the end will justify the means
Don't say goodbye
Cause I don't wanna hear those words tonight
Cause maybe it's not the end for you and I
- Don't Say Goodbye, Skillet
Things are changing, and she's not sure if she likes it.
Growing up, they were one of those bickering couples that you groaned at because you knew they would end up together (she was in Gryffindor, just like her mother, and he was in Slytherin, just like his father, though neither of them wanted to be their parents). They used to be friends of a sort, in fact. Well, actually, they were part of that 'new' Golden Trio- have you heard of it? Rose, Scorpius, and Albus.
But after school, contrary to popular belief, Scorpius and Rose did not go off and get married. To be concise, they had not heard head or tail from each other since the ending of their seventh year. They went off, went their separate ways, and broke the cliché in that way. Because for once, the 'Golden Couple' didn't end up together.
By this point in time, he certainly had a wife, or at least a girlfriend. He'd always been quite the good looking boy, and during the period of their friendship, he'd dated almost every girl he could get his hands on.
So now they're totally separate people. Rather than Rose-and-Scorpius, that amazing couple that everyone wants to get together, she's Rose Weasley. The girl who didn't keep in touch with her two best friends, even though one was her cousin, after she left school. The bad friend, to put it neatly. Life is uncontrollable.
Things already have changed, and she's not sure that she likes it.
But oh well, it's uncontrollable, so what can she do about it?
When she sees his name on the list below hers, she inhales sharply. Really, a volunteer sign up sheet for a trip to a Wizarding Orphanage is the last place she expects to see that name.
But there it is, in his neat print that hasn't changed at all since high school. Scorpius Malfoy.
She knows it's him, because who else would be strange enough to call their son that?
In truth, she'd only signed up for the excursion because her flatmate and favourite cousin, Molly Weasley, had encouraged her to get out more. Reluctantly, she'd agreed. And when she'd seen that sign-up sheet for the orphanage, she'd written her name at the very top of the list, since she loves kids.
But now his name is on there too.
So they'll be going together, with only about five other people.
Seeing each other for the first time in four years.
It was obvious, back then that they could've been a love story, they would've been a love story, and they should've been a love story. But they just weren't a love story.
And now they're having another chance.
But she's not sure what she wants anymore.
Days pass by in the blink of an eye as the day approaches. That day on her calendar glares up at her, written in bright red ink. Visit to Orphanage. Note to self- wear best clothes.
Laughing, Molly asks her why, because they're orphans and it'll make them feel bad if she's all dressed up. Shrugging, Rose just replies that she wants to look her best.
Then, it's the day before the day she's meant to go, and she's all but freaking out. Finally, Molly grabs her arm. "What's going on, Rose? Why are you so worried? You're just going to an orphanage, and I'm sure the kids will love you. You've always had a thing for kids."
Brown eyes wide, she shakes her head meaningfully. "It's not about the children, Molly. It's about who else is going to be there."
"Ooh," Molly teases in that way of hers. "There's going to be a boy there?"
Trying not to slump over, she says seriously, "Yes, a boy that I haven't seen for quite a large amount of time."
"It couldn't be…" Molly's jaw almost drops to the ground. "SCORPIUS MALFOY IS GOING?"
Turning red, Rose just nods once. "I don't know why. His name was on the sign-up sheet though."
Dancing around, Molly begins to laugh. "You're going on a date with Scorpius!"
"Hush," Rose shushes her cousin. "He probably doesn't know that I'm even going. And it's not a date. Other people are going too."
Molly just shakes her head. "He probably saw your name on the sign-up sheet, and he decided to go."
"He would not do that," Rose disagrees. But in her head, she hopes a little.
The next day rolls around, and before she knows it, the Portkey is dumped outside of her house. It's a sparkly clean piece of metal equipment. Groaning, Rose grasps the object.
Suddenly, there's a jerking sensation just below her navel. The world is spinning and the wind is blowing her freshly flattened red hair. Everything's sp-sp-spinning….and then the colours blur around her before her feet touch something sold before she lands, face first, on the ground. She hasn't yet gotten the hang of Portkeying.
Suddenly, a pale hand stretches down to her. "Need a hand?"
"Sure," She gasps before she looks up at the person's face. A bunch of shaggy, white-blonde hair hangs in the lad's face. A pair of grey eyes bear into hers.
He seems even more surprised than she, pointing the fact that he hadn't known she was going to be there. Which disappoints her a little bit, but oh well. His eyes seem to light up. "ROSE? Rose Weasley? You're here?"
"In the flesh," She confirms, smiling a small lopsided smile. "Scorpius Malfoy. Long time, no see."
"Seriously," He answers, pulling her up off the ground. As she stands up, she realises that he's become quite tall, and though he still has his skinny figure, there's a bit more muscle than before.
Cocking her head to stare at him, she asks, "Why are you here?"
"I love orphans, Rose, don't you remember?" He answers, flashing her an innocent smile.
She frowns. "Don't play that with me, Scorpius. I remember you, how you were in school at least. You didn't care about anyone other than yourself."
"Perhaps I've changed," He shrugs, smirking and looking a lot like his father.
"My bum, you've changed," She scoffs, crossing her arms and giving him a stare reminiscent of a mother.
"Fine," Scorpius rolls his eyes. "I got in some trouble with the Ministry, all right?"
Her mouth falls open. "ARE YOU INSANE? Scorpius Hyperion Malfoy, all this time I thought that you were doing all right, and here you are making trouble with the rulers over the Wizarding World! Merlin, Scorpius! What did you do?"
"Lay off, Rose, all right?" He sighs, staring at the ground. When she doesn't say anything, he continues. "I got in trouble because they thought my father was up to something…. Death Eater activities, you know. So I sort of set a hex on him and the Ministry got pretty mad at me. This…. community service was the only way to get out of a one-way ticket to Azkaban. Besides," he smiles a lopsided smirk, "kids always love me."
Ignoring his previous statement, Rose shrieks, "They insulted your father? And then punished you for defending him?"
"Obviously," Scorpius groans. "I've always told you that the Ministry was corrupt, haven't I, my dear Rose?"
Realization struck her then. "Merlin, Scorpius! I don't mean to interrupt your criticism of the Ministry or anything, but we're going to be late!"
The two of them took off toward the orphanage, red and blonde hair flying behind them and merging to form a combination of strawberry blonde.
Once they reach the orphanage, the head of the program stares threateningly at them. "Ms. Weasley, Mr. Malfoy. Glad to know you're still alive."
"Terribly sorry, Mrs. Zabini," Scorpius salutes her. "We promise never to be late again, my beautiful head."
She blushes, stumbling over her words, though Scorpius is terribly young. "Yes, well, you'll have to work on that, won't you? Anyway, the two of you must get to work immediately. The orphans are right through that door."
Orphan. The word slashes at the back of her throat like a sword. Her own almost-cousin (he was almost like her cousin) Teddy's an orphan. Her uncle Harry is an orphan. All these orphans, but they had hope. What about these orphans, the ones that had no one? When they got older and went to Hogwarts, much like Tom Riddle and Harry, they would make Hogwarts their home. But until then, what would happen to them?
She sniffles once. Throwing her a confused look, Scorpius pats her back softly, and they enter the room.
Of course the children are all adorable. One of them, a girl with dark red curls and pretty grey eyes, situates herself on Rose's lap.
"You're pretty," She announces. "And I like your hair! It's like mine!"
"Thank you," Rose blushes. "What's your name?"
"I'm Rhini, and I'm eight," Rhini tells her proudly. "I don't know my parents, though. Have you met them? At school, my friends talk about their mommy and daddy. What's your name?"
"I'm Rose," Rose replies, staring at the girl in sympathy. "I'm sorry, but I don't know your mum. I wish I did, though."
Rhini nods sadly. "No one seems to. They all say she's gone. If I knew my mum, I'd like her to be like you, cause you're nice."
Swelling with pride, Rose blushes and lets her curls spill into her face. "Aw, thank you. I wish…"
Scorpius interrupts her, plopping beside the small girl. "Hey, Rose, who's this?"
"I'm Rhini," Rhini declares, seemingly unafraid. "Are you her boyfriend? Oh, I hope you are!"
Turning red (now it's his turn), Scorpius shakes his head and shoots an amused glance at Rose. "Um, I'm not, sorry. We're just friends that haven't seen each other for a very long time."
"Oh," Rhini seems to deflate. "Your eyes are like mine, you know."
Peering into the young girl's eyes, Scorpius exclaims, "Merlin, they are! You wouldn't happen to be related to the Malfoy family, would you?"
Rhini shrugs glumly. "I wouldn't know."
Scorpius' eyes catch Rose's for a fraction of a second before he sighs. "You're the cutest little girl ever, did you know?"
She grins at him. "Want to meet my best friend?"
"We would love to," Rose replies, grabbing Scorpius' arm to coax him along. But when she does so, she feels something weird. Throughout her years at school, she'd often touched Scorpius- in a playful way or with the intention to hurt. But never before had she felt anything. What is this feeling? Frowning, she just keeps walking, trying to forget about it- and the funny look that's on Scorpius' face too.
A boy, who seems to be a good two years older than eight-year-old Rhini, is sitting in a corner, all brown hair and blue eyes, looking like a miniature version of Lysander or Lorcan. Glancing up nervously, he asks (without even so much as making eye contact with Scorpius or Rose), "Who are they, Rhini?"
"Relax, Cale," Rhini pats the young boy's shoulder. "They're all good. They're nice people, just like my mummy and daddy were."
"You don't know that," Cale hisses. "You don't know that your mum and dad were good."
"I do," Rhini responds confidently.
Scowling at her, Cale just shakes his head. "I'm Cale." Standing up to his full height, he just nods. "I suppose you're some more of those volunteers sent to make us feel good for a time before you Apparate back to your comfortable homes."
"I'm Rose," Rose answers, and glancing back at Scorpius, she notices something soften in his grey eyes. There's something in this boy that reminds her so much of Scorpius.
Kneeling down so that he's the younger boy's approximate height, Scorpius answers, "My life is anything but comfortable, but that doesn't mean I don't care about you and Rhini. I will do anything within my power to help you guys, I swear by it. I'm sure Rose will, too."
Put on the spot, Rose's eyes widen. However, she already has her mind set on this particular issue. She nods. "I would love to do all I can to help."
"We'll see about that," Cale responds icily. Turning back to his corner, he says, "See you soon then… or will I?"
Though they have the option of Portkeying home once again, Rose much prefers walking the 7 kilometres back to her home. Scorpius opts to join her, since they do have a lot to talk about.
"You meant it?" Rose inquires quietly, staring at him. "What you said to Cale?"
"Do I break my promises?" Scorpius answers her question with another question before blushing.
Shrugging, Rose reminds him, "Well, I haven't seen you for quite a while. But when I knew you… you did."
"Are you talking about that one incident?" Scorpius sighs. "I'm so, so sorry about that, Rose. And I swear I'll make it up to you someday."
It's too late. A single tear is already drifting down her face. Through the tears that start to fall, she accuses him, "You promised me that you'd wait for me, Scorpius. You said we'd be friends forever and stay in touch. What happened to that?"
"I'm here now, aren't I, Rose?" Scorpius says slowly, reaching out and wiping the tears from her face. "And I promise you I'm here to stay. Even if this started out as some punishment, it isn't now."
"Well," Rose responds, pushing his hand away stubbornly and crossing her arms around her chest. "What are we going to do for the orphanage? I would love to start a new one, where orphans are loved and cared for, but if that sounds like too much work for a Slytherin such as yourself-"
"Of course it's not too much work," Scorpius objects, crossing his arms so that he matches her. "What do I have to do? Oh, first, do you have any money?"
"Not enough to start an orphanage," She frowns apologetically. "I work as a Healer in a local hospital. Though it's a thoroughly rewarding job, I don't get paid a lot for it."
"Oh," Scorpius taps his foot against the pavement as he walks. "Well, there's always my father-"
"No!" Rose objects before he could even finish. Glaring at him, she states simply, "I am not going to your father and asking for money, Scorp."
He raises an eyebrow. "Why not?"
"It's almost like begging," Rose spits out the words as if they're poison to her very soul. "Weasleys don't beg for money from Malfoys, Scorpius. It's sort of a pride thing."
Rolling his eyes, Scorpius frowns. "What about Malfoys begging from Malfoys? That's fine, Rose. You don't have to come."
"Oh, yes, I do," Rose objects. "I'm just as much a part of this project as you are, Scorpius."
He grimaces again."Pride thing?"
"Sort of," She replies apologetically. Tapping her hand against her thigh as she walks, her face suddenly lights up. "How about we rob Gringotts?"
"Are you insane?" Scorpius replies, giving her a strange look. "Those goblins would eat us for dinner."
"Only partially," She sings. Scrunching her freckled face up in a way that implies she's thinking, she continues to think. Finally, she sighs. "Any other ideas?"
"Only that one," Scorpius shrugs apologetically.
Since she couldn't think of any other ideas, she sighs and gives in. "Fine, since there's nothing else, I'll go with you to beg for money." She scrunches up her nose as if she smells something terrible.
"So I suppose you're coming to my house, then," Scorpius smirks at her.
"You don't have to make it sound like that," Rose protests, slapping his shoulder and getting that weird feeling again. "Anyway, once we get the money, what will we do with it? It's not as if we have land to build it on."
"Actually," Scorpius fidgets, not meeting her eyes.
"What?" Rose exclaims. Oh, how she hates and loves the fact that he's rich. "Don't tell me you have a plot of land just waiting for you to do whatever you want with it."
"Actually, I do," Scorpius informs her, trying not to smile. "When my grandfather Lucius died, he left me quite the large plot of land. I would think that it's about the approximate size needed for an orphanage."
"You're serious," Rose barely meets his eyes. "You're stinking rich, Scorpius. Has anyone ever told you that? I mean, you have land. Poor me, having only a Muggle-born mother and a father whose family is poor. But I love it anyway, I mean, I'm not complaining. Even though neither of my parents are filthy rich."
Scorpius grins at her. "It comes in handy at times like this though, doesn't it?"
"It does," Rose confirms. "So when should I come to your house, then?"
"How about tomorrow?" Scorpius offers, smiling as if he knows she'll freak out. Which probably he does, considering he's known her since their very first year at Hogwarts, and he knows that everything sets her off.
"TOMORROW?" Rose shrieks. "Are you serious? That's so soon, and Merlin, I have to prepare and everything."
Scorpius stares at her, amused."You have to prepare to meet my father?"
"Your father is quite intimidating, Scorpius," Rose tells him, a bit distracted. Worry lines are starting to come out on her face. "Have you met him? Who am I kidding, of course you have!"
He grins as he watches her. "Don't worry, Rose. You'll be fine. I'll be sure to tell my intimidating father not to… well… intimidate you. But really, all we're doing is asking for money, how bad could it get?"
"Scorpius!" Rose reprimands him, starting to look even more worried.
"We can just show him that picture of the children and his heart will melt," Scorpius promises, beaming at her. "After all, my father's heart isn't made of stone- it's only ice."
"And ice can melt," Rose confirms, grinning at Scorpius.
Looking up, she realises that she recognizes the flat that's beside her as her own. She grins at Scorpius. "See you later, then?"
"See you tomorrow," He responds, smirking at her again in that annoying way that only he can. It's a bit infuriating, but a bit cute too.
"Fine," She mimics, frowning at him.
He leans over and plants a kiss on her cheek, causing both of her cheeks to flame up immediately. Her hand flies to cover them. "I'll see you tomorrow, Rose," He mutters, smirking again at her obvious revulsion.
"Shut up," She laughs, smiling now. "But yeah, see you tomorrow."
Waving, he turns and picks up a stray tin can from the lawn. Within seconds, he disappeared.
"He had the Portkey to his house all along," whispers Rose, obviously confused. Why hadn't he used it? He'd chosen to walk back 7 kilometres with her. Does that say something?
No, she thinks stubbornly. I've got to stop reading too far into things.
Suddenly, the door flies open, and her cousin comes flying out. "Rose! What was that?"
Rose shakes her head, clearing her mind of all thoughts of Scorpius Malfoy. "What was what?"
"Scorpius KISSED you!" She shrieks, face lighting up like she's just won some sort of prize. "I mean, I knew that he would be there with him, but seriously? You guys are in love or something? Are you dating? It's only been one afternoon!"
"Hush," Rose giggles, pulling her cousin into the house. "We're only friends, Molly. He kissed me because… I don't know…. we're kind of planning to start an orphanage together?"
Molly's eyebrow arches. "What?"
"We're planning to start an orphanage together," Rose repeats, blushing.
"When did this happen?"Molly demands, voice holding little emotion.
"Today," She replies under her cousin's confused gaze.
"So you're just going to drop everything and start planning… an orphanage? With him?" Her voice now holds hints of betrayal and hurt.
"I'm not dropping everything," She assures Molly, feeling relief. "I'm not leaving. It's still in the works. First, we have to get money, which of course his dad has plenty of."
Grinning again, Molly waggles her eyebrows. "Going to meet the father, eh?"
"Not like you don't have a nice love life," Rose grumps. "Lysander Scamander, anyone?"
"Hey!" Molly protests. "He's my boyfriend, I know, but you don't have to tease me about him all the time."
Laughing, Rose replies, "Oh, yes I do."
The two cousins begin to hit each other with pillows, and oh, everything's just perfect.
Or is it?
The next morning, Rose wakes up and realises what the day will bring. Quickly, she gets out of bed and brushes through her read curls before remembering that there's nothing she can do to them. She piles on makeup and ties a blue beaded necklace around her neck.
Sleepily, Molly joins her in the bathroom."What are you doing?"
"Getting ready to go to Scorpius' house," Rose responds.
"It's 7 AM," Molly reminds her, yawning.
"So?" Rose retorts, sweeping her curls up into a slick bun. "It's never too early to be ready, Molly."
Groaning, Molly just shakes her head and goes back to bed. The light is beginning to shine through the window, and Rose suddenly remembers that she hadn't given Scorpius a time.
"Oh, no," She mutters, when suddenly Molly's Muggle telephone rings. She hears her still-groggy cousin pick it up.
A few seconds later, Molly yells, "It's for you!"
"The telephone?" Rose asks dumbly.
"No, the hot dog," Molly replies sarcastically. "Yes, the telephone! Get yourself in here and answer it."
"All right," Rose answers guardedly, having never used a Muggle telephone before. Slowly, she walks over to it, turns it upside down, and finally hears a voice coming out of it. "Hello? Mum, how do you work this thing?"
Another voice merges with the young boy (oh no, it's Scorpius!)'s voice. "Scorpius! All you have to do is talk in the mouthpiece and… Merlin, you're doing that now! She can probably hear all we're saying! Go ahead, speak with her!"
Finally, Scorpius' voice comes on again. "Um. Hello, Rose. Sorry about that, I've never used a Muggle telephone before."
"Don't worry, me neither," She comforts him. "But what time should I come over?"
"That's what I was calling to speak to you about," he says briskly. "How about one?"
She glances down at her watch, realising it's only nearly nine. "Uh, sure, that's fine."
"Great!" Scorpius grins. "I'm supposing you can Apparate?"
"You were there when I passed the test, Scorpius," Rose replies, amused.
"Oh, yes," He replies, embarrassed. "So one o'clock then, at Malfoy Manor?"
"Sure," She tells him.
"Be prepared," He mutters ominously before hanging up the phone without so much as a goodbye.
Sighing, Rose turns back to her mirror. What's she supposed to do for a few hours now?
When one o' clock finally rolls around, Molly smirks at her (looking a lot like Scorpius, and she has to stop thinking about him, because she's only doing this for the kids). "Good luck."
"Sure, sure," Rose replies, and then she pictures Malfoy Manor clearly in her mind. There's a jerking feeling, and then suddenly the world blurs around her before she falls on the green grass outside of Malfoy Manor. Groaning at her newly muddied outfit, she thinks that she really need to learn how to get the landing right.
"Need a hand?" The deep voice offers again, and a pale hand stretches out to her.
"Look at my outfit!" She complains, dusting off her clothes that are soaked with mud. "How can I see your father like this?"
Grinning, he just wipes all of the mud off of her outfit with a simple spell. "Don't worry about it, Rose, you look beautiful."
She blushes again, muttering a quick "thanks" and following him into the humongous house. It billows around her, beautiful in all of its glory. The door swings open and she follows Scorpius inside.
"Ah, Miss Weasley," Draco Malfoy appears suddenly in the midst of the hallway, smiling coldly at her. "What a pleasure to have you here."
"Hello, Mr. Malfoy," She greets him, ignoring his biting sarcasm. "A pleasure to be here. I suppose Scorpius has informed you of the subject of this meeting?"
"I'd say he has," Draco claps his hands, staring at her. "Shall we take this to the parlour?"
Scorpius cuts in. "Father! Haven't I spoken to you about this?"
"Don't talk to your father like that, Scorpius," enters a fourth voice. A woman with brown hair and blue eyes smiles at Rose. "Little Weasley, it's nice to see you."
"Hello, Mrs. Malfoy," Rose smiles politely.
Frowning, Draco clears his throat. "Let's get down to business."
He leads them to a room with a few couches and some tea on a table. Scorpius offers Rose a seat, and she quickly sits down. Across from the two of them, Draco and Astoria sit down. Sipping his tea, Draco begins. "So, Scorpius, I have been informed that this meeting is about money."
"More about the lack of it," Rose inserts herself, trying to lighten the mood. Everyone shoots her funny looks, so she sinks back into her chair.
"Yes, Father, we're trying to start up a business of sorts," Scorpius explains, looking uncomfortable.
Draco cocks one perfectly straight, blonde eyebrow. "A business, you say? What sort of business?"
"An orphanage, Father," Scorpius replies, not meeting his father's eyes.
"AN ORPHANAGE?" The expression on Draco's face was something of a mix between horror and disbelief. "An orphanage, you say? How will this bring prestige to the family name? An orphanage? What money have you to start it up with?"
"That's why we came to you, dear Father," Scorpius answers, head bent.
"To beg for money for your orphanage?" Draco turns his nose up in scorn.
Beside him, Astoria walks slowly up to her husband, placing a hand on his shoulder. "Draco, if I may share my own input, I think this is a good idea. Finally, a Malfoy does something good for the community! We would have more prestige as welcoming members of the community."
"Not to mention the children are quite adorable," Scorpius pleads.
"Please, sir," Rose joins in. "If you could only see the children… they're very much like your son, one has the same eyes as you…"
"The same eyes?" Draco raises his eyebrows. "I'll believe it when I see it."
Stepping over to Scorpius' chair, Rose whispers in his ear, "Perhaps we should bring the children here."
"How can we?" Scorpius answers, turning to face her.
"Side-along Apparition," She shrugs.
"But that's incredibly dangerous!" Scorpius hisses back. "Do you have that level of experience?"
Rose, who's nearly in tears because the future of her orphanage is in danger, hisses back, "What other choice do we have, Scorpius?"
"I suppose there's no other choice," Scorpius agrees reluctantly. Staring at her in that blazing way of his, he tells her, "All right, go ahead. But if you're not back in ten minutes…."
His voice breaks as his sentence trails off. With a start, Rose realises that it's not only Rhini and Cale that he's concerned about, but her too. She doesn't truly understand why- he's only seen her for two days now. But still, she nods and pictures the orphanage clearly in her mind.
Then she's spinning, spinning, leaving her world behind, at least until she hits the sort of carpeted floor at the orphanage. Immediately, Rhini rushes over to her. "ROSIE! YOU'RE BACK!"
"Yes, Rhini, I am," She responds tiredly, brushing dirt off her face. "Now, where's Cale?"
"Over there," Rhini points one chubby finger at the brunette boy, who's slumped against a pillow.
"Go get him," Rose commands. She knows she's probably being quite rude, but at the moment, she doesn't care a bit.
"All right," Rhini replies, confused. Dashing over to the corner, she grabs Cale. "COME ON, CALE! Rosie has returned! I told you she would!"
"You're kidding," Cale replies, but he jerks up and walks over to her. His eyes widen. "You're actually back. Unbelievable."
"Hurry," Rose urges. "Grab my hand."
"Why?" Cale replies suspiciously, taking hold of her hand anyway. Eagerly, Rhini grabs her other hand.
Squeezing her eyes shut, Rose pictures the room they were just in at Apparition, hoping silently that nothing would go wrong.
Please, please, they're just innocent children, don't let anything happen to them, I love them, we need them, this was my decision, not theirs, please-
But then her thoughts are cut off and she's thrown onto the floor. Beside her falls two children, both thankfully in perfect shape. Rubbing her eyes, Rhini stands up. Cale stands up too.
"Where are we?" Cale demands.
"Father," Scorpius says proudly, ignoring the young boy, "I would like you to meet my two young comrades, the orphans. This is Cale and Rhini. Please, if you will, take a close look at Rhini's eyes."
A little bit worried, Draco stands up from his seat and walks over to the girl, who was babbling away. "Hey, who are you? You look a lot like that Scorpio boy! Are you his twin? Did you know he has a girlfriend? His eyes are just like mine, and so are yours!"
"They are," Draco gasps. Staring at Rhini, he asks slowly, "Are you related to the Malfoys?"
"How should I know?" Rhini asks stubbornly. "I don't know my family. They're gone, that's what they said." Still smiling, she reaches out and grasps his pinky. "Do you want to be friends?"
"I'm Mr. Malfoy," He says. "And you are?"
"Rhini," She announces, not sounding terrified like Rose was at all. "You're Scorpio's daddy, then?"
"That I am," Draco drawls. His eyes catch sight of Cale. "And you are?"
"I'm Cale," Cale mutters, suspiciously drawing his eyes to Draco's face. "Do you live here?"
"Yes, this is my home," Draco replies, still studying the boy. Finally, his eyes come up to look at Scorpius and Rose again. "Fine. I suppose I will give you some cash for this orphanage project. But no more favours for a while, then?"
Grinning, Rose jumps up to high-five Scorpius, who pulls her into a hug instead. Rhini joins the hug, then runs to Draco, who stands by himself. Rhini grins before she hugs his legs. "Thank you, Mr. Malfoy! It'll be great, you'll see!"
Amused, he looks down at her. "Yes, I suppose I will see."
Scorpius grins at Rose, who pats little Cale's head. This could turn out great….or interesting.
"What in the name of Merlin is this?" Rose exclaims as they arrive at Scorpius' 'piece of land'.
"I didn't say it was a nice piece of land," Scorpius shrugs apologetically as they gaze out at the field. It's not a nice field, though, as you would usually think of- it's littered with all sorts of junk and stuff. The grass, which sticks up from between broken potion cauldrons and used robes, is a dark yellow colour. The trees, of which there are very few, grow at random places around the field, and are so obviously dying. There are no flowers. However, there are weeds that are scattered around at random intervals. Glass seems to beckon welcomingly to the two of them.
"You also didn't say it was a junkyard," counters Rose. Sticking her foot out as if she's scared to touch down, she tells Scorpius, "I'm a bit scared to go in there. Can't you just Accio it all away?"
"I wish," Scorpius replies glumly. "The stuff is all magic-repellent. So, to get it out, we have to go in there, pick it up, and bring it out. With our hands, there's no using magic at all. It's been cursed by some stupid wizard who wished pain for others."
Standing there with her hands on her hips, Rose scoffs. "This is what your grandfather left to you?"
Scorpius shrugs. "I never said my grandfather was a generous man."
"It's going to take a lot more than just the two of us to clean this whole thing up," Rose sighs, dusting off her hands even though she hasn't touched a thing.
"Well," Scorpius taps his head, indicating that he's thinking. "We have all the orphans, I'm sure they'd be glad to help if we told them what we're trying to do. Not to mention that family of yours- you have like 29832983 cousins, right? Not to mention their parents- and boyfriends and girlfriends."
Rose nods thoughtfully. "True. I suppose I could get them to all come down here. And, if they refuse, I have plenty of blackmail on all of them."
Beaming, Scorpius tells her, "Spoken like a true Slytherin."
Rose nods, glancing back out at the mess in front of her. "And it's going to take a combination of Gryffindor, Slytherin, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw, and any other made-up house to get rid of this mess."
"True," Scorpius replies, smirking again.
Her mum's fork clatters to the table. "You're starting an orphanage with Scorpius Malfoy?"
"Yes, mum," Rose replies, not bothering to hide her boredom with everyone's reactions.
"That's amazing!" Her mum shrieks, and Rose's ears perk up, because this isn't the reaction she'd gotten from her father and Hugo.
Her father has the same reaction. "What?"
"It's amazing, Ron!" Her mum shrieks. "Look, she's trying to make a difference in the world and help all of those wizarding orphans, you know, like Harry used to be! Not to mention she's breaking that boundary of rivalry that Salazar Slytherin set up all those years ago. Gryffindors and Slytherins can get along, you know, so I think it's wonderful!"
"Wonderful," repeats Ron in disbelief.
"Of course we'll help," Hermione offers her services. "I've been longing to do a project ever since SPEW was taken over by little Roxanne. In fact, I will personally offer all of us to do whatever you and Scorpius want you to."
"What?" Hugo shrieks.
"Don't you want to help some sweet little orphans?" Hermione growls, spinning on her heel to glare at her son.
"Look at the pictures, Mum," Rose grins smugly and sticks out her tongue at her little brother as she shows her mum pictures of Rhini and Cale.
So, yeah, her Mum's the easiest to convince.
Molly's a bit more difficult. Because of her parentage, she has a clear sense of logic and thought, so immediately she saw that cleaning up a field with no magic was not going to be fun.
"So, we're expected to walk around like common Muggles, cleaning up trash?" Molly asks, scrunching up her nose.
Scorpius, who Rose has dragged along with her since she knows that Molly won't be easy, sighs. "Come on, Molly. Don't you want to help some sweet little kids?"
"Sure," Molly shrugs. "But can't I just babysit or something of the like?"
"Lysander will be there," Rose reminds her with a smile. "And he told me he hopes that you'll be there."
"Does he really?" Molly says with an absentminded smile.
Grinning over at Scorpius, Rose whispers, "We've got her."
"Fine," Molly announces after mulling it over for a bit longer. "Fine, I'll go. But I can't tell you how much help I'll be of, since I'm a bit out of shape at the moment- writers don't usually get a lot of exercise, y'know. Besides, the kids look cute from the photos you've shown me."
"And Lysander's going to be there," Scorpius teases.
"Oh, shut up," She elbows the boy in the ribs. "Merlin knows that you want to help out Rose because you're in love with her or whatever it is called."
Scorpius throws up his pale, white hands. "I am not! Don't get all defensive on me!"
Chuckling, Rose mentally checks off Molly.
The rest of the family is fairly easy to convince. Lily loves children and is up for anything, Roxanne (much like her Aunt Hermione) loves helping the oppressed, James figures out that hot girls might be there, Louis hears that Natalie's coming (and Albus hears about Aquarius), Lucy thinks that she can help these children with their happy endings, Dominique thinks there will be plenty of prank opportunities, Victoire loves kids too, Fred wants to show the kids Weasley's Wizard Wheezes, and Teddy, the typical older brother, wants to play with the kids.
So the next Saturday, all of them show up at the field.
Dominique wrinkles her nose. "And what exactly are we expected to do with this field of junk?"
"We need to clean it," Rose announces, seizing control. "We have to make it clean enough for us to be able to build an orphanage on it."
Lily grins. "Can't we just Accio it all away and dump it in Malfoy's backyard?"
"Hey!" Scorpius protests, glaring at Rose's little cousin.
"It's magic repellant," Rose sighs. "Some idiot's idea of a prank. All right, shall we all work together and get this done then?"
"I suppose we shall," James sighs, glancing around as if he's trying to find the hot girls that are supposed to be there.
So they get down to work. In what looks as if it should be a garden, Rose works with Molly, Lucy, Lysander, Lorcan, and Scorpius.
"Ew!" Molly shrieks suddenly, jerking away from a flower and nearly landing on her bum.
"What?" Rose asks, nearly developing a case of the giggles.
"It's a spider!" Molly shrieks, backing up into Lysander, who wraps his arm around her and laughs.
"Look how small it is, Molls," Lysander teases, watching it crawl across the leaf. "It's just a tiny little thing."
"How are you not scared of it?" Molly yells.
Scorpius smirks. "Well, Weasley, they're Gryffindor- well, you should be too- meaning they're not scared of anything. I'm Slytherin, which means I have a soft spot for creepy crawlies."
"Ha, ha," Molly says sarcastically.
"Hey, don't use the endearing last name thing here," Rose warns, frowning at him. "We have three Weasleys here in this little circle. You might get mixed up."
"I could never get you mixed up with anyone," Scorpius informs her, and his eyes burn into her with this blazing intensity.
Shaking her head to clear whatever improper thoughts rush in, she just tries to smile. "I suppose you couldn't, Scorpius."
The kids arrive soon, and though it's the most terrible piece of land she's ever seen, they exclaim as if it's a beautiful garden. Rhini rushes over to her and Scorpius, dragging Cale by the hand.
"Rosie!" Rhini exclaims, rushing at her and wrapping her arms around the older girl's legs. "Is this where we're going to live? Once you get all of the stuff off, it'll look like a paradise!"
"Correction, once you get all the junk off, it'll look halfway decent," Cale interrupts, crossing his arms over his chest.
Laughing, Scorpius teases, "Oh, look, it's little Lorcan."
"This place is amazing," Rhini reprimands her friend. "We're going to live here!"
"Yes, you are," Rose tells her, sweeping the young girl up. Standing beside her, Scorpius wraps his arm around Rhini's back, and his hand barely brushes Rose's back.
He shoots her a quick smile, and her face flames up again. But no, no, no. This is for the children, and only for them. This has nothing to do with Scorpius Malfoy.
"Look at the sun!" Rhini exclaims, pointing a chubby finger at the sunset. "It's going down! Isn't that called a sunset?"
"Yes, it is," Scorpius confirms, and they sit down, Rhini beside Rose so that Cale grudgingly sits by Scorpius. Rose and Scorpius are beside each other.
Reaching over, he takes her hand in his and squeezes his lightly. In her head, she remembers how sunsets are supposed to be romantic and all. But this is hardly romantic, is it? They're just business partners, and perhaps they could be friends. Friends, acquaintances, business partners, that's all they are.
But hey, it feels good to have the Scorpius in Scorpius-and-Rose back.
She can almost feel her dad's glare on her back, but she ignores it. For once, it's her turn to be uncontrollable. It's her time to be careless and convince herself that she couldn't care less.
She meets Scorpius over at his house one day for more planning. The door is cracked open, and the table is set this time with chocolate fairy cakes with strawberry icing, just the way she likes them. He seems to know it, too, though she can't imagine how.
"You were obsessing over them at the Ball during seventh year," Scorpius shrugs, blushing. "I suppose I have a good memory."
Draco, who's leaning against the doorframe, glares at them. "Don't do anything you'll regret, son."
"Father, what do you expect me to do?" Scorpius growls, blushing.
"Nothing stupid," Draco says again, furrowing his blonde eyebrows before disappearing. With a flourish, he disappears.
"Sorry about that," Scorpius chuckles nervously. "He's a bit strange at times. Care for a fairy cake? Who am I kidding, of course you do!"
Rose grins, taking the fairy cake from him. "So, are you ready to plan out the orphanage? Wait, how many Galleons do we have for this project?"
"Around 500," Scorpius shrugs as if it's no big deal.
Gasping, Rose's eyes widen. "You're kidding! That's so much money! How could your father even think of giving away that much money? I thought he didn't approve of the project?"
"He doesn't," Scorpius says with a laugh. "We're sort of rich, my dear Rose, in case you couldn't tell."
Her eyes grow even wider. "What are we going to do with all this money? We could build a playground, and a swimming pool! We could make a mansion!"
"I suppose we could," Scorpius replies. "Shall we get started, then?"
But then something changes. She realises that in her excitement, she's moved far-too-close to him. His face is right there in front of him. Suddenly, he leans a bit closer, and he's about to break the space between them-
The door flies open all the way. Draco Malfoy stands there, arms crossed and eyes filled with anger. "Remember, Scorpius, nothing stupid."
Sighing, Scorpius turns back to his pile of plans. "So, Rose, what should we build then?"
Over time, meetings happen between the two of them every week. One day, they bring Rhini and Cale to Diagon Alley for a mini-vacation, since the two of them have actually never been. They walk down the road, Rhini skipping in between them, hand in hand with both Rose and Scorpius, and Cale beside Scorpius, looking grumpy as always.
"Rose!" Someone yells, tearing out of the crowd and wrapping her friend into a big hug. Smiling, she shakes hands with Scorpius too. "Scorpius! Good to see you!"
"And you, Natalie," Scorpius says politely, as Rose squeals. "NATALIE! LONG TIME NO SEE! I so need you to hook back up with Louis, he's been awfully depressed ever since the two of you broke up."
"Seems like you have no problem with that, Rose," Natalie grins, nudging Rose's shoulder. "Is that your daughter? Oh, she bears such a likeness to the two of you!"
Scorpius turns red and begins to deny it immediately. "No, no! She's not our daughter. We're starting an orphanage, y'see, and-"
"I'm Rhini," Rhini declares, sticking out a hand. "I'm an or- phun, and my parents are gone, so Rose and Scorpius are like my parents."
"Yeah," Scorpius replies, visibly relieved. "Yeah, she's like our daughter, except we're not married or anything."
Rose grins. "Definitely not. Anyway, yeah, we're starting an orphanage."
Natalie's eyes fall upon the two adorable little orphan kids. "So, this is what you've been doing for the past few years? Merlin, Rose, that's amazing that you've chosen to do something so… worthwhile!"
Rhini's eyes light up. "Oh, Rosie, Scorpio, look! It's a candy shop!"
The usually devoid of emotion Cale's eyes light up too. "OH, I love candy! Could we please go get some?"
Natalie grins at the two of them. "Well, I suppose I should let you head over to the candy shop. But, before I leave, one request."
Rose exchanges a glance with Scorpius. "Um, sure."
"When you two get married, please call me," Natalie requests, evil grin upon her face. When she sees the embarrassed look on both of their faces, she turns and runs away, waving behind her all the way.
Rhini beams. "You're gonna get married? That would be so cool! Can I be the ring girl? And Cale can be the flower boy!"
"I am not being some stupid flower boy," Cale complains, glaring at the younger girl.
Rose and Scorpius exchange a glance again, grinning this time. Taking Cale's hand this time, she begins to walk off, and Scorpius follows suit. "What do you say we go buy some of Bertie Bott's Every Flavour Beans and some chocolate frogs?"
"Yay!" The two kids cheer. And for once, everything seems near perfect, but not for long.
"You're kidding," Rose says through gritted teeth, glaring at Scorpius.
Because every time things go right, they have to go wrong again sometime. It's a proven law of nature.
"What do you mean, I'm kidding? I told you already that I'm not," he disagrees, seething back at her.
Her eyebrows furrow, and her Weasley temper begins to rise inside of her. "I THOUGHT YOU SAID THAT YOU KNEW WHAT YOU WERE DOING! HOW COULD YOU TELL THE COMPANY THAT YOU WANTED TO DO IT TOMORROW AND THEN GO MAKE A DATE WITH SOME RANDOM CHICK?"
"She's not some random chick," Scorpius defends, crossing his arms. "She's Merilyn Goyle, and I spent my entire school career thinking about her. I mean, I know we're not in high school anymore, but she's still pretty and…"
"She's a failure," Rose butts in, uncaring about his feelings anymore. "She doesn't do anything except pretend to model, and she doesn't care about children at all, Scorpius."
He raises an eyebrow. "How would you know? You haven't seen her since we were eighteen. She might've changed. Wait, are you… are you jealous, Rose?"
"No," Rose scoffs. "I just care more about this project than about my stupid love life. But since you so obviously don't care, I'll have to take on the project on my own."
"Not like I'd want to work with your bossy, short-tempered, bushy-haired self anyway," Scorpius growls, staring at her, uncaring about her so fragile self-esteem.
In shock, her mouth falls open. "Fine, you selfish son of Malfoy!"
She hopes to Merlin that he doesn't see the tears falling down her face as she turns and flees. Because Rose Weasley doesn't cry. She's grown-up, mature, starting her own business.
So why does she still feel like that fragile eighteen-year-old inside?
One day, she's sitting in the midst of the now built but still empty orphanage. The money for the orphanage is still tucked safely away in her bank account, but it still seems so lonely without her partner in crime. A tear falls down her face.
"Why are you crying, Rosie?" comes an innocent voice. "Where's Scorpio?"
Turning around, Rose sees Rhini, coming toward her with an adorable smile. "Rhini! How'd you get here?"
"We brought her here," announces the bold voice of Lily Luna. From behind her emerges Molly, Albus, Lorcan, Lysander, Albus' girlfriend Aquarius, Dominique, and Lucy.
"You've got to quit this sulking, Rose," Molly announces, walking over and ruffling her cousin's curls. "You've got an orphanage to finish, eh? Scorpius or no Scorpius."
Aquarius raises her eyebrows. "He's a bit mad, actually. Merilyn Goyle is the biggest witch I've ever come across, Hogwarts or no Hogwarts. I assure you that they'll break up within a week, so don't worry your little head about him."
"It's obvious that you're in love with him," Lysander adds. "I mean, that's perfectly okay, or it would be if he wasn't a foul git that broke your heart.
"He'll come back," Rhini assures her, looking up at her with those big grey eyes that are just like Scorpius'. "I know he won't stay away, Rosie."
Nodding, she wipes the tear off her freckled cheek and picks up the can of paint beside her. "Anyone up for some painting?"
"This room should be pink!" Rhini exclaims.
Cale, who's finally emerged, shakes his head. "No, pink's a girly colour. Green's so much better."
"Agreed, kid!" Molly shrieks, red curls bouncing about her head like springs. "Green is like my favourite colour ever. And if we painted this room green, like bright green, it would shine and be the best room ever."
The boy who never smiles finally smiles again. "Definitely."
Glancing around the room, Rose feels happier than she has since Scorpius broke up with her. Not that they were ever going out, anyway.
But they'd held hands. He had kissed her cheek. They'd almost kissed, for Merlin's sake. How is that not going out? She'd deluded herself into thinking that they had something. Obviously not, cause he has something with that Merilyn Goyle girl, so she's just left in the shadows.
Dipping her paintbrush into the bucket of paint, she slings paint on the wall in anger, creating a pattern of multicoloured paint dots against the white paint. Dominique's head snaps up. "That looks good, actually."
"Agreed," Lucy peers curiously at it. "We might be onto something here. Rose's ways of taking out her anger on the heartbreaker could become a work of art."
"Well, we've got a lot of decorating to do then," Rose says, finally smiling. "Because I've got a lot of anger toward that guy to get out."
Grinning, Rhini holds up her paintbrush. "We can make this place look really pretty!"
Rose lifts her paintbrush to meet the others. "To all of us that stuck with the project, and not to Scorpius."
One day, they run out of paint when they're halfway through painting a room. Naturally, Rose volunteers to go get some, and Rhini pleads to go with her.
"Fine," The others agree, so with some money in her pocket, paint stains on her clothes, and her hair pulled in a messy ponytail with curls spilling in her face, she leaves.
What she doesn't expect is of course, what happens, because that's the way it always seems to go with her.
He's there. And not only is Scorpius Malfoy there, he's there with the second person in the world she doesn't want to see at that particular moment, Merilyn Goyle. His arm is around her shoulders and she really wishes to walk over and slap him in the face. For some reason, whether it's her self-control or the child at her side, she refrains.
However, Rhini doesn't seem to recognize the tension, because she runs over to Scorpius. "Scorpio! It's so good to see you! I missed you! It's so weird having Rosie and no Scorpio!"
Glancing down at her, Scorpius' eyes widen. Then he glances up.
So that his eyes meet hers.
There's some sort of chill that runs down her spine, and she doesn't know why, because she shouldn't be feeling this way anymore. But she does.
Scorpius clears his throat. "Hello, Rose. How are you doing?"
"Fine, and you?" She responds politely, like a statue. She hates it- it's not supposed to be this way, is it? It used to be different, before the girl that's standing in front of her came along.
Merilyn Goyle smirks at her. "Hello, Rosalie Weasley."
"It's Rose," Rose corrects her icily.
"How's your little orphanage project coming along?" Merilyn hisses, eyes flashing because she knows she's hit a nerve.
"It's going just fine, thank you," Rose responds, since she doesn't want to fight fire with fire. "We're painting now, so Rhini here and I came to get some paint. I think we'll be nearly done soon."
Merilyn smiles, causing her icy eyes to look even more evil. "Well, isn't that just terrific."
Rose nods. "The children are all so excited, including Rhini."
"Yeah, I am, Scorpio!" Rhini bounces up and down, causing her red ponytail to flip around her head. "Are you going to come to the opening? Are you, are you?"
Scorpius looks guardedly at Rose. "Um. I don't know, Rhini, I hope so, but I can never be sure."
"I thought you said you weren't," Merilyn whines, bouncing on her heels.
"You aren't?" Rhini's eyes fill with tears.
Rose glances down at her imaginary watch. "Come on, Rhini, we've got to go." As she passes Scorpius,, she whispers in his ear, "Rhini misses you a lot, and Cale is beyond mad. So…I'll see you later."
As she leaves, she doesn't miss the guilty expression evident on his face.
The last day before the orphanage is set to open, Rhini, Cale, Rose, Molly, Lysander, Lorcan, Lucy, Dominique, and Lily are all finishing up last minute painting and furniture arranging. While there's still a paintbrush in Rose's hand, someone knocks on the door.
"Can someone get that?" Rose calls, still painting furiously. "My hands are a bit full."
"Sure," Lysander replies, and she hears his footsteps walk to the doorway. Trying to ignore the pounding feeling in her heart as she speculates who it might be, she keeps painting her feelings and anger out. There's muttering in the background before Lysander's voice travels back to her again.
"Rose," He yells. "I think you might want to see this."
When she arrives at the door, he's standing there. This time, there's no one with him, no Merilyn Goyle or anything like that. There's only him, vulnerable Scorpius Malfoy.
"Hello," He greets her cautiously. "I came."
"I doubted you would," She scoffs, not meeting his eyes cause she knows she'll give in.
"I came," Scorpius continues, ignoring her, "not for you, but for the children. Not that I don't care about you- I do, you should know- but I knew you wouldn't want me here. However, if the children do, well, that's enough for me. And I wouldn't want to show up the day of the opening without having helped a bit. So I came today."
"All right then," She says decisively, determined not to meet his eyes. "Come in." She steps out of the way, allowing him entrance into the orphanage.
Still awkwardly, he asks, "Have you named it yet? The orphanage?"
"It's the Scorrose, as in Scorpius & Rose, orphanage," Rose sighs sadly. "I sort of named it before the thing- well, it fell apart."
"Before things fell apart," He repeats, nodding. "Things fell apart too, with me and Merilyn."
"I might have guessed," Rose nods along with him. "Since you came back. I don't imagine she would have appreciated that."
Smirking like the Scorpius she knows (knew?), he informs her, "We broke up because I wanted to come back to the orphanage. She wasn't the nice girl I thought she was, you know. She was actually a bit evil and controlling. So yeah, everything just fell apart."
"Yeah, I knew she was kind of evil," Rose laughs. Under her breath, she adds, "Boys are so oblivious."
Once they enter the painting room, Rhini immediately throws herself at Scorpius. "SCORPIO! You came back!"
"Yeah," he breathes softly so that Rose can barely hear it, sounding as if he hardly believes it himself. "Yeah, I came back."
"Rose!" He calls after a fun day of painting, getting beat up by Rose's many family members for 'breaking her heart', and getting pounded on mercilessly. Running a bit faster, he catches up with her. "ROSE!"
"Yes?" She says coolly, turning her head to look at him.
"I need to talk to you," He says, breathing in and out heavily.
"Obviously," She says, smirking as he usually does.
He sighs. "It's about the orphanage." Slowly, he bends down on one knee, as if he's going to propose to her. Confused, she raises an eyebrow, but he begins to talk anyway. "Rose Weasley. I know I've been a jerk to you over the past few weeks, and I'm so incredibly sorry for that. I was stupid- I am stupid- and I shouldn't have done any of that. I regret it immensely. But would you please, please, please consider taking me back as a partner for the orphanage?"
"Is this what this is about?" She asks coldly, glaring at him. "You just want back in the orphanage? You don't care about me?"
"Of course not," He says, eyes blazing with intensity. "I care about you, I always have. But… this was… IS very important to me, and if I couldn't have it… I don't think I would survive."
"Should've thought about it before," She hisses.
He stops her, catching her by her shoulders and staring deeply into her eyes (he knows all the tricks, doesn't he?). "Please, Rose?"
"Maybe," She allots, partially because she loves to see him happy and partially because she sort of wants him back.
"Maybe," he repeats, a grin breaking across his face. "That's good enough for me."
The next day is the opening of the orphanage. Everyone is there, Lily, Lysander, Lorcan, Molly, Lucy, Teddy, Victoire, Dominique, Louis, Albus, James, Hugo, Roxanne, heck, even Fred. The orphans are there too- Rhini, Cale, and the others that they've decided to take in by looking over their papers- Anna, Sophie, Carla, William, Robbie, Jelly, Issie, Jazz, Benji, Becky, and Maddy. Each of them is adorable.
And of course, he's there too, blazing eyes in the audience.
"Welcome to the opening of the Scorrose Orphanage," She begins, beaming from ear to ear, because this is what she's been waiting for since forever. "I am Rose Weasley, coordinator of this orphanage, and I am pleased to say that we have the most amazing group of children I've ever seen. Hopefully, this will be a success. Before we begin the celebrations, there's someone I'd like to thank. Scorpius Malfoy, come up here, please?"
Head hung, Scorpius walks up to the platform and stands beside her. He quickly throws her a 'what is going on' look, to which she shrugs.
"Scorpius," She continues. "I know we've had our rough spots and all, definitely, but hey, nobody's perfect. And we're still partners. So partners to the end, right?"
"To the end," He repeats, a huge smile on his face. "Because, you know this will be the most amazing orphanage that anyone has ever seen."
"You got it," She agrees. Then slowly, his hand envelopes hers again, and they're partners till the end.
The cheering starts then from all over the room. Rhini runs up to the front, Cale close behind her, and the photographer Roxanne snaps a picture of them.
For once, it's almost as if they're a family of sorts.
Epilogue- 3 months later
"Maddy! Stop hitting Robbie," Rose scolds, grabbing the other red-headed little girl. Tiredly, she lifts her eyes to meet Scorpius'. "Who knew that running an orphanage could be so much work?"
Scorpius looks up over the top of the book he's reading to Cale to grin at her. "It's a lot of fun, though."
"I wouldn't have had it any other way," She agrees, grinning back at him. Her life is something near perfect at this point.
Laughing, they round up all of the kids for bed, and hug them each once before they go to bed. And in the hallway that separates both of their bedrooms, he kisses her goodnight.
(Yeah, they're sort of going out)
"Good night," He whispers, and they both turn to go back into their rooms.
That night, as she always does, she dreams of Scorpius and the orphans. She dreams of the life that they lead, such a happy one.
Because this is sort of her happily ever after, and sort of her dream life. Even though she fights with Scorpius a lot of the time, and the orphans can sometimes be a handful, she wouldn't trade it for anything.
Even though it took quite a lot of work before the Scorrose Orphanage was ready to open, it's all worth it in the end.
She smiles, because this is her life, and though it's uncontrollable, she could care less.
Maybe things have finally changed for the better this time.
A/N: DONE FINALLY!
Yes, Scorrose is checked off.
This is for many people.
First, for Sid, because she took the time to read my DomScorpius and gave me great ideas & encouragement.
Second for my triplets, Ella & Zhie, cause they're just awesome and you have to know it.
Third for Amy Lollipopper.:P
Fourth for Rose and Listen, because they're insane but they're awesome nonetheless.
Fifth for all the other amy-zing people I've missed.
PLEASE READ & REVIEW, YEAH?
Names courtesy of Sid and Ella, by the way.