Chapter 9 : Visits with Stolen Kisses
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“What are you doing?” Rose said through slightly gritted teeth as she rolled over in her bed, facing away from the direction of her closet.
The person in the room didn’t say a word as they rifled through her stuff, seeming to find what they were looking for and throwing it on the bed “Time to wake up,”
Rose rubbed her eyes as she turned on her back, letting her vision adjust to the ceiling. “What time is it?” she asked, not exactly in the mood to hunt down her watch.
“Six,” the person said stonily from her bathroom, which was the only source of light that was coming into the room. Emerging with her tennis shoes in hand, they laid them on the ground. Noticing her lack of movement, he perched himself on the side of the bed and gave her a slight nudge.
“Matt,” she groaned, turning her head to face him, still rubbing her eyes. “You do realize that it is my birthday and the last thing I want to do is be up at six in the morning.”
“And you do realize that I am willingly here to talk to you and partially apologize for being a dick.” He stated.
Rose remained silent for a moment, “Give me ten minutes,” she said, sitting up and reaching for the jogging clothes that he had thrown to her.
They used to do it on a regular basis. Get up early on Saturday mornings and jog through Central Park with a group, then go get breakfast afterwards, it was their thing. Although if Rose was being honest, she had to admit that on that particular Saturday she had no desire to do much of anything.
Ever since that night in the hospital Scorpius had been avoiding her, which was putting her slightly on edge.
Thinking as she stretched out her muscles, her mind went to the morning after the hospital. Walking into the office, she smiled putting her coffee mug on her desk. “Good morning,” she said sweetly as always.
Scorpius remained hunched over in his chair, as he wrote something on his parchment. “Morning,” he mumbled not attempting to move.
Rose’s smile fell. He usually always had something to say, some sort of comment or question, but on that particular morning there was silence. “You sleep well?” she tried, taking her seat and pulling some papers out of her bag.
That time he didn’t even respond, he only continued to write. She wasn’t sure if she was confused by his action, or if she was only lying to herself about why he was acting like this, still she asked “Are you alright?”
Lifting his head suddenly, he looked to Rose as if he had just realized that she was there. “I’m fine,” he answered, his eyes stony and cold. “Are you?” he questioned his voice emotionless.
Rose’s chest tightened “I’m fine,” her voice slightly breathless.
Seeming to accept that answer Scorpius nodded his head politely, and looked back down “I’ve got work to do.”
Opening her mouth, she seemed to have something else to say as she stared at his figure. Instead she took a slow breath, and pulled her eyes away from him “Okay,” she managed to speak, before pulling her own work out.
He had been like that every day since, and that was a little over two weeks ago. It didn’t take long for Rose to understand that the friendship that they had sort of been developing before the case was over, and that if it wasn’t work related, Scorpius didn’t want anything to do with her.
A part of her knew that she deserved this, and it took everything she had not to show how much it killed her. Needless to say they never mentioned that night; the both of them pretending that nothing happened. Still just a few seconds of letting her feelings show and she could not shake the reminder. Little spurts of emotion kept seeping through and she would have to force herself to push them back.
Focusing her mind on the current task she began to run. Keeping pace with Matt, he hadn’t spoken much yet, but it felt as if nothing had changed. Every move she made he made, every time he’d change direction so would she, it was if they still were perfectly in sync.
After their run they went to their favorite dinner, sitting in the corner booth Rose watched as he diligently shook packets of sugar for his coffee “You are going to spill that everywhere.” Rose said.
“I am not,” Matt mocked, although he still let her take the packets and rip them open for him. “Thanks,” he mumbled while they both took an awkwardly long sip of coffee.
Both of them looking around to the slightly empty room while they waited for their food, “So…” Matt said, Rose raising her eyes to meet his.
“So...” she repeated waiting for his words to form.
“Why wouldn’t you tell me about your past you knew that I would have been the last person to judge you?” Matt watched as her eyes shifted down to the empty table.
She paused thinking for a moment “You must know that my intention was never to lie to you, and technically I didn’t lie.”
“Not telling is the same thing.” He grunted, as the waitress came up beside them placing their plates of food in front of them.
Covering up her delay in a response, she picked up her fork and dug into her hash browns. “Matt…” She thought for the right words “A lot of what happened in school is hard for me to think about, and a lot of it hurts.”
“And you think that it didn’t hurt for me to talk about my past?” he commented calmly.
Rose took another bite of her food, looking away from the hurt expression in his eyes “I truly am sorry if I hurt you.” Was all she could think to say.
Sighing Matt accepted it, even though it wasn’t what he wanted to hear “Can you promise me one thing?” he asked suddenly.
Rose looked up to him “What?”
“I know that you said you didn’t want to talk about it now, but can you at least promise me, that eventually will tell me about your past?”
“What part?” she reached for her coffee.
“All of it,” he stated bluntly. “Rose your my best friend and I trust you with my life, but just like you wanted to know all about my life growing up, I want to know about yours.”
“If I say yes, will you forgive me?”
Matt almost laughed “You really think I got up at the crack of dawn to not forgive you?”
Rose laughed, as she reached into her pocket. “Speaking of the past, I have something for you,” she said pulling out a thin envelope and handing it to him.
Matt looked shocked by the envelope “Why am I getting a present, it’s not my birthday.”
Smiling, she shook her head “No but I do understand that there is a bit of an unequal balance in our relationship, and I thought that I might try and level it out a bit.”
Becoming curious he opened the envelope only to quickly shut it “You’re joking.”
Shaking he head “Nope, that is four tickets to the Quidditch World Cup.”
“How did you get these, they have been sold out for months?” Matt asked, still stunned.
“I guess that is one of the many things that you will get to learn when you and Carla come to London with me.”
Matt noted the sneaky smile on her face “You were planning on bribing me weren’t you?”
Rose didn’t answer, but she did take a very large bite of her food to avoid having to. “Thank you,” he said softly, knowing of Rose’s unnatural hatred of the game.
“Don’t mention it,” she said.
Thinking he asked “When was the last time you went back to London?”
“Four years.” she stated quickly.
Rose had spent most of the day consumed with a book, grateful for the few hours to herself, before she was forced to go to the celebration that Carla had spent weeks organizing. It wasn’t that she didn’t want to go, but she just didn’t feel much like celebrating. She knew Scorpius wouldn’t be there, he could barely even look at her at work, so she highly doubted that he would go to a party that was revolved around her. With that being said, a small part of her kept some hope and even though she continuously told herself it wasn’t, that hope was why she put the book down and started getting ready.
Putting on a blush pink blouse and some jeans that were tucked inside her boots, she was about to leave only to have the daylights scared out of her when she opened the door.
“Miss me so much that you can sense when I arrive?”
“Albus you bastard.” She said with a wide smile, as she jumped into her cousin’s arms.
Laughing Albus put Rose down and said “Your friend Carla can be quite persistent on the exact time I should get here.”
Picking up on the duffle bag in his hand Rose smirked “How long do I get you for?” she asked moving out of the doorway for Albus to come in.
“A week,” said Albus
Rose scowled “When are you going to get off your stubborn arse and move here?” she asked walking over to the fridge and grabbing a bottle of water to levitate to him.
Taking the bottle Albus put his bag down “You know I can’t do that.”
Scrunching up her face “Speaking of which, how is our dear friend everything good in paradise?” she asked, taking a seat on a stool by the breakfast bar and facing him.
“Don’t get me started on what he wants now.” He groaned.
“Is it for you to quit being a coward, and finally tell the rest of the family that you’re gay.” She crossed her arms and eyed Albus up and down. It wasn’t at all a surprise when Albus had told her years ago that he fancied guys, she had pieced it together herself in school.
Albus could only stare Rose down, as she didn’t budge in her movement. “You’ve been talking to him haven’t you?”
“Some letters might have been exchanged.” She stated.
Albus gave a tight smile “Then you should be the first to understand that our family doesn’t take surprise relationships too well.”
Rose’s expression became blank, as she uncrossed her arms and began to fidget with her shirt. “That was different,”
“How so?” he argued.
“Because Albus this is who you are and in hiding it you are not being true to yourself.” She watched as he lowered his eyes only to get a devious look in them.
Albus suddenly raised his head and turned the tables on her “Your one to talk?” Seeing the, what’s that supposed to mean look in her eyes, Albus continued “I’m sorry but haven’t you told me before that you know without a doubt that you are meant to be with Malfoy.”
Rose’s eyes became wide with shock that he had just said that using a moment of weakness from five years ago against her. “I am pretty sure that I was very drunk when I said that.”
“And you’re telling me that you don’t feel that way,” Albus countered.
They both stared down each other with the same expression egging each other on as if it was a game. Rose was the first to move by jumping off the stool and walking towards the door “You know what don’t tell your parents see if I care when he decides to break up with you for someone who doesn’t want to keep him a secret.” she said in a joking way.
“Ha,” Albus laughed as he followed Rose out the door. “Isn’t that the cauldron calling the cat black?”
Rose walked into the bar with Albus beside her. The room was full of people and music, Carla held nothing back this year inviting everyone from the office even the weekend interns that she had never met. The only person who seemed to have not come was Scorpius and Rose couldn’t even begin to describe how that made her feel.
Carla ran to her with an excited expression “Happy birthday,” she said wrapping her arms tightly around Rose. Pulling away she still held Rose “What do you think?”
Hiding her disappointment “It’s perfect,”
“I’m so happy that you like it,” Carla said sweetly giving Rose another hug before she let go “You happy with your present?”
Looking to Albus she nodded “Oh I love my present.”
“Only because she is forced to,” Albus commented turning away and looking around the room.
“Well I have a night full of surprises so I’m going to go and make sure everything is going according to plan and I want you to have fun.” She pointed to Rose.
“I will,” she said weakly as Carla walked off.
Facing her eyes down to the wood floor she wasn’t sure why Scorpius not being there hurt so much. Maybe it was because it showed that he truly wanted nothing to do with her, or maybe it was because she had allowed herself to hope for it, but regardless of the reason it still hurt the same.
“Umm Rose,” she heard Albus say “What’s he doing here?”
Rose lifted her head looking in the same direction as Albus and she couldn’t help but smile. There standing in the corner was Scorpius and his eyes were fixed only on her and hers were only on him. Lightly biting her lip she couldn’t stop smiling “He came,” she whispered to herself.
“I can see that he came, what I am wondering is why?” Albus said beside her.
Quickly turning her head to Albus she gave a weak smile “We might need to talk.”
Albus whose eyebrows were raised and expression was unreadable said “Yeah I don’t think that the word might should be in that sentence.”
“What,” Rose said defensively, while Albus only stared her down after she had finished explaining the events of the past six weeks. A few people walked by and wished her a happy birthday while she waited.
Taking one long swig of his beer, he put the bottle down on the table that they were sitting at “So…” he said, trying to get the story straight. “He’s your temporary partner.”
“Yes,” She said taking a fast breath.
Albus gave a skeptical look to Rose. “What? Don’t look at me like that.” She scoffed.
Snickering he shook his head “Like what?”
“Like you know something that I don’t,” she stated.
“Oh no, I think you know exactly what I think.”
“If you think that I can’t resist Scorpius then you’re wrong.” She said sharply quickly looking away from Albus’ intense glare. Searching out into the crowed, past the dancing couples in the middle of the room she saw Scorpius as he laughed with a group of people from the office.
“Rose,” Albus said but he stopped noticing how she wasn’t listening and was unable to pull her eyes away from Scorpius. Laughing he nudged her foot to grab her attention “Really I’m wrong,”
Rose narrowed her eyes attempting to change the subject in a different direction “How come you’re not more upset than this? The last time you found out I had anything to do with him you punched him.”
“For starters I’m not a seventeen year old brat anymore.” Albus stated. “Now don’t get me wrong I will be the first to say that I am not a huge fan of Malfoy and there is very strong chance that I never will be.” He paused thinking “However I will admit that I also don’t know Malfoy and as you know that tends to make difference in a person’s perspective.”
Rolling her eyes “What the bloody hell is that supposed to mean.”
“It means that you have been there for me through so much, and if for whatever reason you wanted me to try and get to know him I would.” He said in a knowing way.
Rose sighed as she crossed her arms “Well thank you for your support, even though none is needed because nothing is going to happening between us.”
“Oh really,” he countered, grabbing his bottle giving her an all-knowing look, and cocking his eyebrow to Rose.
Turning her eyes away from Albus she could still feel his glare on her. “You are seriously about to become my least favorite cousin.”
“Yeah right Rose and who would replace me?”
“James is looking better and better,” She laughed about to look at Albus when something caught her eye. Now realistically this shouldn’t have bothered her at all but seeing Scorpius dancing with another girl and seeming to actually engage in a conversation with said girl made Rose grab the edge of the table in shock as she narrowed her eyes.
Albus taking another sip of his drink turned around to see what Rose was staring at only to laugh loudly. “Is somebody jealous?”
“Shut up,” Rose barked, standing up and walking in the direction of Scorpius.
“I’m wrong my arse.” Albus mumbled to himself.
“Mind if I cut in?” Rose asked interrupting the girl who seemed to be in the middle of a statement. The blond girl turned her head and gave a curt smile at Rose, looking to Scorpius with hope that he would say no.
Scorpius was more shocked by the statement and to the other girl’s dismay he nodded to Rose.
They were silent as she let him wrap his arm around her back clutching her other hand tightly they moved to the corner of the dance floor where only someone looking for them would find them. Still a safe distance apart from one another, she looked up to him as his eyes were awkwardly fixed on the wall behind her.
“I don’t like not talking to you.” She said softly.
Scorpius took a slow breath as he still looked ahead of her, “You spent six years not talking to me I’m not sure why now would bother you.”
Rose stopped moving her feet which forced Scorpius to actually look down to her. “You know what I mean.” She stated sharply.
Seeming nervous that she was going to walk away he gripped a hold of her back tighter, he pulled her closer to his body. Scorpius nodded knowing what he was doing to her, leaning his head in he whispered in to her ear “I don’t mean to hurt you.”
She wanted to argue back that he wasn’t hurting her but he would see right through it so looking away awkwardly with her peripheral vision she asked “Then why do you do it?” Knowing that is was an unfair question to ask.
Scorpius sighed while he rubbing her forearm gently, causing Rose to look into his eyes only to regret it “It’s not easy for me to always watch you run away from what we have.”
“What we had,” she corrected.
“No,” he said firmly in a voice not meant to be argued with “From what we have.”
Rose gave one nod, one understanding nod. Holding onto his neck she released a long breath not sure how to respond. “I’m sorry that I can’t give you what you want.”
Shaking his head Scorpius was becoming frustrated “I swear you make a habit of breaking my heart Rose,”
She tried to look away but the look in his eyes wouldn’t let her “And how am I breaking your heart now by telling you what you already know?”
Scorpius closed his eyes as he leaned his head in to hers his cheek pressed against her skin, his hand refusing to let go of hers “Because I know that you can, you just won’t let yourself be with me.” He whispered feeling as her body froze under his hold from his truth.
He continued to push her to move slightly as he slid his cheek softly along hers, his breathing the only thing holding her up and steady “And can you honestly tell me that you want to go through everything with our families all over again?” She managed to ask weakly.
Pulling his head away from hers he looked at her “I never wanted to stop,” His words so full of truth that they cut right through her. She searched his eyes for the slightest bit of doubt but there was none. Neither one of them even pretended to dance anymore both reaming at a standstill in the corner, completely unnoticed.
She could see his lips coming closer to hers, feel as her heart raced, wanting more than anything to pull him toward her and give into him. To make him hers again and not care what anyone thought, but the moment couldn’t last as Carla called her name forcing her to turn away from him.
Choking back the lump in her throat she gave a weak smile as Carla came up beside her. “I have a surprise for you,” she said excitedly grabbing Rose by the hand.
Scorpius quickly straightening his posture as he watched Rose be taken away from him. Careful to hide his disappointment he stayed still as his eyes followed the crowed to the entrance of the room.
“What is it?” Rose asked not sure if she could handle any more surprises tonight especially after what had just happened or almost happened with Scorpius, her emotional roller-coaster had taken its toll and she was ready to go home.
Carla beamed as she nodded to the doors and Rose was shocked by who walked though. “Rex,” she said breathlessly her eyes wide.
His dark hair and sun tanned skin making him seem more attractive than before Rose was speechless as she felt the man grabbed a hold of her and kiss her like he had so many times before. Not knowing of any indifference that Rose might have.
Scorpius stayed in the corner of the room feeling as his became rigid and cold as he watched someone else steel his kiss and as she kissed him back.
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