Chapter 18 : The One with the Realizations
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It had been a week and a half since Draco Malfoy had been attacked. The investigation that had begun had been slow with little to no progress. The most irritating thing for Rose though was that she was beginning to see another side to the wizarding world that she did not like. No, she did not like it one bit.
Her boyfriend was frustrated and angry all the time and she could not blame him. The papers had made jokes about the attack and people sent owls daily telling the Malfoy family they finally were getting what the deserved. People were cruel, and though Rose had been raised understanding evil and cruelty, she had never truly seen it. How could people be so prejudice to a family they never knew? Even when she thought back, Draco Malfoy had done little to anyone's family since he was a minor when the war broke out. Yet here she was writing her boyfriend a letter that had little substance because she had no idea what she could truly say to help.
Her father looked into the previous crimes that had happened to the Malfoy family and was disturbed to find out they had indeed been overlooked and the cases dropped. If there was one thing everyone knew about Ronald Weasley is that he HATED to be embarrassed. He felt his department was not all he thought it was now that he had found corruption. Rose remembered that night when her father came home upset and stressed. She heard her parents talking downstairs and she crouched on the staircase to drop down her extendable ears and listen.
"I just can't believe it Hermione. No one, and I mean no one dislikes that family more than me. But to just close a case? To not even look into someone being robbed? We fought an entire war to end such prejudice." Ron spoke like he had been awake for days and was carrying the weight of the world.
"I know. I can't believe it myself, we will never be better if we keep living in the past. What did you do?"
"I fired them. On the spot. Two of our best and we had been blind to it all this time. Harry barely said a thing and left it to me. He was fuming. We are investigating every auror now and I feel blinded. This will make the papers you know? What if they sue since we fired them so fast?"
"If they sue we will win. No one wants a corrupt auror. You help some of the most frustrating and vile people and sometimes you get to help the most loving and generous. You become an auror because you want to help people not just help people you like. I love you, and I am proud of all the work you have done. A few bad aurors within that large of a branch was bound to happen you can't blame yourself Ron."
He sighed, and changed the subject. Rose stood up her mind racing, Scorpius was right. It was not like she did not believe him, rather she assumed he was exaggerating or that he did not have all the info but the aurors were still helping somehow. It had never in a million years occurred to her that sometimes people may not want to help you.
She was a Weasley. She hated her last name and loved it all the same. But she never realized how much she benefit from her name. No one would ever look down on her, no one ever judged her, people loved her and wanted to be her friend. Even when she was sorted people assumed she must be ambitious rather than evil. Everyone always assumed the best of her because she was a Weasley and people always assumed the worst of Scorpius because he was a Malfoy.
The world was not black and white now but full of gray. The world simply put, was not fair. She walked back to her room and began to think more on her sudden and concerning realization. How long had she gone through life assuming everyone was treated as well as she was?
Her father had grown up poor and always had to share. Her mother was judged for her blood. Yet here was Rose, wealthy, well-liked, and the only judgment she had to deal with was high expectations from others.
Then… Well then there was Scorpius. Judged for his parents, judged for his blood, judged for his behavior, judged for everything. Her heart hurt for him. She wanted to go to him so bad and say she finally understood, or at least was willing to try and understand. Even though she wrote him a sloppy letter earlier she would write him again.
I'm sorry. I never realized what it must be like to be you. I'm sorry I was not very supportive when you told me how aurors treated your family in the past and I never took the time to really understand why "changing the Malfoy name" was so important to you. I love your name. I love who you are. I know I still don't get this whole thing and what it's like to be you, but I want to try. Can we meet up once more before school? I miss you.
My dad is coming home late and working on your father's case. Hopefully they will catch someone soon. He is determined. Tell your mother I said hello and that I'm using the paints she gave me. I'm still not very good, but it is just as relaxing as she said.
Maybe we can find something else relaxing to do when we see each other? I have a feeling you'll have some ideas.
I love you, and I can't wait to see you soon.
"I'll be back in the morning mum, let me know if you need me to bring anything." Scorpius hugged his mother and left to go back home. They had spent most of the day at his father's bedside as he regained strength. Draco Malfoy had awoken a few days ago, groggy, furious, and annoyed.
He hugged his son and wife closely. Scorpius was so thankful his dad would be okay, but the frustration that this even occurred lingered in the back of his mind. Every night he would leave the hospital room to go home and every night he would have to burn letters from people saying they were glad his Dad was attacked or that they hoped him and his family would all just die. Scorpius didn't want his mother to see any of it. In fact, he didn't want anyone to see or know about it. But of course, Rose and Rupert did. Rupert came over to cheer Scorpius up and practice quidditch when a howler arrived calling the Malfoy's nothing but the foulest of names.
Rupert of course told Acacia about the incident who then told Rose, who was then mad that Scorpius had not told her.
Frankly, he had not found it a big deal. This had happened his entire life, it just became more common whenever the Malfoy name was in the paper. Yes, it had been a long week and selfishly Scorpius was ready to be back at Hogwarts and away from this mess.
Rose's dad would find the attacker, throw him in Azkaban, and Scorpius could go back to his quiet existence until someone else robbed one their apothecaries or vandalized their home. He sighed, exhausted.
He flooed home directly into his bedroom to find Rupert playing gobstones with the house elf, Petey.
"Well just make yourself at home I suppose then." Scorpius commented with an eyebrow raised, surprised to see his friend.
"Always do! Look I'm about to destroy Petey in gobstones just like I always have you Scorpius." Rupert exclaimed.
"Sir, you have forgotten though that I still have two moves left! Master Scorpius, would you like me to let your friend win or lose?" Petey said in his high pitched voice.
"Oh well lose of course Petey. Do you worst, destroy him even, otherwise he gets way to cocky."
"What? I'm winning Petey!" Rupert yelled in indignation before two moves that would cause him to lose and be completely rattled trying to beat Petey all night.
Scopius loved that Rupert never forced you to talk but would show up when you needed him. They were brothers. While he laughed at his friend playing gobstones an owl knocked on his window. Strange, Rose had already written him today.
He went over to grab the letter and read.
She was amazing. She was actually trying to understand how different their lives were. The thought had crossed his mind before that she would never get what it was like living on the outcast side of society. He wrote her back quickly to say that he loved her too, was thankful for her, and though he could not meet her before going back to Hogwarts he was thrilled to see her again and "Relax".
The Christmas hols had come and gone. It was time to go back! Draco Malfoy had come home two days before Scorpius was to go back and everyone was finally getting back to normal. Scorpius had instructed the house elves to intercept all mail and make sure it wasn't hateful before it arrived to his parents. He was determined to spare their feelings.
Sadie and Zurie helped Scorpius pack all his things, bowed and left him to his thoughts before leaving for the train. He could not wait to go back to Hogwarts! To see Rose every day, to play quidditch, and to finish the DADA task. When his father was still in a coma he had time to get ahead on his reading and had actually enjoyed "The Magic Within the Walls". Sealion Heals was a good writer and Scorpius had already taken many notes.
The book was all about Hogwarts. How it was built, the structure, the history, covering everything from the knights that protected it, the towers that stood proudly at the top of it, and the grounds which ran much further than Scorpius realized. As a child he had a long talk about not going to Hogwarts, his parents suspected he may be more accepted at Durmstrang but Scorpius whined as a little eleven year old that he HAD to go to Hogwarts. The pictures of the beautiful school were captivating to him even then.
There were a few tough moments where he agreed Durmstang would be easier, but Hogwarts was home. A magnificent home at that. And today he was going back!
Only his mom would take him to King's Cross this time, his father was still weak and the aurors were worried it was not safe for him yet. Astoria Malfoy had held up well during this trial and was at her husband's bedside constantly, ran his meetings to keep the business up and running, and somehow even had time to get dinner with Scorpius and send him with some fresh baked goods to Hogwarts.
Scorpius hugged her tightly at the platform.
"I love you mum. I promise I'll write."
"I love you too, thank you for being so great over these past few weeks I know it hasn't been easy, but we are getting through it just fine so don't you worry, focus on school." She said with a soft smile while straightening his tie.
"I know, I just hope they all leave us alone. I'm tired of it and don't like leaving you to take care of it all on your own."
"Every family has their problems Scorpius, we all love one another, we get along, we are not stressed by finances, with the exception of this past week we are in good health, and you are a fantastic son. Yes, there are some people who dislike us. But if that's the burden we have to bare I will gladly bare it."
He sighed. He did not like having to bare anything at all. He nodded at her and hugged her once more as he looked around the platform for a pack of red hair.
He could not seem to find Rose and guessed she would be on the train, he quickly boarded and headed to the Prefects carriage in hopes of finding her there.
She wasn't there either. Blimey where could she be? Scorpius sat down for the prefects meeting to begin as the train started to move. Suddenly the door to the carriage was thrown open and a crazed Rose walked in with messy hair and in her normal clothes.
"Sorry, sorry, my family overslept but I am here and will change into robes shortly, did I miss anything?" Everyone laughed at her as she took a seat next to Scorpius.
"You sure know how to make an entrance" he whispered as the meeting went on with Penelope Franks droning on about new patrol timetables, helping a new Beauxbatons transfer student, and some other random information that Scorpius did not care about.
"I know, my mum is out of town so of course we all were late because my dad sleeps like a giant during winter."
Scorpius chuckled. He could not wait to finish up this semester with Rose.
"Okay so Scorpius and Aphrodite, will you help the new student get settled?" Penelope yelled to break Scorpius out of his whispers to Rose.
"What, oh yes of course. Do we already know she's a Ravenclaw?" He asked.
"Yep they did a sorting over break when she toured the school I suppose. Aphrodite they have placed an extra bed in your dormitory so please let me know if anything is not there."
"You got it Pen. Is she on the train, should we introduce ourselves now?" Aphrodite asked.
"Oh well I suppose she is. Yes after this meeting if one of you would go be a friend to her that would be great. Okay any other questions about this semester? You all have been a great bunch and I hope you know it has been an honor to be your head girl!"
The prefects quickly chatted with one another before moving to check on the younger students, catch up with friends, and if you were Scorpius and Rose find a secluded carriage.
Scorpius found one quickly and charmed it to lock before turning to kiss Rose. Merlins beard he missed her. How pathetic to miss someone so much in just two weeks. As they snogged he ran his hand through her hair and could feel her tousling his hair as well. After a short while Rose pulled away.
"I missed you too." She smirked.
He groaned. "Then why did you stop?"
"Because I have to keep you looking for more and we still need to find all our friends."
"But Rose, our friends don't care and are probably snagging each other in their own carriages, and I would hate to interrupt them that would be awkward for everyone don't you think?"
She gave him a quick kiss and smiled at him. "Well you're probably right and I guess I could be persuaded…"
"Rose Weasley you're the most beautiful girl in the entire world" kiss "you're the brightest witch. I know" kiss "you are the best Slytherin there ever was" kiss "and you're funny" kiss "and you're kind and loving" kiss "and I love watching you eat faster than everyone I know" kiss "and I love when you snog me instead of Gregory Flint" kiss.
"Hey that was a dare!"
They continued to laugh and catch up on the last week with one another. Eventually though as they got closer to Hogwarts Rose did need to change.
"Alright I need to get my robes on since I never did with my crazy morning." She paused expecting Scorpius to get up and leave.
"Oh well bummer thought I'd get a show!" Rose motioned for him to leave. He laughed and then got up to go buy some Chocolate Frogs and to go find Rupert.
Did he really expect her to change in front of him? Was that just a joke? Was she being insecure? Should she feel comfortable changing in front him? Was she a prude? Crazy how a simple sentence could send a thousand thoughts into your mind. She loved loved loved kissing Scorpius but she didn't think she was ready for more. It actually kind of scared her. All of her other friends were doing more though. Scorpius was always a gentlemen and didn't push her, but she found herself stopping them anytime they were snogging and him grudgingly pausing. What if she wasn't enough for him?
"MELIN'S BEARD ROSE STOP. He made a joke." She yelled internally to herself while changing.
Dating was confusing.
Finally she finished up, fixed her hair, and opened the door to look for Scorpius and her friends. She saw Scorpius down the hall talking with Aphrodite and who she assumed was the new girl.
"I never knew British boys could be so handsome I think I'm going to like it here." The girl winked at Scorpius and TOUCHED HIS ARM. Who is this girl? Rose walked a bit faster and put her arms around Scorpius' waist.
"Ready to go find everyone?" Rose muttered, while smiling at Aphrodite and ignoring the new girl. Hmm the new girl was pretty. Not Aphrodite pretty but she had blonde hair, and bright green eyes, and she actually reminded Rose of Scorpius ex-girlfriend Marley McCabe in a way.
"Oh yes of course, and Rose this is Julia Harris the new student. She's actually American not French! Who knew Americans even went to Beauxbatons?" Rose let go of Scorpius and held out her hand.
"Nice to meet you Julia, I'm Rose."
"Nice to meet you too, Scorpius here and Aphrodite were just telling me about all the classes and the Ravenclaw tower. What house are you in?"
"I'm in Slytherin." Rose motioned to the green on her sweater and noticed Julia's eyebrows raise a bit. This girl was one of those people in your life, who had done nothing wrong, yet you just could not stand them…
"Oh well very cool." Julia said awkwardly.
Aphrodite quickly grabbed Julia and said they were off to meet more people.
"Well that felt forced, what's up?" Scorpius turned to her.
"Nothing, I just was ready to go find our friends." She smiled at him, grabbed his hand and went to go look for Acacia and Rupert. She would tell Acacia later about the weird vibes the new girl gave her, and how she was feeling insecure about her and Scorpius. Until then, she put those thoughts away to focus on some joke Rupert was telling.
It was still going to be a great semester.
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