Chapter 6 : Then and Now
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Roxanne didn’t want him to leave. “Do you have to go home now?” she asked Benjamin for the thousandth time as he walked her back towards her father’s joke shop. Diagon Alley was bustling with activity still and they went unnoticed even though they were both dripping with toilet water and probably smelling like a troll’s armpit from their recent adventure. They’d wasted the afternoon away putting cherry bombs in various bathrooms and had almost been caught but had run away before they could be grabbed by the throats by the furious owner of a Muggle Cuisine restaurant, “Why can’t you stay over my house?” she pressed around a frown.
“I have to go home, lump. I can’t stay and hang out with you all day.” Benjamin replied with an annoyed glance down at her. She looked up at him, frowning and near tears and he said awkwardly, “Look, er, I’ll come back in a few days, okay?”
Roxanne found herself pouting and he gave her hand a little squeeze. A smile started to curve despite herself and she swung their hands together, which caused his cheeks to turn a little pink even as a frown started to appear on his face, “When you come back I’ll let you meet my mum and she’ll make us something to eat. And then you can meet all my cousins,”
“I don’t want to meet your cousins.” Benjamin said stiffly and Roxanne frowned, not understanding why he wouldn’t like her family very much. He was a Malfoy but he didn’t seem all that bad, especially not after giving her those pretty daisies (They’d gotten wet from an exploding toilet and she’d sadly had to throw them away), “but I wouldn’t mind meeting your mum. She’s really pretty.”
Roxanne wondered if she would grow up looking like her mother. Maybe if she did, he would say she was pretty too, “You could stay for dinner tonight if you want. Mum is making cherry pie,” she invited and Benjamin frowned and shook his head a little, his blue-brown eyes flickering with indecision. “My parents won’t mind and my brother probably won’t come home today.”
Benjamin seemed oddly glad of this and she saw that he appeared very relieved. She was pretty sure that they didn’t get along well at Hogwarts, “How come?” he asked.
“He might stay with Teddy Lupin or go over our Aunt Audrey and Uncle Percy’s. They spoil him even more than mum and dad do,” Roxanne explained, shrugging. She wanted to go see Molly and Lucy soon too and tell them about her new friend but she doubted if they would like him very much, “so you can have dinner with us!”
“I gotta ask my mum and dad though,” Benjamin muttered, blushing. Roxanne felt his hand tightening around hers a little and she was just about to ask him what was wrong when he asked uncomfortably. “When do you come to Hogwarts lump?”
Roxanne frowned. “I’m not a lump!”
Benjamin grinned. “Yes you are. You’re all plump and cu—stupid.” He amended hastily and Roxanne glared up at him and then turned her face away, nose in the air. “So when do you go to Hogwarts?” he asked again, smiling broadly.
“I go next year!” Roxanne proclaimed proudly, instantly all smiles. She was really nervous about it though because her parents kept telling her horror stories and Perce had her thinking that the giant squid that lived in the Black Lake would come out at night and eat her.
“You’d better be in Slytherin then.” Benjamin said firmly and when Roxanne merely stared up at him in confusion, the two of them nearly running into a couple on the sidewalk, he explained smugly. “I’m a Slytherin and it’s the best House in the school.”
Roxanne furrowed her brow thoughtfully. “But my brother said all Slytherins are mean and sneaky.” She said and she wasn’t really sure if this was true or not but she hoped that it wasn’t because Benjamin wasn’t mean, he was actually very nice.
Benjamin frowned a little and he glanced at her as if he expected her to say something else but when she didn’t and continued walking with him, he finally said. “All Slytherins aren’t bad, okay? Your brother and your cousins are wrong.” He said fiercely.
Roxanne wondered if her brother and cousins had been rather mean to him and wondered, awkwardly, how to make it better. She would have to tell Perce not to bother him anymore since he was her friend now but she didn’t know if he would bother listening to her, “I don’t think they’re all bad. I’ve never met a Slytherin before you and you’re not so mean,” to her at least, “even my Uncle Harry says all Slytherins aren’t mean.”
That seemed to make Benjamin feel a little bit better and she watched as his frown deepened a little before he asked. “You gonna try and get into Slytherin with me lump? I don’t think I’d like it if you’d wind up being in Gryffindor. They’re all so full of shit,” he muttered.
“Ooh, you said a bad word!” Roxanne crowed, impressed. Benjamin shrugged but looked a little proud of himself at the expression on her face, “my mum says that sometimes when my dad is getting on her nerves.”
“Really?” Benjamin asked with a laugh.
Roxanne nodded, adding. “She also calls him Georgia too cause she says he’s real moody and acts like a girl sometimes.” That had Benjamin laughing harder and she wondered what his parents were like and if they played as much as her own but he didn’t offer any hints. “I don’t think I want to be a Gryffindor, my whole family has been there! My cousin Molly is a Ravenclaw and I really love her but I’ll be in Slytherin with you.”
Benjamin smiled then and it was the happiest smile that she had ever seen. It seemed to come from some deep, secret place in his heart and transformed his face. It made him appear so much nicer and she felt her cheeks turning a bit red and joy flood her system, “Really, Weasley? Promise?” he asked eagerly.
“Promise! I’ll be the best Slytherin ever!” Roxanne declared importantly and he squeezed her hand for a moment, still giving her that happy smile before they continued on their way. By the time they reached her father’s joke shop, they were chattering and making more plans when they would see one another again, most of them things that they would get into trouble for.
Benjamin was just suggesting that they throw water balloons at the elderly when the clink of the joke shop’s door opening alerted them to reality.
Roxanne glanced towards the entrance, a smile on her face growing at the sight of her brother standing just outside the door, looking thunderous, “What are you doing with my sister?” Perce demanded, taking in her rumpled clothes and probably inhaling the stench of toilet water.
“Perce, don’t be mean!” Roxanne chided annoyingly. Her brother looked as if he had had the time of his life away from home and she saw their father standing with their mother inside, the shop apparently getting ready to close as a few customers still meandered about. The brightness of the shop always made her happy but her brother’s expression made her a little confused, “this is Benjamin Malfoy, he’s my friend.”
Perce and Benjamin eyed one another as if they would love nothing more than to rip each other’s faces off and she looked between them worriedly. “I know who he is and I don’t want you talking to him.” Her brother gritted out furiously, “what do you think you’re up to anyway, Malfoy?”
Benjamin flushed an ugly red and moved in front of Roxanne as if he would actually hit her brother and she felt her body infuse with panic. Perce stepped further outside, slamming the door behind them and their parents looked towards the sound in alarm, “I’m not up to anything Weasley. You think you’d be keeping a better eye on your sister, right? She was sitting on a bench today all by herself.”
“What’d you do to her?” Perce demanded angrily as he took in Roxanne’s face. She was growing more and more angry at her brother, not understanding why he was being this way, “if I find out that you put your hands on her—” his voice trailed away as he noticed their hands still clasped. “Roxie, come here.”
“How come?” Roxanne demanded angrily. When she didn’t move fast enough her brother took her arm and snatched her roughly away from Benjamin, who tried to hold onto her fingers for a second longer before forcing his hand into a tight fist. “Ow, Percy! Let me go you prat!”
Benjamin was glaring at her brother fiercely and said tightly. “Why don’t you try being little nicer to your sister, prick? I didn’t do anything to her,”
Perce glowered at him while Roxanne nearly clawed his face off. “Would you quit it? Merlin!” he snapped angrily as she gave him a sharp bite on his wrist that had him howling in pain before he managed to hiss at Benjamin, who was laughing. “And Malfoy, stay away from my sister. You think you’re something special but she doesn’t know any better.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?! He’s my friend,” Roxanne cried, feeling a sting.
There was the briefest of pauses before her brother managed to speak, as if what she had said was too horrible to comprehend. “He is not your friend! Rejects like him don’t have friends!” Perce snarled down at her. Roxanne burst into tears and he recoiled, “oh, for God’s sake don’t start!” he cried.
Roxanne sniffled, her lip trembling and her brother eyed her as if she were an atom bomb waiting to explode. Benjamin was standing there, looking shocked and dangerously angry but he said nothing and that seemed to make it even worse, even though she couldn’t understand then how much her brother’s words had hurt him. “I-I’m telling!” she wailed.
“Don’t you dare!” Perce warned furiously.
The remaining customers in the shop had now left but they eyed the three of them with amusement and wary fascination before they walked away.
Roxanne waited for them to leave before glaring at her brother, opening her mouth and shouting as loudly as she could in a carrying voice that would make a banshee flinch, “DAAAAAAAADDY!"
Perce was about to let her go but it was too late and their father, who seemed to have rushed over as if the world were ending, opened the door. Roxanne had seen him angry more than once but she had never seen him this furious before and he glared down at her brother sternly, “What are you doing?” he demanded.
“I wasn’t doing anything—Roxie, shut up!” Perce snapped angrily at Roxanne, who was still sobbing a little even as her brother released her. Benjamin had slunk down the sidewalk as if he meant to make a run for it but her father shot him a glance and he surprisingly stayed where he was, “I was just telling her not to hang around this Malfoy kid.”
“Daddy, he was being mean to me!” Roxanne accused, still sniffling.
Their father took in her flooded eyes; Perce’s annoyed expression and the uncomfortable stance of Benjamin and sighed wearily. “Stop crying beautiful girl, it’s all right,” he said as he saw her lips trembling and more tears threatening to fall.
Perce rolled his eyes. “Such a brat,” he muttered.
Ignoring him, Roxanne rushed to their father and wrapped her arms around his waist and received a gentle pat on the top of her curly head. Her mother hadn’t come out but she knew that she was watching from inside, probably wondering when it would be best to take over if her husband couldn’t handle it, “First of all, what is that smell?” their father asked, wrinkling his nose before he bent and inhaled a few strands of her hair, “Merlin, beautiful girl. Take a bath when you get up in the flat and second, Fred, why are you trying to pick a fight?”
Perce flushed angrily, but Benjamin was eyeing him meanly and if Roxanne hadn’t known any better, she would have seen that his feelings were hurt. “I wasn’t trying to pick a fight with anyone!” he lied, looking very much like their father with that one action. Benjamin glared at him viciously, “he was holding her hand! What was I supposed to do?”
“Holding her hand?” Their father repeated curiously, brown eyes going a bit wide. Roxanne didn’t know why she was blushing but she saw Benjamin’s mouth tightening a little, his fists clenched tightly at his sides, “you hold hands with Leanne Wood and your sister doesn’t get mad at you.”
Perce blushed and his entire face turned scarlet. It was an interesting contrast to his dark skin and Roxanne giggled, “B-but that’s different! I know Leanne! Roxanne doesn’t know him,” he jerked his head at Benjamin, who rolled his eyes and then lowered them to the ground.
Their father was grinning a little, the dimple in his right cheek almost appearing. There was nothing he loved more than teasing Perce about his crush on Leanne Wood but he eventually let it go and Roxanne saw his expression sober, “Were you hurting her?” their father asked, swiveling his very red head in Benjamin’s direction. He stiffened at being addressed and opened his mouth, probably for some sharp comment but when Roxanne saw her father raise his eyebrows in that I-don’t-want-any-lies way, he closed it. “No? Yes?”
Benjamin muttered. “No, sir,”
Perce glared at him, obviously disbelieving. “He could have been!”
Roxanne frowned and hugged their father’s waist defensively. “He wasn’t stupid! He was just walking me home!” she looked up at their father, who was watching the argument unfurling as if he didn’t really know what to do. At their house, their mother handed out the discipline and he looked a bit lost, “Daddy, he’s my friend. He wasn’t doing anything wrong.”
“I saw you two while you were coming up and he didn’t look like he was doing anything wrong to me, Fred. I thought I taught you better than that,” their father said with a frown at his son. Perce looked startled to be on the wrong end of his affections today and glared at Roxanne, “Benjamin right?” he had turned his attention to the other boy, who was eyeing him as if he would take out his wand.
Or worse, spank him.
“Yeah,” Benjamin mumbled, staring up at him.
“I don’t mind you talking to my daughter but I don’t want any trouble between you and my son. So, the thing to do right now is make you hug.” That caused a slight silence and Roxanne watched as her brother flinched, Benjamin appearing disgusted, “it’s what my mum used to make my brothers do when they were fighting too much.”
Roxanne wondered which brothers he was talking about but her father wasn’t smiling and she assumed he was thinking about his twin. It made her sad too but she heard Perce snap, “I am not doing that!”
“Why not?” their father asked lightly.
Benjamin grunted. “He’s a bloke! I don’t hug other blokes—and especially ones that aren’t good-looking enough!” at that, Roxanne heard her father roar with laughter. It made the other boy flush embarrassingly even while Perce regarded him as if he were slime on his boot, “I didn’t even do anything wrong!”
It was true but Roxanne was distracted by the hurt in his eyes and even more so when the door opened behind her father. “What are you making them do?” it was her mother and the immediate appearance of her caused Benjamin to straighten up, his whole face turning pink. “I thought you could handle this on your own, Georgia but apparently not.”
“So I owe you a Galleon?” was her father’s reluctant reply.
“And you’re doing the dishes and painting my toes for a month.” Roxanne’s mother said with a grin before she turned her attention to the three of them. She took in Roxanne’s pout and the way she was clinging to her father with a sigh, “this is what happens when you spoil her, George. What’s the issue?”
Perce was the first to speak, his chest poked out. “Dad wants me to hug that stinking Malfoy boy and I’m not going to do it. He was holding Roxie’s hand Mum!” he waved his arms around to emphasize his point.
Their mother’s mouth dipped down in a disapproving frown and Roxanne watched as she gave him a stern look that caused him to deflate immediately. “We’re going to have a little discussion about name-calling before you get to bed, Fred. Didn’t we raise you better than that?” Perce frowned furiously, kicking at the ground. “And Roxie, you can’t always go crying to your dad when you can’t get your way.”
Roxanne blushed, not liking the words. “But Mum,”
But her mother wasn’t looking at her, she was looking at Benjamin. He was staring at her as if he would give her the moon and she bent down a bit until they were eye level, “You’re not a bad kid, are you?” when he shook his head, she gave him a smile, “now tell me the truth. Were you trying to play a trick on my daughter or were you just being a gentleman and walking her home?”
“I wasn’t going to do anything to her,” Benjamin said meekly and he looked hopeful that she would believe him and when she nodded, seeing nothing but the truth, he relaxed. “She was by herself in Diagon Alley and I decided to walk her home. Not a crime or anything,” he muttered.
“Now this was just a big misunderstanding and I want the two of you to apologize.” Roxanne heard her mother say and she stood and moved away from Benjamin. Perce glared at him just as she said, “Now hug, shake hands and come inside for something to eat.”
Perce looked ill. “I’m not hugging Malfoy…”
Benjamin glanced longingly at Roxanne, then miserably at her mother. Something in his face had changed and she saw that his fists were shaking, that he looked like he was being torn apart on the inside, “Forget it! I don’t want anything to do with you stupid Weasley’s anyway.” And with that, he stalked away but not before Roxanne saw that his eyes had been glassy with oncoming tears.
“Good riddance,” Perce snapped.
Their mother glared over at him. “Fred Percival!” she snapped angrily, looking as if she might just give him a good spanking. Roxanne watched her brother recoil and glance at their father hopefully but he merely shrugged, not being the one to get in the middle of it when he’d get the wrong end of his own wife’s fist. “You go and apologize to that boy right now before he gets away!”
Perce flushed furiously, panic written all over his face. “What? No!” that only caused their mother’s face to become a thunderous, impatient monstrosity and he flinched. “I’m not going to do anything like that. He should stay away from Roxie!"
“Look what you did!” Roxanne found herself sobbing furiously at her brother, who was gawping after Benjamin as if he couldn’t think of something to say. Their parents looked both angry and a little concerned but she wasn’t sure if they were upset about her friend or not, “Now he’s not going to be my friend anymore! I hate you Fred!” she cried, disentangling herself from their father fiercely.
Their mother frowned severely, instantly distracted as her brother stared at her with true hurt flickering in his brown eyes. “That’s not nice, Roxie, you take that back!” their mother commanded angrily.
Roxanne shook her head, sobbing. “No! Leave me alone!” she pushed away from her father when he tried to pull her back to him and ran as fast and as hard as she could from them. Benjamin had walked faster than was possible and was nothing but a tall speck on the sidewalk and she rushed after him, “Wait! Don’t leave me! Wait!”
“Roxanne, wake up.” Benjamin’s voice floated around her as if from a great distance and she groggily opened one of her eyes. His hand was gently pushing at her bare shoulder, forcing her out of a memory that still felt as fresh as if it had happened merely hours before, “lump, wake up. You’re talking in your sleep.”
Blearily, Roxanne tried to focus and felt a bolt of heat go over her as she realized exactly what she had done and with whom. “…I-I was?” she asked weakly, unable to look him in the eye as he peered down at her, his elbow propped up so he could observe her more clearly. She feared that he had been watching her sleep and a fresh blush flashed over her cheeks and she buried her face in his pillow, “stop staring! It’s embarrassing!”
It was more than a little silly to be embarrassed when she thought of what she had allowed herself to do against her better judgment.
Roxanne hadn’t been able to say no, she hadn’t been able to stop herself from responding to more kisses, touches and caresses…little words in her ear and by the time that her mind had started spinning again, she’d lost herself.
There had been a time, in her fantasies of seeing Benjamin again but she had never expected it to lead to this, with her naked body shielded beneath silk sheets and his own body so close to her own. Even now, after the last time that they’d… “With everything that I did to you, you sure do have a lot of nerve, Weasley.” Benjamin said with a wolfish grin.
She felt a prickle of irritation even as something stirred in the most indecent places. There was a shift on the mattress as Benjamin rolled over and she suspected that he would get out of bed and the dream would be over and she would come back to the real world but instead, he merely stayed put. Confused and hearing her heart pounding in a crazy tempo, Roxanne looked up from his pillow, which smelt so nice like his skin— “You…you’re not going to kick me out?” she whispered nervously.
Benjamin was lying on his stomach, facing her but she wasn’t able to sense his thoughts. There was always something so guarded and hard about the look in his eyes but just now, they were heavy and relaxed, the hue in them more brown than blue, “Why would I do that?” he asked lazily, his eyes roaming over her hair.
Roxanne felt a zing go up her arm as she felt his long fingers pulling her closer. She resisted a little but he eventually had his way until they were only a breath apart, the heat from his skin causing a flood of renewed sensation to churn, “Cause…all the girls say you do that.” She mumbled, distracted a bit as his fingers drifted up to play in her hair.
“Really, now?” Benjamin asked lazily, his voice sleep-scratchy. His fingers were wrapping around the strands that hung crazily around her face, nearly shielding the wide eyed expression on her face, “and did you hear that from Miranda Patil?”
Roxanne blushed guiltily and watched as his lips turned up in a smile. She couldn’t quite get the words out and was instantly distracted as he slid his fingers out of her hair and trailed a gentle touch to her jaw, the curve of her cheek and settling briefly on her lips. They were swollen and she must have made a sound because he gave her the softest of kisses before pulling away, looking only slightly apologetic, “You kiss too rough you know,” she said teasingly.
“I didn’t hear you complaining about it, lump,” Benjamin shot back, looking wide eyed. Roxanne found herself giggling a little as he brushed his mouth along her jaw, nibbling and kissing, “tell me what you heard from Miranda Patil. You’ve got me curious,” he whispered, pulling away just before their lips would have met.
Roxanne sensed that he had done it on purpose and was briefly embarrassed that she had fallen for it, unable to understand how he seemed to have such a hold on her. After swallowing a little, she said, “Well, she said you and her…you know,” she couldn’t even say the words out loud and he burst out laughing, his chest rumbling. “Shut up! It isn’t funny!” she cried but he was laughing all the harder and she punched him in the arm, “you think you’re so cool!”
Benjamin captured her fist before she could hit him again and rose up a little, watching as her eyes drifted over his bare chest. Roxanne blushed all the harder but heard him ask as his fingers laced with hers, a slow movement that drew a quivering sigh from her lips, “I am cool, lump. And just so you know, Miranda Patil was such a bad lay that I’d have been stupid to go back.”
“So you and she really did…?” Roxanne demanded, struck by the sting of jealousy. She was being ridiculous of course because there was no reason that she should be jealous of anyone that had slept with Benjamin before her but some part of her thought of him as hers. No one knew him as well as she did, and no one would take him from her—the thought was startling and made her feel briefly ashamed of herself, “oh. Well, that’s, uhm, not any of my business.”
“Jealous, Weasley?” Benjamin asked slyly as his eyes scanned over her. She was holding the sheets up to her chest and eyeing him, trying not to appear as hurt as she did on the inside, “you’re pouting again.” Roxanne glared at him and hated that it was true, “I really love it when you do that.”
“I’m not pouting!”
Benjamin was grinning evilly and she was embarrassed to note that he didn’t seem to mind that the sheets were sliding off him. Some part of her wanted to look but she fixedly kept her gaze on his, “You are pouting, it’s the cutest thing,” he whispered gently as he bent over her, “and you know what that makes me want to do?”
Roxanne gawped at him, shaking her head. “No, you leave me alone!” she cried but he was already running his hands over her and tickling her. Laughter bubbled up in her chest and although she tried her hardest to get away, he was bigger and faster than she was and soon had her pinned underneath him as easily as if she were a little kid again, “no! Stop—haha, stop! Prat, this isn’t—not there!” she cried in humiliation as he got a place behind her knee.
“Give in Weasley—ow!” Benjamin hissed angrily as she punched him rather hard in his shoulder. She was trying to get away from him and was kicking wildly, the sheets flying in every direction, “that’s it!” he snarled playfully when she actually bit his arm.
Roxanne tried to push at him, laughing and near to tears as he took her wrists and put them over her head and pressed her back onto the mattress. “Cheater!” she cried, gasping. Benjamin was panting, his cheeks flushed and he bent to nip playfully at her lower lip, relaxing his hold on her wrists and forcing them over his head until her fingers curled into his hair. His braid had come loose from earlier and she thought back to her own frenzy to have him and blushed, “I have to, uhm, get home soon you know.”
“What are you blushing so much about? You turn red all over,” Benjamin whispered in between kisses and she squirmed underneath him in indignation. “And you’re sweet all over…” Roxanne couldn’t breathe from what else he said and while she was gawping up at him, flooded with need and embarrassment, he said firmly, “Just send an owl to your parents and lie and say you’re with a friend.”
“It wouldn’t really be a lie. You are my friend,” Roxanne found herself saying distractedly as she felt his hands traveling. She could barely breathe from wanting more, “they’ll know I’m lying and I’ll get in trouble for s-sneaking out and stop that!” she spluttered when his kisses started to lower to her throat, “I don’t even know what time it is,”
Benjamin murmured something against her throat before rising up on his hands to peer down at her. She saw a flicker of annoyance growing in his eyes and something uneasy passed between them, “So what? You came here on your own. You didn’t think about how you were going to be getting back did you?”
Roxanne didn’t like the accusation he placed on her and she glanced away from him, knowing that it was more than a little true. She had been so excited on seeing him and being near him for a while that she had carelessly forgotten about how and when she would be returning to the Burrow, “You don’t have to sound like such an ass about it. I wasn’t exactly expecting you to crash my grandparent’s anniversary.”
“How else was I supposed to talk to you, Weasley?” Benjamin asked, the annoyance sharpening into something rather nasty. Roxanne glowered up at him, even though she was both confused and wary by the sudden turn of conversation, “did you think that your mum and dad would have liked it if I’d came knocking on their door?”
He had never even been inside their flat no matter how many times Roxanne had invited him to come up and have dinner, play games and watch Muggle TV. The hatred and disdain he felt for her family shouldn’t have been forgotten but she’d foolishly assumed that he would turn around…since he had her of course, “They actually wouldn’t mind it. My mum sort of likes you.”
Benjamin rolled his eyes and she saw that they were shifting from blue to brown and back again, a true sign that he was growing more than a little frustrated. “They can’t stand me. Just like all the rest of your family,” he muttered down to her.
“What? Don’t say that! My dad, he, uhm, doesn’t hate you.” Roxanne tried to say and she saw that that hardly mattered. A tick started to work its way in his jaw, “and I don’t care that you’re my friend, how many times have I told you that it doesn’t matter?”
Benjamin was silent for a long moment and she felt distinctly uncomfortable for most of them, the feel of his body over hers a distraction that she didn’t necessarily need. “It does matter. You’ve got no idea how much it fucking matters.” He snapped.
“Don’t you get mad at me! I don’t even know what your issue is!” Roxanne cried furiously, taken aback by the fierce way he regarded her. Had it just been a few moments ago when he had tickled and kissed her? She felt the hot threat of anger coming onto her more strongly than she would have liked, “I’m not embarrassed of you!”
“Then bring me home with you and tell your grand old family what you’ve been up to for most of the morning. Be sure to be extremely graphic,” Benjamin said coldly, a nasty gleam in his eyes. When Roxanne faltered, knowing that her parent’s wrath would be something fierce, he misinterpreted her expression and his upper lip curled, “Afraid that your brother won’t approve?” he sneered.
Roxanne frowned, knowing that there was no one else in her family that he despised as much as her own brother and some part of her couldn’t blame him. Not after what she had found out so long ago, “What does my brother have to do with this? I don’t want to get in trouble, okay? It’s not like I’m embarrassed,” she said, feeling suddenly uncomfortable with him leaning over her.
Sensing it, Benjamin leaned further and harder over her, making it impossible for her to leave and she frowned up at him. He knew that she couldn’t move from underneath him and her weakness only served to make him smile, the warmth in his eyes leaving, “Don’t want your family to know? Afraid of what they might say to you?”
“You’re the one who told me to lie! I don’t care that they know but this isn’t the way to tell them about us,” Roxanne found herself saying tightly. She knew that no one in her family would be pleased, especially her cousins but their disapproval had never stopped her from speaking and being near him before and she wasn’t sure why it suddenly seemed to matter to him. “I want to…I want you anyway.”
Benjamin’s black brows quirked up a little, as if he were confused by something and she felt a bit of lead enter her heart. Apparently, those weren’t the words that he had been expecting and he was silent for a long time and she felt her lower lip trembling a little, knowing that she had made a sort of mistake, “You want me anyway? You don’t care about my family, huh?”
Roxanne swallowed hard, tasting a sour flavor that disgusted her. “I don’t care about what your family might think about us, I really don’t.”
“No, it’s not that. You think you can handle being seen with someone like me? You think we can walk down the street together without someone making a remark? Without someone pointing out how much of a disaster my family is?” Benjamin demanded and when Roxanne didn’t readily reply, he barked a cruel laugh. “I should have figured that a spoiled little girl like you couldn’t handle the real world.”
Roxanne felt a sob coming on, unable to help herself. “That’s not…that’s not important! Get off of me!” when he didn’t move and merely stared down at her in a way that made her feel like the lowest worm, she said the words that she knew would destroy them. “Why are you asking me those sorts of questions? Is it because we’re…we’re together now? Is that what this is all about? Why are you so mad?”
It was as if she had dumped a bucket of ice water onto them both and she watched, horrified and stunned as Benjamin rolled off of her. The mattress seemed to sag with the turn of emotions and Roxanne watched as he slipped out of the bed, ignoring her completely as he picked up his trousers and slipped them back on, not bothering to button. “Weasley that is not happening,” he said tightly. “Not ever,”
Roxanne felt something, she wasn’t quite sure what, shattered and she balled her hands into fists. A slight tremor was starting that she couldn’t fight back; “A-and why not?” she demanded as she watched him run his fingers through his hair, pushing aside long dark strands. He appeared as distant and untouchable as a stranger and some part of her whispered that he had been and she just hadn’t wanted to see it, “what’s so wrong about it?”
“Let me make something clear. I don’t ever want to be attached to anyone and especially not to you and your fucking family. This was a mistake, I shouldn’t have even gone to see you tonight,” Benjamin said this all so clearly, so coldly that Roxanne felt goose bumps rising on her skin. How could this be happening? Why was this happening? What had she said that was so wrong? “I need you to leave,”
As if she could have ever left him, not after being his friend despite what others had said to her, not after falling apart when he’d moved away. Without any word, without any sign that he had cared about her at all and especially not after…not after… “Ben, why are you doing this?” Roxanne asked around the tightness in her throat.
“Weasley, I mean it. Just leave, all right? I should have figured that you would have thought something more was happening when it wasn’t.” Benjamin said and Roxanne felt a flood of misery, pain and hatred boil inside of her and the hot burn of tears threatened in the corners of her eyes. A stiff and very ugly silence seemed to thicken between them, “I can’t be with anyone. And especially not a Weasley,”
Roxanne said something but she wasn’t quite sure what it was but Benjamin’s eyes widened a little as she shakily slipped out of his bed. Her heart ached, and ached and she couldn’t see straight… “W-why did you…after we…” her clothes were scattered all over the floor and she sank onto her knees, desperate to get away, to leave and to wonder what she had done.
Why she had done it.
Benjamin let out a slew of curses and for a moment she heard his footsteps and shrank, wondering if he would come around and force her to her feet. “Like I kept saying since I went to go get you. I was in a bad mood and you just so happened to be what I needed to get my mind off of things.”
Roxanne heard the words as if from a great and terrible distance. Her mind was whirling, her heart was being crushed because some stupid part of her had hoped, hoped and dreamed that maybe they could be together and she felt like the biggest, dumbest fool. “….hate you,” she whispered.
“What?” Benjamin questioned, sounding bored with the turn of events. How many other girls had he done this to? How many other girls had slinked away from his bedroom with their own hopes crushed? And why had he done this to her?
The daisies he’d conjured for her all these years had meant nothing. The sweet, strange boy that had been by her side had vanished entirely… “Weasley, don’t make a scene. It’s embarrassing and it’s not going to get you anywhere with me.”
Roxanne felt herself shaking all the more as she stuffed herself into her clothes, feeling aches and pains that she wished hadn’t existed. It hurt to move but something was propelling her forward and across the expanse of the room— “So I was just a good…a good fuck then?” she didn’t know where the words were coming from but they were out before she could take them back.
Benjamin was silent for a long time, watching as she fought back oncoming sobs. Somehow she fought herself into her boots crossed towards the door, desperate to get away from this feeling and the horrible sense of betrayal and hurt, “Wait a minute Weasley.”
Hope flared in her chest and Roxanne, who had turned determinedly towards the door, slowly turned, a smile threatening to form. He was going to explain himself, he was going to talk to her…they were going to figure out what was wrong and this had never happened, “W-what?” she asked, hating how shaky her voice was.
Benjamin stared at her, a distant emotion lingering in his eyes. She wasn’t able to tear her face away from his and she traced every angle and line of him, this person that was the same and not the same, “You forgot something.” His tone was ice cold and her hopes scattered across the room like spun glass. Numbly, she watched as he reached down and picked up her discarded pink jacket, the tan of his fingers a noticeable contrast, “your jacket. Don’t you want it?”
Roxanne’s eyes widened and she felt a well of emotion threatening to explode out of her. She was so hurt, she was so everything in this one moment that she wasn’t sure how she managed to walk her way towards him, extend her hand…. “I hate you.”
“Now, don’t be immature, Weasley.” Benjamin said with a heavy sigh.
Roxanne said it louder. “I hate you! I fucking hate you!” Benjamin quirked a brow, though his skin paled drastically, “haven’t I meant anything to you at all? After all this time?! Why would you come to get me, why would you do this?! What have I done to you?!”
Benjamin was silent for a long few minutes and she thought that he wouldn’t answer, she thought that she would have the final word, the final victory but his lips turned up in a smile. It made her want to run, that smile but she stared into his eyes, trying to find the person that she had known, “Weasley, for the last time, stop thinking that you’re something special. You’re just a good fuck, a surprisingly good fuck but nothing else. Are you going to take your jacket or leave it for me as a souvenir?” he asked lightly, adding insult to injury by waving the fabric under her nose.
Roxanne reacted before she could bring herself to think more clearly, even though her mind was a jumble of mess and feelings that were tearing her apart. Snatching her jacket in one hand, she raised the other, threw her arm back and punched him as hard as she could in the face, blessedly connecting with his eye, “I hate you! I hate you! Don’t you ever speak to me again!”
“Bitch!” Benjamin hissed, stepping back and holding his eye with one hand. Her mother would be extremely proud of her, Roxanne knew but her temper was still flaring and she wanted to hex him, she wanted to curse him as hard as she could. She wanted to hold him, kiss him…be with him and the tumult of her emotions nearly made her sick—why had this happened?
What had she done? “I’m not a bitch, you’re a prat!” Roxanne screeched, trying to punch him again and only succeeding in landing a blow to his jaw. Benjamin fended her off easily, trying to subdue her but she was wildly incapable of being talked down, of hearing a rational thought, “Let me go!”
Benjamin was furious and she knew that she had crossed a line, a very thin, dangerous line and his grip on her arms, which he’d grabbed, tightened. Roxanne struggled, “Was that necessary?! Stop being a brat just because you haven’t gotten your way! Life doesn’t work like that Weasley! You can’t always get what you want!”
“I want you—I want you to let me go!” Roxanne clarified as his eyes widened, some emotion flaring in the depths before she managed to struggle free. He stepped back, eyeing her warily even as a bruise started to form around his eye, a nasty bruise that would probably turn colors in the next few days, “you’re a coward, you know that?”
Benjamin flinched visibly. “And you’re a brat. I don’t even know how you’ve managed to go this long without some horrible bloke fucking and leaving you,” the words stung and Roxanne kicked at him, barely landing a blow on his knee. There was a nasty crunch as leather met skin and she dodged away as he reached for her, looking mad with rage, “You’re not getting away with hitting me again!” he spat angrily. Roxanne glared at him, the hatred inside of her so palpable that she could have lit a fire, “get the hell out of here!”
Roxanne felt one large, traitorous tear leak from her eye and slide down her cheek and Benjamin’s face seemed to shadow with regret. Before he could say or do anything more, she was turning away, feeling the sobs working their way out of her throat with enough force to leave her dizzy and shaken.
Hating herself and hating him intensely for changing and using her so easily, she dashed for the door, opened it and ran into the shadowy corridor with her heart in pieces around her feet.
Erm, please be gentle. I know I'm terrible...but meanwhile, I'll be going back to Audrey and her Weasley! Uhm, look forward to that! D':
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