i still wave goodbye, watching you shine bright
he feels like he's drowning /james&rose, against all the odds. for Beth.

disclaimer: i do not own harry potter nor the paramore lyric i used as the title.
: right. do not judge from the suckiness of this piece. i feel like i haven't written anything in FOREVER. but this is for Beth (ella-beth) because her birthday was awhile ago. sorry it's late, darling, but you should know that I LOVE YOU TO PIECES. also: i know about the non-capitalization of this piece and i am sorry if it bothers you, but chances are i am not going to edit this for capital letters anytime soon. so yeah.

i don't know why everybody smokes in this piece. i think it's too much Skins (ah, who am i kidding? you can never have too much Skins).
warnings: cousincest, smoking, HIGH T.


they start fucking the day he moves into his apartment, after she carried in the last box.

it's unintentional, of course, but it happens all the same.

he doesn't regret it.


she leaves every morning. it's predictable, of course, but it hurts all the same.

he tries to ignore the hurt in his chest. but it doesn't work.


"i think i love you," he says against her porcelain skin.

he feels her tense and tries to ignore it, tries to ignore the hesitation, their relation. it works, most of the time.

"don't," she whispers.

but he does.


"we should stop," she says as she smokes her cigarette outside of his apartment. he laughs, and takes a drag.

"darling, we should've stopped a long time ago."


(she can't help but think that he's right)


albus asks him the next week why he hasn't had a date in ages.

"i mean - " he takes a drag " - you used to be the guy, y'know? but we haven't seen you with a girl in months."

james shrugs.

"whatever," albus says, and stomps out the stub of the cigarette with his foot. "just think about going out more, yeah?"

"yeah," he says as his brother's walking away.

he doesn't take his brother's advice, though.


the thing about this is that when he's not around rose, he feels like he's drowning.


the thing about this is that when she's not around james, she feels free.


they're meant for a tragedy, and she knows it, he knows it. really, how could they not? they're cousins and they're fucking and that's not supposed to happen. (but it did it did it did. but like he says, fuck it, yeah?)

it's only that small sliver of hope from him that makes them last longer than they should have.


she says it again.

"we should stop."

we should, we should, we should. the words ring in his ears.

"no, i don't think we should."

silently, she agrees. (he can't help but think she's more than this - more than him.)


her mind says no, her heart says yes.

(she doesn't know which one to chose.)


their world finally comes tumbling down on october 24th. they don't keep track of anniversaries ("just sex. no emotions, right?" "right.") but it's their five-month anniversary since he moved in (since they began).

"i think this should stop."

his smile is crooked, cigarette in hand.

"we've been over this, love."

she shakes her head, and her curls copy her motion. he can't help but think she's some kind of beautiful. she looks up at him.

"no. really."

she walks away. he stands there, and the cigarette falls.


(she's too pretty for her own good, he decides. destroying everything in her way.

but deep down, he knows that's not true.)


he doesn't see anyone for three months. people try, of course, but they always fail. he was the highest of his year. he knows how to keep people out of his flat when he wants to.

but then lily comes over. he doesn't know how she manages to do it, but she walks in as if the charms were never even there.

"fucking hell, lily," james says when he sees her on the side of his bed. he wipes the sleep out of his eyes. "what are you doing here?"

"to get you out of bed," she answers effortlessly as she gets up and yanks the comforter off of him. he groans, resulting in her rolling her eyes. "oh, don't be such a baby, james, seriously."

no matter how much he tries, lily cannot be shaken. she stays over for weeks (he looses count), helping him getting his life back together, piece by piece.

he couldn't have a better sister.


he sees her next when lily finally coaxes him out to the burrow for the weekly family dinner. everyone is there, and people act as if nothing's happened, that he wasn't locked away in his flat for months at a time.

people smile and people laugh and people make small talk. people fight, people kiss, people run. it's all so normal.

it's almost as if it never happened.

(but he can't get it out of his head that it did happen)


"i love you, y'know," he whispers when he finally spots her at the burrow.

"i know."

she walks away, again. he stands still, again. it's just like before.

(except he thinks it hurts just a little bit less.)

(and minus the cigarette.)


in short: she moves on. he doesn't.

(but it's not like anybody knows.)


love, he thinks, is bullshit.

(but not really, because he wouldn't give it a second thought if she wanted him back.)

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