For Lysander Scamander, looking at his brother was like looking into a mirror. The two seventeen year olds shared the same dirty blonde hair, large grey eyes, broad shoulders and towering frames. The differences between them existed almost entirely in their personalities, but such differences could often be seen in their smiles. When the outgoing, popular Lorcan smiled, he smiled wide, flashing his white teeth and deepening the dimples in his pale cheeks. Lysander’s smile, on the other hand, was as shy and unobtrusive as he was. It was so slight you could barely notice it. His dimples would appear as small creases and his lips would curve slightly upwards before falling almost immediately.
Lysander had little cause to smile. He had always been the quiet, awkward twin and in the six years he’d spent at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, he had not made a single friend. Lorcan and a girl named Lily Potter had always put up with him, but Lysander could not bear to be around her. Upon seeing Lily alone, Lysander would find his stomach filled with butterflies. Lily was a family friend the brothers had known since early childhood and for as long as Lysander could remember, he had been in love with her. There was just one problem - when he was around Lily, he could barely speak. If she so much as looked at him, his cheeks would burn red and his heart would beat so loud he was sure she could hear it.
When Lorcan and Lily started dating over the summer holidays, he and Lysander grew apart. Lorcan already had almost everything: he was the seeker on the Gryffindor quidditch team; he was the most popular kid in school; he was his parents’ favourite son. The thing Lorcan didn’t have that he and Lysander both wanted was the affection of one Lily Luna Potter: a girl in their house and their year at Hogwarts. Of course, Lorcan eventually managed to win her over and Lysander felt betrayed. His own brother had asked out the only girl who had ever made him feel anything, who had ever made him feel alive. Now he could only feel empty and if possible, more alone than he had ever felt before.
It wasn’t until the day they left for their seventh year at Hogwarts that Lorcan told him. Lysander was arranging piles of neatly folded clothes and robes in his trunk when he heard the familiar knock of his brother’s fist on his bedroom door.
“Hey, Ly,” Lorcan said, “can I come in?”
A man of few words, Lysander didn’t reply. He simply opened the door in response. Lorcan entered and began pacing the room, causing his brother to watch him curiously. Lorcan wasn’t one to pace. He seemed nervous. When Lysander finally caught his brother’s eye, he raised a quizzical eyebrow at his pacing twin.
“I’ve got to tell you something and I don’t think you’ll like it,” Lorcan managed.
“What is it? Spill.”
“Well, you know how you, uh, liked Lily once, at some point… Back in the day…. I think it was like fourth year or something. Ages ago, really. I mean, you probably don’t remember actually. ‘cause if you still liked her, I mean, you’d have asked her out by now, right?”
“You’re dating her?” Lysander asked, already knowing the answer.
“Yeah!” Lorcan replied. “Did she tell you?”
“No, but I gathered from the way you were just talking about me having liked her.”
“Awesome. I knew you’d be cool with it,” said Lorcan before spinning around and leaving the room without another word.
Lysander could feel his heart his sinking. He wanted to be happy for his brother, but how could he? His brother surely knew he still liked Lily. He’d mentioned weeks ago he was dating someone new and was reluctant to name her and why? Because Lorcan knew Lysander was interested in Lily, but did he care how Lysander felt? Hardly. At least, it sure as hell didn’t seem like he cared.
Still feeling betrayed, Lysander made an effort to get on the Hogwarts train before almost anyone else. He hoped to find a compartment far away from his and his brother’s usual compartment. He had no intention of riding all the way to Hogwarts with his dream girl and his twin who stood wrapped up in each others’ arms on the platform, his chin buried in her dark red hair.
Before he could find a fitting compartment, Lysander felt a pair of hands grab two fistfuls of his robes and pull him into one not far from the back of the train.
“Where do you think you’re going, Scamander?” hissed Jacob Pinwalden, a beefy-looking Slytherin seventh year.
Lysander struggled and wriggled his way out of Pinwalden’s grip.
“If you think for a second you and your Order of the Phoenix buddies are going to stop me again this year, you’ve got another thing coming, Scamander.”
“Order of the Phoenix?” Lysander asked, “You’re out of your mind. The Order disbanded after the second war.”
Confused, Lysander left the Slytherin bully in the compartment and set out in search of another one. He had no idea what Pinwalden was talking about, but knowing he had his N.E.W.T.s coming up this year, Lysander had no intention of finding out. Clearly Pinwalden had mistaken him for Locan (people always did) and clearly, Lorcan was up to something. Lysander sat down in an empty compartment and thought, “It’s none of my business.” There was no way he was getting himself caught up in his brother’s stupid schemes this year. No bloody way.
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