Chapter 21 : Love
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Worry for her.
She had been missing for three days because Dumbledore didn’t want anyone to visit her in case someone would figure out how she was hurt and Regulus had to suffer for it. And when she finally was let out of the Infirmary and he confronted her, she just brushed him off.
Now, he was sitting alone in the common room while everyone else was enjoying a nice Saturday afternoon, waiting for her.
She knew…She knew that she wasn’t good enough for him.
Everything he did was for his benefit, but for hers as well. He thought of her before he did things. Worried himself sick whenever she did something stupid, and so far she could count three different scenarios where she had caused him pain.
As she stared at Regulus she could see what a great and loyal person he was, and see how ugly and selfish she really was.
She blamed everyone for anything bad that happened in her life. She made others hurt just to make herself feel better. She used others as stepping stonesjust to get a life that she didn’t deserve.
She was scum. She was lower than scum, if that was possible, and she knew that any feelings that Regulus felt for her she wasn’t worthy of.
Emily’s eyes saddened and she continued into the room, the stonewall entranceway closing behind her.
Emily bit her lip and called out to him, her voice cracking somewhat. “R-Regulus?”
Regulus looked up sharply and shot out of his chair, heading straight for her. “Emily, where have you been? I’ve been worried about you.”
Emily nodded. “I know.”
Regulus wrapped his arms around he waist and pulled her closer. “No, I don’t think you do. You go out for Prefect duties, then you’re missing for the next three days, and then you come back and have a large scar on your face.” He looked into her eyes.
“Please just tell me what happened.”
Emily pulled away from him and sat down on the couch. “I…I was attacked during my patrol.”
Regulus’s eyes widened and he sat down beside her, grabbing her hands. “What?! Who was it? I promise Emily, I’ll get them for you, I’ll-“
Emily silenced him. “I don’t know who it was Regulus, I…I was attacked from behind and I fell down some stairs. I’m sorry I didn’t send a note or anything, but…”
She looked at their joined hands, running her thumb softly over the back of his hand. “I just didn’t want you to see me when I wasn’t anything but perfect.”
Regulus smiled and brought her hands to his lips, kissing her knuckles, his eyes meeting hers. “I don’t care how you look when you’re injured, because all I care about is that you’re okay or not.”
His statement didn’t give her any comfort. She didn’t want him to be kind. Emily’s lip trembled and she tried to smile at him, but it was a failed attempt.
Regulus placed a hand on her cheek. “Emily, what’s wrong?”
Emily shook her head. “No, no, no, this isn’t right.”
Emily hit his hand away and stood up. “This! How can you be so nice to me?!”
Regulus stared up at her. “What are you talking about? You’re my girlfriend, and…and I care for you.”
That struck a cord within Emily. “Well you shouldn’t! I’m an awful person. I’m rude, and selfish, and…and mean! And I don’t deserve you Regulus, I don’t! You deserve someone who fits you better. Someone sweet and caring, smart, loving, everything that I’m not. I won’t do you any good.”
“You’re not making any sense.” Regulus said standing, and amused smile on his face.
“You are all those things and more.”
He cupped her face in his hands. “You’re everything I want and more.”
Tears slipped out of her eyes and she grabbed his wrists, shaking her head. “You don’t want me, you can’t want me!”
“Why not?” Regulus asked, eyes wide as the girl in front of him became even more hysterical.
Please hate me…
I don’t deserve you…
“Because Sirius kissed me!”
Time froze and Emily’s heart stopped as Regulus backed away from her, his eyes narrowed. “He...That traitor…He kissed you?!”
Emily nodded, her face pale and her hands shaking uncontrollably.
Regulus looked anywhere but in her direction, his eyes unbelieving. Suddenly he looked at her with only a little disbelief and hope still left. “He kissed you…but…but you didn’t kiss him back, right? After, after he…you pushed him away, right? You didn’t even consider him because you’re with me.”
Emily clenched her hands into fists.
“No,” Emily lied, swallowing a lump in her throat. “I-I kissed him back. I…I didn’t push him away.”
“No!” Regulus roared, grabbing her arms in a tight grip, forcing her to look at him. “Look at me and tell me that you kissed him. Look me in the eye and tell me you enjoyed it!”
Emily stared into his eyes, hating the helpless look reflecting back at her. “Yes. I kissed him, and I enjoyed it.”
She bit her lip and looked away. “Regulus, I’m sor-”
“NO!” He screamed. “Don’t you dare apologize to me! If you liked it so much, then why don’t you just go to him?!”
Emily shook her head. Doing this hurt more than she had anticipated “Regulus, please…”
“GO!” He roared, pointing to the doorway out of the common room. “Don’t ever talk to me again!”
Emily nodded and left the common room.
Regulus watched her leave, his anger being replaced by grief, which was overcome by rage. With a yell he pushed a vase from its stand and tipped over an armchair. He panted as the echo of glass breaking and the thud of the chair died down and he was surrounded by silence.
A dry sob escaped his lips and he collapsed onto the couch. He buried his head in his hands.
“Emily…why…Why him? When it’s me that loves you.”
Emily did what Regulus wanted and stayed away from him.
After she lied to him she expected that he was going to turn everyone against the girl that cheated on him with his blood traitor brother; she was actually waiting for the Slytherin House to turn on her, but it never happened.
Regulus never told anyone the reason for the breakup, just said, to Emily’s sad amusement, that they didn’t fit together.
Soon a month had passed and Emily got into a regular routine of avoiding Regulus, studying for her O.W.L.s, and keeping up appearances of a sly and cunning Slytherin girl.
Snape, to her suprise, hadn’t told anyone the true reason behind the breakup either. She could see the rage in his eyes whenever he looked at her, but he still didn’t tell anyone. She noticed, however, the looks of killing intent he shot at her brother and his friends, which wasn’t that unusual for Snape, but there was a look in his eyes when he looked at Lupin like he knew what he was.
Emily didn’t know how Snape found out, and she didn’t care, as long as Snape kept Emily’s business to himself. She didn't blame Lupin himself, just the monster, but the scar was never going to go away and she wanted to blame someone. Dumbledore only made it worse. If he didn't pick favorites then maybe Emily wouldn't have been so mad. But it was behind her and as the months passed she no longer cared.
As time passed, the only interesting things that happened were her O.W.L. exams and the graduation of Bellatrix Black and Rodolphus Lestrange.
And so the school year of Hell came to an end and Emily saw the upcoming three months at home as a welcome relief.
As she stepped off the train her eyes unconsciously searched for a familiar someone, and she watched wistfully as Regulus exited the train.
She continued to stare, not noticing the boy who snuck up behind her.
“Good riddance I say.”
Emily jumped and turned, coming face to face with Sirius. He was smiling, but she just stared at him, neither frowning nor smiling. Sirius’s smile faded when he got no reaction from her and touched her arm lightly.
She looked towards Regulus again, worried to been seen with Sirius. Regulus was staring back angrily, glaring at Sirius, his wand drawn. He glanced at her and their eyes locked. The connection lasted for a moment, but she looked away first, turning away from him and pulling away from Sirius.
“Why couldn’t you’ve just left me alone, Sirius?”
Sirius watched her walk away, his chest contracting in a pain he wasn’t used to, and he answered even though she couldn’t hear him.
“Because I love you, Emily.”
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