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Chapter 6 : When The Lessons Begin
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It was the afternoon of Lily’s first tutoring session with Scorpius, and she took the short trip from the Slytherin common room to the Potions dungeon. That was one of the best things about being in Slytherin—her proximity to the location of her best and favorite class.
She got there a few minutes early to set up only to find Scorpius already having done so, and waiting patiently for her. This surprised her, because knowing what she did about him, she had expected him to be late.
When he caught sight of her, he gave Lily the smirk he reserved especially for her.
“Well, are you as excited as I am for these lessons?” he asked sarcastically. Lily rolled her eyes.
“You know, Malfoy, I am doing this out of the kindness of my heart. I can call it quits whenever I want. And since it’s you that needs my help, I would be a little nicer to me if I were you.”
“No need for the attitude, Potter. I don’t want to be here any more than you do, but seeing as you’re the best potion maker in this school and I need help now that I’m in a NEWT level class, I don’t see any alternative.”
Lily froze. Did he just compliment her? He had never admitted that she was good at anything, let alone say that she was the best in the school. She shook her head, put his statement in the back of her mind to examine later, and gathered herself.
“Okay, fine. What exactly do you need help with?” she asked. When she had talked to Professor Greengrass, the teacher had not specified what level Scorpius was at.
“We’ve been working on appearance-altering potions. You know, like the Polyjuice Potion. Since I want to become an auror, potions like that are essential for me to know because they are on the tests.”
“I didn’t know you wanted to be an auror,” said Lily. A sudden thought occurred to her: if he became an auror, he would be working for her father.
“Well, yeah,” he said sheepishly.
“Okay, well the first thing you need to know about the Polyjuice Potion, and many other NEWT level potions, is that they take time to brew. You won’t be able to make a lot of potions in just one period.”
“How do you know? You are only a fourth year! Don’t tell me you’re tackling potions that complicated.”
“Actually, I do in my spare time. Sometimes I sneak in here and brew potions I’m not supposed to. I just get so bored with the potions I’m supposed to be brewing for my grade level.”
“Wow, I never knew you were so mischievous,” he said, “I knew you were no saint, but I always thought you were a bit more of a goody-two-shoes than the rest of us Slytherins.”
“Won’t you get over the fact that I’m in Slytherin?” she snapped. She was tired of him always making comments about how she was not a true Slytherin.
“Trust me, I’ve more than gotten over it. But enough talk, tell me more about this potion,” he said, leaning over the cauldron.
As the lesson progressed, Lily noticed that he seemed to know the answers, but let her tell him the answers anyways. In fact, even though she was only giving instructions and not actually helping him with his potion, it was pretty good for someone who was supposedly awful at this. His roots were evenly cut, he added ingredients at precisely correct moment, and he carefully kept watch over the temperature at which his potion was brewing.
“I have to say, I expected you to be a lot worse at this,” said Lily suspiciously.
“Well, I guess you’re just a lot better teacher than you thought,” he replied. She was surprised that there was not a hint of sarcasm in his voice.
“If I didn’t know any better, Malfoy, I would say you’re being nice to me.”
“Times have changed, I suppose. I’m no longer an immature little third year, you know,” said Scorpius.
The rest of the lesson went by quickly. Lily found herself actually enjoying her rival’s company. When it was time to clean up and leave, she turned to him and saw that he was smiling at her.
“What are you smiling at?” she asked.
“Thanks for agreeing to do this. You could have said no, you know.”
“Well, your aunt said you really needed my help,” she replied sheepishly.
“When can we do another lesson?”
“Um, I guess we could do one next week?” she suggested.
“Sounds good. See you next week!” he said, and left the dungeon.
Lily stood rooted to the ground for a good five minutes after he left. Not a single insult? she thought. No snide remarks? He didn’t even call me Potter!
She finally shook away these confusing thoughts, packed her things and left for the common room. When she got back and no one was in the common room, she checked her watch and saw that it was close to midnight. She didn’t realize how late it was, and decided to go to bed rather than work on homework as she had been planning to do.
Upon entering her room, she found her roommates once again sitting in a circle on the floor. They had obviously been waiting for her to get back.
“How was it?” asked June eagerly.
“Weird. He wasn’t his usual jerk-face self,” said Lily.
“Well that’s because he has a crush on you,” said Mia matter-of-factly.
“You guys are so wrong. I’m tired, so if you don’t mind, I’m going to go to bed,” snapped Lily. She was tired of these insane accusations. She changed into her pyjamas and got into bed, but she could still hear the others whispering about boys. When did they become so wrapped up in such a boring topic? she though before drifting off to sleep.
The next morning, Lily woke up early and went to breakfast by herself. She was still annoyed with her friends for their comments last night, and she just wanted to be alone for a while to process her lesson with Scorpius. He really did seem nicer, which was confusing her to no end.
As she sat eating her breakfast, someone sat down next to her. Expecting it to be June or one of the others, she looked up and glared at the person, only to find Tom raising her eyebrows at her.
“What’s that look for?” he asked with a laugh. He was used to his friend being somewhat temperamental in the mornings.
“Oh, sorry Tom. I didn’t realize it was you, I thought it was one of your mental sisters or those two other people we call friends.”
“What did they do this time?”
“They have some crazy idea that Scorpius Malfoy has a crush on me. Can you believe that? Tell me they’re completely off base,” begged Lily.
Instead of laughing or agreeing with her as Lily had hoped, Tom got a hard look on his face. He looked at her as if considering telling her something, then blushed and turned back to his porriage. Lily could tell something was off.
“What is it, Tom? You know you can tell me anything,” she said.
He looked at her again, this time with a kind look in his eyes. He took a deep breath and began.
“Lily, you can’t go out with Scorpius. I know he’s attractive and all, but he’s a jerk and he doesn’t deserve someone as brilliant as you. You’re so kind, helpful, smart, and an all around amazing, strong person. Please promise me you’ll wait for someone who truly deserves you.”
“Tom, I never said anything about liking him back. Even if that boy came in here right now and confessed his undying love for me, I would not consider him. I promise I’ll wait,” said Lily. Then she remembered what Mia and Natalie had said about Tom liking her. “Is there something else?” she asked.
He blushed yet again and took another deep breath, gathering his confidence. “Yes, actually. I was wondering if you wanted to go with me to the next Hogsmeade trip?”
“Tom, we always go together. You, me, your sisters, June and Kendra.”
“Well, I was thinking it could just be the two of us, like,” he gulped, “like… a date?”
Lily smiled at him. Truthfully, she had been partially expecting this for a while. Mia and Natalie really opened her eyes to the fact that Tom was obviously crazy about her.
“I would love to. The next trip isn’t for a few weekends, though,” she noticed.
“I know, but I figured I would ask you before Sco—I mean, someone else, asked you,” he said nervously. Lily knew he was about to say “Scorpius”.
“It was a nice thought, Tom, but if anyone else asked me I would probably say no. I would rather go with you,” she said. This obviously made Tom very happy, as he broke out into a grin that stayed on his face for the rest of the meal.
When Lily’s roommates walked in and saw him grinning, they gave him strange looks and turned to Lily for an explanation. She gave them a look that clearly said, “I’ll tell you later”.
On the way to Herbology after breakfast, Lily told June what had happened (once Tom was out of earshot).
“It’s about bloody time,” said June loudly. Lily shushed her and stole a glance at Tom, who was a few yards ahead. He didn’t seem to notice June’s comment, so June said a little louder, “looks like our friend Tom has finally found the balls to ask Lily out.”
This time, all the fourth year Slytherins and Ravenclaws heard her. Most of the girls looked at Tom proudly, and a lot of the boys gave him looks of mixed jealously and admiration. Did everyone know about this crush? thought Lily.
The news that Tom Kent had finally asked out Lily Potter spread through the school like wildfire. Half seemed to be impressed that he finally found the courage, and half seemed upset that the most attractive fourth year was officially off the market. One person became rather irate upon hearing the news.
“Potter!” Lily heard someone call her name as she walked into the Great Hall for dinner that night. She turned around to see Scorpius walking over to her with an angry smirk on his face.
“So, word in the corridor is that you have found yourself a new boy-toy,” he said angrily. So much for his new friendly persona.
“Not that it’s any of your business, but yes. Tom asked me to Hogsmeade this morning and I said yes,” she replied politely, “in fact, I’m surprised you’re surprised. Didn’t you call this during our first feast?”
“Well, I assumed you two losers would end up together eventually,” he said. She could hear the anger in her voice, but also something else. Pain? Jealousy?
“You were right. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go eat dinner with my friends and boyfriend,” said Lily.
“Fine. But just so you know, I don’t think I’ll be needing any more help with potions. Seems you were just such a good tutor that I am back up to scratch,” he said sarcastically. With that, he walked around her and entered the hall for dinner.
She turned into the Hall and made her way over to Tom, who was grinning again at the sight of her.
When she sat down next to him, her head was spinning with thoughts about her encounter with Scorpius. He really didn’t seem like he needed her help last night during their session, and now he was telling her he didn’t need her help anymore. Now that she was dating someone.
Maybe her friends weren’t so off base about his feelings for her…
A/N: So here is the version of Scorpius that I like. You see him many more times throughout the story, but right now he just has to be jealous angry Scorpius.
Bye for now! Hopefully the Queue Gods will be kind and validate the next chapter soon :)
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