Chapter 8 : Chapter Eight: Crime
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Chapter Eight: Crime
It was Monday. Doomsday as Rose had begun to call it in her mind.
She had owled frequently with Scorpius, her poor owl Castor exhausted from all the flight, telling him all about Maegan and Liam as well as her present fear of telling her parents. He replied with his own (somewhat) irrational fear that his parents would disown him, leaving him with nothing to help provide for their family.
To say the least, neither Rose nor Scorpius wanted to tell their parents on this particular Doomsday. However, they had promised that they would, so they had to swallow their fears.
Thankfully for Rose, Hugo had left for his best mate Trey Sommers’ house for the day, leaving Rose alone in the house with her parents. Ron and Hermione had both taken the week off in order to spend more time with their kids.
Rose had just eaten lunch with her parents and knew that now was the best time to tell them. Her father was in especially good spirits now that he had a full stomach.
“Mum, Daddy, I’ve got something to tell you,” she started off.
Immediately, her parents thought something dreadful had happened. Parents always assume the worst.
“Oh, Merlin. Rose, did you change your mind on becoming a Healer?” Hermione automatically questioned.
“Did a boy make a move on you?” Ron had asked angrily.
“No and no. Of course I still want to be a Healer and no boy made any unwanted moves on me,” Rose answered, aggravated. She had barely spoken and her parents were already jumping down her throat. That didn’t help the bundle of nerves that were shaking violently in her stomach.
“Then what is it Rose?” Hermione wondered, sitting down beside her husband at the kitchen table.
“Well, I’ve got a boyfriend.”
Hermione’s eyes widened and her eyebrows shot up. Ron’s face hardened and darkened menacingly.
“Who is it?”
“Now, Daddy, don’t be like that. Not all boys are like you think.”
“Rose, of course they are. I was a teenage boy once. I know how they think and what they want.”
“And what’s that?” Rose pestered her father. She hadn’t even given a name and Ron was already denouncing the said boyfriend.
“One thing: sex.”
“Ronald!” Hermione cried. “Boys don’t always just want that. Sometimes food comes first. Take Albus for instance.”
Rose thought about her mother’s suggestion. It was true; boys sometimes did want food more than sex, but using Al as an example of that? It was absurd! Al could be thought of as a bloody Casanova!
Ron, though he didn’t know, was thinking the same thing as his daughter.
“Hermione, how the bloody hell do you come up with Al for that!? He’s practically the anti-Harry! Harry had two girls, Al has two hundred!”
“Don’t exaggerate, Ron,” Hermione scoffed.
“I’m not!” Ron defended himself.
“Mum, Daddy, focus. I’m trying to tell you something!”
Hermione’s face softened. “I’m sorry Rose. We’re listening now.”
Hermione shot a scathing glare Ron’s way, telling him to keep his mouth shut.
“As I was saying, I’ve got a boyfriend.”
“Yes, Rosie. Who is it?” Ron asked, his teeth clenched and patronizing Hermione.
Rose muttered something incoherent, causing Hermione to ask her to repeat.
“Scorpius Malfoy,” she whispered.
Hermione sighed. She thought it was someone else. Who, she didn’t know, but someone who wasn’t nearly as good as Scorpius was. Scorpius was, in fact, a very nice young man, and all thanks to his mother, Astoria. She had been successful in transforming Draco and managing to raise a kind, polite, handsome young man. The fact that Rose knew him very well, since they were friends first, did help.
Ron, however, was not thinking anything like his wife.
“Daddy, you heard who I said.”
“Is this the truth? Scorpius Malfoy?” he practically bellowed. His eyes flashed angrily and his grip on the table was causing his knuckles to turn white.
“How could you Rose? He’s a Malfoy!” Ron exclaimed in near-hysterics. He wasn’t quite hysterical yet, but he was on his way.
“Ronald!” Hermione cried, flabbergasted at his accusing words.
“How could I? How could I?” Rose shouted, on the verge of hysterics herself. “What do you mean by that?”
“Rose, he’s a bloody Malfoy! Malfoys are slimy gits and untrustworthy and murderers!”
Rose’s mood took a turn for the worse. Her father’s accusations had brought out her angry, monstrous side. She took after him in that respect.
“How dare you! You haven’t even tried to understand Scorpius or his father. You have no right to assume that all Malfoys are untrustworthy and murderers. Just because you have a vendetta against Draco Malfoy for petty reasons doesn’t mean that Scorpius is anything like the person his father was in school.”
“Rose, it’s not possible for people to change like you’re claiming the Malfoys have. It just doesn’t happen that way!”
Rose took a deep breath before she spoke again. Unlike her father, she could control her anger. It took quite a lot of will power, though.
When she finally spoke, Rose’s voice was even toned and steady. “Then you must be proof that people aren’t capable of changing.”
Ron’s mouth dropped and Hermione gasped.
Wordlessly, Ron’s mouth moved in an attempt to say something but he was just too shocked to get anything out.
Hermione, meanwhile, was biting her tongue so hard it bled. She had so many things that needed to be said, but this was between her daughter and husband. She had no right to say anything at this point.
Rose glared at her father.
Finally, Ron responded.
“What exactly do you mean by that?” he asked feebly.
Rose groaned in frustration. “How can you not know? Daddy, you said that the Malfoys haven’t changed and yet, they very clearly have. They don't have any associations with any former Death Eaters and Scorpius doesn’t even know his grandparents, Draco’s parents. Both of the Malfoys have been civil to you whenever they see you. But you, you haven’t changed at all. You’ve clung to your hatred of the Malfoys, just because they are Malfoys. Everyone else has been accepting of their change of heart but you; Mum has, Uncle Harry has. So have Aunt Ginny, Grandpa, and Grandmum. Everyone has. Why can’t you?”
“Why can’t I? Why can’t I!?” Ron hollered, erupting from his seat at the kitchen table, knocking over his chair in the process. “People like the Malfoys took so much from me. Death Eaters killed my family, scarred them, tortured them. All throughout school, Draco Malfoy tormented everyone and anyone I cared about. Why should he deserve my acceptance when he never accepted me? It’s got everything to do with that bloody pureblood shit. I’m just as pureblooded as he is, yet since I fraternized with half-bloods and Muggleborns, I wasn’t worthy. Why should I bother now?”
“Because it’s the right thing to do.”
Ron looked at his daughter in stony silence.
“Why are you pushing this so hard, Rosie? What is it about Scorpius bloody Malfoy that you’ve got to defend him and his family so much?”
“That’s what you do when it comes to matters of the heart. Couldn’t I be saying the same thing about you?”
Ron’s face melted from chiseled anger to sculpted sorrow. His little girl, his Rosie, was in love.
He felt as though the wind was knocked out of him.
“You love him?” he whispered, barely inaudible.
“Yes, I am in love with Scorpius.”
Hermione gasped, her hand shooting towards her mouth. How could she have not realized?
Ron took one last look at his daughter before he walked out of the kitchen mutely, his shoulders sagging as if he was carrying the weight of the world on his shoulders. The kitchen door had barely closed when Hermione and Rose both heard that sharp ‘pop,’ signaling that Ron had left.
He wouldn’t be back for some time.
Rose turned to her mother. “Mum, I’m going over to Cecelia’s. If you need me, you can find me there.”
With that, Rose Apparated on the spot.
Hermione was left alone in the kitchen, still in shock. Her husband had left speechless and her daughter didn’t even bother to explain further.
How long has Rose been dating Scorpius? Hermione couldn’t help but ask herself. Why did she have to tell them now?
Hermione’s heart was breaking due to the fact that her daughter hadn’t confided in her about one of the most important things she could possibly tell her. She had kept her relationship with Scorpius a secret for Merlin knows how long. Then she just left after telling her parents this? Not one more explanatory word.
But then Hermione realized why Rose needed to tell them now: she had something else to tell them. Rose had a secret.
But what, Hermione didn’t know.
Rose Apparated into Cecelia’s room to find that she had other company: she and Albus were snogging like mad.
Cecelia barely noticed her best friend’s presence, being occupied with other things, but a flicker of movement caught her eye. She saw Rose’s emotionless face and instantly pushed Albus off of her and rushed over to Rose, catching her just before she crumpled to the floor.
“Oh, fuck,” Al said eloquently.
Cecelia smoothed down Rose’s auburn hair, trying to comfort her. She wasn’t crying, but she wasn’t speaking either. “Al, owl Scorpius and tell him to come here now.”
Al did as he was told in record time. He sent Cecelia’s owl, Gandalf, off, urging him to fly fast since it was urgent.
Gandalf reached Scorpius in record time and at the worst time possible, too.
Scorpius was in the drawing room, just about to tell his parents about Rose when heard an owl tap on the window.
It wasn’t Castor, like he anticipated, but rather a vaguely familiar owl. He opened the window for the owl to come in and give him his letter.
“Scorpius, what is it? And why is this owl here now?” his mother asked him, inquiringly.
“I don’t know, Mum. That’s why I’m going to read what he brought.”
“Well, please hurry up Scorpius. I’ve got to get ready for my meeting.”
Scorpius ignored his father, but Astoria didn’t.
“Draco, he’s your son. Plus, you technically don’t even have to go to this meeting. You want to go because you want to brag about your son after it ends and all of you go out for drinks,” Astoria Malfoy, née Greengrass, laughed at her husband.
Draco Malfoy smirked at his wife of nearly twenty-one years. She certainly knew him well; better than anyone actually.
“Is that such a problem?” he teased. “And what if I don’t just want to brag about my gorgeous, sexy wife?”
“Shit,” Draco and Astoria heard their son utter. Their light mood changed in an instant as they worried about their son.
“Scorpius, is something wrong?”
“Uh – er – Merlin,” he stuttered at a complete loss for words.
The three Malfoys were hushed for a few more moments before anyone spoke again.
“Fuck” was the next thing that Draco and Astoria heard out of their son’s mouth . It didn’t even bother them that he swore. It was just the fact that he did that worried them. He didn’t swear that often.
“Son, what’s happened?” Draco asked his only child.
“I’ve got to go.”
“What?” Astoria was confused. Her son had just wanted to tell them something and had gathered them in the drawing room and now he wanted to leave?
“I’ve got to go.”
“But why? You were just going to tell us something,” Astoria reminded her son.
“Oh right. Well, I guess I'll tell you before I go. I’m dating Rose Weasley.”
Before Draco or Astoria could say anything intelligent, their son was gone.
Draco looked at Astoria and she looked just as bewildered at he was.
“Did he just tell us that he’s dating Rose Weasley?” Astoria asked her husband; she barely believed it, but was going to be very happy if it was true.
“What the – Bloody hell!”
Draco stormed out of the room, Astoria hot on his heels.
“Draco, please don’t do anything rash!”
“I'll do whatever I bloody well feel like,” came his angry response, much to his wife’s chagrin.
Needless to say, he wasn’t going to his meeting.
Even if Astoria loved the idea of her only son dating Rose Weasley, Draco had yet to get over the fact that she was a Weasley.
She only hoped that whatever Scorpius had disappeared so quickly for was nothing too urgent.
Come quick. Rose here at Cecelia’s. Not good. –Al
That’s all the note said and it scared the hell out of Scorpius.
Was Rose alright? Was the baby alright? Had she told her parents and it went badly? Did they find out accidentally and were furious?
Scorpius couldn’t help but imagine all of the worst situations and more. Once he started dating Rose (albeit secretly), he quickly grew attached. After a few months, he realized that he had fallen in love with her. He knew then that if anything bad happened to Rose, he wouldn’t be able to help but feel partially responsible for it, even if he wasn’t. He felt it his duty to protect her.
These thoughts had grown exponentially as he and Rose had gotten closer to their six month mark, their nine month mark, all the way to nearly a year. These feelings were now even stronger because of their baby.
Once he arrived at Cecelia’s, he greeted her family briefly before rushing up the stairs, taking two at a time. He barreled into Cecelia’s room to see Rose on the floor with Cecelia’s arms around her. Al was pacing behind them, distractedly dragging a hand over his face and into his hair.
Scorpius swiftly closed Cecelia’s door and dashed toward Rose.
“Rose, love, are you alright?” he asked her while he and Cecelia pulled Rose to her feet.
Rose finally spoke, directing her attention to the window.
Blandly, she informed Scorpius, Cecelia, and Al that she had told her parents, only for her father to explode about being a traitor by dating a Malfoy. She detailed how it escalated into a full-blow Weasley word war, resulting in Ron’s defeat and retreat.
There wasn’t anything any of her friends could say to make it better.
“Well Rose, you’re welcome to stay the night so things at your house can settle down,” Cecelia offered. “Scorpius and Albus can stay too. Caleb won’t mind as long as we’re quiet for Chloe and Cameron.”
Scorpius and Albus nodded solemnly, agreeing with this idea.
Rose smiled at her best friend. “Thanks Cece. That’s a perfect idea.”
Rose inched her way toward Scorpius, wordlessly attaching herself to him. In response to her touch, Scorpius snaked an arm around Rose’s waist and kissed her forehead.
“Cecelia, can I borrow your owl so I can tell my parents what I’m doing? I kind of just left,” Scorpius said.
Scorpius quickly wrote a note to his mother, telling her where he was, what he was going to do, and that he’d explain his hasty departure as soon as he got home. He wrote her, knowing that she would be the understanding one. Presently, he had no desire to even imagine what his father would do.
Al also wrote his parents to tell that that he was staying the night at Cecelia’s (along with Rose and Scorpius since he knew his mother wouldn’t go for it if he were staying alone at a girl’s house, even if her older brother and legal guardian was there.)
Rose sent a short note to her mother, informing her of her plans and to tell her not to worry; she just needed to get away for a bit herself.
The four friends remained in Cecelia’s room, occasionally venturing downstairs for food and to see the real world in action. They ate dinner with Caleb, Cailyn, Chloe, and Cameron and had a very pleasant time. For the most part, they managed to forget about the previous events of the day. That is, until they got settled to sleep.
Albus, Cecelia, Rose and Scorpius crowded themselves on Cecelia’s floor, despite the fact that Cecelia offered her bed. It seemed that they all wanted to wake up sore and stiff from sleeping on the floor.
Cecelia and Albus took no time falling asleep while Scorpius and Rose could only toss and turn.
Rose and Scorpius heard their friends’ breathing become steady and rhythmic and vaguely saw them wrapped in one another’s arms.
Rose’s voice cut through the darkness.
“I don’t know if you know, if Al told you or not, but they’re trying their hand at being a couple.”
Though Rose couldn’t see, Scorpius smiled in the darkness, his hands behind his head and his face angled toward the ceiling.
“He didn’t tell me directly, but I assumed. I think it’s about time.”
Neither spoke for at least five minutes then Scorpius broke the silence.
“I told my parents. I had just gotten the letter from Al, which is why I came here. For you. I was just about to tell them when I got the letter. So I told them abruptly before Apparating here. I don’t even know how they reacted.”
Scorpius heard a rustling which happened to be Rose. She had scooted closer to him, laying her head on his chest.
“How do you imagine they reacted then?” Rose asked him thoughtfully.
“I think Mum would be shocked speechless, but that would mean that she was silently thrilled. She really likes you Rose. I think you remind her of herself. She’d be happy for us.”
“And what about your dad? What would his reaction be like?”
As much as Scorpius didn’t want to tell Rose, he didn’t want to lie to her either. He knew very well that his father would not have been thrilled to hear that his son was dating a Weasley. He had a very difficult time accepting that his son was friends with a Potter and a Weasley. Scorpius hadn’t ever bothered to mention that detail to Rose.
“Dad, well, he’s another story,” Scorpius started. “When I told him as a first year that I was friends with you and Al, he didn’t take it very well. He got really angry and started yelling and swearing. I hadn’t ever seen him that angry in all my eleven years. Mum had her work cut out for her to calm him down. This will be no different.”
Scorpius felt Rose breathe deeply, her ribcage expanding against him.
“Why didn’t you ever tell me your dad responded to our friendship like mine?”
“I don’t know Rose. It just seemed like you didn’t need to hear how my dad still has a bit of a problem with Weasleys. After all, he still has that Death Eater thing going against him.”
Rose breathed deeply again, not uttering another word, and tightened her hold on Scorpius.
With her arms and legs tightly wound about him, Rose knew that she could stop worrying at least for a short time. She let her eyes droop and her tiredness consume her.
As she was drifting to sleep, she heard Scorpius whisper a confession of love and felt his lips brush her head.
She fell asleep with a smile on her face.
While their children hung out, ate and slept, the Malfoys and the Weasleys were stir-crazy and wide awake.
Ron had gone to the one place he felt he could calm down: the Quidditch pitch.
The Quidditch pitch was located on Harry and Ginny’s land and had been built with the idea that any and all the family could use it whenever they wished. The annual Weasley Quidditch game also took place on this pitch. Everyone participated in some way, be it playing, refereeing, or cheering.
Ron was flying around on the pitch, throwing Quaffles at the goals angrily. He wasn’t getting many in the goal since he had already stopped at the Leaky Cauldron for a few firewhiskeys beforehand.
The method of drunken Quidditch managed to keep him sane, but he always felt horrible afterwards. Hermione never had any sympathy for him when he came home, but why should he get any sympathy when he did this to himself?
Whenever Ron ran away from his problems, bouncing from the Leaky Cauldron to the pitch, Hermione found herself watching him intently at the Potters when he made his way to the pitch. Ginny would always be home, just waiting for Hermione to show up, and would hand Hermione her many cups of tea.
Hermione, naturally, would tell Ginny why Ron was drunk and playing Quidditch as well as explaining unnecessarily why she was watching him in the first place. This time was like any other.
Ginny calmly supplied Hermione with her second cup of tea (the first cup was to help her calm down a bit). “So, what happened to make Ron play a drunken game of Quidditch with himself?”
“Rose,” Hermione answered, holding the cup of tea firmly between her hands, not looking at Ginny at all.
“Rose? No wonder he’s worse than usual,” Ginny commented as she watched Ron hurl a Quaffle at a goal post on the illuminated pitch. “What happened?”
Hermione took a large gulp of her tea before answering.
“She told us she was dating Scorpius.”
Ginny squealed happily, quickly concealing the squeal by turning it into a cough.
“As in Scorpius Malfoy, I presume?” she asked, composed.
Hermione nodded wordlessly and downed her second cup. Ginny dutifully refilled it.
“How’d Ron react?”
“Better than I expected, at first. But then he had to go and say that Scorpius was from a family of untrustworthy murderers. Rose then called Ron out on the fact that he can’t assume all Malfoys are like that, which only made Ron angrier. He then said that people aren’t capable changing and Rose found this ironic since the Malfoys have clearly changed, seeing that they have disassociated themselves from the Death Eaters and Lucius. Ron on the other hand, still clings to the centuries old familial hatred of the Malfoys.
“Ron obviously couldn’t fathom what she meant by that because he was already so worked up. He didn’t know why he needed to bother with accepting the Malfoys now when that had never accepted the kind, Muggle-loving Weasleys. Rose told him it was the right thing to do, despite any past grievances. Subsequently, Ron had to know why Rose was defending Scorpius and his family. That was when Rose told us the whole truth: she is in love with him.”
Hermione choked back a sob that nearly escaped. Her only daughter had fallen in love and hadn’t even bothered to tell her mother. Rose had always told Hermione everything, and in great detail. Why did that have to change now?
Ginny pulled Hermione into a warm embrace and let her cry freely.
Ginny couldn’t completely understand what was eating at Hermione so much because her own daughter rarely ever let her in on her life. She was desperately lacking that aspect of the mother-daughter relationship.
“I’m so sorry Hermione. I can imagine how much it must hurt that Rose hadn’t let you in on this part of her life. Let it all out now so when you see her next, you won’t get upset.”
“I thought she told me everything. What else hasn’t she told me?” Hermione implored, very visibly shaken up as tears streamed down her face.
“Don’t worry about that. Rose is a good, smart girl. In a way, I imagine, she was trying to protect you. If she needs to tell you something more, the time will come. You always think the worst.”
Hermione exhaled slowly, wiping away her tears. “Of course. You’re right. I just worry about Ron and her; they’re so alike and so very stubborn.”
“We all have our faults.”
Hermione quickly drained her third cup and instantly sobered up.
As she leisurely sipped her fourth cup, Hermione glanced out the window every once in awhile to watch Ron. Smiling sadly, she hoped he would get over himself quickly.
She tore her eyes from him and looked to Ginny.
Ginny’s face lit up bit by bit with a dazzling smile.
“So, Scorpius Malfoy? What do you think of that?” Ginny finally asked Hermione.
Hermione grinned back at Ginny. “What can I say? He’s perfect for my daughter.”
Ginny and Hermione instantly began giggling like little school girls as they thought about Scorpius Hyperion Malfoy’s perfection.
Draco Malfoy was pissed off and ventured to the Hog’s Head where he tended to go when he was pissed off. There, he’d spend an unhealthy amount of time drinking firewhiskey and venting loudly to the bartender, Aberforth Dumbledore.
Draco turned to the Hog’s Head due to the fact that barely anyone goes there. Therefore, his ranting and raving disturbs very few people.
“So, Draco, why are you here tonight?”
“My son,” Draco answered Aberforth gloomily, settling in his standard bar stool.
“And what has your son done?”
“What has my son done? Well, he practically saved his soul for the devil, as those Muggles say.”
“I think it’s “sold his soul,” but that kind of works too. What’d Scorpius do then?”
Draco took a large gulp of firewhiskey, draining his mug. “He’s dating a Weasley.”
Aberforth whistled sympathetically as he poured Draco more firewhiskey. He dared not say anything, as he was fearful for his life, but made it seem like he understood Draco’s perspective.
“Yeah, I know. And if she wasn’t a Weasley, I might just like her too.”
Aberforth nodded appreciatively. “So, what’s this Weasley like?”
“Merlin, she’s kind of perfect for Scorpius, as much as I hate to admit it. She’s pretty, first in her year, the Head Girl, generous, kind, and diplomatic. She can even be a good laugh.”
“Ah, he’s dating Rose Weasley.”
“Yes,” Draco grumbled unhappily.
“So why exactly don’t you like that he’s dating her?”
Draco stared at Aberforth blindly. “Why? Her father is Ron Weasley and hates me. Not to mention that I hate him.”
“Okay, and her mother?”
“She might’ve been a know-it-all in school, but I can tolerate her. Astoria, my wife, and Hermione are friends. They’re in the same book club or something.”
“So you can tolerate her mother, but not her father and therefore dislike the fact that she is dating your son, even though you like her fine.”
“Yes, but I’m not telling Scorpius or Astoria that.”
“And why not?” Aberforth pried.
Draco slammed his firewhiskey down, causing some to slosh onto the bar.
“Because I don’t want to.”
Aberforth shrugged. “Good enough for me.”
With that, Aberforth shut up and Draco attempted to comfort himself with more firewhiskey.
Astoria absolutely hated it when Draco drank firewhiskey. He didn’t drink it that often, only when something went wrong with something concerning Scorpius and/or Weasley interferences. He never drank firewhiskey when he went out with his friends. What she hated most about it was what he was like when he came home.
He always was angry thanks to the firewhiskey. Angrier than when he left to go drown himself in firewhiskey. He wouldn’t talk to Astoria, let alone look at her. He’d hole himself up in his study, sleeping the alcohol off. Astoria wanted to help him, but he didn’t want help.
Astoria didn’t think that this time would be any different that the handful of other times. She found it best to keep herself occupied when he left. This night, she immersed herself in work. She was the successful owner of a thriving witch’s fashion boutique. She designed new robes and experimented with new fabrics, did her taxes and wrote out order forms. Even with all this work, Astoria still had a hard time concentrating on just her work.
Around two a.m., both Hermione and Astoria gave up on their husbands and climbed into their beds alone. After nearly half an hour of tossing and turning, their eyes were drooping and their minds were drifting off to sleep. Then Ron and Draco returned and climbed into their respective beds, pulling their wives close.
Silently, both men managed to apologize to their wives and their wives accepted their apologies without a word.
They all knew they’d have to talk about it when they awoke, anyway.
Right now, all they wanted to do was sleep.
AN: Now this is my longest chapter ever. Please review!
AN: (as of Nov. 8) I'm so sorry I'm taking so long updating! I'm really busy and just haven't time to finish my chapter! Be patient!
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