Chapter 16 : Secrets and Cigarettes
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Chapter 16 - Secrets and Cigarettes
Dom didn’t return to the dormitory until after I’d fallen asleep and when I woke up, she was already gone down to breakfast. It’s almost as if she’s avoiding me. I’m quite thankful for that – I mean, what do I even say to her? I’m contemplating talking to Mark about this, but that may not be such a good idea either. After all, I wasn’t supposed to be listening to that conversation. I may just erase my own memory, make everything simpler.
The Common Room is empty except for Lily and Lorcan. It seems Lorcan spends more time up here than he does in the Slytherin dungeons. I smile and wave on my way past them, but I don’t stop to chat as I make my way out of the portrait hole and down to breakfast. Everyone in the Great Hall seems to have their attention focused on the Gryffindor table – on my cousin, in fact. James is standing – yes, standing – on the Gryffindor table, looking very annoyingly smug. That can’t be hygienic – Merlin only knows where those feet have been.
“Oi! Listen up!” he yells to everyone around him, though he needn’t have bothered because everyone’s attentions are on him anyway, “I have an announcement to make!”
He reaches down and pulls Laura Phelps by the hand and lifts her up onto the table beside him. I finger my wand in my pocket, because I swear to Merlin if he proposes, I’m going to jinx the pair of them. Laura is glowing and looks extremely excited.
“Laura,” he declares, “I’m dumping you!”
The colour drains from her pretty face and her mouth drops open in shock, as does mine. Some girls cheer, some guys howl, but mostly people are laughing. Laura jumps down from the table, hides her face in her hands and runs from the Great Hall. James looks extremely proud of himself. He then jumps down from the table, high-fives a couple of people and bounces over to me, grinning.
“Hey Red!” he exclaims, “Are you proud of me? This was the plan all along. I’m getting her back for being such a b–”
I slap him, hard, across the face.
“You evil little bollocks!” I shriek, “How could you do that to her?”
“I thought you hated her!” James cries, rubbing his now red cheek.
“I’m not her biggest fan,” I admit, “Of course she was a bitch for what she did to me. But I know what it feels like to be dumped in front of the whole school and it’s not fun, James! I wouldn’t wish it on anyone! Do you have to be so bloody thoughtless all the time?”
I storm out of the Great Hall, ignoring James’s shouts. I rush back upstairs to the common room, where Lily and Lorcan are now snogging and don’t even notice me running by them. Laura is in the dormitory, as I suspected she would be. She shoots me a malicious glare as soon as I walk in.
“Get out of here!” she cries. She’s flopped onto her bed and there are tears running down her face – and I feel sorry for her. I know I shouldn’t feel sorry for her after everything she’s done. She’s a two faced, scheming little bitch who hangs out with those stupid slutty seventh years who say ‘O…M…G’ after every single sentence and try to flirt with Professor Davies. I should really be trying to eradicate the likes of her, but no. I’m feeling sorry for her.
“Laura I –”
“I have to hand it to you Weasley,” she interrupts me, “You’re a lot more evil than I gave you credit for. Who knew you could play dirty?”
“You think I was in on that?” I exclaim, “Laura, I had no idea what his plan was!”
“Yeah right. You’ve hated me ever since I told everyone you’re pregnant.”
“Actually I hated you long before that,” I admit coldly, “But I still wouldn’t do it to you. I know what it’s like to be humiliated in front of the whole school. It’s not nice, is it?”
She raises an eyebrow.
“Why are you here?” she asks suspiciously.
“I wanted to make sure you’re okay,” I shrug, “We’re not all as cold-hearted as you, you know.”
“But you hate me,” she says.
“And you hate me,” I reply, “But I don’t hate you enough to humiliate you in front of the whole school. That’s the difference between us.”
She pauses for a moment and then adds:
“And I have nicer hair.”
She can never resist getting a dig in. I have to say, she looks sort of guilty. I turn around and leave her in the dorm without saying another word to her. I go to the library to do some homework and don’t even bother getting breakfast. I’ll pop down to the kitchens later on. I get started on my Ancient Runes essay that has to be in for tomorrow. As soon as I put the quill to the parchment, Malfoy slides down onto the chair beside mine. Suddenly my heart is pounding furiously – I feel so guilty in his presence. Should I tell him? I know it’s not my place but –
“Hey Fatty,” he grins. I frown at him.
“You should know better than to call a pregnant girl ‘Fatty’, Blondie. I’ll sit on you,” I threaten.
“Please don’t, I quite like my legs,” he says and I punch him on the arm.
“Someone’s in a mood,” he observes, rubbing his arm, “I’m the second bloke you’ve punched today and it’s only eleven.”
“James deserved it,” I scowl.
“If you say so,” Malfoy shrugs, “I thought you didn’t like Laura since she so brutally blurted out about Kiefer –”
“Who or what the hell is Kiefer?” I ask.
“Kiefer!” he says, pointing to my stomach, “The baby!”
“That baby is not going to be called Kiefer!” I exclaim loudly, and earn some dirty glares from the librarian.
“Kiefer’s a pretty funky name, Weasley, you have to admit,” he grins.
“Kiefer Weasley…no, definitely not,” I say.
“How about Kiefer Malfoy?”
“That’s even worse,” I laugh.
“Fine, have you any suggestions?”
I shake my head.
“Malfoy…you know I’m not even sure if I’m going to keep it,” I say softly.
“I know,” he says sadly, “But…just so you know…I’ll be there if you do.”
That’s not what your father said.
“I’m just so confused,” I admit, “I don’t know what to do.”
Malfoy places his chin down on his folded arms on the table and sighs heavily, causing his floppy blonde hair to flicker out of his face and back down again. I begin my Ancient Runes essay and Malfoy stays where he is. I almost wish he’d go – the longer he stays the more obliged I am to tell him what I heard between Mark and Dom.
After a while, he pulls some books out of his bag and starts on his own homework. This isn’t unusual for us. Ever since we decided to be friends instead of enemies turned lovers turned enemies again, we tend to meet up in the library to study. We don’t really plan it that way, it just happens. I help him with his Transfiguration (which he’s crap at) and he helps me with Charms (even though I need no help – I’m Hermione Weasley’s daughter after all).
“I think I’m going to go find Dom,” he whispers after about an hour. I nod, trying to keep a guilty look off my face. He packs up his stuff and pats me on the shoulder before striding off out of the library. A small groan escapes me and I start banging my forehead gently off the table.
“Are you alright?” I hear a timid, yet prim voice from behind me. I slowly lift my head up and turn around to see who’s there. It’s John Lawson – or ‘Library Man’ – and he looks supremely worried. I can’t really blame him. I’ve officially passed the mental line. In fact, I can’t even see the mental line because it’s so far behind me. He’s standing there with his book clasped tightly in his hands, his shirt buttoned the full way up and yellow tie tied perfectly. His light brown hair is brushed to the side with a very clear parting, his square glasses are sliding down his large, pointed nose and he’s blinking rapidly. It’s a sad day when Library Man is asking if I’m okay.
“Oh yes,” I assure him, “I’m fine.”
He pushes his glasses up and blinks again.
“You – you were banging your head off the table,” he says, as if I didn’t know.
“Yes,” I say, “I was just thinking.”
He raises his eyebrows and instead of reassuring him, this information seems to disturb him more.
“Was that Slytherin boy bothering you?” he asks.
Now it’s my turn to raise my eyebrows. Is this kid for real? Has he been living under a rock for the last two months? Surely he knows that I’m carrying the child of ‘that Slytherin boy’?
“No,” I say, “that was just Malfoy.”
“I saw you hit him,” says Library Man, “I just thought –”
“Oh no, I was just joking,” I say. This bloke has serious problems.
“I see,” he nods, “That’s good. I was wondering if you could help me.”
I signal for him to take a seat beside me and he reluctantly and awkwardly does so. He sets his book down and wrings his hands nervously.
“What can I do for you?” I ask.
“W-well…I was wondering if your cousin was single,” he says quickly.
I raise my eyebrows. How on earth does Dom get so many blokes? (Oh yes, she’s part Veela – that’d explain it).
“You mean Dom? Well she’s actually seeing someone,” I say. Actually, she’s seeing two people, so maybe she’d like a third.
“No I don’t mean her,” he says.
“Oh…Lily?” I ask, thinking that she’s way too young for this guy – he’s a seventh year after all.
“It’s your other cousin. With the red hair.”
Yes, that narrows it down.
“You don’t mean…Molly?” I ask, in such shock that I don’t even bother masking my surprise. His eyes light up and he nods, while blushing. I don’t know why I didn’t think of her – I suppose I always thought of Percy’s lot as being very asexual. I mean, I know Molly was dating a squib a while back, but I still just don’t ever imagine people liking her. I don’t even like her and I’m related to her. She’s just about the most annoying person in the world.
“Of course she’s single!” I can’t help but splutter. It takes all of my mental strength not to say ‘why wouldn’t she be?’
“Splendid,” he smiles nervously. Only someone who likes Molly would ever say the word ‘splendid’ while not taking the piss. With that, he gives me a short nod and retreats back to his table in the corner of the library, where I’m fairly sure he was born. That was one of the strangest experiences I’ve ever had in this library.
I pack up my stuff, out of the fear that one more person is going to corner me and ask about one of my cousins’ relationship statuses. I’m sick of being the matchmaker all of the time. Do I look warm and approachable? Because, honestly, that’s not the vibe I’m going for. I leave the library very confused and most of my homework isn’t even started yet. I meet Dom on the way to the Great Hall for lunch. She grins and waves me over, so I don’t think there’s any chance that I can run away without her noticing.
“Where’ve you been all day?” she asks nonchalantly, as if she’s not cheating on her boyfriend with Mark Matthews.
“Knitting!” I exclaim and she looks at me as if I’m gone completely mental.
“You’ve been…knitting,” says Dom, eyebrows raised.
“No,” I say, my voice more high pitched than usual, “Just…I forgot…I need to go somewhere.”
I take off in the opposite direction towards the front doors of the castle. I decide to go for a walk around the grounds. I consider going down to Hagrid’s, but I don’t particularly want to talk to anyone. I just have to figure out what I’m going to do about this Dom/Mark/Malfoy love triangle. Well, really, it’s none of my business, right? It’s up to Dom to choose between the two. I can just continue on as normal and pretend I never heard anything. And maybe in twenty years time when it all comes out I’ll just forget it ever happened. Yes, that sounds like a good plan.
There’s one place in the grounds that I love to sit and think at – The Memorial Statue. It’s a massive phoenix statue that was erected by the lake a year after the Second Wizarding War ended and it displays the name of everyone who died in the first and second war. I wander over to the statue, which stands around thirty feet in the air, and trace my fingers over the names until I find the name ‘Fred Weasley – OOTP’. I sit down on front of the statue and curl up to keep warm. Underneath Fred’s name are “Remus J Lupin” and “Nymphadora Tonks-Lupin” – Ted’s parents. Then at the bottom of all of the names is “Harry Potter – The Boy Who Saved.” Harry’s always hated the fact that they put his name on the stone – he insists that he didn’t defeat Voldemort, that Voldemort’s selfishness and hatred proved to be his own undoing. The man’s too modest for his own good. I think he needs therapy.
I don’t know how long I spend staring at the statue and reading the many names that are engraved in gold onto it. I do this quite often, so I practically know the order of names. I always smile at ‘Dobby the House Elf’ because I remember how much trouble Mum, Dad and Harry went to to get Dobby’s name on there. I suppose it’s only fair. House Elves are living beings just like the rest of us. His name was only added a few years ago. I’m so entranced by the statue that I barely even notice someone sit down beside me.
“Are you not freezing your bollocks off out here?” Mark asks.
I look at him, narrow my eyes, and turn back to the statue.
“Did I do something wrong?” he asks, looking confused.
“You know you did,” I say quietly.
“Erm – sorry Rosie but you’ve lost me,” he says.
“I can’t believe you’re denying it,” I whisper, letting out a bitter laugh.
“Denying what? I haven’t the foggiest –”
“You and Dom!” I exclaim, “That’s what I’m talking about!”
Mark’s eyes widen. He opens his mouth to say something, but closes it again.
“She told you?”
“No,” I say, “I heard you. Now I know why you wanted me to be with Malfoy so much.”
“Rosie, that’s not why –”
“A couple of months ago, I probably would have been delighted at this you know,” I admit, feeling sort of ashamed, “But now I’m just disgusted – with both of you! Malfoy’s not a bad person and he likes Dom…what did he ever do to you? What did he do to deserve this?”
Mark has the decency to look ashamed and doesn’t meet my gaze. He just stares up at the phoenix memorial statue.
“I’m not trying to get back at Malfoy for anything,” he said gravely, “It’s just – I’ve always liked Dom, y’know? And she’s happier with me – she’s not supposed to be with him.”
“I don’t think that’s your place to judge!” I say furiously, “Why did you have to go and meddle in their relationship?”
Yes, this is the pot calling the kettle black – after all, Malfoy and I kissed back at New Years. But that was nothing. It was a spur of the moment thing and we’re completely past that now. It’s not like we were having some sort of illicit affair or anything. I still have the moral high ground.
“I’ve asked her to tell him,” says Mark, “But she says she doesn’t want to hurt him.”
“Don’t you think it’ll hurt him more the longer this goes on?” I press, “He has the right to know. You’re making a fool out of him. He’s my friend –”
“Please,” Mark scoffs, “Don’t give me the ‘friend’ routine. Malfoy’s not your friend."
“What’s that supposed to mean?” I ask in outrage.
“It means that you and Malfoy can pretend for as long as you like that you’re ‘just friends’, but no matter what you’ll never change the fact that you’re pregnant with his child, Rosie. You’ll always have that connection. And that’s why Dom and Malfoy will never be right for each other.”
I pull myself up off the ground (which is no easy feat when you’re pregnant) and storm off towards the castle ignoring Mark as he calls after me. It’s a bad time to find Hugo outside smoking with his friends – a really bad time. But he’s there, smoking away, trying to look cool. I march up to him and grab him by his newly pierced ear.
“HUGO!” I scream.
He looks absolutely mortified, but scared at the same time.
“Detention, all of you,” I exclaim and extinguish the cigarettes with my wand, “And I’m telling Mum.”
Hugo’s eyes widen, but he doesn’t want to lose face in front of his friends.
“Seriously Rose, you can’t tell Mum,” he says under his breath to me, “You just can’t. She’ll kill me.”
“Good! You’re an idiot!”
“Aw leave poor Psycho alone,” says one of Hugo’s friends. He’s a fat bloke with pink hair and he’s missing a front tooth – charming I’m sure. And he, apparently, calls my brother ‘Psycho’. What ever happened to little Hugo who used to love playing Quidditch with Dad and sitting on Mum’s knee as she brushed his hair? When did that Hugo become a black-haired, over-pierced ‘Psycho’?
“Get back to your common rooms, now,” I exclaim. I then notice a slightly short Ravenclaw at the back of the group. He’s the only one who has maintained his natural blonde hair colour – it’s Louis.
“You’re not getting away that easy!” I scream when I see him try to creep away.
“I wasn’t smoking!” he insists, “I was just –”
“What’s that then?” I ask, pointing to his pocket that’s clearly bulging with a rectangular shaped box, “Empty your pockets now.”
He empties his pockets of the box of cigarettes, a few dungbombs and his wand. Louis was always so quiet. What happens to these Weasley boys when they hit fourteen?
“They’re not mine,” he says quickly, “Please don’t tell Dom. She’ll beat me!"
“You’re lucky I haven’t beaten you Louis Weasley!” I exclaim and he looks positively frightened. I confiscate the cigarettes and the dungbombs off Louis and tell him to get back to his Common Room. I then point my wand at the rest of the group who are making their way back towards the castle.
“Accio cigarettes!” I exclaim and five boxes of Muggle cigarettes come flying towards me. They all shoot me dirty glares, but none of them have the nerve to say anything.
“Wow, I’m glad you never caught me smoking in third year,” I hear a voice say from behind me, “You’re a hard ass.”
I turn around to see Malfoy grinning down at me, clearly amused by the spectacle that has just taken place.
“My brother is such a – a – a –”
“Fuckwit? Yeah, we all are at that age. He probably won’t grow out of it ‘til he’s well into his twenties,” says Malfoy shrugging.
“At least you never died your hair black and pierced your lip!” I cry, starting to walk back towards the school.
“I could never do that to the hair,” he says, running his hand through it, “And how do you know I never got a piercing?”
I look up at him and raise my eyebrows.
“You got a piercing?”
“Sure – but it’s not in a place I generally display to the public,” he winks.
“Oh Merlin, that’s disgusting!” I exclaim, showing my repulsion on my face.
“Now now Miss Weasley you’ve got a dirty mind,” he laughs, “It wasn’t there. But it’s good to know that’s the first place you think of!”
I blush furiously and he just laughs at me and throws a friendly arm around my shoulders.
“So…where did you get pierced?” I ask, though I’m not sure if I really want to know.
“Well – me and Al decided that we were going to get something pierced back in third year – we wanted to do something rebellious,” he says, grinning, “So we made a pact that if one of us was going to do it, the other would have to too in the exact same place.”
“So Al has a piercing too?” I ask in astonishment, “Does Aunt Ginny know?”
“I doubt it,” says Malfoy, “Unless he goes around showing his mum his nipples.”
“Wait – you got your nipples pierced?!” I cry.
“Nipple, singular,” says Malfoy holding up one finger, “Getting them both done would just be plain stupid.”
I don’t really know what to say to that. I thought I would have noticed if Malfoy had a nipple piercing – but then again, he may not have been wearing it the night we –
Okay, this is just weird. I don’t really want to think about it.
“You Slytherins are freaks,” I sigh, shaking my head.
“Oh c’mon you must have done something like that at one stage?” he grins.
“I can safely say that I never got a piercing anywhere except for my ears!” I exclaim.
“Yeah…but you did chain yourself to the Herbology greenhouses and wore badges you made yourself,” he says.
“That was for a good cause! S.P.E.R.M! The Society for the Promotion of Extra Rights for Mandrakes!”
We reach the door of the castle and Malfoy opens it for me and allows me in first. And Dom’s coming out of the Great Hall with James and Al. Oh fuck this is going to be awkward. She comes over to us and slips an arm around Malfoy’s waist. What a two-faced little –
“Where have you been all day?” she asks Malfoy.
“Around,” he shrugs mysteriously. Dom raises her eyebrow and even I’m intrigued. “No need to look so suspicious ladies, it’s all legit. I’m gonna have to buzz off now – lots to do.”
He winks at me and gives Dom a kiss on the cheek before heading off to the Slytherin dungeons. Dom doesn’t really make much of it and turns to me.
“He’s always disappearing off,” says Dom, “Especially at weekends. I don’t know where he goes. I’ve even had James check the Marauder’s Map, but he’s never on it…So how did the knitting go?” she asks, trailing off.
“Oh you know…pointy,” I say stupidly, “Erm, Dom, I think we need to talk.”
“Do we have to do it now? I have a Transfiguration essay and a potions assignment to do, not to mention Herbology –”
“I know about you and Mark.”
A/N - This chapter was going to be way longer, but I cut it in half to make it into two chapters! Thanks for reading, I'd appreciate any feedback, and thanks so much to all my readers and reviewers (when it got to over 1,000 I nearly cried!) you all rock!
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