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Chapter 14 : Jealousy
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“You like it?” Jake asked, and as Roxanne turned, there was a big smile on both their faces. “They’re essentially sparklers that fly around and, depending on what house you’re in, the reaction. Gryffindors get the sparks, Claws get little blue rockets, Puffs get yellow snowflakes and Slytherins get green sludge. I’ve sent millions of these things all over the school.”
Roxanne’s laugh was clear and full of joy as she dived on Jake, hugging him tightly as all her frustrations and worries about Slughorn melted away. He stumbled back a step, her vivacious reaction taking him aback as he hugged her.
“Wow what was that about?” he asked with a chuckle as she let go, looking a tad embarrassed, but feeling all the better for it.
“Nothing,” she replied with a relaxed sigh. “It’s just been a tough day and I needed something to cheer me up. And, as ever, lo and behold, here you are. Thanks Jakey.”
“As ever Roxy, you are most welcome.”
Roxanne smiled again and a warm feeling gushed over her and she found herself grinning. Jake laughed louder as more sparkles whizzed around the common room, occasionally showering the odd Gryffindor in sparks as they passed. Roxanne looked at her watch and cursed, muttering under her breath about how unfair Slughorn was.
“I’ve got detention now,” she groaned. “I hopefully won’t be more than a couple of hours and if you want to wait then feel free, but if you want your bed by the end I won’t blame you.”
“Don’t be stupid Rox,” Jake laughed. “Of course I’ll wait for you. I’ll just have some fun with the twins or Kelvin or someone.”
“Uh huh,” Roxanne smiled knowingly. “See you soon Jake.”
As she was scrubbing Slughorn’s cauldron and listening to him go on and on about the famous Harry Potter (who she knew was her own uncle, for crying out loud; she’d idolised him growing up, as had all the Potter/Weasley kids), her mind continued to drift to Jake and, as much as she tried to direct her mind elsewhere, he continuously cropped up in her thoughts, almost sneaking his way in so she was momentarily overwhelmed by his presence there and a small smile crept on her face that Slughorn was too busy going on about rubbish to notice. Roxanne eventually heard him say the words: “Okay, you can go now!” and she leapt at the chance, hurrying back up to Gryffindor Tower only to find the common room all but empty and Jake was fast asleep on the sofa. Roxanne smiled gently and sat beside him for a moment.
“You look cute when you’re sleeping,” she muttered. “Did I ever tell you that?”
Jake didn’t reply, he merely grunted and rolled over, his head buried in the cushions of the sofa as Roxanne chuckled. She levitated him and then guided him up the stairs and into his bed with her wand, earning a chuckle from a sleepy Lorcan. Jake grumbled in his sleep as she settled him down then she sighed and headed out the room, pausing for a moment to look back and admire him.
“Fuck,” she whispered. “I think I’m falling in love with him.”
For Rose, crying over a boy was something that as a rule, she didn’t do. It had never appealed to her, never been something that she’d considered to be either cool or necessary and it had also struck her how many girls descended into such stupidity. But, she realised, crying was something she was not above. She had never realised how annoyingly right Neville had been until he had announced he was done with her and now she felt like a mess. It had been only a couple of weeks and whenever she saw him she felt pangs run through her. Dom had been a solid rock for the first couple of days, but now was Rose was thoroughly able to stand on her own two feet, as much as she wanted nothing more than to spend the rest of her life tucked up safely in her bed where arseholes like Neville couldn’t hurt her anymore. When she got into her “hate Neville” moods, she reminded herself that it was her own fault, but this served no purpose other than to annoy her further. She felt it was better to hate Neville for her own mistakes than admit the mistakes were hers, as in the long run, it would help her to move on quicker, even if she did find herself becoming bitter. The only person she could find that was as miserable as she was was Lysander, but although she had little sympathy for him, she reminded herself that their situations were not too dissimilar.
However, as miserable as Lysander was, Lily was almost equally depressed, rarely leaving her room except for meals and lessons, with not even Kelly was having much success in cheering her up. It was in desperation that Kelly and Hugo concocted a scheme to cheer up Lily and it was a scheme that seemed to work, at least in principle. They invited her onto a double date with Neville and themselves, knowing that they themselves needed a bit of work after Hugo’s outburst at Kelly. They had been treading on thin ice ever since.
The final Hogsmeade trip of the year was on the weekend of December before they broke up for Christmas. Lily and Hugo were amongst the hordes of the Potter/Weasley clan that were planning to descend on the Burrow for Christmas, but Kelly was planning on staying at Hogwarts for Christmas with her dad, so the pair could spend some quality time together. Kelly hoped it didn’t involve plants; she hadn’t had the heart to tell him she wasn’t taking Herbology at NEWT level.
What had started out as a double date quickly broke off, as the tension between Hugo and Kelly overrode the fun they were supposed to be having and the two went off to have a quiet drink and talk over their problems. That left Lily and Neville on their own. The two exchanged a look as the two wandered off awkwardly and Lily smiled properly for the first time in too long. Neville took her arm in an almost teasing manner and the two strolled arm in arm down the main Hogsmeade Street, both of them relaxed as they laughed and joked. For Lily, it was a welcome break from the tough emotional situation with Lysander. Neville also seemed to enjoy her presence and by the time the two headed into Honeydukes, Lily was enjoying herself as Neville bought them both some sweets and handed her a handful, which she savoured, the taste dancing on her tongue. She then suggested they headed outside. She exchanged a look with Neville upon seeing the snow that was now heavily falling. They both wanted to go to the Three Broomsticks, but going there would almost certainly result in them bumping into Hugo and Kelly and neither of them fancied that at the moment. Lily was about to suggest they went to the Hog’s Head when her eyes bulged and next to her, Neville’s did similar. Rose and Lysander were walking up the street, hand in hand.
Rose was never normally a jealous person. But the truth was, this whole Neville thing was bringing out more than one side to her that she wasn’t really a fan of. Whether it was jealous, angry Rose, or weepy, desperate Rose, she was turning more into the sort of girl she’d spent six years trying not to be. Dom was clearly worried about her; she’d offered to ditch Lorcan for Hogsmeade to look after Rose, but Rose had turned her down. Hugo had mentioned in a throwaway comment that Lily and Neville were going to Hogsmeade as part of a double date with Hugo and his girlfriend and Rose had felt her blood boil.
“You’re jealous of your 15 year old cousin!” she told herself. “This is fucking ridiculous.”
But ridiculous or not, that hadn’t stopped her from hunting down Lysander and inviting him to Hogsmeade. Rose had made her hair as curly as possible, worn more makeup than normal and dressed up as much as she could in the freezing cold. The light snow did little to affect her appearance, courtesy of the spells she had put on herself and as she strolled with Lysander, she naturally kept close to him, his body warmth making her comfortable in his presence, if nothing else. On more than one occasion it occurred to her that Lysander had already cheated on Lily with one of her cousins, was this not rubbing salt in the wound? But then she had reminded herself that Lysander was evidently doing this for the same reason she was; in order to make Lily jealous. He didn’t know why she was doing it of course, but he wasn’t going to turn down the opportunity once he heard about Lily and Neville.
When they reached Hogsmeade, Rose moved even closer to Lysander, making them a seemingly picture perfect couple. In reality, she felt nothing for him, even less when she considered what he’d done. As much as she’d made a mistake, she’d not made any commitments or even solidified her feelings for Neville whilst Lysander had made it perfectly clear how he felt about Lily to her, or at least she thought he had. She spotted Lily and Neville almost the moment they entered Hogsmeade, they were just leaving Honeydukes as Rose approached. She felt worse by the second as they approached, the genuine happiness and laughter on both their faces nothing compared to her faux-attempt at happiness with Lysander.
“This was a bad idea,” she muttered, but Lysander wasn’t listening, his eyes fixed on Lily. Lily must’ve spotted them because she went pale white and tried hard to focus on Neville, who acted in a similar fashion, which sent a rush of blood through Rose. They moved closer, with the other pair stood transfixed to the spot. Then, without warning, Lily grabbed Neville and snogged him, their faces lost to Rose as they combined and she could feel Lysander shudder beside her. Rose looked at Lysander. Lysander looked at Rose. Rose thought hard. Surely, if she had any sort of moral compass, any thought for what she was doing, any care for her cousin and Neville, she wouldn’t kiss Lysander purely out of spite and jealousy? Rose knew that kissing Lysander was something she definitely should not do. And, sure enough, she planted her lips upon his, all her anger and fire relinquished, leaving only a dull pain as he responded. Neither of them enjoyed it. But they did it.
Lily wasn’t sure what had prompted her to do it. But upon seeing Lysander with another one of her cousins, she’d snapped. Her anger and ferocity had led her to grab the closest boy and make a mess of his face, her lipstick smearing him as they locked lips. After a few seconds, she broke the kiss, glancing across to feel a stabbing pain in her heart as Rose kissed Lysander. What had she expected? She was playing with fire. Beside her, Neville seemed to react rather well to what had just happened.
“I take it that was to make Lysander jealous?” he gasped. She nodded. “Fair enough then, let’s give him something to be jealous of.”
Lily was about to protest, but found herself thinking “fuck it” as Neville kissed her back, his breath hot on her skin as he put his hands around her waist, swinging her round so he had her pinned against the wall. He was a brilliant kisser, his hands weaving around her as she struggled to keep up. She shot the occasional glance at Rose and Lysander and sure enough they were trying their hardest to keep up. As much as Lily was enjoying the kiss, it felt empty and she knew it. So did Neville, who kept his eyes focused firmly on her.
“Don’t look at them,” he whispered. “If they spot you it’ll completely ruin what you’re trying to do.”
“You’ve done this before,” Lily said, placing her arms around his neck and seductively moving her mouth closer to his.
“Maybe,” Neville replied coyly, before their lips connected again and Lily gasped as his hands slid up and down her body, being careful where they remained. For all the good work Neville was doing, it was clear he was holding back and Lily knew that if he wanted to, he could blow any girl’s socks off. He allowed her a glance as Lysander and Rose had broken apart, looking guilty and Neville seemed to wince as Lily turned around. Dom and Lorcan were behind them and the thunderous look on Dom’s face made Lily want to flinch herself. Rose opened her mouth to say something, but Dom silenced her with a glare and grabbed Rose’s ear, dragging her away as Rose yelped and protested. Lorcan, who clearly was as confused as to Dom’s anger as Lily was, shot his brother a look that was both sympathetic and suspicious before heading after his girlfriend. Lysander looked alone for a moment then looked at Lily. Their eyes met and Lily, feeling bad, tried a sad smile that ended up as more of a grimace. Lysander looked almost relieved when he saw some of his friends leave the Three Broomsticks and he joined them quickly, leaving Neville and Lily panting up against the wall.
“That was fun,” Lily smiled. “Care to explain why you did that?”
“You mean other than to help you out?” Neville laughed. “You look hot today Lily, that I won’t deny and you’re a good kisser. So yes, I also enjoyed it. But my heart lies elsewhere and you’re not the only person trying to move on. So let me know if you want to make Lysander jealous again, it was good to keep my skills up.”
“I will,” Lily chuckled. “I’ve had a good day but as good as your kissing was I want to make it clear that it meant nothing. But don’t tell Kelly and Hugo about this, you know what they’re like.”
“I do indeed,” Neville chuckled. “We can’t put off the inevitable forever; we’d better go and see them.”
Lily nodded and, with a moment’s pause, followed Neville into the Three Broomsticks.
Dom’s anger was well-placed and Rose knew it, as all her own doubts and irritations at the way she had been going were evident on her best friend’s face as Dom dragged Rose into the nearest girl’s bathroom, into a cubicle and placed a silencing spell on it. She seemed to take a moment to calm herself, as Rose sat down, looking and feeling very guilty.
“First off, before I blow my top, you look lovely,” Dom said, the strain in her voice evident. “Now, what the FUCK were you thinking? Not only did you think that going out of your way to make a slut of yourself in public in order to make Neville jealous, as I assume that’s the reasoning behind that, but you also thought the perfect guy to do it with was fucking Lysander? Rose, that’s cold. That’s out of order. Lily might be seeing the guy you like but she’s done nothing wrong. She doesn’t know about you and Neville and she’s already seen Lysander cheat on her with one of her cousins.”
“Dom…I…” Rose broke down again and started to sob, hatred for herself overtaking everything else as Dom was torn between her own anger and sympathy.
“Rosie,” she whispered. “You’re my best friend. I’m not going to let you destroy yourself, whatever you think. I know you’re hurt and jealous and angry at Neville, but you’re stronger than that. And if he’s not going to give you a chance then he doesn’t deserve you. But what you did today was not fair Rose. You know Lily will forgive you, but you owe her an apology if not an explanation.”
“I know,” Rose whispered. “I’m so ashamed with myself Dom. It seems like overnight I’ve turned into one of those slutty, desperate girls who are so hung up on a guy that they abandon all their morals. I feel like shit and look what I’ve become Dom. Look at me.”
“Come here babe,” Dom hugged her tightly as Rose sobbed again, her mascara running fiercely, staining her face the colour of her hair. Dom siphoned it off with her wand and pushed Rose’s fringe off her face. “You’re going to be alright. You just need to talk to Lily, sort things out. As for Neville, I would talk to him, but I think it’s something that you two need to work out on your own.”
“I really think I like him, no matter how pitiful that is,” Rose laughed despite herself. “Although I imagine I can’t really get much more pitiful at this moment in time. I’m so glad that you’re my best friend; otherwise I don’t know how I’d be able to get through it. I’ll talk to Lily when I get the chance, now I just want to sit here and feel sorry for myself.”
“I’ll stay with you,” Dom smiled. “I’m sure that Lorcan won’t mind waiting for me for a while, he knows how important you are, especially at a time like this.”
“You’re lucky you’ve got him,” Rose replied. “You shouldn’t take him for granted. Go. I’ll be alright.”
“Bull,” Dom snorted. “I’m staying. You might be a fucking idiot Rose, and you may have fucked up again, but you’re my best friend and I’m not leaving you.”
“Thanks Dom,” Rose sniffled and put her head on Dom’s shoulder, letting the tears come naturally to her as she thought about Lily and Neville and Lysander and of how much of a love-struck fool she had become.
A/N: Things are kicking off eh? And you this is bad, the next chapter is going to step things up a gear!! So keep viewing, it's one of my favourites from any of my stories. Anyway, I'd also hope some of you guys could read The Million Dollar Question by my amazing BETA reader ptl4ever419, it's an excellent story and I owe her a lot. So leave a review, pretty please? :) HP
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