Chapter 18 : Eighteen
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“How?” Alvie sighs, staring down at the picture of our baby. She hasn’t stopped looking at it since we left the hospital after hearing everything looked fine with Alvie and the baby. I’m not sure when it became ‘our baby’ but I guess I should stop referring to it as that, seen as in a while it wont be, or maybe it never was.
“Does it matter? All I’m saying is that they’re going to find out sooner or later. You just need to bite the bullet. Get it over with.” I give her a gentle smile in the dim of the corridor. For a while the echo of our footsteps is the only response I get.
“I just don’t understand how I just say something like that. You know? Like,” She shakes her head, “do I just say, ‘Hey guys! Surprise! I’m pregnant. Oh yeah, with James’s baby, sorry Al.’ Bit harsh don’t you think?” Alvie turns to me; I can’t imagine how she’s feeling right now.
“You’re just going to have to say it. And Albus will understand, shit happens; he’ll get over it. He’ll be just as supportive as I’m sure Dom will be.” I smile. Dom will be bloody overjoyed. “But maybe we wait until the weekend or something. Everyone will have killer hangovers tomorrow, including me, so I guess we should just call it a night and get to bed.” She nods and we enter the common room and drag ourselves up the stairs. All the while I’m wishing I could climb up the stairs to the boys dorm and into Orion’s arms to let him comfort me after what a rough night I’ve had, comfort me about the baby and about everything that is to follow. But then again, he’s what caused the majority of my night to be rough. I decide instantly that I need to stop feeling sorry for myself because Alvie and the baby need me, obviously more than Orion does, or did.
“If I was a cow they’d shoot me in the face.”
“You already are a cow.” Alvie laughs at Dom.
“Hilarious. Seriously, Al, you must be revelling in this, watching your friends suffer!” Dom groans and flops back down on my bed, I push her back into a sitting position.
“Dommie, you need to get up and get ready so you can go to breakfast.”
“I don’t want to!”
“You have to.”
“Why? You’re not planning on moving.” She states, and I don’t. I’ve had next to no sleep and I have a hangover from hell. Damn straight I’m staying in bed. Oh, and I’m emotionally wounded because my boyfriend kissed another girl, but hey, that’s not bothering me at all.
I just stare at her and kind of loath that she still looks fucking stunning despite everything. Fucking part-veela bitch.
“Is this about last night?” She says and I stare at her a little more, like she deserves a medal for working that one out. Alvie appears at the end of my bed and sits down.
“Where are the others?” I ask, desperately trying to change the subject.
“Oh, Cassie. You must be heartbroken.” Dom continues regardless. Heartbroken? Really? Am I? Has this hurt me so much that I could be classified as ‘heartbroken’? Hm, I don’t know. I am pretty gutted.
I shrug in response and begin to fiddle with the bed sheets, this is too uncomfortable for me, I don’t do heartbroken, Dom does heartbroken. “I’m alright.”
“Are you sure? I bet you still feel super guilty for sleeping with James last night too.” She gives me a sympathetic look. I’d love to know how she’s not fazed at all by this. James is her bloody cousin and she’s acting like she doesn’t know him and wont thinking about what we’ve done every time she’s in a room with him. Or maybe she won’t, maybe I’ll do that. Oh fucking hell. What have I done?
I look to Alvie and she seems more than fazed. Her face is just blank, like she’s raging inside but doesn’t want to show it.
“You slept with James?”
“I didn’t mean to.” I put my head down, “I was drunk and upset and he was there. I’m so sorry.”
“You’ve nothing to be sorry about, we understand, don’t we Alvie?”
“Yeah, sure, I mean, whenever I’m upset I just fuck the guy my best friends fancied forever.” She shouts, then tears spring to her eyes and Dom flinches. “Why would you do that, Cassie? You fucking knew. Like you’ve got to take everything from me, like everyone has to love you.” I’m confused but I don’t interrupt. “You knew I liked James. And Albus too, I mean, I didn’t like him but he liked me, he still does and you had to try to ruin that too. Albus told me you slept with him. Can it not be ok for someone to like me, Cassie? Don’t you think it’s nice for me? And then with this baby, I just don’t know how you’re going to handle it. You’re going to try to take this from me too?” She puts her face in her hands and I stare at her, wide eyed.
Well… Dom was going to find out sometime.
“Wait, what?” Dom’s brows furrow so hard I fear she may never have two separate eyebrows again.
“I’m pregnant. Fucking hell, Dom.”
“AND NO ONE TOLD ME?” Dom shouts now, apparently angrier than Alvie had been twenty seconds pervious.
“Well it’s not as if you’re the only one that doesn’t know…” I mutter.
“THIS WHOLE TIME! WHEN YOU WERE IN THE HOSPITAL? OH MY FUCKING GOD!”
“Dom, calm down, ok. My heads hurting and you’re shouting and Alvie’s upset, ok.”
“I KNEW IT!” She then starts to beam at us. What is it will mood swings around here? Jesus. “I told James that’s why Albus was talking to you when you were in hospital. No wonder you two have been spending so much time together! Does he know? Oh, he must. Alvie! Why didn’t you tell me?” Predictably, Dom is thrilled.
“Dom, could you shut up for a minute, please?” Alvie breathes. “It’s not Albus’, ok. It’s James’.”
“YOU’VE SLEPT WITH HIM TOO? WHEN! WHY WASN’T I INFORMED OF THIS? WHY AREN’T YOU GETTING MARRIED?” She turns to me, livid, once again, “WHY DID YOU SLEEP WITH HIM WHEN YOU KNEW SHE WAS IN LOVE WITH HIM AND PREGNANT WITH HIS CHILD?” I recoil a little; scared I might be on my way to a beating.
“SHUT UP!” Alvie shouts, I stare between the two, what has happened to my best friends? Who are these people? “Look, it’s probably for the best, James and I,” She sighs, “we were never going to work, ok? He doesn’t,” deep breath, “he doesn’t care. Not like I do. He’ll be there for the baby but there’s never going to be an ‘us’.” Alvie explains. “Don’t tell Albus. I need to tell him myself.”
After that we’re all silent for a few minutes. None of us really knows what to say and I guess Dom is trying to stay calm and not dance around the room. Alvie’s probably worried sick and I’m feeling weighed down by a massive guilt pertaining to having slept with James and also have kissed him when I knew I shouldn’t have. I guess I should have seen this shit storm coming given Karma probably wasn’t in my favour.
I stick to my plan and stay in bed pretty much all day, apart from moving to vomit. Alvie goes to her classes, despite being so exhausted that she falls asleep in two of them. I really need to stop skipping classes, but I deserved it today.
“You’re the talk of the halls.” Raven says when she sweeps into the room.
“I am?” I moan.
“Indeed.” She drops onto my bed. “Got you a present.” She rifles through her bag and throws some parchment at me.
“Fuck off.” I say, when I see that it’s a question I need to answer in essay form for transfig.
She shrugs, “So, that was a total dick move on Orion’s part.” No shit, “Also heard something about you and James.”
“Well that’s great.”
“People will have forgotten about it in two days.” The dorm door opens and Saffi and Char run in and dive straight on my bed.
“OH MY GOD! I heard that you slept with James and that you’re with him now but Orion wants you back.”
“Oh, I don’t erm, I don’t kno- HE WHAT?”
“He’s pretty torn up about it, wants you back.”
“Well he should have thought of that before he kissed another girl.” I roll over and bury my face in the pillow, hoping I’ll pass out, just to end this conversation. He still wants me. I can’t help the little leap my heart does.
“Just gone up to talk to Albus.” Saffi shrugs, standing from my bed and straightening her blouse.
“Why?” She shrugs. I leap out of my bed and run to the bottom of the stairs, awaiting her return from the boys dorm. The three girls follow, curious about why I’ve run down here.
“What’re you waiting for?”
“Why don’t you just go up there?”
“They’re talking, I’ll wait here.” I say and they regard me with worried, curious looks. We wait for a few minutes before we hear any noise at all. And it’s not a comforting noise. It sounds like a clatter, like things are being thrown. Then there’s stomping and the sound of someone’s thundering footsteps down the staircase. I see a pair of black pointed school shoes and follow them up a pair of long black trouser clad legs, to a torso I know is toned that’s currently covered in a grey jumper with a Slytherin tie, and up to his face which is absolutely raging. He looks like he might kill me.
“YOU FUCKING KNEW! IS THIS SOME BIG GAME FOR YOU? STANDING THERE WAITING? GET OUT OF THE WAY, CASSIE!” He shouts at me and the girls scatter, I stand my ground though. Who is he to talk to me like that?
“Albus, I’m sorry.”
“Oh, please, you’re not sorry.”
“What? You’re acting like this is my fault!”
“It’s not but you’re not helping!”
“What do you honestly want me to do, Albus?!” I almost say ‘I didn’t sleep with James!’ then I realise I did. And how bad this really seems if you don’t know they didn’t actually sleep together.
“Let her be with James. You’ve fucking ruined everything. At least let her be happy with him because Merlin knows she can’t be happy with me now!”
“I didn’t mean for this to happen Al! It’s not as if I had sex with her!”
“She never wanted me, did she?”
“No.” I answer honestly. Because I don’t think she ever did. But as soon as he sighs and storms past me, Alvie appears, red eyed and crying, making me think, does she care? Even if she says she doesn’t?
“I take it he took it well then.”
“I can’t deal with your sarcasm right now, Cassie.” She sobs and pushes past me, and up the others stairs where the girls follow her to find out what’s happened.
“She told him its James’ then.” I hear a soft voice behind me. I don’t answer him. “Please don’t ignore me, Shrug.” I shudder at the nickname. “Please, could you let me explain, I never wanted to hurt you.”
“No, you just wanted to kiss another girl, right?”
“Can’t we just say we’re even? Start again. Forget that I did that and that you slept with James.” I actually laugh at that. Is he for fucking real?
“No, I think we could-”
“Could what? Get back together? Be happy again? Yeah, so you can go off and kiss another girl, just when I think that. Just when I was,” I can’t say I was falling in love with him. I don’t even know if it’s true. With a shake of my head I push past him and leave the common room and go to find James instead.
“Hey, Mason, you seen James?” I ask when I see him in the corridor; he’s walking to the library to meet Dom.
“In the common room with Izzy.” I smile at him and continue walking to the Gryff common, all the while trying to think up reasons he could have for meeting with her, other than to cheat on me. Is it cheating if we’re not technically together? I guess I didn’t count it as cheating.
Dom had told me the password so I slip in and notice them talking, him on a chair and her on a couch. I don’t mean to eavesdrop but… ok I do.
“Thank you so much!”
She giggles and fiddles with her hair, “It’s really nothing, Jamie.”
“You don’t know how much this means, I can’t thank you enough.”
She begins to lean towards him like she might kiss him, but he sits back in his seat instead of leaning forward like he had been. I take this as my cue to enter, who the fuck does this bitch think she is?
“Hi.” I squeak. “Oh, Izzy! Nice to see you with your clothes on.” I can’t help myself. She jumps up from her seat and offers me a fake laugh, “Yes, sorry about that,” She laughs again and looks at James then at me, “I’ll just be off, I’ll see you for prefect duties on Tuesday, James.” She smiles and practically runs out of the common room.
“What’d she want?” I ask, plopping myself down on his lap to banish any thoughts she might have instilled in his brain about her.
“Just said she’ll change my prefect schedule so I’m not with Gemma anymore.” He smiles and kisses my forehead.
I guess that would make sense. Then it wouldn’t be conflicting with quidditch and our tutor sessions. “So, Alvie told Albus and Dom.”
“She did? How’d they take it?” He starts to play with my hair, probably putting knots in it.
“Dom was ecstatic, as you can imagine and Al was furious. She’s said it’s yours by the way.”
“Oh.” He sounds less enthusiastic.
“You’re not happy?”
He shrugs, “I guess so, I just don’t want it to complicate anything with us.”
“It won’t.” I assure him. I contemplate telling him about the trouble we had last night but I don’t want to make him awkward. So I pull my copy of the scan from my hoodie pocket and hold it out in front of us.
“There’s your baby, James.” I don’t fight the smile off my lips and look up at him to see his reaction. He looks at is like he’s looking at a potato. No emotion, he smiles at me like he thinks that’s what I want to see. I mean, it is, of course, but I’d hoped it’d have been less forced.
“Yeah, it looks like a peanut.” Then shrugs.
“That’s it? I can’t believe you! That’s our baby! Our son or daughter, James!”
“Calm down, Cass. I know it is and I’m excited, this is just a lot for me to take in, ok? I hadn’t exactly planned this.”
I scoff, “Because I’d totally planned this.” I roll my eyes and shove the photo back in my pocket.
“Hey,” He strokes my brow, making it straighten out, I’m still mad at him. “I just need time to…” He takes a deep breath and pulls the photo out of my pocket, “adjust.” His arm curls around me and strokes my stomach, “I think sometimes you forget that it’s Alvie’s baby. I know this is hard for you.” My eyes fill, he’s right, I do forget, especially with him stroking my none-pregnant fucking stomach. “It’s hard for me too, I wish this was normal, that it was just you and me, but it’s not, it’s never going to be.”
“James, stop it.” I don’t want to be hearing this. Christ, I’ve had a horrible night and he’s not doing anything to make me feel better.
“Cass, you just need to hear it.”
“I don’t want to hear it. Not yet.” I rub my thumb gently over the scan and bite my lip to stop myself from sobbing completely.
“Ok.” He says, and holds me to his chest.
Albus had shut himself off, he wouldn’t even look at Alvie, James or I and he certainly didn’t go to practice. I knew he’d come round sooner or later, at least I assumed he would, so this didn’t bother me too much. But it bothered James and definitely Alvie.
“He’s being a total arse about it. Good job it isn’t his, he’s so childish.” James complains about his younger brother while we’re eating breakfast.
“Hm.” I agree absentmindedly, playing with the porridge in my bowl, staring over at the Slytherin table where Albus and Orion sit.
“Seriously, couldn’t look after a slug.” James says while chewing so much food I almost don’t hear what he says.
“He could.” Alvie argues, sitting on James’ other side looking over to the table too.
James scoffs and starts to talk again but I can’t cope with seeing the food fly out of his mouth so I say, “James. Lips.” So he’ll shut them. He does so obediently.
“Morning all!” Freddie bounds over. “James, Cass, Mama.” He nods at us all. I think Alvie was trying to keep it low key about the baby, but it was going to come out soon enough. It only took one person to spill the beans. People look at her like she’s a spectacle or a mystical beast, and they all sort of glare at me, given I’m whatever I am with James and all the girls are pretty pissy about it.
“He’s really upset.” Dom says, flopping down next to Freddie, Mason on her other side.
“He’s not the only one. There’s no need to act like this about it.” James doesn’t sound particularly happy; I place a hand on his thigh and clear my throat.
“Well, there is, I mean you slept with the girl he had a crush on forever. Its hardly fair.” I thank Merlin that Alvie can’t see me because I know she’d be glaring at me. What Freddie says is just further clarification of how much of a bitch I’ve been.
I catch Raven’s eye from the Slytherin table and she nods her head towards to door and I nod back at her. “Right, I’m off to transfig.” I stand up and squeeze James’ shoulder, hoping to get away without any PDA, but he has other ideas.
When I finally prise my lips from his I can feel the burn of someone’s gaze on me, Orion looks upset. But that’s his fault. I swallow down any feelings I might have for him and leave the hall with Raven.
“Miller isn’t happy.” I shrug like I couldn’t care less, “He’s still hung up on you, Cass.”
“What do you want me to do about it?” Why does everyone feel bad for him? He’s done the worst thing imaginable in a relationship.
“Talk to him.” She says softly.
“Why should I?” I ask as we enter the transfig classroom and take our seats.
“Because he’s got things to say to you.”
“Well I don’t care what he has to say.” I lie. I want him to fight for me, to want me back. Because then maybe I wont feel so bad for wanting him back too.
“Quills out! We’re having a test!” McGonagall shouts as she enters the room. I groan, loudly. “Stop that, Malfoy. Your mother practically cheered when I announced tests.”
“Shame I’m not my mother, isn’t it?” I mutter.
She stops, fiddles with the tight bun on top of her head and looks at me, “I need to talk to you after class.”
“Look, I know my grades haven’t been brilliant but I promise I’m trying really hard this year!” I make excuses because I already know I’ve failed that test.
“Sit down, Malfoy.” She shakes her head at me. I raise a brow at her and sit down. She flits about the room and doesn’t talk to me so I sit impatiently before the door creeks open and Alvie stumbles in nervously.
“Ah, Miss. Zabini. Sit?” She gestures to the seat next to mine and suddenly it all clicks into place. McGonagall sits on her desk and crosses her ankles. “I assume you’ve guessed why you’re here?”
“Not about my grades, clearly.”
“No, Malfoy, it is not.” Why don’t I get ‘Miss’? God, talk about favouritism.
“About the erm,” Alvie blinks at the floor before she mutters, “baby.”
“Yes.” She draws it out, kind of like a snake.
“I’ll be informing your parents today.”
“Ok.” Alvie sounds like an injured bird; I’ve never heard her sound like this.
“And the father, does he know?”
“Yes.” Alvie sounds like she’s running on autopilot.
“Who is he, may I ask? I’d need to inform his parents also and I assume this shouldn’t be an issue given he is aware.”
“It’s erm,” Alvie swallows, like this is hard for her, “James Potter.” She looks at me and I feel guilt wash over me, I mean, it’s not like James and I are anything. Ok, maybe we are. We haven’t formally confirmed anything but I guess the PDA says it all, really. Not to mention James trying to hold my hand 24/7 and pushing aside every other girl and referring to me as his girlfriend. Other than that I wouldn’t say we’re official…
“Oh.” McGonagall’s eyes go wide like she hadn’t expected that. She gives me a curious look. “Malfoy, I heard just this morning that you and Mr. Potter were,” She looks like she doesn’t know how to word this and glances cautiously at Alvie who isn’t paying attention anymore, “dating?”
She clears her throat before this gets anymore embarrassing for us all, “Never mind. Just gossip, you know what this schools like. Talk circulates faster than, well, I don’t know what. How are you feeling, Alvera?” she changes the subject hastily.
“Fine.” Alvie mutters again. McGonagall looks at me questioningly.
“She’s a little upset.” I feel like the truth just spills out of me. “But she’s fine.”
“Good. Should I assume you’re considering keeping the baby?”
“Yes!” We both answer, or rather shout, which sort of takes her off guard.
She sighs, “Just like your bloody mothers.” She smiles gently while she shakes her head. “Go on, get out of here. I just thought I’d better tell you so you don’t get a shock when your mother and father send you a howler.” She rolls her eyes. “And you,” She points a long bony finger at me, “start doing your bloody work, and if you miss one more lesson, I’ll be in touch with your parents too.” There it is. Knew that was coming. “And keep an eye on her.” She nods at a demure looking Alvie who doesn’t even seem aware of our presence.
She stays that way for most of the day. I mean even when we get back to the dorm after our last class she seems subdued, I don’t try to make her talk about anything. Jesus, I would be catatonic if I was in her position, especially if my dad was Blaise Zabini.
Obviously this news won’t come as much of a shock to Pansy, but I hope she acts surprised because if not I’ll be in even more shit with Alvie than I already am.
Alvie goes into the bathroom and shuts the door behind her not having said a word. I enjoy the silence for a few seconds before I hear a buzzing from my draw.
My heart leaps into my throat as I ease it open gently. I pick the mirror out carefully and force a fake smile onto my face as I look at my mum and dad who looks less than pleased.
“Hiiiii.” I grimace sitting down on my bed.
“Don’t you ‘hiiii’ us, Cassiopeia!” Dad says shaking his head. I’m not entirely sure what I’ve done. I’m not the pregnant one! “Pansy told us.”
“Told you what?” What the fuck as she told them?!
“About Alvie.” Mum says softly giving me a soft smile.
“And about James!” Dad growls.
“What’s this got to do with me?” I raise a brow at them.
“Pansy told us it’s James’ baby, but also, as far as McGonagall is aware, that you’re dating him.” What right did she have to tell her that?!
“When did this happen? And what happened to that other lad? I liked him a lot better. He wasn’t going about knocking my daughters friends up.” Dad says menacingly. Right now having Blaise as a dad doesn’t sound so bad.
“Dad.” I swallow, ignoring the mere idea of Orion had been bloody lovely all day and there it is, smack bang, right in the centre of my thoughts again. “Look, it doesn’t matter. We didn’t work out.”
“Why? What happened? Not that I’m not pleased, he was cocky and annoying. But I can’t condone you dating James when your best friend has been in love with him forever and is now pregnant with his baby.” Dad says shaking his head. “Not cool, Cass, not cool.”
“Dad, look, you don’t understand.” I shake my head.
“I thought more of you, Cassie.” He sighs and leaves the room, ignoring my mum who calls after him.
“He’s just upset, ignore him, Cass.” I take a deep breath and nod. “Now, do you want to tell me what’s happened?”
“That’s not what I wanted to hear, Cassiopeia.” Fucking hell.
“CASSIE!!!!” I hear someone shout and tilt my head.
“Is that Aunt Ginny?”
Mum groans, “Yes.” She rolls her eyes and the redhead appears on the couch beside my mum. Brilliant.
“Well isn’t this odd? Always thought you’d be the one having babies with my son, but maybe the way things are going you might be soon enough!” I stare at her awkwardly. She seems to have taken this… well. And as for having babies with James, she doesn’t know how right she is.
“And she’s had how much firewhiskey?” I ask my mum who rubs a hand over her face.
“Too fucking much.” She grinds her teeth pushing aunt Ginny up from where she’d been leaning against her.
“Not happy with you!” I hear another voice and Pansy pops up on my mothers other side.
“What is this? A fucking mothers meeting?”
“Language!” Mum groans again, sounding irritated with everything, especially her two mental mates either side of her.
“What? You said it!”
“That’s not the point.”
“Oi! I’m trying to be stern!” Pansy says. “She’s your best friend.” She looks more upset than angry. “She’s your pregnant best friend.”
“MY SON! My little Jamie!” Ginny slurs leaning against my mum again. “Remember when this was you and Draco with the twins? Ah, good times.”
“Why? Come on, Cass, even Harry knew she fancied James and he doesn’t know shit about anything!”
“Yup. Haven’t even told him his son’s going to be a father yet.” Ginny slurs again.
The bathroom door creeks open and Alvie pads out in her slouchies with her hair tied up and her makeup off.
“Want to talk to three angry mothers?” I ask Alvie and she groans.
“Does my mum know?”
“ALVIE!” Pansy shouts and when I look at the mirror it looks like she’s trying to climb through the thing.
“Pansy!” Mum shouts, dragging her back. “You’re going to break it!”
“Your mum wants to talk to you.” I laugh a little.
“ALVIE! IT’S YOUR CHILD’S FAVOURITE GRANDMOTHER, CAN WE TALK?” Ginny shouts and mum leans back into the couch and moans, muttering something I don’t hear.
“Favourite grandmother?” Pansy scoffs, “Fuck off.”
“Are they angry at us or at each other?” Alvie asks cautiously as she edges closer.
“Both, definitely both.” I nod with a smile as Alvie sits down on my bed to face the onslaught of our mothers and Ginny Potter.
Not sure about this chapter but I hadn’t written one in a while and just, blegh, you know. I’m going to try and get some chapters written quickly because I’ve been busy lately. Yeah, leave a review if you like. I can’t decide if I want to write any other POV chapters, maybe an Albus one or maybe another James one, maybe even an Orion one if I’m feeling particularly wild! Probably not another Alvie one though because I found her difficult to write for some reason. Xo
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