Chapter 27 : Sides
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“Where have you been?” Leighton asked the moment she sat down across from me at breakfast the next morning.
“What do you mean?” I asked, unsure of what she meant.
“I haven’t seen you since dinner last night,” she explained as she began to pile food onto her plate. “You disappeared the moment we returned to the common room.”
“Oh, that,” I stated. “I had to get to work on my business.”
“What business?” she asked indignantly, not comprehending.
“My dress business,” I replied, unaffected.
“What dress business?” she continued. “You’re still in school, Sirrah. Why don’t you focus on your future career after you graduate, like everybody else?”
“Because it is imperative that I start now,” I answered, condescendingly.
“Why?” she asked, still clueless.
“The fashion world never sleeps, Leighton,” I informed her. “There is a key prospect for business coming up very soon and I need to be prepared.”
“What key prospect?” she questioned, curious.
“I can’t tell you,” I replied, looking down at the table. “But it won’t be long before it’s announced.”
She seemed to ponder this but soon gave up and returned to her food.
“Oh, and before I forget,” she suddenly spoke, causing me to look up once more. “He knows.”
I stared at her in confusion as I slowly munched on a piece of toast. “Who knows?” I asked after swallowing my food.
“James knows,” she continued, her tone implied indifference but her expression did not. “That Kenny’s gay.”
“Ah,” I spoke, quickly understanding. Though, while it was unfortunate, I would not act as if the news had ruined my plans. “And how does he feel about that?” I asked, reverting to the lie I told yesterday about how I was merely curious as to whether or not James was okay with homosexuality. “Does he have any feelings against it?”
Leighton looked at me blankly, holding her cup of orange juice , as if she was attempting to come up with a suitable answer. I bet she didn’t expect me to continue with the ruse; she had probably forgotten about it completely.
“He didn’t seem opposed to it,” she finally stated, eyeing me skeptically.
I nodded, “Good.”
“Sirrah, what is this really about?” Leighton questioned boldly.
“What is what about?” I asked, playing the innocent card.
“Why does it matter whether or not Kenny’s gay?” she demanded. “What is it you plan to do?”
“Plan to do?” I asked, laughing lightly as if she were being ridiculous. “I don’t plan to do anything, Leighton. I simply wanted to know how James would react to one of my best friends. Even in these new times, homosexuality is still very much frowned upon.”
She stared me down, but I would not falter. I simply eyed her right back, practically challenging her to call me out on my lie.
A moment later, she finally gave in and looked away.
Now that she was friends with the enemy, and clearly on his side more than she was mine, there was no way I was going to share my plan of destruction with her. The second she got the chance, she would immediately be running off to James to tell him, and I certainly couldn’t have that.
And now that James knew about Kenny, Talon was the only option I had left.
I knew that if I were to ask him out though, it would cause suspicion. Tybalt would most certainly catch on to that, considering he already knows I’m looking for a fake boyfriend. But if I could get Talon to ask me out—you know, build up his confidence a little bit, make him think I was interested—then it wouldn’t seem suspicious at all for me to say yes to one little date to Hogsmeade.
Now, I just had to figure out how to go about doing that.
Choosing to put aside my own problems for the moment, I decided to spend my free period by taking up residency in the library.
While I was neither the brightest nor the dullest crayon in the box, the library was not a place anyone would ever expect to find me. Yes, I checked out books when necessary, but I certainly was not prone to lingering about by choosing to do my studying there.
I preferred to work in my dorm, or the common room, or anywhere really, as long as it wasn’t the library.
But I did have to give the library credit on its copious amount of hiding places.
There were so many rows and rows of shelves! If chased, it would be easy to lose your adversary. If playing a game of hide ‘n’ seek, it would be so easy to never be found. I swear.
And not only were there so many shelves, but there was also quite the plethora of little alcoves and nooks—built into the walls and covered with thick curtains—where you could conceal yourself away from the world, which sometimes was a very tempting thing to do.
And I wasn’t the only one hiding away in the library at Hogwarts.
No. There were two others who were also hiding away, but they were doing so together, as they often now liked to do.
Care to take a guess as to who those two people might be?
Well, I’ll tell you.
They are my brother, Scorpius Malfoy, and his object of desire, Rose Weasley.
Scandalous, I know.
I’m sure that no one ever saw that coming.
But alas, it is true.
They were sitting together in one of those nooks I was telling you about, thinking they were all alone on the far side of the library. Unbeknownst to them, I was hiding behind a nearby bookshelf.
Rose was sitting with a book in her lap, and Scorpius was watching her read like a lovesick puppy, patiently waiting for her attention to be focused on him.
“Did you know when a unicorn is born it is the color of pure gold?” Rose asked, her face bright with enthusiasm. “They don’t turn silver until they are two years old and they don’t start growing their horn until they are about four.”
“I—” Scorpius smiled when she turned to him, but he looked nervous, almost unsure of himself and of how to respond. Scorpius didn’t do unsure. I’ve known him my whole life and not once has he ever been the least bit insecure about anything. He’s confident, cocky, and sometimes a completely arrogant arse. That’s who he is. The Scorpius before me was almost unrecognizable as he tried to find something to say. “I did not know that,” he finally spoke as he slowly regained some semblance of composure. “You know I never took Care of Magical Creatures.”
“Oh, right,” Rose said, shaking her head as if she were mentally reprimanding herself. Of course, she should have known that. When Scorpius reached his third year, he took on Ancient Runes, Arithmancy, and Muggle Studies. He’d thought Care of Magical Creatures was as pointless as Divination. “How silly of me,” Rose added, blushing slightly.
“It was an honest mistake,” Scorpius countered, sounding obligingly coy.
“I wish you had taken it though,” she then added, boldly. “I’m sure you would have loved it.”
Scorpius looked pained. “I doubt that,” he spoke. “I’ve never really been a fan of magical creatures.”
“Why not?” Rose asked, looking genuinely curious.
He shrugged, “They just never interested me.”
Liar, I thought. Scorpius didn’t take Care of Magical Creatures for one reason and one reason alone: Father said the course was a waste of time and that he should focus on more important things. He took Arithmancy because Father said it was necessary for business. He took Ancient Runes because Father said puzzle-solving was a good skill to have. He took Muggle Studies because Father knew that things had changed since the Second Wizarding War and us purebloods needed to accept the fact that the Wizarding World was becoming more and more friendly toward muggles and their technology.
“I’m sure you’d change your mind, if you’d just give it chance,” Rose stated, smiling at him.
He froze under her smile, mouth gaping open and everything. He had no idea how to respond to that.
“Scorpius?” Rose asked, her voice filled with concern as she took notice of his sudden panicky expression. “Are you alright?”
“I’m fine,” Scorpius grinned a second too late. “I’m sure you’re right, Rose. Magical creatures probably aren’t so bad once you open up to them.”
Uh huh. That’s why our father is terrified of hippogriffs. Because magical creatures aren’t so bad once you open up to them. Or more appropriately, once you learn to follow their rules.
Rose’s smile grew even wider though at his answer, and he melted like a chocolate frog left out in the sun for too long.
Merlin, what was wrong with him? It was sickening to watch.
I think I preferred it when they were always fighting. At least then, I knew who my brother was. Now, I don’t think I’d recognize him if I had to point him out in a prison line-up.
They say everyone has two sides, but it was like he was two completely different people!
When he was in public with his fellow Slytherins, he was conceited, bossy, prudish; an ice prince. His studies were more important than anything, and quidditch was second in line. He wasn’t the best friend, although that didn’t stop Tybalt and Talon from continuously flocking to him. And he certainly wasn’t the best brother. While protecting our family’s name and reputation was always imperative to him, protecting me was not. If I were ever to do anything unseemly, he’d out me in a heartbeat to our parents or our teachers. I was not on his list of people who mattered.
But when he was with Rose, it was like everything around them had vanished. He became an actual person capable of actual feelings. What was even stranger was that he was capable of being nervous and afraid. Yes, he was afraid of her; afraid that she’d turn him away.
It was the strangest thing to witness someone you’d known your whole life suddenly acting like a completely different person without any explanation for it.
“I think unicorns are one of the most beautiful creatures on earth,” Rose commented with a twinge of endearment as she turned the page.
“Not as beautiful as you,” Scorpius replied without batting an eyelash.
It almost seemed like he had returned to normal for just a moment. I could totally see him pulling that exact same line on some bint he was just looking to snog in a broom closet.
Rose looked up, clearly surprised at his audacity, and blushed the deep red color of her namesake.
She obviously wasn’t used to such attention.
And then, to my utter disgust, Scorpius slowly began to lean toward her. To lean into her. Holy hell! He was going to kiss her!
I watched in horror as he closed his eyes and began to pucker up his lips, but then Rose caught on to what was about to happen and quickly pulled away, standing up abruptly and holding her book tightly to her chest.
“We should really go, don’t you think?” she asked, suddenly anxious to leave the privacy of their alcove. “It’s almost time for Arithmancy. We don’t want to be late.”
Scorpius had quickly gained composure, but before he did so, I saw the look of disappointment on his face. He had not anticipated that she would pull away from him, Scorpius Hyperion Malfoy; boy extraordinaire, captain of the Slytherin Quidditch Team, shoe-in for Head Boy, and heir to Malfoy Incorporations.
“Yes,” he stated a moment later as he gathered his bag and stood up as well. “We certainly wouldn’t want to do that.”
“Right,” Rose nodded and then led the way out.
I smirked at the sight of my brother who was very clearly annoyed that his plan had backfired in his face.
Apparently Rose Weasley was playing hard to get.
And she wouldn’t be easily won.
I had to give the redhead credit; she wasn’t going to be another hypothetical trophy on Scorpius’ hypothetical shelf of girls he had conquered. She was going to give him a run for his money.
On my way to dinner later that day, a fabulous idea suddenly hit me as I spotted Kenny a short ways ahead of me.
“Kenny!” I called, walking quickly in order to catch up with my best friend.
Kenny turned around and stopped the moment he saw me, smiling. “Hey Sirrah, what’s up?” he asked as I reached him.
I looked around to make sure no one was near enough to overhear our conversation. When all I spotted were a pair of second year Hufflepuffs far enough behind us not to be able to eavesdrop, I turned back to my friend. “I need your help,” I spoke urgently.
“Help with what?” Kenny questioned, looking curious.
“First I need you to promise me that you won’t tell anyone I asked you this, especially Leighton,” I stated furtively. I certainly couldn’t go blabbing about my plan to him if I couldn’t be positive he was on my side about this.
“Does this have something to do with Potter?” he asked suspiciously.
“Why would you think that?” I asked as if Potter was the last thing on mind.
“Because I know Leighton’s befriended him, and if I can’t tell Leighton about whatever it is that you need help with then clearly it has something to do with him, or else you wouldn’t be hiding it from her.”
“You’d be surprised about some of the things I’m hiding from Leighton,” I retorted, mainly thinking about Tybalt.
“Just answer the question,” Kenny stated, clearly not impressed.
“It might,” I admitted, surreptitiously. “But I can’t tell you anything until you promise you won’t tell Leighton.”
He sighed, “Fine, I promise I won’t tell Leighton.”
“You swear?” I asked. “I can’t tell you anything if I’m not one hundred percent sure you mean it.”
“I swear,” Kenny replied. “If you don’t like Potter, then I don’t like Potter.”
I stared at him intensely, waiting to see if he would crack, but he didn’t. He stood tall and kept his serious expression steady.
Finally, I nodded in approval.
“Good,” I said, continuing to walk again. He followed. “I don’t know why it couldn’t be the same way with Leighton, but, alas, she’s gone over to dark side.”
“Right,” Kenny spoke slowly, looking slightly perturbed or possibly just mystified. “So, what is it you need my help with?”
“I need Talon to ask me out,” I stated, bluntly.
“What?” he asked, stopping immediately. Clearly, my frankness was too much of a shock for him. Maybe I should have eased him into it… Nah. He knows perfectly well that’s not my style.
“You heard me,” I said brusquely.
“Yes, but I haven’t quite grasped it yet,” Kenny replied, his face contorted in confusion. “You’ve never been interested in Talon.”
“I know,” I stated. “And I’m still not interested, but he’s the only person I can use.”
“Use for what?” Kenny asked, curious.
“I’m not sure if I should say,” I started, thoughtfully. “In case Leighton ever interrogates you, it might be best if you know as little as possible.”
“Why would Leighton interrogate me?” he questioned, looking even more befuddled.
“You never know,” I stated mysteriously. “After her, you’re the first person I’d come to for help, and she is fully aware of that. Not to mention, she’s already suspicious of my plan. She knows something’s up, and it’s bugging the hell out of her that I won’t say due to her newfound friendship with the enemy.”
I looked around again to make sure the coast was still clear of eavesdroppers before pulling him into a nearby alcove.
“The basic gist of it is that I’ve agreed to meet James Potter at Hogsmeade, but I don’t actually intend to meet him. Instead, I intend to walk by the place I’ve agreed to meet him on the arm of someone else—that someone else being Talon—hence, pissing Potter off to the max. He’ll come out shouting and be all mad and I will finally make him see, once and for all, that I will never have feelings for him.”
Kenny stared at me for at least a minute before finally speaking, “So, what do you want me to do?”
I mentally sighed in relief. That was exactly the kind of response I was looking for.
“Like I said, I need Talon to ask me out. I’d ask him out, but that would draw suspicion. This needs to look like it was all his idea. Now, I already intend to play the part and act all interested in him when he’s around, but, just in case, I need someone to give him a nudge in the right direction. That’s where you come in. I need you to suggest to Talon that he ask me to go to Hogsmeade with him.”
Kenny nodded, seeming to understand. Then he asked, “Wouldn’t it just be easier to have me pretend to be your date though, instead of using Talon? I mean, Talon’s already head over heels for you even though you’ve done a pretty good job of not leading him on. Giving him hope by agreeing to go out with him just to get back at Potter, and then shattering it later when you don’t need him anymore—it’s cruel, S.”
“Trust me, if I could have used you, I would have,” I stated matter-of-factly. “But I made the mistake of asking Leighton if Potter knew you were gay, and so, thanks to her, he now knows. Besides, I don’t intend to shatter Talon’s heart, I have a plan.”
“And what’s that?” Kenny questioned, crossing his arms.
“I’m going to make it seem like it was his idea,” I replied smartly. “It shouldn’t be too hard,” I added with a small shrug. “He’s not that bright.”
“Uh huh,” Kenny stated, clearly not convinced.
“Will you do it or not?” I asked, changing the subject.
He appeared to be thinking about it, and then he finally nodded. “I’ll do it.”
“Good,” I nodded, smiling.
At least I had one person on my side.
“Come now,” I then stated, leaving the alcove. “Dinner’s already started and we’re losing valuable time.”
“So, I take it we’ll be sitting with the boys,” Kenny commented, not missing a beat as he caught up with me.
“You catch on quickly,” I noted with a smirk. “I’m glad you’re on my side.”
Author's Note: Hey, guys! I know, it's been like three whole months since I last updated. I struggled a lot with this chapter, fell into a non-writing funk, and it sucked. There is some good news though, I managed to get a job, even though it's seasonal and part-time and by that I mean I can count the days I've worked there on one hand. It sucks, but it's something. I'm hoping they keep me on though once they get rid of all the other seasonal people they hired, so wish me luck!
And also, while I wasn't writing Sirrah Malfoy chapters, I did go back and edit all the newer half of chapters like I said I would, so if you were to ever go back and reread them you might find some new things there.
I also wrote two one-shots for three challenges while I wasn't writing Sirrah Malfoy, and you can find them on my author page if you ever want to go and check them out. One is titled Not for Always and is sad and emotional, and the other is called 'Bring a Muggle to School' Day and is happy and upbeat and I've even been told it's funny, so feel free to go read and review those while you are waiting for me to post the next chapter of Sirrah. I honestly cannot say when that will be considering I have at least two one-shots I want to write by the Christmas time (one is for a challenge and one is a Secret Santa gift), so look out for those, too.
Anyway, I really hoped you liked the chapter. Please leave a review before you go. And happy holidays!
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