for the love of friendship

Ever since the beginning, they've been there.

He's there when she's nervous about houses in first year. Her eyes wide, she asks him innocently, "What house d'you reckon I'll be sorted into?"

He looks nervous, scared, even. But he offers her a bit of a smile and tells her, "I don't know, Cassie. I just don't know." He stops himself, scared that he'll start rambling once again.

"We could be Gryffindors together," Cassie's young face lights up. "That would be fun, wouldn't it, Lorcan?"

"But Cassie," his eyes widen in shock, "I'm not brave enough to be a Gryffindor."

"Silly," Cassie's eyes sparkle, "You can be whatever you want!"

And he watches in admiration because she's headstrong and she's Cassie, but he's just timid little Lorcan Scamander, the more reasonable out of the two twins, the one with the secret passion for music that no one knows about.

But maybe there's more to him than that.

She's there in second year when he's sitting in the grass, carefully plucking notes on his guitar.

Rather than asking what he's thinking, playing guitar in public where anyone could hear him, she settles down beside him, just listening to the music. He stops playing, cocks his head to the side. "You… what are you doing here?" He immediately blushes at how blunt he's being.

The fire returns to her eyes, but she grins. "I have every right to be here. And I heard music, so I came to check it out. What of it?"

"Nothing," he mumbles, averting his gaze to the ground. "I was just… nothing."

"Playing guitar, obviously," she says with a laugh. "Let me play it."

His arms encase his guitar protectively, and it's obvious in that moment that he really adores his guitar. "No! You can't have Bernie. Lysander already went dented her when he was trying to kill some imaginary creature of hers."

Cassie's arms fold across her chest stubbornly. "Well, I'm not Lysander and- wait, you named your guitar?"

"No," he protests, flushing red. "Of course not, Cassie… only weird people name their guitar."

"Well, you must be weird then," she flicks him in the chest, giggling subtly.

"Oh, I've been told," he reassures her quickly, grinning before he holds the guitar tighter and laughs at her expression. "Fine. I suppose I can allow you to touch Bernie. As long as you clean off your fingerprints."

Smacking his shoulder, Cassie presses her fingertips to Lorcan's guitar before she jerks away, still laughing. "So, do you plan to be a musician, then?"

"More than anything else," he whispers, and she believes him.

They become closer to each other throughout third year, and then in fourth year, they become the goofy friends that everyone loves. It's not romantic, because they're Cassie and Lorcan so no one considers them that way. Though it seems like flirting, it's more like pretending, because they're both just pretenders in the end.

"Lorcan!" Cassie calls dramatically as she steps out onto the grounds. "Lorcan, my prince! I've desperately missed you."

"Oh, princess, I've missed you too," he says, colour flooding his cheeks. "Have you been avoiding me, once again?"

"Of course I have," she giggles. "No, prince, but I've found another! I'm terribly sorry; you'll have to live without my presence in your life for a while."

His hands clutch at his throat. "But I cannot! You are the sunshine in my life!"

"And you the sunshine in mine," she declares solemnly, biting her lip to restrain the giggles. "There are no words for how much I adore you, Lorcan."

His eyes widen, large blue orbs in his fair face, and then he shakes his head at her. "This is silly, Cassie," is all he says before he walks away.

She wonders when he became so mature, and if she's ever going to grow up.

(She doubts it.)

People start to imply that they could be flirting and neither of them know how to react.

They protest the opposite, that their tickling and teasing is purely platonic, but she sometimes thinks about how he makes her feel (like butterflies are running rampant in her stomach) and he sometimes thinks about how adorable she looks when she blushes (like a fallen angel). So sometimes, they wonder what they could be.

But they never tell each other, of course, because Lorcan and Cassie are purely platonic and they could never be anything else.

Fifth year, and Lorcan gets his first girlfriend. Her name is Danni Oberlin and she's naïve and innocent, just like Lorcan. But somehow deep inside, Cassie knows that Danni is all wrong for Lorcan- particularly because she believes that Lucy is perfect for Lorcan… or maybe it's because she's jealous of the way that Lorcan's suddenly always with Danni.

She's supportive, of course. She spends time with Lorcan and Danni both, despite the fact that half of the school is ignoring her. Because, despite the fact that Lorcan's royally screwed up his relationship with Lucy, he's done nothing to wrong her and they're still friends, right?

But she avoids him a bit, just because she doesn't think that Danni's right for him and she doesn't want that kind of thinking to rub off on him. She does not want to ruin his first happy relationship- or does she?

{Besides, she reluctantly admits, they're kind of cute together. But only kind of.}

Fifth year, and Cassie gets her first real boyfriend. His name is James Potter and he's the fire that matches with Cassie's fire perfectly. Lorcan can't help but think that when you add fire to fire, you just get burned. But he doesn't say anything because if Lorcan Scamander is one thing, it's reliable, and James Potter is his pal (of sorts). So he just vows to be there for them, despite the fact that Cassie is hardly around anymore, and when she is, everything is about James.

He's supportive, of course. He tells her that they're adorable together and that she shouldn't worry about him cheating on her.

But he kind of avoids her because he misses their goofy times together and it feels weird to flirt when in fact, he has Danni and Cassie has James. He doesn't want to royally screw everything up once again.

{Though, of course, he has to admit that Cassie and James are sort of cute together, in a sick, twisted way.}

Danni and Lorcan break up first.

Really, on the inside, he's just a confused boy, and Lorcan tends to royally mess up everything. So, in order to justify the fact that he's shattered Lucy Weasley's heart, he kisses her. He figures it makes up for everything, right?


Because then Danni's there, looking utterly hurt, and after that, there's no more Lorcan-and-Danni. There's only a hurt and confused Lorcan. He doesn't know what to do, what to say- there's no way to apologise, to make it up to her.

Cassie's the only one who doesn't shun him completely for the latest in his long line of screwups. She doesn't tell him that he's a man-player (though he gets much worse than that, especially from Danni's lovely sister). Instead, she wraps her arms around him in a warm hug and tells him that he could've done worse, because really, he could have. She's his comfort in this dark time, because she doesn't judge or tell him that he's a screw-up, instead, she's just there.

She's there when he has his first real heartbreak and one of his first real love triangles.

It doesn't matter, anyway- just a few weeks later (or so it seems) Danni Oberlin has a new boyfriend who, in his opinion, is much better for her than he'd ever been.

He's there when James breaks up with Cassie.

Really, he should've seen it coming. James is the type of guy that gets jealous quite easily. Which is sometimes endearing, but doesn't fare well with a girl like Cassie, whose schedule is filled with other boys- with Sebastian and Lorcan and Lysander and Lachlan and such.

The way he breaks up with her is what Lorcan considers the worst way to break up with a girl. James simply sends an owl to her with just a few words- We're done. Have fun with whoever you're with now. –James.

All he can do is watch and comfort her, one arm around her shoulders, as she cries. It's her first heartbreak, so he whispers the same words to her that she's probably heard before: "Maybe James Potter just wasn't the one for you."

Though as much as it seemed like they'd be together forever- James-and-Cassie- Lorcan is forced to acknowledge that nothing lasts forever, really. Not even the most unbreakable of couples.

He has the strongest desire to punch James Potter in the face now, though.

But he's always been strangely amicable so he doesn't follow through on his desires.

Lorcan Scamander is the type of boy that just goes from disaster to disaster.

His next disaster is Lucy, and everyone saw that one coming. Lucy has always been his very best friend, the one with the not-so-tame language, the one that's always been Slytherin, through and through. But she's not even nice to Lorcan, her very best friend. It bothers him, sometimes, though Cassie knows he doesn't let it show. Lorcan is never angry with anyone.

But ever since that kiss in the library, there's something like a spark between Lucy and Lorcan. However, despite her evident feelings for Lorcan, Lucy strikes up a relationship with a boy who's had a crush on her since forever because she's lonely and he's lonely.

Which leaves Lorcan with nowhere to go from there.

It's evident that he has feelings for Lucy that are more than just simple friendship, but really, what can he do with them now? Confess and bring on yet another disaster? Confess and ruin his best friend's first relationship?

So he sits on the sidelines glumly, like a spectator at a rained-out ballgame. The forced smile on his face doesn't reach his eyes.

Cassie's the first to join him on the bleachers.

They only do what's natural, really. One night, she has a nightmare, so she feels her way to the Hufflepuff boys' dormitory somehow and ends up sleeping beside him in his bed. He doesn't know what to think, what to do- but he just wraps an arm around her, nestling her closer to him, and goes back to sleep.

In the morning, when she awakens, all she can think about is how developed he's suddenly gotten in the past few months.

Other times, he sits by the lake and plays his guitar. When she comes, he doesn't bother stopping- instead, he just slides over and makes a place for her. The smile that stretches over her cheeks indicates that she enjoys his music.

One day, he goes so far as to let her play Bernie. It's quite the big sacrifice for him. Her fingers slip and the music that spills from the guitar is tainted. But he tells her that it's beautiful nonetheless.

The first time he kisses her is by the same lake. Her fingers are twined with his. He's just gotten a letter from Lucy, detailing how she doesn't really like the guy but she's scared of relationships- which is really the same as him. Lucy and Lorcan do not believe in love. Cassie doesn't believe in love, either.

But they do believe in themselves, each and every one of them.

Lorcan looks over at Cassie. For one of the first times, he really sees her- the way her brown hair has golden streaks when it catches the light, the way her blue eyes sparkle whenever she's happy- and, taking a hint from Lysander for once, he leans over and kisses her.

It's not exactly the most normal thing, nor is it perfect. But they were never perfect, anyway.

After a moment's hesitation, she kisses him back.

He doesn't immediately ask her to be his girlfriend, and she doesn't expect him to. They just know what they are- they're Lorcan and Cassie, not Lorcan-and-Danni or Lorcan-and-Lucy or Cassie-and-James, yet somehow they just work together.

Because ever since the beginning, they've been there for each other, and that's got to count for something.

In the end, they don't end up with each other.

Lorcan ends up with Lucy, and Cassie with James. They're now cousins-in-law or something of the like. Yet they're still there for each other, because Cassie's the Maid of Honour in their wedding.

And in the end, they still have the memories.

From the beginning to the end, they'll always be there.

A/N: No idea.

This is for the lovely Verity and Janey, who don't agree that Lorcan and Cassie make a cute couple. Thanks to the lovely Verity for Lorcan's characterization, Janey for Cassie (she's not mine, so), Amy for Danni, and a bunch of other formerly HaF (now Casuistry) people for the various other mentioned characters.

And yeahhh. These are originally RPG characters, so I know I screwed up their characterizations, but it's whatever.

Hope you thought it was cute, at least! 3

Please read & review!