It's getting dark and it's all too quiet and I can't trust anything now…

~Haunted (Taylor Swift)~

)O(

The bedroom was dark, the sun having long since gone down, and Lily sat up on her bed, rocking slowly back and forth and feeling her heart beating quickly in her breast. It was quiet – too quiet – and though Rose sat patiently watching her younger cousin with all the concern that Lily could have possibly hoped for, she couldn't bring herself to trust her enough to say what was bothering her.

"Lily…" Rose said at last, quite timidly, "Lily, what's the matter? Why did you want to talk…?"

Lily shook her head, still rocking and not looking at her cousin. She stared out into the night sky, staring at the bright full moon and wondering where he was…

"I can't help you if you don't tell–"

"I love him!"

The words burst from Lily in a hysterical cry, cutting Rose off, and her body jolted with sobs. She buried her face in her hands. "I- I love him…"

"Love who, Lily?"

She froze up instantly, twisting her fingers in her lap and rocking back and forth again. Can't tell, can't tell her, can't tell anyone, no one will understand…

"Look at me, Lily."

Tears spilled down her cheeks, and she avoided meeting her cousin's eyes directly, staring at her shoulder instead. "He's my friend, Rose," she whispered. "I can't love him…"

"Shh…" Rose put her finger softly against Lily's lips, and Lily jolted automatically at the touch. "You can still love him, you know, even if he is your friend…"

"No," Lily whispered. "No, I can't, Rose, please understand… I can't… he's- he's too old, and Dad would think I was crazy… maybe I am crazy," she added with a small, strained laugh.

"You're not crazy," Rose told her. She stood, slowly walking to her cousin's side, then knelt on the bed beside her, taking her hand and stroking it slowly. "You're not crazy. I promise, all right, Lily? I won't think you're crazy… now tell me who it is, all right, Lily?"

Rose's voice, soft and compassionate and serious, calmed Lily some. She sat silently for a moment, and then said in a broken whisper what she'd barely dared to even think to herself, much less say out loud.

"Teddy Lupin."

"Hmm?"

"Teddy Lupin," she repeated, a little louder this time. It felt good – strange, but good – to say it out loud. "I'm in love with Teddy Lupin."


Author's Notes: Also for writerverse on LiveJournal – prompts "Ill met by moonlight", "compassion" and "empathy".