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A/N: continues right from where the last chapter left off, but from Scorpius' POV :)

Colours



1) It shouldn’t have happened like this. Hell, it shouldn’t have happened at all. Why did I let him do it? I knew it would kill him. But I let him do it anyway, because it’s what he wanted and I wanted and what I want always happens. ALWAYS.

Like when I was five, and I wanted a pony, but my father had said it was too expensive, and my mother had said it was too expensive, and my grandfather had smiled through his glass, hidden in the corner. I got the pony within a week. My grandfather’s smile had gone, and mine had replaced it. I think that’s why I go to any lengths to get what I want. To spite him.

Only once did I not go after what I wanted. Once, not after the thing I wanted more than I had wanted more than anything else in the whole wide world. I hadn’t believed it possible to want, need, something that much, yet I did.

And now. His hair as he arches up, thick, and matted with sweat and tears and blood. His eyes, filled to the brim with ME. His teeth as they grit together to stop himself from crying out. Redbittenlips. Pinkflushedcheeks. Shinyclenchedmuscles. Whitetwistedknuckles. Orangestrangledmoans. Hit the air with bruising force and my fingertips dig deeper in surprise and pleasure.

They’re mine, those gasps and groans and whimpers that escape his mouth. MINE. Just like his heart, partly blackened and shrivelled, now, of course. Not even I can replace that.

2) “Albus...?” A small, scrunched up figure sitting on the curb. At my voice, he leaps up, pummelling the palms of his hands into his eyes roughly, rubbing.

“Yeah?” He tugs at his hair distractedly. I say nothing, watching him. “Was there something you wanted?”

“No, I mean, it doesn’t matter.” I turn away. Grey tarmac, spotted with white ground-in chewing gum. I walk away slowly, waiting – desperately – for him to call me back.

“Okay.”

A deep, sort of blue noise as my heart plummets beyond return.

3) And now, what do I do? Let go – GO! – of the thing that I love the most, the thing that I need the most, the thing that I couldn’t bring myself to live without. He’ll be happy with his family. I’ll be dead inside. Quite possibly on the outside too, by that point.

Or be selfish, and clutch him to me and nevereverletgo.

I like the second option best. But, then again, it’s not really about what I like now, is it?

His eyes speak of childhood and laughter and thousands of crystal towers and pinkness and running through long grass. Mine are empty voids. Dull and grey and impossible to read. Like frosted glass. But Albus shattered it, to be metaphoric, which I usually loath being with a passion equal to the hate Albus bears my grandfather.

Because Albus hates something that deserves to be hated. I am silly and stupid and inadequate and hate things like excessive use of metaphors.

But, all the same, Albus had smashed whatever had been shielding my emotions from the rest of the world. I’d always been acutely aware of what I was feeling. It had always pressed down on me uncomfortably; impossible to escape. But now... Everyone I meet can see just what I feel, splashed generously across my face in a rainbow palette. It hasn’t made much difference to Albus, of course. He always knew what I felt, no matter what.

If anyone, it’s him hiding his feelings from me. He used to be so open – you could read him like a book.

4) “Albus, how about we go out tonight, eh?”

He looks up at me blankly. “You want to go out? You hate going out.” It’s true, of course; I despise leaving the house normally, but this is an exception.

“You don’t.” I smile, taking his hand and lacing my fingers through his. His smile nearly splits his face in two.

“Okay.” He says happily. “Just let me get my coat.”

When he returns, I pull him against me, tight, and look into his beaming face, greengreen eyes looking so pleased and content and loving and GREEN. But underneath, very carefully disguised, was that edge of sadness. My grip tightens on his hand and I kiss him. My lips are still pressed to his, not letting him go any deeper, as I disparate. The second we arrive, I step back, letting go of him instantly. His gaze doesn’t leave me, confusion pooling in those eyes.

“Bye.” I whisper. He blinks and looks around sharply.

Comprehension dawns on his face, closely followed by horror. “No! Scorpius, no!”

A young female voice crying out, “Al! Mum, Al’s back!” He’s distracted for that one, vital second, and I’m gone, scrunching my eyes shut tight so I don’t have to watch him.

5) I don’t go back to the flat we shared, because I’m not that stupid. There’s nothing there I want, anyway. I go instead the only friend I was able to retain from Hogwarts, the only one that didn’t go when I pushed them all away in favour of Albus. We weren’t best friends, of course, that was Albus’ place. But she understood me better than the others had.

But that doesn’t stop the butterflies in my stomach as I ring the doorbell of the stylish townhouse, on Crescent Row in Bath, no less. When the door’s flung open, and a mountain of golden blonde hair tumbles out, I’m surprised by the sudden wave of happiness that floods me at the sight of her. I hadn’t realised how I’d missed her.

“Well, well, Scorpius Malfoy.” She says, propping one elbow on her hip as she drags her hair out of her face with her other hand. “I don’t mean to sound rude, though of course you know I actually do, but what are you doing here?”

“I didn’t know where else to go...”

“And where’s your little toyboy?” She asks, peering round me.

“Um...” To my horror, I feel tears welling up. She notices at once, of course, and sighs.

“Oh, come in then. You need a drink, and I’ve a feeling I will too soon enough.”

6) Her house is very white. Everything in that pure, glistening shade. Pristine. In the sitting room there’s one scarlet sofa that she sits on, doing her nails in silver enamel.

“Albus misses you. Desperately. It really was terribly selfish of you to leave him, Scorpius.”

“I did it for him.” I grit out, glaring at her.

She shrugs. “Everyone’s talking about it. Your parents are horribly worried about their baby boy out on his own in the big bad world.”

Ailene.” I say forcibly, warning her not to push me.

Her knowing blue eyes – periwinkle today – laugh at me through black-coated lashes. “Scorpius.” She mocks. “Say my name.” She says suddenly. “My full name. My disgusting mudblood name.” I stare at her. I’ve heard her call herself that before, of course, she was in Slytherin and to escape being bullied by others, she learned very early on to appear to hate herself for being muggleborn. “Say it.”

“Ailene Merryweather.”

Abruptly, her face splits into a huge grin, and she starts humming under her breath and goes back to her nails. “So, what are you going to do?”

I’m still watching her. I’d been so wrapped up in my own problems and self-pity, I hadn’t taken a second to notice her state. She’d always been controlled, collected, and now... I’d seen something in her eyes which I had never witnessed in them before, and never thought I would; desperation.

7) Albus finds me a week later. He knocks on the door, and Ailene strides in, saying there’s a visitor for me, then disappears back out the door. Albus steps in a moment later.

“Oh, Scorpius...” He says softly.

That’s all it takes to have me up and against him, neon yellow starts exploding beneath my eyelids. We lie on the scarlet sofa, curled together in knots impossible to untie. I stroke his hair. He runs his fingertips up and down and up and down my side.

“She’s changed since school.”

“Who, Ailene?”

He nods over my heart. “Less together. She hardly seems to know what she’s doing.”

I’m silent as beige. Beige is silent. And inconspicuous. Dove grey is quieter still, though. I shut out thoughts of Ailene. Turn to the boy pressed closer than air. Shut out thoughts of the drowned. Turn to HIM.

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