Disclaimer - the lyrics are Sugarcult's Saying Goodbye, the characters are JKR's creations, and the plot is mine.

Saying Goodbye

She kisses everyone goodbye
And waves her middle finger high
They're never gonna mess with her again

She had finally done it. After seven long, frustrating years, Pansy Rebecca Parkinson had graduated from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The celebration after the ceremony was going away party of sorts, and Pansy moved enthusiastically through her classmates, congratulating them as she saw fit. Outwardly, she smiled and hugged and was as cheerful as was possible for Pansy Parkinson to be. But on the inside, she was glaring and scorning them. However, she consoled herself with the thought that she would never have to deal with them again.

The drama queen is seventeen
And sleeping with boys for free
She's got a reputation of being easy

At seventeen, she was of age in the magical world. She was free from the expectations of school and her parents. And she loved it.

At school, she hated what she was known for. Yes, she had always had her share of boy toys. But the way people talked about her when they thought she wasn't listening was the worst.

"Slut," they would whisper.

"Whore," one said, but another argued, "Whores charge money."

Her classmates saw her as either an easy lay or a slut not to be associated with.

Every time they put her down, she makes a fist and the tears roll down
She packs her bags and plans to run away

They thought she didn't know what they said about her, thought she didn't know what they thought. But she did. One would think at Pansy wouldn't be the kind of girl to cry at insults. And she wasn't. But every once in a while, it just really got to her, and one or two would fall.

The first time it happened, she stared at her trunk and thought about leaving. Leaving everything behind. People, relationships, her reputation, her life as it was.

And then another part of her brain kicked in and said that wouldn't solve anything, and where would she go anyway and how would she finish school and how she couldn't get anywhere if she didn't finish school and so on and so forth.

But it was always there. In the back of her mind, hidden away. Just a thought, and maybe, a little bit of hope.

She's saying goodbye and leaving tonight
She's wasted all her lonely tear drops
She's saying goodbye and leaving tonight
She's used up all her lonely tear drops now

After the graduation party was finished and the newly graduates had left the school, Pansy, who hadn't left with her parents on the premise that she needed to talk to one of the professors about one thing or another, stole down to Hogsmeade and rented a small room over the Hog's Head.

She was finally going to do it. She didn't cry - she had nothing to cry for. She was finally ready to do the one thing she had been dreaming of doing since the first time she heard someone call her a slut - she was leaving. Simple as that. All of her belongings were shrunk and packed into a small tote bag. She had an eight o' clock appointment to Apparate Internationally to the receiving point in New York City. She had gotten a job working at a small restaurant in the city, and an apartment rented on the third floor of a somewhat run-down building farther out.

She had gotten all of this, all of which was Muggle, using a different name, and an ID she had magically created herself. By the next evening, Pansy Rebecca Parkinson would have vanished from the world.

And Rebecca Abigail Coleman would have joined it.

She thinks about herself and cares about nobody else
because the only friends she has all put her down
They hate her when she's beautiful and even more when she's a fool
They talk behind her back when it's her birthday

Pansy had never really had friends. She supposed it came with being in Slytherin - cunning and ambition often meant that relationships were used to help one achieve one's goals. Anyone she had ever considered a friend had lost that title by fourth year - there wasn't a single one of them that didn't involve themselves in the gossip and whispers about her.

She would admit that she wasn't the smartest of her year (no, that title went to Know-It-All-Granger) but it hadn't seemed to matter. At least, until everyone began to discuss her. Then, any little mess up was turned into a huge joke.

Her looks weren't something to brag about either, but when she took her time to make herself look good, she looked good. And that only seemed to fuel their whispers, saying how pretty she could be "if she only tried."

Every time they put her down, she makes a fist and the tears roll down
She packs her bags and plans to run away
And every time she makes a friend, the vicious cycle starts again
She's never, ever, ever looking back

Standing in her bare apartment, Pansy felt, for the first time in her life, free. No expectations, no limitations, no whispers behind her back, no reputation. It was just her. Completely and totally her. And she would shape her life the way she wanted to this time around.

She bought a couch that was a crimson red - a Gryffindor color. The walls of her living room were painted dark blue - a Ravenclaw color. And the trim of the windows in her kitchen were a pale yellow - a Hufflepuff color. But none of that mattered now. What mattered was that she liked the way she had decorated, and it didn't matter if the colors represented a house in Hogwarts - that was her past. Not the present. And she refused to let her past life interfere with her new one.

She's saying goodbye and leaving tonight
She's wasted all her lonely tear drops
She's saying goodbye and leaving tonight
She's used up all her lonely tear drops now

Pansy Rebecca Parkinson had never had to work. She had been waited on and cared for her entire life. She didn't have to worry about money.

Rebecca Abigail Coleman worked four to six days a week at the Appleridge Gardens restaurant in New York City. She had to pay bills and rent for her apartment.

And Rebecca loved her life far more than Pansy ever did. She had left that life behind her, and if given the choice, she wasn't entirely sure she would go back.

Pansy Rebecca Parkinson had long, straight midnight black hair that almost reached her waist, and dark green eyes like emeralds. Her birthday was December 14th.

Rebecca Abigail Coleman had shoulder-length wavy light brown hair. Her birthday was June 4th. Her eyes remained the same.

She's saying goodbye, she's wasted all her lonely tear drops
Saying goodbye, she's used up all her lonely tear drops now

Pansy had changed everything when she became Rebecca. But she hadn't changed her personality - it was her true self, the one she had been hiding all those years. She had said goodbye to her old life, to everything it meant.

The only time she had cried after changing was when the three year old child of one of the restaurant managers found his way into the pantry in the kitchen and covered himself in flour. And she was crying because she was laughing so hard. That had never happened in her old life. And the experience was wonderful.

In her past life, Pansy had felt very lonely. She highly doubted that would happen in her new one though.

Every time they put her down, she makes a fist and the tears roll down
She packs her bags and plans to run away from here
And every time she makes a friend, the vicious cycle starts again
She's never, ever, ever looking back

Since she moved, the only jokes that were made about her were to her face and good natured. She could never think of leaving Appleridge and the people there. Of leaving the friends she had there.

For the first time in her life, Pansy had people she could call friends and really mean it. There was Nathan, the chef and owner who believed that any of his workers who left without eating something would starve before they reached their homes; and Laura, the hostess who could fit six people at a table meant for two; Keegan, the bartender who everyone just called K; Jessie and Jesse, the waiter and waitress couple who were dating fifteen months and counting.

And then there was Emma. Emma Jadyn Fitzgerald could only be one thing to Pansy - a best friend. She stood barely 5' 2," but her attitude made up for her lack of height. She had light blue eyes and shoulder length strawberry blonde hair, and she was the best person to ever come into Pansy's life. She had embraced Pansy from the first day, her enthusiasm and good humor were catching, and Pansy found herself sitting outside a bookstore at two in the morning reading Hemingway with her after the first day of work. They had been inseparable ever since.

It had been hard for Pansy to be able to trust these people, but at the same time, it was much easier than she thought it would have been. And she knew - she could never go back to her old life, not for all the coffee in New York (Emma's variation of "all the tea in China").

She's saying goodbye and leaving tonight
She's wasted all her lonely tear drops
She's saying goodbye and leaving tonight
She's used up all her lonely tear drops now

"Becky! C'mon. It's one night out on the town. It's not going to hurt you, I promise!" Emma told her with a grin.

With a sigh and a smile of her own, Pansy finally said with a fake sigh and far more dramatically than was necessary, "Fine. Just because you won't let me sleep if I don't."

"That's my girl!" Emma responded and bounced off the chair she had been sitting on to find clothes appropriate for the evening.

She ended up forcing Pansy into a pair of dark jeans - Pansy had absolutely refused to wear a skirt, and Emma couldn't argue because she wasn't wearing one either - and a dark red tank top. Emma allowed her to do her own make-up, for the sole fact that Emma had a slight tendency to go a little overboard with it.

Pansy had kept her make-up to a bare minimum, mascara, blush and lip gloss, though Emma tried to get her to put on "just a touch of eyeliner!" Eyeliner was Emma's absolute favorite make-up and this night was no different, with a thin line liquid black liner on her top lid and crayon black on the inside of her lower lid.

The club Emma took her to was called La PĂȘche Bleue. Pansy (and Rebecca) spoke French, and looked at her best friend and asked, "The Blue Peach?"

Emma just grinned and pulled her inside. It was dark, with colored lights lighting up the dance floors, and music loud enough to make Pansy flinch back. But soon she got used to it and actually began to enjoy herself. She and Emma sat on a couple of the low chairs and pointed out good looking men to each other. When Pansy got asked to dance by one of said men, and grin and slight push from Emma made her accept.

She's wasted all her lonely tear drops now

A few dances with Justin, the man who she was dancing with, and then they sat down on the chairs and began to talk, which lead to him asking, "Hey, would you like to come to my apartment for a drink?"

Pansy froze, her past hitting her like a train. Slut. She could almost hear the whispers again. No, there was no way that she could let that become a part of this new life she had created.

"No," she told him, "I have work at seven tomorrow, I really can't." It was a lie, the restaurant didn't even open till ten and she didn't have work the next day anyway.

"Maybe some other time then?" he asked.

"Maybe," she said, but in her mind she knew she wouldn't accept. He asked for her number, and she gave him one - the number of the pizza place she and Emma always ordered from. She found her friend and suggested that they leave, insisting that she was tired. Emma knew her well enough to know that 'Becky' wasn't really tired, but didn't object and followed her out of the club and back to her apartment.

Pansy told Emma that she was in no condition to go back to her own apartment, which was only slightly true, because although Emma was a bit tipsy, she could have managed. Instead, she slept on Pansy's couch, knowing that there was something that Pansy needed to tell her, and would be there for her to tell it to.

Pansy went to her own bedroom, and lay down. She stared at the ceiling, and tears formed in her eyes - her past wasn't something she liked to think about, and tonight, she had faced it. But then she thought about it, and she knew that she had really left Pansy Rebecca Parkinson behind. Pansy would have accepted his offer without a second thought. Rebecca Abigail Coleman didn't give it a second thought either. Becky wouldn't have gone - it just wouldn't happen.

Becky decided to tell Emma about her past in the morning - not the entire story, just the parts that Emma needed to know - the whispers, the backstabbing, the hurt she suffered through for seven long years.

And with that, Rebecca Abigail Coleman went to sleep.

-finis-