Chapter 2 : Snitched
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Elegant CI by sharkbait. @ TDA
26 December 2026, 9.47 am
His head throbbed gently, almost rythmically. His throat was scratchy and dry as sandpaper. And his eyelids seemed to be glued shut, because for the life of him, Scorpius couldn't get them to open.
He lay very still, because it felt like even a tiny movement would shatter his body into a million pieces. He breathed, long, slow and deep; that was about the only thing he could do without fear of immediate bodily harm. Even thinking straight took immense effort.
After several tense, quiet minutes of careful inhalations and exhalations, he finally decided to try to open his eyes again. Slowly, his lids fluttered unshut. He sighed in relief when the initial blinking ended and he could make out the pattern of stars on the midnight-blue plafond. Being blind, even for those few minutes, had been terrifying.
It took him a few seconds to register that the ceiling he was staring at was not the plain, austere white one of his bedroom at home.
As soon as the realization struck, he shooted bolt upright, and immediately regretted it. His head spun in dizzying circles, so hard that he nearly threw up. Clutching the canary-yellow bedspread and breathing hard to steady himself, he looked up to see where he was—
And had a minor heart attack. No, he most definitely was not in his room. Not unless his mother had suddenly taken leave of her senses and decided to redecorate the place without telling him.
The room was small-ish, with a slanting roof, like it was built in an attic. It smelled like—Scorpius took a sniff—yes, definitely cinnamon. The scent tugged faintly at his memory, but he couldn't place it. There was only a single large window, letting in slices of dusty sunlight. The original pastel green wallpaper of the room was completely hidden by splotches of paint in every colour imaginable, like someone spent their free time shooting paintballs at the walls. Moving posters of the popular four-member boy-band, The Anarchists, took up considerable space.
The only exception was the wall at the far end, right opposite the window—instead of splatters of neon green or purple, or the winking, grinning face of Novak Shermangil, it was decorated with mirrors. Dozens upons dozens of them, in various shapes and sizes, with plain or ornamented frames, peacock-feathers and colourful fedoras garlanding them. Scorpius stared, and innumerable Scorpii with the same paler-than-usual colouring and bewildered expression stared right back at him.
In front of the largest, ornate gold-framed mirror, stood a vanity, with drawers spilling glittery make-up, used brushes, some bits of parchment and scraps of fabric. An off-white ballgown was carelessly thrown beside it.
Scorpius' head reeled. He recognised that gown. And also, he realised, the cinnamon-y smell of the room. That Irish girl from last night, Aileen something...
He drew a shaky breath, and dragged his fingers through his blonde hair. What had happened last night? Did he drink too much and pass out? But then, he wasn't hungover, and he knew that particular feeling from the Morning After of his Hogwarts graduation party. And it didn't explain how Aileen's gown ended up here or indeed, how he ended up here.
He closed his eyes and pressed the heels of his palms to his face. Spots danced in his vision. Think, he told himself, think think think...
25 December 2026, 11.27 pm
Cap d'Antibes, France
“—fail to understand why you're being such an absolute recluse, Scorpius. Honestly, would it kill you to smile and socialize a bit more?” Justina hissed at him.
“Look, can you drop this?” Scorpius replied tiredly. “I have a headache and—”
“Fine,” she cut across him harshly, “have fun being a sourpuss all by yourself, then.” She whirled and stalked away into the crowd of merry guests, leaving him staring.
“Trouble in Paradise?” Suddenly, a lilting voice behind him enquired.
He turned to see the Irish hotel heiress his Uncle had introduced him to earlier. It took him a second to remember her name. Aileen. “Trouble? Er, no?—I mean, not at all—”
Her breathy chuckle interrupted him. “Oh, don't worry, Mr. Malfoy. I was only joking.”
He didn't know how to reply. In all honesty, he didn't want to. He wanted to be left alone (his head did hurt quite a bit), but saying that would've been extremely rude, and Scorpius Malfoy was nothing if not unerringly polite.
Aileen was speaking again. “She seems sweet, your fiancé,” staring where Justina was now dancing with a very famous writer.
“She's my girlfriend,” he corrected her almost immediately.
“Oh.” That was all she said. And for a moment, they were strangers again; silent in a room full of rumbling coversations and tinkling laughs, glittering chandeliers and lovely, lonely souls.
Scorpius glanced sideways at the woman beside him. She was pretty, he supposed. Her honey blonde hair was set into elaborate curls and swept to one side; coral pink lips contrasted interestingly with sky-blue eyes; features were delicate and porcelain-pale. However, she wore a bored expression, and idly, Scorpius thought she looked much prettier with a smile.
Just as he was about to draw his gaze away, she turned to him, and realizing he was studying her intently, proceeded to raise a thin, inquisitive eyebrow.
He panicked. “Your, er, gown looks very beautiful.” As soon as Scorpius blurted them, he wished he could swallow the words back. He didn't know what possessed him to say that. True, women liked compliments, but these days, even an innocent remark could be misinterpreted as sexual harassment, so you never knew.
Aileen's eyes widened in surprise at the abruptness of the statement, but she thanked him graciously nonetheless. A forced-looking smile flickered at the corner of her lips.
This confused Scorpius. But then, he had no idea that the gown—an elaborate ivory-and-gold affair of satin and organza, cinched at the waist, flaring at the hips, and with a sweet-heart neckline that displayed quite a bit of cleavage—was nothing more than a costume for her. Besides, it had taken an inordinately long time to get into, made simple tasks like walking and talking a pain, and she rather thought she looked like her cousin Victoire's wedding cake in it.
“I know, gosh darn it. Shut up!”
Scorpius suddenly thought he heard Aileen mutter to herself, and turned to see her with her lips poised over her diamond bracelet. She dropped her hand in a flash, looking faintly ruffled.
He asked, “Did you, um, say something?”
“Why, nothing, Mr. Malfoy,” she replied, recomposing herself, and they relapsed into their stilted silence.
By the time the hors d'oeuvres were brought out, Scorpius was fervently hoping that the heiress would deem him a terrible conversationalist and just leave to find better company, with or without a scornful sneer thrown in his way. With this in mind, he resolved not to pay her any attention, and stared stonily ahead.
His resolution was short lived; there was a sharp gasp near him, followed by the sound of shuffling feet and shattering glass. He turned, and saw Aileen looking down the front of her aforementioned elegant dress, bewildered and horrified, as a large stain spread rapidly across it. A white-faced waiter stood in front of her, silver tray and broken champagne glasses littered around his feet.
A dark flush had crept up her face. “It doesn't matter... I'm fine,” she replied to the waiter's panicked apologies. Other guests were starting to notice the commotion. Flustered, she said, “I-I need to go,” turning to Scorpius and almost thoughtlessly pressing her half-empty champagne flute in his hand. “Excuse me,” she mumbled, and hurried away, daintily picking her way through the swarms of people, like Cinderella at the ball.
26 December 2026, 9.53 am
Beneath his pale fingers, Scorpius' eyes flew open with a start. The champagne...
He struggled to think past the inexplicable murkiness in his mind. He hadn't seen her again… His Uncle had made a speech about St. Matigny's and his charitable trust, followed by a formal toast, and then... The glass of bubbly golden beverage had just been in his hand, and he had quite forgotten how it came to be there. Besides, you had to drink when a toast was made—it was convention. Suddenly his head was flooded by a flash of memories; blurring lights and ice-blue eyes, a short, suffocating darkness and the ghost of a grin before sleepy nothingness.
He had been drugged, he realized, and with the realization, came the inevitable panic and confusion—how and who and why? He forced himself to calm down and think logically. First thing first; where was his wand?
He searched his pockets and the sheets around him, and came up empty-handed. So they've taken my wand as well, he thought. Swallowing against his dry throat, he decided on his next logical step—finding out where exactly he was.
He swung himself over the edge of the bed, shivering involuntarily when his feet made contact with cold wooden floorboards. He looked around; his shoes were gone. He got up and rapidly walked across to the door, and pushed it open.
Outside was a short, dark corridor, at the end of which, a flight of stairs led to the ground floor. As quiet as possible, Scorpius descended, wincing every time he stepped on a stair and it creaked.
At the foot of the steps, he tripped and almost broke his neck on a stray shoe. The place was dark—there weren't any windows, and more importantly, no doors. With a rapidly sinking heart, he walked further. Moments later, he came to another room, one which was open. Before he could give himself time to think about it, Scorpius stepped in.
Immediately, he was engulfed in a cloud of cigarette smoke. He had never been able to tolerate the stench. Choking and coughing, he peered through the haze, and at last made out the shape of two people.
There was a girl, huffing and puffing at the end of the white cancer stick, sitting on a chair with the Daily Prophet spread out on the dining table in front of her. A tall, rumple-haired bloke lay slumped on a sofa, idly flicking through channels on a TV. He looked up at Scorpius, whose eyes were still watering, and exclaimed “Finally! We thought you'd died, mate.”
“Well, if it wasn't for Miss I-Didn't-Overdose-Him-Deliberately,” now the girl spoke, voice muffled around her cigarette, “Prince Malfoy here would've been awake hours ago.”
“I heard that!” Came a third voice, drifting in from somewhere close. Scorpius looked up, and saw another girl stalking in, this one clutching a blue ceramic mug in her hands, her bright red hair coiled up and struck through with a pair of plastic chopsticks, and wearing—of all things—a hot pink Japanese kimono with a long slit up one side and elaborate gold brocade. “And for Merlin's sake,” she continued, “put out your dashed cigarette, Nicole. You bloody well know I can't stand it.”
The first girl, Nicole, grumbled, but obediently stubbed out the cigarette against the wooden table top. The redhead clucked her tongue disapprovingly, but was cheerfully ignored.
Scorpius, who had been silent all this time, finally found his voice. There was a number of things he wanted to say, but what ultimately got past his lips was, “B—but, you're not blonde!”
“And thank God for that!” perching herself on the arm of the sofa, the girl in the pink kimono exclaimed. “Do you know how astoundingly horrible I'd look as a blonde? I do. I dyed my hair in Sixth year. Worst two weeks of my life.”
Scorpius neither knew nor cared about her disaster of a hair-dyeing episode. Apparently, neither did the other two. Nicole flipped through the last page of her newspaper and said, “No, nothing here.” At the same time, the guy switched of the TV and declared, “Yeah, nothing here either.”
“Good for us then,” the redhead replied, delicately sipping from her mug.
Seeing that he was being forgotten again, Scorpius asked, “So then, you—you're not Aileen Alderdice?”
The girl looked up. “Of course not,” she answered, “Aileen Alderdice doesn't exist.”
He was sweating, his heart beating furiously. “What—why…” He took a deep breath. “Why am I here?”
Instead of answering him, the kimono wearing girl turned to the man, who had stood up and was stretching. He really was startlingly tall, and had Asian-looking features. “See, I told you Leo,” the girl said, “we should've tied him up and gagged him. Made it more realistic. Poor bloke doesn't even realise he's kidnapped.”
For a moment, Scorpius had the insane urge to laugh. “What?”
Nicole pushed back her chair and stood up too. Her stringy brown hair was tied back, and she was almost painfully thin. Beady-black eyes snapping up to him, she asked, “Are you trying to be thick? Kidnapped, Malfoy. Abducted. Nobbled. Snitched, if you will.”
Scorpius didn't know enough about Muggle literature to understand what Nicole meant, but what he did know rattled him. The words rang in his ears. Kidnapped. Abducted. Nobbled. He gulped, hard. “Who are you people?”
The red haired girl stood up and walked to him. Up close, he realised that her eyes were a darker and brighter blue than Aileen's. “Forgive us,” she said. “How rude of us not to introduce ourselves!” Turning to the brunette, she said, “This is Nicole Newman, and that…” she indicated the tall bloke, “is Leo Chang.” Leo waved to him with a mocking smile.
This was all too much for him. Hearing this bizzare woman introduce him to bunch of people, who couldn't have been much older than him, and had apparently snitched him, he wondered if he was hallucinating. Or maybe he had gone mad. This sort of thing happened in teen-centric novels, not real life.
“And you?” Scorpius asked. He had the strangest feeling that he had seen the auburn haired girl before today, but try as be might, he just couldn't recall where. “Who are you?”
The redhead's mouth dropped open into a cartoonish O. Putting her hand to her chest, she cried dramatically, “You don't recognise me? After seven years of getting educated together at the same institute of witchcraft and wizardry, you fail to recognise me? Scorpius Malfoy, you break my heart.”
Pretending to wipe away tears from her eyes, she continued, “Very well, in that case… I, my forgetful friend,” her mouth stretched into a winning grin, “am Rose Weasley.”
Author's Note: Miss me? 8)
This was rather filler-ish, I know, but bigger and better things are waiting ;)
Anyway, if you have anything you want to tell me, like how awesome, though bizzare you find Rose's dressing sense or something, feel free to shoot me a review.
Thanks so much for all your reviews and favourites in the first chapter- you guys are to me what a successful jewel heist is to Rose!
Till the next time,
PS. Any one has some ideas about which actor/model I can use as faceclaim for Leo? Suggestions would be welcome. :)
PPS. Some clarifications: 'Snitched' is a word I read Roald Dahl's The BFG which means, essentially, kidnapped. Scorpius isn't familiar with it because though he likes classic Muggle literature, he doesn't usually browse through the kid's section.
'Nobbled' is a word I came across which thumbing through my Oxford Thesaurus, as is my hobby. Apparently, it is a British informal synonym of kidnapped.
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