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A/N: For Maliiia's 'A Simple Challenge' at TGS


Butterfly Serenade


I cannot remember what it is like to feel like this. My head is spinning, my cheeks hurt from the smile that is glued to my face, youthful again. I can hardly believe it. On such a day as this, I have found my happy ending. On a day that should be full of solemnity, grief and heartbreak, I have found my escape. Who'd have thought it? Not I. 

He smiles at me, just as he used to when we were young. His hands are dug deep into his pockets and I run towards him. It feels like it has been years. His arms tense as he lets them hang at his sides. I get close, so close, and hold him tightly. It's distant, not quite enough. I draw back and can feel my blush heating my cheeks. I feel like I'm in a furnace and press the back of my hand to my forehead. He smiles again, as though this moment will last forever. 

"How have you been?" he asks, a solemnity to his voice that does not come across in anything but his eyes. I have never noticed how much emotion is stored in them. They shimmer in the moonlight that hangs above our heads like a guardian angel and he suddenly becomes an open book before my eyes. The mystery that shrouded him like a mist at one stage is gone. He is hiding nothing from me, I see that now. 

"Okay." It is a pathetic response but I do not know how else to phrase it. I have not shed a tear. I have not said a word about him since it happened. It would mean I would have to think of it, and that would be much too difficult. I shudder. "You?" 

"Unhappy," he admits without a second of hesitation. It is timed just right. It makes my heart swell in my chest and I take a swift and sharp intake of breath. The cold air pierces the back of my throat like a pin prick on my skin and I swallow deeply. "I've missed you." 

My eyes flutter shut. I could never have expected this. He had abandoned me and now he has come back with words that you use when you've been on holiday or on a business trip. You do not use them when you have broken someone's heart into thousands of shards then trampled all over them so they are nothing more than dust. 

"I know you don't want to hear that but you need to," he continues. I don't remember ever hearing this desperation before. I let my eyes open again. He seems to shine in the darkness. There is nothing else around. Only him. "Please, Molly. Please, listen to me." 

"I'm listening," I murmur with a shiver. The air is bitter. My arms are scarred with the marks of its bite, like poison. He steps towards me and I step away in turn. He goes to say something but I cut him off. "Why did you leave?" 

"I had to." 

It is feeble. It doesn't even make sense. I try to narrow my eyes at him but his broken gaze prevents it. 

"What would you do if this was the last time we were ever together?" 

The words flow from my mouth before I really register what I have said. He pauses with his mouth half open and I feel my eyes opening in horror at the thought that I have upset him. I make to move forwards when he speaks. His voice is no more than a whisper but to me, it feels like a serenade of a thousand butterflies. 

"The last time?" he repeats. I nod. He sighs and runs a hand back through his silver hair. His eyes fall down to me, full of an irrepressible sadness. "I would take your hand in mine." It slips back inside like a favourite skirt from years ago, a familiar friend. "And would never let go." A gentle squeeze tells me this is true and I hold on so tightly that I could faint from the energy going into it. A sob forms at the back of my mouth and I swallow it back. "I would hold you so close that you could be a part of me." I step into him and his other arm crashes around my body like waves around a sinking shipwreck, pinning it down. "I would kiss you until the sun comes up," I can feel his lips in my hair and I bite my lip to stop the scream of despair, "and when it did, I would take in every inch of you so I could never forget you." His hand trails down my back and I shiver against him. My tears against his shirt are the warmest thing in the night. 

His arms tighten around my waist and I curl into him. It feels better than it ever did before. He sways gently and I grip his shirt tightly in the fear that he will drift away in the angry breeze that blows at us. I bury my head in his chest. He smells the same. The scent of stained tobacco is forever ingrained on his skin, but it is faint in comparison to the vile aftershave he insists on sporting though even that I cannot be too angry about. I have missed it, just as I have missed the way he snores louder than a hippogriff with flu and the way he speaks with his mouth full. I let one hand go to creep into his and let my fingers dance across his chewed nails, taking it all in as though this is the last time I will ever touch him. 

"I love you," he murmurs into my hair. I nod against him. 

"I love you too," I reply, no hint of hesitation. 

As we sway to a silent melody, I find I have forgotten why he ever left. It is not important. He is here now. I glance up at him, an angel framed by the moonlight above us. It is dropping, its weight too heavy to hold for much longer. It is a ticking time bomb above us and I look away in the fear that it will go off and this will all be over. He follows my gaze and smiles. He is not scared and nor should I be. And so we stay there, wrapped in each other's arms as though tomorrow will never come. We watch the stars shine, and they watch us dance. 

-::-

From the top of the garden, a girl with pale brown hair and a boy with thick rimmed glasses watch down and they cry as they watch the redheaded girl swaying and twirling through the emptiness, alone. 




A/N: Okay so this has completed my trio of Molly stories. I've shipped her with Teddy, an OC and now good old Scorpius. What did you think? It leaves a lot to the imagination but I'd say look at the last word if you aren't sure about it and see what you can get. I'd love to hear your thoughts.

HUGE thank you to Jane for reading over this and just being completely lovely in general - ILY ♥

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