A/N: I wrote this for the Scorpius and Rose fic fest and decided to post it here. My prompt was: Someone keeps sending Rose mystery gifts/love letters. Scorpius is not amused by this. Thanks to enchantedteapot for being my beta and for all the great feedback she gave me.
Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter
Fool in Love
"Don't you think it's time to finally stop beating around the bush and just ask Rose out?"
Scorpius scowled at Al. Albus Potter was his best friend, but he just got these totally strange ideas sometimes—like the idea that Scorpius had a thing for his cousin. "What are you going on about Al? I don't have a thing for your cousin."
"You stare at her every day."
"I do not!" Scorpius protested.
"Really? So you just happen to have an uncontrollable tic in your neck then that causes you to peer over at the Gryffindor table every ten minutes?"
"I don't peer at the Gryffindor table every ten minutes!" Scorpius snapped.
"Alright, every five…"
"What! That's…that's totally absurd Al! Alright, occasionally I might look over at the Gryffindor table, but only to see what Rose is doing, and Rose is my friend so it's perfectly normal that I would be interested."
"In what she's doing. Interested in what she's doing."
"You know Greg Flint is your friend and sits at the other end of our table but I don't see you peering at him every five minutes out of friendly interest." Al said sarcastically.
"Al, I'm not interested in Rose. I mean she's a really nice girl, and a really good friend, but she's Rose. She's just not my type."
"Scorpius, have you ever stopped to think that maybe the reason you go through girlfriends so quickly is because blonde and vapid isn't really your type?"
"There is nothing wrong with the type of girls I like, Al."
"Of course there isn't. But you know a girl like Rose isn't going to stay single forever. And the day you finally get your act together and realize that you want substance instead of looks, well, you might find that it's too late."
That night in the Slytherin dorms, Scorpius lay in his bed thinking over what Al had said.
It was preposterous of course. Certainly, he was fond of Rose. When he had become best friends with Al, she had come along as part of the package, even though she was in Gryffindor. At first he had been rather annoyed with her tagging along—she had been like the annoying little sister that would never leave you alone. But as he had gotten to know her better, Scorpius had been impressed with her intelligence, and her kindness, and her perseverance when chasing after something she wanted. Even her more eccentric personality traits—like her obsession with punctuality—had grown on Scorpius, to the point where he had begun to consider her as a friend, and not just an annoying tag-a-long. As fond as he was of her though, Rose just wasn't the type of girl a Malfoy was attracted to.
Petite, with a boyish figure, and prone to dressing in clothes two sizes too big—Rose just wasn't the type of girl that made a guy's head turn. Her aim in life was to excel in everything that she did, an aim which she pursued with a single-minded determination that could be quite intimidating to some. She spent the majority of her time studying in the library, practicing on the Quidditch pitch, or organizing school events, and as a result, certain other aspects of her life-such as her love life, had been left behind in the dust. Scorpius was fairly certain that Rose didn't even know that boys existed.
When Rose finally did develop an interest in boys, Scorpius knew she wouldn't be the type of girl for just a quick snog in a broom cupboard. No, she would be the type of girl that would want commitment and a lasting relationship. She would be the type of girl you would take home to meet your mother; and being a sixteen year old bloke, finding a girl to take home to meet his mother currently wasn't one of Scorpius' priorities.
"Ah, James has gotten another drunk and disorderly. Apparently he—Scorpius, are you listening to me?"
No, Scorpius wasn't listening to Al, despite the fact that he quite enjoyed hearing tales of the mischief James had managed to get up to since he had graduated last year. At the moment, however, Scorpius was focused on one Rose Weasley—and the brightly wrapped package that had just been delivered to her via owl.
Al, noticing that Scorpius' attention was diverted, turned to look over in the direction Scorpius was staring.
"Oh, it looks like somebody has sent Rose a package—Blimey! I hope I haven't forgotten her Birthday!"
"Her birthday's August the 24th, Al." Scorpius corrected.
"Oh, well it's probably some book that she ordered from Flourish and Blotts then."
"Bookstores don't generally wrap purchases in fancy wrapping paper," Scorpius snapped, as Rose slowly began to pull the paper off of the carefully wrapped package to reveal a fancy looking box.
"It must be something from her parents." Al suggested.
"They would have sent something to Hugo too." Scorpius ground out, trying to get a better glimpse of the box to determine what was in it.
"Hmm, maybe it's a gift from somebody who fancies her then."
Scorpius' head whipped around to face Al. "What?"
"Well, you know Rose is a rather intimidating girl, so if somebody fancied her but wasn't sure if she felt the same they might feel more comfortable sending secret gifts to gauge her reaction rather than approaching her directly."
"Really?" asked Al, raising an eyebrow at Scorpius, before yelling across the Great Hall "Oi, Rose! What did you get?"
Rose turned towards Al and Scorpius, and they both saw the bright red blush on her face.
"It's a box of chocolates! From a secret admirer!" Lily yelled excitedly before Rose could say anything.
"See, I told you so." Al said to Scorpius with a smug look on his face.
And at that moment, Scorpius wanted nothing more than to knock that smug look off of Al's face. Because Al was being an annoying prat. That was the only reason Scorpius wanted to punch him. The only reason. It had nothing to do with a strange twisting feeling in his gut.
"Operation Score-Rose is a go!"
"Score-Rose? Really Al, really? I'm ashamed to be related to you."
"Oh shush Lily. You're just jealous that you couldn't think up an awesome name like 'Score-Rose' for our secret operation."
On Tuesday morning a bouquet of red roses was delivered to Rose Weasley.
"Roses. Her secret admirer must be a classy fellow." Al commented.
"I would have sent her tulips. Rose prefers them, says they're unpretentious, unlike roses." Scorpius said, glaring at the crimson bouquet that was displayed prominently at the Gryffindor table.
Who did this secret admirer think he was? Clearly he didn't know Rose at all if he had sent her roses.
However the fact that her secret admirer apparently knew nothing about her preferences didn't stop Rose from gushing in potions class about the roses he had sent her, and the poem that had accompanied them.
It had taken everything in Scorpius' willpower not to snap at Rose every time she had mentioned her bloody secret admirer.
"Rhyming cat and bat in a love poem? Honestly, Albus? Honestly?"
"Oi! You try writing a love poem in ten minutes and see if you can do any better!"
"You're lucky that Rose is the type of person who really does believe it's the thought that counts, otherwise your terrible poetry might have turned her off her secret admirer for good."
"You know for somebody who is contributing nearly nothing to this operation, Lily, you sure have a lot of criticisms."
"I've contributed plenty!"
"No, I've been the one who has been buying the gifts, I've been the one sending them secretly to Rose, and I was the one who thought up the operation name!"
"Yes, well, I'm going to be the one doing all the work for your scheme tomorrow."
On Wednesday Rose did not come down for breakfast, and no package was delivered to the Great Hall for her during her absence. In fact, Scorpius did not get a chance to see Rose until she walked into their potions class.
"What is Rose wearing?" Scorpius hissed to Al.
"Her robes?" Albus answered, confused.
"Those aren't her robes! They…they…they actually fit properly! And she's wearing a skirt! And it's above her KNEE." Scorpius spluttered, flabbergasted by this turn of events. Rose never wore skirts. Her first year in Hogwarts she had requested to be allowed a uniform with pants—something about equal treatment for women and the like. Plus, Rose said pants were more comfortable.
"Are you alright mate?" Al asked, "I think-"
"You can see her legs! What is she thinking wearing a skirt like that! You can see her legs!"
"Your outrage might be a bit more believable if you could stop staring at said legs for a moment. Besides, I never knew you were so interested in the way Rose dresses." Al said, giving Scorpius a pointed look.
"Morning boys," Rose said cheerily, sitting down next to Scorpius and Al.
"You certainly seem to be in a good mood today. Does this have anything to do with why you weren't at breakfast this morning?" Al asked, smiling at her.
"Oh, Lily wanted to give me a makeover this morning."
"I see, and are those new earring that you have on?" Al asked.
Rose blushed. It seemed like she had been doing a lot of blushing lately. "I found them on my pillow when I woke up this morning."
"WHAT?" Scorpius exclaimed.
"I found them on my pillow when I woke up this morning." Rose repeated, looking at him oddly.
On her pillow! On her pillow! This was the final straw! Sneaking into Rose's dorm to place a gift onto her pillow? Clearly this secret admirer was up to no good, Scorpius concluded. The creep had probably been watching her while she slept! Who knows what else he might try and do the next time he was alone in a room with poor, defenceless Rose. And Rose, having never been romanced before, was obviously falling for his trap! Therefore as Rose's friend it was Scorpius' duty to find out who this creep was and tell him, in no uncertain terms, to leave Rose the hell alone. Yes, it was his friendly duty.
Scorpius spent the rest of potions class glaring at all the perverts who seemed a bit too interested in Rose's legs, and wondering if any of them might be Rose's secret admirer.
"So what is this emergency that is so important we need to miss dinner?" Mike Goyle asked.
Scorpius looked at his three closest friends—Albus Potter, Mike Goyle, and Marcus Zabini—all good, trustworthy blokes whom he had assembled for this most important task. Alright, Zabini wasn't trustworthy, but he had dirt on almost everyone at Hogwarts and would be useful if they needed to bribe or blackmail anyone.
"We need to find out who Rose's creepy secret admirer is and then get him to back the Hell off!" Scorpius declared.
"Wait! So you're not the one who has been sending those gifts to her?" Marcus asked in surprise.
"No! Why would you think that it was me?"
"Because you fancy her," Marcus stated simply.
"I do not fancy Rose Weasley!"
"You're nice to her," Mike Goyle pointed out.
"And you stare at her all the time," Al added, with a smug look on his face that made Scorpius want to smack him.
"Yeah, and you get really jealous whenever any guy seems to be interested in her," Marcus said.
"I do not get jealous!" Scorpius said, indignantly.
"You hexed Aidan Finnigan when he tried to get Rose to tutor him."
"That's because he's a manwhore who was only trying to get into her pants."
"What about Frank Longbottom? You scared him off from asking Rose to the Yule Ball."
"I was just helping Rose out because I knew she didn't want to go with him and would feel bad if she had to say 'No' to him."
"And what about now? Your plan to get rid of her secret admirer isn't because you're jealous?" Marcus challenged.
"No! This is about the fact that her secret admirer is a creep who that he thinks he can prey on poor innocent Rose!"
"How do you know that her secret admirer is a creep? He seems alright to me. Rose certainly seems to like his attentions." Al commented.
Scorpius let out a strangled sound. What was wrong with Al? What was wrong with all of them? Why couldn't they see the danger lurking? Why couldn't they see that this creep was trying to seduce Rose and take advantage of her naivety and good nature?
"Obviously his intentions aren't pure," Scorpius ground out, "Otherwise he wouldn't feel the need to hide his identity. And he's practically stalking her! Sending her those notes and sneaking into her dorm at night to leave her gifts—that's clearly stalker behaviour!"
"Some people would consider that romantic," Al pointed out, "Anyways, maybe the reason that he's hiding his identity is because he's shy."
"Shy? Shy? He's a creep, Al! I mean rhyming 'bat' and 'cat' in a love poem? Who does that? That's a sure sign of a sick mind. No, whoever he is, he is up to no good. And that's why we need to come up with a plan to find out who he is and nip this in the bud before he can hurt Rose," Scorpius said, "Now who's with me?"
Scorpius surveyed the faces of his friends, all of whom were looking at him like he was a bit crazy, and he knew then that he was going to have to do this on his own.
"Fine! I'll find out who he is myself!" Scorpius declared.
"Alright you do that. I'm off to dinner then," Mike Goyle said, making a beeline for the door.
Marcus followed him, pausing before he reached the doorway to turn and ask "Are you sure you aren't the secret admirer?"
Scorpius just glared at him.
"Damn! I'm out five galleons then," Marcus muttered.
Then it was just Al and Scorpius left.
"You're a terrible cousin, you know, abandoning Rose in her time of need," Scorpius said accusingly, hoping to guilt Al into helping him.
"Scorpius, I think we both know that whoever this secret admirer is, he isn't out to get Rose. You just don't like the fact that he's making a move on her when you're too chicken to do so yourself. So my advice to you is to man up and do something before you lose Rose forever," Al said, and then he got up and left too, leaving Scorpius alone in the Slytherin dorms, cursing the fact that he didn't have better friends.
Scorpius would do something alright, he was going to find out who this bloody secret admirer was all on his own!
"Scorpius is trying to find out who the secret admirer is."
"You made all of the notes untraceable right?"
"Duh. I bet the first thing Rose did when she got that first gift from her secret admirer was try and use a spell on the note to find out who had sent it to her."
"She did! She was quite frustrated when it didn't work."
"Well, if Rose couldn't figure it out then there is no way Scorpius will be able to."
Scorpius was at a loss. Something as simple as figuring out who Rose's secret admirer was shouldn't be this difficult.
The night before he had tried to narrow down the number of suspects. He had made a list of all the male students around their age in the school and had then planned to eliminate all the people who weren't likely to be her secret admirer. He had been able to make little headway in his elimination of suspects however, because every time he had been about to cross somebody off as a suspect he would remember a time that they had smiled at Rose or a time she had helped them with their homework. After an hour, he had only managed to cross off Rose's cousins and all the males in school who he knew were currently dating somebody.
Evidently different tactics were in order, and so Scorpius decided to try and trace the secret admirer straight from the source. In potions, he stole from Rose's bag the note that she had received from her secret admirer that morning (along with another bouquet of roses). The note was a small piece of parchment with the words 'You're beautiful' written on it. Scorpius had had to resist the urge to crumple it up and throw it into the fireplace when he had first read it. Honestly, couldn't her secret admirer think up something better than 'You're beautiful'? Of course Rose was beautiful, with her sky blue eyes and vivid red hair—and Scorpius really needed to find out who this secret admirer was quickly before his sappiness began to rub off on him.
That evening, Scorpius waited until all of his dorm mates had left for dinner and then eagerly performed a tracing spell on the piece of parchment. Scorpius had sat there, waiting in anticipation for the name of the writer to show up on the parchment, and was bitterly disappointed when nothing showed up. He tried two more times just in case, but with the same results.
Scorpius was left unsure of what to do after this. He had been so certain that the secret admirer would be some idiot who wouldn't even think to make the notes he sent to Rose untraceable, but it appeared that this wasn't the case. Maybe the secret admirer was more competit—cleverer! He meant cleverer! Maybe the secret admirer was cleverer than he had thought.
Normally when he was stuck with a problem he would go to Rose for help, but that obviously wasn't an option. So, Scorpius was left to muse: What would Rose do in a situation like this?
A second later he jumped off his bed with the answer.
Albus had noticed that ever since that evening when Scorpius had declared his intention to catch Rose's secret admirer, Scorpius' moods had been growing increasingly fouler and fouler.
Scorpius was becoming increasingly short with anyone who tried to talk to him and there were now dark bags under his eyes, a sure sign that he wasn't sleeping well at night. Albus had continued to send secret gifts and notes to Rose, and each time she received one at the breakfast table Scorpius would grit his teeth and mutter something like "That little creep," or "I can't believe she's falling for this," under his breath. In potions, Scorpius looked like he wanted to gouge out somebody's eye whenever Rose talked about her secret admirer, and twice when he had been cutting their ingredients and Rose had mentioned her secret admirer, Scorpius had mutilated their roots beyond repair.
It was only a matter of time before Scorpius snapped, Albus thought, as he made his way up to the owlery that morning under the cover of his father's invisibility cloak. And the sooner Scorpius snapped the better, because it was getting expensive to send all these gifts to Rose. Plus, Albus was tired of having to sneak up to the owlery every day to send the gifts.
In the owlery Albus shed the invisibility cloak after making sure he was alone, and then pulled a small package out of his robes. Albus approached one of the school owls and said, "Deliver this to Rose Weasley, please," and the next thing Albus knew he felt a terrible stinging sensation and a second later his face was covered in boils.
Albus lay in a bed in the hospital wing cursing Scorpius Malfoy. The boils covering his face were extremely itchy and painful, and the draught Madame Patil had given him would take an excruciating twelve hours to make them fully disappear. When Madame Patil had told him that the boils spelled out the word 'Creep' he had known who the culprit was.
And to speak of the devil, in walked Scorpius Malfoy.
"You know," Scorpius said icily, "I was kind of surprised when I found out who I had caught in my trap."
"How did you do it?" Albus asked, genuinely curious.
"Do you know the taboo curse they used during the war, which would locate people who said a specific phrase or word? I made 'Deliver this to Rose Weasley' or any derivations of that taboo to say in the owlery, and then also added in a little boil jinx so whoever said it would get a nasty surprise. Of course, I wasn't expecting you to be the one on the receiving end."
"I'm impressed. That's pretty clever Scorpius."
"Don't sound so surprised Al," Scorpius snapped indignantly, "Though it was pretty clever of me-it took me four nights in the library to figure that one out. But back to why I am here-if you weren't already in the hospital with boils I'd be punching you in the face right now you know."
"I think I would have preferred that. These boils itch like hell," Al said.
"Well, I hope this teaches you a lesson about meddling, Albus. Honestly, I don't know what you were hoping to accomplish with this harebrained scheme of yours."
"I was hoping that you would finally get your head out of your arse and realize that you fancy Rose."
"Well in that case your scheme was entirely unsuccessful. For the last time Al, I don't fancy Rose Weasley. And unless you want some antlers to match your boils I would suggest that you refrain from meddling in my life," Scorpius spat, and then he stormed out.
"Would you stop laughing, Lily! This isn't bloody funny!" Albus fumed at his sister, who had come to visit him in the hospital wing.
"I totally need to ask Scorpius how he did that. That's brilliant!"
"I would think that you would be more sympathetic to my suffering. You're lucky that Scorpius didn't find out about your involvement in my scheme, otherwise you would have a face full of boils too."
"Yeah," Lily said, sobering up at the prospect of something marring her perfect skin, "So I guess the jig is up then, now that Scorpius knows."
"Not quite. Rose doesn't know yet."
Lily's face paled, "Oh Gods! Rose! What are we going to do when she finds out? She'll be devastated when she realizes her secret admirer isn't real. This is awful!"
Albus grinned, "No, this is perfect. Just listen to my plan Lily."
After listening to said plan, Lily was less than convinced. "Albus, I don't think that is a good idea. I think we should quit while we're ahead."
"But we're not ahead, Lily. Like you said-if Rose finds out there is no secret admirer she will be devastated. Do you want Rose's heart to be broken because of our ill-conceived scheme?"
"You were the one who thought up the scheme!"
"But you helped out, so you're responsible too."
"You're trying to use my guilt about Rose to manipulate me into doing what you want, aren't you?"
"Is it working?"
Please meet me at the astronomy tower tonight at 10:15.
Your Secret Admirer
"Scorpius! Scorpius!" Scorpius looked up to see Lily Potter running down the hallway after him. He stopped out of courtesy, even though he wasn't particularly in the mood to talk to any Potters considering what he had learned that morning.
"Yes?" Scorpius asked, politely.
Lily stopped running and paused a moment to catch her breath. "Al needs your help."
"Yes, well, unfortunately I'm not very happy with Al right now."
"I know, I know. Al told me what he did. But his meddling has created a gigantic mess because now that his plan has failed he needs to tell Rose that he was the secret admirer all along."
Scorpius cursed as he realized how crushed Rose would be if she found out the truth about her secret admirer. For a moment he considered refusing to help—Al had made his bed, let him lie in it—but then Scorpius thought of Rose crying, heartbroken, into her pillow when she found out the truth. The things he did for Rose Weasley.
"Alright, what do you want me to do?"
"Meet Al at the astronomy tower tonight at ten o'clock. He'll be out of the hospital by then and he's figured out a way to do this without breaking Rose's heart, but he'll need your help."
Scorpius stepped out onto the astronomy tower, "Al?" he called out, looking around for his friend.
There was a shimmer of movement from the corner of the astronomy tower, and a second later a grinning Albus Potter was revealed as he pulled the invisibility cloak off his head.
"Bloody Hell, Albus! I thought you said you were going to stop meddling!" Scorpius yelled.
Al grinned again, "Oops, I almost forgot. Silencio."
Unable to move or speak, Scorpius had to settle for glaring at Al and picturing in his head all the terrible things he was going to do to him after the spells wore off.
"Alright, now here's what is going to happen. You are going to listen to me say my piece, and then I'll release the spells. Okay?" Al said.
Scorpius just continued to glare at him.
"Alright, well a lot of people think you fancy Rose, but me, well I don't think you fancy Rose, Scorpius—I know you fancy her. You're nice to Rose. You enjoy spending time with her. You're always attentive when she's speaking. You know what her favourite flower is. You find her, or at least her legs, very attractive. You put up with her eccentricities. You actually care about what Rose thinks of you, and I don't mean to be rude, but let's be honest, you're usually a selfish git—except for when you're around Rose, then you put her first. Like tonight—you care enough about Rose's feelings that, even though I know that you are royally pissed at me right now, you agreed to come up here and meet with me for Rose's sake. Because you don't want to see her get hurt."
"Now maybe you want to write this all off by saying that Rose is just a friend, but let's consider some other facts. You also get insanely jealous when any other guy pays attention to Rose. And I think we both know that despite the fact that Rose hasn't been very interested in guys up until now, the main reason that she is still single is because you tend to scare off anybody who might be interested. And that claim that Rose isn't the type of girl that guys are attracted to is complete rubbish and we both know it! You just spent four bloody nights studying in the library in order to catch her secret admirer, and you hate the library! You even sacrificed your precious sleep for her!"
"So if you're going to use the 'just a friend line', let me tell you something, I'm your best friend, but somehow I don't think you would be willing to do those things for me. And as your best friend, I feel the need to inform you what everybody can see but you. You're in love with Rose Weasley. Now, I don't know what inane reason you have for continuing to try and deny that you're in love with Rose, maybe it's because you're scared of being in a meaningful relationship. Maybe you don't think you're good enough for her. Maybe you're just an idiot who likes to make things more difficult than they have to be. But whatever the reason, tonight you have a choice. Rose is going to be here in two minutes, and when she comes you can hide under the invisibility cloak and I'll tell Rose the truth about everything…Or you can hand me the cloak, and Rose will know that you're her secret admirer. Because I think we both know that you've been secretly admiring her all along."
"It's your choice, Scorpius." Al said, as he released the spells.
The first thing Scorpius did was punch Al in the face.
The second thing he did was pick up the invisibility cloak from the ground and throw it over Al.
The third thing he did was cast full body-bind and silencing curses on Al.
As he heard Rose's footsteps approaching the astronomy tower, his heart beat a little faster, Could he really be in love with Rose Weasley?
It was Rose herself who answered the question, when she stepped out onto the astronomy tower, saw Scorpius, smiled, and then ran over and gave him the most breathtaking kiss he had ever experienced.
"Al? Are you there? Al?" Lily called out, as she stepped out onto the astronomy tower to look for her brother whom she had been waiting on for the past three hours to report back on how his scheme had went.
Meanwhile an invisible, full body-binded, and silenced Albus Potter tried to mentally communicate with Lily and tell her 'I'm here! Scorpius Malfoy is a bloody ungrateful bastard who did this to me, even though I'm the reason that he's probably getting shagged right now!'
Lily evidently wasn't getting the message though, as she looked around the astronomy tower one last time, but seeing no one there turned around to go back to her dorm. She could find Al in the morning.
As the door to the astronomy tower closed, Albus' last hope disappeared. He would be in for a cold and lonely night. Albus supposed he should be grateful though, at least Rose and Scorpius had decided to go somewhere else to shag.
The prices one had to pay when their best friend was a fool and in love.