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Chapter 7 : Unflushed
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Deborah Ann Woll as Lucy Weasley
Keira Knightley as Rose Weasley
Karen Gillan as Lily Potter
Thank God for Nigel. Really. If he hadn’t been there, then there was no doubt that Rose would still be plastered beyond relief, probably dancing the Hokey-Pokey in the middle of the dance floor, all while holding a bottle of Ogden’s. They wouldn’t have managed to find a cab. Heck, they wouldn’t even have managed to get Rose into the car if he didn’t carry her all the way there.
Lucy could see what Molly meant now. About Nigel being a quality bloke. He was such an angel for taking care of Rose, despite her less than amusing state. Had Lucy had the chance, she would have given Nigel a real thank you instead of the rushed one she was forced to shout out as the car pulled away from the Cauldron.
The entire ride back to Rose’s apartment had been spent thinking about him. Lucy felt like a little first year again, having her first crush on the boy that every girl wanted. But duty called. Lucy wouldn’t afford to be a droopy little schoolgirl, at least not until Rose was sorted out.
They dragged her up to her flat and threw her on the bed before going on their own little gestures to help out. Lucy was just like her mum in the sense that she believed all the problems of the world could be solved by putting the kettle on.
Lily grabbed Rose’s mobile and started dialing every take-away restaurant within a three-mile radius.
And Molly, being the closest to Rose, took the unique pleasure of cleaning her up and changing her for bed. All while pestering her about the dangers of drinking alone.
To think, this was supposed to have been a night to cheer Lucy up. None of the girls knew, but Lucy was fully aware about how worried they were about her. Tonight would have been a glorified suicide watch over at her apartment had Rose not stumbled into Little Dublin.
So this was what it was like from the other end of the stick. Taking care of someone instead of the one being taken care of.
Wasn’t bad at all actually.
As the kettle whistled and the food came in, all four girls squeezed into Rose’s bed, bathrobes on and forks at the ready. It took nearly half an hour of persuasion before they finally got Rose to talk about it and when she did, all they could do was stare.
Rose Weasley. Heartbroken.
Wait. What was that? Did the entire would just bawl over in shock? Why yes it did.
“Why didn’t know tell us before?” Lily moved in to hug her cousin. “I mean, we knew about Mitchell, but we always thought he was just some tosser you had a bit of fun with. Not…you know…loved.”
Molly shook her head, stabbing a fork into her chips, probably visualizing it as Mitchell’s heart. “The bloody wanker. Just give me the word and I’ll call up my buddies in Gringotts. We can have him re-assigned to Siberia. See how he and his wife will like that. Bastard!”
“You don’t get it, Molls.” Rose hid under the pillow and curled up like a ball. “He’s an unflushbable.”
“A bloody what? Do you need more coffee, because you’re not making any sense love.”
“Come off it Molly! You know what I mean. Unflushable. It’s like you’re brain is a toilet and he’s the loo-roll bobbing around. No matter how many times you press flush, he won’t go down. You’ll always think of him. You’ll always consider the ‘what ifs’. Un-bloody-flushable.”
Lily wrinkled her nose at the thought. “Now that is just disgusting, Rose. I think you need more tea.” It took a lot to jar Lily Potter, especially when it came to the realm of the disgusting. Handling children all day, wiping noses, helping kids go to the toilet, making sure things are chocolate and not poop…not a job for the faint hearted.
Still, Rose looked dead serious. Puffy, red-eyed and grabbing tissues, she did not look like she was anything but serious. “I don’t need more tea. I just…I need to bloody stop thinking about him. He’s a bastard! Gorgeous said so himself and I really should hate him. I should! I really should! And I want to hate him. I really do. He bloody broke my heart, tore it up into pieces, set in on fire and sent me the ashes via airmail.”
“Then why don’t you hate him? I’m all for that, Rose.”
“Because…” Rose hesitated a bit. She looked as if she wanted to avoid the subject all together. Maybe even lie. But Molly’s question was too heavy to do either of those things. Rose had no choice but to tell the truth lest her best friend shake it out of her. Rose sighed. “Because…he’s Mitchell Bloody Phaeton and I can’t help but think that I still kind of…a little…never really…you know…got over him.”
Weclome to the Twilight Zone. Where zebras have spots and Rose Weasley is something akin to a hopeless romantic.
Lucy scooted a little closer to Rose. She put an arm around her and took the pillow away. Rose’s eyes were red from the angry tears she wanted to cry and Lucy couldn’t help but relate. Unflushable. The One That Got Away. The Ex. Same bloke, different names. It was a breed of guy she was quite familiar with.
“Don’t worry Rose,” Lucy kissed the top of her head. “It’ll get better eventually.”
“Luce is right, love,” Lily chimed in with her boundless support and sunny disposition. “We’ve all had unflushables, I think. I know I have.”
Now that got Lily a strange look from everyone. “Who?” they asked.
But it was Molly’s eyes that widened as soon as the idea had enough time to sink in. She shook her head vigorously, throwing a pillow at Lily. "No Lily! No. He is not an unflushable."
“Oi, pipe down Molls! I thought this was my pity party,” Rose swatted Molly off. “Go on Lils.”
Lily took a deep breath, closing her eyes and taking a moment for herself before actually breathing out the name. "Scorpius Malfoy."
Simultaneously, the girls threw munchies at Lily as if she were a bad comedian wasting their time. In effect, she was wasting their time because they already knew this story. They played witness to it, after all. And they were there when Lily mourned over "the one that got away" that was Scorpius Malfoy.
Nevertheless, she continued. "He was gorgeous. Absolutely brilliant. I honestly thought I was going to be Mrs. Scorpius Malfoy one day."
"Oh how wrong you turned out to be."
"Shut it, Molls! How the bloody hell was I supposed to know that he was gay!"
Lily had a point there. Scorpius was for all intents and purposes, a certified dream boat. A pre-teen fantasy come to life. He was handsome, a gentleman, smart and funny as hell. Lucy remembered those awkward years filled with pimples and rejection. Days where she envied Lily for landing a bloke like Scorpius. After all, everyone at the Hufflepuff table couldn't help but stare across the Great Hall whenever Scorpius walked from one end of the room to the other just to sit next to Lily. Oh so many hours spent lustfully watching him open jar after jar of marmalade. So many wolf-whistles restrained while staring at his bum as he reached for something on the top shelf. So pathetic attempts at literally bumping into him in the halls just to brush up against his washboard abs.
Poor sods fools, they were. Poor innocent little sods.
Indeed, how were they, the unknowing, salavating, objectifying population of Hogwarts to know that he was fruiter than a muffin basket in Elton John's pantry?
As if hearing Lucy's thoughts, Lily dived under a pillow and stifled a scream. "I turned Scorpius Malfoy gay!" she said.
The rising levels of torment and torture seemed to feed Rose's sarcasm. It woke her up from her pity-pot coma and shoved her mid-way back to rights. Rose gave a light laugh as she sat up, grabbing the pillow from Lily's head and hugging it close to herself.
"For goodness sake, love," she managed with a scratchy voice. "He was already gay. You were just his beard."
"It still hurt though. I was still bloody devastated."
"But Scorpius wasn't even a bastard. He was a good bloke. An amazing bloke! He’s my best mate aside from you lot!"
"That was gay, Rose! What part of that do you not understand!"
"He still doesn't count as an Unflushable!"
In true Molly fashion, Lucy’s older sister shut Rose and Lily up with one loud whistle. "Oh for goodness sake! Settle down you two. Lucy, you’re being quiet over there. Why don't you be the judge. Is Scorpius Malofy an Unflushable, despite being one of the good ones?"
Lucy bit her lip and thought for a while. She tried her best to be objective, what with Scorpius Malfoy being on of her first crushes as in Hogwarts. Damn Molly for putting her on the spot. "Well, he was an amazing guy. Tops. And like Rose said, he’s one of her best mates so practically makes him one of us…in more ways than one. Nevertheless kind of falls into the bastard category, if only because he used Lily as a beard instead of just coming out to the world."
"Result!" Lily forgot herself and yelped with glee.
"Settle down you muppet. No need to rub it in Rose’s face. So he's an Unflushable. Hurray for you love," Molly ate a huge fist-full of popcorn. "How did you get over it, then?"
Lily dawned an impish grin and Lucy could swear that a giggle escaped her as she answered.
"Toby," Lily said, earning a collective outburst of protest from all of them.
"Now that is out of order! Not fair! That is not helpful at all!" Molly threw her hands up in the air before falling back on a mountain of pillows.
"What do you mean? Moral of the story: there's life after a disaster. What's unfair about that?"
"It's unfair because yours is the exception that proves the rule. How often do you hear the story, 'oh my heart was broken in half by a selfish, uncaring, bastard. But don't worry! I met my soulmate in the end.' Really Lily! Jog on." Rose blew a raspberry as she gave Lily the thumbs down.
"Well I'm sorry if you feel that way, but Scorpius is my Unflushable and that’s that." Lily laughed, crossing her arms. “Besides. Toby and I…it’s not as much of a picnic as you guys think.”
“What do you mean? Have you guys been fighting?” Lucy asked worriedly.
“No. God Luce, no. it’s nothing like that. I mean, thank God it’s nothing like that. It’s just…well that’s it. We don’t fight.”
“Champagne bloody problems. Like I said Lils, jog on.”
“I’m serious, Rose. Toby and I don’t fight. We never fight. We always find a compromise, or we’re happy to try the other person’s suggestion instead. It’s like we’re a collective all of a sudden. Toby and Lily instead of being a Toby and a Lily. It’s hard to explain.”
“Oh wah wah,” Molly piped in. “The lad is madly in love with you, Lils. Vice versa as well. Not fighting enough, that’s a bloody blessing. It just means you’re the supportive couple in the history of couples. Nothing wrong with that.”
“I guess,” Lily said tentatively. “But I just have this feeling. I don’t know.”
“You two don’t need to fight,” Lucy smiled. “Toby is so lucky to have you. He just knows it, that’s all.”
“And for the record,” Molly threw a marshmallow at Lily. “I don’t care what Lucy says. I still say Scorpius Malfoy isn’t an unflushable.”
Lily’s smile began to grow as she picked up the chucked treat and popped it in her mouth. “Alright then, Molls. Show me how it’s done. Who’s yours then?”
“Richard Parry. Butt you don’t know him.”
“Wait, wait,” Lucy spoke up. “Richard Parry? As in Richard Parry the bloke who you met in the Floo station? That’s not an unflushable, Molls. You never even went out on a date!”
“But that didn’t mean that I wasn’t crushed.”
“I lived with you and I don’t even know who this guy is,” Lily put in.
“Right. Again, this is supposed to be my pity-party and I need to be in the loop. Will somebody please tell me who the bloody hell is Richard Parry!”
There seemed to be a sense of mortification thick in Molly’s expression now. But she was a tough little cookie and with a deep breath of firm resolve, she went straight into business mode and answered. “Richard Parry was a man I kept running into at the Floo Station. Everyday for three months. We always arrived at the exact same time. We talked. We brought each other coffee. We ranted about work. It was practically a relationship.”
“Except it wasn’t.”
“Traitor. I thought you were a romantic, Luce.”
“I want to be romantic about it. But…sorry love, but if anything, you guys were friends. Floo station friends. You didn’t even want to ask him out.”
Molly’s eyes narrowed at Lucy and she took three treacle tarts and at them in succession. Ah the Weasley appetite, the bitch that it was. “Alright. So I wasn’t exactly head over heels for him. But in my defense, I’ve always thought about what it would be like if I actually went out with him. He seemed like a nice enough guy. He wasn’t an ax murderer.”
“You don’t know that,” Rose pointed out. “Or you know, he could be like Mitchell Buggering Arsewipe Phaeton. Married.”
“Alright. I’ll admit that. But…I still think about it. He’s one of the few men in the world who aren’t intimidated by me or my job. Do you know how hard it is to find a man who’s not going to be scared off because my paycheck is larger than his.”
“Find a guy who has a bigger paycheck then.”
“That’s not the point, Rose. The point is, I want someone who understands that I work. That I love my work and that it’s part of me. Not just a flaw he thinks will go away eventually. Richard seemed like that kind of guy.”
“Then why didn’t you ask him out, Molls?” Lucy asked. “If you saw some potential? Why didn’t you go for it?”
“Because,” Molly sighed, running her fingers through her hair. “I was always in a rush. I had a fire to catch. I had someone on hold on my mobile. I needed to rush out to get reception…you know me. Anyway, he got married last year. Invited me to his wedding, if you can believe that. Would have gone if it wasn’t for the Broom Regulation hearings,” Molly tried to laugh but Lucy knew her sister too well to ignore that look on her face. Rose and Lily noticed it too.
Pushing away the food, they all came in to hug her.
Lucy kissed her sister’s cheek and squeezed her hand. “Alright. Alright. Unflushable it is then. Didn’t have to go through so much trouble to convince us.”
Molly choked out a laugh.
“That’s right. Besides, how many times do I have to say that this is my pity party and you lot are no help at all,” Rose smirked.
But they had helped. Rose was smiling again. She was joking again. She was drinking tea instead of whiskey again. Of course, she wasn’t set to rights just yet, but that would come in time.
They spent the rest of the night eating junk food and watching old movies on the telly. Mitchell Phaeton, Scorpius Malfoy and Richard Parry were momentarily forgotten and in that night, it seemed as if the world was brilliant.
Hours passed by and, one by one, the girls fell asleep. All without even noticing that they hadn’t asked Lucy who her unflushable was.
She was glad no one asked. Because if they had, then how would she even answer?
If Lucy were a three-act play, then the first act would not be the day she was born. Instead, it would be the day she got her first kiss. For in Lucy's romantically inclined reasoning, that was when she first experienced living and not just life.
His name was Fergus Hunter and he was a boy she knew in Hogwarts. He was eleven and Lucy was as well. Fergus had bright red hair, much like her own, and wore thick, dark rimmed glasses because he was practically as blind as a bat. Fergus had asked to kiss her because he thought that if he kissed Lucy then his friends would like him better. After all, what little boy did not want the notoriety of being a lady-killer from a young age? Sadly, Lucy did not know this. As far as she was concerned, the only reason Fergus wanted to kiss her was because he wanted to kiss her. Subsequently, the only reason she wanted to kiss Fergus was the fact that she wanted to be kissed, never mind which sorry sod gave it to her.
It was a wet kiss, more like a spin cycle in a washing machine than the earth shattering experience she'd expected to have. In those romantic comedies, when the girl finally got kissed by the boy, the world would turn around and they would be the only people standing still. It didn't matter if you were standing in the snow in nothing but your underwear or running towards each other from opposite ends of the beach only to crash in each other's arms. It always ended the same way.
Her first kiss was not that moment.
But being the hopeful person that she was, Lucy was not disheartened by this. If it wasn't this kiss, then it would be the next. Thus began Lucy the Play...Lucy the Drama...Lucy the Quest to Find her First Earth Shattering Kiss.
Thirteen years after Fergus "The Let Down" Hunter, you could say that Lucy succeeded in her quest. She'd found her earth-shattering kiss. In fact, she'd found approximately ten times since. One for each boyfriend she dated after Fergus.
Lucy had the fault of having a tremendously huge heart, full of love dying to be given to someone who deserved it. Each time she dated a new guy, Lucy genuinely believed that he was the one. That they would last forever. That nothing in the world could stop them from ending up down the isle. Sadly, out of those ten boyfriends (eleven if you counted Fergus), none measured up to the task. Something always went wrong. The latest of which was Liverpool.
The first time Paul Mason took her on a date, she thought the world of him. He was, in a word, dashing, and he swept her off her feet before they even arrived at the restaurant. Kissing him was like kissing a lit match. Flares jumped out. There might as well have been an orchestra behind them playing something from Puccini. They dated three months after that and each day, Lucy felt those flares burn brighter and brighter. When they went out, it shattered Lucy's world.
It was hard trying to explain it to the girls. Apart from Lily (and her dear Toby), Lucy doubted that any of them had every felt that. That firework quality in a relationship. Yes, Rose had Mitchell and Molly had her work, but that wasn't true love. Not to Lucy. Because when Mitchell left, Rose was stronger and better for it. If Molly were to get fired, she would just look for another job. But with every break up Lucy went through, she felt as if a little piece of her heart chipped away, never to be glued back on there again.
Truth was, there was no such thing as an unflushable for her. Every single boyfriend of hers since Fergus Hunter...what the hell! Every single boyfriend of hers including Fergus Hunter was an unflushable. They'd all changed her, whether it be for better or for worse. They all were unforgettable. They all held their own "what ifs". Numerous as they were and as much heartbreak as they'd caused Lucy, there was no denying that they'd all meant something to her. If they didn't, then she woulnd't even have be dating them.
When Lucy loved, she loved with her whole heart and when each of them disappointed, they shattered the poor thing into pieces.
The only thing that cured her every time was hope. Hope that there was someone better out there. Hope that it wasn't the last act in her play, not yet. That she'd been wrong about those other guys and that there was still an earth shattering kiss to come.
If Lucy were a play, then her central theme would be hope. Hope was the only thing that kept her from giving up all together.
Too occupied with the last of the washing, Lucy didn't even notice the smile that was spreading across her lips.
It was still there. She had a standing date with Nigel Parkey for goodness sake! The man all women came to the Leaky Cauldron to ogle at. Even in her sorry state, tears, mess and all, he still asked her out and of course she'd said yes. Why the bloody hell shouldn't she? It was the universe calling and it didn't have to ring twice. If the letters N-I-G-E-L that didn't spell hope, then surely G-O-R-G-E-O-U-S did. And it wasn't just the fact that he was good looking (although that was certainly a very encouraging factor). It was the fact that he was a top-notch guy. He had a stable job. In fact he had two. He gave great advice. He was funny, intelligent, sensitive. Rose raved about him behind his back, and lately, so had Molly.
Nigel would be earth-shattering, he just had to be. And if he wasn't, well, there was still hope.
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