Chapter 35 : Fall for You
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Sure, I meant them. I meant them more than anything I’d probably ever said. I was panting, I was angry, my insides were shaking harder than maracas on Mardi Gras, and my heart was flying at a million miles an hour – but I felt freer.
I felt like a huge weight had been lifted off of my shoulders. I felt like a knot that I didn’t know was tied had been undone from within my chest. I felt lighter.
It was incredible.
But at the same time, it was terrifying. I had opened myself up in a way that I had never done before. I had laid my heart out on the line. And now it was his choice what to do with it. The way I saw it, he only had two options. Option 1: He rejects me and what was left of my heart breaks into irreparable little pieces. Option 2: He tells me he loves me back and we live happily ever after.
I stared down at the floor in mortification, not wanting to have to look at him if he was going to reject me and also not wanting to show him how red my cheeks had suddenly gone. Stupid, stupid, stupid!
What happened next was something that I had neither expected nor wanted: he started laughing. Not only laughing, but roaring with laughter.
This didn’t fit in with my two options at all.
I felt my cheeks flame with embarrassment and it took all of the will power I had left not to curl up in a ball on the floor and hide in shame. I should not have said it. I should have kept it to myself. No matter how freeing and good it felt, I should not have said it. Only girls in sappy romance novels declared their undying love for their ex-boyfriends. In the real world we kept our feeling to ourselves.
But in sappy romance novels, boys never laughed when the girls declared their undying love for them. They usually said something romantic back and then they’d kiss passionately. But unfortunately, I lived in the real world. Even in the real world though, the boy wasn’t supposed to laugh. He was supposed to stick with my options damnit! This was only more proof of how screwed up my life was at times.
“Why are you laughing?” I demanded, trying to sound more confident than I actually was.
He mumbled something incoherently between hiccups and I glared up at him, feeling my temper flaring. At the same time I felt horrible, embarrassed, and broken. I stood there for a moment, still listening to the hoots that rang through the otherwise silent hall and I felt something inside of my abdomen cringe. The rest was a reflex reaction. My body cringed away from his, away from the pain that I knew this would cause me that hadn’t hit yet, and my arms wrapped themselves protectively around me.
I took a step away from him, not looking at him as I turned on my heel and started walking away. I knew that Morgana would be livid when she heard that I’d bailed on my patrols again. And Lucy would just be delighted. Neville would probably take my badge. But I really didn’t care. I didn’t care about anything anymore, except making it back up to my dorm so that I could lay on my bed like the miserable lump that I was and cry myself out until I fell asleep.
I knew I shouldn’t have come tonight.
I heard the laughter cut off behind me and felt a shiver run down my spine, and then I felt myself being pulled around by the wrist.
“Hey,” Scorpius said, looking very serious for someone who had been practically pissing himself less than 30 seconds ago. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have laughed. I didn’t mean to-“
“Yeah, well you did,” I muttered darkly, glaring up at him again.
“Did I hurt your feelings?” he asked, his blue-grey eyes boring into mine.
I rolled my eyes, breaking his gaze, implying the ‘duh, you idiot’.
“Okay, I did,” he sighed, letting go of my wrist and sinking down against the wall, running his fingers through his hair in frustration. “Merlin, I always fuck everything up.”
“No you don’t,” I replied, sighing sympathetically and sinking down on the wall next to him. He looked over at me with a look that clearly read ‘don’t patronize me’ and I suppressed a grin. “Okay, so maybe you do.”
He laughed darkly and put his head in his hands, his blond hair flopping around his face rather pathetically. And suddenly, for some sick, paradoxical reason, I felt sorry for him. I really had no reason to feel sorry for him – he had cheated on me, he had blamed me for it, and then he had laughed at me for telling him that I loved him.
What was wrong with me?
“So why were you laughing at me?” I asked, hoping to make myself angry again because honestly that was one emotion I could understand. Anger was simple. Someone did something stupid that offended me or hurt me and I got angry at them. Pure, plain, and simple. Love was so much more complicated. It was anger, passion, sympathizing, laughing, happiness, giddiness, embarrassment, freedom, and anxiety all rolled into one. It was too much for me to handle.
“I swear, I didn’t mean to,” he quickly apologized, picking his head up so that he could look at me again. “I was just so relieved.”
Again he let out a soft chuckle.
“Relieved?” I asked, completely bewildered.
“Uh, yeah,” he said, a muscle in his jaw jumping uncomfortably. “I know you’ll think it’s crazy, but I was kind of worried that you liked Tony.”
“Tony?!” I cried, this time laughing myself. “Tony? You thought I liked Tony?”
“Well, yeah,” he said, scratching at the back of his head sheepishly. “In the library-“
I couldn’t help it. I laughed harder. It was all so ridiculous. We were both so ridiculous.
“You were jealous?”I asked between laughs, and it was his time to blush. I was taken aback at first, considering it was the first time I had ever really seen him literally flush, but the light pink looked nice beneath his pale cheeks.
It was his turn to roll his eyes this time and for once it didn’t surprise me. I guessed I had known it all along. I just didn’t want to acknowledge it. Or I hadn’t let myself acknowledge it. That really explained what had happened to Tony’s head then.
“I told you it was ridiculous,” he reminded me.
“I don’t think it’s ridiculous,” I replied, tempted to lay my hand over his arm but resisting for the time being. “I think it’s sweet.”
He shot a feeble smile over at me and then we lapsed into silence for a few minutes. It wasn’t exactly an awkward silence, but it was one in which neither of us knew what to say. Surprisingly, my brain wasn’t working either. I was not even thinking really, just listening to the sounds of my our breathing.
It was nice sitting here with him. I wasn’t sure what the hell we were or where the hell we were going, but I was content for the time being.
“Rose,” he said after another few minutes of silence, his voice low and hoarse. “I really am sorry.”
He looked up down at me with those grey-blue eyes and I couldn’t help but feel a little bit sorry for him. He may have hurt me so badly, but he had hurt himself as well. It was obvious he still hadn’t forgiven himself for it. But had I forgiven him for it?
“I forgive you,” I whispered, looking up at him as I said it, and feeling a small smile break out across my face.
A smile broke across his face as well, but then suddenly turned dark again. “I don’t deserve you.”
“I used to say that to myself all the time,” I replied, putting a finger under his chin and lifting his face up again to look at me. “So maybe we’re even.”
He laughed a dark laugh, but did not object as I moved my hand from under his chin to rest against the side of his face. He leaned his cheek into my palm and his eyes closed for a moment.
My heart was pounding erratically in my chest and I was having a hard time breathing. My stomach was quivering in my abdomen and I was vaguely surprised that the rest of my body wasn’t shaking as well.
“Why didn’t you try to stop me?” I asked and his eyes opened in surprise. I could tell that he knew exactly what I meant.
“I didn’t think you wanted me to,” he replied, looking forlorn. “And I figured that that was the least I could do for you after what I had done. Did you want me to come after you?”
“No,” I replied honestly and laughed slightly. “Because I was angry at you. You had hurt me so badly. I wanted to stay angry with you. I think I realized even then that if I listened to you that I would forgive you instantly.”
“I promise, Rose,” he said, taking my hand from the side of his face and threading his fingers through mine, “I’ll never hurt you again.”
I felt a few tears that I had been struggling to hold back all night slip down my cheeks, but I let them, not feeling embarrassed about crying for once. He didn’t reach up to wipe them away, and for that I was grateful, but he just smiled somberly at me.
“Don’t promise me that,” I answered, squeezing his fingers tightly. “Promise me that no matter what happens we’ll be there for each other.”
He grinned and squeezed my fingers too. “Okay. I promise.”
I felt the corners of my lips tug upwards in a small smile and I sighed rather happily.
“Can I ask you one more thing?” I asked.
“Go for it,” he answered, his voice sounding more normal now and slightly happier.
“Why were you so angry with me when I told you I didn’t care?”
He sighed and ran his hand through his hair again. “I wasn’t really angry with you, per say. I was more frustrated with you.”
“Because, don’t you see it? When you love someone, you’re supposed to be selfless and do what you know is best for them. Being with me is not good for you. It makes your family resent you – look at James and your dad – it makes people talk about you behind your back. If you knew what people said about the two of us, I don’t think you’d want to stay at school. And then you also have to deal with all of the things I do. And I’m just human Rose. I make mistakes. Hell, I make more mistakes than anyone I know. I don’t want you to have to deal with the consequences.”
I sat there in shock for a minute unsure of what to say or what to do. My voice felt stuck in my throat and my mouth went dry. I swallowed nervously and licked my lips.
“Let’s get something straight here,” I commanded. “First of all, my father was horrible to me long before you came around. And James, well James has always had a temper. I’m not worried about him. And I know what people say about me. Trust me, I know. And I don’t really care. It’s just talk right? I’ve never had much of a reputation to begin with, so there is nothing to miss. And so what if you’re not perfect, Scorpius? I never expected you to be perfect. Hell, I’m glad you’re not. It makes me feel a little bit better about myself to know I’m not the only one whose flawed. I went into this with no expectations – except maybe to loathe you a little bit more because I had to see so much of you. But as time went on, I felt myself growing closer to you instead. And you put up with all of the crap with my family, and took me to meet your family, and bought me that beautiful bracelet and for once I felt like I belonged somewhere. For once, I felt like I could finally be myself. And I also realized, when I lost you, that you were the only person I wanted to talk to about it. So I clearly know the consequences of what happens when you’re dumb. And the consequences of me not being with you are worse.”
“Wow,” was all he managed to say. “You’re a lot different from the girl I saw under the bleachers that day.”
“And you’re a lot different from the boy I saw under the bleachers that day,” I replied. “But is different a bad thing?”
“Not at all,” he answered, taking my other hand in his.
I felt giddy. There was no other way to describe it. My mind was whirring through thoughts so quickly that I couldn’t even comprehend what I was thinking. My body had practically gone numb, but in a good way. There was still a trickle of fear that crept up my spine, but I couldn’t help but feel that that was the pessimistic part of myself that was just trying to tell me not to get ahead of myself.
But I wanted to get ahead of myself. I wanted to be happy for once. And besides, this didn’t seem like a bad conversation. It was a necessary one. Was it slightly painful – sure. Was it slightly odd – of course. But you could say that about our entire relationship.
“So can we just forget this ever happened and move on?” he asked, a little beacon of hope showing on his face.
“No, I don’t think we can,” I replied honestly, and his face instantly fell, crestfallen. “I think that despite how horrible this whole thing was, it was a good learning experience for the both of us. And I don’t think we should forget it. But can we move on? Yeah, I think so.”
He looked up at me and smirked. “I thought you were going to just say no.”
“Are you crazy? I asked, laughing. “After all of this?”
“True,” he replied and I laid my head on his shoulder. He stiffened slightly at first but then relaxed and let go of one of my hands to wrap his arm around my waist. It felt so good to be able to do that again. It felt so normal and comforting. It felt like home.
“There’s one more thing I want to ask you.”
“Okay, go ahead.”
“Will you be my girlfriend?” he asked quietly.
I removed my head from his shoulder to look up at him and he was staring down at me intently, that still unknown emotion present in his eyes.
“Yes,” I replied and he instantly beamed.
His arm pulled me closer to him and I knew what was going to happen before it actually did. My arms found their way around the back of his neck and his other hand pressed against the side of my face. I felt a slight shiver run down my spine from being so close to him again and then his lips were on mine and I really shivered. He chuckled against my lips and I felt a hot blush color my cheeks for a minute. I had missed this. I had missed him. I pressed harder against him and he pulled me closer to him until I was practically in his lap. For the sake of being more comfortable I hooked my leg over his so that I was practically straddling his waist. This would look really bad to anyone who happened to walk by. But I didn’t care at all.
Finally we broke apart after a few minutes, both of us breathing hard. My lungs were on fire and I was slightly dizzy but I was blissfully happy.
“I definitely missed that,” he muttered between breathes.
I chuckled slightly and kissed him again swiftly. “Me too.”
He pulled me to him again and kissed me slower this time, less desperately. “You know,” he murmured against my lips, “in case it isn’t obvious – I love you too.”
“For two people who were so vehemently against having each other as patrol partners, you do seem to be enjoying yourselves,” a voice said suddenly and both Scorpius and I jumped, pulling apart and I tumbled off his lap back onto my spot on the floor next to him.
Morgana stood at the entrance to the hall we were currently sitting in, a smug look on her face.
“Oh, hi,” I squeaked, feeling slightly mortified. Why was it that every time I snogged Scorpius while out on patrols, someone managed to catch us at exactly the worst moment?
“Go away,” I heard Scorpius mumble under his breath and I suppressed a laugh.
“While I’m happy to see you two little lovebirds back together, you do have patrols that you’re supposed to be doing. If you don’t want me to take your badges, I suggest you get on it,” she commanded.
“Sure, right away,” Scorpius replied, standing up and then offering his hand down to me. I took it gratefully and pulled myself to my feet. He didn’t let go of my hand but pulled me along the hall towards Morgana and towards the way we had been going when we stopped.
Morgana nodded in approval as we passed and shot us both a wink that had my face going bright red again.
“That’s just our luck,” Scorpius laughed darkly as we walked along the next hall hand in hand.
“It could be worse,” I reminded him, thinking of Lucy and Charlotte again.
“True,” he chuckled, wrapping his arm around my waist and pulling me to his side. I snuggled in closer to him, breathing in his familiar musky scent.
Scorpius and I were together. He was mine again. Although, maybe he had never stopped being mine. Whatever the case, I was happier than I had been in a long time.
A/N: Yeah! It's finally finished! And no cliffie this time. I know it wasn't as long as some of you may like, but I figured that was the natural stopping place.
So what did you think? Did you like it? Dislike it? Think it was realistic? I hope you all liked it. :)
Oh, and just so you know, the title of this chapter and the mood was sort of set by the song I listened to the entire time I was writing this - "Fall for You" by Seconhand Serenade. If you haven't heard it, check it out. :)
Thanks for reading everyone! Please, please, please review!
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