Lovely chapter image by Sarah_Bee107 @ TDA
The first thing I registered was that my head didn’t hurt nearly as much as it should have. Having passed out in the middle of the school grounds one would think my head would be throbbing but luckily for me it was only a dull pain in the back of my skull. It wasn’t exactly a pleasant feeling but not a horrible one either. Guess I was lucky.
The second thing I registered was voices. I could vaguely recognize one but I couldn’t actually pick out who it was. Knowing I should recognize it and being unable to was rather frustrating to be honest. More frustrating than I could actually handle well with a throbbing headache but there was really nothing I could do about that.
“She will be. Just give her a little space to breathe now. Don’t go crowding in on her or she won’t enough oxygen.”
“It isn’t like I’m suffocating her. I’m just standing here.”
Yes, definitely knew one of those voices.
Opening one eye slowly I waited a moment for it to adjust to the blinding light. Normally the light would have been fine but with my head feeling as horrible as it was and having just passed out it was blinding. “You know, I don’t know if anyone told you, but given your current situation it would be a good idea to take better care of yourself. Passing out can cause a lot of damage.” Now I knew why I recognized that voice.
“Your concern is staggering, Malfoy. Honestly, don’t strain yourself with worry.” I sat up slowly, pressing a hand to my forehead to stop my vision from swimming. Something felt like it was sloshing around inside of my skull. Not a very comforting feeling.
“You gave us quite a fright, Miss Weasley.” Madame Pomfrey had been aging while my parents were attending Hogwarts but she was still working there as the nurse. She gazed at me from behind her dark eyes with what could be most easily described as compassion. “How are you feeling?”
“My head hurts a bit.”
“That’s to be expected. Would have hurt a great deal more had it not been for Mr. Malfoy, I’m sure.”
“Him?” I turned my head slightly to gaze at the boy in question. Scorpius was leaning against the hospital bed next to mine, his long legs stretched out in front of him, crossed at the ankles. He looked extremely relaxed and passive.
At my questioning glance he shrugged, a practiced and elegant gesture. He seemed so careless it was almost startling. “Lucky for you, Weasley, I was close enough to cast a quick spell. It stopped you from hitting your head too hard.”
“Why would you do that?”
“Contrary to what you may believe my idea of a good time isn’t watching someone fall over and crack their skull open. Far too messy.”
Madame Pomfrey made a clicking sound with her tongue as though she didn’t enjoy us bickering in her domain. “If you can keep an eye on her for a moment Mr. Malfoy I’ll fetch her the potion I prepared.”
“I don’t have to be anywhere,” was his monotone reaction. She must have taken that as an agreement to watch over me because she turned on heel and headed towards the back of the hospital wing. “You must be aware by now that she will know of your…situation. Which also means that it will only be a matter of time before your family does.”
“Don’t be absurd, Malfoy.”
“I’m being logical,” he argued. “It isn’t every day that Hogwarts has a pregnant student as I’m sure you must be aware. Both the school and your family have to be aware of such things for them to be able to make sure you stay in good health. Any person with half of a brain would be able to figure that one out, Weasley.”
I pursed my lips together. This wasn’t what I was planning to have happen. Of course I hadn’t planned to become a mother anytime soon either. It was only two weeks until Christmas holiday and I had been counting on telling both my family and the proper people at Hogwarts of my condition. Now it seemed as though I was going to have to tell them ages before I was prepared to handle it. It was rather disinheriting. “Bloody hell.”
“That’s one way to put it.” He uncrossed and re-crossed his legs, switching which ankle was placed over the other. “Apparently carrying a magical child can be very strenuous on a body. You need to take special potions in order to keep yourself and the child. Madame Pomfrey prepared a potion for you to take. She thinks you passed out because you weren’t taking anything.”
“You know, I think that knock on the head took away all of your eloquence, Weasley.”
“And since when are you so eloquent?”
“I’m not trying to be eloquent actually. I’m merely informing you of what you missed while you were sleeping.”
“I’d hardly call that sleeping.”
“Rather close to it then. Either way there wasn’t even the remote possibility that you would have heard what was said about your situation given your state. As such I was filling you in.”
“Can you stop calling it a state?”
“It isn’t a state,” I grumbled, folding my arms over my chest, just under my breasts. It had become a habit when I was annoyed. As a matter-of-fact I had been doing it for so long I can’t even remember when I started it. “That sounds so horrible.”
“What would you rather I call it?” He arched one of his pale eyebrows so it was heading towards his hairline.
“You can call it exactly what it is given there is no one else here: a pregnancy.”
“Whatever you say, Weasley. But while you’re gestating that thing-”
“It isn’t a thing. It happens to be a baby.”
“Thank you for being so kind as to inform me what they’re called, Weasely. I wouldn’t have been able to figure that one out on my own.”
“You’re such a horrid prat.”
“Then why are you going through with having a child I am apparently the father of?”
“Because your being a prat isn’t a good reason to get rid of my baby.”
“I see.” But he didn’t and I knew it. I hadn’t really expected him to understand at all. I doubt he honestly cared about the child growing inside of me. Maybe he felt like since he was the father- technically- he had to at least fane interest in the situation or something to that effect. Of course the simple way to find out what he was thinking would have been to ask him but that was out of the question. I wasn’t sure I wanted to hear the answer actually. And if I didn’t I was pretty sure I would hex him into oblivion which wouldn’t have gone over too well with Madame Pomfrey, or the rest of the staff at Hogwarts. “Quite done complaining, Weasley?”
“I’m not complaining.” He was beginning to be infuriating. “I just think you’re acting like a spoiled little prat and I don’t appreciate you intentionally instigating me. Getting upset while pregnant isn’t conducive to good health. Or so I’ve read.”
“Somehow I’m not even slightly surprised you read up on this already.”
“It doesn’t hurt to be prepared, Malfoy. Not that you would understand that phenomena. But yes, I’ve read up on it a bit. I just haven’t had much time to read everything there is to know.” And I didn’t want to admit that I hadn’t read much up on carrying a wizarding child, only a regular child. Though I should have anticipated that there would be a different between the two. After all, carrying a child that’ll most likely be magical should be different, unless they’re muggle born. Or so I would assume. Oh Merlin, who am I kidding? I’m not even sure what I was thinking anymore.
“Oh, I know what it means to be prepared.” I didn’t like the smirk he had on his face. I was almost one hundred percent sure that he was referring to something perverse. And not just because he was Scorpius Malfoy but because he was a teenage boy. Even my brother and cousins had a tendency to make sexual references at almost the drop of a hat. It had to have something to do with all that testosterone that made them able to think of sex that often. And pretty much make almost anything you say sound sexual or disturbing. Suddenly I hoped very much that this baby was a girl and not a boy. I wouldn’t love it any less were it a boy but I wasn’t sure I could handle another person making sex references daily.
“You’re disgusting, Malfoy.”
“Says the girl carrying my child.”
“I may be carrying your child, Malfoy, but I didn’t lower myself to the level of shagging you. To put it quite simply: you’re not good enough for me. Not by a long shot.”
“Is that right?”
“Yes, it is.” I sounded so sure of myself but I really wasn’t. I had already been able to admit it to myself that I found Malfoy attractive. Very attractive. I wasn’t exactly interested in shagging him of course but he was still attractive. Mostly in an infuriating way. He was the kind of attractive that makes you want to watch him but also want to smash your head against the wall in frustration. How was I going to handle carrying this man’s child? And what would I do if this child inside of me turned out just like their father? Oh Merlin, help me. Please, please help me.
“Who knew you had such a conceited view of yourself?”
“I’m not being conceded,” I argued. He was really starting to give me a splitting headache.
“If you say so.” He waved a hand at me, effectively signaling he was bored now with this conversation. How lovely it must feel to think you can dismiss people so easily. Must come from that whole pureblood thing. And I was about to point out that he couldn’t just shut me up like one of his little fans with a wave of his hand when he continued talking. “So, how are you going to handle telling your family about the baby?”
He said the word like it was something disgusting. This just kept getting better. “I don’t understand how that’s any of your business.”
“Well, considering this is my child I think it is most definitely my business.”
“I don’t know how I’m going to handle this.”
“Then you should think about it rather quickly before Madame Pomfrey makes the decision for you.”
That was the last thing I wanted. If anyone was going to tell my family it had to be me. But I wasn’t sure how to go about telling them their grandchild has been fathered by the son of their worst enemy. I can imagine it wouldn’t be a very pleasant conversation. Not a pleasant conversation at all. But it was one that had to happen, no matter what. “I understand that.” I pinched the bridge of my nose, tired and stressed and just wanting to stop the world for a moment and make sure that I had plenty of time to work things out in my head.
“Do you? Well then, do tell: how are you going to handle this?”
“Must you be so bloody difficult?”
“I’m not trying to be difficult, Weasley. I’m trying to make you see that you have two options: convince Madame Pomfrey that you’re going to tell your family of the news yourself or she’ll do it for you. There’s absolutely no way out of this.”
“I know!” I surprised even myself by how much it sounded like a hiss when it came out. I wasn’t up to handling Malfoy’s attitude today. Not at all. But apparently I was stuck dealing with it until Madame Pomfrey came back, which hopefully would be soon.
“Then if you know you should hurry up and figure out what you’re going to do. I know you don’t want to and hell, I’m not looking for the inevitable event of telling my parents either but you’re running out of options, Weasley.” He let out a laugh that held absolutely no amusement. “Scratch that: you’re completely out of options by now.”
“I know, I know.” I pinched the bridge of my nose harder. “Alright. Christmas holiday is coming quickly. I’ll tell my parents during that.”
“I don’t think they’ll handle the news all that well.”
“I don’t doubt that. But I’d rather them hear it from me than from someone else, like Madame Pomfrey. I can tell them to it my way, break it to them easy.”
“Are you going to tell them about my part in all of this?”
“I hope I don’t have to yet.” It may not have been the nicest thing to say but there’s nothing like being honest. I was hoping that my parents would already think they were having enough to handle with the knowledge they were about to become grandparents that they wouldn’t ask about the baby’s father.
“Somehow I don’t think that’ll happen,” he said blandly. I hated how he could hide whatever was going on inside of his head, how he could speak like he had no emotions whatsoever. “They’ll most likely ask.”
“And if they ask I’ll be honest…and then watch my father’s head explode.”
In a normal situation the idea of my father’s head exploding with rage or annoyance would have been one of the most amusing things I could possibly picture in my head. But given the situation it would mean I was a disappointment to him and I wasn’t sure I’d be able to handle that.
“That’s something I’d pay to be able to see.”
“You’re not amusing, Malfoy.”
“I’m not trying to be. I’d find it rather amusing to see your father’s face get as red as his hair.”
“Just…shut up.” I was tired. Tired of worrying and talking to Malfoy. I was tired of everything. “I need quiet to figure out how to tell them. So when Madame Pomfrey comes back just…just go. Okay?”
“With pleasure.” Bloody prat. At that moment I swore he’d be the death of me. No question about it.
As if I had summoned her with the power of my mind Madame Pomfrey appeared then, walking towards me with a steaming glass. I didn’t have to see the actual contents or smell it to know I wasn’t going to like the taste of it. Just the fact that it was hot enough to cause that much steam was enough for me.
“Here you go, Miss Weasley. Bottoms up.” She handed me that glass and I took it like I was about to drink poison. I knew, without a shadow of a doubt, that this was going to be almost as unpleasant as it was when I had thrown up that morning. But I really didn’t have a choice in the matter. So I took the glass from her as she spoke up again. “Thank you for watching Miss Weasley, Mr. Malfoy.”
“I’ll be leaving now.” He pushed himself away from the hospital bed, stretching his legs out in front of him for a moment before righting himself. He did it so elegantly it almost seemed like he was a robot.
“Yes, yes. Go ahead.”
He met my eyes from over the glass I had brought up to my lips. There was a certain amusement dancing in the gray depths of his eyes. I wasn’t sure if he was amused I would have to drink this concoction or at the idea of my telling my family I was carrying his child. Either way I didn’t like it.
Then he turned and left the room, moving in long and even strides.
“Well, go on. Drink up.”
I took the potion- which didn’t smell or look as bad as I thought it would- and tilted the cup, pouring the potion into my mouth slowly, swallowing as quickly as I could so I wouldn’t have to taste it. Now I just had to convince her to let me be the one to tell my family about the baby.
Easier said than done.
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