Disclaimer: J.K. Rowling is the keeper of the keys and grounds of the wizarding world. I am simply borrowing one of the keys to unlock a door she has not yet opened. Hope you have fun inside! Summary and inspiration taken from the musical number "Stranger to the Rain" from Children of Eden.

: : S t r a n g e r t o t h e R a i n : :

By: cedrixfan

Dedicated to Becca, who has always been my dearest friend, be it rain or shine.

Demons. Demons everywhere, surrounding her delicate form, tempting her. Their shrill mockery sends an unpleasant shiver up her spine despite the warmth of the dry atmosphere. Their eyes are pitch black and unending spheres of turmoil, building schemes to win her soul. Without her consent, the dark pupils of fiery matter consume her, suffocating her will to live. Realizing their plight, she struggles to turn around and race away from her calling fate. Her fast pace soon becomes sluggish and lethargic, gravity proving a weighty burden amidst the pull of temptation. All of a sudden, a monstrous stone wall materializes ten meters before her, blocking her path to salvation. Having no alternative, she closes her eyes and summons all of her energy in a desperate leap of faith into the emptiness above. Her fortune takes a turn, and, instead of gravity weighing her down, it lifts, granting her passage into the unknown, a world above all fear, all grief and anguish. Emotion stretching farther than relief and beyond all comprehension envelopes her every thought, every desire and notion. Far below, her troubles fry in the barren wasteland of sin as she relishes in the surreal sanctuary of vacant space…

:Spring 2024:

Rose blinks. She's just completed Uncle Charlie's Care of Magical Creatures essay two days early. She isn't much fond of bugbears, but she knows enough about the bearish humanoid beasts to scrape off a rather thorough and satisfactory essay. A few loose sheets of parchment are stacked messily underneath her finished work, slightly crumpled from her left writing hand baring heavily upon the top sheet. Beside the stack is another, though much thicker than the first. Pursing her lips, Rose tucks a lock of honey-red hair behind her ear, blows a wisp of the wavy mass from her eyes and flips through the second stack, looking as if she would rather rip each sheet to shreds and use the remnants as kindling for the common room fire. She's tempted but scowls away the impulse and flicks her eyes to the right-hand corner of each page:

Elizabeth Vesely…Jason Abercrombie…Jonathan Cauldwell…Ella McMillan…

Honestly, is she the only student capable of writing a decent essay? With a disapproving shake of her head, Rose skims on:

Christian Bennett…Albus Potter…Roxanne Weasley…Fallon Ruce…

The names seem endless, indicating to Rose that she will be turning in tonight much later than she had initially planned. She rubs her eyes and groans before flipping over another page, then another and another...

Alas, after several more essays, only one name remains:

Scorpius Malfoy.

With the last piece of parchment balled tightly in her fist, she stalks off, leaving her things behind.

She is perfectly content with being alone in her fantasy world but is soon vaguely aware of another's presence. Deciding it male, with his protective aura encompassing her every movement and thought, she grows invigorated beyond all fathomable credence. When he's close enough to touch, a wave of belonging breaches from her head to her toes, her mind to her soul.

Rose blinks.


"I already told you, Weasley." Scorpius Malfoy eyes his friends continuing without him to the dungeons. "I needed help with my essay."

He waits patiently for the petite and beautiful Gryffindor genius to speak, but all the 7th year Slytherin receives is an icy glare. He should expect as much.

He adds, "Is that such a crime?"

His innocence is maddening.

"Yes," Rose hisses through her large but perfect teeth. "It's called cheating, Malfoy, and I fully oppose it." She narrows her eyes, daring her foe to tend her fiery Weasley temper even more.

He does.

"You do, do you?" he laughs in disbelief, semiconsciously rumpling his gorgeously unkempt tufts of dark-blonde hair, smirking like a devious child. "I find that difficult to believe. Wonder why that is? Oh, right—you help people cheat all the time."

"Don't test me."

He sends her an angry, yet hurt look. "Why bloody not? You've only ever been rude to me since day one. Why can't I feed you some of your own medicine?"

The glare again.

He sighs, once more running a hand through his hair, "Alright—this is stupid, Weasley. Will you just tell me if you'll tweak it or not?"

After taking one glance at his calm, pleading face, Rose turns her hazel eyes to the floor and bites her bottom lip in indecision. He doesn't deserve help. All he's ever been to her is…well, he's never actually been anything, but it's more the fact that…well, he takes after his father, doesn't he? Rose has grown up in a household full of nasty stories involving the late-death eater families, including the Malfoys. Like father, like son.


She conjures a way to stall, crossing her arms and cocking her head to one side. "Give me one good reason why I should."

Scorpius struggles with that for a while, his eyebrows furrowed in concentration and silver eyes staring at his thoughts. Rose won't admit it, but she really does love his eyes. And his hair…and lightly tanned, toned arms…his tongue as it peeks through his lips when he concentrates…and what tempting lips those blushing pilgrims are…

No, she is delusional. She has been warned countless times about the famous Malfoy charm. "Rosie, even your mum had a thing for ol' Draco, didn't you, love?" said her father, to which her mother flushed and retorted almost too quickly, "Don't be ridiculous, Ronald!" She was only five years old at the time, and, even at that young age, she had already been thoroughly reminded that any Malfoy means trouble, Mr. Constellation being no exception.

All too soon, the smirk fades from his angular face.

"I don't have one."

Rose's eyes flick to his in surprise. Has she heard him correctly?

Somehow, he seems to read her mind. "You heard me. I haven't a reason…or, at least, none that will make you do this for me." His eyes are sad, and it takes all of Rose not to give in right then to his request. She fidgets on the spot, and all that breaks through the silence between them, alone in the entrance hall, is the habitual nervous clinking of Rose's fingernails against each other. She can't stop her hands from shaking slightly, though she hasn't any idea why.

He's not Scorpius Malfoy in that moment, not the Scorpius Malfoy she knows—or, rather, the Scorpius Malfoy she doesn't know…

Especially when he does the unthinkable:

He takes her hand.

The contact is instantly powerful, so much so that Rose's lips refuse to emit protest. As the blonde boy gingerly pries her sweaty hand open, she cannot move, nor think…but she can feel.

And what she feels is beyond her wildest dreams.

When Scorpius has successfully gained back possession of his crumpled essay from her grasp, he gently pulls his hand away; though his gaze still firmly captivates hers.

"You won't be needing this anymore," he whispers, and, though his voice is incredibly soft, it seems to carry and echo off the ceiling, the floor, and through Rose's mind long after he departs. She doesn't call him back when he turns away from her and slinks down the dungeon stairs to the Slytherin common room; however, for a fleeting moment, she feels he shouldn't go, that he shouldn't belong down in the dungeons, down with the other Slytherins, the outcasts of the 21st century.


She roughly gains back her senses, feeling utterly ridiculous for having been effected in the way she had by him. By his touch…oh, how warm his hand felt in hers…and God, those eyes…

Feeling disgusted with herself for the mere thought that he was, in the least, pleasant, Rose concludes that he must be up to something. Why is he playing with her mind? What scheme does he have up his sleeve? By the time Rose finds herself before the Fat Lady—though the name still sticks with her, she has lost a great deal of weight since Rose's parents' schooldays, thanks to the Witch Watchers diet—she has convinced herself that Malfoy is nothing more than a mischievous prat. It comforts her to think that she hasn't been swayed by his charm.

Not yet, at least.

Scorpius Malfoy means trouble, all right—trouble disguised as temptation.

Or is temptation the trouble?

She has the desire to breathe his air, think his thoughts, eat his words and melt into his soul one drop at a time for always and eternity. At his touch, she soars higher and higher above her forgotten fate. All the while, his presence still lingers on the tips of her skin, singing and requesting entrance into her open and welcoming soul.

Rose blinks. She almost turns back: perhaps, she can catch up with Beth and Albus, for they've only just exited through the field gates. No one would be the wiser. However, despite her judgement and anxiety, she keeps her feet planted where they are suctioned to the ground outside the Slytherin locker room by gushy mud. She fiddles nervously with her feebly drying umbrella as she rehearses what she'll say to him over and over in her mind. There is no reason why she should be so apprehensive to do this, for it's no big deal. All she has to do is ask for his essay back so she can correct it. Though she has added a few lines to her speech, that is truly all that is necessary for her to say.

Just when he emerges from the room, his Nimbus Cloud Nine broom swung over one shoulder and eyes gleaming with pride, Rose's umbrella decides to spring a vendetta against her and opens on her face, colliding painfully with her nose and sending her to the ground in a muddy heap.

Just perfect.

She hears his chuckle close by before she opens her eyes. Her heart leaps a few stories when she sees his smiling face only a foot above her. Of course, her practiced speech lays completely forgotten, leaving her tongue-tied.

He offers her a hand. "Now, I can't say I expected you to be here at all, but I really hadn't expected this."

Shaking her head to rid herself of not-so-innocent thoughts, she refuses his hand and ceremoniously struggles to stand from the ground. Once she successfully manages to remain on her two feet, Rose whips out her wand and cleans her robes, repeating the appropriate spell to do so bitterly under her breath. She doesn't even bother retrieving her sopping-wet umbrella now stuck in the muck at her feet.

After a few beats of awkward silence, the only noise being the cackles of Scorpius' teammates from the locker room, Scorpius clears his throat. "So, Miss Weasley, what brings you here after our flawless victory?"

She misinterprets his humour for arrogance and scowls, blatantly rolling her eyes at him. He appears to ignore her reaction to the remark and waits patiently for Rose's reply.

Though she doubts whether she's doing the right thing, she musters a few ounces of courage like the Gryffindor she is and mutters through clenched teeth, "I'd like to have your essay back."

Sliding a damp sleeve across his sweaty face, Scorpius looks at her, confused.

"Come again?"

The umbrella incident has left her in a rather foul mood. "Give me your essay, Malfoy!" she barks, but soon realizes how rude she is being and adds politely this time, "Give me your essay…err, please."

It takes a moment for him to register what she's referring to, but, all too soon, his eyes light up in understanding.

"Oh," he says, his right, bushy eyebrow raised higher than his left one, "So, you've changed your mind, have you?"

She admits sheepishly, not looking him in the eye, "Yes."


"Err…because I…b-because…"

"Your Potter cousin coaxed you into doing it?"

"He hadn't anything to do with—"

"Your brother dared you?"

"N-no, not—"

"You felt guilty?"

"Well, maybe a litt—"

"You secretly love me and have been dying to win my heart for the last six years?"

Her jaw drops a good inch or so, and she flushes a colour worthy of her name.

Where had that come from?

"Don't push it, Malfoy."

His trademark smirk captures his face in an almost permanent embrace. How can she possibly have a fluttery stomach around this pompous git?

"I was simply trying to lighten the mood," he explains, his innocent tone filling every syllable. It almost drives Rose insane. Why has she involved herself in this mess?

"Well," she replies coolly, crossing her arms and leaning her hip to one side. "It didn't work."


She can't stand it anymore. "Alright, Malfoy, bring me your bloody essay by the end of the day, or I won't even consider doing this for you again, you hear?"

"You'll consider doing this again if I do?"

Snatching up her drenched umbrella, Rose snaps, "Goodbye, Malfoy."


"Don't test me."

He rests his strong, firm hands gently on her hips and sways her elegant body back and forth in the cool wind accompanying his presence. Feeling completely at ease as autumn's first breeze, she wraps her arms about his neck and the dark gap between them melts away into blissful nothingness…

Rose blinks.

"Thanks a million, Weasley."

She peers up at him from his fully corrected essay she has just handed him back after Professor Lupin's intriguing Patronus lesson. She caught up with him after the bell rang, signaling the end of classes for the day, and they are stationed at the corner of the Defense Against the Dark Arts corridor, only a few students still passing them by and paying them puzzled looks. He's smiling…not smirking, but really and truly smiling.

He really does appear and sound genuinely appreciative for what she has done. She still can't wrap her mind around why she decided to take pity on him. Or was it pity? Perhaps, she actually felt guilty…or possibly something else…

"You're welcome," she quietly responds, not knowing why she feels she should be polite to him. He's a Malfoy, after all. Scorpius turns his head to the side for a moment, watching a pair of third year divas hurling childish insults at each other before disappearing as they climb further down the moving staircase to the floor below. While he does so, Rose submits to her urge to admire his profile. His one eye in her present view is squinted in thought, though it shines as mysteriously and handsomely as ever. And his mouth, though she can only see half of it, is puckered in a way that seems so natural…so tender…so…

"You know," he voices, his head still facing away from her, "I honestly thought you wouldn't do it."

Rose flips him a guarded look. "Why wouldn't I?"

Now, he's staring at her again. Oh, how she wishes he'd stop doing that…that way, she wouldn't have to face the fact that she doesn't want him to turn away…

Leaning his shoulder against the wall with his hands stashed deep in his pockets, he amusedly snorts, "You can't be serious." He shakes his head with his amused smile still painted across his perfect face. She wonders whether she'll ever have a conversation with the boy that ends on a light note. She feels at that moment that it certainly won't today.

But how wrong she can be never occurs to her.

"You thought I'd deceive you like that?"

An "of course" spews from his mouth without hesitation. Honestly, she doesn't have a thing to say to that. Even if she does, she can't possibly muster the voice, for she feels like she's about to blow a fuse.

He must sense her temper level rising at its usual rapid rate, for he adds in a failed attempt to calm her, "Why wouldn't I after all these years? You hate me."

Though his words don't help her temper, they most certainly put it on hold, for they effect her greatly, almost like a stab in the chest. Several stabs, actually.

"I don't hate you!" she counters, almost too loudly. She shocks herself with her words, for she does hate him, doesn't she? She can't avoid this one, so she admits it, admits it to herself that she does not hate Scorpius Malfoy. There is no taking it back now. She hasn't any idea where, when, how or why this happened, but she does knows that, whatever it is she feels for the Slytherin pest, it most certainly is not hatred.

He simply gapes at her.

"You don't?"

"Don't make me take it back."


"I don't, Malfoy."

"You're absobloodylutely certain?"

She glares daggers at him. "Yes."

Scowling, he brings himself away from the wall and advances a step toward her. "You could have fooled me."

Another stab wound breaks her patience…or what little is left of it, if she has any at all to begin with. "What do you want me to say, Malfoy? That I do hate you?"

This time, it appears he has been stabbed.

"No. Hell, no."

The honesty and vulnerability in his tone greatly puzzles Rose. Why would he care if she hates him or not? He's never cared before, for her kindness, her generosity…for her, herself…

He hasn't—has he?

"Then what do you want from me?" she asks softly, not even knowing what she wants from herself.

Scorpius locks his eyes with hers for a few beats before turning his gaze to the ground.

"I want, I-I want you to see that I—" His cheeks flush as he cuts off abruptly, shakes his head then starts over, "I want you…t-to correct my Patronus essay."

For a reason unbeknownst to her, Rose feels a pang of disappointment at his words. She doesn't know what she expected him to say, but she knows it was not that. Why wouldn't it be that, though? The pang sails gradually to her heart. Surely, all he wants from her is help in school, right?

"Your essay?"



"Once I've finish it."

"Which will be…?"

"Once I've started it."

"You haven't started yet?!"

"Hey!" he defends, "You haven't begun, either, Weasley. We just got the assignment ten minutes ago."

She blushes, feeling embarrassed all of a sudden. "Of course. Silly me."

Sending her a confused look, probably because he doesn't believe anyone in their generation has the silly word "silly" in his or her vocabulary, he clarifies, "So, you'll check over it once I'm through?"

She nods.

Giving her one last, genuine and gorgeous, quirky smile, Scorpius adjusts his bag strap on his shoulder and turns to leave.

"Don't disappoint." Her heart flutters when he winks at her before taking his usual long, languid strides down the corridor. Rose watches him until he disappears from view. Though he's long gone, she still mutters after him, a small smile hinting at the corners of her mouth:

"I won't."

When the gap disintegrates into the heavenly gloom, she embellishes all her thoughts and emotions into him. Soon, she feels his passion pouring like a waterfall down her throat from his ethereal breath, feeling, also, the intensity of the moment seeping through every single pour in her body and entering the folds of her heart, mind and soul. Being one with him, she feels certain there is nowhere else she'd rather be but enveloped in his indescribably loving embrace. She could stay there forever, through eternity and beyond, never once desiring to pull away.

Rose blinks. She doesn't expect him to remain with her while she critiques his work, but everyday lately seems to unearth a new surprise for her…most often regarding him.

"But didn't he say you could choose your Patronus?"

They are in the library, and the sun has just recently set below the horizon, turning in for the night and unearthing the moon to keep watch over the Earth with its calm, lunar light.

"Yes…and no," she answered, pointing to a paragraph in her own essay. "Only if you're desperate or you've had a particularly drastic change in personality or character can your animal change."

"Oh. Got it."

Rose glances at him seated in the chair across from her at the desk for a second before concentrating on the essay once more. She makes several careless error corrections before Scorpius speaks again.

"I didn't know you had freckles on your nose."

Her eyes land on his, lips pursed and expression puzzled.

"They're nothing new, Malfoy."

"I know," he sighs, leaning back in his chair to stretch his back and arms; Rose tries not to stare at him. "But I never noticed them before."

Rose feels she should defend herself for some reason. "Then why notice now?"

He laughs, leaning his elbows on the table and peering at her from over his folded hands, "I was looking at you, of course."

Damn, why is he so bold?


"Because you're there to look at, I suppose."

She feels incredibly vulnerable. "That's not an answer."

"Well," he concludes, still staring at her with his steel orbs. "It'll have to suffice, won't it?"

She sends him the usual icy glare.

"Alright, I'll stop, Weasley," he surrenders irritably, "And I won't tell what I was going to say, either, since you're in such a foul mood…as always. You'd probably clobber me."

Despite her anger at the insufferable twit, Rose cannot suppress her curiosity. "What were you going to say?"

He gives her a timid glance.

"I promise I won't clobber you, Malfoy…" He still doesn't appear inclined to answer, so she adds a threat, "But I will if you don't tell."

It's his turn to glare.

"Fine." He leans in, confidence seeping back into his body. "I was going to say that they flatter you…though your face truly doesn't need flattering, as you're incredibly beautiful already."

She cannot form the words, what's more the coherency, to answer. His blunt answer is so unexpected that all she can manage to do is gape at him in shock…and wonder.

Scorpius fidgets in his seat—he's clearly feeling awkward now.

"Err…" he croaks, flustered, "Y-you can box me now."

And then, their eyes lock, and neither can look away. The moment is suddenly frozen in time. She is not Weasley, and neither is he Malfoy. They are Rose and Scorpius, sharing one trait that blood can never penetrate—a gaze.

Something definitely passes between them then…

But, just as soon as it passes, Rose Weasley snaps.

"What the hell are you playing at, Malfoy!?"

He blanches, not having an adequate answer to her false accusation.

"Why are you doing this? What's in it for you?"


"Don't even start."

And with one sweeping motion, she has gathered her things and stomped from the room, leaving his essay behind and incomplete.

Though he can care less about Patroni.

It's more his heart he's worried about.

The two lovers soar higher into the dark, heavenly abyss. Though, now, she hears noises from below, from the distant land she has long since abandoned. She pays no mind to the calling voices, for she feels safe in his strong arms, safe in his love. He'll never leave her. Love will prevail, naturally…or it should.

Rose blinks. How has she found herself here again? For weeks, she refused to apologize, yet hear she is, waiting anxiously for him to emerge from the Slytherin locker room again. She has told Albus and the others countless times that she is through with helping them with their essays due to the coming N.E.W.T.s. In fact, she has not corrected one since the night she helped Scorpius…

Despite how she yearns not to admit it, she had been flattered by his words that night. But they hurt her, as well, for there is no way in Heaven or Hell that Scorpius had truly meant what he said. No boy has ever been so honest with her before, but she can't believe he was honest with her, either, no matter how she wishes to believe he was. He's a Slytherin, a Malfoy, and an embarrassment to the name of wizard. Nothing can change that.

Can it?

When he spots her waiting for him after exiting the changing rooms, he narrows his eyes and begins to walk away, his broom hanging loosely from his hand at his side. She watches, almost tearing up, as he continues on his way. He looks hurt, shattered. Has she done that to him?


He flinches, but, otherwise, he might not have heard her at all.

She doesn't know why she feels she must do this, but she races after him, wanting, needing to make him turn around.

"Oh, come on, this is stupid!"

He still doesn't pay her any mind. She only increases her speed, reaching only a few meters behind him.

"Please, Scorpius…"

He halts abruptly, and it takes all of her not to ram smack into him as she somehow manages to steady herself to a rough stop just a centimeter behind the tail of his broom. She wonders what does the trick, what makes him stop. Perhaps, he stops just to tell her to leave him alone, or he is annoyed with her…perhaps, both…

Or, maybe, it's because she calls him by his first name for the first time in her life.

It most definitely surprises her.

They simply stand there, one behind the other, for many-a-beat, both waiting for the other to say something.

Scorpius finally does.

"What do you want, Weasley?"

He still hasn't turned around to face her, and it's all Rose can do not to break down. Why is she acting this way? Why does she feel like sobbing her eyes out…over him? She hardly knows him.

She hardly knows him at all…

"I wish to apologize."

She hears him swallow slowly. "Well, get on with it, then."

On a normal day, she would have snapped back at him for saying that, but this is no normal day. And, besides, she deserves it.

"I'm sorry," she begins in little more than a whisper, her head hanging low, "I-I'm sorry I acted that way…I just…I-I just thought you…I thought you were…"

"Like my father?"

He turns around, and she almost wishes he hasn't. He looks completely torn and empty, and she can't prevent a tear from glistening in her eye and streaming down her cheek. The moistness of his own eyes is enough to break anyone's heart.

And she realizes her heart is no exception.

"He's no father of mine."

Before she can prevent him or realize what he has said, he is tromping forward again, leaving her behind as the rain begins to pour upon the Earth in sudden heaps. Where have the clouds come from? They weren't there a moment before, yet, now, seconds later, she is soaked, chilled to the bone.

Though she can care less about the wetness—she's no stranger to the rain. And, apparently, neither is Scorpius.

It's more her heart she's worried about.

The closer they become, the more difficult it is to control their blissful flight. The wind picks up violently, like a pebble accelerating to the ground from the highest castle turret, and their grip on each other loosens against their will. The more she fights to cling on, the more she loses him, loses her only light in the darkness of her sinking world. The air proves heavier with its speed, and she finds herself plunging downward into the lost, broken world she had left to waste. He is gone, gone from her grasp, gone from her soul…though she aches for him with every beat of her bleeding heart.

She blinks. Her hazel orbs haven't left her dorm window for over an hour. As she watches the sun set, flashing its breathtaking shades of blues and reds, oranges, pinks, and purples over the grounds before it falls beyond the horizon, her mind wanders to a form topped with a similar colour to the sun's fading golds on the plain. His hair is just the same hue, and his laugh reflects the same brightness as the dying light. His image vanishes from her mind as the sun echoes its final farewell. A single tear falls from her eye, followed by another, and another, until a salty stream flows down her cheeks and into her lap. She misses the beauty of the sun's goodbye, misses the blonde male's golden locks and smile. She hopes the sun will rise again the next morning, praying it will reflect his warming beams. Every night, she prays the same prayer.

The sun hasn't risen yet. Not for her.

Rose has had weeks to think about the Slytherin boy, and, with those thoughts have come emotions she has never felt before, ones she has never imagined could possibly rise from within her stubborn, Gryffindor soul. She wants to know him, know his eccentricities, his likes, dislikes, his fears, wants, needs…

His heart…

"Rosie, are you feeling alright?"

She chokes a laugh through her tears. "Yes, I'm…I-I'm…" With one sudden and shaky movement, she's turned around to face her best friend.

"Oh, bother this—no, I'm not alright. Beth, I feel terrible."

Elizabeth Vesely gathers her frail friend in her arms and rocks her back and forth, letting Rose confess everything, allowing her to cry for herself, for her life, his life, her worries, his worries, her past, his past…

And her love. Her love for him.

She's fallen in a pit of guilt, of worry, doubt and pain. But she picks herself up and stands tall—for she is not a stranger to the rain.

She blinks. She blinks her tears, then blinks the darkened sky's kisses from her eyes, salt and rain mixing into one river of pain. The lake before her is a pool home to many wonders, be they merpeople or giant squids. Though none of its secrets show themselves as the raindrops splash against the lake's surface, they remain imprisoned under the monstrous expanse stretching on up to the mountains and into the sea.

And there he is, making his way carefully down the slippery slope from the castle, his clothes already drenched and his curly fringe moped across his forehead. He's heading her way…perhaps he saw her crying from the castle window before exiting through the front doors. She can hardly see him through the storm, even when he's merely a foot away from her.

"Scorpius?" she mutters, though, surely, he cannot hear her through the heavy shower. And yet, she sees a blurry head nod at her, confirming her hope.

She hears him loud and clear, and his words stab at her heart with ceaseless ferocity:

"Father left my mum when I was born. But he kept me. He beats me. He tells me that people like you are filth, traitors. He calls your dear mum a mudblood. Ever heard that term before? Pureblood is almost as bad, now a days. But you know that. You've judged me by that, by my father, Draco Malfoy, the death eater, the one who almost killed the great Dumbledore. Grandfather killed my gran just after the war—you know that, as well. But did you know your famous uncle, Potter, gave him the Avada just afterwards? He killed Lucius Malfoy. Orders from the Head Auror, apparently. But you don't care, do you? Good riddance, right?"

Rose is just barely holding herself together, for she realizes that she has been so terribly narrow-minded since the day she was born. She wants to die right then and there and become a secret of the lake, drowning in the prison of its murky depths.

Scorpius grabs her forearm, forcing her to stumble close to him. His eyes are glued to hers, trying to figure her out. She wishes he could, but how? She can't figure Rose Weasley out, herself.

"Why have you judged me?" he cries, and Rose wonders if he actually is shedding tears, but she can't distinguish tears from raindrops even if she tries. "All I've ever done is love you all these years. Did you know that? Yeah, I'm effing in love you. From a distance, I've come to see just how wonderful you are. I love you so much, it hurts, Rose. Why is way beyond me, because, up close, you're just like the rest of them. Yet, I still feel everything for you. But that doesn't matter, does it? I'm just a pureblood, a Malfoy, a disgrace."

He pulls her even closer, so close that his face is only inches from hers.

"Why, Rose? You don't even know me."

Yet in that moment, she does. She knows him better than ever before. She knows he's not like his father, he's not like the boy her parents have always warned her about. He grew up in a household similar yet vastly different from her own. Both her family and his are vessels of prejudice. But Scorpius has abandoned that.

And now, so has she.

"You're wrong," she manages through a sob, laying a hand on his cheek and brushing a soggy lock of hair from his face. Though wet and slippery, his skin feels warm and soft against hers. She may not have loved him from a distance, but she most certainly loves him up close.

A roar of thunder sounds through the sky from every direction, but neither youth notice. Just as the gap between them begins to disappear, Rose whispers with complete honesty, her humid breath warming his lips:

"I'm so sorry."

When their moist lips collide, the barrier of blood between them shatters, love being the only emotion still bleeding forth from their hearts. The rain stops…at least, for them. The drops continue to soak them to the bone, but they can care less about the rain. They're no strangers.

It's more their hearts they're worried about.

The kiss is soft and gentle at first as they relish in the feeling of their touch. Rose continues to cry, but she stops when she feels him smile against her lips, reassuring her, bringing comfort to her through her inner storm. Rose moves her free hand to his neck, glistening erotically from the rain, and deepens the kiss, feeling as if the lightning flashing around them has electrified her with passion. With his hands now digging into her waist, urging her to press tighter against him, his tongue glazes her lips, seeking entrance. She nibbles tenderly at his bottom lip before gladly inviting him in and experiencing love on a deeper level. As his kisses travel around her face like a merry-go-round, Rose tugs at his wet hair, not knowing what to do with herself…yet not caring. He pursues her neck and open shoulder, his wet kisses leaving marks of wonder upon her skin, before finding her lips again, uniting them, not just as Rose and Scorpius, but also as lion and serpent, Rose Weasley and Scorpius Malfoy.

They continue expressing their love for several more minutes…or is it hours? Days? Neither cares how long. It may be forever, and they will still be content in each other's arms. The rain washes away their pasts and futures, only leaving behind the present for them to cherish with everything they are. They hardly know each other, yet they know with every pulsated breath that they want, need to know more. This is their moment, Romeo and Juliet, together—and alive— at last.

The rain dies down, only spitting now as they break away, though still caught up in a tight embrace.

Scorpius breathes in her ear, his breath ragged, "Are you sure you want this?"

She stares deep into his eyes, so vibrant and full of life, kind, thoughtful, and completely different than she had previously imagined. As Rose enjoys the feel of his wet body against hers, his strong arms encircling her protectively, willing never to let her go, she has no doubt in her mind when she leans in for another kiss:

"I'm absobloodylutely certain."

Her sun has risen through the rain, reflecting his warming beams.

:Spring 2088:

Rose blinks. Once. Twice. Three blinks of the eye, and he's gone forever.

She places her withered hands above her heart and shuts her eyes, feeling the rain sprinkle on the shoulders of her dark dress and bleed down her aged bosom, landing almost silently on the cathedral steps. The hearse has long disappeared around the corner of the busy London street, yet her gaze hasn't left the spot. He's been carried away to a better place...yet it's eternally painful to let him go before her.

He will be buried beside his father. Just beside him, with a foot's gap between.

As the rain begins to pick up its pace, she steps down a few slippery stairs, opens her eyes, then gazes up at the sky, toward the heavens, toward her love. She blinks the falling rain from her eyes, then closes them once more, smiling as he had against her lips those many years ago.

He requested she be buried among his own ashes. One with him, with no gap between.

She'll soar with him again soon. But in the meantime…

Let it rain...

Author's Note: How was it, folks? Yea or nay? Anything stick out? Did it hit home for you? Do you feel wet? XD Please REVIEWwith any comments, questions, critiques, irrelevant banters...or what-have-you. I would strongly appreciate ANY feedback, good and bad! Oh, and don't forget to check out hermionegarner's stories, as well! She's only a few clicks away. Check back for my story, Slytherin Song, if you want more. Thank you so much for reading!