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Chapter 2 : Payback
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Chapter image depicts Rose Weasley!
lovely chapter image by BitterSweetFlames @ TDA!
Three weeks he had gone without getting a detention. Three weeks! That was practically a record for the Slytherin, then Rose had to go and ruin everything. It was what she did best, after all. Scorpius’ face had been contorted in a vicious scowl all afternoon. The rest of his classes passed without incident, a blur of information being absorbed into his memory.
“Oh come off it, Scorpius. You sort of asked for it,” Albus sighed with his hands behind his head, leaning casually against the cold stone as he sat in the window sill. The corridor was empty for the most part, save for a few straggling students who were late to dinner. “You called her a--” he stopped, looking around carefully, “cow.”
“It was the first thing I thought of!” the disgruntled Slytherin defended.
“You know how sensitive birds are about their weight,” Albus whispered.
“It was a figure of speech. She overreacted!” Scorpius threw his hands up and pushed himself off the castle wall, pacing impatiently in front of the vast, dark window. “I can’t believe I’m getting a detention for something so bloody ridiculous, yet she only gets a detention for nearly cursing my head into oblivion!”
A timid first year Hufflepuff squeaked in surprise at Scorpius’ outburst. Without a word, the poor girl ducked into the Great Hall and disappeared. A low growl rumbled from the back of his throat as he paced to and fro again, robes swishing at his feet.
“Aw, you know Rosie would never hurt a hair on that pretty, little head of your’s.”
“Piss off, Potter,” Scorpius warned, shooting a dark glare at his best friend.
“Someone’s a bit sensitive. Just laugh it off, Malfoy.”
That was always Al’s solution. Humor was his weapon, it always had been. James Potter had been Hogwart’s womanizer, Al was the prodigy jokester, taking lessons from the great Fred II, and lovely Lily Potter was the sweetest little thing to ever grace the halls of Hogwarts. It was a miracle she didn’t end up in Hufflepuff. She was a little awkward, but she’d inherited Mrs. Potter’s looks. Both Al and James had informed him that if he even so much as entertained a thought of pursuing her that they would both personally make sure he never had kids. Needless to say, he heeded their warning. Scorpius often wondered how he, a short-tempered Slytherin, had become such great friends with the nutter.
“Easier said than done,” the blonde muttered, stopping abruptly as a rush of red hair caught his eye. It disappeared down a corridor and he shrugged it off.
“Now you didn’t hear this from me,” Albus started, again looking around rather sketchily. “But, I say you make the detention a living hell for little miss Red.”
“You really confuse the hell out of me sometimes, you know that,” he said, a smirk finally forming on his lips.
“That’s my job. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy the show you two put on. Hilarious! Now let’s just go get something to eat. I’m starving,” Albus moaned.
The Gryffindor slid off the sill and threw his arm awkwardly over Scorpius’ shoulder as the two walked through the large doors in to the Great Hall. The room was crowded and loud, every table filled with chatting students as they tucked in to the wonderful feast.
“I think I’m going to avoid your table,” Scorpius announced as he stopped at the bottom of the Slytherin section.
“Probably a smart idea. See ya ‘round, Malfoy. Care to join me in pesterin’ ole Peeves on this fine evening? After your detention, of course,” Albus chuckled.
“Rain check? I think one detention suffices for the day,” he replied, shaking his head as he waved the Gryffindor off and took his spot in between Trevor and Daisy.
“Hi, Scorp,” Daisy cooed as she shifted a few inches closer to him.
“Hello,” he mumbled, dishing himself a good helping of turkey and gravy.
“So I heard Weasley got you another detention,” Trevor commented as he swept his dark hair from his face.
“Unfortunately,” Scorpius sighed, pouring himself some pumpkin juice and staring across the hall.
Rose sat there quietly, nibbling on a biscuit while Albus flung a spoonful of carrots across the table at Hugo who was already sporting mash across his forehead. Alyson Longbottom was chatting animatedly to Rose from one side while Zachary Wood reenacted a save he had made in a previous Quidditch match. Scorpius’ father had often spoken of Oliver and Katie Wood, Zachary’s Quidditch-obsessed, Gryffindor parents. The apple certainly hadn’t fallen far from the tree.
“Earth to Scorpius?” came a velvety voice from in front of him. He blinked, his gaze returning to those in his direction line of vision. “You definitely were spaced out,” Juliana Pucey giggled, her large violet eyes focused on him as she cupped her pale face in her hand.
“Sorry, I was trying to burn holes through Weasley with my eyes,” he smirked, shrugging his shoulders a bit as he returned to eating. Laughter echoed throughout his Slytherin friend group.
Conversation flowed easily amongst the Slytherin table that evening. Everyone was excited for the Gryffindor versus Ravenclaw Quidditch match, if only for the party that had been promised in the case of a red and gold win. Slytherin was scheduled to play Hufflepuff the following Thursday, but that was the least of the team’s worries. Their opponent’s game had been declining for years anyway. According to Emma Montague, the house’s queen of gossip, Theodore Knott II had been caught snogging precious Lily Potter in a broom closet. Scorpius could only roll his eyes and hope to Merlin her older brother’s didn’t find out about that. Being friends with a Slytherin was perfectly fine, but snogging one was out of the question. James and Albus’ views often sent mixed signals. Other than that, Hogwarts had been a highly uneventful place.
“Scorpius, m’boy! Hope yer ready fer detention. Miss Rosie has requested the two of yeh meet at m’hut down by the forest at eight o’clock!” Professor Hagrid’s voice boomed from above as Scorpius enjoyed a bite of ice cream.
“I’ll be there, Professor,” he replied politely, smiling slightly as he nodded at the towering professor.
“Glad t’hear! I’ll be seein’ yeh in a bit.” With a hearty chuckle, Hagrid returned to the professors’ table.
“A right bummer you have to serve a detention with the bleeding girl,” Erik Goyle sighed as he rested his hands on his very, plump stomach.
“At least its only one instead of a whole week’s worth,” mentioned Juliana from behind her cup of pumpkin juice.
“How true.” Scorpius grimaced at the thought of being forced to spend every bleeding evening with Rose for a week. “Luckily, it looks like Alyson’s feeling quite better,” he muttered bitterly.
“Right awful luck, Scorp,” Daisy murmured, scooting closer and placing her hand on his arm.
“Tell me about it,” he sighed, pulling his arm from her touch and rising to his feet. “Enjoy your evening everyone. Time to give her hell.”
The table murmured various versions of ‘good luck’ as he stalked off, eyes narrowed in a dark gaze as he watched Rose linger by the Gryffindor tables. A low snarl erupted from his lips as he stalked out of the Great Hall and down the castle steps. The cool, November breeze whipped past him, sending dry leaves across the deserted courtyard. Echoed footsteps sounded off behind him, causing Scorpius to stiffen instantly.
“What flew up your arse?”
“It’s your bloody fault I have to serve this rubbish,” Scorpius growled with his back turned to Rose, hands shoved deep into his robes as he crossed the grounds.
“You called me a--”
“Cow. I’m quite aware what I said, Weasley,” he interrupted coldly.
“You’re such a no good, arrogant prat!” she hissed venomously as she caught up with him, making sure to roughly bump his elbow with her own as she stormed down to Hagrid’s hut.
“Watch it, Malfoy!”
Scorpius chuckled lightly to himself as he retrieved his wand from the inner pocket of his robes, muttering an inaudible ‘lumos’ as they walked further from the castle. He growled in disgust as the wet grass clung to his trousers. The quaint hut appeared off in the distance as the two walked silently, Rose several paces in front of Scorpius.
“Ah! ‘Bout time,” Hagrid chuckled as he swung open the large wooden door. “C’min, c’min. Right cold out there, me thinks.” Hagrid ushered Rose into the hut and Scorpius followed hesitantly. “Yer mum served a detention with me and yer Uncle Harry once upon a time, Rosie,” he explained as he fumbled with a tea kettle. “Yer father joined them, if I remember right,” he added as he glanced at Scorpius.
“Uncle Harry told me about that once, I believe,” she replied warmly, fiddling with a small trinket on a shelf. “I was little. He was trying to scare James and Albus with stories of Voldemort.”
She said the name so effortlessly, as if it were merely a tall tale to scare little children at night, but Scorpius physically cringed at the name. It brought about such dark memories for his family.
“Not to be rude, sir,” Scorpius interjected, receiving a dark scowl from Rose. “But, what sort of detention shall we be serving tonight?” he asked.
“Glad ya asked, m’boy. Ya need to go clean the thestrals’ corrals! Messy little buggers, really.”
Rose’s face paled instantly while Scorpius choked on his own spit.
“Hagrid, its pitch black out there,” the Gryffindor whined softly. “And we won’t be able to see them,” she whispered.
“Oh Rosie, that never stopped yer mum, dad, and Uncle Harry! Where’s that Gryffindor courage? And yeh don’t need to see ‘em to clean their cages,” the half-giant boomed, laughing loudly as he poured himself some tea. “Plus, yeh got Master Malfoy here.”
“Yes, Rosie. I’ll protect you,” Scorpius sneered with a smug grin on his face.
“Ouch, would you stop stepping on my feet?”
“I can’t bloody see anything. You’re hogging the lantern, Malfoy!”
Scorpius sighed heavily as they trekked across the dark, empty forest. He knew it was far from empty, but it felt better to picture it empty rather than creeping with only Merlin knows what. He kicked at rocks and fallen branches as he held the lantern out in front of them. The deeper they went into the Forbidden Forest, the cooler it got, and the more uneasy he became.
“Did you hear that?” Rose whispered, barely avoiding tripping over a particularly nasty root.
“Funny, Weasley,” he laughed dryly.
Softly whinnies followed by loud exhales of air echoed from somewhere close. The sound of hooves beating against the forest floor sent chills up Scorpius’ spine as he edged closer. He turned sharply as something flew past them, brushing the side of his pale face with a light gust of wind.
“Told you there was something,” Rose muttered as she crossed her arms tightly over her chest.
“Probably just a bat. Where’s that Gryffindor courage, Weasley?” Scorpius chuckled softly to himself as he looked over his shoulder to see Rose’s reaction. What he saw wasn’t what he expected. “Rose?” he started, speaking slowly.
Her face was pale and eyes wide. Her lower lip was trembling slightly as she stared off in front of her. He turned slowly, unsure of what he was about to see. His heart began to race in his chest and his palms started to sweat.
And then she slapped him upside the head, causing him to jump a foot in the air.
“You shoulda seen the look on your face, Malfoy!” Rose giggled, clutching her stomach as she walked past a heavily breathing Scorpius.
“I’m going to murder you. Feed you to the bloody threstrals!” he snarled as he regained his composure and raked a hand unsteadily through his hair.
Rose continued to battle her fit of giggles as they crossed the final few meters to the thestrals’ corral. Scorpius hung the lantern on a branch and squinted at the space where he heard the disgruntled neighs of the creatures, but he couldn’t see them.
“I kind of wish I could see them.” Scorpius blinked as he turned to his side, narrowing his gaze at Rose. She turned to look at him and shrugged. “I heard they’re magnificent creatures,” she added defensively.
“You rather sound like Slughorn,” he smirked.
Rose simply glared at him.
“Can we just get this over with? If I have to spend any more time with you than needed, I’m going to be ill,” she commented sarcastically as she pushed a shovel into his chest and walked past him.
“Oh come on, Rosie,” he purred as he walked closer to her, his lips barely centimeters away from her ear. “Everyone knows you just love my company.”
“God, you’re vile,” she shuddered, elbowing him in the stomach.
“What the--ugh,” he groaned as he bent forward, clutching his stomach as he glared darkly at Rose. “What the hell was that for?”
“Go!” she demanded as she picked up another shovel and pointed toward the corral.
Scorpius mumbled curses under his breath as he stalked off toward the gate, Rose following behind. He unlatched the hook and slipped into the enclosure, eyes wide as he carefully edged his way around.
“What on earth are you doing?” he asked as he watched Rose trample forward without a worry. “You’ll piss them off!”
“If you had been listening instead of being so absorbed in yourself, you would’ve heard Hagrid tell you that they’re in the stalls over there,” she reminded him through clenched teeth.
Scorpius couldn’t help roll his eyes. Leave it to perfect Rose to remember everything, to not be flustered in the slightest by the fact that they were in the depths of the Forbidden Forest. At night. By themselves.
They worked in silence, shoveling only Merlin knows what into wheelbarrows, rearranging bales of hay, and cleaning out the bloodstained troughs scattered about the various corners of the corral. It was unbearably disgusting, but if Rose wasn’t going to complain then Scorpius sure as hell wasn’t going to open his mouth and voice his displeasures.
Scorpius peeled his robes off his sweating body and hung them over the railing, wiping his brow with the back of his hand and clearing his throat. Rose sighed heavily, bent over with her hands on her knees. The enclosure was about as clean as it was going to get.
“Please--”Rose stopped to take a deep breath, “Never talk to me again.”
“What are you on about now?” Scorpius sighed as he stood there breathlessly.
“If we don’t talk to one another, we won’t get on each others’ nerves and you won’t force me to hex you,” she explained.
“I didn’t force you to do anything! You just had to go and insult me,” he spat back, turning to look at her with a very unamused expression. “So really, this is all your fault!”
“My fault! I was simply stating a fact. What sane girl would want to drug you with a love potion?” Rose shot back.
“Quite a few, Rosie. I’m sure Albus has told you all about our little conquests,” he smirked.
“You’re a filthy pig, you know that Scorpius?” Scorpius closed the gap between the two, pressing her small frame against the railing. He dragged his fingertip against her cheek as she narrowed her eyes at him. “Get. Away,” she warned.
“I do believe I recall you doing this sort of thing to me this morning, Miss Weasley,” he replied nonchalantly, pressing his body into hers.
Rose’s lips pulled into a taught line as she growled in disgust. A smirk was still playing at Scorpius’ mouth as he challenged her with his gaze, brow raised and mischief sparkling in his eyes.
“Your games don’t work on me,” she whispered.
“Really? Could have fooled me.”
Scorpius began closing the distance between them. He could feel her body stiffen beneath his, see her fists clench at her sides. There was no way he’d kiss her, he just wanted to see her squirm. Albus had told him to make the evening awful for Rose.
A loud snap broke Scorpius’ concentration. The thestrals began neighing loudly, pounding their hooves against the gates of their stalls. Rose shuddered under his body and whipped her head to the side. A silhouette ducked behind the stall and a loud thud followed by a muffled curse alerted the two students to the presence of another.
“What is tha--”
“Sh,” Scorpius hissed, covering Rose’s mouth with his hand. “Stay here,” he mouthed.
“Are you daft?” she whispered, grabbing his wrist and holding him back. “You have no idea who that is or what that is!”
Scorpius yanked his wrist free from her grip and turned away, silently walking toward the stalls with his wand raised. She was right. He should have ran the opposite way, not because it was the cowardly thing to do but because he hadn’t the slightest clue what was back there. He crept to the stall and looked behind it, relieved to see that whatever or whoever was there had ran off.
That didn’t mean that Rose had to know that.
“Run!” Scorpius yelled, darting across the enclosure and grabbing Rose’s wrist with the hand that wasn’t carrying the wand.
Rose yelped in protest but turned on her heel, her legs struggling to keep up with the Slytherin’s long strides. He held onto her wrist, pulling her through the Forbidden Forest quickly. A branch whipped his face, scratching the pale skin of his cheek. His breathing became labored, as did Rose’s, as they stumbled over gnarled roots and hopped over rocks and fallen trees.
The two broke through the tree line and started to cross the vast grassy space between the forest and the castle. Rose suddenly slipped, yanking Scorpius down with her. He went tumbling across the grass, nearly landing on the poor girl as she screamed.
“Wha--what w--as it?” she breathed as she laid there against the dew-covered grass, her chest rising and falling quickly with each labored breath. She was visibly shaking with tears forming in the corners of her eyes.
Scorpius laid there on his back, face turned away from her as he tried to recover. A low chuckle rumbled in his stomach and slowly burst out. Laughter gripped him and he couldn’t stop.
“You--you should’ve seen the look on your face!” he laughed, clutching his sides as he turned to look at Rose.
“You bloody wanker!” she screamed, hitting his dead on the arm and glaring daggers over at him. “I can’t believe you did that!”
“It was priceless. You screamed like a little girl,” Scorpius chuckled, wiping his eyes as he struggled to contain himself. “Oh, wait until I tell Albus.”
“If you even utter a word of this, I swear upon my great great Aunt Muriel’s grave that I will murder you in your sleep!” she hissed after sitting up, breathing heavily through her nose.
“I’d like to see you try,” he shot back smugly. “Oh the black mail I could perform,” Scorpius added sweetly.
And then she smacked him across the head, pushing herself up quickly and stalking back toward the castle without another word. He couldn’t help but chuckle softly despite himself, rising to his feet and making his way inside. Oh, he had definitely made the night a living hell for Rose, but new questions arose in his mind.
Who was creeping through that forest and how the hell was he going to get his robes back before classes the next morning?
A.N.: Just want to say thank you so much for all the feedback. I'm so grateful for every single one, they really inspire me to write more. I want to apologize for taking forever to get this next chapter up. Hope you enjoy and please leave a review :)
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