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amazing chapter image by prospero at tda! thank you.

Chapter 4: Heart vs. Brain

One week.

To Rose it felt like a lifetime.

Her nerves had been on edge for the whole week. She couldn’t relax, she felt tense and completely unnerved especially in his presence. She barely talked; she stayed silent and let her friends to the talking for her. She didn’t eat much and spent most of lunch and dinner playing around with her food. Dom and Albus acted as if they didn’t notice, but she knew them better than that. She knew they suspected, they knew something was up with her but they weren’t asking her any questions.

Well most of the time.

Dom did try and find out what was happening. She would look at her with suspicious stares and ask her famous “Are you dying or lying?” question, which normally meant she knew that something was being hidden. Rose had passed it off as Head Girl duties causing her stress.

And the worst part was that they believed every single word.

But that wasn’t all. The hardest parts for Rose were when they her and Scorpius were alone in the dorm. It felt like she was re-living déjà vu over and over again, every single second she was alone with him. He pretended as if she didn’t exist but she would catch him from time staring at her from the corner of his eye, glaring daggers towards her. As much as Rose wanted to scream at him, to yell at the top of her lungs and let all the anger out, she knew that if she let her guard down it would only lead onto something that she would regret more than last time. He was annoying her by just breathing, by just sitting down in the same room as her. There was nothing she could do about it. Time was her only hope now. She knew that time would eventually turn this mess into a far away nightmare that she might even be able to laugh about someday.

And the inner battle between her heart and her brain wasn’t helping either. Rose tried to make herself believe that her heart was being irrational; that it was following her misjudged instinct and that it would only lead to pain and heartbreak. She was listening to her brain, the only sane part of her body that was constantly telling just how off limits Scorpius Malfoy was and how much she would end up regretting ever getting involved with someone like him.

But most of all, she hated the lying and deceiving she had had to resort to, to keep this secret from Dom and Albus. And they bought her lies so easily. They trusted her because she was family. And family doesn’t lie to each other, not like she was doing anyway. She hated it. She hated it so much. She hated it almost as much as she hated Scorpius himself. Dom and Albus were her best friends. There was no one in the world she would trust as much as them and yet here she was lying to them spitefully, to save her meaningless reputation in the school. Did it even matter that much? Why did she care about an already ruined reputation when she was risking losing far more important things, such as her own family?

Rose was seated on the window ledge, staring mindlessly out of the window, looking at the moon and how it reflected over the Black Lake. She sighed deeply, too lost in her thoughts to even begin to consider going to sleep. Too much was going on in her head, it was making her feel more confused than ever. There was no way she could get any sleep, not with so much happening.

“Curse you Scorpius Malfoy,” she muttered under her breath.

Just as she was about to get herself into bed, Dom’s cat, Toodles, jumped onto her lap, brushing his head against the palm of her head and purring loudly. She smiled. Dom always ‘accidentally’ left Toodles in Rose’s dorm. It was mainly because Toodles was a night cat and it loved to scratch and bite Dom at night to try and get her up to play.

“What’s up Toodles?” Rose asked the cat, who continued to purr.

Toodles looked up to her with a soft expression and Rose couldn’t help but cuddling the little black and white cat, smiling despite her depressed state.

“I’ve done something bad,” she admitted to him. “I’ve done something really bad. Even your Dom wouldn’t approve.” Toodles gave her an inquisitive look. Funny how, out of everyone, she found it easier to talk to a cat. “It’s him, Toodles. Malfoy.” Toodles hissed. “I’ve done something real bad this time, real bad. Dad would be so disappointed in me. The whole family would be disappointed in me. It’s so bad, so unforgivable. I don’t even know how it happened…”

Rose breathed in deeply and leaned her head against the wall behind her, fighting the tears that were threatening to spill from her eyes. She stopped patting the cat and run her hands through her dark red hair, pushing it over onto one shoulder. Toodles nudged her, wanting more cuddles, so she continued talking to him pretending he nudged her to tell her to continue her story.

“I slept with him,” Rose said, her voice bitter. “And I know it was the biggest mistake of my life. I know it was the most stupid thing I have ever done, but…” She sighed. Was she admitting this to the cat, or to herself? “But I’m not so sure anymore. I can’t stop thinking about him, about that night. It’s all I dream about, all I think about day in and day out. I can barely eat, talk, I can’t even sleep!”  She smirked a little. “And by that I mean actual sleeping not that type of sleeping.”

Toodles jumped off her lap and onto the windowsill, rolling around on his back and wanting Rose to play with him. Rose ruffled up the long white fluffy fur on his stomach as he squirmed and continued to purr.

“You’re a funny cat,” she commented.

The black and white cat purred more and then rolled onto his stomach. He looked at Rose and meowed at her as if telling he understood her problems. He nudged her again and she patted his head again, playing his little black ears. Toodles moved his head and licked her hand in gratitude, thanking her for playing and cuddling him. His tongue was rough against Rose’s skin and she giggled a little as it felt a bit ticklish. She picked him up in her arms and placed her face against his little squished one.

“What do you think I should do?” she asked him. Toodles titled his head to one side and licked her nose. She laughed a little and placed him back down on the windowsill. “I hope that didn’t mean kiss him!”

Toodles purred again.

“Why can’t life be simple for once?” she asked, staring out of the window. “Why does my life have to be so messed up all the time?”

She sighed and looked up at the moon outside. It was the middle of January and Rose wished for this year to just be over. She thought she would enjoy being Head Girl, but Scorpius had ruined everything for her. Having to share a dorm was even worse, not to mention having to share a bathroom. Rose didn’t understand why he couldn’t just learn to put the toilet seat down! It wasn’t that hard to do, he just had to push it down, just a little tap. Why was that such a hard task for him?

“Why does everything have to be so damn complicated?” she asked again.

Rose sighed one more time and then stood up, deciding it was probably better to go to sleep and try and forget about everything instead of staying up all night again. Tomorrow was Friday and she had tough lessons all day so she couldn’t afford to feel tired. She walked over to her wardrobe and took out her nightdress. She turned on the light in the room, making the crystal chandelier shine in all its might. Quickly undoing her shirt and taking off her skirt due to the cold temperature, she slipped on her little black cotton nightdress.

She walked out of her room, leaving Toodles to play with one of his many toys that Dom ‘accidentally’ left in wardrobe. It was funny to see how easily amused he was. A small ball and that cat was as happy as anything. She tiptoed into the bathroom, knowing well that Scorpius was probably asleep and that if she made any noise he would step out and try to start a fight over nothing. The last thing she wanted was to talk to him. And considering where their recent fight had led to, she wanted to avoid that as much as possible. She wished she could go back in time and erase everything that happened. It would make life so much easier. This week had been like hell, literally. She was scared of someone finding out what she had done, so scared to the point where it was stopping her from truly being herself.

And she hated it.

What wasn’t helping either, were all those bubbling feelings that she was trying hard to suppress. Why is it that her heart wanted to flutter every time he walked into the room and her stomach wanted to burst with thousands of butterflies? Why was it that she found it so hard to forget that night? Why did she feel like she wanted more? Rose tried to make herself believe she wasn’t falling for him but it was getting harder and harder by the day. It wasn’t like anything could ever happen between them anyway. Not only was he a Slytherin, but also he was a Malfoy and that made him even more off limits. Falling for her parent’s old school enemy’s son, that was definitely something rebellious.

Rose knew she was falling for him, falling for Scorpius Malfoy, a boy she knew she hated up until a week ago.

How could one night change everything?

Closing the bathroom door behind her, she tried not to get angry as she saw the toilet seat up, again. She walked towards the mirror brushed her teeth and then took out a comb from her cabinet. The bathroom was big, since it had to accommodate two people and they both had a lot of storage space where they could put their stuff compared to what they had when they slept in their house dormitories. Rose brushed her hair slowly, not feeling tired in the slightest and trying to delay going to sleep as much as possible. She already knew what she was going to dream about and she was scared. She was scared to feel the anticipation and butterflies building up in her stomach as she recalled the events of a week ago in her dreams over and over again. She was scared to see the small blush creep on her cheeks every time she thought about it. She was scared to hear her heart beat faster every time she got into bed.

Why was she feeling like this?

Tears were forming in her eyes again, threatening to spill. She could feel the sobs trying to escape from her mouth but she didn’t want to cry. She was stronger than this; she couldn’t let it have such an effect on her. She didn’t want to spill a single tear over him. She tried to convince herself as much as possible that he wasn’t worth it. He wasn’t worth anything to her.

Rose was so caught up in her thoughts that she ended up dropping her brush to the floor and in the process of picking it up, she knocked over a few perfume bottles and aftershaves as well. They all feel with a resounding thud and the Gryffindor knew she had done it now. It would be a matter of minutes before Scopius would open his bedroom door and shout at her. He was a light sleeper and he hated being woken up by her in the middle of the night like she often did.

And she was right.

In less then a minute, Scorpius was standing by the bathroom door, his arms crossed and his jaw set tight.

“Some people are trying to sleep you know?” he snapped her, his tone of voice harsh and cold.

“Sorry,” she said as she tried in vain to hold back her sobs. She sniffed and wiped away that one tear that had escaped down her cheek. She cursed herself under her breath, and bent over to pick up the various fallen objects and placing them back on the counter next to the sink.

Scorpius was taken aback by her defeated attitude. Was she crying? His arms fell down to his side and he started to feel guilty for having snapped at her so quickly. He stared at her reflection in the mirror just to see her eyes were glistening with tears and her lips were quivering with sobs. Another tear ran down her cheek and she quickly wiped it away with her hand, frowning at herself in anger.

As she brushed past him and tried to walk out, he grabbed her arm and stopped her, feeling the need to see whether she was ok or not.

“Are you ok?” Scorpius asked her.

“I’m fine,” Rose spat back quickly between her sobs.

She tried to get away but his grip on her arm was too tight. She couldn’t keep it in anymore. She covered her face with her hands and started crying, all the unshed tears dying to come out. Rose hated that he could see her like this, so weak and fragile. She didn’t want his pity and yet here she was, crying her eyes out to him. Scorpius did the only thing he thought was right. He wrapped his arms around her and let her cry in his chest. He didn’t know why she was crying, but he was sure he had a pretty good idea of what it was.

Rose didn’t want to cry. Most importantly she didn’t want to cry in front of him. But she couldn’t control the tears anymore. She felt so powerless that her knees buckled and she lost her balance. Scorpius grabbed her just in time and with ease, carried her to her room. He sat down on her bed, with Rose on his lap as she continued to cry on his shoulder, her little hands gripping tightly onto his grey pyjama vest top. He didn’t say anything to her; he just held her tight and let her cry. There was no point trying to reassure her, she needed to let it all out or she would end up feeling this way again sometime soon. She couldn’t bottle everything up forever; she needed to show her feelings once in a while. It would start eating her inside if she didn’t, slowly making her life a living hell.

Scorpius didn’t really know what he was doing. He just knew he has to hold her tight until she stopped crying. It’s what he’d see his Dad do every time his Mum was upset. He would sit her on his lap and hold her tight until her tears stopped falling. It didn’t matter whether Astoria was crying because of something Draco did or not. His Dad would hug his Mum for as long as was necessary. So Scorpius was doing the same thing. Even if she was a Weasley and his archenemy in the school, even after everything that had happened between them in the last week, the young Malfoy just wanted to hold Rose until she stopped crying.

An hour passed before Rose managed to calm down. Her sobs slowed down and her breathing became regular again. She sat up and moved onto the edge of her bed, feeling slightly awkward about sitting on his lap. He scooted next to her and they both sat there together, looking out of the window, each one of them lost in their thoughts.

“Are you ok now?” he asked her, breaking the silence.

She shrugged, looking down at her hands and away from his face. “Not really,” she admitted. “But I’ll get over it.”

Rose turned to look at him, just to find the Scorpius Malfoy looking sorry, guilty even. It was then that Rose realised that he wasn’t there because he felt pity on her, he was there because he felt guilty of doing this to her. He was blaming himself for her tears even though Rose knew that she was as much to blame for this as he was.

“Do you want to talk about it?” he asked.

“There’s nothing to talk about Scorpius,” she told him. “It happened, there’s nothing we can do to change that. We just have to deal with it and move on with our lives.”

He stared at her with a frown on his face. Was she seriously going to go back and deny her feelings even after she cried like that in front of him?

“It didn’t mean anything, anyway.”

Scorpius couldn’t believe his ears.

He exhaled loudly, standing up. “When will you stop lying to yourself?” he exploded, waving his hands around. “It’s so frustrating watching you lie to yourself over and over again.”

She stood up too, slightly shocked by his sudden outburst. “I’m not lying!”

“Yes, you are!” he told her, grabbing her shoulders with his hands. He shook her lightly. “You just cried for a whole hour because of what happened. You were in hysterics, Rose, in hysterics. How can you expect me to believe it meant nothing to you when I just saw you break down like that?”

“Because I can’t let it mean anything to me!” she admitted, her eyes wide. “Even if I wanted to, even if I really wanted to… if anyone ever found out… I… I… I don’t…” Rose couldn’t find the words to express herself anymore. She shook her head, running one of her hands through her hair in frustration.

“Why can’t you just let me forget about it?” she asked him, her big brown eyes almost pleading with him.

“I don’t want you to forget, Rose!” he shouted, looking straight at her. “Why would I want to forget? Tell me, why would I want to forget everything that happened that night? I don’t regret it, I don’t regret it a single bit. But you make yourself believe that you do, even though you told me you wouldn’t.”

“It could ruin everything, Scorpius!” she yelled back. “Don’t you understand? It could ruin both of us. We’d lose our family, our friends, because they would never, ever accept us. A Slytherin and a Gryffindor. We’d antagonize everyone. Why on Earth would you want that to happen?”

“That doesn’t even matter,” he replied loudly. “Once we get out of here all this stupid rivalry means shit in the real world. I don’t know why you can’t understand that!” He looked at her intensely, trying to make her see sense. “Do you really think people in the real world are going to care whether you were a Gryffindor or a Slytherin? Think about it Rose, do you really think it matters?”

“What about our family? Our friends?” Rose asked, her voice sounding hysterical. “Do you think they would ever let us be happy? Think about it Scorpius, we don’t stand a chance. Everyone would be against us.”

“If they truly cared about us they wouldn’t do that,” Scorpius told her. “Think about it. Think about what I’m saying. None of that prejudiced crap even matters! And I know you know this.”

“It does matter,” Rose replied. “We’re still in the school. We’re still surrounded by all the prejudice no matter what we think.”

“I’m not going to lie to you like you’re so intent on doing to yourself,” he said, his voice suddenly quiet. “I don’t regret it Rose, at all.” He brushed her long red hair out of her face, caressing her cheek. “And I know you feel the same. If you’re truly not bothered by what happened as you say you are you wouldn’t have cried like you just did.”

Tears started to form at the corner of her eyes again. She wanted to give in, she wanted to give in so bad but she felt so scared. She was scared of losing her family, of losing Dom and Albus. She couldn’t imagine going through a single day without them.

But, what if she had Scorpius there instead?

As much as she tried to convince herself to regret every single second of that night, she knew that deep down she didn’t. Maybe if there wasn’t so much prejudice in the school and if what her uncle Harry wanted to achieve had actually been achieved, then maybe they would have had a shot. But no one wanted to see them together, no one. Everyone still expected them to kill each other by the end of the year. People were beginning to think the two leaders of the rival houses had gone soft on each other. What would they say if they found out they were sleeping together? Not to mention, what would her family do?

And yet, knowing all of that, she couldn’t bring herself to regret it.

“So what if I don’t regret it?” Rose asked him. It didn’t matter what she felt for him. She had to ignore those feelings as much as possible. “It doesn’t change anything. It doesn’t change anything between us.”

He shook his head. “It changes everything Rose.” His fingers traced her lips. “It changes so much, you don’t even understand.”

“Nothing can ever happen between us,” she said, trying to convince herself more than him. It wasn’t happening. She knew her words were an obvious lie. “You know we should just forget it ever happened, but…”

“But?” he asked, hopeful.

She swallowed, not believing what she was about to say. “But what if we can’t?”

Lightening and thunder struck outside, a resounding boom echoing across the school grounds. A storm was gathering outside. In the one hour that she’d been crying, the beautiful moon that Rose had been staring at was now covered with thick grey threatening clouds. Being in one of the tallest towers in the school, the lights in Rose’s room started to flicker making everything go dark for a few seconds as the storm gained strength.

“I’ve tried the whole bloody week to forget about you,” Scorpius told her. “It’s not happening. I can’t forget.”

Her breath caught in her throat at the sound of those words. Memories of that fateful night clouded her mind. She remembered the feel of his touch and the burning sensation that his lips left on her skin.

“Don’t you think I feel exactly the same?” Rose asked him, her trembling hands on either side of his face. Another loud bolt of lightening flashed outside and the light flickered once more as the echoing rumbling of the thunder engulfed the grounds.

“But I can’t feel like that,” she whispered her lips quivering. “My Dad, my whole family… he would never allow this, us.”

“Neither would my family,” he replied. “Don’t forget, it’s because of what my family and their friends did that everyone feels the need to be prejudiced. Your family has every right to feel like they do about me and every other Slytherin.”

“But I know you’re not like the other Malfoys,” Rose said quietly. “I know that now.”

“And you’re not like the other Weasleys either,” he told her. “I can tell by how you treat Lily. Dominique, Albus, James, Lucy, they all hate her. But you don’t. You don’t hate her.”

“She’s still my family,” she said. “Nothing will change that for me. Lily’s my cousin.”

“Why can’t you do the same for me?” he asked her. “If you make an exception for her, why can’t you do it for me too?”

Rose opened her mouth to reply, but her lips felt dry and no words came out. She didn’t know what to say to him. Her heart was screaming at her to give in and for the first time in a week, it was screaming louder than her brain. Her brain’s attempt to convince her was feeble, insignificant even.

Who was she going to listen to?

Her heart or her brain?

Was she going to give in or not?

The lights in the room flickered again. Rose could see Scorpius’ lips slowly inching closer to hers. For a single second she forgot how to breathe. With every flick of the light his face was getting closer and closer. The sound of the pounding rain outside was silenced by the loud tremors in the sky and the bright streaks of lightening. Her fingers slid across his face and into his hair, hungrily pushing his face against hers. His hands dropped from her face and tightened their grip on her waist, pulling her closer.

They were inches apart now. She could count the eyelashes in his eyes, feel his hot breath wash over her face. Their noses brushed together, she closed her eyes, inhaling his scent deeply and…

Rose woke up instantly.

She sat up, her chest rising and falling quickly. She took a few deep breaths trying to calm herself down. Her heart was beating at an exceptionally fast rate and her stomach was fluttering insanely. It was a dream, just a dream. She had dreamt everything. Talking to Toodles, crying in his arms, kissing him. It was all a dream.

She wasn’t surprised to see that one tear roll down her face.

Her heart didn’t want it to be a dream and now her brain didn’t either. She had made that whole dream up in her mind. Her brain wanted him as much as every single other part of her body.  There wasn’t one single cell in her body that regretted that night anymore, not one. Rose had never felt like this before. She craved to touch him, to feel him next to her. She craved to hear his voice, feel his breath on her face. She craved his company; she craved every single part of him.

She ran a hand through her hair, looking around her room. Her homework was still lying on her bed, where she had left it before she had fallen asleep. The inkbottle had spilled and her pieces of parchment were now soaked black. But she didn’t even care about that anymore. She only wanted to see one person; she only had one thing in mind. There was no point denying it anymore. She knew what had happened.

“I’ve fallen for him,” she whispered to herself. “I’ve fallen for Scorpius Malfoy.”

The clock next to her bed signalled eight o’clock. She made a split second decision. He would be in his room, either doing homework or reading one of his many Quidditch magazines. She looked at herself in the mirror, expecting to see the worst. But she was surprised to see what her reflection looked like. She had a strange glow, a kind of natural shimmer around her. She had no make up on her face and her hair was falling onto her shoulders in a series of natural flaming red waves. She didn’t look like she’d been crying, there were no traces of tears except for that one that had escaped when she had woken up.

She exited her room and bolted across the dorm towards his. She stopped at the door, anticipation building up in her stomach, ready to explode. She didn’t know what she was doing. What was she going to say to him? She didn’t care. She just needed to see him.

Rose breathed in deeply and opened the door…
Hey there! I hope you liked this chapter even with the little cliff-hanger at the end there... and that the wait wasn't too long xD Thanks for all the support and reviews guys, I really appreciate it. Wow, I didn't think this story would get such a response but it did. Thanks again!
- Elisa

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