A/N: Written for Ilia's Every Word Counts Challenge. The word count had to be exactly 500. Let me know what you think!
The Weed That Blooms
Her smile is a secret weapon, the sharpest of barbs. He feels it piercing skin and burrowing to his soul. There it works its magic, without need of wand and words. It's another kind of magic, one he doesn't understand.
He wants to, though. He yearns to know the truth.
Her eyes are bright and fierce, her lips the colour of her namesake. A rose. Pretty petals and thorns sharp enough to draw blood. She is aflame in his mind, like the vibrant streak of her hair.
To stand close is to feel the slow-burn thawing out his reserve. It drips and drips, ice into water. He's not safe. He's not sure he ever was.
She's like a nymph, barefoot and carefree in the woods. A lure to soften the steely resolve ingrained in him by his forebears. His name calls to him, wrapped in soft syllables that fall from her tongue. Scorpius.
She's a siren. She'll send him crashing to the rocks. A blissful death, no doubt. The end of all he knows.
His father warned him, as others did before, that temptation can war with his duty. He's to find someone: staid and true and pure.
She seems pure to him, but the mantra says she's not. The blood that runs thick in her veins is tainted with a poison. It shouldn't matter. It's a reason he can't voice, not aloud, not to her. But it's there all the same. He has a legacy to pass on.
He doesn't want to though. He wants to give in, to let the gentle pads of her fingertips run across his face. He wants to watch the bloom of colour rise upon her cheeks. Rose petals of his own making.
She's not like him, stoic and removed. She dances through life to a rhythm he can't hear. Unbound by custom and open to the enticing call of chance. In the quietest of moments, when night owns the sky and he is free to ponder, he imagines all manner of scenarios.
Ones in which he is free and so is she. Ones in which he can wrap her hand in his, run barefoot with her through the thorny mass.
That's what life is, he knows, a garden full of canker and of weeds. They burrow deep in the earth, downtrodden by the flowers and trees, those nurtured to rise up and stake their claim over all.
There are some who would tell him that she, his pretty wide-eyed temptress, is one of those. A filthy seedling corrupting the lush green that surrounds. But she's not. She's a full bloom, softer and pinker than the rest.
He wants to risk the sharp blade of her thorns and pluck her from the bunch. He wants to keep her to himself. Red hair and pink skin on his white sheets. He wants to wake up to the scent of her skin, a cloying perfume that warps the senses.
Lips on lips and hand on heart.