Hogwarts and stuff.”

“Well you had a traumatic head injury Scorp,” I said carefully. “Some stuff will be missing for a few days, but there’s not going to be any lasting damage. In the meantime I can fill you in!”

“On everything?” He asked, grinning.

“Of course,” I said. “What have you forgotten?”

“I’ve forgotten our first night together,” He said. “But I really don’t think you telling me would do it justice…you better demonstrate.”

“Oh my God!” I laughed. “Are you using your accident as leverage for sex, you lunatic?”

“As guy has to try,” He shrugged, wincing in pain. “But I really don’t know if I’m up to it.”

“No I don’t either!” I laughed. “Just you concentrate on getting better, Casanova. And don’t underestimate my story-telling skills,” I said. “I can be quite imaginative you know, you might be surprised…”

By the end of the week, Scorpius was just about back to normal, up and walking around without any pain, and all his “memories” had come back in full (though I had come to suspect he was milking it a bit for the dirty talk) so I was finally able to go home.

I know he didn’t specifically need me to stay with him for the full five days that he was on bed-rest and taking potions all day, Astoria would have done more than a good enough job, but I wanted to. And I knew he would have done the same for me.

It was however quite good to get home to my own bed. I was exhausted, the last week had been more emotionally draining than I could ever have imagined, but before I could curl up and catch up on some much needed sleep, I had to do something very important.

“I’m sorry,” I told Albus seriously, as we walked in the Potters’ massive gardens, as the sun set low above the surrounding scenery.

“It doesn’t matter,” He said. “You were right Rose…”

“No I wasn’t!” I insisted. “I didn’t mean it and I was out of line. I was just so worried about Scorpius; I didn’t know what would happen to him!”

“I know that!” He said. “And like I say I don’t blame you.”

“I just don’t want you thinking I have any problem with you Al. You’re my cousin and one of my best friends. I’m sorry if I hurt your feelings okay?”

“Okay,” He said, hugging me closely. “It’s in the past. Scorp is fine and that’s all that matters.”

By the time it came round to a week to the evening of the crash, there was nothing that could make me happier than curling up on the sofa to watch a film with Dom. It gave me the chance to catch up on what was going on with her while I was nursing Scorpius back to health, and I finally confided in her about the pressing issue that had been in the back of mind before the accident last week.

Her reaction was as I expected, and half an hour later the pair of us were pacing up and down the living room of the flat, going over it again and again.

Because there was no way, simply no way. And yet here it was now, the proof, right in front of my eyes. But there was just no way. No way at all. Because I was the last person in the world that would end up here.

And yet there was absolutely no denying it anymore. I was pregnant.

*

 
 


Chapter 27: In My Place
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Enjoy!

*



It’s not that bad. It’s not that bad, it’s not that bad, it’s not that bad.

Fuck. I was absolutely screwed. Completely and utterly fucked. Oh my God.

“This doesn’t have to be a bad thing,” Whispered Dom.

I sighed, and she stroked a strand of my hair out of my eyes. It was three in the morning, and the pair of us were lying on my bed, having eaten three tubs of ice cream, and gone through four boxes of tissues. I now felt sick, tired, and terrified – always the best combination.

“You know, I actually think Scorpius would be a great Dad,” She said conversationally. “You know, once he got into it.”

“He would be,” I agreed quietly. “It’s not him I’m worried about…”

“Don’t say that,” She said. “You would, no will be a fantastic Mum!”

I cringed at the word Mum and rolled over onto the pillow. Over and over I kept asking myself how I could have let this happen; and yet I knew, of course I did.

It had to have happened the night we had all gone out clubbing; it was during the no sex ban and I ended up getting really drunk and upset about fighting with my Dad. And Scorpius had said all the right things and made everything better for a minute. And I had been so consumed by him, and by my feelings for him, that I hadn’t taken the precautions I’d thought I would never forget. But clearly I had.

I ate another spoonful of ice-cream, staring up at the ceiling thoughtfully. Outside, through my open window I heard the excited shouts of people out having fun, and it made me want to cry. Was it selfish for me to still want all that? To want to be young and enjoy going out and not having any responsibilities? It didn’t seem like that much to ask.

“Well you have to tell Scorpius, regardless,” Dom pointed out.

“Of course,” I said. “But I think I’ll tell Megan first. I need you guys to calm me down enough to be able to tell him.”

“Don’t worry,” She said, patting me on the head like a child.

“I’m not worried, Dominique,” I whispered. “I’m scared.”

“Well you don’t have to be!” She said. “You’ve seen yourself how having a baby can be the making of some people. Look at Megan!”

“Yeah and we’ve also seen how difficult it was for her Dom,” I said, tears running down my cheeks. “Steven just pissed off because it wasn’t his problem and he wasn’t ready to be a Dad…”

“Scorpius is not going to do that Rose,” She said firmly. “He loves you.”

“Steven loved Megan back then,” I reminded her. “But he was scared.”

“Okay you know what Rose?” She said, sitting up. “I won’t lie to you. Maybe Scorpius will freak out. Maybe he’ll walk away,” She shrugged. “In which case you do it without him. It’s not like you’ll be alone! You have your parents, and Hugo, and Megan and James and Al…and you have me! Do you think I’d let you go through this alone?”

“No,” I admitted, laughing shakily. “I just didn’t want to have to be in this position at all. I wanted to be married and older and ready before I had a baby!”

“It doesn’t always work out that way.” She said. “And okay you’re 22, you’re young. But you could be a lot younger. You could be 16 like Megan was…now that would be even harder.”

“Babies having babies,” I said, half smiling. “That’s true.”

She scooted closer to me and put her arm around me. “Tell him. He’ll probably be fine with it. Just don’t worry – it’s not good for the baby.”

I rolled my eyes at her. “If you say that to me again I will murder you, Dominique.”

*

Megan’s reaction was in many ways exactly what you would expect from her, but I was really hoping for a little bit more discretion considering the three of us were sitting in a crowded Muggle restaurant eating lunch.

“Oh my GOD!” She shouted. Then followed a high-pitched scream, which I’m pretty sure deafened me in at least one ear. “Rose you’re PREGNANT?!”

“Megan,” Muttered Dom. “I think there’s a wizard in Australia who didn’t quite catch that.” 

“I’m sorry!” She exclaimed, tears brimming at her brown eyes. “But I just can’t believe this!”

“Yeah, you and me both,” I said, quietly.

“But Rose this could be amazing!” She said, lowering her tone now and thankfully returning to the crazy best friend who I needed again.

“I know,” I admitted. “But it’s a big shock, you know? It’s not like I planned it…”

“I didn’t plan Allie,” She reminded me. “And I know how you feel right now. You feel like this is the biggest thing that’s ever happened to you, and you feel guilty because you don’t want the baby, and you feel like nobody in the world understands what you’re going through right now. But Rosie,” She said, taking my hand. “The truth is that’s what everyone thinks.”

I hastily wiped another tear away, and was overwhelmed by gratitude for my two best friends. Maybe I could do this, if I had them. All I needed now to convince me that, shocked though I may be, if Scorpius was okay with this I might just manage. In fact maybe I would do more than manage; maybe I could be a good Mum. But if he wasn’t…

“Personally I’m excited!” Said Megan. “I mean I know it wasn’t planned but just think! Another little baby…Allie will be beside herself with excitement.”

“Oh just think a little baby, half Rose, half Scorpius!” Said Dom, excitedly, while I teetered on the edge of hyperventilation. “I wonder who it will look like!”

“So how far along are you?” Asked Megan.

I took a deep breath. “Like two months? Fuck two months!”

“Well you can’t be anymore because you’re not showing at all.” She said observantly. “So you’ll be due around April?”

“I guess,” I said, shrugging.

“A spring baby,” Said Dom, smiling. “I wonder what it’ll be…”

“What would you like?” Megan probed. “Do you think you’ll find out?”

“I can’t do this,” I said, getting up and grabbing my bag.

“Rose!” Said Dom, looking shocked.

“No I just need to tell Scorpius,” I told them, apologetically. “I can’t talk about all of this until he knows. Thank you guys,” I said, making my way to the door. “I’ll talk to you both later.”

My need to tell Scorpius had in the past few minutes become more of a physical necessity, like breathing. I couldn’t sit and listen to Dom and Megan speculate on whether it was a boy or a girl until I had talked to Scorpius.

He was on his day off, like me, and at home as far as I knew. I was supposed to be staying at his tonight anyway. The whole situation could have made me laugh if it wasn’t so terrifying; here we were, with a baby on the way, and we didn’t even live together.

I found a quiet, secluded spot to disapparate, and a half-second later I found myself on the Malfoys’ familiar doorstep. I knocked twice and he answered a few seconds later, his hair ruffled and a chopping knife in his hand. I smiled as he kissed me before letting me in.

“I thought you were having lunch with the girls today,” He said, as I followed him into the kitchen. It was just us, his parents were both at work, and the house felt a lot more comfortable and friendly knowing it was just Scorpius and me.

“I did,” I said, sitting up on the worktop where he stood slicing cheese for his sandwich. “But I had to talk to you.”

“Okay shoot,” He said, leaning over to kiss me again.

I sighed and he seemed to notice my subdued mood. “Is everything okay?” He asked.

“I guess it depends on what you would class as okay…” I said, half-smiling.

“Okay Weasley, enough with your crazy riddles just spit it out!” He laughed, handing me a slice of tomato. I chewed it slowly, carefully selecting the words before saying them.

“Are you okay?” I said, stalling. “Like are you feeling okay and everything after the accident?”

“Fit as a fiddle!” He said, grinning. “Honestly, it really wasn’t that bad. The cracked ribs are still a bit sore, but they healed them nicely for me. I’m fine.”

“Good,” I said, my breath quickening. This was even harder than I’d imagined. “Listen Scorpius…”

“Scorpius?” He laughed. “You rarely call me Scorpius, this must be important.”

“It is,” I admitted. “I need to tell you something.”

“Oh shit it’s my hair, isn’t it?” He said, nodding to himself. “I knew it. I got it done yesterday and I know it’s a mess…I don’t know what the idiot who cut it was thinking, it’s this side here, see it?” He said, turning his head slightly.

He sighed. “Do you think you would be able to sort it for me?”

“Will you shut up about your bloody hair!” I exclaimed. “That’s not what I’m talking about here!”

He finally fell silent, and the floor was mine.

“I…I’m pregnant Scorpius.” I whispered.

His expression was so stunned it was almost funny. Almost. He was absolutely motionless, a stone statue, his mouth half-open. I wondered if that was what I’d looked like when I first realised.

“Scorpius?” I asked tentatively, when two full minutes had passed and he still hadn’t moved or made a sound. Finally he blinked, and then came alive again.

“Right,” He said in a low voice. “Shit.”

I nodded silently, my eyes wide and fearful.

“How long have you known?” He asked, raising his eyebrows.

I frowned. That wasn’t exactly the first thing I expected him to say. “I thought I might be…for a couple of days before the accident. But I just took the test the night before last with Dom.”

“Dom?” He repeated loudly. “Who else knows?”

“Just her and Megan.” I said, frowning. “Why? What does it matter?”

He laughed sarcastically. “What does it matter? It doesn’t matter I suppose. I don’t know why I’m surprised, of course Megan and Dominique would find out about my unborn child before me…”

“Scorpius,” I whispered.

“You know sometimes I feel like I’m just the backup, like they’re the ones you’re really in a relationship with. Are you ever going to put me first?”

“Okay,” I said, jumping down. “One that is ridiculous and two I can’t believe that is your reaction to this! Is there really nothing else more pressing than who I told first?”

“Well why didn’t you tell me sooner? From what you’re saying you’ve known you might be pregnant for two weeks!”

“Well I wasn’t sure and I was scared and then you ended up in hospital and nearly died so I’m sorry if it wasn’t the first thing on my mind Scorpius!” I shouted.

“Whatever,” He said, pacing around the kitchen.

“Don’t say that to me!” I said, pulling him back to me. “I’m pregnant…” I said, my tone softening. “We’re having a baby! Can’t you just tell me what you think about that?”

“I think you should have told me before now. That’s what I think Rose.”

“Right,” I said, turning to go. “Well that’s good to know.”

I slammed the door on my way out, my entire body shaking and tears welling up in my eyes once more as I pulled out my wand. I was almost at the line where the enchantments broke and you could apparate, when I heard him shout my name.

I sighed and turned around. He was running after me.

“Rose!” He yelled again, “I’m sorry!” He said, catching up with me. “I was in shock.”

“You were a heartless bastard, actually.” I said, though the insult was less than impressive since I was crying.

He shook his head, opening his arms and pulling me against his chest. I wrapped my arms around his waist as he enveloped me in his. Some of my blind panic subsided a little, and I realised I had been counting on this.

“What I should have said…” He told me as we sat in the kitchen, each holding a cup of tea twenty minutes later. “Is that it’s a big surprise. And I’m shit scared. But okay, we’ll deal with it.”

“That probably would have been a better response,” I joked, half-smiling.

“How many months?” He whispered.

“I don’t know exactly,” I replied quietly. “About two, I’d guess. But we need to go and see a Healer, we need to make sure everything is okay.”                                                                                                                      
“Al?” He suggested.

“Okay,” I said. “Shit Scorpius, we have to tell everyone.”

“You need to stop swearing,” He said. “We both do. We can’t swear in front of a baby.”

“True,” I laughed. “And we need to sort so much stuff out…you live with your parents and I live in a messy flat with my one-night stand loving cousin. That’s not exactly a good start.”

“So we need to get a place.” He agreed.

“We’ll have to save up,” I said, worried. “I mean we can’t just get any old cheap place. A baby needs a good home.”

“I mean you could move in here…” He said, shrugging.

“I could,” I said. “But my Dad’s accepted me going out with you I don’t think he could cope with me living with Draco Malfoy.”

“Right well we’ll sort that out.” He said. “I mean we’re okay for a few months anyway. Now,” He said, standing up. “Wait there.”

“Okay…” I laughed as he dashed upstairs. I sat there, my mind buzzing with everything we had to discuss, and he finally returned after about ten minutes.

“You took your time,” I said, as he walked, not back to his seat, but in front of me.

And then he got down on one knee. Oh holy shit.

“Rose Weasley,” He said. “Will you marry me?”

He prised open a small, velvet black box to reveal a stunning white gold ring with a considerably sized diamond.

“Shut up!” I said, pulling him to his feet. “What are you doing you twat?”

“Well you’re pregnant!” He insisted. “It’s what a guy’s supposed to do!”

“Oh how romantic!” I said sarcastically. “Scorpius we’re only twenty-two! And I just found out I’m pregnant; I think that’s enough to be occupying me for now. I don’t want to get married right now!”

He sighed and sat back down. “You don’t?”

“No,” I said softly. “And that doesn’t mean I don’t love you. But this is scary enough without getting married too…don’t you think?”

“I guess,” He said, grinning.

“Where did you even get this ring?” I asked, picking it up and staring at it, stunned.

“I bought it when I was in Wales,” He admitted. “I saw it and I thought I would never want to marry anybody but you. I knew my chances were slim, but I bought it just in case I was ever lucky enough to get a second chance with you.”

I smiled and took his hand, pressing my lips to it. “Well it’s a beautiful ring.”

“Thanks,” He said. “It cost an arm and a leg. I didn’t eat properly for weeks to buy that thing! Then you go and reject me!” He laughed.

“I’m sorry,” I said, smiling.

“So do you think you’ll ever want to marry me?” He asked, looking hopeful.

I sighed. To be honest, after the circus that was my wedding to Mark, I would have been pretty happy to never get married. But things may definitely change in the future.

“Put the ring away for another day,” I said, handing him the box. “In the future, when the time is right. And do me a favour, next time don’t propose in your parents’ kitchen wearing your trackies and a dodgy haircut, okay?”

He laughed. “Okay. So we’ll just focus on the baby for now. First on the list is…?”

“Getting a check-up,” I said firmly. “We need to know the baby is okay before we tell everyone. Then we start saving like crazy.”

“Got it,” He said. “So we’re really doing this? We’re having a baby?”

I bit my lip nervously and nodded.

“We’re having a baby.”

*

A/N They're having a baby! Next chapter will have the reactions of the Malfoys and the Weasleys so stay tuned! And as always your reviews make me so happy xxx
 


Chapter 28: Running To Stand Still
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Holy moly chapter 28!!! I cannot believe it! Hope you enjoy this one, title inspired by U2

*

 

The plan was to tell my family as soon as possible; I hated keeping things from them anyway, but too many people already knew. Dominique and Megan of course, which therefore meant Steven, would know. And now Albus knew too. He was ecstatic at the news, and thought it was the best thing in the world; his favourite cousin and his best friend having a baby. I only wished I shared his enthusiasm.

By the time a week had passed, I simply had to tell my family, namely my Mum. Unfortunately, I’d finally mustered the courage to tell them on a far from convenient day; Mum’s birthday. But I was doing it tonight; Dad was having a party for her and I was telling everyone. If I didn’t do it now I never would.

Scorpius and I were heading to the party at eight, so at seven o’clock, we made the scary decision to tell his parents.

“I thought you two were going to your Mum’s birthday?” Said Astoria, as we sat down in the living room.

“We are,” I said. “But we decided to drop by first.”

“Yeah, Mum, Dad, we’ve got some news.” Said Scorpius, nervously.

“Rose,” Said Draco in his familiar drawl. “You’re pregnant aren’t you?”

I gasped. How the hell had he guessed? I shot a look at Scorpius, who looked as surprised as I felt.

“Yes,” I admitted. “How did you know?”

“I could just tell,” He said. “It was pretty predictable.”

“Right Dad,” Said Scorpius, shaking his head. “Well you were right.”

 “Oh my goodness!” Said Astoria tearfully. “I mean its wonderful news but it’s a little shocking!”

“Tell me about it,” I muttered, smiling at her. She smiled back.

“How far gone are you?” She asked.

“Ten weeks,” I said. “Which is pretty terrifying. I’m due April 2nd.”

“Right,” Said Draco, uncomfortably. “Terrifying. Yes. So… how do you both feel about it?”

“Scared,” Said Scorp. “And nervous. But hopefully we’ll manage.”

“Of course you will!” Said Astoria, confidently. “Rose do your family know?”

“Not yet,” I admitted. “We’re telling them tonight. But Albus knows. It’s been really hard adjusting to the idea, and I know you’re not even supposed to tell people until after the twelve week scan so we were keeping it to ourselves, but I couldn’t keep it from my family anymore.”

“Where are you planning to live?” Asked Draco.

I smiled. You could always rely on Scorpius’ Dad to be straight to the point. No messing. I knew all about the rivalry between him and Uncle Harry, but I reckoned they were actually pretty similar.

“We’ll get somewhere together,” Scorpius explained. “We just have to save enough money first.”

“You know we will support you,” Said Draco. “You shouldn’t have to struggle for anything; this is our grandchild after all.”

“Thanks Dad,” Said Scorpius. “But we’re going to be parents. We need to take responsibility for the…baby.” He visibly paled, and I could tell even saying it was making him sick with nerves. I’d felt like that since I found out.

“Even still,” Said Draco firmly. “We won’t this baby go without anything. Congratulations.”

“Well that went well!” I exclaimed, as we strolled up the path to Mum and Dad’s arm in arm.

“Extremely well,” He agreed. “Do you think we can expect that from your parents?”

“Oh yeah,” I said sarcastically. “I’m sure they’ll be just thrilled that I’m twenty-two years old and expecting a child with the son of their childhood enemy.”

“Not to mention not married, and not living together.” He added, shaking his head. “You really are a disappointment, Weasley.”

“Well it’s your fault!” I muttered, as we let ourselves in to my crowded, lavishly decorated childhood home. We hung up our coats and lingered in the hall for a second.

“It’s both our fault actually,” He said, stroking my arms. “Are you sure you’re ready to do this?”

I took a deep breath. “As I’ll ever be. Shit I’m scared Scorpius!”

“You never know,” He said. “It might be fine.”

“Well,” I sighed, pulling him towards the kitchen. “There’s no time like the present!”

“Rose!” Exclaimed Mum. “Darling you’re here!”

“Happy Birthday Mum!” I said, hugging her, and handing the gift I’d bought her. “Are you having a good night?”

“Wonderful,” She said. “Your Dad has done a great job organising the party…”

“I can see that,” I smiled, hugging Dad. “Nice work Mr Weasley!” I joked.

“It was all me, thank you!” Said Harry, who had just joined us. “Hi Scorpius, how are you?”

“Yeah, fine thanks.” He said. “Is Albus here?”

“In the lounge,” Replied Harry.

“Can I talk to you two in private?” I said quietly to Mum and Dad. Scorpius and I had already agreed it would be better for me to tell them myself. If he wasn’t there Dad couldn’t lash out at him.

“Of course,” Said Mum, frowning.

“We’ll go upstairs,” Said Dad, looking similarly confused.

I nodded, and glanced at Scorpius before following them. He gave me an encouraging nod and I managed a smile. “See you in a bit,” I whispered, and then went upstairs after my parents.

“So what’s all this about?” Asked Mum, sitting down on her and Dad’s bed. Dad took a seat in the armchair in the corner and I leaned against Mum’s dresser.

“I need to tell you something,” I admitted. “And there’s really no way to say it so I might as well just come out with it…I’m pregnant.”

Silence. It lasted a lifetime before anyone spoke.

“Pregnant?” Whispered Dad, while Mum sat motionless.

“Yes,” I replied quietly.

“Right,” He said. “Well that’s…that is just…right.”

I cringed, and his expression softened. He got out of his seat and came over to put an arm round me.

“It’s a massive shock.” He admitted. “How do you feel about it?”

“Scared,” I admitted in a small voice. “But I’m going to do it,” I said surely.

“Of course you are,” He said with a small smile. “Well if that’s how you feel then we’ll support you one-hundred percent.”

“Thanks Dad,” I whispered in astonishment. “Mum?”

My Mum finally looked up at me and spoke in a lifeless voice.

“You stupid girl.”

“Mum!” I exclaimed, while Dad frowned at her.

“Well is it any wonder?” She demanded. “For God’s sake Rose! How stupid could you be? That’s it! Your whole life ruined!”

“That’s enough, Hermione!” Said Dad angrily.

“You should be agreeing with me!” She shouted at Dad. “Surely you can’t be pleased about this!”

“Mother!” I said, furiously. “Don’t talk as if I’m not here. You have a problem you look at me and you tell me what it is!”

“Fine I will!” She said. “My problem is that you are my beautiful, intelligent daughter. And you are the best Healer St Mungo’s has seen in decades and now what are you going to be? A single mother with no prospects and a broken heart!”

I felt as if she’d slapped me. It probably would have hurt less.

“No,” I said, shaking my head tearfully. “I’m not the best Healer St Mungo’s has seen in decades, Mum. I’m a mediocre Healer who gets by! Maybe if you stop painting me as this perfect saint you won’t be so disappointed when I fall short.”

“Well I’m sorry Rose, but that’s what mothers do!” She said. “Of course you’ll know all about that yourself soon.” She added spitefully.

“Rose she doesn’t mean this,” Said Dad, eyeing Mum angrily.

“Oh yes she does,” I argued, looking only at my Mum. “You know I’ve known about this for a week now and all I’ve wanted to do is just tell my Mum and have her assure me that everything will be fine. And instead you tell me that Scorpius will leave me and I have no life now!”

“That’s not what I said,” She said, looking at the floor.

“But it’s what you meant!”

She looked up at me and there were tears in her eyes. “Surely you can understand?” She whispered. “I just wanted so much more for you. And it’s such a shock!”

“Of course I understand!” I said. “How shocked do you think I am? Don’t you think I wanted a few more years of being a career girl and having nothing to worry about other than paying this month’s rent? But things change!”

“They do,” Said Dad. “And you just learn to adapt Rose, and that’s exactly what you will do.”

I stared at Mum sadly. “I can’t believe Dad is taking this better than you. You’re my Mum you’re supposed to comfort me and congratulate me and be excited!”

“But Rose…how could you let this happen?” She whispered.

I shrugged sadly. “Haven’t you ever been so…caught in the moment Mum? That you just forget everything because you love someone?”

Dad looked down, clearly uncomfortable at the direction the conversation had taken. I didn’t hold it against him; he had been an absolute saint, and I owed him everything right now for not freaking out.

Mum looked at Dad and I could tell she was remembering the times she had been in the exact position I’d described. It slightly disturbed me, but I realised that one day Mum and Dad were just a young couple like me and Scorpius.

“I’m sorry,” She finally said. “I overreacted Rose, I’m sorry. I was in shock.”

I laughed in spite of myself. “I don’t care.” I said. “As long as you’re on board. Both of you,” I added, taking Dad’s hand. “I mean let’s be honest this is going to have to be a team effort; me having a baby!”

Mum laughed tearfully. “I think you might be better than you think you will. I just can’t believe it…”

“You and me both,” I said, just as I had to Astoria. “And I know its Scorpius and you don’t exactly love him…” I sighed. “But please don’t blame him or hold it against him.”

“Rose,” Said Dad, putting his arm around me. “As long as you’re happy we’ll be proud of you. And Scorpius makes you happy, anyone could see that. And you know I have a feeling this baby will make us all very happy…even though I’m much too young and handsome to be a Grandpa!”

“I can’t believe you’re being so relaxed about this!” I exclaimed, with tears in my eyes.

“Neither can I,” Muttered Mum, sitting down and running a hand through her hair. She still looked astounded.

Dad shrugged cheerily. “I’ve never really understood people who act like a baby is the worst thing in the world. Come to think of it I’m actually pretty excited!”

I stared at him in disbelief, and glanced at Mum. “Did you drug him or something?”

*

The first month flew by. I was so caught up in work and my pregnancy and Scorpius, and the weeks just went by like seconds. The craziest thing of all was that I kept forgetting I was pregnant; it would take Dominique to remind me that actually I couldn’t have a glass of wine, or that it might not be the best idea in the world to book a holiday for next year, before I remembered.

The rest of the family’s reactions had been thankfully far less dramatic than my Mum’s; Nana Molly was beside herself with excitement, Harry and Ginny were quiet but soon got used to the idea. James had been pretty funny;

“You’re having a baby? Well that is just fantastic because now you can take your baby to the park with me and Emma and I can point out all the girls I like and you can tell me what you think!”

I wasn’t stupid; I knew there were a few members of my family that definitely judged me for the fact that I was having a baby at twenty-two with my Malfoy boyfriend. Namely Uncle Percy. But I didn’t hold it against them; I judged me.

Megan had been amazing in those first few weeks. She talked me through the things I could expect and was constantly assuring me that she was there for me. I realised this was her way of paying me back after my support to her when she was pregnant with Allie, and I was incredibly grateful for it. Allie’s reaction however, had been all together unexpected.

“Aunt Rose, is it true you’re having a baby?”

“Yes, I am,” I had told her. “But not for a while yet.”

Her adorable little face had gone into a dissatisfied scowl, her little lips pouting just like her mother.

“What do you think?” I asked her quietly.

She looked up at me and I was startled to see tears glittering in her eyes.

“Does this mean you’re not going to be my Godmother anymore?”

“What?” I whispered. “No! Of course not! I will always be your godmother Allie, you know that.”

“But you won’t have time for me anymore,” She said quietly, looking at the floor. “You’ll be too busy with your baby.”

I pulled her onto my lap and hugged her closely. “No. You will be able to help me look after the baby. You’ll be its Auntie Allie same as I’m your Aunt Rose.”

“Really?” She asked, her eyes lighting up. “I’ll be its Aunt?”

“Absolutely.” I promised. “But please don’t think I wont have time for you,” I said quietly. “I don’t want you to forget that you are my favourite girl and you always will be.”

“I won’t,” She replied, hugging me back.

So once Allie was on board, it seemed everything was going well. I was swamped at work however, with my mind constantly preoccupied. It seemed now that I wanted time to slow down, it was passing me by and I couldn’t stop it.

October went by in the same way; Scorpius and I were saving every knut to put away for the baby (even though Mum and Dad had insisted on giving us everything we needed the same as Draco and Astoria) and trying to mentally prepare myself for becoming a Mum. As the leaves began to fell and the temperature dropped from the heatwave of our summer, the weeks started ticking by.

I resented my own stupidity for not realising sooner that I was pregnant; by the time I’d taken a test I had already been ten weeks gone. Those first two months should have been the time for me and Scorpius to freak out and convince each other that there was no way on this earth we could raise a child, but we had been blissfully unaware the whole time. Instead here I was, eighteen weeks gone and convinced this was going to be a disaster.

“You can see it on you already!” Said Scorpius, who was sitting next to Dom on the couch while I stood in front of them, my t-shirt rolled up.

“Only from certain angles,” Said Dom. “See if you turn side-on, it’s really obvious, but from the front you might just be a little bit chubby.”

“Great,” I muttered, covering my stomach again and sitting back down in between them.  

“You do have that whole pregnancy glow thing though,” Dom told me. “Nice shiny hair and clear, glowing skin.”

“Well that’s something,” I laughed.

“So,” Said Scorp, taking my hand. “Twenty week scan in a fortnight. We can find out what it is at this one can’t we?”

“Yeah we can,” I replied, looking ahead out the window.

“Do you want to?” He continued. “Just my Mum and Dad were wondering if we were going to find out or not…”

“I don’t know. I think so,” I said. “I mean the pregnancy itself was enough of a surprise…I don’t think I want any more surprises.”

“I want to find out,” He said, nodding. “It means we can pick names.”

I looked up at Scorpius curiously, and Dominique continued the conversation happily; she was beyond excited.

“What names do you both like? For a boy or a girl?”

“I’m not sure. I like nice normal names,” Said Scorpius. “I’m not inflicting a trademark Malfoy curse of a name on it. I like Ava for a girl I think.”

“Ava’s nice,” I muttered. Charlie bounded up to the couch and curled in beside me. I scratched behind his ears absently.

“I think Dominic is perfect for a boy!” Said Dom, grinning.

“You’re pushing it Weasley!” Laughed Scorpius.

“I’m going to bed,” I said, getting up with Charlie under my arm.

“Are you okay?” Asked Dom at once, while Scorpius frowned.

“Fine,” I assured them. “Just tired.”

“Do you want me to just go home?” Scorpius asked. “If you want to sleep yourself?”

“Stay if you want,” I said, yawning. “But you two should stay up I just need to get to bed. See you in the morning.”

Ten minutes later, I had changed and gotten into bed with Charlie lying at the bottom. I pulled the pregnancy magazine Megan had given me the other day from my bedside cabinet. I sighed and opened at the article I had began to read last night.

I did my best to concentrate on the words, but my eyes still welled up with tears. I was ashamed of myself; I couldn’t even join my boyfriend in discussing names for our baby, and I saw how it had hurt him that I seemed so uninterested.

But I couldn’t help it. I couldn’t talk about names for a baby that I didn’t feel anything towards. Much less a baby that I wanted.

 

*

 

 

A/N Thoughts? I'm sorry Rose isn't all together overwhelmed about the pregnancy, but I feel this is more realistic. She's having the baby and she will try to make it work, but that doesn't mean it's what she wanted. Let me know what you guys think, much love!
 


Chapter 29: Comfortably Numb
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Sorry sorry sorry sorry sorry! I know I never normally leave updates this long guys but I have had so much on! I went to London, then I started back at uni and I've been working too so it's all a bit mental! But here we are with another little chappie for you - enjoy! Title inspired by Scissor Sisters.

 

*

 

I dragged a hand through my hair and looked up at my reflection in the bathroom mirror. My face was pale and drawn and my mouth tasted like acid. I pulled my wand from my pocket and conjured a glass of water, draining it down in one gulp.

“Pull yourself together Weasley,” I muttered. “It’s only morning sickness.”

Only morning sickness, but it was every morning and it was doing my head in. I thought it was annoying to wake up desperate for the toilet, or dying for a glass of water, but this was a lot worse.

I smoothed down my robes, fixed my hair and smiled at myself. Nobody liked a moaner.

“You were away an awfully long time,” Commented my boss, Healer Greene, as I emerged from the toilets. “Everything okay?”

“Fine,” I smiled, taking the pile of case notes she handed me.

“Are you sure?” She pressed. “It’s just…you’ve been acting off for weeks now,”

“I’m just busy,” I assured her. “Honestly I’m fine.”

“Rose,” She said, looking me directly in the eyes. “You’re pregnant, aren’t you?”

I sighed and looked at the ground. I knew she had guessed it days ago, and there was no point in hiding it any longer.

“I’m sorry I didn’t tell you. I’m just really scared and worried about having to come off work and…I’m sorry.”

“So I assume it wasn’t planned?” She asked, motioning me into her office.

“You assume correct,” I replied, sitting down opposite her.

“But you’re making a go of it?”

“Yes,” I said. “It will probably be the hardest thing in the world seeing as…well I can’t really imagine me being a mother – but I’m doing it.”

“Well that’s good,” She said. “And don’t worry about work; when is the baby due?”

“The start of April,” I replied. “So not for a while yet!”

She laughed. “Believe me, it will fly in. So you can decide when you go off on maternity leave and how long you want to take. Knowing you, you’ll probably want to work right up to your due date but we can discuss that. Are you looking after yourself?”

“Yeah, sure,” I said absently. “To be honest I’m still just trying to get my head around it all.”

“You must be feeling pretty confused,” She commented carefully.

I sighed, looking at her. It was odd, but in many ways I found it easier to be honest with Healer Greene than with anyone else. She was just such a mentor to me.

“I feel like I can’t admit it to anyone,” I whispered. “But the baby…the thing is well everyone is really excited but…I don’t want it.”

She nodded. “I know you don’t. Rose you’re twenty-two, you’re at the start of your career of course you don’t want a baby right now. But I promise you, that will all change when you have it.”

“How do you know?” I asked, with tears welling up in my eyes. “What if I just never connect with it and I can’t love it?”

“Because I know,” She said simply. “Rose, when I fell pregnant with my son I was only twenty-four, and he was the result of a very casual relationship that definitely wasn’t going anywhere. I felt exactly the way you did…I didn’t want him and I resented my pregnancy.”

She shrugged. “Needless to say the father didn’t stick around, so I did it myself, with the help of my parents. Peter is nearly 16 now and I honestly don’t know where the time has gone. It’s just been the two of us for the last sixteen years, and regardless of all the other things I’ve achieved, he is my greatest success and what I am most proud of. I didn’t want him, but the second I held him as a baby I was absolutely hooked. And I can assure you, when you hold yours for that first time; you’ll feel exactly the same.”

I wiped a tear off my cheek and smiled. “I hope you’re right, Healer Greene. You know it’s weird…they say a woman becomes a mother when she finds out she’s pregnant, and a man becomes a dad the first time he sees his baby. With my and Scorpius it’s like it’s the other way around! He’s just so excited and I’m…not.”

“You should feel grateful that you have him. You’re incredibly lucky.”

“I know,” I said sincerely. “I have two friends who both went through their pregnancies without the fathers around. I just feel a bit disappointed in myself…I never thought this would happen to me.”

“I’ll let you in on a secret,” She said, getting up. “Nobody ever does! Now you must be about 18 weeks yes? Then you’ll have a scan in two weeks…will you find out what it is?”

“I want to,” I said, shrugging. “But Scorpius wants a surprise. I just feel its more practical to find out. What do you think?”

“Each to their own,” She said. “I didn’t with Peter, but I sort of wished I had. I think there’s enough surprises in becoming a parent for the first time.”

“I suppose you’re right,” I agreed, laughing. “But I have to ask…with Peter, do you ever resent him now for what you might have had?”

She smiled. “Not once in the sixteen years that he has lived. And that’s not something I can explain to you Rose; its just a mother’s love for her child. You’ll see.”

“Thanks Healer Greene,” I said.

“You’ll be okay Rose,” She promised me. “I’m sure of it.”

I just wished I could believe her.

*

I sighed and Albus laughed again.

“I really don’t see what the big deal is,” He said. “What’s your big aversion to me driving you to the party all about?”

“Oh I don’t know,” I said sarcastically. “Maybe the fact that this is the car you nearly killed yourself and my boyfriend in?”

He laughed again and I shook my head.                  

“Well I like it,” Stated Dom from the back seat. “And Rose be reasonable; you can’t apparate or Floo now you’re preggy…how else were you going to get all the way to Harry and Ginny’s?”

“I could get a taxi! Or a bus!” I exclaimed, grinning. “Or a…horse!”

“I think it was nice of you to come and pick us up Al,” Dom said. “A bus probably wouldn’t have been the best idea in Halloween costumes.”

I couldn’t argue with that. Albus was changing into his costume when we arrived at the house, but Dominique and I were already dressed in our co-ordinating, and very last minute sailor costumes. With my four month old sidekick in tow, I was preparing myself for the inevitable; being referred to as the “fat one”.

“Speaking of which,” I said. “Is Frankie looking forward to her first Potter Halloween party?”

“I think so,” He answered, taking the cut off up to his parents’ large house. “Mum and Dad really like her and she’s used to them these days. I mean that’ll be a year next month.”

“Just think, that’s over a year since we went to the Bahamas!” Said Dom, as we got out the car. “How crazy is that?”

“I know,” Agreed Al. “And everything has changed so much.”

“Yeah, you’re with Frankie, Rose is with Scorp, they’re having a baby….and then there’s me; still single.” She shrugged, grinning.

“You never know,” I said as I went to open the door. “The man of your dreams might be just around the –oh!”

Just before I’d grasped the handle, the door has been opened and out came James, who was dressed up as a clown, with a shy-looking man by his side wearing a black tuxedo.

“Rose!” Exclaimed James. “Al, Dom, you’re here! Nice costumes girls!”

“Oh thanks James!” I said sarcastically. “They’re shit – we know. Who’s you friend?”

“This is Max,” He said, motioning to Max who waved awkwardly. “He’s a new start on the Canons; may look weedy but I’m telling you he’s a seriously good Chaser.”

“James stop talking about him as if he’s not here!” I muttered. “Nice to meet you Max, I’m Rose, the clown’s cousin. And this is Dom, our other cousin.”

“Dominique actually,” She said, shaking his hand and flipping her hair. Wow, Dom was seriously into shy Max.

“Well let’s get in,” I said, grinning at Albus. “Is your Dad here yet James?”

“No why?”

“Because when he gets home that means my boy is out of work too. I can’t believe your Dad is giving the Aurors a meeting on Halloween for Christ’s sake.”

“That’s Dad,” Said Al, who was on his way upstairs. “I’m going to put my costume on, you lot go and mingle.”

“Yeah I’ve got this blonde waiting for me,” Muttered James. “Catch up with you later.”

He rushed into the kitchen and I smiled round at Dom and Max.

“So who are you supposed to be Max?” She said coyly.

“Oh, erm, James Bond,” He said, grinning nervously. “It was my sister’s idea.”

“I like it,” She said. “Anyone who’s partial to shaken not stirred is a friend of mine…”

Fucking hell. Dom would eat this poor bloke alive. He didn’t have a chance in hell of escaping her now. I went off into the lounge to find people who weren’t currently having eye-sex, and stumbled across my parents and Ginny, who were dressed up as some gay music group from like the eighteen-hundreds. Apparently it was a four, and Uncle Harry was the missing piece of the puzzle.

“Wow,” I said. “You three look…great!”

“Thanks Rosie!” Grinned Dad. “So do you!”

“You’re glowing,” Said Mum, placing her hand on my ever so slightly rounded stomach.

“The weeks are going in fast! Has the baby kicked yet?” Asked Aunt Ginny.

“Not yet,” I admitted. “I think I can sort of feel it move around sometimes, but I may just be imagining it. Apparently it should be kicking any day now.”

“Oh I remember the first time James kicked,” She said, smiling fondly. “I was so excited, Harry too! Little did we know just what we were letting ourselves into.”

We laughed, and Dad put his arm around me. “Well you’ve got all of that to look forward to Rosie. It’s a hell of a journey.”

“Yeah,” I said quietly. “That’s what I’m terrified of. Excuse me.”

I knew I should be trying not to say all these things; it was clearly upsetting my family and friends to see that I was less than enthused. But it was becoming almost impossible to act excited about this pregnancy.

I sat down at the kitchen table, and took a sip from my drink. It was Halloween and I always loved Halloween, especially the Potters’ parties. But I was just sitting here, moping over my non-alcoholic cocktail.

Not even the sight of Ginny Potter marching Albus up the stair in front of everyone because he had thought it would be a “funny” idea to dress up as Voldemort could cheer me up.

“How’s the Mum-to-be?” Asked Victoire, joining me in the kitchen with baby Arthur in her arms.

“Fine,” I said, smiling. “How are you two?”

“We’re good,” She replied. “Arthur’s loving his first Halloween, even though he doesn’t have a clue what’s going on.” She laughed, looking adoringly at her seven month old son. “Do you want to hold him? Get some practice?”

“Oh,” I said. “Um…right okay.” I took him nervously in my arms and he stretched out, looking up at me curiously.

“That’ll be your own before you know it,” Said Victoire.

“Yeah,” I muttered. “Vic, when you found out you were going to have Arthur…did you ever feel like you were just totally not ready?”

She looked thoughtful. “I was really scared…but I always knew I would manage because I just wanted him so much. But it was different for me I was already married and older…why do you feel that way?”

“A bit,” I admitted.

“You’ll be fine,” She promised. “The good thing about being from a family as big as ours is there is always plenty of support there. And even better than that there is always a babysitter!” She joked. “I better go and feed him,” She said, lifting Arthur out of my arms. “Get back to the party you! Enjoy the freedom while it lasts believe me.”

I believed her only too well. But that didn’t mean I wanted to go and talk to all my family plus the Potters’ friends about how exciting my pregnancy was.

“Some party, eh?” Called a familiar voice from the doorway. I looked up and smiled up at Scorpius, who was dressed up as a vampire.

“But that can’t be right,” He said, pulling me to my feet and placing his hands on my waist. “Because if it was then you wouldn’t be sitting in an empty kitchen looking depressed, would you?”

“The party is good,” I said, pressing my lips to his. “I’m just feeling a bit boohoo…and fat.”

He laughed. “You are not fat you lunatic. You’re preggers and barely showing.”

“Thanks,” I murmured. “Even though you have to say that. I like your costume.”

“I like yours too,” He grinned. “Now come on let’s go and mingle! What are you even doing sitting in here alone anyway?”

I sighed. “I’m all out of sorts, Scorp. I’m really struggling with this whole pregnancy thing.”

“Why? Is everything okay?” He asked at once.

“Everything’s fine,” I assured him. “I just…” I bit my lip as my eyes filled up and he gazed at me worriedly.

“Rose, tell me. What is it?” He asked gently.

“Scorpius…this baby, I don’t love it.” I said, shrugging. “And I know that’s terrible and I’m sorry. I wish I could make myself feel something towards it and want it but I can’t. And I’m so scared because…because what if I have it and I just can’t love it?”

I wiped my eyes, and looked down at the table in shame. I was so horribly ashamed of myself for saying it, but it was finally the truth.

“You’re just still in shock Rose,” He assured me. “Once the baby comes along-”

“But I don’t want a baby!” I interrupted. “I just don’t want one. I’m not mother material, I don’t have any maternal instincts!”

“That’s enough,” He said sharply. He was frowning angrily at me. “Just stop it alright? I don’t care if you’re in shock or what, don’t you dare sit here and tell me you don’t want our baby. It’s ours Rose, half you and half me. How can you not already love it?”

“I don’t know,” I said, shaking my head.

“Well you better just figure it out,” He said coldly. “Because I refuse to sit around and watch you have a child that you won’t even love. You don’t think this has been a shock for me? Because it has! And I’ve had to stay strong and positive for you – have you ever thought about how hard it’s been for me?”

“You can walk away!” I shouted. “You can go but I’m stuck with this kid for the rest of my life Scorpius!”

“And you really think I’d do that? Leave you?”

“Well it wouldn’t be the first time!” I retorted before I could stop myself.

““So that’s how it is.” He muttered, walking towards the door. “Well I may as well go now. Wouldn’t want to waste any more of your time.”

*

 

A/N Well?? It's been a while since I threw a little ScoRose fight in but this one was so inevitable! Please don't hate Rose for her feelings about the pregnancy, throughout this story and Temptation I've always written her as this strong, supportive character, but now we're seeing a more vulnerable, scared side to her. But it's not as if it was ALL doom and gloom, new romance interest for Dom?? What did you think on Max? More on him next chappie, which will continue at the party! Reviews make me smile :)
 


Chapter 30: Crossfire
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Back with a speedy update to make up for my absence! Hope everyone enjoys, title inspired by the amazing Brandon Flowers! 

 

*

“Just like that?” Dom whispered. “He just walked out?”

“Well he’s still here,” I elaborated. “He just walked out the kitchen. I think he’s talking to Al…but it’s not about that.”

“So what is it about Rose? You’re not going to split up with him are you?”

I sighed. I could hear the party continue downstairs, loud voices, laughter, singing. Dom and I were sitting in James’ old bedroom, and I had filled her in on the fight.

“I love Scorpius,” I told her honestly. “A little too much I think. And us splitting up is the last thing I want but I’m just…scared.”

Dom ran a hand through her glossy, blonde hair and frowned. “Nobody said it wouldn’t be scary,” She pointed out. “But you have to trust him, and let him support you.”

“I do,” I insisted. “It’s really not about Scorpius; it’s about me and the baby…”

I fell silent as there was a knock on the door and in came James. He smiled at the pair of us and looked to Dominique.

“You pulling my mate then?” He asked her.

“Max?” She asked, and he nodded. “He’s really nice. He’s so shy it’s cute.”

“Then why have you left him on his own?” He said, flopping onto the bed beside us.

“I was helping Rose,” She replied, taking my hand. “She comes first.”

“Well Rose has got her big cousin,” He said, putting an arm around me. “Go find the bloke, we’ll be fine won’t we Rosie?”

“Yeah, go and find him Dom. He really likes you.” I insisted.

“You’re sure?” She asked, uncertainly.

“I’m sure,” I smiled.

“So what’s got you so upset then?” Asked James when she had left.

“Scorpius and I had a fight,” I admitted.

“Ah, that makes sense,” He said. “I saw him talking to Al looking all depressed. What happened?”

“He’s not happy with me,” I said. “Because….because I don’t want our baby.”

James raised his eyebrows in surprise, his eyes flashing down to my stomach and back again. He smiled slightly, then gave me a hug.

“Do you think I’m a horrible person?” I whispered.

“Definitely not,” He said. “But tell me this; is it really that you don’t want it? Or that you just don’t think you’ll be able to cope?”

I leaned against his shoulder and ignored the tears that ran down my face.

“Well it’s true. I won’t be able to cope, will I? James I am so scared. How can I have a baby? I barely look after myself?”

“Rose you will be fine, I promise. Aren’t you seeing the irony here?”

“What do you mean?” I cried.

“Five months ago we were having this exact conversation, just the other way around.” He pointed out. “I was convinced that I couldn’t handle being a Dad to Emma and you were telling me that I could and I would. And look at me now. You were right.”

“That’s different,” I said. “You’re stronger than me James. I’m not strong enough for this.”

“Well I don’t believe that for a second,” He said, frowning. “You are the strongest person I know Rose, without a shadow of a doubt. And you can do this. You just can. Believe me, because I believe in you.”

“But-”

“No buts.” He said firmly. “You can do this. And you won’t just cope, you’ll be brilliant at it. You can do it Rose.”

It was five words. Just five regular words that people said everyday. But sitting there, on Halloween at the house of my godparents at the age of just twenty-two, those five words from my cousin would stay with me for the rest of my life.

“I believe you,” I whispered.

James had given me the courage I needed to cope with my pregnancy. So I guess it turns out five words can make all the difference in the world.

*

“Mate, you need to go and make it right with her.” Al said seriously. “We both know it.”

“Why?” I demanded. “Why is it always me Al? I’m always the one in the wrong, the one do to the apologising. She really hurt me there and I’m supposed to just let it go?”

“Well yeah,” He said. “Because you love her.”

I shrugged. I was beginning to think I would never be good enough for Rose, and I was just destined to spend my life trying to please her and falling short.

“You know, the truth is it’s pretty fucking exhausting being Rose Weasley’s boyfriend most of the time.”

“She’s pregnant with your kid Scorp,” Al said, shrugging. “And you’ve been in love with her for the last eight years; you’re not going to let a stupid fight mess things up are you?”

“I don’t know. I just wish she would let me be what she deserves, let me make her happy. That’s all I want at the end of the day. And I’m so pissed off at her for the way she’s going on about the baby!”

“How d’you mean?” He asked.

“Like she’s the only one allowed to be scared! As if I’m not scared; Albus I am terrified. And I didn’t really want a baby either! But I’m dealing with it and accepting my responsibility. Why can’t she?”

“Well she’s the one actually having it,” Al pointed out.

“Yeah, and of course she thinks I’m going to leave her, as she so sweetly pointed out tonight.” I said, bitterly. “I swear to Christ if she’s going to hold that against me for the rest of my life I honestly can’t see any future for us.”

Al sighed. “You know you can’t say that mate. You were a dick to her and if she decides to throw it at you then you deserve it. All you can do it try to convince her that you won’t leave her.”

“I have no intention of leaving her!” I shouted.

“I know that,” Al laughed calmly. “But she doesn’t; she’s a girl. You know what they’re like, they can dissect a hundred different things from one look but they can see what’s staring them in the face.”

“And what am I supposed to do if she never believes me, Al?”

“She will one day,” He said surely. “Look, I’m not too great with predicting the future for relationships; there was a time when I thought Beth and me would get married and be together forever, and she now has a daughter with my brother! I thought Grace was the one but that crashed and burned…and now I’m sure I want Frankie but who knows? Right now Dom’s at her flat shagging Max and I can’t call whether that will be a one night stand or a solid relationship.”

He shrugged, and put his hand on my shoulder. “But I’m certain about you and Rose. If you too can survive enemy parents, the worst break-up in history and an in-the-way fiancé, then having a baby should be no problem. You guys are going to be together forever. The sooner you both work that out the better.”

*

I was going to find Scorpius, when he beat me to it. He came into James’ room, smiling at him as he passed. James gave me an encouraging nod and left us in privacy. As soon as Scorpius was within touching distance I got to my feet and crushed myself into him, enveloping my arms around his waist.

“I really hate it when we fight,” I whispered.

“Me too,” He said quietly. “I’m really sorry for walking out on you there.”

“I know. I’m sorry for what I said…I don’t really think you would ever leave me; I was just angry and upset.” I confessed. “But Scorpius I need to know that even when I do say things that piss you off, you promise to never walk out like that. I can’t cope with it.”

“I promise you.” He murmured in a low voice. “I won’t let you down.”

I nodded and leant my head against his chest.

“But I need a promise from you too,” He continued. I looked up and he raised his eyebrows.

“You need to promise me that you’ll talk to me if you’re feeling that way. Like you can’t cope; if this is ever going to work then we need to be completely honest with each other Rose. Even if it means we end up fighting; even if it means you want to give…to give the baby up for adoption.”

I closed my eyes and sighed. That he would do that for me, despite how much he already cared for this baby, reminded just how much I loved Scorpius Malfoy.

“I don’t want to give it up for adoption,” I said honestly. “I actually had a really good talk with James and I’m feeling better about it already.”

“James?” He asked with a laugh.

“Yeah,” I said, laughing too. “Turns out fatherhood has made him pretty wise.”

“So you really want to keep it? You’re sure?”

I looked down at my tiny bump and placed my hands around it instinctively.

“It’s our baby isn’t it? I’ll learn how to cope, but I get the feeling we might be okay you know Scorp.”

“Well this is an improvement,” He said, shaking his head. “You’re like a fucking tap you know. Hot water; cold water; hot water…”

“Shut up,” I laughed. “And we said no more swearing in front of the baby!”

*

With everything I had going on these days, it was becoming near impossible to find time for everyone important in my life. So I was seriously pleased to finally meet my up with Megan this afternoon, even to just go with her to pick Allie up from school and get a coffee.

Megan had been grilling me on everything that had been going on with Scorpius and the baby, but I felt myself holding back some of the doubt and fear I’d been feeling before. It was strange; although Megan was and always would be my best friend, I was so much more honest with Dominique than anyone else these days; in many ways she was more like a best friend to me.

“So, your scan’s tomorrow!” She said. “Have you decided whether you’re going to find out or not?”

“I really don’t know,” I admitted. “Half of me thinks I definitely want to, and the other half would rather wait. It’s such a hard decision!”

“Remember when I was pregnant with Allie,” She said. “You guys were all desperate for me to find out and I was adamant.”

“And you were so convinced it was a boy!” I laughed, finishing my cup of coffee. “Then out comes Allie.”

“She was definitely a surprise,” Megan agreed. “Does Scorpius want to know?”

“No way, he wants a surprise,” I smiled. “I just think it’s more practical to find out.”

“Maybe you should just sleep on it, and decide in the morning,” She suggested, thanking the waitress who had just given us the bill. “Meanwhile, I’ve looked out some of Allie’s old baby things so come over when you get a chance and see if you want anything.”

“Oh thanks, you’re a lifesaver.” I said. “Money is tight enough without having to buy everything brand new.”

“Can’t your parents help you out?” She asked.

“They’ve offered,” I assured her. “Mine and his. We just feel like we’ve gotten ourselves into this situation and its our responsibility to provide for the baby, not anyone else’s. I can’t just keep running to my parents.”

“I suppose,” She said, frowning. “Have you guys thought about somewhere to live?”

“Yeah, loads,” I said. “But we just can’t find the right place. Where I’m living now is so perfect, it’s right next to my work, not far from my Mum and Dad’s…finding somewhere like that again at that price is going to be a nightmare.”

“And I’m guessing you don’t want to stay with the Malfoys?” She asked, grinning.

“It’s not exactly top of my wish list,” I laughed. “To tell you the truth I would be happy to just stay with Dom until after the baby’s born and sort somewhere out later. But it’s just Scorpius…”

“He wants you and the baby living with him?” She guessed.

“Plus it’s really not fair on Dom,” I added. “I mean she doesn’t want a screaming baby keeping her awake. She wants to be able to bring guys back and throw parties!”

“To be honest I actually think she’d love you to stay,” Megan said quietly. “She told me she’s really going to miss you.”

I felt a flutter of warmth at her words and smiled. Dom had been so good to me, and I would really miss living with her too.

“I’ll see,” I said, shrugging. “I don’t know exactly what’s going to happen yet. And speaking of Dominique, I have stayed at Scorp’s for the last three nights in a row! She and Max have been keeping me awake half the bloody night with their sex!”

 Megan burst out laughing. “So her and this Max guy have really hit it off then?”

“She seems to like him,” I said, shrugging. “But to me it seems like a physical thing at the moment anyways.”

“Oh I hope they start going out!” Megan said. “I’d love Dom to get a boyfriend she’s been single for ages!”

“Yeah well her life’s been a lot less hectic as a result hasn’t it.” I pointed out. “Maybe staying single is the answer.”

Megan smiled. “Bit late for that now! Anyway, we need to go and get Allie now or we’ll be late.”

It was a gorgeous day, despite the cold temperature. One of those really crisp, sunny days, the type that reminded me of going for walks in the grounds at Hogwarts. I wrapped my coat tightly around me as we waited for Allie, who finally came strutting out of the playground with her army of friends by her side.

“Aunt Rose,” She grinned, ignoring Megan. “I missed you!”

“I missed you too,” I said, hugging her. “Did you have a good day?”

“Yeah,” She said, handing Megan her school bag. “I have a boyfriend!”

“A boyfriend?” Megan laughed as we walked along the street to the quiet little street where we could apparate.

She nodded. “His name is Robbie and he’s the same age as me. He loves me.”

Megan and I smiled at each other. Here Allie was, five years old and already mad about boys.

“How long has he been your boyfriend?” I asked.

“Just since today,” She said, as if it were obvious. “Mummy can Robbie come to play at our house tomorrow? Please?”

“Maybe next week,” Megan said. “Once I get a chance to talk to Robbie’s Mummy.”

I suppressed a laugh. Megan was a great Mum, but one thing she absolutely hated was the Mums of Allie’s friends. The majority of them were about ten years older than her and therefore felt they had the right to look down at Megan because she’d had a baby at sixteen. One time we went to pick up Allie from a birthday party when she was three and this bitch said Megan was more like a sister than a mother to Allie.

Needless to say she didn’t take kindly to Megan responding that she looked more like her kid’s grandmother than mother, but hey, we were only twenty at the time.

“Do you want to come to ours for dinner?” Asked Megan, as we went to disapparate. “Stevie’s making lamb.”

“I wouldn’t if I were you Aunt Rose,” Said Allie, shaking her head. “Daddy’s lamb is yuckier than sprouts.”

“You’re not getting lamb actually!” Retorted Megan, smiling.

“No its okay,” I said. “I’m going to call into The Burrow, see my Nana and stuff. I’ll catch up with you both next week okay?”

“Okay,” She said. “And you know where I am; don’t forget if you need anything.”

“I know.” I said. “See you soon.”

I was surprised to find James and Emma at the Burrow, sitting in Nana’s kitchen. James was practically inhaling a bowl of her soup while Nana fed Emma, who was getting bigger every time I saw her. It was unbelievable to think she was already five months old.

“So are you not working today Rose?” Asked Nana Molly, as I tucked into my own bowl of soup.

“Tonight,” I replied. “I’m on night shift.”

I swallowed a spoonful of the warm, tasty soup and was transported back to my childhood. I felt like for my entire life I would always be eating soup at The Burrow at some point.

Nana Molly frowned. “I hope they’ll take you off night shift once the baby comes.”

“Hopefully,” I responded. “Ideally I’d like to go part time but it just depends on whether we can afford it.”

“She’s still insisting none of the family gives her and Scorpius any financial help Nana,” Said James. “It’s so stupid.”

“It’s not like we’re poor!” I laughed. “We’ve got two well paid full-time wages coming in. I just don’t if we could afford to half my pay.”

“Well you know if you ever need a babysitter I’m here every day,” She said warmly. “I just love getting little Emma for the afternoon,” She said, wiping yoghurt from Emma’s smiley face.

“James,” I said, looking at Emma. “Do you ever wish you’d known Emma was going to be a girl?”

James laughed. “Just knowing she existed would have been a plus,” He joked. “I’m not really the right guy to ask, considering I didn’t know I was going to have a baby at all.”

“Well there was no such thing as a gender spells back when I was having babies,” Said Nana Molly. “But I think I’m glad. If I’d found out I was having another boy six times I think I might have went crazy!”

James and I laughed, and I thought to myself. Really it wasn’t going to make any kind of difference whether it was a boy or a girl; we would love it either way, and I honestly felt I would like both. A girl would be great, like a little Allie or Emma. But then I would love a boy who was a miniature Scorpius.

As I watched Nana Molly feeding Emma, I felt the most positive I had yet in my pregnancy. For the first time since I’d found out, I found myself considering names.

*

 

A/N Thoughts? I really want your opinion on whether or not you'd like Rose to find out the sex of the baby or not as I'm totally in two minds - hence Rose's uncertainty! Katy xxx
 


Chapter 31: More Than I Care To Lose
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Lots and lots in this chapter everyone! Pay close attention, baby's sex will be revealed, new living arrangements and a very sad shock at the end :( Enjoy!

 

*

 

“So as I said Mrs Kelly, just take the potion three times a day for the next week and don’t hesitate to pop back in if you need anything,” I said, handing the medication to my elderly patient who had accidently jinxed herself.

“Oh thank you ever so much,” She said, getting to her feet. “And I must say you’re looking very well dear, when will the little one be along?”

“February,” I smiled as I filled out her notes.

I laughed to myself as I filed her case notes away at the desk once she had left, aided by her attractive but way too young for me grandson. I was now at the oh so attractive stage of being clearly pregnant, but not yet really pregnant in the way that I looked amazing. Basically I just looked fat, but at least people knew why.

“Weasley!” Hollered Healer Greene from behind me. “Have you checked the time at all?”

I frowned round at her and then glanced at the clock on the wall.

“Shit,” I whispered, and she shook her head.

“You may want to join your boyfriend and cousin who have been waiting to go with you to your scan for twenty minutes now.” She said sarcastically. “Aren’t you excited about this?”

“Fifty-fifty.” I told her. “I’m nervous too. Anyway I better dash or there won’t be any scan to get excited about. I’ll see you tomorrow, yeah?”

“Of course,” She said. “I can’t wait to hear the news.”

“Hi!” I said, joining Scorpius and Dom who were sitting looking bored in the reception. “I’m so sorry I was swamped in there!”

“Let’s just go do this,” Said Scorpius nervously. “I just want to do it before I bottle it.”

I laughed. “Aren’t you excited?”

“Yeah, but it’s a big deal you know…I’m nervous.” He said shakily.

I took his hand and smiled. “You sound just like me.” I looked round to Dom as we started to walk the short distance to the maternity unit. “And how are we today Dominique?”

“Fine,” She said, smiling. She looked tired and frankly a little worn out, but I knew only too well that this was the result of several sleepless nights with Max.

“I was saying to Scorpius,” She continued. “Maybe you guys could come for dinner with Max and me tonight.”

“Oh,” I said, taken aback. “Yeah that would be nice.”

“Well don’t sound too excited!” She laughed.

“It’s just that I’ve generally spoken to Max twice in my life; first when I met him at the party, and second when I ran into him half-naked in the flat the other day. So as you could guess neither were particularly lengthy conversations.”

Dom smiled. “Well maybe that’s a chance for you to get to know him tonight. Rose I really like this one, it would mean a lot to me.”

“Of course,” I said, as we reached the ward. “But it’ll have to be later; we have to do the rounds with the news after this.” I added, rolling my eyes.

I was taken fairly quickly, which was surprising. I had been sure the grumpy Welcome Witch would make me wait seeing as I had turned up almost half an our late. I guess being staff did have its bonuses around here.

She showed the three of us into the small but bright cubicle where I would be getting my scan, and instructed me to lie down on the bed, before leaving and closing the curtains behind her.

I obliged, only somewhat willingly. It was unnatural for me to lie on raised, hospital bed, exposed and vulnerable like this, while Scorpius and Dom stood on either side. It made me feel weaker for some reason, when I was so used to being the strong one.

It didn’t take long for me to realise that this was my crazy pregnancy fears coming into play in disguise once more. I took off my Healer robes so I was dressed in a less obtrusive t-shirt and trousers.

“Good afternoon!” Exclaimed a cheery looking, middle-aged woman who had just joined us. She was short and plump, with kind eyes and curly, caramel coloured hair. “I’m Mary. I take it you’re Healer Weasley?”

“Rose is fine,” I said, nodding. This woman instantly made me feel more comfortable, and I felt myself relax slightly. “It’s nice to meet you. This is my boyfriend, Scorpius, and my cousin, Dominique.”

She smiled at both of them warmly, before returning her attention to me. She glanced me over before reading my case notes. It was bizarre, being the patient for a change. I hoped I made my patients feel this at ease.

“Okay, first baby I see? That’s exciting! Have you been feeling okay?” She asked, as she rolled my top up to expose my belly and pressed it lightly.

“Yeah I feel great,” I said. “The morning sickness has more or less passed now which is a relief.”

“Wonderful,” She said, taking out her wand and doing a few familiar check-up spells I performed daily. Blood pressure, pulse, and so on.

“Everything normal?” I asked, conversationally.

“You’re very healthy,” She said brightly “Now let’s see about that baby. Just lie right back for me Rose and relax.”

She squeezed the cold, gel-like substance onto my stomach and then slowly pulled her wand in different directions over it, until a small image became clear on the screen.

All three of us sat up a little straighter as we looked at it. It seemed just to be a black screen with a kind of grey pattern in the middle. I raised my eyebrows at Dom and Scorpius, who looked as clueless.

“Okay if you continue looking at the screen here, the image should become clearer,” She said quietly. “And if you listen carefully…”

She grinned as a low, fast-paced noise filled the room.

“You’ll hear your baby’s heartbeat,” She finished, nodding at me.

“That’s its heartbeat?” Scorpius whispered, taking my hand. “Our baby has a heartbeat?”

“Yes,” She laughed.

“Oh my God!” Whispered Dom, tearfully, taking my other hand.

I stared at the screen, transfixed, as the grey pattern slowly became clearer. There, on the tiny little screen, I could see it. My baby was there, with a tiny head and two arms and two legs. I could see it and I could hear it. This was unreal.

“Everything looks perfect with the baby,” Said Mary quietly. “It says here on the notes that you want to find out the sex…is that still the case?”

I looked at Scorpius and his expression matched how I felt. After seeing it and hearing it, how could I not find out?

“Yes, we still want to know,” I whispered.

Mary smiled at us. “Congratulations,” She said. “You’re having a baby boy.”

I could have been in that moment forever. Literally. I had spent the last twelve weeks fretting over how I didn’t want the baby and wasn’t ready for it. But in that second, with those five words, the it became a he and I fell in love with him. All in the space of about two seconds.

I looked at Scorpius and wanted to laugh. He was crying his eyes out. I made a mental note to remind myself to take the piss out of him later for that, but right now I was too overwhelmed. Dominique too was crying, not that I was surprised.

“A boy,” I whispered, smiling at the screen. I looked to Scorpius and he kissed my hand. “Our son. You’re going to have a boy!” I told him tearfully. 

Once I started the floodgates were open. Even Mary had to get a tissue. She and Dom left me with Scorpius for a couple of minutes on our own and he leaned down to kiss me.

“I can’t believe this,” He said, as I wiped the gel from my skin with a wave of my wand. He pulled my top down for me before kissing me again.

I stood up and hugged Scorpius tightly. I felt so overwhelmed and unbelievably happy; I couldn’t believe how much my feelings had changed about the baby in the last five minutes.

“I love you,” I whispered.

He smiled. “I love you too. Can we go and tell my parents?”

“Of course,” I replied. “And mine, and my Nana Molly. And we have to tell Al and James and Megan…maybe we should just put out an announcement,” I joked.

“I’ll get in touch with The Prophet,” He laughed.

We went round all the family, letting them know the good news. My Mum and Dad were ecstatic, Dad cried almost as much as Scorpius, which was hilarious. James was beyond excited too, saying that my son and Emma would be just like he and I when they grew up. I had to admit the thought was pretty nice.

“So you two must be feeling pretty grown up?” Said Dom, as we ate dinner. Scorpius had decided to stay and eat with us before going home. “Expectant parents to a little heartbreaker!”

I laughed. “Yeah, we haven’t even got a place to live, we’re so grown up!”

“I think we have to start thinking about staying with my Mum and Dad,” Said Scorpius. “I mean they have the room and we really don’t have much more choice,” He pointed out. “You’ve seen yourself, there’s nothing affordable that suits us.”

I sighed. “Scorp…I don’t want to stay with your parents! I’d rather just stay here with Dom until the baby is born than do that.”

“And then what?” He asked, frowning. “Continue looking for a flat while my baby gets older and older and I don’t even live with him?”

I shrugged. “We might have to.”

“Can I interrupt?” Asked Dom, putting her fork down. “I think I have the solution…you should both live here.”

“Thanks Dom,” Said Scorpius. “But you know what they say; three’s a crowd.”

“No, you’re not getting me,” She said. “I’m moving out, and Scorpius is moving in.”

“What?” I asked in shock. “We can’t let you do that!”

Scorpius nodded. “She’s right. No way Dom, you can’t move out this is your home.”

“Correction,” She said, shaking her head. “It’s your home. The pair of you; it always was…I was just keeping it warm until the pair of you figured it out.”

I sighed. “Are you sure about this?”

“One hundred percent,” She grinned. “I’ll get my own place. But I’m going to miss you Rose!”

“I’ll miss you too,” I said quietly. “Honestly it’s been a blast living with you. When am I losing you?”

“I’ll start getting my stuff packed up this week.” She said. “It’s good for you to be together, what with the baby coming and everything.”

“The baby won’t be here for another five months!” Said Scorp. “Don’t rush yourself out Dom.”

“I’d rather be in my own place for Christmas, which is only a month away!” She exclaimed. “I’m telling you he’ll be born before you know it!”

I smiled. She was so right.

*

I pulled my coat tighter around me, my thick scarf soft against my skin as the harsh, cold wind whipped at my face and blew my hair around madly. I ran up the steps, trying not to get blown over by the gale force winds as another crash of thunder rumbled above me.

“Don’t you just love winter?” Asked Steven sarcastically, letting me in.

“It’s crazy out there!” I said, as we watched a fork of lightning light up the sky.

“Good thing you apparated,” He muttered, while I gave him my coat and bag.

“Tell me about it,” I said. “Is Scorp here?”

“In the lounge, with everyone else. You’re last to arrive, as always Weasley,” He said, laughing. “You know if you weren’t my daughter’s godmother I think I’d disown you for your timekeeping.” 

I laughed, catching sight of Megan in the busy house and rushing over to give her a hug.

“Twenty-three,” I said, grinning as I handed her the present. “Happy Birthday. This is from Scorpius and I.”

“Oh thanks!” She said, expressing her delight at the hand bag I’d picked her.

“And where is my darling goddaughter this evening?” I asked.

“She’s staying at her Granny and Grandad’s, so her Mum and Dad can get drunk,” Laughed Steven, kissing Megan.

“Very nice,” I said. “Well obviously I’m not drinking so if you need any cooking or dishes done or anything I’ll help out.”

They wouldn’t have that of course. The party for Megan’s 23rd turned out to be a great night. Their house was jumping with everyone we knew; Dominique, who had brought Max, Al and Frankie, who were all soppy as this was a year to the day they’d met in this very house, Beth and Sophie, who I greeted civilly, Megan’s friends from work, and everyone else.

I stepped out to the conservatory. The wind continued outside in the black night, hammering against the glass, and I was grateful at the comfort of the warm, bright house that sheltered us from the crazy weather.

I found myself reminiscing about Megan’s last birthday, at which I’d also not been drinking. It seriously didn’t feel like a year ago; I was just back from the Bahamas with Al and Dom, and I had that explosive row with Scorpius. Things really had changed.

“You looking for round 2?” Asked Scorp, handing me a glass of orange juice.

“Oh yeah,” I said, smiling up at him. “What was it? Something along the lines of you leaving me and it all being your fault, yeah?”

“Sounds about right,” He laughed. “Megan’s birthdays are always eventful, aren’t they?”

“Tell me about it!" I said. He was so right.

“I missed her 21st,” He remarked. “I was in Wales, sure? Anything happen at that?”

“Oh,” I laughed. “Megan’s 21st was pretty eventful, yeah.”

“Why, what happened?” He asked. “Any fights?”

“No,” I said, as the memories of that night swam to the front of my mind. “The opposite, actually…”

The hall Steven had rented was absolutely full to the brim with people wishing Megan a happy 21st birthday. The party was in full swing, and there wasn’t a soul who wasn’t up dancing or socialising.

“So do you think my girls are having a good night?” Asked Steven, handing me a glass of champagne.

We both looked over at Megan and a three and a half year old Allie, who were dancing together in the middle of the floor.

“Definitely,” I replied, giving him a hug. “You’ve done a great job with this, Stevie. Megan is so happy.”

“Well that’s all that matters.” He smiled. “Scorpius sent her a card…said he’s sorry he can’t be here in person.”

“Right,” I said, awkwardly. I sipped my champagne, my hand shaking round the glass. “That was nice of him.”

“Yeah it was,” He agreed. “Rose you must miss him.”

I shook my head, frowning. “I haven’t thought about Scorpius Malfoy in a long time, Stevie. You know I’m with Mark and we’re doing really well.”

“You can say that,” He said. “You know I saw him, last month? Albus and me went up to visit?”

“Yeah, Megan told me,” I said quietly.

“It was like looking into a mirror of my sixteen year-old self.” He said bluntly.

“Meaning?”

Steven laughed. “Meaning when I was sixteen I was in love with Megan, and I missed her like you’d never believe because I’d messed things up between us. And Scorpius looked exactly the same way. He’s still crazy about you Rose, and he knows he’s made this is a big mistake and-”

Steven can you please drop this?” I interrupted. “Scorpius and I are over and that’s the way it’s going to stay. I don’t want to talk anymore about it.”

“Okay,” He said kindly. “But if you ever do want to talk about it I’m here. You may be my wife’s best friend and my daughter’s godmother, but you’re also my really good friend. Don’t forget that I’m here for you too.”

“Thanks,” I said.

He gave me a smile, and then walked away as Mark came to my side, wrapping his arm around my waist.

“Hi,” He said, kissing me. “Can I talk to you outside?”

“Of course,” I said, taking his hand as he led us out to the entrance of the hall.

“Okay it is November, in case you’d forgotten!” I laughed. “I’m freezing, what is it?”

“Sorry,” He smiled. He took out his wand and cast a heating charm over us.

 “Rose” He said, taking my hands. “I know we’ve only been together for less than a year but…I feel like I’ve found the love of my life.”

I smiled at him. “Me too,”

He nodded. “And so I’m doing something that I know is pretty mental. And I honestly believe nobody else could make me do this, but you do…”

I frowned as he slid down onto one knee and pulled out a little, red box.

“Mark…” I whispered.

“Rose Weasley,” He said shakily. “I will love you forever. Will you marry me?”

I took a deep breath as my heart hammered unsteadily in my chest.

Mark,” I said again. “This is really sudden…I don’t know if I’m ready to…”

I know it’s a shock,” He said. “Believe me, it is for me too. But I’ve never felt like this about anyone. And we could wait, but I know this is what I want. So I just feel like…what’s the point in waiting? Please Rose, marry me.”

I nodded, not taking the time to really consider what he was asking me to do. Just like the naïve, twenty-year old girl I was, I let my heart rule my head without really thinking anything through;

“Yes. I’ll marry you…”

“That was the night Mark proposed,” I shrugged, as Scorpius laughed.

“I had that one coming didn’t I?” He laughed again, shaking his head. “Should I be offended by the fact that you turned down my proposal and not his?”

“No,” I assured him, looping my arms around his neck and looking up at him. “That night I was so…young and immature. And I didn’t even really know what I wanted in my life. I was so in denial about my feelings for you, and I think Mark knew too. I think he thought if we got married I would be less likely to leave him for you.”

“Do you ever think about it?” He asked. “About how things might have been if I’d never come back? If you’d married Mark?”

“Not really,” I said honestly. “It’s quite hard to imagine really. Everything would be so different; I probably wouldn’t be pregnant, for one thing! But then I also wouldn’t have had the opportunity to live with Dom and get so close to her again…”

“And I would still be miserable and lonely in Cardiff,” Scorpius laughed. “And perhaps going out with Dom again.”

“Okay, the Scorpius and Dom jokes will never be funny!” I said, smacking him.

“Most importantly, our boy wouldn’t be coming in five months,” I said quietly. “And I wouldn’t want to be in that world.”

He grinned at me. “I really do love you too much, Weasley.”

*

“Okay, I think you’re honestly being ridiculous!” Exclaimed Dom. “Lest you forget I am actually doing this as a favour to you and your unborn son! You’d think you would help me pack!”


I flopped down onto her bed, resting my hand on my growing bump. Dominique was insisting that she start packing now, and although I was so grateful, and genuinely was excited at the thought of living with Scorpius again, I was also distraught that she was leaving.

She shook her head at me as she carefully motioned her wand in this and that direction, sending clothes neatly out of their drawers and into the cardboard boxes Megan had given her from the shop.

“I’m really going to miss you!” I complained. “We have so much fun Dom!”

“I know,” She said sadly, climbing up next to me on the bed. “But let’s be honest, you’re not going to have time for fun once little Dominic comes along anyway!”

“Funny!” I said, sarcastically. “And I’m not calling him Dominic!”

She laughed. “We’ll still be the same Rose and Dom…just not living together.”

“I know,” I admitted. “But it was just fun being young and careless and living with someone who…well really who’s become my best friend.”

“Nah, don’t say that!” She said. “Megan’s your best friend.”

“I love Megan,” I said. “And she’s my oldest friend. But you’re the girl I live with, who I see everyday, who I tell everything to. That’s a best friend, Dom. Besides you can both be my best friends.”

“I’m happy with that,” She smiled. “Now come on, let’s get packing fatty!”

“You are a total bitch,” I laughed. “And as soon as I’m not packing baby weight I will kick your arse Dominique Weasley!”

“Rose? Dom?” Called the voice of Albus from the lounge.

“Al?” I shouted back, jumping off the bed.

Dom frowned at me. “I didn’t even hear him apparate.”

“What is it Albus?” I said, as he burst into Dom’s room, looking out of breath and in shock.

As soon as he was close enough for me to see him clearly, I saw that there were tears in his eyes, and I knew something terrible had happened.

“Guys…” He whispered. “Nana Molly’s dead.”

 

 

*

 

A/N Reviews appreciated, even sad ones x
 
 


Chapter 32: All That Follows
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Can I just point out - chapter 32??? I cannot believe it! I only started this in March - thats 32 chapters in 8 months! Thats maths I can't even begin to cope with! Anyways, rambling over enjoy!


*

 

The kitchen of The Burrow was crammed with people as we entered, and yet the silence was deafening. Not a person spoke as we entered, Uncle Harry opening the door for us. I gave him a hug, tears streaming down my face.

Around the table sat the six original Weasleys; Bill, Charlie, Percy, George, Dad, and Ginny. Their faces were empty of anything besides devastation. I looked over at Mum, who was standing behind Dad’s chair, with her hand on his shoulder, her own shaking with grief.

And that’s when the choked sob escaped me. Somehow, when I broke my silence, I broke the others’ too. Their cries and sobs cut through me like a knife as Al wrapped his arms around Ginny, Dom flew to her Dad, and I made my way to my Mum and Dad.

“What happened?” I whispered to my Mum.

“She was sick,” Mum replied, barely audible. “Really sick, and she didn’t tell us. She didn’t tell anyone.

I clasped my hand to my mouth as Uncle Percy cried out, too loud and too piercing for anyone to bear. I bit my lip and left the room, in search of the rest of my cousins. I heard footsteps behind me and knew it would be Albus and Dominique who followed.

I opened the door to Granddad’s old study, and found them all sitting there, consoling one another; Victoire, Teddy, holding a sleeping Arthur, Louis, Molly, Lucy, Fred, Roxanne, James, and Lily.

The only one missing was Hugo, who was still on tour; it dawned on me that someone would have to write to him and tell him what had happened. I went over to the desk and pulled parchment and a quill out.

Hugo,

Nana Molly has passed away. We are all at The Burrow.

Rose

That was all I could write, and it still sent me into uncontrollable tears again. Barely able to hold the pen, I scribbled a note for Scorpius, so he would know where I was and tied them both to Fyfe, Nana Molly’s owl.

I then fell down into a seat beside James and put my head in my hands. I felt his hand rub my back consolingly, but it meant nothing.

What did I do now?

In the hours that followed, all we could do was sit there. Hugo came eventually, when it had gotten dark, and James embraced him tightly. I noticed that James was taking the role of the head of our generation; he was the oldest after Victoire, after all, who had taken Arthur home an hour previously.

James made sure everyone had eaten something, and held us as we cried, and looked after us all. It was heartbreaking to see him this way.

“I’m going into the kitchen,” He said, croakily. “To see if they need anything.”

“I’ll come with you,” I said, getting up. James nodded, and took my hand as we stepped out into the hallway.

“How are you doing Rosie?” He said quietly, before we went into the kitchen.

I bit my lip and nodded, fighting back the tears. James nodded too, giving me a big, protective hug that didn’t really seem to do anything.

She said she would always be there to babysit,” I cried. “And I can’t get those words out of my head James. She was so excited for me, and she couldn’t wait for my baby to be born and now she’ll never meet him! And he’ll never know her!”

“I don’t know what to say,” He said. “There’s nothing that can make it okay. We just have to try to be strong for them,” He whispered, motioning to the kitchen. “They need us more than we need them right now.”

I nodded, taking a minute to pull myself together, and then followed James into the kitchen. The scene hadn’t changed since we’d left, hours previously. There was a lingering feeling of cold in the normally warm kitchen, like all the life had left  it. I suppose it had, really.

“Hi,” I said quietly. “We just wanted to see if you needed anything.”

“You mean other than my Mum?” Asked Aunt Ginny tearfully. “No, there’s nothing else.”

Dad got up and gave me a hug, and Aunt Ginny shook her head.

“I’m sorry Rose; I didn’t mean to snap at you….”

“It’s fine,” I said. “Honestly don’t worry about it.”

“Can we get you anything?” Asked James. “Is there anything we can do?”

Uncle Bill, who had been sitting with his head in his hands at the top of the table, looked up and sighed.

“We have to make the appropriate…arrangements.” He said, quietly. “The funeral has to be organised.”

“Well if there’s anything we can do to help, just let us know,” Said James.

“We will son, thanks,” Said Harry, who looked older than I’d ever seen him. “Maybe you lot should get home and get some sleep…we’re all going to stay here tonight anyway, but you must be exhausted. We’ll start planning everything tomorrow.”

“Hugo and I will get home just now,” I said, nodding. “And we’ll be back in the morning.”

Between myself and James, we gathered up all the cousins, and made the difficult job of saying goodbye to all of our parents. I hugged and kissed each of them, before joining the rest outside. As soon as I got out into the cold, dark night, Dominique was at my side. It seemed everyone was discussing where they were staying. All I knew was that I would be going back to Mum and Dad’s with Hugo; I wouldn’t have him staying alone tonight. 

“Louis is staying with Victoire and Teddy,” She said quietly to me. “Do you mind if I come back with you and Hugo?”

“Of course,” I said, putting my arm around her. “There’s more than enough room.”

In the end, the three Potters decided to come back with us too; nobody wanted to be on their own.

Back at Mum and Dad’s, we all sat in the living room, clutching cups of tea, not really saying anything. Lily had been crying silently, but none of us tried to console her. James had gotten it right earlier; there was nothing to say.

I kept myself busy, refilling tea and offering food to anyone who was hungry enough to force something down. The baby was kicking like crazy, and I got the feeling he knew something was up, almost like he knew how much pain we were all in.

Eventually, Hugo, Lily, Dom and James all went up to bed, so that myself and Albus were the only ones left. I was in the kitchen, washing the dishes by hand rather than using magic, when he joined me carrying the remaining cups.

He dropped the cups into the sink and rubbed his bleary, bloodshot eyes. He looked exhausted.

“Albus, get some sleep.” I said. “You look terrible.”

“You must be serious, you called me Albus,” He said, smiling feebly.

“Exactly, so don’t mess with me,” I said, not feeling any of the forced humour. He nodded, kissed me on the cheek and left the kitchen. I waited until I heard his footsteps stop and the door closing, before finishing tidying the rest of the kitchen.

Rather than go upstairs to find a free bed, I simply lay out on the squashy, comfortable sofa in the living room, and tried for the escape sleep would surely give me.

Two hours later, at four in the morning, my eyes were still wide open. I sighed and got up, pulling the hooded cardigan I wore tightly around me, before grabbing my wand from the coffee table.

A split-second later, I was where I wanted to be; Scorpius’ bedroom, at his parents’ house twenty miles away.  

Scorpius was sleeping soundly, his face clear and free of the concern and tension that often occupied his perfect features when he was awake. I smiled down at him, trying to ignore the numbness inside me, and crawled into the bed beside him.

He put his arm around me instinctively in sleep, his breathing changing slightly. I knew he was about to wake up, and so I savoured those final few seconds where I didn’t have to talk about anything.

He moved slowly, taking deep, long breaths, before finally opening his eyes and frowning for a second.

“Rose,” He croaked sleepily.

“Hi,” I whispered, burying my head in his chest.

“I’m so sorry,” He said, running his hand through my hair and pressing his lips to the top of my head. “How is everyone?”

“A mess,” I replied, still barely in more than a whisper.

He nodded, and I knew he had nothing more to say for now.

“By the way,” I whispered. “Your son is just as much of a pain in the arse as you are,” I told him, placing his hand on my stomach so he could feel the kicks.

“Maybe he’s just letting you know he’s still there,” Scorpius said.

I nodded as the tears I’d been holding back spilled out now, and my shoulders began to shake. He cradled me in his arms, and although it wasn’t going to heal me, right now it was what I needed.

*

“You look nice,” Said Mum quietly. “Very smart.”

“Thanks,” I muttered, smoothing my black dress robes. “Is Dad still upstairs?”

She nodded, her face conflicted. She sat down at the kitchen table and I took the seat next to her.

“I don’t know how he’s going to cope with today,” She admitted. “He’s been so torn up for the last three days and I’m scared this will just send him over the edge. And it’s not even like his brothers or Ginny can talk to him because they’re all exactly the same!”

“You can talk to him,” I reminded her.

She sighed. “I know. But what do I say? I know what you’re going through? I would have a cheek to say that Rose because I don’t…I still have both my parents don’t I?”

I took her hand, trying to comfort her. She took a deep breath, trying to calm herself. I often wished I had even half of my Mum’s emotional strength; I was a wreck most of the time, always crying; Mum was so strong.

“Why didn’t she tell me?” I asked, desperately. “I could have helped her, there might have been a way to give her more time…why didn’t she just tell someone.”

“She was always the head of this family,” Said Mum, shrugging. “She wouldn’t have wanted to burden any of us with it.”

“She was wrong,” I said.

“I know,” Mum agreed, nodding. “I just wish she had realised that…Hi Hugo,” She said, as my brother entered the kitchen, dressed all in black like Mum and I. “Do you want something to eat?”

“No thanks,” He replied, sitting next to me.

“Hugo sweetheart, I know you’re going through a lot,” Said Mum. “But I think after today you should get back to the rest of the band.”

“What?” He asked. “Are you kidding?”

“This is your big chance!” She said. “And you have great things happening for you right now. I know your Nana wouldn’t want you to jeopardise that; she was so proud of you.”

“Don’t lie!” He exclaimed. “She thought I should be going into the Ministry, just like you, just like Dad – just like the whole family! Nana thought I was wasting my time with music and she was right!”

“That’s enough!”

We all whipped around. Dad was standing in the doorway, looking smart and respectful in his dress robes. His face was ghostly pale however, and there were thick, dark shadows under his eyes.

“Your Grandmother was proud of every single one of you!” He continued. “And I don’t want to hear anything to the contrary!”

Hugo sighed. “I was away all this time,” He whispered. “And I never even told her once how much she meant to me…”

“She knew,” I told him, taking his hand. “I promise you Hugo, she knew.”

The four of us remained in our kitchen for a further twenty minutes, in devastated silence, before Dad finally broke it.

“Let’s go.”

*

“Three weeks later it’s all just as raw as it was that day,” I said. “I just can’t imagine ever feeling better, you know?”

He nodded. “You will though. It seems impossible right now, but you will.”

I shrugged. “I hope you’re right.”

“How was the funeral? I’m really sorry I couldn’t make it, I was away on business for work and the timing just couldn’t work around it…”

“Oh it’s fine,” I insisted. “The funeral was…hard. But I guess it was a nice way to say goodbye? I don’t know,” I said, shrugging. “Is there really any way to feel about a funeral?”

“It is what it is,” He replied. “And I know it doesn’t really go for much but…I think you’re dealing with this really well, Rose. You always have. And I’m here for you, if you need me.”

“Thank you,” I said, sipping my coffee. “I know it can’t be easy for you, seeing me like this, knowing the direction my life has taken…”

“I won’t pretend I wasn’t surprised to see you pregnant!” He laughed. “But I’m happy to be here for you. If giving up my Monday and Thursday nights will help you even a little bit then I’m okay with that.”

“Yeah,” I smiled. “But I should get going.”

“I’m guessing Scorpius doesn’t know where you are tonight then? Or Dom?” He asked, as we got up and I put ten galleons in the bill.

I shook my head. “Not that he would be…annoyed. But its just easier to be still living with Dominique and not having to answer those questions quite so much. Dom and I just haven’t felt up to doing the move lately.”

He nodded. “I get it. So, Thursday?”

“If that’s okay,” I said. “I understand if you’ve had enough of me moaning and-”

“Its fine,” He said firmly. “Though I think we should be entitled to a discount at this café, considering how many times we’ve come in the last two weeks. Anyway, I’ll see you Rose.”

“Yeah see you. And thanks, Mark.”

*

 

A/N Thoughts?
 


Chapter 33: Sewn
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

Hey there! This one is not much happier than the last I'm afraid, but it is so crucial! Everything is fitting into place nicely now, I anticipate around another 6 to 8 chapters at the most :) Title inspired by The Feeling. Enjoy!

*

 

I let myself into the flat, yawning tiredly. The weather outside was crazy, and even now in the flat the wind outside battered against our thin walls and windows. I dumped my back on the hall table, looking forward to nothing more than getting into bed.

I sighed. That was going to be difficult, if the voices coming from the living room were anything to go by.

“Hi,” I said, joining Dom and Scorpius in the lounge. “I didn’t know you’d be here,” I said to Scorpius, kissing him on the cheek.

“Well we’re both a little concerned about you to be honest,” He said, taking my hand in a comforting way.

“Rose, what’s going on?” Asked Dom, looking worried.

I frowned. “I could ask the same thing! What are you two on about?”

“Do you think I haven’t noticed you disappearing all these days and nights since Nana died? Where are you going Rose?”

Scorpius watched me closely and I sighed. I hadn’t wanted to do this yet, and it was going to be hard.

“It’s nothing,” I said. “I’m just keeping busy.”

“Rose, we know how much you’re going through,” Said Scorpius. “And Dominique feels the same way. But we’re just worried for you…where have you been going? You shouldn’t be going through this alone.”

“I’m fine!” I exclaimed. “Honestly, you two need to stop worrying.”

“You’re pregnant,” Said Dom gently. “So your hormones are on overdrive, and I’m sure you must be feeling really sensitive and fragile right now and-”

“Oh for Christ sake!” I interrupted, running a hand through my hair fussily. “I’m not fucking hormonal! If you must know…I’ve been meeting Mark.”

“What?” Demanded Dom. “Mark? Mark Oliver?”

“Well how many other Marks do we know?” I replied sarcastically.

“Why have you been meeting him?” Asked Scorpius quietly. He was looking at me with an insecure look I rarely saw from him. It was unnerving.  

“Because he lost his Dad last year and he really understands how I’m feeling,” I admitted quietly. “I like talking to him…it helps.”

“Why can’t you talk to me?”

I shrugged. “I do talk to you Scorp! But I like talking to Mark; he’s been really good to me.”

Scorpius laughed bitterly. “Well that’s good of him. So how long has this been going on?”

“Don’t ask me that!” I exclaimed. “As if I’m cheating on you with him or something. It’s not some sordid affair Scorpius; I’m just talking to the guy.”

“The guy you nearly married!” He retorted.

“Well,” I said quietly. “You sure as hell saw to that one didn’t you?”

Scorpius got up from the sofa and strode over to the window, running his hands through his hair in anger. I caught sight of Dom getting up and leaving to go to her room. I didn’t blame her; she’d witnessed enough fights like this to know where it was headed.

“I’m with you, Scorpius. I’m in a relationship with you. I’m having a baby with you. I picked you! Why do you have to feel threatened because I’m still in contact with my ex? It didn’t seem to bother you when the shoe was on the other foot!”

“Meaning what?”

“Meaning when I was with Mark and you just came storming back into my life, you certainly didn’t make any attempt to keep things amicable for us, did you?”

“Why are you dragging all of this back up, Rose?” He demanded. “You need to get your head out of the past and start looking to our future!”

“Well that’s what I’ve been doing! All you had to say was okay, it’s nice that Mark’s helping you – but you didn’t!” I shouted. “Because you’re being insecure and jealous as usual!”

“I can’t help being paranoid about the fact that my girlfriend would rather go to her ex fiancé than come to me!”

“Scorpius,” I said, in barely more than a whisper. “My grandmother died. She’s dead. And I miss her every single day, so much more than I can explain. And I would have thought that if I was finding a way to cope with that, you would be happy for me. Not jealous!”

“It feels like you’re shutting me out,” He whispered. “Of everything; and this is like the final nail in the coffin.”

“Great choice of words there,” I said sarcastically.

“You know what I mean.”

I shrugged. “Well if that’s the case on you go. Walk out, Scorp, it’s what you do!”

“Rose!” He shouted. “Will you give me a bit of sincerity, for Christ’s sake?”

I looked into his beautiful, stormy eyes and felt the walls I’d put up against him tumble down again. I slid down onto the sofa, and blinked away a tear.

“Why is this so hard for us?” I whispered. “We’re having a baby, and we can’t stop fighting!”

He came and sat down next to me, taking my hand.

“Maybe…we should just focus on the baby for a while,” I said shakily. “Because I can’t cope with this stress on top of everything else.”

“I don’t want that.” He said.

I shook my head. “I don’t want it either. But I want it more than I want this.”

*

“So what? You’ve split up?”

“No. Yes! Maybe…” I said, sighing. “I don’t know. What I do know is that I can’t do all that fighting just now, it’s too much.”

“Hmm,” Said Mum, scanning the rows of prams in the bright, spacious baby shop.

I frowned. My Mum honestly said “hmm” way too many times for me to be okay with it. Particularly considering she always did it when I was telling her about my less than successful life.

“Hmm,” I agreed, shaking my head.

“Look, you’ll work it out,” She said. “This is normal; you’re young, you’re expecting a baby….it will be fine. I mean it’s been what? Five days since this happened?”

“Yeah,” I said, gently pushing a large, cream pram back and forth on the spot. “And I already miss him like crazy.”

“But you’ve spoken?”

“Everyday,” I said at once. “But its different…it’s awkward. Neither of us even wanted this!”

She rubbed my arm consolingly. “He may make you crazy Rose, but he’s the one for you. We all know it. Have you seen Mark at all since?”

“Once,” I said quietly. “But when I told him what had happened between Scorpius and me he said we shouldn’t meet anymore…he’s such a good guy.”

Mum laughed. “Shame he’s not the one you love!”

“Yeah,” I smiled. “How’s Dad?”

Her face fell slightly. “He’s getting there,” She said, shrugging. “It’ll just take some time.”

“I suppose,” I said. “Anyway I think I’m set on this one,” I told her motioning to the large, cream pram with delicate sand-coloured detailing.

“I’ll get it,” She said, catching the eye of the sales assistant.

“Mum no!” I insisted. “I can get it myself; Scorpius and I have been saving for things like this!”

“I think I am perfectly within my rights to buy my first grandchild’s pram Rose, so don’t fight me on this one. I will buy the pram and you can go and sort things out with that boy of yours.”

I sighed. “I wish it were that simple.”

I was in a rush as I left the shop, as I was going to pick up Allie; however I managed to spare ten minutes to drop in on Scorpius before doing so. He answered the door looking somewhat bleak.

“Hi,” I said, managing a smile.

“Hey, come on in.”

“I’m not stopping,” I said, shaking my head. “I’m taking Allie overnight, so Megan and Steven can go out for his birthday, remember?”

“Oh yeah, right,” He said, looking tired.

“Anyway, I just dropped round to remind you about my anti-natal class tomorrow morning. I know things are…weird with us but I thought you would still want to come.”

“Oh, no absolutely.” He said. “Nine thirty, yeah? I’ll be there.”

“Great,” I smiled. “Well I’ll see you at St Mungo’s then?”

“Yeah, see you then.” He said quietly. He looked at me wistfully, and I felt an ache inside. This was all wrong, and we both knew it. But we couldn’t just keep running back into each other’s arms and ignoring the problems; not anymore.

“And we should probably talk, afterwards.” I added, in a low voice.

“Yeah, we should talk, about…well this,” He said, smiling in spite of the situation. I nodded, smiling back sadly.

“We’ll sort this out Scorp.” I said, hopefully. “We will.”

“I hope you’re right,” He replied.

I took a small step forward and gave him a long, comforting hug. We held each other for a few seconds like that, before breaking slightly.

“Well I should go,” I said, before hesitantly kissing him lightly on the lips. “See you tomorrow.”

He nodded, my hand still held in his. “See you then,” He said, letting go.

*

“I can feel it!” Squealed Allie in excitement. “He’s kicking, he’s really kicking!”

“Cool, isn’t it?” I said, grinning.

“Very,” She agreed, flopping back down onto the sofa beside me. “My Mum says you and Scorfias are fighting, is that true?”

“When did she say that?” I muttered.

“I heard her telling Daddy,” She admitted, grinning. “Why did you fight with Scorfias?”

I sighed. “Because Scorfias has trust issues that can no longer be ignored.”

“I don’t know what that means,” She said, shrugging her skinny shoulders.

I laughed, and stroked her hair. “I hope you never do baby girl. So we’ve had pizza, films, popcorn – how are you enjoying your sleepover?”

“Yeah,” She said at once. “But…I sort of want to do something really fun. Like something I’m not normally allowed to do.”

“Like what?”

“I don’t know,” She said. “Just something really fun.”

“Really fun and something you’re not allowed to do at home,” I said, thinking. “Okay, I think I have a pretty good idea. Follow me!”

“I used to do this with my brother when we were kids,” I said, as she clutched my hand tightly.

“Didn’t you get into trouble?” she asked, as we bounced up and down.

“Well yeah, but that made it even more fun,” I laughed. “We would try and jump as quickly and as high as possible, because we knew in a few minutes my Mum would be up shouting at us about breaking the bed springs.”

“This is really fun, Aunt Rose!” She giggled, losing her balance slightly and laughing adorably.

I had to agree. Jumping on the bed never lost its appeal, even if it was somewhat more difficult than it was when I was fifteen years younger and god knows how many pounds lighter.

“Okay,” I gasped flopping down onto the mattress. “Bouncing with twice the weight really takes it out of you!”

Allie flopped down beside me and curled up by my side. I stroked her soft hair, sighing, wishing everything else was as easy as entertaining Allie.

“Are you looking forward to having a baby?” She asked me.

“I think so,” I replied. “But I’m a little scared…I’m not sure if I’ll be a good Mum.”

“You will be,” She said surely. “You’re my Godmother and you’re good at that. And if I didn’t have my Mummy, then I would want you to be my Mum instead. You’re my second-best after Mummy.”

“And your Dad,” I reminded her. “But thanks Allie.”

“I’m home!” Called the voice of Dom.

“In my room,” I shouted back.

“Auntie Dom, we were jumping on the bed it was so much fun!” Exclaimed Allie as soon as Dominique entered the room.

Dom laughed. “Well that sounds cool,” She said. “Scoot over.”

“So how was Max?” I asked, as Dom lay out on Allie’s other side.

“Good,” She said, with a slight frown on her face. “I’m just not sure about him though…he seems too good; I’m kind of hesitant to let him in.”

“Hesitant to let him in….” I said “Well Dominique Weasley there’s a first time for everything!”

Her eyes widened and she aimed a kick at me. “Excuse me! That’s not what I meant thank you! And you can talk, Mum-to-be!”

“What are you talking about?” Murmured Allie in a heavy, sleepy voice, with her eyes closed.

“Nothing,” Whispered Dom. “We’ll explain when you’re older.”

“So,” I said, eating a spoonful of ice cream, once Allie was out for the count and we had went back into the living room. “What did you mean?”

She sighed. “I suppose I’m just aware of how much a guy can hurt you, and I’m a little afraid of that. But I really like Max.”

“You can’t go through life being scared to live it, Dom.” I said, shaking my head. “Give him a chance, he might surprise you.”

She shrugged. “I could say the same thing to you…Rose, what is this between you and Scorp? It’s crazy!”

I shook my head. “I don’t even know. I could say we broke up because we were always fighting but I don’t even know if that’s the case anymore. Part of me thinks we were only still together because of the baby, and then I think that it’s the baby that’s made us this way! It’s so confusing.”

“Confusing, apart from that fact that you love each other.” She said quietly.

“You know I went round there today, to remind him about my class tomorrow? And I was just saying goodbye and I hugged him…and then I kissed him, because it just came to me so naturally, I didn’t even think about it. And it wasn’t awkward or anything like that, it was just normal.”

Dom laughed. “Well, as we all know, a kiss in Rose and Scorpius world is like a hello in the real world. I just don’t get what’s stopping you!”

“Before,” I whispered. “It was so easy to just fall in and out of love with him the way I fell in and out of bed with him! And that would probably still be the case, if it weren’t for this little guy,” I said, motioning to my belly. “Now, I need to be an adult, Dom. I can’t just run into Scorp’s arms because I love him; I have to make every single decision based on what’s right for the baby.”

“Well that is very mature of you,” Said Dom, raising her ice-cream spoon to me. “I must say you’ve come a very long way Rose Weasley. And I for one think that kid will be the making of the pair of you.”

I smiled. “I think so too. But I'm seeing him tommorow at this anti-natal class, and we're going to talk afterwards. I'm feeling quite good about it actually, if I can tell him how I feel about everything hopefully we can get back on track!"

Dom smiled. "That would definately be a good thing. You'll sort this out, Rose. It's just a minor bump along the road to your happy ending."

I grinned, digging out another spoon of cookie-dough. "I'll eat to that." 

*

“What’s the time?” I asked, looking around frantically.

“Two seconds since you last asked,” Said Dom, sympathetically. “Rose it’s after half past, I don’t think he’s coming. Come on, let’s just go in.”

I scanned the busy street outside St Mungo’s once more, before nodding reluctantly, and following Dominique into the entrance to the Maternity Unit where the class was being held.

Dominique tried to make the class as fun and interesting as possible for me, and we did have a laugh pretending to be giving birth and practising breathing exercises. I felt slightly as if we were sixteen again, sitting up the back of the class, getting thrown daggers from the teacher.

At the end of the class, Dom gave me a quick hug before rushing off to Gringotts for work. Today was the last of my days off before I went back onto my shifts tomorrow, and I had originally planned to go home and relax.

But my plans had changed.

I stormed into the Aurors Office like a woman possessed, slamming doors and shoving passed people angrily.

“Rose?” Exclaimed Uncle Harry, who had just entered the department carrying a pile of papers. “What’s going on?”

“Nothing.” I said. “Is Scorpius here?”

Harry sighed, and motioned to the desks at the window. I looked round and saw him sitting, stretched out in his chair, laughing with a colleague. I forced a smile for Uncle Harry, before stomping over to him and throwing the leaflet about childbirth onto his desk furiously.

“Rose-”

“Who the hell do you think you are?” I shouted.

“Hang on a minute Rose I-”

“Where were you?” I demanded, taking no notice of the half a dozen staring Aurors around us. Not to mention my Uncle, who was now standing by my side looking at Scorpius expectantly.

“The anti-natal class,” He said, shaking his head. “Rose I’m so sorry I completely forgot.”

“Bullshit,” I said. “I reminded you last night Scorpius.”

“I just blanked, I’m sorry!”

I shook my head and spoke in a shaky voice. “Great. That’s fine then. If you honestly think that’s a good enough excuse, and that you can get away with stuff like this then you are sadly mistaken.”

“Rose-”

“You missed my class!” I said, with tears in my eyes. “And we were supposed to talk after and sort everything out; I thought you wanted to…” I shook my head, breathing deeply.

“It’s not even about that!” I continued, changing the subject. “All I asked was that you come with me to the class, and you couldn’t even do it for me. So Scorpius, if you can’t be there for everything, I don’t want you there for anything.”

“What are you talking about?” He asked firmly.

“You heard,” I said. “You can consider yourself off the hook. I don’t need you and I certainly don’t want you.”

 


 

*

A/N Thoughts?? (dodges bullets and/or knives)


 


Chapter 34: Hometown Glory
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Two chapters in two days! Don't say I'm not good to you! Title inspired by Adele. Enjoy!

*

“I would like to propose a toast,” said James.

I laughed, rolling my eyes. James was drunk after three drinks, probably due to the fact that he was a complete lightweight. If I wasn’t pregnant I would be showing him how it was done right now.

“No, James, no toast!” Objected Lily.

“You be quiet,” He said, pointing at her. “This is the first time we’ve let you come, keep your opinions to yourself!”

“Well,” I muttered to Albus, who was sitting next to me, “It wouldn’t be Christmas Eve without a Potter brawl.”

Al laughed, shaking his head at his siblings.

Christmas Eve had become a bit of a tradition for us in recent years; every year, all of the cousins would go out for a meal and drinks together, with a strict no parent and no boyfriend/girlfriend rule. It was always something to look forward to, as we were rarely all together. And the fact that Lily and Hugo could join us now that they were legally allowed to drink made it even better.

“I can’t believe you haven’t let us come before now,” Said Hugo, who sat on my other side. “I mean I’m touring in a band, Rose! This is pretty tame!”

“Regardless, up until now you were underage,” Said Al. “We know the rules. I wasn’t about to go up against my Mum and Aunt Hermione to allow you two to come.

“As if you lot ever set such a great example about underage drinking!” He scoffed.

“Excuse me!” I said. “I did not drink before I was eighteen!”

Albus raised his eyebrows at me and I grinned. “Well not much.”

“I still haven’t done my toast!” Exclaimed James, who had insisted he sit at the top of the table, even though it was always Victoire, being the oldest, who sat at the head.

“Let him talk,” said Fred, who seemed to be listening to James intently.

James smiled at his best friend, and then looked back to us all.

“Okay, I would like to propose a toast to us, here on Christmas Eve. We all know it’s been an eventful year, and it will forever be remembered as the one in which we lost Nana. But it’s also been as great one. We’ve welcomed the next two members of our generation into the mix; Arthur and Emma. And we are all eagerly awaiting the next arrival,” He said, raising his glass to me.

“To us, and to Nana Molly,” He called, and we all repeated it, raising our glasses to his toast. It had been quite nice, actually.

“Albus,” I said, half an hour later, while everyone was getting out of their seats to talk to each other.  “Why aren’t you drinking?”

“Thought I’d keep you company,” He said, shrugging. “And before you say it, I know I didn’t need to do it, but I wanted to.”

“Thank you,” I said. “So how’s it going with Frankie?”

“Amazing,” He said, lighting up a the mention of her name. “I can’t tell you how much I love her Rosie. We’re moving in together after Christmas.” 

 “Oh,” I said quietly. “That’s amazing!”

Al’s face fell slightly, and he sighed. “I’m sorry Rose. I know you and Scorp were supposed to be doing that…”

“It’s fine,” I insisted. “I’m fine.”

Albus laughed. “Do you remember when you and Scorpius split up when you were in sixth year?”

“Which time?” I smiled. “It happened a lot.”

“When I came to talk to you about it,” He prompted.

I sighed. “How could I forget?” That conversation had changed my life in some ways…

“You look miles away” commented Al, stretching back in the chair. 

“I was,” I admitted ruefully, kicking his feet off the small table littered with my books and notes. 

“So how are you?” he asked. 

“Fine” I said, looking at my essay. That was always my response. What was the point in depressing everyone else with my problems?

Fine” said Al, laughing. “Sure you are, Rosie. I’ve got to tell you, it’s not easy.”

“What isn’t?” 

“Being caught in the middle of it. My best friend is depressed, my cousin is depressed, and the best part is the reason for it is each other.”

I shrugged. “Sorry to inconvenience you.” 

He laughed again. “Don’t apologise to me. I’m happy Rose, I have Beth, I have you, I have Scorpius, however dull the pair of you might be these days, I have Lily, I even have
James.” 

I frowned. “I have family and friends too you know Albus.”


“I know,” he said, smiling. “And yet, as soon as you don’t have Scorpius, you go like this on us.”

“Like what?” I demanded, defensively. 


“You hardly talk Rose! It’s like your mind is just elsewhere. And don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying to upset you; I don’t mean to be a prick. All I’m saying is, if you two can make each other this messed up, does is not tell you something? If you ask me, the only way the pair of you can be is together.”

“Scorpius and I made a decision not to be together, Albus.” I said quietly. 

“Yeah you did,” he said, getting up. “And look how well that’s working out for you.”


Albus smiled at me. “And here I was thinking I’d made all the difference in the world. Look, I’m not going to tell you those things again, because the truth is I’m sure you already know it. Just do what you think is right, Rosie, and we’ll support you.”

“Thanks Al,” I said. “I know its hard for you to understand, because you and him are best friends…but it just has to be this way for a while.”

By the time it hit one in the morning, we had all wished each other a Merry Christmas, paid the bill, and were starting to get off home, having had a great night.

“Can I crash at yours?” Asked Al. “I can’t be bothered disapparating back out of the city.”

“Sure,” I said. “Dom’s going to stay at Max’s flat anyway.”

We decided to walk the short distance back to mine and Dom’s flat, rather than dissaparate. Albus was wishing for snow the whole way, reminiscing about everything; the old days, Hogwarts, Beth, Scorpius…

As soon as we were in my building, I knew we weren’t alone. I gave Albus a worried glance, before he moved in front of me and slowly approached the stairs, with his wand in his hand.

I crept up behind him, with my own wand raised. As we neared my front door, I heard the sound of glass rolling along stone.

“For Christ’s sake,” Muttered Al.

“What is it?” I asked, pushing past him. I sighed, shaking my head.

“You’re drunk,” I said, angrily.

“And you’re pregnant,” He slurred, standing up shakily. “And we’re apart.”

“Scorpius, what are you doing here, like this man?” Asked Al, catching his friend before he staggered to the ground. “You’re a mess.”

 “Just wanted to wish the girl I love a Merry Christmas. And the bloke I love.”

Albus looked at me desperately, and I grabbed my keys out of my bag, shaking with anger. I let the three of us into the flat, and Albus aided Scorpius into the lounge and onto my sofa.

“Here we are the three musketeers!” He exclaimed. “On Christmas day!”

I ignored him, getting a spare blanket out of the cupboard and throwing it at him roughly. “Sleep it off, Scorpius.”

“Rose!” He called. “Wait, come here!”

I threw him a furious look before going into my bedroom and slamming the door behind me. I really was getting out of control with the stomping around, door slamming these days. Dominique had told me yesterday I should be attending anger-management sessions, but I assured her it was just the pregnancy. I hoped.

I changed into my pyjamas, and sat down on the bed, staring into the mirror across from me. My face was flushed with anger, and my eyes were red and moist. I sighed, if I could have sold the tears Scorpius Malfoy had caused me I would have been a millionaire long ago.

There was a light knock at the door, followed by it opening. Albus smiled kindly at me, perching on the edge of the bed.

“He’s out cold,” He said quietly. “You must be really pissed off.”

“Just a little,” I smiled. “It’s a good thing you were here; I would have just left him out there.”

“No you wouldn’t.”

“I know,” I said, sighing.

“I’m going to get to bed,” He said, kissing me on the cheek. “Merry Christmas Rose.”

I nodded. “Merry Christmas Albus.”          

*

I opened my eyes slowly, frowning at the bright light streaming in through the blinds of my bedroom windows. I got out of bed and went over to pull them up, raising my eyebrows at the sight of a snow-covered central London. Albus had got his wish for a white Christmas.

I pulled on my dressing gown, yawning. I glanced at my clock, and saw it was only seven thirty.

“Happy Christmas son,” I said, looking down at my bump. “It’s your first…and your Dad and I have really made a mess of things.”

I crept out of my room into the living room, where Scorpius was still lying motionless, the blanket tight around him, his chest rising and falling slowly. I had always thought that if I could have been in a relationship with Scorpius when he was asleep, things would have been a lot easier. Scorpius was perfect in sleep.

I sat on the arm of the couch, and stroked his hair instinctively. His eyes fluttered slightly at my touch, but he didn’t wake.

“We’re supposed to spend today together,” I whispered. “This is all so wrong, Scorpius.”

“I’m sorry,” He murmured, his eyes opening slowly.

“I know,” I replied, still in a whisper.

“For everything,” He continued. “I’m sorry I forgot about the class, and I’m sorry I freaked out over you and Mark, and I’m sorry I got drunk last night…I’m just sorry.”

“It’s just who you are,” I said. “And I shouldn’t be trying to make you into someone else. You told me at the wedding that this wouldn’t be easy and that you would piss me off most of the time, I just didn’t believe you.”

“Can’t we just pretend none of this happened?” He asked, sitting up straighter, and taking my hands.

“I don’t think so,” I said sadly.

He sighed, still holding my hands. He pulled one away and delved into his jeans pocket for a second, before pulling out a rectangular box.

“I came last night to give you your present,” He said. “Getting drunk wasn’t exactly part of the plan, sorry. Merry Christmas.”

I took it from him and opened the box to reveal a delicate, white gold necklace with a small diamond set into it.

“I know we’re supposed to be saving,” He said. “But I wanted to get you something special…I got it before all of this.”

“It’s beautiful,” I said. “Thank you. I actually have a present for you too, come on, I’ll get it.”

He followed me into my room and I lifted the small, neatly wrapped gift from my dressing table.

“Happy Christmas.” I shrugged, handing it to him.

He opened the watch, smiling down at it. “I love it Rose. Thanks.”

He took a step forward and placed his arms around me lightly. I hugged him back, feeling as if I could pretend that we were the normal Rose and Scorpius, that everything was fine, just for this second.

Without thinking, I pressed my lips to his for what should have been a split-second. But he returned the kiss, with more force, more passion. Scorpius kissed me back, and I let him.

I completely allowed my mind to leave me as he pulled us gently onto my bed, his kisses lingering on my lips, my neck, my collarbone. In the same second, my dressing gown was gone, and I didn’t think as my hands reached for his shirt, pulling it away effortlessly.

He removed my clothes naturally, and everything about what followed was completely natural and instinctive to us. Like breathing. It felt as though we were in our own little world, absent from all the problems, all the fighting. All I could see was him, and all I could feel was his bare, warm skin on mine, my hands on his chest, his tangling in my hair. I was so consumed by him; I barely noticed the tears in my eyes or the frown of his brow throughout.

Afterwards, we lay together silently, neither knowing what to say, it felt almost as if we had done something wrong now.

“I should go,” He said quietly. “My parents will be expecting me.”

I nodded, biting my lip. He placed his hand on my shoulder, and kissed my forehead gently. I closed my eyes at his touch, confused and upset and in love.

“I wish it weren’t the case,” He whispered. “But I’m guessing this doesn’t change anything?”

I shook my head. “Merry Christmas, Scorpius.”

*

“Of course it’s going to be hard, it will be, but having all the family together will make this day a little bit less difficult,” said Aunt Ginny, sending servings of turkey onto each of the many plates.

Christmas Day had always been held at The Burrow, but this year nobody felt okay about that. My Dad, Uncles and Aunt Ginny still hadn’t decided what to do with The Burrow yet; on the one hand nobody could face the idea of selling it, but on the flip side, it was just lying empty now.

So instead, we were having Christmas lunch at the Potters’. Aunt Fleur had helped Ginny with the cooking while Mum watched from a safe distance, having been forbidden to touch any of the food, due to her culinary challenges.

“Yeah,” I agreed. “Do you need anymore help?”

“No its fine, go and talk to your cousins,” She said. “And Rose, I should warn you, there’s a chance Scorpius will pop round at some point today, I invited him before you two had your fight so…”

“Oh it’s fine,” I said, awkwardly. “Thanks for letting me know.”

I went up to Al’s room, where I knew I would find him, James, and Dom; the three people I needed to talk to. They had gone up ten minutes previously to see the new state of the art broomstick Harry and Ginny had given Albus for Christmas this morning.

“Hi,” I said, joining them.

“You up to admire this little bad boy?” Asked Al, brandishing his Nimbus 3000.

“Not really,” I laughed. “Scorpius might be coming over.”

“We can ask him to leave,” Said James at once. “I don’t want you feeling uncomfortable Rosie.”

“Well it will be uncomfortable,” I said. “But not because we broke up. I…I had sex with him this morning.”

It was odd, the way I was so capable of being completely honest with these three people. But we were a very non-judgemental group of cousins. And James and Al had long since given up the idea that their little cousin might still be a virgin somehow, you know what with the baby and all.

“What?” Exclaimed Dom, grinning. “Rose that is huge!”

“I bet that’s what she told him,” Laughed Al. I raised my eyebrows and he shrugged, grinning. “Okay, what do you want me to say? I’m not surprised.”

“Me neither,” said James.

“Nor me,” Admitted Dom.

I sighed. “I’m not surprised either! This is just so bloody ridiculous! I break up with him because I’m a ridiculous hormonal wreck, then I try to get back together with him and he doesn’t show, then I properly split up with him, and then I have sex with him!”

“On Christmas day,” Added James. “You couldn’t make it up.”

“What should I do?” I asked them desperately.

“I don’t know Rose…this one is genuinely beyond me.” Said Dom. “But I think we all know the one person who will know exactly what you should do.”

“But it’s Christmas Day!” I said.

“I don’t think you’ll be missed for half an hour!” Laughed James. “If anyone notices you’re gone I’ll just strip or something.”

I laughed. The thing is, he was serious.

Ignoring the snow, I sneaked out of the Potters’ massive grounds and disapparated in a second. They were surprised, but happy to see me.

It was absolute carnage in the Bryce-Finnegan household. Allie was like…well a child on Christmas morning. Steven was frantically running after her, trying to pick up all the wrapping paper she left behind her, like the destruction after a hurricane. I barely got a Merry Christmas out of her before she resumed devouring the mountain of presents Stevie and Megan had got her. Or should I say Santa.

“I’m sorry, I know you must have plans,” I said, as Megan poured me a coffee in her kitchen.

“We’re heading to my Mum and Dad’s in an hour, so you’re fine.” She said, sitting beside me and sipping her own coffee. “So look at this,” She said, with a grin. “This time six years ago it was me pregnant on Christmas Day, and now? Voila!”

I smiled. “It is weird how it’s worked out. Look Megs I won’t keep you long…I just need a little bit of best friend advice.”

“What is it?” She asked at once.

“I sort of had sex with Scorpius this morning,” I said quietly.

“Oh,” she said, with a surprised laugh. “How did you even end up with him this morning?”

“He was waiting, drunk, up on my doorstep when I got in at half one! So Albus carried him in and I left him on the couch to sleep it off.”

“And obviously he didn’t stay on the couch!” she exclaimed. “You had sex with drunk Scorpius?”

“No,” I said. “It was this morning…I got to talking with him about everything, and he apologised, and then we gave each other our gifts and it was just all so sad. And then he hugged me, and I kissed him for like, a second! But he kissed me back and one thing led to another…”

“As they always do with you two,” She laughed. “And now you don’t know what to do?”

I nodded.

“And you want me to tell you what to do?”

I nodded again.

“Hell no!” She laughed. “Rose the only person who can decide this one is you, my psychotic best friend! Nobody can tell you what you should do! But lets look at the facts; you love the guy, have done for the past what? Seven years? You gave up your potential dream husband for him, you’ve forgiven him for everything he’s ever done no matter what. He was in a car crash and you didn’t leave his side until he woke up. And what’s that other thing? Oh yeah you’re having his child in four months!”

I sighed. “It is pretty obvious, in theory, I know! But there are so many complications!”

“Like what?” She demanded in frustration. “He forgot to come to the fucking anti-natal class, fine! Rose everyone makes mistakes!”

“Don’t swear at me Bryce.” I said, smiling.

“Don’t piss me of Weasley,” She replied. She got up and hugged me tightly. “He’s Scorpius,” she whispered in my ear. “He’s your Scorpius. The rest doesn’t matter.”

“Okay?” She demanded.

“Okay,” I nodded.

“Good. Now piss off out of my house!”

*

“Rose, where have you been?” Asked Mum.

“Oh, I just needed some air,” I lied smoothly. Lying to my Mum had always been pretty easy.

“Well, good. Lunch will be out in a second.” She said, shaking her head.

Dominique rushed over to me. “Did you talk to her?” She whispered, pulling me to one side.

“Yeah,” I nodded. “I talked to Megan.”

“So? What are you going to do?!”

“Um, Rose,” said James, pointing to the window of the conservatory. I sighed. Scorpius Malfoy was walking up the snowy path to the Potters’ front door, displaying his shit timing as always.

“Well?” Whispered Dom, as we watched him. “What’s it going to be?”

*

 


A/N :) ???


 


Chapter 35: A Message
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N It's always sad when a story is reaching its end, but this one is really making me emotional! I am guesstimating about three to four more chapters maximum guys, and that really is the ultimate maximum. So sad. In the meantime, title inspired by Coldplay. Enjoy!

*

 

They say that destiny will find us all, and that everything happens for a reason. They say that what we do in this life will carry on to the next. They say that no reasoning and bargaining can overcome what has already been set out for us; the path we will take has already been laid.

I tend to disagree. Me, I believe that life is what you make it. You win some you lose some and all that. If you want something, you go and get it, and to hell with anyone who tries to stop you.

I was no longer just fighting for the girl I was madly in love with anymore; now it was far more than that. Now it was for my unborn son. I doubted myself quite a bit on that one…I mean if I was half as bad at being a Dad as I’d become at being a boyfriend, then my son was going to have a pretty shit father. But I was determined not to let that happen.

Same as I was determined not to let Rose slip away again. I couldn’t quit her again, the last time I’d tried it nearly killed me.

“Well, isn’t this nice?” Said Mum, as we sat around the table. “All the family together.”

“Yeah Mum,” I muttered, while Dad, Gran and Granddad agreed.

“So Scorpius, how is Rose getting on?” Asked Gran cheerfully. “She must be far along now, eh?”

I nodded. “Over five months,” I said. “She’s fine Gran.”

My grandparents were great; on my Mum’s side that was. I had never known my Grandfather Lucius, he had died in Azkaban, and Dad really didn’t like to talk about him. All I knew about him was that he’d been a Death Eater, one of the worst. And he was the reason everyone hated the Malfoys. I had loved my Grandma Narcissa though, she was amazing, and it hit me pretty hard when she died a few years back.

“It’s a boy, isn’t it?” Asked Granddad. “I can’t believe I’m going to have a great-grandson! Though I bet the thought of being a Granddad scares you Draco!”

Dad smirked. “You know me, Rob. Far too young and handsome to be considered a Granddad. I’ll just be the baby’s favourite babysitter until I’m going grey.”

We all laughed. I knew Dad was just mucking about, he would absolutely love being a Granddad.

Okay, so I hadn’t exactly been honest with my family about Rose. They didn’t know that she had basically given me the red card and told me to piss off for good. But then they also didn’t know that we had sex this morning…she said it didn’t change anything, but surely it meant something?

“Will Rose be coming round?” Asked Mum. “We’ve got plenty left over from lunch if she wants anything.”

“She’s staying at the Potters today,” I told her. “Obviously they’ve just lost their grandmother, so they’re all spending today together.”

“That was awful news,” Said Grandma Betsy. “Such a tragedy. Molly Weasley was a great woman.”

“She was brave,” Said Dad, quietly. “Molly Weasley was brave.”

I looked down at my turkey awkwardly. It was at times like these when I wished I was from a normal family. You know, nice, regular parents who didn’t used to be Death Eaters sharing a residence with Voldemort during their late teens.

“Yeah well,” I said, changing the subject. “It’s perhaps best if I stay out of Ron Weasley’s way today…he won’t be exactly happy and I’ll just aggravate it.

Mum frowned. “I thought you said he’d accepted you?”

“He has,” I said hastily. “But I know that they’ve all been really sensitive just now…trust me, I know him. It’s just best if I stay out of his way.”

“One of these days that family will have to get used to the idea of you being around, even when things aren’t going well,” Said Dad. “It’s Christmas Day, are you really going to let it pass without seeing Rose?”

“I saw her this morning, actually, so it’s fine.” I assured them.

“Scorpius, what’s going on with you two?” asked Mum. “In fact, don’t answer that. If there’s a problem, go and fix it. I mean it. That girl is your whole world.”

“It’s not that simple,” I said, shaking my head. I hated discussing my relationship with Rose with my family. I always had the feeling they just didn’t get it.

“It never is!” Shrugged Dad. “But what are you going to do? Just give up when things are a little bit difficult? You did that once before son, and we saw how well it worked out for you.”

“Thanks Dad,” I said, sarcastically.

He sighed. “What I mean is that you can’t just lie back and take it when things are hard. The truth is being in love is hard a lot of the time, but it’s worth it for when it’s great. Go and remind Rose Weasley why she was never able to give up on you Scorpius. Get her back.”

I frowned at me father. This was bizarre and yet undeniable. My dad had just given me decent advice about my love life. My love life which, with the exception of my days as a pre-redhead obsessed teenager, had always been one girl; Rose. And although he never challenged it, my Dad had also never outright encouraged it.

“Are you drunk?” I muttered.

“No, I’m your father,” He smiled. “And I’d rather you didn’t move to Wales for another three years. So go and sort things out with Rose, we’ll be here.”

*

“Rose? You haven’t spoken in seventeen minutes babe, I’m going crazy.”

I sighed, frowning at him. Why was the so impossible?

“You want my honest answer?” I asked. He nodded. “I don’t know!” I exclaimed, shrugging. “I seriously do not know Scorpius!”

“Great,” He laughed.

“I’m not joking,” I muttered. “You are just such an arsehole the majority of the time Scorpius! It’s infuriating, because I know that for a couple of rare seconds you can be a really great guy; why can’t you be him all the time?”

“Because then I wouldn’t be me!” He said, shaking his head. “I’m not going to change!”

“I know,” I said quietly. “And I shouldn’t expect you to.”

He crossed the floor and sat next to me on Al’s bed, taking my hands.

“Look Rose, my Dad said that being in love was hard most of the time…but it’s worth it for when it’s great – and that’s like us isn’t it? We make each other crazy and we shout at each other and hurt each other, but for those times when it’s so amazing, neither of us even regret the bad times.”

I nodded. He was right. Of course. It was annoying how often that boy seemed to be getting things right these days.

“Look,” I said. “I know I have a lot to answer for here. I’ve been the crazy hormonal bitch, and it’s really annoying because when I first found out I was pregnant I swore I wouldn’t turn into her. But you’ve played your part too…I just feel like you don’t trust me, Scorp.”

“I do,” He insisted. “I trust you.”

“Then why did you go mental when you found out about Mark?” I asked, smiling. “And don’t say you didn’t because you’d be lying.”

“Mark is a weak point for me,” He said darkly. “Rose…don’t look at me like that! How would you like it if I almost got married to someone; like literally at the altar! And then we got together and you had to put up with me being friends with the girl? You wouldn’t like it.”

“Scorpius!” I exclaimed, in frustration. “Don’t you get it? That’s what Mark had to do the whole time leading up to our wedding? And he had five years to contend with!”

“Yeah but he also never loved you as much as I did,” Scorpius reminded me.

I got up and walked over to the window, watching all of my cousins having a snowball fight in the Potters’ garden.

“You’re probably right,” I said, still watching them “But if this is going to work I need you to trust me, I even need you to be okay with Mark and I being friends, because I can’t have a boyfriend who tries to control who I am friends with.”

“Okay,” He said quietly.

“And I need to be able to depend on you,” I continued. “I need you to be there whenever I need you, even if it doesn’t suit.”

“Right,” he said, sounding upset.

“I need you to be there for me, and for our baby. I need to be sure that you won’t give up on us.”

“I will be,” He said, desperately.

I turned to face him and sighed. “And I need to cut you some slack sometimes, and be a lot nicer to you, because you really are a great boyfriend.”

Scorpius’ face broke into a huge grin, and he too got to his feet. Slowly, we neared each other and enveloped in an embrace. Not passionate and angry and inevitable, the way we always were. But instead gentle and loving. And more than anything else, considerate. Scorpius and I had learned that we really had to start considering the other’s feelings a bit more.

“Promise me this is the last time we have to make up,” He whispered to me.

“No more fights, I promise,” I agreed. “Though if this morning was anything to go by, it’s kind of worth it for the make-up sex.”

He laughed quietly. “I thought you regretted that. I thought you were upset.”

“I was upset,” I admitted. “But I didn’t regret it Scorpius, I never do with you somehow. It was amazing.”

“It always is,” He muttered, pressing his lips to mine.

I nodded. “So we’re done being kids, Scorpius. Because let’s face it we’re having one.”

“Done being kids,” He said, nodding. “And done being stupid. I love you.”

I kissed him softly, melting into him again, before breaking the kiss and nodding. “I love you too, Scorpius.”

*

If they still made Time Turners, I would definitely have invested in one by now. I almost hated my parents for destroying them all with Harry and Ginny on one of the many occasions they had raided the Ministry of Magic during their youth. Such items were now illegal, and to all knowledge, no more had been made.

But boy if I had one, I’d be using it a lot lately. By the time New Year passed by, it seemed like someone had hit the fast-forward button on my life, and I couldn’t find the pause button. But then, maybe that was what happened when you were approaching the birth of your first child. Maybe life liked to speed that process up, just to please us.

Although I hadn’t quite hung up my winter’s coat yet, battling as I must against the impossible temperatures of Britain, the sun was starting to shine again. And that meant only one thing; March was upon us.

The baby was due on the 9th April. And as scary as that was, it got scarier. My Mum was convinced that the baby would come early, and despite my initial scoffs, I was now starting to believe her. Because looking at it logically, I had known of three babies being born; Allie, Arthur, and Emma. And every single one of them had come early. So it wasn’t looking good.

Going on the general assumption that my waters were about to break at any minute (despite the fact that going on the word of my Midwife I had another five weeks) I was focusing on getting everything ready, starting with Scorpius.

“Don’t you feel even mildly guilty about the fact that you’re kicking your cousin out her home?” He asked me, as together we boxed up Dom’s things in the lounge.

“No,” I replied. “She offered, remember? You were there.”

“Yeah but I thought the new arrangement was that you two would live together until the baby was born and then she’d move out?”

“It was, until I discovered that in the event of me going into early labour, Dominique would be about as helpful as a wooden spoon. You will at least get me to St Mungo’s; Dom would most likely just cry.”

The realisation of Dom’s ineptitude when it came to any kind of baby-related drama had come in February, and to be honest it had scared the living shit out of me….

“Dom?” I shouted, nervously. “Dom? DOMINIQUE!”

“What?” She yelled, storming into my room with her blonde hair tangled and messy, and her eyes half shut.

“Something’s up,” I muttered, clutching my stomach, “It doesn’t feel right.”

“What?” she demanded. “The baby? Is it coming? What? Oh my god! Oh no Rose no! No! I can’t do this! I can’t deliver him no no no!”

“Dominique calm down,” I said. “It’s probably fine, but I think we should go to St Mungo’s, just to be on the safe – are you even listening to me?”

“-thinks I can deliver the bloody baby? As if I can! She should have just listened to me when I told her to move in with Scorpius but then all the drama with the fighting but now my fault and now I have to deal with this and what am I supposed to do when-”

Will you shut up?” I shouted. “For Christ’s sake I’ll go myself!”

That had been Dom a month ago at the Braxton Hicks, so I wasn’t planning on finding out what she’d be like when I really was in labour.

“Okay, all my stuff is pretty much packed,” she said, strolling into the lounge with a plant under her arm. “I hope you don’t mind that I’m taking my lucky bamboo, Rose…I promise I’ll buy you one of your own.”

I laughed. “It’s fine, honestly. I can’t believe you’re going.”

“I know,” She smiled. “But I’d say Scorp will be far more helpful when the baby is coming.”

“You’re just not so good in a crisis,” I said. “But you’ve been amazing throughout, Dominique. I couldn’t have done this without you.”

“Well I’m heading off,” Said Scorpius. “Leave you two to your last night together.”

“See you,” I said.

“Yeah, later Malfoy.” Dom said, grinning. “Get out my flat; it’s the last time I can say that.”

Three hours later, when we had shrunk everything for Dominique to easily slip into her pocket tomorrow morning when she was leaving for her new flat with Max, we were in our pyjamas and carrying out a very traditional Rose and Dom tradition.

The pair of us sat there, at one in the morning, huddled in a blanket each, eating as much ice cream as our systems could manage, gazing out our living room window at the occasional drunks stumbling home, and having a gossip.

“I’ll miss this,” She said, scooping out more cookie-dough ice cream from her tub. “It’s going to be so weird living with a guy after all the girly stuff we did here.”

“Yeah,” I agreed. “And I’m going to be living with two guys! I’ll be outnumbered.”

“Oh I think little Dominic will know where his bread’s buttered. He’ll be a Mummy’s boy for sure.” She joked.

“I hope so, but will you stop calling him Dominic? It’s not going to happen!”

“Well it’s better than no name!” She laughed.

“I’ll know when he’s born,” I smiled, looking down at my mammoth stomach. “So what will you miss the most?”

She grinned. “The fact that I can eat like an absolute fiend and you don’t judge me! And the nights when we used to just randomly go out for drinks and get pissed.”

“I won’t miss the futile attempts at cleaning,” I joked. “Thank Merlin Scorpius is a clean freak.”

“More than that, though, I think I’ll just miss being so close,” She said. “Honestly Rose, you’ve become like a sister to me.”

“I know what you mean,” I admitted. “I know it was spontaneous and we only lived together for less than a year…but it’s been amazing. And you’ve been amazing.”

“I am sort of sad it’s ending,” She said. “Just think, if we were still living together once the baby’s born I’d get to see him everyday.”

“Oh I don’t think that’s going to be a problem,” I said, shaking my head. “I really think that the Godmother gets to see the baby as often as she wants.”

Dom stared at me in stunned silence, and I smiled.

What?” She barely whispered.

“If you’ll do it,” I added, quietly.

She bit her lip, with tears welling up in her crystal blue eyes. She closed them, taking a deep breath, and finally looked at me again.

“Do you mean it?” She whispered.

“I mean it,” I replied. “Of course I mean it.”

“I’d love to!” She whispered, tearfully. “But are you sure Rose? I mean I always thought you’d ask Megan…”

“I know,” I admitted. “I guess Megan would be the obvious choice, because I’m Allie’s, and she will be completely involved in the baby’s life. But the Godmother should be somebody who has always been there for you, and who you would want to look after your child if you were ever not there. And that person is you, Dom, without a doubt.”

“I can’t believe this. Of course I’ll do it Rose!” She laughed, crying.

“Good,” I said, my own eyes tearful. “I wasn’t going to ask you until he was born, but it just feels right tonight. You were the first person I told, you did the test with me, and you helped me with all of it. And Scorpius agrees that you’re the right person for the job. So don’t think you’re getting rid of me just because you’re moving out,” I said, stroking my bump.

“You’re stuck with the two of us.”

She smiled. “Well I’m honoured. And that’s definitely a better way of saying thank you than calling him Dominic. Though I’m still hoping for a middle name!”

“Yeah,” I said, eating more ice-cream. “Keep dreaming, God-Mummy.”

*


A/N The chapter originally didn't end here, but I decided I wanted to place importance on this moment between Rose and Dom. Their relationship has become so important in the story, even I didn't really see it coming, and I wanted to recognise that. Hope you enjoyed, and agreed with Rose's choice of Godmother! Review?


 


Chapter 36: The Beginning of the End
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Enjoy!!!!!!!

*

 

“Good morning,” I said, sleepily. I looked into Scorpius’ eyes, and he smiled.

“Morning,” He replied. “I like waking up next to you.”

I nodded. “So I’m not annoying you yet? I’m pretty sure the last time we moved in together it was all bliss until you discovered I don’t cook, hate cleaning and toss and turn like a crazy person in my sleep.”

Scorpius laughed. “Well I already knew all those things this time around,” He reminded me. “I was prepared for it.”

“True,” I smiled. “So what’s your plan for the weekend?”

He yawned, sitting up slowly and ruffling his hair with one hand.

“I’m not sure,” He shrugged, stretching and getting out of bed. My eyes lingered on his toned body, and I sighed. Scorpius was so perfect to look at, and I was getting fatter every day.

“What?” He laughed. “The way you’re looking at me you either want to beat me up or you want to shag me.”

I shook my head, laughing. “How about a bit of both? No, I was just thinking about how good you look. It’s kind of depressing, considering I’m about twice my normal size…”

He frowned, sitting back down on the bed beside me. “You’re not seriously worrying about the way you look right now?”

“I know it’s stupid,” I said at once. “And it’s not really about right now…I’m just wondering how I’ll get back to my old self once the baby comes.”

“Well you don’t need to look the way you did,” He said. “I mean having a baby probably changes you, I guess. But you’ll look great no matter what. And as for now, you look amazing Rose. Like seriously sexy.”

I burst out laughing. “Oh yeah, sexy as hell, that’s me!” I said, eyeing my enormous stomach.

“I mean it,” He said, leaning in closer to me. “You’re having my baby and that is very sexy. To be honest I struggle not to just have sex with you every minute of everyday.”

I smiled, kissing him slowly. “That can be arranged.”

“It could have been arranged,” He murmured, pulling away. “If you didn’t have to leave in an hour.”

“I don’t want to go!” I pouted. “I want to stay here in bed with you all day!”

“Well we can’t do that anyway as I’m going to work!” He laughed. “You’re just lucky you could get the weekend off for this; I bet you can’t wait for when you go off next week on maternity leave, eh?”

“I dunno, I think I’ll miss work actually.” I said, getting out of bed and going into the bathroom.

“Anyway, it’s not important right now.” I shouted, from the bathroom, as I switched on the shower. “I have to make myself look respectable.”

“Rose?” He shouted. “Give me two minutes and I’ll join you in there. Show you just how sexy you are.”

I grinned, letting the hot water soak my skin. And funnily enough, twenty minutes later I was feeling kind of sexy after all.

*

“Are you ready? I’m so excited!” Exclaimed Dominique, as we all congregated in Harry and Ginny’s busy kitchen.

“Yeah, I can’t wait!” I said enthusiastically. “Just promise me there’s not surprises or anything, you’ve all done enough already, I mean a baby shower weekend? That’s pushing the boat out.”

“Well it was honestly more just an excuse for us to all go away for a girly weekend,” Admitted Aunt Ginny, dropping her away-bag onto the kitchen table.

“Oh thanks guys,” I muttered, sarcastically.

“Just promise you don’t go into labour while we’re away, darling,” Said Mum, putting her arm around me. “I don’t think I could handle that.”

“The portkey is about to leave, is everyone here?” Asked Aunt Ginny, looking around.

“Just Megan,” I said, frowning.

“Oh here she comes, Rose,” Said Lily, opening the door for Megan, who rushed in with a bag on each shoulder.

“I’m sorry!” She said hastily, as we all congregated around the portkey, which was a small cracked mirror.

“You’re here now,” I said, once we had been sucked through the atmosphere and landed in a large field a minute later. I looked up at the beautiful country house, with its massive grounds and smiled. “And I get the feeling this weekend is going to be amazing.”

Myself, Dom, Megan, Lily, Roxy, Frankie, Victoire, Mum, Aunt Ginny, Aunt Angelina, and Aunt Fleur all made ourselves at home in the cosy yet large house, each of us divvying up to rooms. There were five rooms, so sharing were; Ginny and Mum, Angelina and Fleur, Dom and Victoire, Lily, Roxy and Frankie, and finally Megan and me.

“It’s going to be just like the old days!” She said, bouncing lightly on her bed while I dumped my bag in the bottom of the wardrobe. “Us sharing a room, me listening to your snoring….”

“Yeah, and me kicking the shit out of you!” I laughed.

We all got settled in, and by the time we had sorted out sleeping arrangements, and the first fight between Victoire and Dominique had been handled by their Mum, it was time for dinner. Aunt Fleur took care of it, and we were all thankful; nobody wanted my Mum or Ginny to try and cook. Try being the key word.

“Well I want to propose a toast to Rose,” Said Mum, raising her glass. “And to my grandchild she’ll be having in just two weeks!”

“To Rose!” They all chorused, smiling and sipping their wine in my name.

“Are you sure you don’t want a little half-glass?” Asked Aunt Fleur. “It won’t do any harm!”

“You French with your wine!” I laughed. “Aunt Fleur I’m a Healer, its not exactly a good advert. No honestly, I’m fine with orange juice.”

She shrugged. “Well I had a little sip on occasion with Dominique and she was fine!”

Megan and I glanced at Dom, and we both laughed. “Yeah you’re probably right about that.”

“Didn’t you invite Beth?” Asked Mum, looking at me.

I shrugged. “I don’t know, Dom organised the whole thing.

“I did,” she said, “Even though I didn’t want to. I only did it because James asked me to; he didn’t want her to feel left out. But she declined, anyway. Said she had Emma.”

“Why is James so bloody worried about Beth being left out?” Asked Ginny irritably.

Dom nodded darkly. “Couldn’t agree more. But we can’t exactly say anything.”

Ginny sighed. “Every time I think about what that girl did to my James…”

“Okay come on!” I said hastily. “Let’s not go down the whole James/Beth/Emma route, it never ends well. This is my baby shower weekend fiasco after all!”

“Yeah, we have gifts for you Rose,” Said Dom, getting up and returning a second later with a pile of gift bags and packages.

“Just a few little things,” Said Mum reassuringly.

A few little things, maybe, but it was all highly useful; bibs, bottles, booties…all the stuff that I would need.

“Thanks everyone,” I smiled. “I’m sure Scorpius and I would have forgotten something, but it looks as though you’ve got everything covered here.”

“How is Scorpius?” Asked Angelina.

“He’s fine,” I said, nodding. “I think he’s really excited about the baby coming; he can’t wait.”

“Well the Dads are all the same,” said Ginny, smiling. “Harry was beside himself when we found out we were having James.”

“Shame Al had to come along and ruin it eh?” Joked Dominique.

We all laughed. I smiled around at them, feeling grateful for tonight. I got the feeling I wasn’t going to have time for everyone once the baby came, and it was a bit scary. Just having this stay with them was amazing; laughing, eating, and just enjoying each other’s company.

By midnight, we were all exhausted, and decided to head to our bedrooms. Megan, Dominique and I lingered in the sitting room, with the fire crackling quietly beside us.

“Well,” Said Dom, raising her glass. “Second toast of the night. To us; twelve and a half years of friendship, and we’re still going strong. I think that says a lot, don’t you ladies?”

“Absolutely,” Grinned Megan. “It’s so weird to think of us entering the next stage of our lives, settling down, having kids…”

“Even though some of us were doing that before we turned 18!” I said, laughing. “No I know what you mean…it sort of all seems to be coming to an end, doesn’t it? Like we’re ending this chapter and starting a new one.”

“Yeah,” said Dom, looking into the fire. “Guys I have a confession to make….”

Megan and I both raised our eyebrows, frowning, and Dom took a deep breath. She looked up at both of us smiling. “I’m jealous of both of you.”

“Oh my god, Dom, I am so jealous of you!” Exclaimed Megan. “I’m jealous that you have all your freedom and you’ve just moved in with your boyfriend and it’s all so fresh and new! And I’m jealous of Rose because she’s going to have a little newborn and that really is the best bit!”

“I’m jealous of Dom because she has everything at her fingertips,” I agreed. “And I’m jealous of Megan because…you just make it all look so easy!”

Megan laughed. “Believe me, it’s not. Raising a child is not easy, and keeping the magic alive after four years of marriage is certainly not. I struggle a lot more than I let you all see.”

“But everything’s okay with Steven isn’t it?” I asked, quietly.

“Yeah,” she replied at once. “But remember how I told you guys last year that he wanted another baby? Well he’s still really set on the idea and I’m still really not. I’m worried it’s going to end up causing a ridge between us.”

“It won’t,” I said surely. “I mean even if you never had another kid that would still be enough for him. You and Allie are his life, Megan!”

She nodded, looking down. “I know. I just hope it’s enough. When I think about how it was when I was pregnant and he wasn’t there for me…I don’t think I could do that again. I can’t imagine raising Allie on my own.”

“That is not going to happen!” Exclaimed Dom, whacking Megan with a cushion. “You are not allowed to go all complicated love life the second ScoRose finally put all their problems to rest for good!”

“ScoRose?” I asked, laughing.

“Apparently it is what Lucy refers to you as,” She said, shrugging. “Don’t ask me to enter the mind of a twelve-year old, I thought it was catchy.”

“I’m being stupid,” Said Megan, smiling. “We really have been having the same conversations for the last twelve years haven’t we?”

“Yes,” I admitted. “But it wouldn’t have been half as fun if we hadn’t been. Let’s be honest, we really have let the men in our lives control our happiness way too much…but let’s hope that’s done with. We’re all in good, happy relationships finally.”

“Look I hate to go all soppy,” Said Dom. “But promise me that no matter what happens and where we go, we’ll always be friends.”

“Of course!” Laughed Megan. “You two are never getting rid of me.”

“Me neither,” I nodded. I took both of their hands, grinning at these two girls who had been my sisters, my confidants, my support system and my best friends. “We’ll be sitting like this in fifty years, I’m sure of it. We’re soul mates.”

And we were. We might have found the men we were meant to be with, and hopefully the three relationships would last forever. But the truth was, the three of us had found each other long before that.

*

We had all day of Sunday before we had to leave the following morning, so we continued the very girly theme by heading to the nearby spa. I had admit, the pampering was pretty damn good, I wasn’t used to getting massages, facials, manicures and all the works. It was brilliant.

After some lunch, Dominique and I went for a swim in the huge, heated pool at the spa. Seeing as it was the middle of March, we were the only guests, meaning we had the entire pool to ourselves. After a few lengths, and then a sauna in which we discussed at length Dom and Max’s sex life (much to my dismay) we finally went to find the others.

“Where’s Mum?” I asked Aunt Ginny, looking around. Everyone was there, getting their hair done, apart from her.

“She went for a walk, but she’s been gone a while now you mention it,” She replied. “I should go find her.”

“No I’ll go,” I insisted. I wasn’t exactly sure where my Mum was, but the Spa Hotel sat atop a low mountain with a gorgeous view, and I knew the chances were I would find her there.

“Okay,” said Ginny. “Well it’s getting on; I think we’re going back to the cottage. Will you just meet us back there for dinner?”

“Yeah,” I agreed, making my way out to the grounds. I soon found my Mum sitting at the mountainside edge, looking out to the sky, which was starting to dim slightly. I went to sit next to her, and shivered slightly. I pulled out my wand and conjured a blanket, placing it over both of our knees.

“Should I be worried?” I joked. “I find my mother on the edge of a cliff…”

Mum laughed. “I guess I lost track of time, I’m sorry pet.”

I smiled. “What are you doing up here Mum?”

“I was thinking about your Nana,” She said quietly. “Just wishing she was here I suppose. It doesn’t feel the same without her, does it?”

“No,” I agreed, looking at the view of sea and sky. “But I like to think of her as flying now, with Granddad at her side.”

Mum nodded. “That’s a nice way to think of her. You’ve become such a good person Rose.” She said, putting her arm around me. “Sometimes I can’t believe how grown up and mature you are, because you’re my little girl.”

I laughed. “I’m not that mature. My son will probably get all his morals and discipline from Scorp to be honest.”

She shook her head. “You’ll be a fantastic mother. It’s just a bit sad for me…I’ve lost my little girl now. You don’t need your Mum anymore; you’re going to be his Mum! But that’s the way it’s supposed to be.”

I sighed, resting my head against her shoulder.

“That might be the way it’s meant to be, but it won’t be that way for me,” I said quietly. “The only reason I’m not freaking out about the baby is because I know I’ve got you Mum…regardless of what happens with Scorpius, or my friends, I know I have Hugo, Dad, and most importantly you. You’ve been such a good Mum to me that I’ve learned from the best, but I’ll always need you Mum.”

“I’m so proud of you,” She whispered, kissing my head. “You are by far the best thing I ever accomplished Rose Weasley, and I love you.”

“I love you too,” I smiled. “Now can we please go and get some dinner? Because I am freezing and starving and Ginny will think we have been eaten by wolves. She was all for coming to find you herself.”

Mum laughed. “That’s Ginny. She’s a great friend though. I hope you’ll always have someone like that in your life Rose, it’s a priceless thing to have.”

“I do,” I said, smiling. “I have Dom. She’s my Ginny, and she sure is priceless. That’s why I asked her to be Godmother.”

Mum’s face lit up. “Oh Rose that’s a lovely thing to do. She must be so happy. Although I hope Megan won’t take it badly.”

I shrugged. “I think Megan understands. Dominique has just been unwavering and invaluable to me in the last five years. It was a no-brainer.”

She nodded. “So, any thoughts about Godfather?”

“I’ve had an idea,” I smiled. “But I’ll tell you once I’ve asked him.”

Back at the cottage, we enjoyed another meal, this time prepared by Megan and Victoire. Mum had suggested that Dom and I go in and help them, but we had both just laughed. We didn’t do domestic. Full stop.

“You know what I love?” said Aunt Fleur, sipping her wine. “I love dancing.”

We all laughed. “Well feel free Mum,” said Dom, pointing her wand at the magical wireless so that the music became louder.

“I can’t dance on my own!” She said. “Anyway I was just stating that I like it! I used to love when Bill and I first starting seeing each other and we used to go out dancing all the time.”

“I’ll dance with you Fleur,” said Ginny, getting to her feet.

“Me too,” Agreed Angelina. “We’ll show you young ones how it’s done. We’ve all got a few moves.”

I laughed as my Mum joined them, and the four of them starting dancing about the living room, waving their arms, jumping up and down, laughing hysterically. I caught Victoire’s eye and she laughed.

“You know what the depressing thing is?” She said. “There’s that lot, who are the oldies, and then you are all the young ones. I am a total middle ground. I can’t believe I’m nearly thirty!”

“Oh but we both know you can still shimmy,” Said Dom, getting up and pulling her sister up by the hand to join them.

“Well I’m not missing out on this!” Said Roxy, jumping up with Lily and Frankie.

And so Megan, Dom and I were the only ones left. I raised my eyebrows at both of them and we all grinned.

“We did say we were starting out on a new chapter, getting older, becoming adults…” Said Megan, trying not to laugh. “We really shouldn’t be as childish as the rest of them.”

“Absolutely not,” Agreed Dom.

“Although…we did totally reinvent the whole concept of the three-person dance troupe when we started clubbing when we were eighteen.” I said, shrugging. “It would be a shame to let those moves go to waste…”

And so we did. And by the time morning came around and it was time to go home, I was pretty certain we all now shared Aunt Fleur’s love of dancing.

*

“Scorpius?” I called, letting myself into the flat that morning. “I’m back.”

He didn’t answer, but I could hear him moving about. I dropped my bags and walked into our room, but he wasn’t there. I frowned, crossing the hall to Dominique’s old, now unused room.

The sight that met me was one I’d never been expecting.

“Scorp...” I whispered. “What is all this?”

He smiled. “I know we said we’d wait and sort it all out once the baby came, but I took advantage of the weekend to myself. Do you like it?”

I stared at the freshly painted, lemon walls, the big, squashy toys lined up neatly, the clean white changing table, and lastly the beautiful cot we had bought last week with a delicate baby mobile hanging above it.

I went over to Scorpius and kissed him, grinning against his lips. “I love it. And I love you.”

“Good stuff,” He smiled. “So do you want to go out today?”

“Yeah, let’s go for lunch,” I said. “I just want to nip over to see James for five minutes first though, I feel like I haven’t seen him in ages.”

“Cool, hurry back though. I missed you.”

I grinned, and a split second later Scorpius and the nursery were gone, as with a loud crack I appeared on James and Fred’s doorstep. I knocked it once; I knew I was welcome to just walk in, as James so often did at my flat, and I knew Fred would be at work, but I thought I’d be polite.

After a couple of seconds, I knocked again, to no answer. Shrugging, I tried the door on the odd chance he was home and just in the shower or something. It was unlocked, and so I let myself in. My cousins and I really did spend to much time together to be this comfortable walking into each others’ homes.

As soon as I entered the flat, I knew James was home. I could hear his television, and there was the distinct smell of wine and vodka lingering. I rolled my eyes, I was clearly interrupting a very hungover James Potter from his sleep by being here.

I was about to leave him to it, when I decided to creep into the living room and turn off his television. Had that boy even heard of global warming and saving the planet? I opened the door to the living room and stepped in, before stopping dead.

In hindsight, that he would have a girl here should have been obvious. But I would never have imagined they would be lying naked on the living room floor.

And I didn’t imagine in a million years that the girl would be Beth Hardy.

*

 

A/N Thoughts?????x

 
 


Chapter 37: Wait and Wait Again
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N Hi again! Well, I hope you have all seen HP and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 by now! Personally I have been twice and I absolutely loved it! What did the rest of you think? Anyways, here I am with a semi-filler, but this chapter is important and hopefully entertaining. There's only two more left after this one, so enjoy!

*

Albus walked into his and Frankie’s kitchen, laughing.

“Oh Rosie, I love you too! You’ve been off work two days and already you’re coming to visit me – I don’t blame you, I would miss me too.”

“That’s it,” I said, draining my tea. “I can’t stay away from you Albus.”

Frankie rolled her eyes. “Why do you always assume it’s about you?”

“Because nine times out of ten I’m right,” He said, winking. “So go on Rose, why are you here?”

I sighed, putting my cup down on the table. “Well you’re actually right this time Al, much as it pains me to say it. I have something to ask you.”

“Shoot,” He replied.

I smiled. “Scorpius and I would like you to be the baby’s godfather…if you’re up for it.”

He raised his eyebrows, and I got a glimpse of the Albus that I liked to think only I knew. The sentimental Albus.

“Are you serious?” He asked. “Rosie I’d love to.”

“Well that’s good,” I said, getting up to give him a hug. “You’re my favourite cousin, and you’re Scorp’s best friend. There’s nobody better.”

He grinned, still hugging me tightly. “Thanks Rose. I won’t let you down. I thought you’d pick James to be honest, now he’s a Dad and stuff…”

“Exactly, he has his own baby!” I laughed. “I want someone who will be completely devoted to mine.”

“Then I’m your man,” He grinned. “James was looking for you yesterday actually, said he needed to talk to you about something.”

“Oh,” I said, awkwardly. “No I’ve not seen him.”

“I’m going round his now to have a look at his knee, he says he messed it up at training last week. Come with me.”

“No it’s fine, I’ll catch up with him later,” I assured him. “Honestly its fine, Scorpius and me are having a romantic dinner anyway!”

He smiled. “Fair enough, he probably just wants to hint about what he wants for his birthday. So are you and Scorp savouring these last few days before the chaos starts?”

“I guess,” I laughed.

“I still can’t believe you’re baby is due next week Rose!” Exclaimed Frankie. “You should go home, take it easy.”

“I’ll try!” I said, bracingly. “To be honest I can’t believe I’ve not had him yet! Anyway I’ll see you both later.”

The pleasant smell of Scorpius’ pasta hit me as soon as I entered the flat and I smiled to myself. I found him in the kitchen with a sad little apron tied around his waist, seizing the opportunity to poke fun at it.

“You are actually such a geek,” I laughed as we took seats at the table. Scorpius had even lit a candle, bless him. “Though this does smell good.”

“Tastes good too,” I added, swallowing my first mouthful. “Your cooking really has improved since the last time we lived together.”

He grinned. “Well I had to fend for myself when I was in Wales,” He pointed out. “I had to get good at it.”

“Well I like it,” I said. “So how are you feeling? Nervous?”

“I dunno,” He said. “I guess. I think I’m more just eager for him to come now; I mean considering how quickly those nine months go in, the last few weeks don’t half drag by do they?”

“Yeah,” I agreed. “I just still can’t believe this time next week we’ll have a baby!”

“More like any minute!” He exclaimed. “I honestly think you’re going to have it within the next few days.”

I sighed as there was a loud, familiar knock at the door. That knock meant only one person.

“James,” Said Scorpius, letting him in. “Is everything okay mate?”

“Yeah it is,” he said. “Rose, I need to talk to you.”

Scorpius looked from James to me, raising his eyebrows, and then shrugged.

“I’ll leave you to it,” He said, going into the bedroom and closing the door.

“So what’s going on?” I asked him, as he sat down in Scorpius’ vacated seat.

James exhaled, rubbing his eyes. “I know you saw us.”

“Saw who?” I asked, putting my fork down.

“Rose!” He exclaimed, shaking his head. “I know you saw me and Beth the other morning. I woke up just as you were rushing out of there.”

I sighed. “It’s really none of my business, James…I mean personally I think it’s a big mistake but it’s really up to you.”

“Its not like I’m going out with her,” He said defensively. “She came over to talk to me about taking Emma on holiday in the summer, we decided to have a drink…one drink became many and it just happened.”

“Yeah, just like it just happened the night Emma was conceived,” I reminded him. “Look I’m not judging you, which is why I didn’t mention it to you; nor to anyone else. And if it was just a one night stand then I suppose there’s nothing to worry about.”

James looked down at the table and I frowned. “Unless it wasn’t just a one night stand?”

 “I don’t know!” He said, sounding frustrated with himself. “We have this…connection.”

“James,” I said, shaking my head. “A sexual connection with someone does not mean that-”

“No,” He interrupted. “It’s more than that. I don’t know…maybe it’s just that we share Emma but being parents definitely ties you to a person. And then the other night happened. I just don’t know how I feel, I mean I don’t do relationships, as a rule, but this is different.”

“She may be the mother of your child, but she’s also the woman who tried to take Emma away to Portugal, and didn’t even consult you! She’s the woman who was prepared to slate you in a court of law to stop you from getting joint custody! Just don’t forget the person Beth is, James, because that will be when you could really lose sight of things.”

“I know,” He murmured quietly. “But what if she’s changed?”

I laughed. “You know, Scorpius and I are living proof that people can change for the better…so if she has, then fine. You just have to ask yourself whether that’s what you want.”

James grinned. “Aren’t you normally receiving advice like this rather than giving it?”

“Yeah,” I laughed. “And at some point I realised that nobody could tell me what to do. I just had to go with my instincts and here I am.”

He nodded. “You’re happy, you’re in love. And this time next week you’ll be a Mum.”

“Or this time tomorrow, according to Scorp. He thinks I’m going into labour any second!”

*

“This is absolutely fucking ridiculous!” I muttered, chucking the magazine I had barely looked at onto the table.

“I’m sorry,” Said Megan, looking sympathetic. “I know how uncomfortable you are, this is the hardest bit.”

“Do you really?” I demanded. “Because you’re baby came three weeks early! My due date was five days ago Megan! Five!”

“And I also know that you are a hormonal mess, so I’m not taking that personally.” She said, shaking her head. “Do you want a glass of water or anything? A rope?”

“My sides are splitting,” I said sarcastically.

She laughed, getting up and taking my half eaten plate of salad with her.

“No seriously,” I continued. “If you make me laugh any harder, this baby will just shoot out of me.”

Megan handed me the glass of water, laughing. “Stop being such a bitch!”

“I’m sorry! But this is doing my head in!” I moaned. “I mean as if its not bad enough that I’m overdue, I’m also stuck inside like a fucking hermit! High blood pressure! I bet Scorpius bribed Healer Docherty to say that!”

“I’m sure he did,” She muttered.

“Its just annoying,” I said. “This baby is turning out to be just as stubborn as his father.”

“Oh yeah, because Scorpius is definitely the stubborn one in your relationship!” She laughed. “If you ask me he’s just like his Mum. Do you have a name yet?”

“No,” I said. “Not that I’m going to need one as this baby is NEVER COMING OUT!”

“Uh oh,” Said Scorpius, entering the flat having finished work. “Did I just walk in another my baby is late tantrum?”

“Shut up,” I told him. “Megan, you can go home now; Scorpius and I have to have sex.”

“Excuse me?” Said Megan and Scorpius at the same time.

I pointed at our barely used television. “It worked for Ross and Rachel! She was late, they had sex, she went into labour! Perfect!”

“Who the hell are Ross and Rachel?” Asked Megan, looking confused.

“They didn’t even have sex Rose!” Said Scorpius at once. “They were about to and then her waters broke, and then Ross said man I’m good and then-”

He suddenly stopped himself, looking embarrassed. Megan and I grinned at him; Scorpius was a much bigger fan of television sitcoms than he liked to admit.

“Okay, rather than run the risk of seeing you two at it, I’m going home,” said Megan, ducking down to kiss me on the cheek. “I sincerely hope the next time I see you, you have a baby in your arms.”

“Thanks,” I grinned, and she disapparated. “Okay,” I said, getting up, It took several minutes, and a lot of struggling, but I was finally on my feet, and I made my way to where Scorpius stood, watching me shrewdly.

“Hi,” I said, kissing him on the cheek. “Have I ever mentioned how much I like you in this suit?”

“Stop it,” He said, shaking his head. “I don’t care what may or may not have worked for two fictional characters; you have high blood pressure and are under strict orders from your Healer to take it easy. I really don’t think sex falls into that category.”

“I don’t have high blood pressure!” I insisted. “I’m a Healer, I know things. Please Scorpius! You know what they say; pregnant sex is the best kind!”

He laughed. “Yeah and we’ve had plenty while you’ve been pregnant. But I don’t think now is the best time.”

I sighed. “This is just doing my head in, like so badly.” I said quietly. “I’m getting so frustrated.”

“Me too,” he said gently. “But you know what Mary said, if you haven’t gone into labour within nine days you’ll be induced. One way or another you’re having him in a just over a week.”

“A week!” I exclaimed. “I can’t the thought of another hour like this!”

“I know,” He said. “But you never know, this time tomorrow you might have had him!”

*

I hadn’t. The days dragged by, and every morning I woke up wanting to punch something because I still hadn’t had the baby. Unfortunately for Scorpius, he was normally on the receiving end of those punches. I honestly did blame him for this; I was always the epitome of punctual, so the baby must have been getting this whole lateness thing from him.

When I woke up on my 23rd birthday, I was almost at breaking point to find I had slept perfectly with no waters breaking, or contractions or anything. The only saving grace was that the baby was now nine days late; at this rate, it was looking more and more likely that I would be induced, and that would only be five days away.

“Did you ever think maybe you’re just providing such a warm, comfy home for him that he just doesn’t want to leave?” Asked Mum.

“Oh yeah, that’s bound to be it.” I said sarcastically.

“Well you must be pleased he’s not come today, at least!” Said Dom. “I mean you wouldn’t want to share your birthday with your son!”

“At this point, I genuinely wouldn’t care,” I said. “I feel exhausted!”

And I did. I was constantly tired even though I was sleeping like twelve hours a night these days, my back was aching pretty much constantly, it took me about seven minutes to get off the couch, and given that we were now into an oddly warm British spring, I was hot and uncomfortable.

All of these fun facts had contributed to my decision to not really do much for my birthday. All the family and a few of my close friends had popped round to give me presents and have cake with me this afternoon, but most of them had left now. They were actually all pretty grateful, considering loads of them had gone out for James’ 24th birthday last night, and were feeling a little worse for wear. This was the first year James and I hadn’t held a joint celebration, but I just didn’t feel up to it.

“Not long now,” Said Mum consolingly, rubbing my shoulder. She was sitting beside me on the couch, while Dom sat on the edge of the table in front of me, fanning me with one of my birthday cards.

“Rose, I’ve made dinner!” Called Scorpius from the kitchen. “Will I bring you it in?”

I’m not even hungry!” I whispered to them. “But he keeps making me all this food and I feel bad for refusing it. As if I’m not fat enough!”

“Well this looks lovely,” Said Mum, as Scorpius carried a plate of pasta to me. “I should get going; I’ve left your Dad and Harry to deal with assembling the new shed, which probably wasn’t a good idea. Oh and Hugo’s coming home tomorrow, that’ll cheer you up!” She said enthusiastically. “I bet he never imagined you’d still be pregnant when he finished his tour!”

“Believe me, neither did I!” I laughed. “I’d get up to hug you, but you’ll be home in the time it would take me to get up.”

“I’ll drop in tomorrow pet.” She said, blowing a kiss at me. “See you later.”

“I should go too,” Said Dom. “I’ve decided to have a threesome with Max and his ex, and I think tonight’s the night.”

“What?” I demanded, in shock.

Dom shrugged. “Had to try it. I’m kidding; I thought if I gave you a big enough shock you might go into labour, but hey!”

I rolled my eyes. “It’s not hiccoughs, Dominique.”

Scorpius flopped down beside me once she had left, and I leaned against him, closing my eyes. I sighed as a tear welled up in the corner of my eye.

“Rose,” He sighed, putting his arm around me. “This won’t last much longer; I know how frustrated you’re getting. I love you so much, you crazy pregnant bitch.”

I smiled. “I love you too much, Scorpius Malfoy.

The following day, I was determined to be in a good mood, and not mope about. Okay, so my baby was overdue, but it wasn’t the end of the world. Come a couple of days time, I would be induced, and the pregnancy would be over. The thought made me relieved, but also a little sad.

As Hugo was home, I was desperate to get round to my parents’ house to see him. Unfortunately my high blood pressure coupled with my very far along stage in pregnancy meant all means of magical travel were very much ruled out. And so instead my Dad was coming to pick me up.

“You know I can’t remember the last time you drove me somewhere, Dad,” I said, messing about with his radio.

“And yet some things never change,” He said, raising his eyebrows at the modern station I had settled on.

The drive was pretty short, given that the roads weren’t busy and Dad was well practised in getting out of the city centre as quickly as possible. We were soon drawing up to the house, and I smiled at it fondly. My son would definitely be spending a lot of time here as he grew up. This was the perfect place for kids.

Dad helped me out of the car and we let ourselves into the house. I was about to rush over to Hugo, and hug him, but as soon as we saw him, we knew something was wrong.

“What’s-”

Hugo held up his hand to silence Dad, looking at the magical wireless, from which an important, official voice was speaking.

“-ministry officials have not yet advised whether the threat is being treated as genuine or not. As yet, every member of ministry staff is currently being questioned, including all of the Aurors. The investigation is being led by head of the Auror office, Harry Potter, who has called for nobody to be allowed in or out of the Ministry of Magic until it can be determined whether or not this threat of dark magic is a genuine attack which could undoubtedly spell trouble for the entire magical community. More news will come; however for now all that can be done is wait.”

I stared at Hugo, in shock just like Dad. He had gone pale and Hugo was looking down at the table.

“What do they mean threat?” I whispered.

Hugo sighed. “Apparently Uncle Harry received a tip off that someone within the ministry was planning an attack on the Auror office today. The exits have all been sealed while they try to figure out whether it’s true. In the meantime, nobody is getting in or out.”

“But Hermione’s in there…” whispered Dad. “And Lily’s on placement there, and Percy will be working, and Angelina, and-”

“Scorpius,” I said, shakily. “He’s there.” I suddenly shook my head, furiously. “No, no, not now. No!”

“Rose, what?” Asked Hugo, looking scared.

I sighed, biting my lip and clutching my stomach with one hand. “I think it’s time.” 

 
*

 

A/N After years of dramatics, this was never going to run smoothly for Rose! I hope you guys enjoyed this chapter, please leave a review, as always it means the world to me. I'm currently trying to get round to responding to every single one so please continue leaving them, they inspire me! Lots of love, Katy


Chapter 38: Remember Me As A Time Of Day
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N The penultimate chapter....

*

I don’t think I had ever really understood the true meaning of waiting before. Not until now. Me sitting on the sofa in my parents’ house, Hugo rushing away to London to find out more about the situation at the Ministry, Dad flooing to St Mungo’s for advice on when he should bring me in. And me, sitting here, waiting.

“I almost resent you for this,” I said to my stomach. “I mean it if I didn’t already love you, you’d be in trouble. You keep me waiting an extra eleven days, and then you decide to make your way into the world at the worst possible time.”

The contractions were few and far between, so I knew there was no point in going to St Mungo’s yet. Dad felt the need to double check with my Healer, which was the reason for the now deserted house.

I couldn’t allow myself to consider the possibility that something bad might happen at the ministry. I couldn’t even take in the idea that this might go on all day, and that Scorpius might miss the birth. I just couldn’t.

And so instead I found myself thinking about something I hadn’t thought about in a long time; Hogwarts. It had felt like the hardest, most testing days of my life at the time, but looking back it had all been so easy and innocent. Going out with Scorpius, then fighting with him, then going out with him again, then fighting with him; I would give anything for those days now. But they were lost to me, and so was the naïve young girl I had been.

Finally, the fireplace roared blue, and Dad stepped out of it, looking stressed.

“Okay, I spoke to your Healer,” He said. “She told me we’re just to time the contractions and come in when they’re-”

“Three to four minutes apart, I know,” I said. “Right now they’re like fifteen minutes apart, so we have a bit of waiting to do.”

“Right,” He said, sitting down beside me. “By which time this carry-on at the Ministry will be done with, and Scorpius and your Mum will be here and we will all go with you to St Mungo’s.”

“Yeah,” I agreed. “Dad will you get Dom for me? I need her to go round to the flat and get a few things for me to take to St Mungo’s.”

“Of course, but you know I can go for you,” He said.

“No,” I replied at once. “Dad I need you here, you can’t leave me.”

Dad nodded. “I’ll get her.”

He was back with her in seconds, the beauty of apparition I suppose. Dominique was all emotional and panicking and excited.

“Rose! I can’t believe its time! You mustn’t worry about this whole Ministry thing, I’m sure it will be sorted in no time.”

I opened my mouth to reply, when the appearance of a silvery, glistening beaver silenced me.

Hugo’s voice came echoed and distant, but we could still hear the slightly edge to it even in his patronus;

At the Ministry just now, its chaos outside. Seems everyone had the same idea as me in coming down here. They’re not saying much, but from what I’ve got from the reporters it seems Harry’s hoping to have it sorted within the next few hours. Security wouldn’t even let me send in a patronus to Mum to let her know. I’ll stay here and keep you posted, let me know if you go to St Mungo’s.

I sighed, looking at the floor.

“I’ll go and get your stuff,” said Dom, quietly.

And so again it was just Dad and me. He sat back down beside me, and took in a deep breath. He put his feet up on the coffee table, and then took them off it. I smiled, Dad always fidgeted when he was nervous.

“Do you want me to let the Malfoys know?” He asked.

“Dad,” I said, smiling. He hated the Malfoys, and yet he would go to them for me. “No it’s fine, Draco will be at the Ministry, and Astoria is visiting her parents down south so there’s no point.”

“I could get Ginny?” He suggested. “Though she’s probably with Hugo looking for information on Harry and Lily…what about Al? or James?”

“It’s fine!” I assured him. “I don’t want anyone else fussing over me.”

I gasped, grabbing his hand as another contraction pierced my insides. It wasn’t yet the agony I knew they would become, but it was seriously uncomfortable. I wasn’t sure I was going to manage when they were coming every half a minute.

“Breathe,” Said Dad. “You’re okay.”

I breathed in deeply, nodding. Five minutes later, Dominique was back with my stuff. She asked if I needed her to stay, but I told her to go home. Her Mum was freaking out because Teddy and Victoire were at the Ministry and she was looking after Arthur, so Dom was going round to keep her calm.

“I’ll let you know when we’re going in, you can meet me there,” I promised.

“Are you sure?” She asked, sounding concerned.

“Yes. Honestly Dom it’s going to be a while yet, and it’s just going to be really boring!”

“Okay, let me know when you’re going to St Mungo’s.” She said. And in the same second, she disapparated. As soon as she was gone, I bit my lip, feeling tears spilling over my eyes.

“Rose, what is it?” Asked Dad, worriedly. He set down the cold water he had been bringing me and took me hand. “What is it?”

I shook my head, wiping my eyes hastily. “It’s nothing.”

“Rose Weasley,” He said. “Come on, this is me you’re talking to. Why are you crying?”

“I’m scared,” I admitted. “What if Scorpius and Mum don’t get out of there in time and he misses the baby being born?”

“He’ll be there,” Dad said. “You know Harry won’t keep everyone any longer than he has to. I’m just glad I’m on my day off.”

“Me too,” I said. “I’m so glad you’re here…Dad?”

“Yeah?”

I took a deep breath and voiced the fear that had plagued me for so long now. “What if the baby doesn’t like me?”

“What?” He said, shaking his head. “Don’t be ridiculous. How could the baby not like you? You’re going to be is favourite person in the whole world, trust me.”

I nodded shakily, looking down at my knees as the tears continued to fall.

“But what about me?” I whispered. “What if I don’t like the baby? I didn’t even want him for most of my pregnancy; I mean what if he knows? What if I have him and I just can’t love him?”

I couldn't even pass the fears off as irrational, as a result of labour. This was a very real fear that had been with me for the last nine months, and I couldn't ignore it anymore.

“Rose you will,” He said. “I can’t explain why, but believe me, when you’re holding him in your arms, you’ll get it. When you were born…” He trailed off, with tears in his own eyes. He took a deep breath, wiping his eyes roughly.

“Right after your Mum had you,” He started again, in a shaky voice. “She was totally exhausted; she’d been in labour for hours. And the Healer handed you to me, and I just looked at you, and thought you were the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen. And I was hooked, I knew I would love you from then until the day I died.”

He put his arm around me and kissed the top of my head gently, his tears running into my hair. “You’ll be amazing, Rose, I know it. God I love you so much, my baby girl.”

“I love you too, Dad,” I whispered tearfully.

*

An hour later, I was digging my nails into the side of the sofa, panting in short breaths.
“How long was that since the last?” I gasped.

“Five minutes,” Said Dad, looking at his watch.

I nodded, glancing at the wireless, from which there had been no new news. “We’re going to have to go in without them, aren’t we?”

“I think so,” He said, gravely. “But Rose, I promise you, I will be there with you every step of the way.”

“I know you will,” I said, manoeuvring myself halfway onto my side so I could get up onto my feet. “I just didn’t want Scorpius to miss this.”

There were two sudden, loud cracks and James and Albus appeared in the lounge, looking nervous.

“Rose!” They both exclaimed, rushing to my sides. “They’ve declared the threat was a hoax!” Said Al, breathlessly. “They’re to start opening the exits within the next few minutes.”

I closed my eyes, and sighed in relief. All I had to do was hold out another five minutes, and Scorpius would be here.

“They’re getting out!” Dom’s shouts were to be heard before she had even materialised in the room with another crack. “Rose, they’re getting out, he’s going to be there!” She said, taking my hand.

I nodded, scrunching my eyes shut as another contraction came, more and more painful every time.

“Dad!” I cried out, reaching for his hand. He was there in a second, with his arm around me. I took deep breaths waiting for it to pass, holding onto him for support.

“Okay,” I whispered, opening my eyes. Al, James, and Dom looked terrified of what they had just witnessed. “I think it’s time to go in now.”

“Don’t you want to wait for-?”

Crack. Crack.

“Oh thank Merlin!” Shouted Dad, as Mum and Scorpius appeared at last. I had to admire the irony; the place was full to the brim, after it just being Dad and me for the last two hours.

“Rose!” Murmured Scorpius, rushing to me and enveloping me in an embrace.

“Ouch!” I exclaimed, pushing him away but keeping my hold on his hand. “Really time to go!”

The journey in the car with Mum, Dad and Scorpius went by in a dazed way; it almost felt as though it wasn’t really happening. Of course, that may have something to do with the fact that I thought I was going to pass out with the pain.

Mum sat in the front next to Dad, while Scorpius held my hand in the back, breathing with me the way the Healer had taught us.

“It’s a nice day for a baby to be born,” I said, squeezing his hand as I looked out the window. “Nice and sunny.”

“Yeah,” said Scorpius, sounding like he thought I’d finally snapped. “Thank Christ,” he muttered, as we pulled up at St Mungo’s.

Dad and Scorpius helped me in, while Mum went to the desk to give my information. In a flash, I was helped into a wheelchair, and Scorpius was pushing me to the maternity unit, with Dad and Mum on either side.

Al, Dom, Hugo, and James were already there waiting for us, along with Megan, Frankie, Ginny, Lily, and the rest of the family. Wow, news travelled fast among the Weasleys.

“Rose,” Smiled Mary, our Healer. “I bet you’re happy to finally be here.”

“Happy,” I said. “And a little scared. My contractions are three and a half minutes apart, I waited for hours. My water broke on the way here, on Dad’s leather seats; so I’d say its time.”

“Once a Healer,” She muttered, grinning. “Well let’s get you into your room. Are you just bringing Scorpius? How about Mum comes too?”

“No,” I said, as an orderly wheeled me into my room. “I want Dom.”

*

“Come on, Rose, big push!”

I used to think I was strong. I mean when I was little, I always used to beat Hugo at wrestling. But now I knew, I had little to no strength. And there was no way I was strong enough to push this baby out.

I cried out as another contraction hit me, making my spine tingle, my legs shake, and my back arch. I squeezed the hands of Scorpius and Dom, on either side of me, knowing that I would do anything in the world to end this pain.

“It hurts too much!” I cried. “I can’t!”

“Rose, come on!” said Mary firmly. “You know you need to push. Now! Push Rose!”

“You can do it, Rosie,” Said Dom tearfully. “Come on, I know you can do it.”

“I can’t,” I said, with tears running down my face. “I’m sorry I can’t!”

“You can!” Insisted Scorpius, pulling my face to look at him. “Rose Weasley, you are the strongest person I know, you can do this. After everything you have come through, there is no doubt you can do it. Come on, do it for me. I love you so much, just push!”

My eyes locked with his and I nodded. I burrowed my chin against my chest, clutching their hands as if they were my lifelines, and put everything I had into pushing.

“You’re doing it!” Encouraged Mary. “Keep going.”

“Don’t stop Rose!” Shouted Dom.

“Come on,” Scorpius’ voice was the quietest, but it was loud and triumphant in my ear. I knew he believed in me, and that was what I needed to keep going.

I continued to push, screaming out as the agony reached a new height, but I didn’t stop. I kept going until I thought I would about to faint, and finally, I knew, it was over.

I collapsed onto the bed, panting in exhaustion. There was a loud ringing in my ears, and I had my eyes closed in relief and crippling pain and fatigue.

As soon as I was breathing at a semi-normal rate again, I knew something was wrong. Where were the cries? Why wasn’t Dominique telling me how beautiful he was and Scorpius congratulating me on proving him right? Something was wrong.

On that realisation, I shot up in the bed again, looking around in a panic. Dom was standing beside the bed, looking not at me, but at the other side of the room, with her hand over her mouth.

I looked the where she was staring, and my heart skipped a beat. There were two more Healers in the room, who along with Mary were gathered around something. My eyes flickered to Scorpius, who was watching them with tears in his eyes.

“What’s happening?” I asked. “What’s wrong with him?”

“He’s not breathing,” said Mary, without looking up. “It was the umbilical chord.”

It felt right then as if my entire body had frozen. All I felt was the cold, paralysing fear that I’d never knew it was possible to feel. Scorpius was suddenly beside me again, with his arms around me, and I clutched him in terror. Dominique took one look at us and rushed out of the room with a face full of tears.

“Is he okay?” I whispered to the Healers.

None of them answered. I closed my eyes as my shoulders started to shake. I had to hold it together. I was a Mum now.

“Please,” Said Scorpius. “Please make him better.”

I buried my head against his chest and he kissed my hair, crying silently.

It felt like we sat there for ten years, holding each other, watching the three Healers working over our silent son. But then Mary spoke, and suddenly my icy insides were flooded with warmth.

“He’s breathing,” She said, shakily. “He’s okay.”

“Are you sure?” I cried.

“I’m sure,” she said, cleaning him up and wrapping him in a blanket.

“Can I see him?” I asked, still holding on to Scorpius.

“Of course you can,” She said, setting him into my arms. “He’s your son.”

I looked down at him tearfully. He was tiny, and weighed nothing. And yet he looked healthy. His face was round and perfect, and his brown eyes were open and startled looking. He had a tiny, beautiful nose and cheeks and a mouth. He was perfect.

“Hi,” I whispered. “Hi baby boy. I’m your Mum...and I know you.”

I smiled at him, feeling as if I would never want to let him go. “And this is your Dad.” I said, smiling up at Scorpius.

“I’m your Dad,” He nodded, tearfully. “Don’t ever scare us like that again, okay buddy?”

Scorpius leaned down to press his lips gently to the baby’s forehead, before looking at me.

“I love you so much,” He whispered.

I nodded, and leaned in to kiss him for a second. I pulled away, looking back down at the baby. I never wanted to stop looking at him for the rest of my life.

There was a light knock at the door, and Dom was back, crying.

“Is he okay?” She asked.

I nodded. “He’s perfect. Do you want to meet your Godson?”

“Yes!” she exclaimed, looking down at him. “He’s so beautiful. You two have made a little heartbreaker.”

I grinned down at him. “Hear that? Aunt Dom thinks you’re beautiful.”

“So does my godson have a name?” She asked, looking from me to Scorpius.

We looked at each other and he nodded.

“Yes,” I said. I looked back at the baby, into his big, brown eyes.

“Welcome to the world, Connor James Weasley.”

*

 

A/N Your thoughts and opinions are more important now than ever before guys. I only have one more chapter left, so if there's anything you've been hoping to happen, let me know now before its too late!
 


Chapter 39: This Is Only The Beginning
[View Online]  [Printer Friendly Version of This Chapter]

A/N For the very last time, enjoy....

*

“You like crying, don’t you?” I muttered, fastening the new nappy onto Connor. His little face was dark pink from crying, but now he was calm.

I picked him up from the changing table and held him close to me, savouring the warmth and the smell of him.

“Well I hate to break it to you, but we’re not done yet.”

Considering the size of my family, Connor was always going to be getting a lot of visitors. However, this just took it to a new level. I sighed as I heard Scorpius greeting yet another well-wisher in the hall, and decided we better get back out there.

“Remember just because your family are all crazy, it doesn’t mean you have to be,” I told him, stroking his head softly. “You can’t pick your family,” I whispered, peering round the bedroom door, and then sighed.

“Of course, your Dad and I did pick our friends, and for that I can only apologise.”

I smiled down at Connor and he stared back at me curiously. Every time I looked at him, I felt as though my heart would break. Four days in and already I just adored him; it was indescribable. For someone who hadn’t wanted a baby, it now felt as though we had planned him, I genuinely couldn’t imagine life without him anymore.

“Oh here he is, my beautiful little grandson!” Exclaimed Mum, as I returned. She placed a kiss on my cheek, and one on the top of Connor’s head.

I beamed at her and Dad, who gave me an encouraging smile. They were both just so happy, and Scorpius had said he thought it was coming from me. He said I was so happy right now that it was infectious.

“Rose!” Called a voice from the other side of the room. I raised my eyebrows at Mum, who shrugged, and then turned around to face the visitor.

“Beth,” I said, smiling. “How are you?”

“I’m great but how are you?” She asked. “Connor is absolutely beautiful!”

“Thanks,” I replied. “I’m amazing, a little tired but I’m getting used to it!”

“Yeah, well you certainly will.” She laughed.

Scorpius suddenly cut in, snaking an arm around my waist and kissing me on the cheek. “Can I have my son for a while? I’m beginning to think he’s glued to you!”

I laughed. “He’s only four days old! He needs me! But yes, you can have him for a bit.” I said, carefully handing Connor to Scorpius.

“I’m glad I’ve got you on your own, actually,” Beth said. “Can we talk in private?”

I deliberated for a second, but my overwhelming joy got the better of me and I nodded. “So what’s up?” I asked, when we were back in mine and Scorpius’ bedroom.

“James told me that you know about what happened,” She said. “And I just wanted to make sure you didn’t think badly of me…”

I shrugged. “Look Beth, these things happen and it’s really nothing to do with me.”

“I know, but I just wouldn’t want to think your opinion of me has worsened or anything.” She continued.

“Well,” I said frowning. “It hasn’t honestly. Beth I don’t judge you for having a one night stand with the father of your daughter; apart from anything else, you’re both single! The thing that made my opinion of you worsen was the way you behaved towards James…trying to take Emma away to Italy and everything else.”

“You don’t understand….” She began.

“At the time you said I didn’t understand because I wasn’t a Mum,” I said. “And I was able to agree with that. But now I have a child of my own. And honestly, I’ve only had Connor for four days but already he is my entire life, I would do anything for him and I will always put his needs first. But I’ve also seen how much Scorpius loves him…he would honestly lay down his life for Connor. And I can’t imagine ever trying to take them away from each other.”

She nodded, and I was suddenly shocked to see tears in her eyes.

“I’m not proud…of the way I behaved,” She whispered. “I’m ashamed. More than anything I’m ashamed of the person I’ve become. And the way I’ve lost you, and the girls. I never saw my life turning out like this and…I miss you, Rose!”

“I miss you too,” I whispered, only realising it in that moment. Because it had suddenly hit me; I did miss Beth. I missed the good person she was; I missed her loyalty, and her nature. I missed her.

“Do you think there’s any way we can ever get back to the way it was?” She asked me.

Before I could answer, there was a light knock at the door, and in came Megan, Dom, and Sophie.

“Well here we are again, the fab five,” Grinned Dominique.

I smiled around at them. “You know what? I definitely think we can get back to the way it was…let’s be honest I’m going to need you all around as I try to raise a baby! And I miss the way we all were…”

“So we’re agreed,” Said Megan. “The fabulous five are back in action?”

Sophie grinned. “You can bet on it.”

The door burst open again, and Allie came running in, looking up at us curiously.

“What’s going on?” She asked, frowning.

“We were just talking about when we were younger,” Said Megan, lifting her up. “When we were at Hogwarts we all stayed in a dorm together and we were best friends. And we still are.”

Allie looked excited. “Can I be best friends with you all too?”

“Of course,” Beth said at once.

“Yeah, we can be the super six!” Joked Dom. “Rose, you should get back out there, that’s what I was coming in to tell you; the Malfoys are here.”

I laughed. “Well this should be fun. Draco’s probably got Connor in a Slytherin bib already!”

I found Draco and Astoria in the corner with Scorpius, who was still holding Connor. They seemed horribly separate from everyone, and it made me uncomfortable; all of my friends and family were together…

“Rose!” Exclaimed Astoria, as I appeared. “I just can’t get enough of Connor, he is too precious!”

 I smiled. “He has that effect, it seems. Why don’t you hold him? I don’t think you got a chance at the hospital, did you?”

Scorpius smiled at me gratefully, before passing our son to his mother. Astoria and Draco beamed down at him, and I couldn’t help but smile at them.

“Connor,” Astoria cooed. “It’s Connor James, isn’t it? That’s lovely, your cousin must have been thrilled.”

“He was,” I agreed. “It was hard choosing between him and Albus who should be godfather, but ultimately Al is Scorpius’ best friend so it made more sense. We just wanted James to be involved, and it seemed like the best way.”

“And the surname…” Said Draco, looking slightly disappointed. “Is Weasley.”

I sighed, and Scorpius shook his head.

“Yeah Dad, like his Mum.”

“I’m not saying anything!” He said defensively. “But do you think you would ever consider Malfoy?”

“I don’t know,” I said, shrugging. “As far as I’m concerned my name is Weasley, and therefore so is Connor’s. If my name changes…so will his.”

Astoria nodded. “Let’s hope one day there will be need,” She said, suggestively. “I have to admit I would love to see you two married.”

Scorpius laughed. “Well don’t look at me! She doesn’t want to get married.”

“Why?” Asked Astoria, looking put out. “Surely you would love to make it all official.”

“One day, maybe,” I said. “But for now we have Connor, and we love each other…I think that’s official enough. Scorpius and I don’t need a bit of paper to prove our commitment to each other. The last seven years is enough proof for a lifetime!”

“Oh, your Mum’s coffee is finished Rose,” Said Scorpius, suddenly. “I’ll make her another.”

I always loved when Scorpius left me alone with his parents. Not.

“Please don’t think it means I love Scorpius any less,” I said honestly. “I love him with all my heart, but for me marriage is just not a consideration right now. Maybe one day.”

They both nodded. “I don’t think we can deny you love Scorpius, Rose.” Said Draco quietly, looking over to where Scorpius was laughing with my Mum. “But given fairly recent history…it’s just a sensitive subject, and for Connor to be named a Weasley-”

“Please,” I interrupted. “Mr Malfoy, not to be disrespectful, but I don’t want to hear about when you and my Dad used to pull each other’s hair a million years ago. As far as I’m concerned, the Malfoys are a part of my family now, and the Weasley’s are a part of Scorpius’…and if anyone can’t accept that then it’s just too bad.”

He smiled. “How did my son get so lucky?”

I returned his warm smile. “I ask myself the same thing everyday,” I joked, as Astoria handed Connor back to me. “Look, I know its weird for you, but I’m sure nobody will say anything if you want to mingle a bit more.”

“We will, Rose,” Said Astoria, nodding. “We have years to fawn over Connor!”

“I’m confused,” Whispered a voice in my ear. Scorpius was back. “Was that just my Mum and Dad walking towards your family, smiling broadly?”

I shrugged. “Wonders never cease. And didn’t you know I am amazing with parents, even yours?”

He grinned at me, and leaned down to kiss me lightly. “Your Mum is just amazing in general Connor,” He muttered, smiling at the baby.

I smiled, holding him closer to me as his eyes started to close slowly, and his breathing slowed, as he fell asleep in my arms.

“Well, I’ve got to say it,” Scorpius said, kissing my shoulder. “If this was the point in all the fighting and heartache and drama we’ve gone through, if it was all necessary to
get us to today, and to get Connor to us, I don’t regret a second of it.”

I nodded; I completely knew what he meant. I now realised, that all those years of my life I’d spent wondering whether Scorpius was the one for me, I had been blind. He was the one for me, because regardless of anything that might happen to us, we had Connor now. And that made it all worth it.

“Is it really possible for everything to turn out this perfect?” Scorpius asked me, as we both looked on at our son and our family, together and happy.

I leaned against him, holding Connor tightly to my chest.

“You know Scorp, this time I think it is.”

*

One year, two months, and three weeks later.

Summer seemed to come around with a speed none of us had foreseen that year. Whether it was the passing of Connor’s first birthday, or the celebration of all of us turning a year older, or simply the fast-paced build up to the wedding, none of us could be certain. But it seemed as soon as the last thickets of snow had fallen, the sun was already shining, and the big day was upon us.

It was a scorcher, even early in the morning as the bridal party all got ready in the crowded hotel. I found myself casting cooling charms between getting my hair and make-up done, only to have Ginny scream at me about wrinkling the dress.

When we finally arrived at the church, every guest was already filing into their seats in the pews while we waited outside, caught up in a rushed flurry of bouquets and last minute lipgloss-applying.

As the doors to the church swung open and the first note of music announced our cue, I took a deep breath, fanned myself once more, and smoothed down my dress. I began my walk down the aisle slowly, keeping my eyes on the hem of Lily’s dress in front of me so I would stay in a straight line while I walked.

The ceremony was pleasant, and not too over the top. I couldn’t help but tear my eyes away to look at Connor, sitting perfectly in my Mum’s arms in the front row. He smiled back at me, and I blew him a kiss.

I looked back to the minister, who was talking about the strength of love, and how this love had never let anything beat it. The words were perfect.

My eyes found Scorpius, heart-breakingly handsome in his suit, with the big, cream rose in his buttonhole, and I winked at him. He rolled his eyes, stifling a laugh.

“Love is, in effect, the greatest force we have ever seen.” Said the minister, smiling genuinely. “The love this man and woman feel towards each other is clear to see; it is a love that could be pushed to the ends of the earth, and remain intact. And it is a love that will last, undoubtedly, until the end of time.”

He looked to the right, and said the historical, renowned words with pleasure;

“You may kiss your bride.”

I let out a huge cheer along with the rest of the congregation, as Albus grinned and wrapped his arms around Frankie’s waist, kissing her passionately. I started clapping with Lily and Frankie’s best friend, Sarah, my fellow bridesmaids.

James and Scorpius led the applause, still standing by Al’s side as best man and usher, and the guests stood up in cheer as the new couple smiled around at us, holding hands and looking ecstatic.

It had been the perfect day.

*

“And I would also like to point out, that Frankie Potter is far too good-looking, smart, sophisticated, and just generally cool to ever genuinely want to marry my brother,” Said James, half an hour later at the reception. “So she clearly has mental problems and we should pity the pair of them.”

Everyone laughed and he smiled over at Al and Frankie, who were shaking their heads, trying not to smile.

“But in all seriousness,” James continued, his glass still in hand. “I’m not just the best man, I’m the groom’s brother, and I like to think I know him pretty well. And I know for certain that in the years he’s been with Frankie, he’s become happier than you’d ever think possible. So I suppose I should thank the bride, for making my little brother eternally happy. To Albus and Frankie!”

“To Albus and Frankie!” We all chorused, sipping our champagne. 

Now that the speeches were over with, and the meals were done it meant everyone could get up and mingle, and in the bride and groom’s case, take their first dance.

Hugo left the table he’d been sitting at with my Mum and Dad, and made his way to the stage with his band. Not only did it mean a lot for Al to have his cousin play at his wedding, but due to Hugo’s celebrity status these days he had been absolutely hounded by paparazzi upon his entrance to the reception, giving Al the opportunity to throw in a good punch to one of them. We all knew Al would be eternally grateful for the opportunity.

After checking on Connor, who was being looked after by Mum while I tended to my bridesmaid duties, I went to find one person in particular.

Allie giggled again as I spun her around on the dance floor, clutching my hands tightly.

“I think you could give your Mum and me a run for our money with those moves!” I said, as we shimmied about together.

“I’m going to be a dancer when I grow up!” She told me, as the song ended.

“Really?” I said. “Six years old and you know what you’re going to be, well Allie that is impressive!”

“What do you think Connor will be when he grows up?” She asked me, as we took seats at Megan and Stevie’s table.

I smiled. “I’m not sure, since he’s only one he can’t tell me yet. But I do know you’ll be his best, most favourite Auntie in the world.” I said, kissing her forehead.

She grinned. “I’m an Auntie to Connor and I’m going to be a big sister!”

Megan rolled her eyes. “Allie sweetheart, I think Aunt Rose has noticed my great big tummy a while ago!”

“You’ll be the best big sister in the world,” I told her.

“Care to dance with someone your own size?” said a familiar voice from behind me.

I spun around, grinning at Albus. “Yeah!” I said, jumping up.

“Well this is nice,” He said, as we revolved slowly on the busy dance floor. “Let’s just hope my wife doesn’t get jealous.”

I laughed. “I’m so happy for you Al,” I told him. “Honestly, this has been an amazing day.”

“I owe you a lot,” he said. “When you made me Connor’s godfather, it really gave me some responsibility; made me grow up. And I just realised I wanted to be with Frankie forever.”

“Well I’m glad to have been such a good influence on you,” I said. “And Connor loves his Uncle Al. I’m proud of you Albus Potter.”

He nodded. “We’ve really been through it all together, haven’t we Rosie?”

“Yeah we have,” I said, smiling, and yet feeling slightly nostalgic.

“I’m glad I had you with me, along for the ride.” He said, hugging me.

I nodded. “I couldn’t have done it without you.”

As the night went on, I socialised and danced with everyone. I had already had a turn with James, my Dad, and Steven, when Scorpius found me sitting bouncing Connor on my knee with Dom at my side.

“Are you ever going to dance with me?” He asked, laughing.

“Yes, she will!” Said Dom. “And I will take my godson, the most beautiful baby in the world!” She added, taking Connor from me with a look of pure adoration. Dominique lived for Connor.

“I know I’m a poor substitute for the dance styling of your Dad,” Scorpius said, as we both glanced over at my Dad and Harry trying to dance cool to one of the band’s faster tracks. “But I’m glad you’re dancing with me in the end.”

I laughed. “Well this is where I belong. I do love you a bit, you know.”

“I guess I might like you a tiny bit too,” He said, grinning. He lowered his head and I leaned in to kiss him, when we were interrupted by the piercing cries of Connor.

“I’m sorry,” Said Dom, holding him while he squirmed in her arms. “I think he wants one of you.”

“I’ve got him,” Said Scorpius, taking him expertly and walking him out to the entrance, bouncing him lightly.

“I hate to interrupt a kiss,” She said, smiling.

I shrugged, laughing. “We’re used to it; Connor has really bad timing. And I’m honestly still taking in the sight of you, at our cousin’s wedding, with the guy I had an almost wedding to.” I said, looking over at Mark, who was chatting to Bill.

She laughed, looking at him too. “I know. But you can’t help who you love, can you? And maybe you and Mark only met so that, eventually, he and I would find each other.”

“Yeah,” I said, nodding. “Though that is three men now that we’ve shared.”

She winced. “Three! Mark, Scorp and Carson. I really don’t think we need to count Carson.”

“And then there was the night I shagged Max-the-arsehole,” I joked.

“Shut up!” She laughed.

“I am just kidding,” I said, taking her hand. “You and Mark work in a way that he and I never did. You make him happy. And I am so glad that you’ve finally got your happy ending.”

“Me too,” She said. “Who’d have thought when we were sitting in our little flat, eating ice cream in the middle of the night wondering why we were single, that we’d end up here?”

“Not us anyway,” I laughed.

“Speaking of things you don’t expect,” She said, catching my arm. “What is the deal with those two?”

I turned round and sighed. James was holding Emma on his shoulders, laughing with her, while Beth stood beside them, looking on proudly.

“I don’t know,” I admitted. “James is scared of letting her make him vulnerable, and he is scared that she’ll prove him wrong and be the person we all thought she was. But they have got together so many times in the last year…I think we just have to watch this space.”

“They do have some amount of chemistry, I’ll say that for them,” Dominique said. “You never know.”

“True,” I agreed. “And I once said the same thing about Megan and Stevie, and look at them now.”

“Oh we’re all growing up!” She exclaimed, hugging me. “It’s kind of sad!”

“It is,” I said, as Scorpius returned, crouching down to allow Connor to walk to us, holding him securely.

Dominique beamed down at him and crouched to his level, pulling him to herself tightly and kissing his soft, blonde hair.

“All better,” Scorpius muttered. “Now about that kiss…”

“What would I do without you?” I laughed, pressing my lips to his at last.

He held my hand as we kissed, and I felt his finger run over the slim, diamond ring concealed on my own.

“You have no idea how amazing it feels to have you wearing that,” He muttered. “Even if you are hiding it. What about tonight?”

“Not tonight,” I disagreed. “I don’t want to take attention away from Al and Frankie; it’s their day. We can announce the engagement soon; tomorrow if you want!”

“I suppose I could wait,” He smiled. “After you finally said yes, I don’t care what I have to do.”

I shrugged, grinning up at him. “Well I thought somebody should put the ring on, it’s been rolling around your sock drawer for years.”

He nodded. “We really made it, didn’t we?”

“We did,” I agreed, resting my head on his shoulder as we swayed gently to the music.

If there was one thing my life had taught me, it was the importance of never giving up hope. And never giving up on fate. I had realised long ago that Scorpius Malfoy was my destiny; he had made me the person I was, he gave me Connor, and he had made me believe in the immeasurable strength of true love.

And I would love him, unconditionally, till my last breath.

Till kingdom come.

*

 

A/N And that's it. A journey complete! I really hope everyone is happy with the ending - I am. I can't believe the story is over, it feels bizarre to not be just leaving a little "Thanks for reading" until the next chapter. Because there is no next chapter, sob! Thanks to:

- JK Rowling, of course. This amazing writer planted the seeds for my story, and I am eternally grateful.

- Chris Martin, who wrote the song that inspired a novel. Till Kingdom Come is one of the most beautiful songs I have ever heard, and that chance playing of it one night on my laptop literally made me want to write the story, and inspired every word.

- The site. HPFF is unwaveringly brilliant, and the staff who run the site honestly don't get enough credit.

- And finally, but most importantly, I thank you. This story is dedicated to every person who has taken the time to leave a review and read the story. From the people who followed me from Temptation to Till Kingdom Come, to the people who just stumbled across it by chance - thank you. Without your reviews, I wouldn't have continued, there is no doubt about that. Words cannot describe how much I appreciate every one of you.

So what's next? I think that my time writing about Rose and Scorpius has come to an end, as sad as it makes me. I never intended to write a sequel to Temptation, but I was desperate for more; I wanted to explore their lives past Hogwarts, and I feel I've done that. Now, I can leave them the way I've ended this and be happy with it.

And so that means that for the first time in two and a half years, I am officially NOT writing! I have written a first chapter to a possible novel about Dean Thomas while he was on the run, which is obviously very different from the stuff I've done in the past. I may publish that, but for the time being I'm a dormant author. I look forward to sitting down and reading some of YOUR fan fiction. It's been a while.

Once again, my thanks to all of you. I hope you've enjoyed the story; it's been an absolute priviledge to share it with you. Katy x
 


http://www.harrypotterfanfiction.com