Failed Resolutions and Other Traditions
A/N: Hello readers!
I've seen New Years stories and Christmas stories, but no broken resolution stories come to mind. This was supposed to be a story doodle of sorts, just something to write that didn't involve any thought and was never going to be posted, but then I kept writing... Anyway, enjoy!
Every January 1st, Rose promised herself that things were going to change. She had made the same resolutions since her sixth year at Hogwarts; lose those extra five pounds that made her butt just a little larger than it should be, eat more leafy greens, and stop sleeping with Scorpius Malfoy. For five consecutive years she had failed to achieve any of them.
She was resigned to the fact that her butt would always be a little too big, and had long ago accepted that leafy greens were a level of disgusting that shouldn't go anywhere near the mouth of any sensible human being, but was she couldn't understand was the Scorpius thing. She didn't even like him!
"Rose, you have that glow about you again," Lily murmured, keeping her voice low so that none of the other assembled Weasleys would hear. Just as they did every Sunday, the entire Weasley clan was gathered at the Burrow for their weekly dinner.
Rose only answered after making sure that no one had overheard her cousin's comment. "Scorpius grabbed me as I was leaving the office. I tried to tell him that my resolution was to stay away from him, but he just laughed, told me I said that every year, and..."
"Ravished you for most of the night," Lily finished. She put a finger to her eye to indicate that the beauty spell Rose had cast to hide the huge bags under her eyes had faded – not that she needed the hint to guess what had happened between her cousin and Scorpius last night. Those nights were something of a common occurrence with Rose and Scorpius.
Blushing while looking half mortified, Rose nodded. "I tried to put a stop to it, but I just melt once he touches me."
Having heard that for years, Lily just rolled her eyes and turned back to her food. She had been listening to Rose's patheticness about Scorpius since sixth year. The rumour that had travelled around the school was that the pair had disappeared from a school wide party at the start of sixth year and had been balanced on some kind of precipice ever since. Neither would admit to a relationship and their rows were legendary, but when they thought they were alone was another story.
Rose stared at herself in the mirror; Lily was right, she did have a glow about her. She had tried dating other people, but they were never able to extract the same reaction from her that Scorpius could with just his stupid smirk.
Some people's guilty pleasure was sweets, hers was Scorpius.
It had all started in sixth year. Despite what Lily believed, she and Scorpius had not engaged in a drunken night of shagging. Okay, there had been shagging, but it had been completely – mostly – sober.
What no one knew – at least Rose had never told anyone and she didn't think Scorpius had either – was that it had all started with a bet.
Rose and Scorpius had always been fiercely competitive in Quidditch and with their grades, but it had always been a distant thing, never going past some gloating in the corridors or scowls during classes. The night of the party everything changed. For the first time in their entire lives, Rose and Scorpius were left alone together.
Scorpius sat down on the opposite end of the secluded sofa that Rose occupied and it took less than five minutes for all Hell to break loose.
Their conversation went as follows:
"Still stewing about that Transfiguration test you nearly failed, Weasley?"
"I only scored half a mark less than perfect, Malfoy, and I really don't want to hear about how you got top marks again."
"Still bitter, I see."
"Why are you even here, Malfoy?"
"I thought it strange that you were moping over here at a party instead of in the library where you usually lurk."
"You'd never talk to me without ulterior motives, drop the act and tell me what you actually want."
"Fine. I was dared to snog the frostiest girl in the school."
"And I immediately came to mind, or was I chosen specifically?"
"I get half of the winnings."
Without waiting for a confirmation, Rose had climbed into Malfoy's lap and pressed her lips to his. She hadn't been expecting the fireworks, or the way everything in the background faded as he touched her. She certainly hadn't expected him to grab her hand and drag her down to the dungeons, where he proceeded to take her virginity.
"How was the family dinner?"
Rose jumped and whipped around at the sound of an unexpected voice behind her. "What are you still doing here, Scorpius?"
"I was too tired yesterday to last more than once. You know how I like to shag you more in January just to rub in the fact that you're never going to achieve that resolution of yours."
Not once had Rose told him of her resolution. In fact, she hadn't told anyone except Lily about her failed attempts; it was just too humiliating that she continued to fail.
She wanted to ask Scorpius how in the world he knew about her resolutions, but that road, she knew from experience, would only lead to frustration – and possibly shagging him, depending on how set she was on getting answers.
Scorpius ignored her scowl. Rose's moods rarely affected him if he could get his hands on her before she started hexing. Despite her efforts to hide it, Scorpius knew that she always melted as soon as he got his fingers in her hair or kissed her. He actually knew a lot about her without her having to say anything, which was handy with someone as volatile as her. His ability to read her was actually primarily self preservation.
"I think it's best that you leave, Scorpius."
Entitled prick that he was, it didn't even occur to him to do as she'd asked. He advanced towards her, smirking at the warning look she shot him as he backed her up against the bathroom counter, trapping her there.
"I'm warning you now, Scorpius Malfoy, this isn't going to happen again. This year I'm going to stick to my resolution." Rose had to use an inhuman amount of willpower to keep herself from turning into putty as he leaned his body against hers. It was instinctual to melt into him and resisting this urge felt like it went against her very being. She somehow managed it though.
Halfway bent towards her, intent on stealing a kiss, Scorpius paused and read the resolve in her eyes. His smirk fell away and his lips tightened as her steely look didn't fade away to her usual bedroom eyes. Rose's stomach dropped as his sultry, inviting look hardened into a scornful gaze that he had never before directed towards her.
"If you're really that adamant to stay away from me, then I'm gone. Congratulations, you're going to achieve your resolution this year."
He was out the door before Rose even had the chance to fully process the implications of his words.
The first day after her fallout with Scorpius wasn't as triumphant as Rose had expected. She spent the morning moping around her apartment and then attempted a disastrous blind date that Lily had thought was a good idea.
There had been nothing wrong with the man. He had been perfectly polite, even complimenting her on her hairstyle. At the end of the night though, Rose had turned her cheek towards him when he leaned in to kiss her. His hair wasn't blond, his eyes weren't a sparkling silver that dared her to kiss him, and not once had he said something that made her want to slap him.
"You're like one of those sad addicts that are fully in withdrawal and are trying to pretend they only have a cold," Lily observed. She had invaded her cousin's apartment to see how the blind date had gone, only to find Rose buried in a mound of blankets and sulking.
Lily started to pull the top layers of blankets off of her cousin. "That's just what the addicts say. You have a problem and admitting that is the first step to recovery."
"My resolution was to stop sleeping with Scorpius and this year I'm going to actually manage it."
Pityingly, Lily patted her cousin on the head. "You poor, delusional thing." She recommenced ripping off the blankets while Rose tried to work out exactly how she was delusional.
When it became clear that Rose was never going to figure it out, Lily rolled her eyes. "In your entire life, you've only ever slept with Scorpius Malfoy. Whenever you try to date anyone else, they're not blond enough, or they're too agreeable, or they don't pull your hair hard enough when you ask."
Rose blushed. "I was drunk when I told you that and you promised never to bring it up again."
"My point is that you're clearly in love with Scorpius and the poor boy's crazy for you. I don't see why you're so set on staying away from him."
"He's horrible for me," Rose mumbled, struggling to hold on to the last blanket and Lily yanked on it.
"He's not!" Lily stumbled a bit as she finally wrenched the blanket away, revealing Rose, still wearing the dress she'd donned for her date the night before. While Lily grimaced at Rose's utterly pitiable existence, she didn't comment on it. She had to make the idiot understand. "He's an arsehole and horrible to everyone, but you wilt when he's not here and glow when he is! It's downright depressing how affected you are by him. You've been in love with him for years and everyone knows it but you!"
"I'm not." Rose was as stubborn as both her parents combined when she wanted to be, and sometime in sixth year after the whole virginity incident, she had decided that Scorpius was a habit that needed to be broken and the idea had stuck within her mind. Over the years it had only grown and festered there, getting bigger and more formidable with each passing month.
Lily glared for a moment, but Rose was too busy trying to burrow under her pillow to notice. "I refused to be related to such patheticness!" She turned on her heel, stomping away.
"Where are you going?" Rose asked, only one of her eyes peeking out from under her fluffy shelter.
"To get Scorpius. You two are going to sort this out so I don't have to keep coming over here to make sure you haven't died under the mountain of angst you insist on carting around with you."
"Wait!" Rose called after her, the pleading in her tone only making Lily more determined to get Scorpius.
"If he's as bad as you, it's going to take me at least ten minutes. I suggest you use that time to have a shower; you're disgusting."
"I thought I was an addict! I need rehab, not a supply of drugs!"
Lily was already gone.
Scorpius had an apartment just down the street from Rose, something that Lily had always suspected wasn't a coincidence. He was at Rose's apartment almost as much as he was at his own. Lily took the time to walk to his apartment instead of just using the Floo network, mostly because Rose really needed to wash off her raccoon eyes. Lily was already doing her cousin a favour by sorting out her twisted romantic life, she didn't need to suffer looking at Rose's sad raccoon eyes and depressing failed date wrinkled dress.
Though she had never visited Scorpius' apartment before, Lily knew where it was and had no trouble finding the place. She knocked confidently and only had to wait a moment before Scorpius opened the door.
"What do you want?"
Lily ignored his less than welcoming greeting. She shoved him to the side, strode into his apartment, and then surveyed the place with her hands on her hips.
"If you're here about Rose you're wasting your time. I'm not giving in this time." He didn't need to fill in the blanks, Lily knew that he was fed up with loving a woman who treated him like a habit that needed to be broken. A man's pride could only be stretched so far before he had to draw the line. Lily would have almost been sympathetic if the whole mess wasn't entirely of Rose's making.
"This whole mess is partially your fault, you know," she said as she looked him up and down. He was in better shape than Rose, clearly having bathed recently, but there were bags under his eyes and he was more hostile than usual.
"How is her stubbornness my fault?"
"You've loved her for at least three years and still haven't told her!" Lily had kind of been hoping for a teensy little flash of surprise or something, but apparently Scorpius was aware of how transparent he had been. If only Rose would smarten up and notice as well.
"What good would that do?"
Lily whacked him upside the head. She was so angry with his stupidity that she didn't even take the time to enjoy the startled look on his face. "Maybe if she knew that you were looking for more than shagging all the time and annoying the hell out of each other, she wouldn't be trying so hard to get herself away from you!"
Taking advantage of the brief moment of contemplation that settled over Scorpius, Lily grabbed the idiot by his ear and Disapparated.
Rose was showered, dressed, and had moved on to trying to get a brush through her mop of wet hair by the time Lily burst into her bedroom, dragging a protesting Scorpius by the ear. She thrust him towards where Rose, who was seated at the vanity table with a brush stuck in her hair, and stood with her hands on her hips, waiting for the apologies and professions of love to commence.
Lily was right about one thing; Rose really was like an addict. As soon as Scorpius was back in the room, that little piece of emptiness inside of her that no amount of ice cream had been able to fix was suddenly all warm and squishy again, as it should be.
Rose suspected that she could go on blind dates with all of Lily's coworkers and would still find them all lacking in things that Scorpius had in abundance. The flipping of her stomach at just the sight of him seemed to be suggesting that anyone but the real Scorpius would always fall a little short in some area. It was a terrifying thought.
To distract herself from her rapidly beating heart, Rose set to work on dislodging the hairbrush that was halfway towards lost forever in her hair.
Having seen her use this tactic to ignore him in the past, Scorpius just rolled his eyes and yanked the brush, something that had always worked in the past. Unfortunately, this time the brush was more tangled than usual and his yank threw her off balance on her backless stool, leaving her on the floor, her head resting on his feet and tears in her eyes.
Both of them ignored Lily as Scorpius dove to his knees and grabbed Rose's head. "I'm sorry, are you okay?" he asked anxiously, threading his hands in her hair to feel for lumps from her impact with the floor.
Rose blinked away her tears, pushed Scorpius away from her with enough force to make him fall back onto his butt, and snatched her brush from where it had fallen. "What have I told you about yanking the brush out of my hair like that?" She held up the brush, showing him the handful of hairs that had been plucked from her scalp.
"I thought you liked it when I pulled your hair."
"Not when you yank it out!"
Forgotten, Lily watched the pair with her arms crossed and a disapproving frown on her face. They were headed towards a fight, not the dramatic confession scene that she had been hoping for when she'd thrown Scorpius into the room. A fight would just put the pair of them back several steps.
While Rose and Scorpius yelled at each other, Lily slunk over to them. They didn't notice her standing right behind them, but they did notice when she put a hand on the back of each of their faces and smooshed their heads together. Rose and Scorpius were so surprised that they didn't resist or even complain that their mouths were probably bruised from the impact.
"Hugo and I voted," Lily said while they were still frozen in shock, "And it's his turn to deal with Rose's angst next time. You both know he wouldn't be as nice as me about it, so sort out this shite now and be done with the angst already. If Hugo gets involved, someone may get hurt."
They took her suggestion with a little too much enthusiasm. Scorpius was the first to get over his surprise. He threaded his hands through Rose's hair for the second time, using his grip reposition her head in a more comfortable position.
Despite being angry with him, Rose eagerly responded by crawling into his lap and then a moment later shoving him onto his back, deepening the kiss.
"I wanted you to kiss and make up, but this is a little extreme," Lily said, looking a little disturbed as Scorpius' hand travelled up the back of Rose's shirt and unhooked her bra. She tried pelting them with small items from Rose's vanity, but they refused to stop.
Eventually, Lily gave up and left the room. "I didn't mean for you to have sex, there are serious conversations that need to be had!" she yelled through the door.
Scorpius grabbed a handful of Rose's hair, yanking it back to expose her throat to his lips.
"She's right, you know," Rose said in a breathy voice.
Ignoring her, he gently pushed her away and then stood so that he could more easily remove his clothes. He motioned for Rose to do the same when she just watched him hungrily. "You're not the only one with a resolution this year. Mine's to finally make you my girlfriend, and I don't intend to fail."
"You're so romantic," Rose mumbled sarcastically, shuddering when Scorpius got impatient with her and slid her pants down her legs. He licked her bellybutton on the way back up and laughed when she slapped his head.
"I'll give you romantic." The statement was punctuated with a little shove that had her flopped down on the bed. Scorpius' eyes lost their amusement and turned completely serious. "I'm in love with you."
Rose smiled. There was an elation rising inside of her that seemed to be her answer to his confession, but she wasn't quite ready to voice it yet. Fortunately, Scorpius seemed to instinctively know this, because he purposely ruined the tenderness of the moment.
"Now I hope the strengthening spells on your bed are up to date, because I'm not stopping if that bloody weak leg snaps off again."
Rose laughed and held out her arms to him.
"Please tell me you handled it," Hugo begged, not wanting anything to do with his sister's sex life. He had a plan of course - being the son of Hermione Granger-Weasley meant that he always had a plan - but Hugo suspected that neither Rose nor Scorpius would appreciate being forced to face their feelings while trapped in a cage with an underfed lion. Hugo always had a plan, but that didn't mean it was a good plan. It was just best for all involved that he stayed out of the whole thing.
"It's handled," Lily said confidently with a little twist of distaste in her lips that said he didn't want to know the details. "Let's just say that I only stayed long enough to hear Scorpius admit he loves her and wants to date her before getting out of there as quickly as possible."
Quickly, Hugo changed the subject. He was a little terrified that Lily would be in a sadistic mood and decide he needed gory details after all. "I don't see how in the world Rose ended up so clueless."
Lily looked at Hugo like he was insane. "Have you met your father? Uncle Ron is one of the most emotionally stunted people ever."
He nodded, accepting the truth in her words. "Let's just hope they don't manage to screw it up."
His head bent forward with the force of the slap she delivered to the back of his head. "I went through a lot of trouble to get them together; they're not going to screw it up."
"You could always just make another bet with Scorpius to nudge them in the right direction."
Lily smirked, the expression reminiscent of her uncle George. "Best galleon I ever spent."