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Chapter 3 : Chores and Fresh Air
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Scorpius Malfoy felt more alone then he’d felt in ages. It didn’t matter that he was in a castle surrounded by hundreds of people for all he knew he was on an island all by himself. There was something about sitting in the middle of the common room with the body of his dead best friend that made him feel as though he was lost.
He didn’t know how long he sat there, his hand clutched in that of his dead best friend, before the prefect returned with the Headmistress and a hoard of others. Among them he recognized their head of house and their Herbology professor, whom he knew was a person friend of the Potters.
“Oh dear.” Professor McGonagall muttered, quickly making her way over towards the two boys. The school nurse was among the adults, and quickly made her way over to the cold body, confirming that the boy was in fact dead. For a moment the Headmistress stood in silence, clearly startled that a student had been murdered in cold blood in the common room. Years ago many had perished in the halls of the school, but most had thought that those days were long over now.
“We’ll need to contact the Aurors, and get the parents here.” She instructed, clearly struggling to keep her voice even. Whoever was sent to the Potter household would have to be a brave soul; Minerva thought that Harry had already lost too much in his life to have to deal with this.
“I’ll head over to the ministry.” A voice offered, before heading out the door. The remaining professors glanced from person to person for a moment, none of them wanting to be the one to break the news to savior to the wizarding world.
From his spot on the floor Scorpius wondered if they would all refuse leaving James or Lily to tell their own parents. The thought that they could be that selfish made the boy laugh and all eyes turned to glare at him. He knew that it was an inappropriate time, but he couldn’t help himself. There was a dead boy sitting right beside him and there were a bunch of adults standing around arguing about who had to go alert the parents as though it was a chore no one wanted to do.
“Mr. Malfoy!” Minerva called in a warning tone. She clearly didn’t see things the way that Scorpius did and despite the fact that he knew he should be stopping he couldn’t help himself. Soon the young Malfoy was rolling about the floor as though he was at some sort of party rather than the site of the murder.
“Someone needs to restrain that boy.” One of the Professors muttered, and within moments the nurse was at his side muttering a charm that caused him to go limp. Glancing down at the boys hand she realized that it was entangled with that of Albus’s, and she gently pulled it away.
“I believe that he was just overwhelmed.” The woman explained, knowing that stressful situations could often lead to some strange behaviors.
“We still need someone to head over to the Potters, and then we need all the prefects alerted, we’ll keep everyone in their dormitories tomorrow until this is sorted out.” Minerva explained, hoping that she wouldn’t have to do the deed herself. Although she would not mind, she felt as though she had already delivered too much bad news to the boy in the years that she’d known him. This was going to hit Harry Potter hard and they all knew it.
“I’ll go.” Neville Longbottom declared, knowing that someone was going to have to step up. Neville had known Harry since they were eleven, and while it wouldn’t make the news any easier to take he knew that it would be some sort of a comfort to the Potter family.
“Thank you Neville.” The headmistress replied, wishing the man luck as he disappeared from view.
“I need James Potter.” A Slytherin prefect announced, illuminating the entirety of the Gryffindor boys dorm. Unlike the prefect sent to Ravenclaw tower, the boy didn’t have much patience to figure out where the boy was and figured that the best way to take care of things would be to wake the entire room at once.
“What the hell?” One of the boys exclaimed, rolling over and covering their face with a pillow. His words caused others to wake, and within a moment the room was a mess of whining boys who wanted very much to kill the boy who had pulled them from their slumber. There was a Quidditch match the next morning and seeing as there were several team members in the room none of them were very happy about it.
“James Potter, I need him.” The prefect repeated, clearly having no sympathy for the sleepy boys. After all most of them would get to go back to sleep in moments while he’d be up all night with crying first years who were afraid that someone was going to come and kill them too. Considering the amount of Aurors flooding the place it would be impossible, but some of them didn’t seem to have any common sense.
“Ughgsdpkg.” A raven haired boy called, rolling about for a moment before her finally pulled himself free of the tangles of his sheets. “I am coming, hold on a minute.” He corrected, doubting that the boy would have any idea what he’d said the first time. The other boys in the room seemed relieved that James had actually woken, as it meant they would be free to go back to sleep any moment.
“Can you put that out, he’s up.” A voiced questioned, and with a roll of his eyes the prefect obliged. James stumbled about in the dark for a few moments, trying to figure out where his shoes were before deciding that socks would have to do. He snatched his wand from under his pillow and pulled on a jumper before appearing before the prefect.
“Where to?” He questioned, hoping that this wasn’t some sort of sick joke where the Slytherin team would lock him in a closet so that he couldn’t play the following morning. The boy hadn’t tried to keep it quiet or his identity unknown though, which made James doubt that he was trying to pull something over him.
“The Headmistress office.” The boy explained. “There’s something that you need to deal with.” He added, deciding that he didn’t want to be the one to tell James. Having to deal with scared first years back in his common room was enough work; he didn’t need a bawling seventh year on his hands as well.
While it wasn’t much, it was enough of an explanation for James who figured that it had something to do with Lily and James. Knowing his sister she’d make a big deal over something stupid, like if one of the other girls had given her an awful midnight haircut. The more he thought about it though, the less that even made sense, and he hoped that he wasn’t about to get framed for a prank that wasn’t even his. James never had a problem taking credit for something that he actually did, but he wasn’t dumb enough to pull something the night before a big game.
Humming to himself as he walked, knowing that it was going to be a long walk, he allowed for different ideas to pass in and out of his mind, and he tried to come up with something reasonable. He wondered if he really should trust the boy, as he could easily have been talked into leading him out of the common room by some of the stupid members on the Slytherin team.
“This doesn’t have anything to do with tomorrow’s game, does it?” James questioned. “Because I’ve got my wand so you’re not going to be able to just shove me in a closet and run away.”
The prefect laughed, finding it funny how in such a horrible situation all the boy could focus on was the Quidditch match. Granted, he was oblivious to the fact that any sort of tragedy had taken place but it still caused him to come across as awful self-centered.
“No, it’s something to do with your brother.” The prefect countered, figuring that it couldn’t kill him to give him some sort of information about what was going on. After all, he’d never been strictly instructed not to tell the boy what had happened.
“What happened to him?” James demanded, knowing that it had to be something serious. Albus was nothing like Lily and he wouldn’t have gone for help in the middle of the night unless there was a serious reason. The prefect didn’t seem to want to answer the question, but James was lacking the patience to wait until he reached the office to get clued in on what was happening. “You clearly know, just tell me.” His voice was aggressive, and he hoped that it would be enough to get the prefect to listen to him.
“He’s dead James.” The boy muttered, figuring that he owed him the explanation. James froze, not seeing why he was bothering to take the extra steps just so that he could see his sister crying in their parent’s arms. The last thing James wanted at this moment was to be confined to a stuffy office, he needed to get out and he needed out now.
“James, I-are you okay?” The prefect questioned, realizing that things clearly weren’t going over very well with the boy. He internally groaned, knowing that he was going to get in loads of trouble for doing this. The professor probably doubted that he’d be stupid enough to tell James, which was why it had never been specifically instructed of him.
“I need to go-just, I’ll be on the pitch.” James muttered, his eyes hollow. Turning on his heel he took off in the direction he’d just come from as quickly as he could, knowing that he needed to get fresh air.
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