Chapter Six

If there was one thing Rose Weasley knew, in all of her infinite wisdom, it was that Scorpius Malfoy had quite possibly the most comfortable lap to sleep on. Not that she frequently made a point of falling asleep on another people…in fact, she couldn't remember ever being in a similar position before. Nevertheless, despite the lack of any other referent examples, Rose believed Scorpius' lap to be quite a nice place to rest her head and get some sleep.

So, needless to say, she was not at all pleased to be disturbed from her sleep; especially a disturbance in the form of a sharp finger poking her in the shoulder.

Rose was on the verge of fumbling for her wand to curse the person who dared disturb her slumber into oblivion, when she realized that the person poking her could very well be Madame Pince, aka The Cranky, Old Librarian Who Was Very Capable of Giving Rose a Detention and Forever Ruining Her Previously-Squeaky-Clean School Record. And so, at this sudden realization, Rose forgot all about her wand and jerked upright so fast that she practically fell off the couch. Luckily, however, she caught herself just in time.

"You alright, Rosie?" A concerned-sounding voice asked.

Rose frowned at this; that was most definitely not the librarian's voice. And that was when her gaze fell on her cousin, standing before her hand-in-hand with her best friend.

"Al?" She questioned, still slightly disoriented from her sleep. "What are you doing here?"

"You never came back to the Common Room," Alice informed her, "We were concerned. And then we got your message about being trapped in the library, so we came looking for you."

"The door was locked," Rose replied, confusion etched on her face. "How did you two get in?"

"We didn't have any problem with the door," Albus told his cousin. "Must have been yours and Scorpius' imaginations that it wouldn't open," He grinned suddenly. "Tell me, Rosie, is there a reason you and my lovely friend there 'couldn't open the door?'"

Rose's eyes widened as she realized the position that the pair had just found her in. This was so not how she had been planning on breaking the news to anyone in the family, even if this was only Al, whom she suspected would be quite pleased once he found out his favorite cousin was dating his best friend. Perhaps it would be best to keep the secret just that—a secret—for a bit longer…

"It was locked," Rose said hurriedly, standing up in an attempt to put some distance between herself and the platinum blonde still sleeping on the couch. "Obviously it isn't anymore, so I think I'll just be going to bed now."

"What's going on?" Scorpius asked groggily, rubbing his eyes with his hands. Rose figured her movement must have awakened him.

"Good morning, Scorpius," Albus said cheerfully. "Although, it's not quite morning yet…But never mind that, how did you sleep?"

Scorpius looked from his (secret) girlfriend to his best friend and then to the aforementioned best friend's (not-so-secret) girlfriend. Confusion seemed to be the theme tonight.

"What's going on?" He repeated, his gaze finally resting on Rose.

"Apparently Albus and Alice found a way into the library," Rose told him, "Through the door."

"The locked door?" Scorpius questioned.

"The very same," Rose replied.

"Clearly you two are delusional," Alice informed the previously peacefully-sleeping pair. "That door was definitely not locked when we got here."

"Yes, well, I have no idea how that worked out for you," Rose said hurriedly, "But I do believe I really will be getting to bed now."

"Aw, c'mon, Rosie," Alice said, practically begging, "Let's stay up and chat for a bit; it's much too early to be going to bed."

"We have to get up for classes tomorrow morning," Rose reminded her friend. "Besides, what on earth would we talk about?"

"Oh, I don't know," Alice began slowly, pulling a chair out from underneath a nearby table as she spoke, pulling it over to the couch and sitting down, "What have the two of you been up to in here all night?"

"Yes," Albus agreed, pulling his own chair up next to his girlfriend's. "You two seemed quite a bit cozier than how I left you."

"I…uh…" Rose was at a loss for words. She turned to Scorpius with a pleading look on her face.

"We lost track of time," He told Alice and Albus quickly. "Both of our watches stopped working, so we ended up getting locked in here by Pince." His expression suddenly changed as if he'd just remembered something, "But you got our message, didn't you?"

"Yep," Albus said, popping the 'p.' He turned to his cousin. "You know I hate that cat."

"Crookshanks was a lovely cat," Rose informed her cousin airily, sinking back into the couch, but trying to stay as far away from Scorpius as possible. "Just because you're clearly a suspicious character doesn't mean you need to take it out on his memory."

"Yeah, positively radiant, that cat," Albus said with a snort. "Change of topic, though: what have you two been up to in here?"

"Studying, homework, attempting to break out," Scorpius listed. "Why do you keep asking?"

"No reason," Albus said innocently. "No reason at all. Tell me: how would you describe the relationship between the two of you?"

"Relationship?" Rose repeated dubiously. "Is 'life-long rivals' a relationship?"

"I was more looking for star-crossed lovers," Albus admitted. "But I suppose I can live with your description, for now."

Rose looked at her cousin strangely. "Are you feeling alright, Al? It is getting pretty late; perhaps you should go to bed."

"Nonsense," Albus told her. "I'm fine."

"Well," Rose began, standing up in the process, "I do believe I really will be going to bed now; I have to be up early tomorrow, and I'm sure I'll be up late again working on that stupid Potions assignment."

Rose swung her schoolbag full of books over her shoulder and took two steps towards the exit before turning back to the three other sixth years' still seated.

"Are you staying with Al, Alice, or am I going to have to entrust his care to Malfoy?" She asked.

"I think I'll stay up a bit longer, live a little," Alice said, "It's not every night my dad goes home and I can be a bit rebellious."

"Alright then," Rose said. "'Night Al, Alice; see you tomorrow." She turned to Scorpius then and gave him a curt nod. "Malfoy."

"Weasley," Scorpius intoned in his usual drawl.

Rose turned back around and finally left the library without another word. Once she was gone, Scorpius stood up as well.

"Well," He began, "If you're still going to be ditching me for your girlfriend, Al, I do believe I'll be heading off to bed as well. I'm positive you'll be sure to have a pleasant evening, even without my wonderful company."

Scorpius, too, put his bag over his shoulder and followed Rose's path out of the library. Once she was quite sure that the blonde was gone, Alice turned to her boyfriend and hit him over the head.

"Idiot," She informed him. "That was total overkill on your attempt to live up to your house and be all sly and cunning."

Albus merely sighed, absentmindedly rubbing the back of his head. "Well that was a bit of a failure."

"I'll say," James' voice suddenly said. Both Albus and Alice turned around to find James walking out from behind one of the bookshelves, closely followed by Fred, Roxanne, Lily, and Hugo. "I knew we should have taken a different approach to confronting them."

"Maybe not," Roxanne said thoughtfully, her gaze unfocused in the general direction Scorpius and Rose had disappeared in. "They looked awfully cozy for being life-long rivals, if you ask me."

"We don't have any solid evidence to prove anything, though," Lily said, sounding defeated.

"Bummer," Hugo agreed with a nod. "I so could have finished my Charms essay by now, too."

Lily merely rolled her eyes and chose not to point out the obvious to him as she had already done several times tonight alone. Clearly procrastination was not key to academic success, but Hugo just didn't seem able to accept that sad fact of life.

"I think Rose and Scorpius will come clean eventually," Alice spoke up now. "We all know that something happened between them, and it was definitely something big, so I'm sure they'll want to see each other again. The school year is almost over, though, so if they have any plans of seeing each other before next September, they're going to have to tell someone something sometime soon. Unless, of course, they plan to sneak behind our backs and secretly date, or something."

"It's only a matter of time," Albus agreed. "They'll tell us."

They all lapsed into a thoughtful silence, until Fred finally spoke up.

"Now that we've assumedly finally gotten Rosie and Malfoy together," He began, "What on earth are we going to have to amuse ourselves with, since we haven't got any proof that they're together and therefore no ammo for teasing?"

"We agreed from the start that there would be no teasing," Roxanne reprimanded her brother sternly, before a smile cracked her face. "At least, not right away."

"We'll just have to find some other way to pass the time," Lily said to the group at large. "Maybe we could finally find someone for Uncle Charlie, like we planned to do years ago?"

"Are you kidding?" James said, a grin slowly spreading across his face. "We've already established that Rosie and Malfoy are eventually going to have to admit there's something going on between them, so do you know what that means?"

The assembled group of his family members plus Alice just looked at him cluelessly.

"Rose still has to tell Uncle Ron about how she's dating a Malfoy; this is going to provide enough entertainment to last for years."

a/n-Between this and A Divine Gift for the Winner, James Potter is shaping up to be quite the Seer, that's all I'm going to say on the matter. Oh, that, and Family. Coming soon...