Chapter 26 : After Everything
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I opened my eyes. A sigh escaped my throat.
Tendrils of steams nipped at the people around me, partly obscuring their faces with mist. All around cries of greetings, sniffles of farewells and the chattering of pets could be heard. A great scarlet steam engine stood waiting on it's tracks like a runner before the start of a race.
It was time to go back.
I felt something knock against my shoulder, and I turned, looking blankly at the Ravenclaw who had come through the wall after me. They mumbled something about moving, but I took no notice, instead turning my eyes back to the chaotic scene before me.
My feet dragged forward, subconsciously following a mane of bushy brown hair as it made it's way through the crowd. It stopped ten feet from the train, hugging a man with greying black hair.
I stopped, near enough to be with them, but still far away, my thumbs poking through the holes of the green woollen jumper I wore. My mind started to drift off again before I was brought back by a sharp elbow to the ribs.
“Rose.” Ryan hissed under her breath. I looked at her blankly, and she glanced from me to my mother and back again.
Suppressing a sigh, I turned towards her. “Sorry, what?”
“The train's leaving soon.” She said, her voice softer than I'd heard in days, and she opened her arms, pulling me into her. I breathed in her warm scent, the smell of comfort. “No matter what, Rose Petal,” she whispered in my ear, “I am proud of you and love you. And so does, your father, though sometimes he doesn't show it.” She took a deep breath. “I'm sorry that I took your father's side. If... If he makes you happy, then that's all that matters.”
I smiled a little as I pulled back. “It doesn't matter now, Mum, but I love you too.”
Her eyes were a little misty for a moment but the Mum-mode took over. “You have everything? All your books? Make sure you study, Rose. And do be careful in Quidditch, and for Merlin's sake, try to stay out of trouble.”
My lips twitched, and I stifled a laugh. “Yes, Mum,”
“It's not like we did, 'Mione.” My Dad rolled his eyes, before they fell on me. “Well, this is it.”
The grin fell off my face. “Right. Bye, Dad.”
He stared at me for another moment, before pulling me gruffly into the shortest hug ever. “Bye, Rose. Love you.”
I cleared my throat, awkwardly pulling away and stumbling slightly. “Love you too.”
It was awkward to say the least. While my Mum and I had barely spoken the final days of the holiday, my Dad and I had fought most of it, barely being able to stay in the same room for more than five minutes. But at least my Mum had enough sense to convince my father not to send my to Beauxbatons.
I quickly kissed Aunt Ginny on the cheek and gave Uncle Harry a fleeting hug. “Bye, guys. Bug James and Ted until they write me, please.”
They both smiled, and nodded, waving me off. They had been acting like most of the other relatives, a little awkward but mostly just avoiding the subject of me and Scorpius. But out of all of the many Wotters, they were the best about it, after all their son was best friends with him. They really just didn't know what to say to me.
I sighed once again as I boarded the train, waving out the window to my family as the train lurched forward. Soon they were out of sight.
I turned and trailed after Ryan, who was making her way down the hall, glancing into compartments as she passed them.
She paused in front of one, glancing back at me. “Um...”
I peered into the compartment; Albus and Scorpius looked back out at me, Al looking uncertain, Scorpius blank and emotionless.
“We don't have to go in there.” Ryan whispered, her hands shoved into her pockets.
“No. You don't, but I do.” I sighed as I slid open the heavy door.
Al stood up awkwardly, scampering out to follow Ryan down the hall.
“Hi.” I shifted uncomfortably, playing with the holes in my sleeves again.
He just looked at me, grey eyes boring into mine.
“So I thought we could talk...” I started, sitting down on the edge of the wide seat.
He sighed and ran a hand through his hair. “About?”
I looked at him blankly for a second. “What happened on New Year's.”
“Are you referring to the fact that you kissed another guy?” He asked, mocking my cautious tone.
Anger started to bubble beneath the numbness that had held me for days. “No, I am referring to you punching Grayson.”
His eyes hardened, but he said nothing, just glared at me defiantly.
“Aren't you even going to apologize?” I exclaimed, half way between anger and incredulous.
He rubbed his hand against his face, looking at me exhaustedly. “And what do I need to apologize for? I hit the bloke who was snogging my girlfriend, I fail to see what problem is.”
My mouth fell open, and I gaped at him. “You broke his nose! Quit being an arrogant prick and get over yourself!”
He scoffed, his grey eyes rolling. “I need to get over myself?! Talk about hypocritical, Weasley!”
“What the fuck are you talking about, Malfoy?” I hissed, almost spitting with rage.
“You think I need to get over myself? What about you! You think that you're Goddamn perfect! You're Rose Weasley, so you can do no wrong!” He was yelling now, anger and hurt fuelling him. “You think I've hurt you, Rose, well, think about what you've done to me! You're not some perfect little angel!”
“I never said I was!” I protested, mind reeling. What was he talking about? “But I haven't done anything!”
“Y-You haven't done anything?!” He repeated, looking like he almost wanted to laugh. “Are you serious, Rose?”
“Fine!” I shrieked, crossing my arms over my chest. “Just how have I hurt you?”
“It killed me when you walked away from me after I told you about Dominique. It killed me to when you said you didn't love me that detention! It killed me to see you glare at me like you wanted nothing more than to see me dead! Every insult, every glare, every fight, it killed me! And to see you kissing Grayson, it destroyed me.” His voice broke, and his head buried itself in his hands.
The pain in his voice shocked me into silence, I stared at him open mouthed, in pure shock in the realization that while he had hurt me countless times, I had hurt him just as bad. I never knew.
“So Rose,” he said finally, “I'm done. I'm done apologizing and I'm done with you. I hurt you and I'm sorry, but I know you. And you can't swallow your pride long enough to apologize to me.” He stood, looked down at me for one second with such hate in his gaze I'm surprised I didn't burst into flames, and then walked to the door.
“But-” I spluttered as he slide the door open, his body rigid. “but after everything... You just- You can't just- Scorpius.” I stood up and tried to grab his hand.
He flinched away, as if I'd burned him. “No, Rose, I'm done. I love you but,” his breath whoosed out, the smell of him washing over me, “but sometimes love isn't enough.”
The door thudded shut and I felt a shuddering breath escape my chest.
I felt shock wash over me, and I fell back into the seat. What had just happened? After everything, everything all the hate, the thing with Dom, all the fights, the crash, after everything, he just gave up? How could he? How could he?!
My stomach dropped as I thought this. How could he? How could I? What had I done?
My head banged against the back wall, and tears spilled down my cheeks as I realized just how big of a mess this all was.
“Come on, Rose.” Ryan nudged me out of the carriage, while Dom tugged on my hand.
I didn't say anything, just stood up, not bothering to fix my wrinkled robes. My shoes crunched down on the snow, and I stuffed my hands deep into my robe pockets.
I walked slowly into Hogwarts, Ryan and Dominique trailing silently beside me.
The monsterous doors of the Great Hall opened with a creak. Heads whipped around as soon I stepped in, and whispers exploded off the walls. My eyes darted around, everyone was staring at me, whispering behind their hands.
“Ryan?” I hissed out of the side of my mouth. “Why is everyone staring at me?”
She took a deep breath, and exhaled, the breath escaping with a huge sigh. “Come on.” And she dragged me to the Gryffindor table, her hand tangled in the sleeve of my robe.
“Tell me.” I growled as soon as my butt touched the wood of the bench. “Now.”
“No. I will tell you after the feast.” She said, avoiding my glaring eyes.
“You will tell me now, Ry-” My voice becoming increasingly more threatening as every eye in the hall continued to burn holes in the back of my head.
“No, Rose, I will tell you later. I'm not having you give them another reason to stare by flipping out in the middle of the welcome back speech.”
Anger fought for control, but common sense shoved it back.
“Fine.” My voice hissing like a snake.
My fingers drummed the table as McGonagall droned on, welcoming everyone back with the same speech she used every year. My fingers made soft dinging sounds as I tap-tap-tapped on my empty dinner plate.
After what felt like hours, she raised her hands and mountains of food appeared on the tables. Everyone attacked the food, loading the plates until they overflowed. I carefully spooned mashed potatoes onto my plate, picking the smallest piece of chicken I could find.
“Aren't you going to eat something?” Dom muttered, her sheet of blonde hair dangling dangerously close to her piled plate.
I reached over and pulled her hair back behind her shoulder, before grabbing a Yorkshire pudding and taking a huge bite. “I am eating.” My voice garbled.
She rolled her eyes, and went back to stuffing her face. Dominique may look dainty, but damn, that girl could eat.
The food tasted like sand, sticking to the roof of my mouth. I swallowed hard, and put the batter pudding back onto my plate where it rolled off and fell to the floor. I sighed and reached for my drink.
Finally, after dismantling a chocolate gateau, which sat in a lump of icing and crumbs smeared over my plate, we were dismissed and the benches scraped back. Students flooded through the door, and I let myself be swept away in the sea of people, tightly holding onto both Ryan and Dom's arms.
As soon as we were out of the mob, I dragged them through the Entrance Hall, the stars and whispers still following us, biting at our heels, and into an empty classroom.
“Now,” I exclaimed, whipping around and glaring at them, “will someone please tell me what the hell is going on?”
Dom shuffled awkwardly, pushing her hair behind her ears, but Ryan just crossed her arms and sighed.
“Your mother made us promise not to tell you.” was all she said as she pulled a folded piece of newspaper out of her pocket, which she handed to me silently.
I snatched it out of her hands, and ripped it open, before gaping at what was staring me in the face.
A huge picture showed me, red in the face and ears bright red with rage, slapping Scorpius's pointing finger as he loomed over me, face scrunched up from yelling. I screamed something back and the picture replayed.
'Hate to Love and back to Hate?' was printed in huge bold letters across the top of the page, the words 'Rose Weasley and Scorpius Malfoy have what seems to be a lover's quarrel at this year's New Year's Eve Ball.' under it.
I gasped, my eyes searching the article, not even understanding the words for a moment.
'It seems that there is something more than learning going on in the hallowed halls of Hogwarts these days. Rose Weasley, daughter of two thirds of the Golden Trio; Ron and Hermione Weasley, and Scorpius Malfoy, son of known Death-Eater Draco Malfoy and Astoria Malfoy, always thought to be enemies for obvious reasons concerning their parents, were dating. In love, in fact, we heard it from Ms. Weasley's own mouth. The pair were caught having quite the fight just after the clock struck twelve. 'They were screaming at each other for almost ten minutes.' A witness recounts. 'They looked like they were about it curse each other.' But what was this fight about, you ask? 'I saw her kissing some other boy at midnight.' quotes Beatrice Montague. So innocent daughter, Rose, may not be so innocent. Did our dear Rose cheat? Well, it certainly looks like it. 'He said some nasty things to her, then again she did too, but if she did cheat, well, the little girl deserves it.' Pansy Parkinson-Zabini tells us as she leaves the Ball. Forbidden love, betrayal, Hogwarts hasn't seen this much drama since the war!
I was silent for a moment in horror as I took in the article.
“OH, I AM GOING TO KILL SCORPIUS!”
Once again I'd like to say sorry for another long wait. Life is getting pretty crazy, my relaxing summer turned into a working one, so again sorry! Double sorry for the length of this chapter, I know it's short but it's better than nothing.
I know a lot of you aren't thrilled with Rose and Scorpius's actions, but please keep reviewing!! There hasn't been a lot lately and I'm worried you guys aren't liking Unprepared anymore! Any review is appreciated. Also it's my birthday tomorrow, so it'd make a really good present... :)
Kay, that's it. Thanks for all your support, guys. XOXO
Disclaimer: Harry Potter belongs to J.K. Rowling. Any recongized characters or things aren't mine.
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