With the skill of a trained assassin, Scorpius had avoided his father before entering the Quidditch stands. He knew that the Master of Malfoy Manor was here. Just by the way his neck prickled, he also knew his father was searching like a hawk for the familiar gleam of white blonde hair in the masses of Gryffindors.
But he was much craftier, if not smarter than his father gave him credit for.
First of all, he had chosen a spot near to the towers where his father would sit; Draco Malfoy would never come close to the students for fear of intermingling with the lesser masses of the population. Scorpius rolled his eyes venomously as he thought this truth. And he would never look straight down over the edge of the stands to find his son.
Secondly, he and all of his friends had sat near Hagrid, something his father would never expect from him. Being a Gryffindor was one thing, but to associate with the “oaf” was another unforgivable dimension altogether.
And lastly, how could you find a bright blonde head of hair if that said head of hair was neatly covered by a scarlet and gold skiing cap that was an exact clone to numerous others around him?
Congratulating himself in the use of the Slytherin cunning he had from his father and the cleverness from his mother, he sat with his friends as they watched the vicious match. He was surprised that he hadn’t died or had been hospitalized when he saw his letter he had sent home, but Scorpius had only gotten a Howler. Oh, had that been interesting.
In the middle of writing the last sentence of his essay for Defense Against the Dark Arts, a persistent tapping had started near his ear. Looking out the window, he barely saw the outline of his favorite face in the world. If it hadn’t been for his bright maroon eyes, Scorpius wouldn’t have been able to distinguish Darksky from the ironically dark night sky behind him. But the happy reunion he was anticipating with his beloved pet was marred by the fact that a letter that matched the color of the owl’s eyes was tied to the leg of the midnight-black owl.
Immediately, he had let her in and had unceremoniously yanked the bedraggled bird from outside and up the stairs to his dormitory. As it was still quite early in the evening, no one was there to hear what came next, or so he thought.
“Scorpius Hyperion Malfoy!” bellowed the dulcet tones of his father’s voice when he was really ticked.
“How could you besmirch the name of Malfoy with such a name as Gryffindor? Have you no shame? Think of what this does to my reputation! I will now be known as the last Malfoy to be in the noble House of Slytherin, as my son went into the exact opposite! You’re just like that blood traitor! I hope that your sister will be the Regulus to your mistake!”
With that, the letter ripped itself apart and then the pieces turned to ash right before his eyes in the matter of ten seconds. He simply stared at the small flakes of charred paper before taking out his wand and saying, “Scourgify,” and watching them disappear to some unknown location.
“Who’s Regulus?” said a small voice.
Scorpius took his already brandished wand and pointed it threateningly at the intruder to his solitary humiliation. His grey eyes glinted with the anger held just beneath the surface as he met Azalea’s gaze.
“No one to be concerned with,” he said sharply, not lowering his wand.
She bristled. “It has to be someone to be greatly concerned with for your father to want your sister to be like him.” One of her midnight black eyebrows rose slightly.
“It is of no importance to you, Azalea,” he said, his voice losing none of its iciness, but he did lower his wand.
She walked a few steps forward so that she was a foot away from Scorpius. “If you say so, Scorpius; I trust you to tell me when you’re ready.”
At that last, she gave him a bright, toothy smile and floated as if she hadn’t a care in the world out the door. It had taken her all but an instant to turn from an alley cat with its fur rubbed the wrong way to a kitten with a ball of string.
She was going to take some getting used to.
The game was turning out splendidly, however. The Gryffindor and Slytherin teams seemed to be evenly matched. What the Gryffindors lacked in size and age, they made up for in terms of skill, and vice versa for the Slytherins. The teams cut through the air like knives, the Chasers working furiously on either end to gain the advantage.
The Slytherin Captain, a seventh year Seeker named Vincent Runcorn, called a timeout for his team and they descended from the sky to their respective sides, the stands still filled with the joyous and malevolent cheers and catcalls of each side.
“This is superb!” said Albus. His cheeks were tinged pink from excitement and cold as he watched his brother dismount his broom. “I can’t wait until we play next year!”
“It can’t come soon enough,” replied Rose, her eyes full of longing as she watched the players on the pitch.
When the teams took to the skies again, it was with renewed vigor, the crowds making collective cheers and sighs as the game went on. A few times, James dove from the sky as if to catch the Snitch and the whole pitch held it’s breath as the Slytherin Captain wasn’t far behind. But each time, James pulled out just in time to cause havoc among the Chasers, whose attention had been ripped away by the silence of the crowd.
Harry beamed with pride as he watched his elder son go through the plays that they had developed over hours of Quidditch practice at home with his other children, nieces and nephews. Ron punched the air whenever James swooped up from a spectacular dive and then slammed his hand down on Harry’s shoulder with a triumphant whoop.
“Do that again and you’ll dislocate my shoulder, Ron!” he said icily, his face betraying his joy at watching his son.
“Getting old, are we dear?” laughed Ginny.
Harry smiled at his wife, taking her hand before letting out a whoop with Ron as Gryffindor scored another goal.
“Showoff, just like his father,” muttered Draco.
“Shove it, Malfoy,” hissed Hermione, turning to glare at him. But he had already stood and was walking out of the stands before the game had even ended. Heavily, Hermione rolled her eyes at his retreating back and turned back to the game, wishing that he had grown up more in the last seventeen years.
“You’re the best Seeker we’ve had since your father!”
“Keep it up, Jay!”
The euphoria in the Gryffindor common room intoxicated everyone to a dangerous level. Older students had brought treats from the kitchens and were starting rowdy drinking songs as they passed out the butterbeer, pretending to stumble around, as if they were house elves smashed with the stuff. At the forefront of all this celebration was the Gryffindor House Team with James and Preston held aloft.
“I can almost taste the Quidditch Cup now,” said Preston, making a show of holding aloft a giant cup above his head as he stood on a coffee table. “With those pesky Slytherins out of the way, there’s no stopping us! WHO ARE WE?”
The entire house called back, “GRYFFINDOR!”
“Who’s going to win the Quidditch and the House Cup?” cheered another seventh year.
“Hear us roar!” screamed a fifth year girl in one corner, where she had just disentangled herself from one of the seventh year Chasers, Toby Klinger.
Every lung that was still in working condition from all the screaming that had been going on for the last twelve hours gave a mighty roar of victory.
“Here, here,” called James as he raised his mug of butterbeer from his perch on his teammate’s shoulders.
He asked to be put down as his housemates dispersed from beneath him and started to converse amongst themselves over the beat of a wizarding wireless radio in the corner. Making his way over to his family, he smiled and thanked everyone who congratulated him for making another spectacular dive, this time actually seeing the Snitch.
“Hey, Albus,” he said as he sat down heavily next to his brother, ruffling his already unruly hair. “Budge up, will you?”
Disgruntled, he scooted over just enough for Albus to sit on the large armchair next to him. His brother seemed too contented with himself to notice that his sworn enemy, Scorpius, was seated just to his left, where Albus had been talking with him.
“Good game today, James,” said Azalea, looking up from her sketchbook.
“Thanks, Azalea,” said James, taking a drink from his mug. “It’ll be great when you guys play next year,” he said, turning to his brother and book-immersed cousin.
“I can’t wait,” said Rose, flipping another page to Quidditch Through the Ages.
“Jeez, Lynnie,” whined James, yanking the book from Rose’s grip, “don’t you ever stop reading?”
Rose’s eyes spelled hatred. “Don’t you dare call me ‘Lynnie’,” she hissed.
“Why Lynnie?” asked Scorpius.
James noticed for the first time that he was seated so close to the Malfoy heir, and immediately sat up straight to answer him, a mean glint in his eyes. “Her name’s Rosalynn, dummy. Get it? Lynnie?”
“Alright, Jamesie,” answered Scorpius in the same tone James had used on him, as if he was some simpleton.
James flashed him an evil look before joining in on the frivolity of his housemates, getting congratulated all along the way.
“I swear his ego is going to inflate his head so large, he won’t fit through the portrait hole,” said a scowling Albus, trying in vain to fix his unruly black hair. “I can’t stand him anymore.”
“He is being quite the little prick, isn’t he?” muttered Rose. “I can’t wait until I can thump him in Quidditch back home. He needs to remember what it means to work hard for something.”
Albus gave up on his hair, flashing a wicked grin. “Potter versus Weasley. Perfect.”
Huzzah, my loyal readers! I apologize for the waits and short chapters, but more substantial ones will come soon. I hope I’ve kept your interest piqued and your imaginations running wild! Happy reading!