Complex Conjugates

-or, the time Dominique was accidentally Head Girl and maybe enjoyed it. Just a little bit.
Scorpius/Dominique

The letter comes on a Thursday.

She assumes that it is the usual, an extensive list of the school supplies that she needs to purchase for the year. However, as she unrolls it, it becomes obvious that it is anything but the usual.

She nearly drops it in surprise. Blinking rapidly, her blue eyes focus on the two most important words—Head Girl. All she can think is that this cannot be happening, not to her.

"You've gotten your school supply list already?"her younger brother Louis storms, scowling from ear to ear. "No fair; I want mine! The stupid school is biased against fifth year guys!"

"Shut up, Louis," is all she manages to get out as she scans the letter again. What the heck is going on here? "It's not a school supply list." Somehow, she kind of wishes it was, because this has made things a heck of a lot more difficult.

"What is it, then?" Her smirking brother walks over to her side and peers over his shoulder. After he scans it over quickly, a low, rumbling laugh erupts from his belly. "Head Girl? Please tell me that they've got the wrong person and this letter wasn't meant to go to you."

"Go away, Louis," she swats at her brother, and then thinks that that must be it. This must be a misunderstanding. They must have sent it to the wrong Weasley again.

Opening the letter again, she stares at the words until they blur together. Finally, she forces herself to look up at the name at the top. It stays there, though she thinks it might disappear. Blinking, she drops the letter to the floor.

It says, in big, bold letters, Dominique Weasley.

"Did you finally get a letter from your boyfriend?" her older sister Victoire (who is visiting for the weekend while her husband watches her child) asks, scooping the letter up off the floor. "Oh, wait, I forgot, you don't have one." Unfolding the letter, she scans the first line, and then raises her blonde eyebrows. "So, what kind of Slytherin scheme did you pull this time to get this letter? Because we all know you couldn't have gotten this on your own?"

"No scheme," Dominique rolls her eyes. "I don't want to be Head Girl."

"Come on, kid; it's not too bad," Victoire gives her sister a menacing smile, as if to somehow forcefully remind her that Victoire was Head Girl in her time at Hogwarts as well. "It's just a lot of work."

"Exactly, and I don't do work," Dominique groans, leaning back in her chair.

It's then that her mother skips into the room, looking as gorgeous as ever. As soon as she sees the letter that Victoire's still clutching. "Mon cherie! Dominique! Have you gotten your Hogwarts letter already? I thought I told zem to stop sending ze letters so early!"

"It's something else, Maman," Dominique replies hesitantly, burying her head in her hands. "I'm pretty sure it's a mistake—"

"Head Girl?" her mother shrieks in a voice so loud Dominique's sure that the people on the other side of the ocean can hear. "Dominique, I never would have expected zis from you! Magnifique!"

She tries to protest, to remind her mother that she's a Slytherin and therefore should never have been appointed Head Girl, but her protests die in her throat as her mom begins to braid her hair. Leaning back in her chair, she decides that she can handle the star treatment, if only for a few days. Even if she's not actually the Head Girl and they accidentally got Rose and Dominique mixed up again or something.

/

Over the course of the next few days, her parents tell everyone possible about Dominique's victory. Though they might not look it, Dominique thinks that her parents must be two of the most competitive people around, and this is one of their biggest victories yet (other than having the first grandbaby, of course). For years, people have been saying that Rose is a clear choice for the year's Head Girl, and now Dominique's snagged that title from right under Rose's nose.

It's not as if Dominique is a bad choice. No, Dominique has fairly good grades, and she always manages to avoid getting in trouble. It's just that she's not the year's Golden Girl. She always assumed that all of the teachers and staff hated her. She sees now that she must have either been completely wrong—though she still does stand by her theory that they somehow mixed up her name with Rose's.

Everyone converges as usual at Platform 9 ¾, though the atmosphere is now charged with an unfamiliar animosity. Dominique feels like screaming, "Chill out, guys; they've only just mixed up the names! Rose will have her rightful position in no time and I'll be back to being the Slytherin Weasley!" But, to preserve her parents' pride, she simply stands silently and awaits the trains.

"The Heads have a compartment near the front," Rose sneers, giving Dominique the darkest glare Dominique's ever seen.

"Oh, stuff it, Weasley," she retorts angrily, feeling a surge of rightful anger. Why should she not be allowed to have her moment of glory? Does Rose have to always be treated as her superior? She crosses her arms across her chest. "Your jealousy is showing."

She suddenly wishes that she had rightfully earned her position, that she wasn't just (once again) a second-best to her idiotic cousin. Turning, she storms onto the train and heads right for the Head Compartment. She needs to get this mess sorted out as soon as possible.

However, once she gets there, she isn't greeted with puzzled glares or people asking, "Where's Rose?" Instead, the professor just smiles. "Dominique. Nice of you to show up on time, though the same can't be said for the lovely head boy."

"There's been a mistake," Dominique informs him, crossing her arms across her chest. "I'm not the girl that you're looking for. I'm not the Head Girl. I'm Dominique Weasley, Slytherin, daughter of Bill and Fleur Weasley."

"Ah, on the contrary," Professor Zabini's eyes sparkle as he grins at her. "You see, I was a Slytherin in my time as well, and just like everyone else, I got tired of the Gryffindors dominating the school. I've watched you grow up, Weasley, watched you work tirelessly for what you want. You haven't exactly been handed life on a silver platter like many of your relatives. So I might have put in a good word for you."

She stares at him. "Why the-? I don't want to be Head Girl!" She feels panic surging through her veins. This isn't what she'd wanted, not at all. Then another thought strikes her. "Who's the Head Boy, then?"

"Oh, he's a housemate of yours," Professor Zabini replies breezily, and Dominique feels a surge of relief. At least she won't be stuck working with some cocky, idiotic Gryffindor

Then the 'Head Boy' walks in and all of her relief fades away as she recognizes his face. Scowling, she jumps out of her seat. "You're the Head Boy?"

"Yes," Scorpius Malfoy replies curtly, raising an eyebrow at her. "Where's Rose? Isn't she the Head Girl?"

"You idiot, I'm the Head Girl," Dominique hisses, crossing her arms. Of course, she really should have expected this, as Scorpius has always been first in their year. Somehow, though, it hadn't even crossed her mind that she'd be expected to work with this imbecile. "Sorry to disappoint you."

"Oh, believe me, I'm plenty disappointed," Scorpius retorts, his eyes darkening. Both of them stand up indignantly at the same time.

Pointing at each other at the same time, they say in unison, "Professor, I cannot be expected to work with this idiot!"

/

"I cannot believe that he assumed that since we're in the same house, we'd be all best friends and crap," Dominique hisses, glancing over at her new 'partner'. "I swear that you're the worst person possible for me to be paired with."

"Yeah, well, I'm not so keen on you either," Scorpius hisses back, kicking his feet back and forth. "Where are the rest of those little snotty Prefects? They were supposed to be here by now."

"They're coming soon," she responds automatically, glaring darkly at him before retreating back into her thoughts once again. She remembers for the fifteenth time why she hates him. He's just a cocky, generally unpleasant guy. Everyone expected him to have some unfavorable rivalry with Rose Weasley, her cousin, but instead, it was always Dominique and Scorpius instead. They would rival over everything—grades, though his were always higher than hers, a position on the Quidditch team, friends. She'd almost always be the loser, and that just made her hate him all the more.

Sure, despite the fact that she's a Slytherin, she doesn't hate many people. Scorpius Malfoy is one of the few people that she can honestly say she despises with every inch of her being.

The door opens, shaking her out of her hate-induced reverie, and the fifth-year Prefects pour in. At first sight, she recognizes three of them—her cousins, Lily Potter and Lucy and Hugo Weasley. The rest of them are unfamiliar.

"Scorpius," the Gryffindor prefect smirks, tossing her brother a bright smile. "I didn't expect to see you here."

"You knew I got Head Boy, Gemini," Scorpius retorts, rolling his eyes brazenly. "This is hardly the time for childish sibling rivalries."

For whatever reason, this interests Dominique. Malfoy having a younger sister is something she can hardly imagine, yet the girl sits in front of her with a smirk so similar to Scorpius' that it becomes increasingly obvious that the two of them are related. She can't remember where she was when this girl got sorted—probably off with Mara, wreaking havoc on the school—but she sort of wishes that she was there for this sorting.

Sighing, Scorpius launches into some speech about the Prefect duties, one that Dominique decidedly tunes out. She hates the sound of his voice, really; it's low and smooth and completely distracting, which irritates her all the more. She can't imagine how she's meant to survive this year with the evilest of all evils, otherwise known as the oldest Malfoy child.

At some point, she must have fallen asleep, because suddenly she's being shaken awake by a cold hand. "Weasley. Weasley. We're at the school; wake up!"

"Never touch me," she mumbles, her hand flying out to slap him on the wrist. He jerks back at once.

"Did you want me to just leave you here, then?" he raises an eyebrow at her.

Scowling, she just pushes past him and walks off of the train, pushing a piece of her fiery red hair behind her ear. The lake looms in front of her, and she realises suddenly that she has no idea where she's meant to go. That's when the Malfoy idiot catches up with her again. Breathlessly, he tells her, "We're meant to go across the lake together."

"And you're meant to end in some terrible demise," she spits back.

"Come on, Weasley; we have to work together all year," Scorpius tells her, running a hand through his shiny blonde hair. "Can't we at least be civil?"

She stares at him for a moment, as if she's considering this. Then she snorts and shakes her head. "No."

He scowls at her, but the two of them board the boat anyway. "You know," she comments darkly, "I could just stop here and throw you out of the boat. It would be nice. You could sink to the bottom of the lake and become a sea monster, whilst I take over all of the duties of the school."

"You could," he smirks humourlessly, "but you wouldn't do that. First, despite what you may claim, you're not quite that evil. And second, you need me to help you out, because you're too lazy to run the school by yourself."

She thinks about this, and then nods her head. "You're right. Maybe I should jump to the bottom of the lake instead and escape the horrors of this year."

To her irritation, he simply laughs and continues to row. Her urge to push him out of the boat grows higher by the minute.

When they're almost to the shore, he turns to smirk at her. "Good thing you didn't push me out of the boat, as we're supposed to be setting an example, right?" His eyes sparkle with mirth, and she hates it.

"I'm not setting an example for anyone," Dominique retorts, swishing her hair (which she suddenly realises is far too long for her liking). "I'm not exactly the role model type, sorry."

"Well, you are now, as you're Head Girl," he informs her placidly, as if she could forget. The urge comes over her then, and there's no way that she can resist. So, she gives him a hard glare and shoves him out of the boat.

A wave of satisfaction rolls over her as he bobs beneath the waves, but when he resurfaces, the effects of what she's done crash over her. She raises an eyebrow nonetheless. "Someone's a bit wet."

"I hate you so much," he spits, spitting water every which way.

She just smirks. "Have a nice time trying to get back to shore, Malfoy." Then, with a sudden rush of empowerment, she begins to paddle the boat back to shore.

Of course, the cocky boy tries to chase her down, and naturally, he succeeds. He stops the boat in its tracks as he clings on for dear life. Darkly, she tells him, "Let go of my boat."

"Your boat," he scoffs, rolling his eyes. "Last time I checked, this was the boat that they assigned for the Heads, and I am Head Boy." Then, completely disregarding her cursing and threats, he jumps back into the boat and begins to help her paddle back to shore.

"You've got a bit of water just there, on your cheek," she says spitefully. And then, hate blazing in her blue eyes, she slaps him across the face.

That just irritates him all the more, and he attempts to push her out of the boat, successfully turning the boat over and plunging both of them into the cold water. She feels it seeping into her robes. Her wet, long hair falls into her eyes, and she lets out an enraged scream before trying to find the idiot. Of course, that just results in a bunch of wet lunging and the like.

Then, of course, the teachers decide that it's finally time to get involved. Looking enraged, they separate the Head Girl from the Head Boy.

"What in the name of Merlin is going on here?" One of the teachers demands, scowling from ear to ear. "You're meant to be the Heads of the school! You're supposed to be role models for the other students!"

"If I was with anyone else, I might attempt to be a role model," Dominique scoffs. "But he is the worst possible choice for my co-Head."

"I cannot work with her," Scorpius agrees, crossing his arms. "She is the most intolerable person on this planet."

"You two are the ones that we have chosen to be the Heads," the teacher scowls, crossing her arms, "and therefore, we will not revoke your positions at this time. But we do expect you to get along, or at the very least try to be civil to one another. So let's give this another try, shall we?" She claps her hands. "You two are going to be given a, well… let's just say we'll be sending you off for a bit."

"But what about school?" Scorpius protests, though Dominique isn't really bothered. Anything that involves doing less work is fine with her.

"You'll still be doing school, little Malfoy, no need to worry about that." The teacher begins to walk off, obviously expecting them to follow, so Dominique just rolls her eyes and begins to walk off, hoping that by some stroke of luck Scorpius will just stay behind.

It doesn't work.

He hesitates before tromping off, his shoes stamping against the wood floor. She rolls her eyes and follows the teacher out of the castle and into the woods.

"Whoa, hold on; I don't do woods," Scorpius replies nervously.

"Ooh, is ickle baby Malfoy scared?" Dominique teases, raising an eyebrow. "Come on, chicken, man up. We've still got a while to go."

He glares at her, but continues to trudge nervously through the forest until they reach a small cabin. They both stare at it for a moment before both begin to protest at the same time.

"I cannot stay there with him," Dominique says, turning her nose up at both the cabin and Scorpius. "I would much rather perish."

"I would much rather kill myself and her," he repeats disgustedly, glancing over at Dominique. "You cannot be serious."

"The thing is, Mr. Malfoy and Ms. Weasley, we are completely serious," the teacher replies in a deadpan voice, crossing her arms across her chest. "You may be thinking that this is a bit—well, harsh, but the Head Boy and Head Girl stay in the same quarters anyway, and besides, we've got some special supervision should you decide to try anything. Not to mention the patrols around." She gives them a harsh glare before they all step into the cabin.

Someone's head pops up in the portrait. The hyper, crazy-looking man stares at him. "Hey there, kiddos, I'm your supervisor. You can call me Professor Harbengarben." The man laughs, sounding a bit like a patient who has escaped the mental asylum. "Try anything and I'll report you directly to the authorities."

"Like I'd try anything with him," Dominique scoffs, crossing her arms across her chest. "I despise him."

The teacher seems to take that as a good sign. Laughing a bit, she says, "You will be here at all times for the next two weeks, except for school-regulated activities and school. I suspect that you will make the best of it. I'll be casting a charm on the door as well." She waved her wand with an evil smirk. "Ta-ta!"

Dominique stares at him for a moment before crossing her arms. The door shuts with a slam behind the teacher, which means that they are alone.

"I hate you," she voices at once, settling down onto her bed. She buries her head in one of the pillows. "Don't bother me."

He smirks, walking over to sit right beside her. "What are you doing?"

"Dying slowly," she moans into the pillow, not bothering to look up at him.

"Intoxicated by my very presence, are we?" he smirks at her, running a hand through his hair.

She shoots up at once, entirely prepared to say something entirely unkind, before shutting her mouth and simply scowling at him. Then he does something entirely unexpected.

He looks over at her with his distracting grey eyes that she hates more than any other and tells her softly, "Look, we're stuck here for a while. Can't we at least be civil?"

She scoffs, falling back. "Civil to you?"

"Weasley!"

Huffing impatiently, she finally just shakes her head. "It's not as if I have other choices, is it?"

"No," he tells her slowly, shaking his head. He extends a pale, thin hand. "Truce?"

Hesitantly, she takes it. Immediately, she feels the urge to pull back. His hand is cold, unfamiliar, and everything that she has always loathed about him, but she manages to stand it. "Truce," she stutters out quickly before pulling the covers over her head. She manages to keep him out until she falls asleep.

In the morning, it takes her a moment to realize where she is. Once it sinks in, she throws a pillow at the boy beside her. "Malfoy." The boy in the bed beside her doesn't so much as stir, which irritates her all the more. She walks over to him then, which makes her feel kind of uncomfortable. Telling herself to man up, she hits him in the arm.

He shoots up at last and shoots her a dirty glare. "What is your problem?"

"I was doing you a favour," she shot back. "Breakfast starts soon. Get ready."

He raises an eyebrow at her, as if to ask what's gotten into her, but she simply scowls and steps into the bathroom to ready herself for day one. She has a feeling that once she gets to the Great Hall, things are going to spiral out of control.

And spiral out of control, they do. One of her few tolerable cousins rushes over to her at once. "Where were you?" Molly demands, spitting fire as always. She fingers one of her blue streaks. "Chara tried to make us all play Truth or Dare and paint our nails. Apparently Mara and I weren't scary enough for her." She rolls her eyes, glancing down at her black nails. "We compromised."

"I'm sharing a cabin with the king of superiority," Dominique hisses, scowling as she follows Molly to the Slytherin table. "Sharing a cabin, Molly. For two whole weeks."

"Oh, yeah, I forgot you were a head so you wouldn't be with us anyway," Molly sighs, plopping down. "But hey, Malfoy's not that bad." She wiggles her eyebrows suggestively as a disheveled-looking Scorpius stepped into the Great Hall.

"No," she groans, putting her head on the table. "I swear, Molls, he is the most intolerable person on the planet."

Of course, he takes that moment to walk up behind her and put one of his freakishly cold hands on her shoulder. "The teachers want to see us, fellow Head." He gives her a quick wink to follow up his statement.

Groaning, she gives Molly a hopeless look and gets to her feet. Once they are outside of the hall, she whispers angrily, "Where are we going?"

"The teachers want us; I told you already," Scorpius retorts, rolling his eyes. "It's not my fault that you don't listen to a thing I say."

She resists the urge to mutilate him and instead continues to trudge down the hall. "I swear if they talk about role models one more time, I will flush their heads down the toilet and cackle as they swirl around."

That causes Scorpius to snigger. Raising an eyebrow, Dominique asks, "You find me funny?"

"Well, yes, I suppose," he says thoughtfully, as if this is news to him. "I guess you can be a bit amusing at times, though I've never really thought of it like that…"

"Just shut up and let's get this over with," Dominique hisses, grabbing his arm and causing him to start. This amuses her more than anything else, because anything that makes him uncomfortable amuses her. She pulls herself a bit closer to him, which makes him tense and her grin.

By the time they get to the office, their shoulders are touching. His arm is pressed against hers, which sends an unexplainable chill down her spine that she pointedly ignores. They walk in like that and all of the teachers stare at them as if they are aliens.

"Got a problem?" Dominique growls, deciding to take yet another dangerous step and rest her head on Scorpius' shoulder. She can feel him tense beneath her, making her laugh. Looking back to the teachers, she informs them in a snarky tone, "Malfoy and I are best friends now. Your plan succeeded!"

"Ms. Weasley, this is no time for jokes," one of the teachers glares at her. "You and Mr. Malfoy have to run a meeting for the first years today and discuss school rules."

Sighing, Dominique shakes her head. "So not my style."

"We honestly couldn't care less if it's your style," Professor Bell rolls her eyes. "You are the Head Girl, therefore you are required to perform tasks like these."

"I stand by my theory that my name was mixed up with Rose's," Dominique retorts, "but I suppose that I'll go anyway. It's not like I have anything else to do, unless you count sitting in an empty cabin."

One of the men nods approvingly, and they take that as a signal to leave. As soon as they walk out of the room, Dominique releases Scorpius' arm with an evil grin.

"I hate you so much," Scorpius says gruffly, turning to stare at her.

"You don't like when I touch you?" Dominique retorts innocently, trailing her fingertips down his arm.

He glares at her. "You're such a Slytherin. Manipulative, evil—"

"Determined," she finishes breezily. "Did you ever really think of me as anything less?" She scowls at him. "I know that you're used to Rose and Albus, but they're just the light side of the family. Molly, Lily and I, we're the dark side, the harsh Slytherins no one ever talks about. And sure, Albus is a Slytherin but he's practically a fluffy bunny. I'm one of the black sheep, and I've learned to deal with it." She finally allows herself to breathe, and it's at that point that she realises that he is staring at her as if she has gone insane. She thinks that it's probably because this is the deepest she has ever gone with him. In fact, it's the deepest she has ever gone with anyone outside of her dormitory, and it makes her feel strangely vulnerable.

Spinning on her heel, she turns around. "See you later, Malfoy," she yells over her shoulder as she walks off, not willing to stay there with him any longer.

/

The day passes by in a blur, and she manages to get through the meeting with the first years. There are no casualties. What she does learn, though, is that seventh year is going to be exhausting. By the end of the day, she's passed out on her bed.

She realises after a moment that Scorpius is not there, and she assumes that he is off with some girl. Scowling, she forces herself to her feet and glances in the mirror.

She is gorgeous, right? This is to be expected, considering her parentage. However, there is nothing edgy or terrifying about her long red locks, nothing terrifying like Molly's numerous black and blue streaks.

Walking back over to the bed, she jerks out her trunk and removes a pair of scissors, her Christmas present from Molly last year. She glances at the mirror, questioning if she really wants to do this, then she moves the scissors.

Her long, swirling red hair falls to the floor in clumps, and she stares at her empty, pale face. Gritting her teeth, she decides that she cannot very well stop there, and she continues to cut. Her hair decorates the floor, creating a pattern of red swirled with the white of the floor.

At last, she allows herself to stop and look in the mirror. It's uneven, she curses under her breath. Picking up her wand, she mutters a fairly advanced spell, and the shorter pieces shoot back out. Now, it's all even. Smiling, she decides that she likes it. It's definitely a much edgier look than what she's used to.

The door closes, and of course, she knows who it is before she steps out, her arms crossed. "Finally back from your misadventures with whichever girl it is today?"

He raises an eyebrow at her. "Actually, I was being tutored in Divination."

"But you're Head Boy," she rolls her eyes. "You're not failing any courses."

"True, but it's always good to get ahead," Scorpius retorts, crossing his arms now too. Then he drops them and strides across the room, as if noticing her for the first time. He takes a piece of her shorn red hair in his hand. "You cut your hair."

"Yeah," she says quietly. "I needed an edgier look. I don't see why you would care."

"I liked it long," he informs her, his cold fingers trailing from her shorn hair down to her shoulder, leaving a path of frozen fire.

They stare at each other for a few moments, and she hates it. She hates it because once again, she feels vulnerable, as if she has every part of her out there in the open. She hates it because she feels like he's seeing everything she has tried to keep hidden.

At last, she simply clears her throat. "I didn't know you had any preferences about me. Anyway, I've got to go to… bed."

She doesn't even bother getting out of her school robes. Her suddenly conflicting feelings, newly discovered vulnerability, and the stress of a long day have her asleep in minutes.

/

After that incident, she decides to avoid Scorpius Malfoy as much as possible. It will be a hard feat, that she knows already. After all, they kind of are being forced to stay in the same room. But she knows that if anyone can do it, she can.

She signs up for about every activity possible and keeps herself busy. The times that she's forced to be there with him, she shoves her nose into her books and pretends to be studying. This works for a little bit, at least until he decides to shove his big nose into her business once again.

"You know, you can't fool me, Weasley," he announces, plopping down on her bed. "I know that you're avoiding me." He stares at her then. "I just don't know why."

"Because I hate you," she says, enunciating the word hate as much as possible.

"Communication is key, or were you not listening?" Scorpius continues, ignoring her. "We're both heads. Like it or not, we have to talk at some point, and today's a good a time as ever…"

"No, it's not, because I don't want to talk to you," she declares, rolling her eyes. "You're annoying, and I would like it very much if you would stay away from me—"

"We can't just avoid each other forever," Scorpius tells her softly, his eyes piercing now. "That defeats the purpose of Head Girl and Head Boy."

"I'm not your Head Girl," Dominique informs him, and finally everything on the inside begins to bubble out. "Rose is your Head Girl. I'm Dominique Weasley. I'm not soft and I'm not sweet. I'm not the type of girl to fall for your idiotic act. I don't care about school, I don't care about first years, and for the love of Merlin, I am not a role model. I change and I mold and I pretend to be someone that I'm not. But I do know one thing, and that is that I hate you."

He doesn't leave it there, and she's pretty sure that she hadn't expected him to, anyway. He's exactly the type of guy to not let anything go.

"You don't hate me," he voices at last, staring at her. "I know you don't. You try to pretend that you're all tough and dark and that you don't care about anyone, but you do care. Don't try to lie to me."

"Don't pretend that you know anything about me," she retorts hotly. "I hate you, and I don't care about you at all!"

"All right then," he stares at her for a moment before turning around. "If you're going to stay in denial, have fun there."

"Just kiss already!" the portrait on the wall squeals. Once they both turn to stare at him, he shrinks back. "Oh, I'm supposed to be the supervision… sorry, I forgot."

Dominique just scowls and walks over to the bathroom. "I'm going to take a shower. Don't interrupt me." She shoots him a last scathing glare before opening the door and slamming it behind her. Hopefully a shower will clear her buzzing head.

/

Days go by, and she ties to stay away from him as much as possible, but the portrait's words echo in her head. "Just kiss already." Why would he say that? It's not as if either of them acts as though they have feelings for the other, right? She hates him; she hates him like she has never hated anyone before, yet there's something more that she can't quite place. For once, she's starting to think that maybe she's having feelings other than just plain and simple hate for Scorpius Malfoy.

The problem is that it's Scorpius freaking Malfoy and even if she did like him, or at least find him the slightest bit attractive, he wouldn't like her back. He always has an array of girls flocking around him, admiring him like he is some old statue or the radiant sun on a cold night. In contrast, she is just a black sheep of a Weasley, trying to make her way through life without murdering anyone, though it is a hard task at times.

The weirdest part is that she's meant to hate him. She's meant to loathe him with every fiber of her being. The thing is, though, that she doesn't hate him, not anymore.

Some people might say that it's too rushed, that she can't start to see him in a new light after their years of fighting, that her opinion of him can't change in a matter of days. The thing is, they have not met Dominique Weasley.

She fluctuates with every tick of the clock. None of her opinions are solid; instead, they are as fluid as water, changing from day to day. Therefore, her hatred fades away with every passing day, and pretty soon she's sure that she won't hate him at all anymore.

Then what does that leave?

It leaves tolerance, which she imagines will morph into like, and even the most innocent of friendships can end up as a romance. She can't imagine herself looking at Scorpius in a romantic sort of way, but if this keeps up…

She sighs, finally admitting to herself that he is an attractive guy, and that she is far past the stage of tolerance, which means she's well on her way to liking him. That scares her more than anything else.

Like is the beginning of love, and the thing is that Dominique Weasley does not love anyone, especially not someone like him.

Perhaps she's simply scared of getting hurt.

/

The next day, he keeps smiling at her, which makes her want to slap that smile right off of his cocky face. Though she admits that she might slightly enjoy his presence, he's still one of the most annoying people that she's ever met, and the way that he seems determined to talk to her today irritates her all the more.

"Hey, Weasley," he smiles over at her as he sits down beside her during Potions. "Today, we're switching lab partners."

"And what makes you think that I want to be lab partners with you?" she mutters gruffly, but her blush betrays her. She curses her fair Weasley skin under her breath before looking up at him.

"Because we're on good terms now," he says in a voice happier than any she's ever heard him use. "So why wouldn't you want to?"

"What makes you think that we're on good terms?" she replies sharply, scowling at him.

"Well, I've just sat down beside you, and you're not murdering me yet," he smirks at her. "I'll take that as a pretty good sign, love."

"Don't call me love," she retorts, but she turns around to face the professor. "You can be my lab partner, I suppose. Just don't do anything to purposely irritate me."

Of course, Scorpius takes that with a grain of sand. To be honest, she finds it hard to concentrate on anything the professor is saying with his body in such close proximity to hers. She can't quite understand why—after all, she's never been attracted to Malfoy in any way before—but there's something about his overpowering scent that sucks her in, as if she is one of his rabid fangirls.

When the class is finally dismissed, she storms out at once, her spiky hair falling into her face. Molly catches up with her. "You cut your hair."

"Yeah," she confirms.

"Malfoy is your lab partner."

"Affirmative."

Molly stares at her as if she is crazy. "Who are you, and what have you done with Dominique Weasley?"

"Will you dye some of my hair?" Dominique wonders, smirking over at her cousin.

"Now that's the Dominique that I know," Molly gives her a slight smile before grabbing her cousin's wrist. "Come on, we've got some work to do."

/

"You dyed your hair."

Those are the first words out of Scorpius Malfoy's mouth when she walks into the room. She nods, letting a strand of black hair fall into her face. "You like?"

Scorpius rolls his eyes, then strides across the room to stand by her side. Once he is there, he whispers furiously, "You owe me big time, Weasley. I covered for you to the portrait and to the teachers. I told them that you were tutoring a first year."

She gives a big snort. "They actually bought that?"

"Well, considering that you're the head girl, yes, yes they did," Scorpius retorts, sounding the slightest bit annoyed. "I thought you might have actually been off doing something productive, instead of dying your hair freaky colours. What are the teachers going to say when they see that? They'll know you were off somewhere."

"No, I'll say that I brought it from home and you helped me dye it," she retorts, running her hand over a bright green streak. "You need to chill, Malfoy."

He just raises an eyebrow at her. "Fine, I won't be the one getting suspended—you know what? I'm not going to fight with you." Sitting down on his bed, he gets under the covers. "I'm tired of fighting with you."

Resisting the urge to make some snarky comment, she just sighs and walks over to sit down on her bed. "I suppose I'm tired of fighting with you, too. So what? Now we have some deep conversation?"

"Why not?" he smirks over at her.

"I really hate it when you do that," she sighs. But she talks anyway.

They talk about school and life and friends and what it means to be a Slytherin. She even confesses that she never expected or wanted the title of Head Girl, and that she sort of sees it as a burden instead of a privilege. She notices absently that he seems just as engaged as she is, which makes her sort of happy for some strange, unknown reason.

"I'm tired," he says randomly. "We should probably sleep now…"

Involuntarily, she yawns. "Yeah, probably should."

After a moment, he flips out the light and whispers "Good night," into the darkness.

"Good night," she whispers back.

The darkness, however, seems all-consuming, and it takes over her desire for sleep. She glances around with wide eyes, and the shadows seem to be moving. She tosses and turns, but she feels empty, as if she's completely alone in the world.

She has a sudden urge to go sleep in Scorpius' bed. It's a strange one, but it's late and she's not thinking, so she walks over to his bed. "Malfoy, can I… can I sleep with you in your bed? Just for tonight? I can't sleep," she confesses, feeling silly and vulnerable once again.

"Uh, sure," he replies, rolling over to the other side of the bed and letting her climb in. The bed feels cold and unfamiliar, just like him, but it sends an unfamiliar heat through her body. She rolls over onto her side and suddenly feels sleep overcome her.

"Good night," Scorpius whispers, his breath tickling her neck. He is the last thing that she thinks about before she falls asleep.

/

When she wakes up in the morning, she realizes that his arms are wrapped around her, and that his head is nestled snugly into what is left of her shorn hair. In an effort to avoid the awkwardness, she untangles herself from his grasp and gets up.

She fixes herself up in the bathroom and changes into her robes for the day, then she heads outside to think. Immediately, she starts to walk toward the river, the place where she can think more clearly than any other.

She settles down on a rock and rests her head in her hands, letting the thoughts spin around. She doesn't normally like people or have any sort of feelings for them, but there's something about this Scorpius Malfoy that's different. She'd always thought him to be prejudiced and irritating, much like her cousin Rose. The thing is that he's different , and she's not sure how she's meant to handle that.

She's not sure how she's meant to handle these feelings. She's always viewed love and teenage relationships in a negative light, yet she craves now more than ever to crawl back into his strong arms. In that moment, she realises the most horrifying thing yet. She fancies him.

Dominique Weasley fancies Scorpius Malfoy.

The worst part is that he won't ever fancy her back.

/

"You ditched me."

Dominique glances down the table with wide eyes, hoping that no one has heard. When she realises that (thankfully) no one has, she hisses, "Could you keep it down?"

"Yeah, you wish," he retorts, crossing his arms. "Where did you go? To snog some freak?"

"Actually, no," she says, cool as always. "I went to ready some things before school. I'm sorry, was I meant to ask for your permission? I'll add that to the list of things that will never happen."

"You know what," he says dangerously, getting out of his seat. "I thought you had changed, Weasley. I thought you'd actually grown a heart. Excuse me for thinking that. I see now that you never change."

"The thing is, Malfoy," she begins, her voice rising dangerously, "I always change. Get used to it." She grabs her best cousin's arm and stands up. "Come on, Molly; it's obvious that we're not wanted here." Marching out of the hall, she attempts to preserve whatever shreds of dignity she has left.

"I can't believe him," Dominique hisses, slumping down against the wall. "The idiot! I can't believe that he thought that he could embarrass me like that and get away with it."

One of the professors comes up then. "Ms. Weasley! Is there a problem? Why are you not in the Hall?"

"Yes, there is a problem," Dominique feigns pain then, clutching at her stomach as if it's being punctured with sharp needles. She has always had a flair for the dramatic. "My stomach was hurting really, really badly, so Molly here offered to take me outside. I'm feeling a bit better now, though. Why? Is there something that you want?"

"Yes, Head Girl." The professor's piercing words are just another reminder of Dominique's unwanted position. "The Charms professor, Professor Flitwick Junior, has requested that you and Mr. Malfoy clean his classroom after school today. It is one of your duties as Head Girl to do some volunteer work, after all," she adds upon seeing Dominique's incredulous look. "Be there at four p.m. sharp, Ms. Weasley, or risk losing your position."

As soon as the professor is a reasonable distance off, Dominique bites her lip. "I hate life," she moans.

"You've got this," Molly smirks at her cousin. "Just go in there and be your abnormally sexy self, and heck, he'll be falling at your knees."

Somehow, Dominique finds this plan a bit flawed.

/

The classroom is a mess.

That much is evident upon walking in. She glances around and raises an eyebrow at the cluttered desks, the ruffled papers, the busted glass, and the mess of spare wands. Scowling, she questions the boy over in the corner. "We're meant to clean all of this up without magic?"

"Flitwick insists he can't find things otherwise," Scorpius mumbles, not bothering to meet her eyes. "Come on, now, we've got our work cut out for us."

"I hate this," she mutters as she tosses her waste in the waste bin. "I wish I wasn't Head Girl, so that I wouldn't have to be here with you."

"Yeah, you're not exactly a golden ray of sunshine either," he retorts as he sweeps up some glass. Glancing over his shoulder at her, his eyes suddenly seem to soften, which confuses her all the more. She sincerely hopes he's not going to go all sappy again and ramble on about he doesn't want to fight with her.

"See, you don't even know the proper way to sweep up glass," she says brazenly, feeling a sudden sense of discomfort sweep over her. Mustering up all of her bravery, she marches over to him and takes the broom from him. "This is how to sweep." She demonstrates, feeling his eyes on her the entire time.

"No, you're doing it wrong," Scorpius responds, jerking the broom back and sweeping another pile of dust. "This is how you do it."

"I am a girl, Malfoy," she hisses, jerking the broom back. "I'm pretty sure I know how to sweep a room better than you do, sorry to say."

He glares back at her and jerks the broom toward him. "I'm a pureblood."

She tugs on the broom. "That doesn't mean you're smarter than me."

He pulls back. "It obviously means that I am superior."

Tug. "Only in your dreams."

Tug. "If you must know, I'm amazing in my dreams as well."

Tug. "If you must know, you're an idiot."

It's then that she realises how very close they are. If he tugs one more time, they'll be pressed against one another.

He gives it a final tug with a cocky grin on his face. "I think that you would beg to differ on that point."

For once, she does not get the chance to protest, because he cuts her off by kissing her. Though he's still cold, it's everything she had expected it to be, and it is perfect. She pulls him closer to her. The broom clatters to the floor, forgotten. And for a moment in time, it is just Scorpius and Dominique, the Head Girl and the Head Boy.

After what seems like just a minute of this, she pulls away, breathless. "I hate you," she says, her cheeks rosy and her smile bright for once.

"Hate you too," he retorts. Picking up the broom, he hands it to her. "Start sweeping, Weasley; we've got our work cut out for us."

She laughs. As the two of them get back to work, she finds her hand intertwining with his.

And who knows, maybe it doesn't feel as bad as she had imagined that it would. Maybe even being the Head Girl has its benefits.

(And if being the Head Girl comes with a benefit named Scorpius Malfoy, well, let's just say she might enjoy this position more than she thought.)

/

A/N: OKAY DON'T HATE ME, I LEGITIMATELY HAVE NOT WRITTEN NEXTGEN IN MONTHS. THEN I TRY TO WRITE IT AND THIS IS WHAT COMES OUT.

The basic idea behind this was to write Dominique/Scorpius as a Rose/Scorpius cliché. So I put them as Head Girl and Head Boy, blah blah, you get the idea.

This was written as a late birthday fic for the amazing Kaye (what stars are). I know it doesn't even come close to being as good as what she wrote for me, but happy birthday anyway, Kaye! I love you and I hope you enjoyed it.

Please read and review, everyone, and do not favourite without reviewing. This actually took me an insanely long time to write, so I would actually appreciate it if you left me a review, no matter how short. Thank you very much!