Chapter 15 : Chapter Fourteen: A Kiss and a Strange Bond
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What was worse is that I wanted to know the details and Albus reluctantly gave them to me. Apparently with Malfoy…there was a couch involved and some heavy touching? Oh… and some jeering.
Yeah. Kill me now.
Seriously, take a freaking wand and avada kedavra my ass.
I bet Rose would do it if I asked her politely. So would Lily. Only Lily would first cast the freaking Cruciatus curse on me, and then avada kedavra my ass.
Then there’s James. My James. I don’t even want to think about facing him right now. What I did was unforgivable. I don’t have a damn clue what I said to him but I know that it must’ve been really bad. I probably went and attacked his pride. That’s the one thing he’ll murder anyone about. The one thing he ever told me that he was insecure about.
He hated being afraid. He hated being compared to his father. I mean, who wouldn’t? Especially if you’re the eldest son of Harry Potter.
Everyone expects him to be the next hero of the wizarding world if there is some screwed up war, to be as good of a quidditch player as Harry was. Okay, he’s got that one down, but he’s really taken the savior of the wizarding world shit to heart.
If I said anything about that, I will sincerely shove my wand up my arse and then go shun society by living with the centaurs in the forbidden forest.
And then the centaurs would freak out about planets and how they can’t permit humans anywhere near their premises and then they’d murder me. That would be the end of Elaquay Smithson.
After what seemed like hours of torturous crying, trips to the bathroom to vomit my guts out, and a pounding headache, I finally sat up in my bed…realizing that the nausea had passed, my stomach felt severely empty, and my head was no longer a jackhammer fest.
My throat was sore and there was an awful taste in my mouth. I was still in the same attire as this morning when I left the party…and it reeked of sweat and vomit. I crinkled my nose and lifted a sore hand to run through my hair. No luck. It was so tangled that I couldn’t even get my fingers into the massive maelstrom of fiery hell.
My eyes felt dry and they stung with unshed tears. What time was it anyways?
I looked over at the little clock on Rose’s bedside and realized that it was about six thirty PM. Everyone was probably having dinner now. The idea of food made my stomach turn inside out and I quickly got rid of any thoughts of a feast.
With dread, I recalled what had happened in a clear state of mind. I saw Elisha and James going at it, got really upset, fucked myself over with alcohol shit that I know wasn’t firewhiskey, blacked out, woke up in nothing but my bra and underwear surrounded by a multitude of bodies in the room of requirement, came back to the common room only to be shunned by Lily and Rose…and then I found out that I had stripped, pissed James off, kissed his girlfriend and Scorpius Malfoy.
Out of all the people…why them?
Those are the two worst choices that my drunken mind could have made.
Oh Merlin, now everyone’s going to think that I play for the other team as well.
That thought just made me realize that I can’t stay here forever and that I will HAVE to go out in public, despite what everyone witnessed. Despite the fact that I am now, most likely, completely friendless.
If even Rose hates me, then I don’t even want to think about the rest of the Weasley-Potters. They must be plotting my death right now. The only person I could rely on was Albus, but I don’t see him around school that often. Plus, it’ll be hard for him to try and console me, because knowing his family, they will badger and relentlessly trash talk him for being seen with me.
I have also lost Melody and Jeremy because they are Derrick’s best friends. Derrick is my boyfriend….or was, most likely. I know that he was there, and he probably either saw the whole thing or heard about it from someone else.
I have no one else.
I never thought that this would happen.
I am so stupid.
I am never drinking again. Ever. Never ever ever ever ever ever ever.
I can’t get the look of hurt and hatred present in Rose’s eyes as she yelled at me, as she ripped apart any evidence of our friendship. The way that she broke any of my history with the burrow and her family by ripping the necklace that James gave me off of my neck.
I have nothing left.
I have never felt like such a trashy whore in my life.
I felt the lump in my throat reappear again, but I bit my lip and resisted the urge to break down in sobs. I can’t just keep crying about this. It won’t change anything. I’ll just have to face the consequences. I will go to classes, pay attention, attend feasts, sit at the table with the rest of civilization, and attend Quidditch practices with my head held high. It doesn’t matter that I won’t have anywhere to sit in the great hall, that I won’t have anyone to talk to, that I won’t be hearing endearing things anytime soon.
Just get it over with.
You screwed it up, Els.
I forced myself out of my bed and went to my suitcase. I pulled out an oversized grey sweater and some clean jeans and set them on my bed. I then walked to the bathroom and hopped in the shower, letting the hot scented water wash off all traces of the brutal night I can’t remember. Once I was done, I dried myself off, wrapped my towel around my body and changed into the large sweater and jeans. I manually put my damp hair up into a messy ponytail and took a deep breath before heading back to the bathroom and brushing my teeth four times over. I needed to get every nook and cranny to successfully wash out the alcohol, the vomit, the words I said to James, and the nasty ass Elisha/Scorpius saliva. Ugh…so nasty.
I gazed at myself in the mirror, expecting to see a strange foreign girl stare back…a girl who was broken, drunk, and resembling some sort of prostitute. But no…I just saw Elaquay Smithson as she always is. Same crazy red hair, same silvery-green eyes, same freckles, same button nose….maybe my skin was a bit paler and I had dark circles under my eyes, but it was still me.
I think that it was gave me a sliver of hope. A small hope that tells me that things will be alright in time.
So I sipped another cup of water for good measure, walked down the stairs to find the common room empty, then proceeded out through the portrait of the pink lady to go to the feast. They should be serving the desert now.
My stomach flipped in anxiousness and I gulped, my heart pounding. I knew that this wasn’t going to be fun, but I have to start now to get used to it.
Okay, one step forward. Another step forward.
Okay, I’ll cut the dramatics. It’s not like I’m walking to the freaking guillotine or something.
No, I’m about to be drawn and quartered.
I ignored the short cut through the tapestry and decided to take the long way down to the great hall, taking the long marble staircases and passing by portraits. It had already started.
Many paintings were already either pointing or laughing rudely at me, especially the ones with the barbaric looking medieval men. The more sophisticated paintings were tutting at me in dismay.
“…Heard this one caused quite the mayhem last night….”
“…Never heard students talk so horribly of a student since that Harry Potter…”
“But at least he did something heroic. This girl caused such promiscuous and wretched disgrace in the name of Gryffindor and morality…”
“I can fucking hear you, you dipshits!!” I seethed at the paintings, my blood boiling and my stomach churning. I’m telling you! Vending machines with licorice wands are far more worth your time!!
I was already starting to regret my decision to come out of the common room. Maybe I don’t have to face this. Maybe I can just give up now and run into the forbidden forest and my bones will become some sort of strange centaur contraption that is used for capturing humans and determining the haziness of Pluto….
My heart throbbed painfully as I finally reached the entrance to the great hall. I peered in from the corner, looking into the see the friendly chatter, laughter, and the piles of food that everyone was digging into. Usually, the smell would’ve lured me in regardless of my social situation, but due to my constant throwing up and current nausea mixed with nerves, the thought of food made me want to regurgitate.
I let my eyes skim over the Gryffindor table. It was kind of hard to see from where I was, but I thought I caught a flash of curly red hair somewhere at the far end of the table. The thought of Rose made me want to vomit up slugs. I heard that her dad did that in his second year.
I don’t want to go in. If I go in, everyone will stare.
Then why did I come down here? Are you a freaking Gryffindor or not, Smithson?
Yes, yes I am. But I would rather singlehandedly wrestle a dementor unarmed than walk into the great hall right now.
A dementor couldn’t harm me. I don’t have a soul. Hahahaha. Okay, now is not the time for bad ginger jokes.
I took a deep breath and made myself known to the great hall.
One head turned. Then another and another. It was like a freaking domino effect. I heard the hissing and whispering before I could even see one single facial expression. I didn’t want to see any facial expressions. No eye contact. Just find a place and sit down to show everyone that you maintain some dignity.
“Always knew Americans were trouble.”
“Hey Smithson, why don’t you go snog Sarah Corner. I’m sure she’d enjoy it!”
No. No, no, no, no, no.
I couldn’t help myself as I lifted my eyes to the Gryffindor table. I skimmed it, trying to ignore the dark, glowering, and mocking looks from my own house. I finally found Rose. Her eyes were fixed furiously on her plate as she shoveled food into her mouth, as if she were a vacuum. Her shoulders were stiff and her face was blotchy, as if she’d been crying. Next to her was Hugo, who was looking anywhere but where I was.
Down a few people sat Lily and Dom. Lily didn’t avoid me. No, her whole body was turned toward me….waves of absolute wrath and hatred resonating from her tiny gorgeous body. Her usually twinkling brown eyes were bloodshot and dark. Dom just looked at her plate dejectedly, a look of sorrow plastered on her face.
When I met eyes with Lily, she gave me the equivalent of the middle finger, only in British form. Normally, I would just laugh because I always found the British insult to look like a peace sign and it made me think of Oregon, but now I felt the pain stab me like a twisting dagger or a mutated form of the Cruciatus curse. I quickly turned my head from her and kept walking, searching for any empty seats at the Gryffindor table.
Nothing. No seats. Here I was, the only one walking around like an idiot while I endured insults and catcalls. No warmth, no love, no acknowledgement.
No friends. No family.
Molly and Lucy both shot me evil glares as I glanced in their direction. Louis and Fred both made gagging noises as I went past.
But there was no James. No James and no Elisha. I don’t know if I was relieved or horrified at the fact. I felt sick. That’s what I was. Sick, confused, and disoriented. I feel like I had a huge chunk of my life taken away from me…even though it was just one night. How could one drunken night cause this much damage?
And…and…why weren’t the professors doing anything? I glanced at their table and they all had their eyes on their food. Were they seriously turning a blind eye on this?
I don’t remember a fucking thing! This isn’t fair!
A deep voice resonated from behind me. A voice that I would’ve liked to hear if this were a few weeks ago. Now the voice was tight and angry. I spun around to come face to face with my boyfriend, Derrick. Or ex-boyfriend, now most likely.
He looked a bit pale and exhausted, but he looked recovered from last night. Except his eyes were dark and his lips were tight. Shit.
I hadn’t really processed the idea that I would have a talk with Derrick, but now it seems completely inevitable. I just hope that he isn’t so much of a heartless bastard to scream at me in the middle of the hall.
“Can we go outside for a moment?” He asked.
Okay, he isn’t a heartless bastard.
I nodded mutely and followed him outside the hall, ignoring the looks and jeers. He walked at a fast pace, as if I was some sort of contagion he was trying to avoid.
Once we exited the babble of the hall, he led me down a dark corridor before he stopped at a classroom door, swung it open and ushered me in. The room was dark with stacks of unused books near the front of the classroom. The window let in streams of dark color from the sunset sky, which illuminated the room in a soft eerie glow.
Derrick slammed the door shut behind him in a forceful manner. My heart hammered in fear. He looked so freaking pissed.
He rounded on me.
“What the bloody fucking hell was that last night?” He demanded angrily, his eyes turning into slits.
Was this really the boy I had kissed on my birthday? The gentle one that comforted me and cheered me up with his constant quidditch talk, cute Irish-English accent, and hearty laugh?
I opened my mouth, but no words could come out. He was waiting in tense silence, waiting for an explanation.
Finally, I choked out pathetically, “I don’t know.”
He scoffed. “What sort of rubbish is that?”
I felt the tears start to pool in my already stinging eyes. I didn’t even know that I had more tears to spill. “I-I don’t remember.”
“You don’t remember?” He asked, skeptically.
“No.” I said more forcefully, feeling another emotion fill up within me. It was anger. Anger that everyone never gave me a chance to explain myself. Did it ever occur to ANYONE that I didn’t remember shit? That I had no intention of hurting someone? “I don’t remember. I don’t remember shit, Derrick. I was fucking wasted. All I remember is drinking some nasty ass crap and then I blacked out.”
“So, you’re telling me that you don’t remember stripping, overturning bar tables, lap dancing with random blokes in nothing but your bra and knickers, then snogging two people…one of them happening to be a girl and the other a bloody Slytherin?” He demanded in a nasty tone.
This is pissing me off.
“Yes, I am telling you that I do not have any recollection of those events. That’s what I don’t remember means.” I spat at him, my stomach churning, my blood boiling, and my head pounding.
I couldn’t look at him straight.
After a minute, Derrick deflated slightly, his pissed as hell face turning into one of dejection. He shook his head and said, “You don’t remember. You don’t remember….of course. You were fucking pissed.”
Sometimes it takes me a while to remember that pissed is another term for drunk in British language.
His dejected tone seemed to ease my fiery blood. I exhaled and rubbed my temples, trying to ease my throbbing head.
“It hurt, Elaquay. Seeing you like that. You were completely bonkers. You had no regard for anything. You hurt more than just me last night.” He said, his tone still in that dejected state.
“I know.” I answered flatly. We both made eye contact and I forced myself not to look away. He looked so upset and repulsed at the same time.
“Look Els, I believe that you don’t remember anything.” He exhaled. His tone sounded heavy. “I was stupid for believing that you did that with intention. I should’ve known better…but…regardless, I can’t…we can’t….”
Here it comes. I knew it would. It’s inevitable.
He ran his hand through his hair nervously. “I just think that we need a rest for a while.”
Should I feel upset, angry, happy? What did I feel? I was numb, I guess. I don’t know.
“So, you’re breaking up with me?” I asked, my tone a bit more clipped than I intended.
He was silent for about twenty seconds, staring at his shoes and avoiding my eyes. “I don’t know. I guess for now. I still like you a lot, Elaquay, so I don’t think I’ve given up on you. We just need our space for the time being. Maybe when this all clears over…”
He trailed off.
What’s done is done. I guess I can call myself single.
I gave a sigh and whispered. “Thanks for listening to me, Derrick. It’s a first.”
He gave a half hearted nod. I took that as my cue to leave.
I felt strangely out of place in the dark halls of the medieval castle, walking in my baggy Oregon sweater and sweats. There have been a countless number of times where I have felt isolated, the lonely American girl with the different accent, the different clothes, the different lifestyle. But this time, I felt like an alien. I felt like everything here was telling me to go back to where I came from.
Would that be such a bad thing? I missed the fir trees and constant rain, the mild summers, the Duck football games (not soccer), the hippies...where everyone has the same outlook on life, the same accent, a place where it’s normal to wear a sweater and sweats in public…
Six years. It’s been six years since I’ve been home. Yet, I’ve never let it go. I still have an Oregonian way of thinking, the same exact accent, the same wardrobe…yet I’ve made my fit here in the Wizarding England and Scotland. I’ve found friends who accept me wholly for who I am.
But I’ve screwed up. Now it’s all gone. Yes, I was drunk and I don’t remember shit. Yes, I didn’t mean it.
But I still did it. And that’s the only thing that counts right now.
I can’t go back to the great hall right now. It wouldn’t be worth it. It wouldn’t change anything. I could sit down and eat…but is it really worth the time?
I took a left turn before I decided that I wanted to walk the grounds. Curfew for being in the castle starts once dinner ends, which means I have approximately forty minutes. As I pushed open the large door that leads outside, I felt a soft hand on my shoulder. I quickly spun around to see Albus, his green eyes shimmering with concern, his black hair ruffled and unkempt as always.
I gave a sigh, but felt a sense of comfort that he had decided to approach me. At least I had one Weasley-Potter for an acquaintance…a shadow of what I once had.
“Hey, Al.” I said, my voice sounding feeble and exhausted. He gave me a small tentative sad smile.
“Els.” He replied, slowly letting go of my shoulder.
I looked at my feet for a frozen second, feeling shame and guilt build up in me. Looking at Albus was kind of like looking at James, despite the darker shade of hair, the green eyes, and the glasses. It was painful, and it made me think of how much I probably hurt him last night. Yet, I needed comforting.
“Wanna go on a walk with me?” I asked softly, gesturing out toward the grounds, which looked extremely welcoming and breathtaking under the evening sky.
He smiled in response. We both walked out into the approaching night, the air pleasant and smelling of the fast coming autumn. We walked slowly over the long bridge that crossed from the courtyard to the long stretches of meadow, trees, cliffs, and lake. We didn’t say one word. Not one. Yet, it was a comfortable silence. It was nice just to have Albus here beside me, despite the fact that he witnessed what I had done, what I had said to his brother.
Once we started to head toward the lake, he finally broke the silence. “I was hoping you were alright. I was coming from the library when I saw you exit the great hall with Finnigan.”
His voice sounded concerned. I appreciated it.
“It’s fine. Derrick and I…well…we aren’t together anymore. At least not right now.” I answered, my voice expressionless. I felt Albus close behind me, his close presence making a strange sensation travel up my spine.
“Oh. I’m sorry.” He answered.
We walked for a few more minutes, seeing Hagrid’s hut in the distance, the windows alight and the chimney smoking. I was tempted to go down there and visit him, but I just couldn’t get my body to move in that direction. I don’t know why. The thought made the tears prickle at the corners of my eyes again. I don’t want to cry. I really don’t, but it’s like someone turned on a freaking hose and it won’t shut off. Dammit.
I bit my lip and felt pathetic. Nothing really extreme has happened yet. I’ve just gotten some name calling, a breakup, avoidances, and two nasty insulting confrontations that ended long friendships. I know that the worst hasn’t come because I haven’t seen James yet. I haven’t confronted Elisha yet, or Scorpius for that matter. Yet, I was still crying because I knew that it would come soon.
“Hey.” Albus’s soothing voice played gently in my ear and his warm arm snaked my shoulders gently as he held me close to his body. That’s when I broke. Again.
I buried my face in his shoulder, crying, while he rested his chin on my head. He used one hand to stroke my hair. The motion was achingly familiar. So familiar that it hurt. It made me break even more.
“I-I am s-such an idiot. I s-should’ve known b-better than to drink that m-much. Everyone know that I’m a-a horrible d-drunk.” I choked into his shoulder. I was surprised that he could even understand my words.
“It’s alright, Els.” He answered in a serene voice.
“N-No it’s not. E-Everyone hates me a-and i-it’s my fault. I have to l-learn to deal with it. I-I didn’t mean any of it. I swear, Albus. Whatever I said to J-James last night, I-I didn’t mean it. W-When I kissed Malfoy, I d-didn’t mean to hurt Rose or Lils….”
“I know you didn’t Els. So does everyone else. Rose knows that you would never do that to her on purpose. Lily as well. They’re just in shock and they’re hurt. They’re both very impulsive that way, but they’ll get over it. As for James….” He hesitated.
“…I think it’ll all turn out alright. He doesn’t take insults well and he can hold a grudge, but he can never hate you. I told you that before. Everything will all be okay. I promise.” He said in a reassuring tone.
His voice warmed my insides and made me give one last shaky sigh before my breathing turned back to normal. His arms were so pleasant, and the air was so calm.
And he was here, holding me, comforting me, telling me that it was going to be okay. Something about that sparked in my stomach, like someone had struck a match. My heart started to race and like a magnetic force, I pulled my face away from Albus’s shoulder and looked at him straight in the face.
His green eyes shimmered with gentleness and sincerity. It was a caring and affectionate look, yet it was laced with a strange mixture of the classic Weasley mischief. The look sent a strange explosion through my whole body.
I don’t know why it happened, or what the fuck happened…but I went on my tiptoes and kissed him on the lips.
It was a gentle, sweet, and tender kiss, but it lasted long. He responded to it, as if it were the most natural thing in the world. It was different from any kiss I’ve ever experienced. It wasn’t like Derrick’s kisses.
I tasted the burrow, the sweet scent of familiarity, of kindness, of sincerity, of oblivion, of innocence….I slowly snaked my arms around his neck, and felt it all rush through me. Nothing else mattered…nothing, nothing, just….
We immediately broke apart. He stood up straight and I lowered my heels so that they touched the ground again. Reality hit me.
Shit. What had I done? Why the hell did I just do it?
I had just kissed Albus Severus Potter.
Wow, three unlikely kisses in less than twenty four hours. At least I don’t remember two of them.
I turned my head toward the lake to see James Potter standing a mere six feet away from both Albus and I, and judging by the look of furious disbelief plastered on his face, he had just witnessed our unexpected intimate moment.
My insides crumbled. Well, goodbye sanity and hello centaurs.
James’ usually warm brown eyes were dark as they froze on me. His face was pale, and his fists were clenched. His lips were set in a frightening flat line.
Why do these things just have to happen to me?
I looked up at Albus, who was staring at his brother…wild shock and panic plastered on his face. His lips looked swollen, and I felt another pang of guilt hit my chest.
I dared myself to look back at James, who was still spitting imaginary fire. Finally, after another twenty seconds on panicked and angry silence, he spat, “Fine. I’m not going to even ask. I’ll just let you two get back to what you were doing…”
He made a motion to turn around.
“N-No….” I choked out before I could stop myself. I took a step forward, feeling like a lost child. My eyes burned with more unshed tears. I felt defeated, desperate, and plain pathetic. Oh…and guilty. “James…”
“What?” He spat at me with such venom that I recoiled.
I felt my mouth drop open. I was at a loss for words to say. I couldn’t think of anything to justify what he had just seen. He stared at me, waiting for me to say something. When I didn’t, he scoffed and turned back around.
“James…” Albus started, his voice a bit hoarse.
“Don’t even attempt to talk to me, Al.” He spat, as he kept walking away.
“James, please…if you would only let me explain myself…” I pleaded, almost ready to drop to my knees. I am so stupid. I am such a freaking idiot. Why, oh why did I have to kiss Albus? Why? I don’t even like him that way, and I know that he doesn’t like me that way either. We’re like fraternal twins. He’s the one source of non-drama that I can depend on. I just demolished that by kissing him. Now he’s sucked into it all. It didn’t help that I liked the kiss as well.
“Explain what, Elaquay?” James thundered, spinning around to face me. The pained look on his face broke my heart.
“There’s nothing to say. No alcohol to save your arse this time.” He spat at me with such contempt that I backed up, feeling as if someone physically stabbed me with a knife.
“James!” Growled Albus angrily, his emerald eyes flashing.
“How can you just go and snog her after what happened last night?” James reprimanded, his glowering eyes now trained on his brother.
“Grow up, James! This isn’t all about you. We all know you’re hurt but have you ever considered…” Albus retaliated, but he was cut off.
“It’s not just about me. She completely broke Rose and Lily, she undermined our family in general, shattered my girlfriend’s dignity, and fucking disrespected herself.”
“I didn’t mean any of it, James. I swear to Merlin that I don’t remember a thing!” I yelled, my voice cracking and my head pounding uncontrollably. Uh-oh…here comes the nausea….
“Doesn’t matter. It still happened, Elaquay.” His words resonated with a foreboding finality.
I was at loss for words.
He was right. It still happened, and it hurt.
James gave me one last look, his eyes glittering with pain. All of the anger was wiped away as he whispered in a strained tone, “Goodbye Elaquay.”
With that, he turned and continued walking off. Once he was out of sight, I let the tears fall. I felt Albus close behind me. The tension was overbearing and I just wanted him to leave. Kissing him was a mistake. It just made the matter ten times worse that it already was.
“Elaquay…” He said cautiously.
“Go away….just please.” I pleaded in a shaking voice.
That was enough for him. He placed a comforting hand on my shoulder before walking off, back towards the castle. I was all alone.
For real this time.
My new hiding spot right now was the astronomy tower. I didn’t give a flying shitface if I wasn’t supposed to be up here at this hour. It was the only place where I felt truly mighty. I could see everything. I didn’t feel insignificant and small. I didn’t feel like an ugly troll-whore.
My eyes stung and I knew that they were all red from the crying I’ve been doing. My cheeks were stained and sticky with tears. My hair was a tangled mess (nothing new there), and my sweater hung limply on my body. I looked like one of those hobos who live in the Eugene downtown street corners in Oregon. Except I was on top of a freaking astronomy tower, deep in magical Scotland….in a fucking castle. A castle full of people who either are laughing at me, talking shit about me, or refuse to acknowledge my existence.
But on the astronomy tower, looking at the moon, I felt a strange sense of peace. I felt above everyone else. Nothing mattered up here.
Why…oh WHY did I kiss Albus? Fucking stupid idiot, I was.
I groaned in frustration and tried to take my mind off of it, but I couldn’t. Seriously, what force decided to fuck with my brain and gave me the idea that kissing Al was a good idea?
It was the eyes. I always found his green eyes gorgeous, but there was something behind it this time. It was the mischievous familiarity…that source of comfort I thought I’d never get again. I saw it, so I decided to grasp it.
He was there for me. He cared for me despite everything else.
I saw that twinkle in his eye. The twinkle that all the Weasley-Potters have.
I am such a hopeless degenerate.
My thoughts were broken with a snide drawling voice behind me…a voice that I wished I wouldn’t hear for a long time.
I gritted my teeth and fingered my wand in my sweater pocket. I swear to all Merlin’s man bra….
“Malfoy.” I said through gritted teeth.
I watched as he plopped himself beside me, a small amount of space between our bodies. I got a good look at his face. His eyes were dark and bloodshot. There were dark circles beneath his eyes, his hair looked more messy than normal, and his skin was ghostly pale. In other words, he looked defeated.
I dared myself to look at his lips, and I cringed. I had kissed those lips last night. Lily had kissed those lips at my birthday. Rose had completely devoured those lips last school year…without her clothes. I shuddered. Nice Malfoy. Three gingers in the course of four months.
I stiffened at how close he was and was about to draw my wand to hex him.
“Don’t even bother hexing me, Smithson. It’s not worth it.” He said in a bitter and exhausted tone. His voice made me stop. He sounded so out of it.
After some silence, he finally spoke again…this time, he looked at me with his angry grey eyes and said with a demanding tone, “Look, whatever happened between the two of us last night….”
“Save it, Malfoy. I wish it hadn’t happened either.” I cut him off.
He shut his mouth and gave a slight nod. “I’m glad we’re on the same page.”
After a few more heartbeats of sullen silence, Malfoy reached into the pocket of his robe and withdrew a pack of muggle cigarettes. I watched with interest as he took one out, stuck the end in his mouth and then used the tip of his wand to light it.
He took a drag and then blew out, the smoke swirling around the air…the strong burning smell filling my nostrils. I cleared my throat.
“You smoke?” I asked, nonchalantly.
He shrugged in response and blew out another puff of smoke. “On occasion. Only when I feel like it. It has to be the muggle shit though. The wizard stuff that my dad smokes is rubbish.”
After a few more drags, he held the pack out to me. “Want one?”
Normally, I would’ve said no. I don’t have anything against people who smoke, but I just never found the appeal of it. But right now, the idea seemed to be absurdly swell. I grabbed one and stuck it in my mouth. I lit the end and took a drag. I coughed.
“So…” I started. “Have you talked to Lily?”
Malfoy grimaced. “Tried to. She put a bat bogey hex on me. It wasn’t necessarily pleasant.”
“Yeah well, she isn’t necessarily to fond of me either right now. She slapped me.” I responded, taking another drag.
“It’s better than a bat bogey hex.”
“I take it Potter isn’t too happy?” Malfoy asked, his tone nonchalant.
Maybe it was his apathetic tone that comforted me. “Nope. Not at all.”
Then, I spilled everything. From waking up, to Lily, then to Rose, to Derrick, to Albus, and then to the confrontation with James.
After about a minute of silence, he finally responded. “You kissed the other Potter?” He snorted and then continued, “That is an epic fail right there.”
“I know.” I answered with a sigh.
“I mean, the bloke obviously is bloody bollocks for you.” He shrugged indifferently as he said this, the smoke swirling around his blonde hair.
“I wish everyone would stop saying that. If there was any chance that he even remotely liked me before, I’ve gone and ruined it.” I stated, my insides churning unpleasantly.
Malfoy rolled his eyes and shook his head. “Whatever you want to believe, Smithson.”
“Malfoy…how do you feel about Lily?” I asked, blowing out a small huff of smoke. I watched as it dissolved in the air.
“Lils? She’s great. She’s one of the coolest people I have ever met.” He answered. His voice sounded very sincere. “She is independent that one, and quite mature for her age. I dunno…I like how she’s outspoken. She does things her way no matter what, even if she is called a slag. That’s something that I wish I do. She sort of encourages me if you know what I mean….she’s a great friend.”
I am fully satisfied with his answer. Maybe Scorpius Malfoy isn’t the heartless smarmy git we all thought he was.
“Okay, she’s a great friend. Would you date her?” I asked in a slightly patronizing voice.
He seemed to be pondering on the thought, the smoke twirling near his ambiguous grey eyes. “Y’know, I thought about it. She’s beautiful and independent. But…no. She’s an amazing girl and she is becoming my best mate. I’ve never had a best mate before. Plus, I really fancy…” He faltered, and stared off into space. I finished his sentence for him.
“Rose.” I clarified.
He gave a sigh and looked at me straight in the face, his grey eyes containing an intense fire. “I told her everything. Every damn thing, Smithson. Things that even Lils doesn’t know. She accepted me. That night at the lake was…..” His voice faltered, and he shook his head, at loss for words.
“She’s amazing. She’s loyal to her family and her friends. Even when I wanted to take her, she refused because she wanted to protect Lily. That’s something I need.”
I have never heard Malfoy speak so sincerely before. I was also surprised at how easy it was for him at all. He just needed someone who would listen is all.
“Well, when the time is right….I suggest that you try again. She really really likes you, y’know. She’s just stubborn.” I said.
“I’ll keep that in mind.” He gave me a crooked smile and I smiled back.
So we just sat for a while longer in a peaceful silence, smoking on the astronomy tower. Who knew that this would happen? Scorpius Malfoy and Elaquay Smithson, talking their troubles away, and sharing a strange mutual understanding.
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