22th June 2023
“Hello Ginny,” Rose smiled to her favourite aunt as she rushed through the kitchen in the Potters’ house and made her way to the stairs. Mrs Potter chuckled and waved her on before continuing to prepare lunch. As Rose ran up the stairs, Mrs Potter could hear her yelling for her son. Rose barged into Albus’ room only to find he wasn’t there. As she headed to the ladder up to the loft, she heard voices coming from Lily’s room.
“But Lily…” Albus whined. “It makes sense!”
“No it doesn’t Al,” Lily sighed and Rose could practically hear her rolling her eyes. “Why can’t you just invite him–”
“Invite who?” Rose asked, deciding their conversation wasn’t interesting enough to eavesdrop on. Lily was sitting cross-legged on her bed, a frown etched across her forehead while Albus was sitting on the floor, a hand running through his hair in what Rose knew to be an uncomfortable habit. They both turned to look at her as she jumped onto the bed beside Lily and for a moment she wondered if their conversation had, indeed, meant to be a private one.
“Lysander,” Lily explained. It took one glance at Albus for Rose to figure out what was going on. “Al wants me to invite him for some reason… I thought Hugo was inviting him anyway?” she turned her attention to Albus again.
“Well… Uh…” Albus glanced at Rose uncomfortably.
“Hugo’s inviting someone else,” Rose answered automaticity, at once coming to the aid of her best friend. Both Lily and Albus looked somewhat surprised and Rose silently kicked herself for not coming up with a more plausible excuse, after all, Hugo didn’t actually have many friends.
“Who?” Lily frowned.
“Um… It’s a surprise,” shrugged Rose awkwardly.
“So why can’t you take him Al? Why do you always have to make everything so complicated?”
“Because Lily…” Albus smirked and Rose could tell what was coming next. “We can all see that you fancy him and quite frankly, I don’t. So there. You invite him.” The smirk on Albus’ face was triumphant as Lily turned a startling shade of red before glaring at Rose accusingly.
“Don’t look at me,” Rose yelped. “He noticed it all by himself this time! Shocking isn’t it?” she winked at Albus who just scrunched his nose at her. The colour darkened on Lily’s face.
“I– I don’t– I mean– He’s just…” she stuttered, causing her brother and cousin to laugh at her. “Shut up. I don’t fancy him.” Lily snapped determinedly.
“Sure, sure,” Albus winked.
“Because your face is naturally the same colour as the Gryffindor flag,” teased Rose.
“Come on Lil,” Albus whined. “It makes sense for you to invite the person you fancy. He’s probably, uh, upset that, um, Hugo is taking someone else... So it would be nice for him to know that you’re into him.” Lily was still glaring at them both in denial. “Besides, Ada would still be there, just as someone else’s plus one,” Albus shrugged, trying (quite successfully) to act nonchalant. Only Rose saw through is calm demeanour.
“Oh really,” Lily sneered. “And who’s plus one will she be exactly? She is my best friend!”
“I don’t know… Maybe she can be Rose’s plus one? Or mine?” he added on, the hint of a blush tinging his cheeks. Before Lily could answer however, the door burst open a second time and, had she still be watching her brother’s face, Lily would have been able to guess exactly what Albus had been up to. As it was however, she too turned to the door to see her best friend gliding in.
“You weren’t talking about me, were you? Best friend?” Ada grinned at Lily.
“As a matter of fact we were,” Albus grinned. “As my charming sister here as decide to invite Lysander as her plus one to the bonfire, leaving you completely alone,” he teased, rushing on before Lily could cut across him. He knew he would pay for this later. “I have taken up the noble duty of offering my services and would be honoured, Miss Malfoy, if you would be my plus one?” Albus managed an awkward bow from his seat on the floor making both Ada and Rose chuckle. The latter was watching her best friend in amusement, his subtle flirting with Ada went unnoticed by the other two who just assumed he was being his usual odd self but Rose could see it clear as day.
“Oh really,” Ada laughed, joining the girls on the bed.
“Really,” he grinned, looking her straight in the eye. It was not a particularly unusual action but Ada felt her cheeks warm slightly. They locked eyes for a fraction of a second linger than was strictly necessary. Ada momentarily forgot what they had been talking about.
“Hold on… Lily, you told them?” she turned to her friend in shock. The red instantly returned to Lily’s cheeks and she looked down at the colourful bedspread.
“So it is true!” Albus crowed. “Aw Lils, you could do worse than Lysander,” he smiled affectionately. Lily could not help the faintest of smiles from turning the corners of her mouth to the sky. If Albus approved of her choice then it would make her life a lot easier if anything actually happened with Lysander. If being the operative word.
“Oops,” Ada chuckled. “Sorry Lil.”
“Fine!” Lily snapped. “Maybe I do have a tiny crush on Lysander but it doesn’t mean anything and I still don’t see why I have to invite him to the bonfire!”
“Oh Lily,” Albus rolled his eyes. “Ada, help me out here, doesn’t it make sense for Lily to invite the guy she fancies, especially because I approve of him…” he smiled innocently and Rose wondered just how approving of Lysander he would actually have been had he not had ulterior motives.
“Sure it does Lil,” Ada shrugged. “Besides, if I go with Al, I’ll still be there… It just gives you a chance to let Lysander know he has a chance of catching you,” she winked. Only Rose noticed how Albus’ eyes lit up when Ada said his name; only Rose noticed that Albus’ eyes had stayed fixed on Ada from the moment she had come into the room and only Rose noticed how Albus’ eyes shone with something she had never seen in them before.
23rd June 2023
“Right!” Rose barked to the group in the field behind her house. Having replaced her cousin Dom the previous year as Quidditch Captain, Rose had become somewhat Quidditch obsessed and seeing as half her Quidditch team lived on the same road, she decided that this year, they would practice during the summer as well. The rest of her team had only agreed on the promise that their training sessions would be far more relaxed than those at school.
Along with Rose, the other Beater was Lily while Albus, Ada and Rowan Jordan, Albus’ closest male friend, made up the Chasers. Much to Rose’s amusement and Lily’s mortification, Lysander was their Seeker. Their Keeper, Jenny Hughes, was a petite girl who had joined last year, replacing James’ girlfriend Liv Wood. Although she was the year below Lily and Ada, Jenny had unbelievably quick reflexes and Rose was proud to have found her and given her the spot of Keeper on her team.
Albus and Rowan were currently trying to assault each other, much to Rose’s annoyance, and Lily and Ada were deep in conversation, Rose suspected it had something to do with Lysander due to the frequent glances they were sending in his direction. Lysander himself was sitting at the edge of the field with Jenny and Hugo, who had come to watch the practice.
“I said… Right!” she yelled, causing Lily and Ada to jump. The team quickly assembled when they saw the expression on their captain’s face. On the Quidditch pitch, Rose was nothing short of Satan. “Okay, Chasers, I want you to practice that move you were working on at the end of last year; Lysander, I want you to time how long it takes you to catch the Snitch; Lily I want you to hit Bludgers at the Chasers while they practice–” Rose glared at the three Chasers who had simultaneously groaned. “You don’t think that the other teams are just not going to be aim Bludgers at you, do you?” she barked. “So you’d better get used to it!”
“Yes sir,” Ada muttered under her breath. Albus sent her a discreet smile as she flicked her eyes up to his.
“Well! What are you waiting for?” Rose yelled.
“Uh… The balls?” Albus snorted. Rose glared at him before pointing over a Hugo who was sitting beside the box with the Quidditch balls in it. Albus and Ada went to collect them and Rose could not help but smile as she noticed how close together they were walking.
By the time Jenny had to go home, the team was exhausted and all in agreement that they shouldn’t have another session for a few weeks. All bar Rose that is. She was adamant that they should train constantly throughout the summer. The team left it in Albus’ capable hands to dissuade her from the idea.
Rowan and Albus headed off to the Potters’ house to shower along with Lily and Ada. Rose watched as Albus rubbed his sweaty top in Ada’s face. He had it so bad, it was almost funny.
“What you laughing at?” Hugo queried as she joined him and Lysander in the shade of one of the tress bordering the field.
“Nothing really,” she lied. “So Lysander, Hugo here tells me you’re planning on becoming an Animagus… Any luck so far?”
“Hmm… Well I’ve managed it twice so far but I’m still working on it, it is much harder than you might think, changing your entire body into something else, especially something so small,” he shrugged. Rose had to supress her awe.
“Wow… What animal are you then?”
“A squirrel,” he grinned. “Not that impressive is it?”
“I think it’s awesome!” Rose laughed. “You could collect nuts and everything!”
“Yeah… I’m allergic to nuts,” he frowned and Hugo snorted.
“What! Why the hell are you a squirrel then?”
“I’m kidding,” Lysander chuckled, earning himself a slap on the head from his best friend’s sister. They talked for a while about the process of becoming and Animagi and Rose pondered what animal she might be. She decided that by the end of the summer, she would have started working on the process.
Lysander was an interesting character. He had mid-length brown hair that often fell in front of his unusually pale green eyes but it was his carefree demeanour that attracted people to him. As you might expect from the son of Luna Scamander, he was particularly interested in things that most people thought were faintly ridiculous but he somehow managed to make them sound completely reasonable. Unlike his twin brother Lorcan, who had been sorted into Slytherin, Lysander had joined the majority of the Weasley family in Gryffindor, much to his mother’s amusement, however, unlike most Gryffindors, he was not so easy to read and people were often left at a loss as to what he was thinking.
Rose had known Lysander since she was a child but she had seen much less of him then as he was always away with his parents, traveling to exotic and unheard of places. His friendship with Hugo was an unexpected delight to Mr and Mrs Weasley who were forever worrying about their son. It seemed Lysander had always known about Hugo’s condition, even though none of the adults recall telling him, and he had just accepted it, something that was exceedingly rare in one so young. Rose had put it down to the fact that he was just odd.
“Anyway,” Rose sighed at last. “I’m going to go and shower.”
Upon Mrs Potter informing Rose that Albus was still in the shower, Rose skipped up the stairs and pushed open the door to Lily’s room. “Hey,” she smiled at Lily and Ada who were both showered and dressed, sitting on the bed. Ada returned the greeting but Lily did not appear to notice as she stared down at her crossed legs, deep in thought. After a moments silence, Lily spoke.
“Hey Rose,” she smiled. “Ada was just wondering if I wanted to go round to her place at some point during this holiday,” Lily explained and her cousin immediately understood her predicament. Ada lived at her family home, Malfoy Manor and, although none of them had been there before, they had heard about it in both History of Magic and their parents occasional stories. Rose could tell Lily was nervous.
“Cool,” Rose grinned. “Can I come?” she asked and Lily visibly relaxed at the thought of not having to go alone.
“Sure,” Ada grinned, clearly delighted that her friend was finally coming to see her house. It was something she had struggled with for years, the knowledge that one of the darkest wizards in history had used her home as a Head Quarters during the war years. It made her nervous about inviting people over but she had decided it was high time her best friend saw her home and made up her own mind on the place.
“Sure what?” a voice asked from the doorway as Albus popped his head in. “Hey Ada,” he nodded, coming fully into the room and taking his usual seat on the floor. Albus had a weird obsession with sitting on the floor, even if there were perfectly good chairs to be sat on, he would always choose the floor.
“Ada just invited us to Malfoy Manor,” Rose explained, trying to keep the warning in her voice barely detectable. Albus’ eyes narrowed slightly but he alone got the warning tone in Rose’s words and forced himself not to become too judgemental of the place.
“Oh really,” he raised an eyebrow. “And I’m not invited am I?” he smirked teasingly at Ada.
“Only if you must Potter,” Ada laughed, rolling her eyes but at the same time feeling oddly pleased that Albus was joining them. Please and somewhat nervous. Which was odd because Ada Malfoy never felt nervous.
“Good,” he grinned back at her and Rose had to refrain from rolling her eyes at her cousin. He was completely besotted. “So when are we going?”
“Well…” Ada said hesitantly. “I mean, are you doing anything after lunch?”
“Nope,” Rose, Lily and Albus coursed together, although Albus was a fraction of a second before the other two.
“Well you could come over after lunch if you wanted,” Ada suggested, eager to get her friends to her house before they changed their minds.
“Mum’s already made lunch so yeah, that sounds like a plan,” Albus smiled.
“Speaking of lunch,” Rose interjected. “I’m starved!”
“Well I’ve got to go home for lunch but how about you come over in like an hour and a half?” Ada suggested and the two redheaded girls nodded while Albus just continued to stare at Ada.
Once lunch was cleaned away, Mr Potter offered to apparate them to Malfoy Manor. Rose was slightly shocked that Mr Potter knew the location well enough to apparate there but didn’t think too long about it. It took only five minutes from Mr Potter’s offer until they were all stood before a large wrought iron gate.
“Well have fun,” Mr Potter grinned, ruffling his son’s hair before disapparating and leaving the three teenagers staring awkwardly at the gate.
“Hello Master Potter, Mistress Potter and Mistress Weasley,” a little voice squeaked up at them. They simultaneous glanced down to see the smallest House Elf any of them had ever seen opening the gates for them. “Mistress Ada said you would be arriving now. Come inside. Follow Honory, I is showing you the way,” smiled the House Elf. The three of them followed in silence, each lost in their own thoughts and apprehensions about the Manor they were about to enter. Upon first glance, the manor looked like any other manor in England, however on closer inspection, Rose noticed tell-tale signs of both magical inhabitants and of the war. Although the later was considerably harder to spot.
The House Elf led them up a gravel path and through the large oak front doors. Inside, they followed a wide hallway until they reached a round room.
“If you will just be waiting here, Honory will be fetching her Mistress Ada,” the House Elf grinned and dashed off. The three of them did not break their silence as they looked around the room they had been lead to. It was really more of a hall than a room, with corridors leading off in every direction and light pouring in from a variety of windows, most of which Rose could not see, as well as a magnificent domed ceiling that appeared to be made entirely of glass and let in fractured sunbeams. Both Lily and Rose were staring at the ceiling in wonder while Albus stood to the side, partially hidden in the shadows and staring up at the top of the grand staircase that took up a large portion of the room.
Rose’s thoughts wondered once more to why she had decided to come here, this was after all the house where her mother had been tortured, where Voldemort had spent so much time in the run up to the Battle of Hogwarts. She was surprised by the lightness of the place, she had been unsure what to expect but she had always assumed it would be dark and ancient. While the frame work and the majority of the furniture in the house was indeed several centuries old, it appeared well cared for and was cleverly selected. Upon noticing Albus was staring at something in particular, Rose followed his gaze and her eyes came to rest upon the figure of Ada Malfoy leaning on the banister at the top of the staircase and gaging their reactions to her home. Deciding it best to attract the attention to herself before Ada noticed the expression on Albus’ face, Rose called out.
“Hey Ada,” she sang, smiling up at her and noticing Albus jolt from his thoughts in the corner of her eye. Ada returned her greeting while skipping down the stairs two at a time.
“Hey,” she said again when she finally stopped before her friends. “So… what do you think?”
“It’s…” Lily began before trailing off and looking back up at the domed ceiling.
“Light?” Rose suggested with a grin causing Ada to laugh. Had Rose not chosen that moment to glance at Albus, she never would have noticed the way his jaw clenched at the sound of Ada’s laugh. A tiny frown etched itself on Rose’s forehead.
“Come on, I’ll show you to the kitchen,” Ada grabbed Lily’s arm and dragged her off, Albus followed close behind. Sending one last look of awe at the domed glass roof, Rose span on the spot before following the others down one of the hallway. Curiosity got the better of her as she went and she found herself glancing through the open doors that lead off the hallway. Each room was filled with light shining though large windows that contrasted once again with the gloomy picture she had created in her mind. Dark mahogany furniture littered the rooms, covered in pale green or white tablecloths, cushions, coverings… Rose spotted pale pinks, blues, yellows, purples… even finding some reds hidden in in what appeared to be a music room.
When she reached the large double doors at the end of the corridor, Rose realised she was in fact alone; turning, she began to retrace her footsteps.
Voices drifted through one of the doors that had been partially left open. Pushing the door open further, Rose stepped into a smaller hallway. It was somewhat darker in here but not unpleasantly so; there was a smaller staircase on the right and several doors leading off to the left. Rose glanced quickly around before her eyes were drawn back to the staircase. Standing several step from the top, a look of complete and utter shock written across his face, was Scorpius Malfoy. Topless. One hand still holding a towel to his damp hair. His blue jeans hung low on his hips and his white boxers were visible above them.
Rose flushed a furious shade of red as she forced herself to divert her gaze from his unbelievably toned stomach. He simply stood there, staring at her with that unreadable expression in his grey eyes that Rose would soon become painfully familiar with.
“Uh… Hi?” Rose muttered lamely, unsure what else to say. At that point, one of the doors to Rose’s left opened and Ada appeared.
“Rose, there you are… Why are you so red?” she frowned before following Rose’s gaze to see her brother standing half-dressed on the stairs. A laugh escaped her lips. “Oh hey Scorp,” she snorted. “Did I forget to mention I was having guests over?”
“Evidently…” Scorpius Malfoy replied quietly, not taking his eyes from Rose’s still red face. “Weasley,” he nodded before turning and walking back up the stairs.
“Sorry about that,” Ada laughed again once her brother had vanished from sight. She directed Rose through the door she had just come from into what appeared to be the kitchen. Pale grey stone slabs covered the floor and the units were made of wood and painted a cream colour with lighter oak surfaces. At the island unit in the centre of the room, Albus and Lily were chatting and drinking exotic looking cocktails.
“Hey, where’d you disappear off to Rose?” Lily raised an eye brow.
“Rose just had a run in with my twat of a brother who decided that today would be a good day to walk around the house topless,” Ada answered for her.
“Isn’t he dishy Rose?” Lily waggled her eyebrows suggestively causing Rose to ponder about how expressive her cousin’s eyebrows actually were.
Ada squealed in disgust. “That’s my brother!” she exclaimed. “That’s like me saying Al’s hot!”
“Yeah, you’re right… sorry,” laughed Lily. Rose glanced at Albus to see he was looking just as uncomfortable as she was currently feeling. “So is he going to come back down or is he going to be a broody Slytherin and stay away from us brave Gryffindors?” Lily asked Ada in a tone normally associated with dirty gossip.
“I think you’ll find that not all Slytherins are broody, Miss Potter,” came a husky from behind Rose causing her to jump slightly and turn around. Scorpius Malfoy was leaning against the doorframe (now with a thin grey jumper clinging to his upper body covering up the muscles Rose now knew were beneath it). This time it was Lily’s turn to blush.
The next few moment Rose would always recall as some of the most awkward in her life. Ada had clearly not expected her brother to come down again and was staring at him in puzzlement, still posed in the process of pouring Rose a drink; Lily was anxiously looking between everyone in the hope that someone would say something so to lessen her embarrassment; Albus was staring moodily down at his feet seemingly oblivious to everything; Malfoy was still standing there, watching everyone with a slightly amused leer on his face and Rose was trying desperately to look anywhere but at Malfoy. Needless to say, she was not overly successful.
“Scorpius Hyperion Malfoy!” a woman’s voice yelled from upstairs, finally breaking the silence that had befallen the five teenagers in the kitchen. “What have I told you about leaving wet towels on the floor? They will never dry like that!” Malfoy closed his eyes and titled his head back onto the doorframe before rolling around and vanishing into the hall. Rose could hear the sound of his footsteps echoing off the stairs.
Okay, so I probably need to go through and edit it but I just wanted to post it first for you all to read. Enjoy and reviews are lovely... HiddenFace x
P.S. Isn't Scorpius just scrumptious... And yes I did just use the word 'scrumptious' get over it.