Disclaimer: I do not own the Harry Potter franchise or Scorpius Malfoy or Rose Weasley.
Angst alert. Dysfunctional relationships and poor decision making ahead!
Rose sighed as she fumbled for her keys outside her flat. Grumbling to herself angrily, she finally gave up and summoned them with her wand from the depths of her purse. With a scrape and a groan, the door swung open and Rose stepped inside. She quickly shrugged out of her cloak and hung it up on a hook next to the door.
It was only as she turned around that she noticed something was amiss. She detected an odd sound in her normally silent flat: the sound of quiet breathing, if she wasn't mistaken. Instantly on the alert, Rose slipped her wand out from her pocket and ventured quietly into the kitchen where the noise was coming from.
There, slumped on the table, was the unmistakable form of Scorpius Hyperion Malfoy, fast asleep. Rose felt her heart skip a beat a she looked him over. He looked like shite, to be honest, she thought to herself critically. His robes were wrinkled and obviously slept in, there was a small shadow of blond stubble on his chin, and deep purple shadows under his closed eyes.
"Scorpius?" she called gently.
"Scorpius?" she tried again, a little bit louder.
Huffing in annoyance, she finally nudged him lightly on the shoulder.
"Whazz 'at?" he asked, blinking blearily up at her as he straightened up in his seat.
"Scorpius?" Rose asked plainly, "What are you doing here?"
He started and immediately jumped up from his seat. "Rose," he said quickly, "I, er, sorry for barging in on you," he apologised, hands outstretched. "I… er…"
"Spit it out, Scorpius," she said, rolling her eyes as she put her wand away.
"I didn't have anywhere else to go," he said miserably.
"Finally came to your senses and left Zabini, did you?" she asked, grimacing.
"I… no," he said quietly.
"No?" Rose asked doubtfully, hands on her hips. "Last I heard you two were happily planning a lifetime commitment together."
"Not…" Scorpius tried, "She cheated on me," he said, scowling.
Rose instantly squashed the brief feeling of smugness that bloomed from inside her chest. "Is that right?" she drawled, fighting to keep her expression neutral.
He nodded weakly. "And you can tell me all the I told you so's you want, just can I stay here for tonight? Gringotts is closed, and I just left her this morning. I would've booked a room at the Leaky, but Mrs Longbottom's always had it in for me ever since I broke up with Mia in fifth year. Al's away on his honeymoon and Alex mostly living at St. Mungo's at this point because of her mum and Mia's finally started teaching at Hogwarts-"
"Scorpius," Rose said, cutting him off with a hand, "I get it. Everyone else is busy so you're at your last resort-"
"No," he interjected immediately, "Not last resort, Rose, I regret that we haven't-"
"Shut it, Scorpius," Rose said tightly. "I can see you're a right mess, don't deny it," she said sharply. "You can stay here. Park your sorry arse in my spare room tonight, and be out by morning."
And with that, she left him and swept away into her bedroom.
As soon as the door swung shut behind her, Rose collapsed onto her bed, eyes squeezed shut as if she could block out all the memories and emotions that were quickly resurfacing at Scorpius's abrupt reappearance.
He was going to be married to Cordelia Zabini, prettiest girl at Hogwarts and the predicted first female minister of magic in forty years.
"She's no good for you."
Scorpius looked up at her, incensed. "What right do you have to judge her?"
"I-" Rose said, unsure.
"I bet you're just jealous," he sneered. "You've had it in for her ever since the beginning, and Cordy's been nothing but nice to you this entire fucking time."
"And how would you know that?" Rose demanded, flaring up at once. "You've never asked me if I liked her. You never asked me what I felt about her. You never even told me you were engaged until I received the invitation by owl. By fucking owl, Scorpius? Do I mean so little to you that you could pass me off as just one of your old school friends?"
"Course you're not," Scorpius said, but she could see the hesitance in his eyes.
"Oh really?" Rose asked, laughing mirthlessly. "Because that's exactly how it looks to me."
"We've been drifting apart for years, don't deny it," he argued.
"Who's fault is that? Because it's certainly not mine," Rose said heatedly. "Ever since we graduated we've been seeing less and less of each other, no thanks to your girlfriend. Do you know what she told me after the ceremony? Stay away from Scorpius Malfoy. Who the hell does that?"
"Well, of course she would!" Scorpius interjected at once.
Rose's eyes narrowed dangerously. "And why would she? We were best friends. Who had the right to come between that?"
Scorpius shook his head, his expression grim. "She could tell you were becoming too attached to me. I told you I was seeing her, and yet you kept pushing."
"What the hell does that mean?" she exclaimed.
"It means, she knew you fancied me!"
Rose stared at him, her face taking on an ashen hue as it drained of all colour. "What?" she rasped.
"You fancied me," Scorpius said balefully, unheeding of Rose's distress. "And it made both of us uncomfortable."
"I… I didn't…" Rose said, her heart breaking.
"Of course you did, we could all see it," he told her scornfully. "I just wish you weren't so obvious about it. Cordelia noticed right away, so of course she was a bit defensive."
It was that whore's name that did it. "Scorpius Malfoy," Rose pronounced carefully as she ignored the burning pain in her chest, "I didn't fancy you, not then, not now, and not ever! I was so protective of you because I wanted to show you that you didn't need her."
"But that's just it, Rose," Scorpius said, "I do need her."
"No you don't! This is exactly what I'm talking about!" Rose exclaimed angrily. "She's using you, Scorpius. Can't you see that? She's got you wrapped around her fucking finger, waiting on her hand and foot because she's got you convinced that she's filling some hole in your life that doesn't even exist in the first place! I hate how you've become so dependent on her, like she's the light of your life, and the rest of us don't matter."
"Don't you mean, like you don't matter?" he pressed.
"You're impossible," Rose exclaimed.
"Why can't you just admit that you fancied me? Is it because you still do?"
"You are so damn full of yourself, you can't see what's in front of your fucking face," she fumed.
"So you're angry that I didn't notice sooner?" he asked belligerently.
Rose actually stomped her foot in frustration. She jammed her hands in her pockets to keep herself from grabbing her wand on the nearby table and hexing him in anger. "No. Get this message loud and clear, Malfoy: I don't fancy you, hell I don't even like you right now. I think Zabini's a lying bitch, and I think you're the biggest prat in the world if you think she's the best you could do. Good bye, Malfoy, and in case you were wondering, this is me refusing your invitation."
And with that, she grabbed her wand, lit up the wedding invitation he was still holding on fire, and slammed the door behind her. She Apparated away from Malfoy Manor just after she heard his yelp of pain as he singed his fingers.
"Rose? Rose Weasley?"
She opened her eyes, drawn out of her reverie by the sound of knocking on her bedroom door.
Oh right. Scorpius.
"What is it?" she called, trying to keep her raging emotions out of her voice.
"I just wanted to ask… do you want some tea? I already made myself some."
"No," she said shortly, drawing her knees off the floor and to her chest.
"Are you sure? I made more than enough," he wheedled.
"No thank you, Scorpius," she said, flicking her wand at the door and smiling with grim satisfaction as she heard the lock click.
She heard him sigh. "Well, I'll leave it on the stove then, if you change your mind." His footsteps faded into the distance as he shuffled away.
Rose tossed and turned all night, and when she finally drifted off to sleep, her dreams were filled with memories of Scorpius, warped and twisted into something terrible.
In the morning she woke up with an unsettling feeling of dread in the pit of her stomach. She just lay on her bed for a moment, trying to dissipate the remnants of the dream. He's not here, he's left, she mentally chanted to herself as she stared blankly up at the plain white ceiling of her bedroom. Eventually, she knew she had to get ready for work. With a sigh, she tossed off the covers and unlocked the door. After passing over the threshold of her living room, she stopped, eyes narrowing on the familiar figure sitting in her kitchen. She marched up to Scorpius to demand flatly, "What are you still doing here? It's Monday, so Gringotts is open. Go rent a room somewhere and get out of my flat."
He cringed slightly at her words and dropped the paper he had been reading. "I… That is, Rosie, I…"
Rose sighed. "What do you want, Scorpius?" she asked plainly, turning away from him to pull out a bowl from a cupboard above the sink.
"I just wanted to talk to you," he said in a rush.
"Talk?" she quoted, raising her eyebrows questioningly.
"Yeah, talk," he said nervously, "Because I don't like the way we left things last time."
"Yeah, well, that happens when you accuse your best of having a hidden agenda," she said succinctly, still not looking at him as she poured cereal and milk into the bowl.
"Yeah," he said sheepishly, and Rose heard something hit the kitchen table. His fist, probably. "That was a mistake."
She turned and saw him. He was staring at his hands, tracing meaningless lines on the tabletop. He also looked like he hadn't slept at all the circles underneath his eyes were more pronounced, and it was clear he hadn't had a chance to brush his hair.
"You…" he licked his lips and stared at me. "You aren't going to yell at me?" he asked nervously.
"I think I said all I needed to last time," Rose said shortly as she sat down next to him and began to eat. "I really don't have much else to say to you."
He ducked his head, embarrassed. "Okay." He paused. "I deserved that."
She only nodded as her mouth was full of cereal.
He sighed and squared his shoulders. "I just wanted to say I'm sorry. Okay? I was wrong, you were right. Go on, rub it in."
Rose turned to glare at him, and he wilted under her harsh gaze. She swallowed. "Why the bloody hell would I rub something like that in? I'm not sadistic. I know you're not over her. Or have you forgotten I spent seven years knowing you inside and out?"
It felt like a knife was twisting in her gut, pulling up pain and emotions in equal measure.
"We were best mates. Zabini may have changed you beyond all recognition, but I still remember that insecure fifteen-year-old boy who spent an entire year strutting about the castle because he didn't want anyone to know how much his mother's illness was wearing him down." She felt her lips turn up into a wry smile. "That is, except his best mate Rose Weasley." She paused as she tried to get a better handle on herself. "Merlin that was so long ago," Rose sighed.
He was staring at her.
"So," she said, meeting his gaze squarely, "You can't pretend anything. I know you don't want me to yell at you. It won't make you feel any better, and it'll just cut me up inside when you're gone. Because," her breath hitched, but she was determined, "Because I regret what I said too. You were right; we had been growing apart, and I just didn't want to see it." She got up and placed her empty bowl in the sink.
"You should've told me sooner how you felt about Cordy," Scorpius said quietly from behind her.
"Yes, I should've," Rose agreed with a sad smile that he couldn't see.
"Do you want to hear what happened?" he asked hesitantly.
"No," she said firmly. "I really don't."
"Oh, okay," he said timidly.
She sighed and rolled her eyes as she turned to face him. She leant back against he sink and surveyed him coolly. "Do you want to tell me, Scorpius?" she asked with a tinge of exasperation.
She made a face. "Just as I thought. Too soon."
He shrugged. "So… are we good?" he asked, his voice hopeful.
Rose inhaled sharply. "No," she said, shaking her head. "Scorpius, it's been five years since we were close. The whole engagement thing last year was just the final ingredient to the cauldron. I… don't know how to fit you into my life anymore. You've changed. Merlin knows I have I'm practically a different person than when you last saw me. A lot has happened since then."
He slumped in his seat.
"What did you hope would happen?" she asked him pointedly. "That you'd apologise, I'd forgive you, and we'd start back again when we left off at Platform 9 ¾ from final train ride from Hogwarts?"
Scoprius mumbled something indistinguishable.
Years ago Rose would have pressed him to repeat what he had said, but instead of curiosity all she felt was an odd kind of apathy.
"Right, well," Rose said, stalking past him to her bedroom to get ready for work. "You can see yourself out."
"Rose!" he called.
She paused and turned to regard him, still sitting at her kitchen table.
"If… I can't find anything… can I stay here one more night?"
She sighed. "No," she said with finality.
"But Rose…" he pleaded, getting off the chair and walking towards her. "I'm desperate here…"
"I can see that," she snapped. "But I don't feel comfortable with you here."
He stopped and she saw him swallow visibly as he prepared for another argument.
She ran a hand through her hair as she watched him think. Grimacing, she said, "Fine. Stay here one more night. Don't use my toothpaste, and don't talk to me."
She missed his small smile, as she was too busy slamming her bedroom door behind her to get ready for work.
Rose was distracted the entire day. Her article was scattered and full of misprints. Her editor even called on her after lunch to inquire if anything was wrong. She denied anything, of course, but she couldn't help dwelling upon the past she'd tried so stringently to forget. It made her forgetful, and it made her mess up.
But, nevertheless, he was an ache she still remembered every time she let her guard down.
Scorpius Malfoy was no good for her.
He was flighty, he was unpredictable and he always acted before he thought everything through.
This was why she never told him he was right, all those years ago. He wouldn't have understood. They'd worked so well as friends, but she new the moment it progressed to something more everything would fall to pieces. Those little things about him ticked her off about him would be blown way out of proportion of they started dating. Because she did that. Growing up with her parents, she knew she had some sort of perfection complex. She expected the best, and when it didn't deliver, she didn't cope well.
With all these thoughts swirling around her head, she entered her flat later that day and wasn't all that unsurprised to find Scorpius Malfoy reading the paper in her living room.
"Hi Rose," he said, looking up as he saw her.
"Hello," she said stiffly.
And that was all.
The next few days passed in the very same manner. She'd wake up, go to work, make small talk with Scorpius as she ate breakfast, leave and come back. He'd be waiting somewhere in her flat, they'd make more small talk and she'd go to bed to start the whole routine over again.
She supposed it was inevitable that they couldn't go on this way.
Exactly a week later, everything changed.
The first half of the day passed like the ones previous, but for the first time in seven days she came home to an empty flat.
"Scorpius?" she called, a strange feeling of sadness and relief in her chest.
There wasn't an answering call.
Shaking her head at her foolishness – she knew it couldn't continue, and of course she didn't want it to – she took off her coat and set her things down. With a sigh, she settled down at the kitchen table to read Scorpius's abandoned Prophet.
It was only as she finished reading the front section that she heard the front door creak open. Astonished, she swung around to see the sight of Scorpius Malfoy carrying to heavy grocery bags into her flat.
She didn't even know how he had a key.
"Oh!" he exclaimed in surprise. "Rose! You're here already."
"Yeah," she said slowly, still taking in the sight of him in. "You went shopping?" she asked with raised eyebrows.
"Er, yeah," he said awkwardly. "I mean, I have been staying here for the past week."
"And are you planning on staying another?" she asked, irked.
He shrugged as he deposited the bags in her kitchen.
"Are you even trying to find another flat?" Rose asked exasperatedly as she followed him.
"Of course I am!" he exclaimed, but she couldn't read his expression as his back was to her.
Still, something sounded off. "I don't think you are," she accused, her tone bordering on incredulous. "I think you've grown comfortable here!"
Scorpius froze, and Rose knew she had been right.
"Of course not!" he blustered, a fraction too late.
"I can't believe you," Rose said disbelievingly. "What the hell have you been doing all day if you haven't been looking for a flat?"
"Working," he said, turning to stare at her. "I have a job now, Rose, in case you hadn't caught on."
"Oh?" she asked, eyebrows raised in surprise.
"My hours just aren't as long as yours," Scorpius said, rolling his eyes.
"I see. So you have an income?" she said with a forced calm.
"Yes," he said with a touch of pride.
"Then what the hell are you still doing here?" she demanded furiously. "You obviously have the means to move out. Why haven't you?"
He instantly recoiled. "Because I like it here," he said plainly. "I don't have to answer any questions about Cordelia, nobody knows I'm here so I don't have to fight off the press, and is it so hard to believe that I like living with you?"
Rose groaned in frustration as she raked a hand through her hair, making the curls even more frazzled than normal. "But thing is, Scorpius," she spat, "Everything I heard in that list I, I, I! Have you ever given any thought to what I have to say about it?"
He paused, his face falling slightly.
Rose took a deep breath. "Because I don't like it. I don't like having you here. I've only been hosting you because I thought you had nowhere else to go. And now I find out that you've been more than capable of leaving and you hadn't told me any of this? What the hell made this whole situation seem okay with you?"
"Well, what do you think about it, Rose?" he asked softly as she paused for breath.
"Better late than never, right?" he asked, giving her a brave smile. "I'll ask now. Why is it so bad that I move in?" He paused. "For good. I'll even split the rent with you."
"Because- because!" she spluttered, for once at a loss for words.
His smile grew wider, and it only served to anger her even more.
"No reason?" he asked, the old drawl creeping into his tone.
She fumed, silently inventing reason after reason why he couldn't stay. After a split second, she picked one. It wasn't the whole truth, but it was enough and would hopefully get his arse out of her flat. "Because we've both changed. You can't just fly in here and expect everything to be the same! I've told you this before!"
"Why not?" he asked softly. "Why can't we be friends again, Rose?"
"Because we've both changed too much!" she interjected.
He shook his head. "You keep saying that, but I don't think that's quite true. I mean, you still leave your laundry everywhere. You still prefer bananas to apples and hate oranges. You still read the entire Prophet every day, even the boring bits."
Rose clenched her jaw and tried to think through her words before she said anything she would truly regret. "You don't get it do you?" she asked, and for all the menace in her voice there was still a tinge of sadness. "So what if those little things are the same? They're not what was I was talking about at all. I, as a person, as a whole person, have changed. I'm not that same little girl who would bend the rules just for you, or who would sit up late with you and talk for hours on end."
"Why not?" he asked, regarding her curiously.
She actually let out a small scream of frustration. "Because, Scorpius, you left me. You chose to run off an get another life without me, with Cordelia Zabini."
"But I tried-" he inserted, but Rose ignored him.
"You knew I fancied you!" she cried. "And that's why we haven't been the same since!"
He drew up short, completely dumbfounded. "W-what?" he croaked.
"So how the bloody hell was I supposed to do?" she continued loudly. "I was your friend. She was your fucking girlfriend. I knew you had to choose, and you wouldn't choose me." She shook her head. "So, yeah, that apology you made was all for naught. You were right: I was jealous, I fancied you, and Zabini should've told me to stay away." She turned away from him. "Now will you please leave?"
Instead of the sudden crack of Apparation, Rose heard him take a step closer to her. She felt his hand brush against her hair, and finally come to rest on her shoulder as he slowly turned her around to face him.
"How do you know I wouldn't have chosen you?" he asked softly.
She stared at him, wide-eyed. "You would've…?"
He looked away, and Rose's heart stuttered in her chest. "Merlin, I don't know Rose, it was so long ago."
"But there was a chance?" she asked, hating the earnest tone in her voice.
He didn't answer. "But, Rose," he asked pleadingly, "Why would you make that choice for me?"
"Because I knew how it looked!" she exclaimed. "If you felt anything for me beyond friendship you would have acted on it years ago."
"But Rose, you never gave me a bloody chance!"
"What?" she gaped before letting out a grating laugh. "I gave you nothing but chances. Didn't you ever wonder why I never dated anybody after fifth year, despite numerous requests?" She grimaced. "Of course you did," she said in a softer voice. "Zabini must have summed it up all for you."
"But... Rose. I still don't understand why you ever said anything!"
Rose could hear her blood thundering in her veins in anger. "I don't know why you're doing this," she hissed. "I told you I didn't want to go over this with you. I told you I wasn't ready to relive the past - I fucking told you to get the fuck out of my flat!"
Behind him, a light bulb shattered, suddenly throwing Rose into sharp relief.
And for the first time since he entered her flat a week ago, Scorpius saw what she meant by being a different person. For the first time in his life, he was scared of Rose Weasley.
But, Scorpius was always known for being reckless and making bad decisions. So, in true Scorpius Malfoy fashion, he threw caution to the winds and kissed her.
At first Rose couldn't react. Her brain had gone numb. Scorpius Malfoy couldn't be kissing her. Here, in her own flat. When she was ready to hex him into an oblivion in anger.
But then she realised how nice his lips felt against hers. Warm pressure against her mouth, tongue probing further. She eagerly opened her mouth to give him more access, and he responded with deepening the kiss even further. It was heated, it was passionate; it was everything Rose had been missing since Scorpius left her life all those years ago.
Quickly, she pulled he lapels of his collar closer so she could feel him flush against her. A hand quickly wandered down to cup her arse, and another began pulling her shirt out of her trousers. She felt her hands skim down his chest to eagerly unbuckle his belt, all the while never breaking the kiss. Pretty soon, they were stumbling backwards toward her bedroom.
The rest of the night passed in a blur.
Rose awoke the next morning feeling particularly sated. Blinking, she stared at the white ceiling for a while as the memories of the night before caught up with her. And then, all of the sudden, instead of the fire that had been simmering deep down inside her for the past week, ice froze in her veins.
Because she knew, as wrong as last night had been, nothing could compare with how wrong the situation right now was.
Rose sat up in bed, clutching her sheet around her body even though there was nobody there to see anything. She was looking blankly ahead, not really seeing anything at all.
Finally, it struck her that she was completely alone.
Scorpius had finally left her flat for good.
Just like she had demanded so many times the entire week before.
AN: Bonus points if you know the song the title comes from. I, living under a rock and all, just heard it yesterday - despite that it's one of the most popular songs on youtube - and have been listening to it on repeat ever since. I prefer Ingrid Michaelson's cover, personally.
As to the anachronisms of the key and light bulb: Rose's flat is in Muggle London.
I've never written such heavy Angst/Drama before. Actually this was supposed to be a drabble to procrastinate my King Lear essay... yeah, I got a bit carried away.