Lucy was simply glad that Jules was gone when Albus arrived. Albus took one look at her, took one look at the dead body, and let lose a long string of swearwords that Lucy would never ever repeat.
He looked at her and sighed heavily. “Lucy, what are we going to do with you?”
“Wrap me up in the fuzzy purple blanket of yours? That’s what I called you for after all you know.” Lucy said quietly, still trying desperately to ignore the dead body in the alley.
Albus grinned and got the blanket out (charmed to fit undetected in his back-pocket), wrapping it around her gently.
“Might as well be yours with how often you’ve been using it lately?”
“More than I’d like. I didn’t kill him. I found him. Just in case you were wondering.”
Albus laughed, and Lucy let herself fall into his arms, comforted that at least she wasn’t alone in the alley with a dead body.
“Lucy, I can assure you that that was the last thing on my mind.” Albus assured her. “Aurors are on their way.”
No sooner had he said it before several sharp cracks shattered the darkness, announcing the aurors arrival, Scorpius at their head, looking as though he really wanted to strangle someone just about now.
“Lucy whatever-your-middle-name-is Weasley, you have got to be one of the stupidest women I have ever encountered! What were you doing walking down dark alleyways off Knockturn Alley, at night, on your own, with a murderer with a preference for weapons from your shop running amok?!” Scorpius hissed, stalking up to her and Albus.
Lucy bristled, pulling herself to her full height. Which wasn’t very impressive at all to be honest. Especially when wrapped in purple blankets. Even though she was wearing high heels. Platforms even. She was still shorter then him. She found that infuriating. Scorpius was finding the high heels frightfully distracting. It should be illegal to look that good in heels.
“Her middle name is Holly.” Albus piped up from beside her.
Lucy shot Albus a death glare and he held up his hands in surrender.
“Well its hardly confidential information is it?”
“Well its not public knowledge either Albus Severus.”
“Hey, I like my middle name. Unlike some people. Its Scorpius’ middle name too! We’re like middle name twins. Plus he has Hyperion as well! Because one middle name isn’t good enough for purebloods and all that jazz.”
Lucy looked at him coldly. “Sometimes I wonder what Uncle Harry was thinking naming you all after dead people.”
“Hey, Luna’s still alive!” Albus said, causing Lucy to feel the deep urge to stick her tongue out at him, though she was far too old to indulge in such childishness in public.
“Except I think the Luna bit is more a nod to Remus Lupin than Luna Scamander.” Lucy insisted.
Scorpius looked like he was genuinely about to explode.
“Lucy Holly Weasley, can we please cease discussing middle names and discuss your immense level of stupidity and complete disregard for personal safety!” He barked.
Lucy blinked at Scorpius, (Scorpius Severus Hyperion Malfoy apparently, she filed that information for future use) frustratingly cool and composed. She made him want to tear his hair out and snog her senseless simultaneously.
“Does it matter? The point is she found the body.” Albus replied, dragging a hand tiredly through his unruly hair. “She attracts them. Like a magnet.”
“I do not!” Lucy exclaimed indignantly. “I went down here because I heard screaming.”
“Merlin, how stupid can you be?” Scorpius moaned, running a hand across his face in fraustration. This case couldn’t possibly be good for his blood pressure. Damn Lucy Weasley was good for his blood pressure.
“It’s her revolver too.” Albus added helpfully.
“Technically it’s not mine, I sold it. From my shop. Legally.”
“You don’t have a license to sell wolfsbane, but you have a license to sell firearms?” Scorpius grounded out suspiciously.
Lucy looked at him coldly. “It’s a fake.” She said, as thought that at least should be obvious even to a five-year-old. “A solid piece of metal designed as a paperweight. It was bought by Maynard himself.”
“I can’t believe you went alone down a dark alleyway off Knockton Alley because you heard screaming.” Scorpius said, shaking his head and running his hand through his hair, looking like he wanted to literally tear his hair out at her stupidity.
Lucy remained stubbornly quiet, and realised that Albus was looking at her thoughtfully.
“But you weren’t alone were you Lucy.” Albus murmured quietly.
Lucy glared at Albus, mentally informing him to shut up, while Scorpius eyes narrowed suspiciously and snapped to her face.
“Lily said you were going to meet someone. And I don’t think it was Michael Maynard in a dark alley.”
“I was alone.” Lucy said stubbornly, but Albus was shaking his head, just as stubborn. Those stupid, freaking Weasley stubborn genes!
“Lucy, no way would you have gone a dark alleyway on your own, your not that stupid. I know your shop is on the corner of Knockton Alley, but you rarely actually venture down it.” Albus insisted.
“I was alone.” Lucy insisted.
“Withholding evidence is a criminal offence Weasley.” Scorpius hissed, his voice threatening and dangerous low as he glared at her.
Lucy glared back at him.
“Its pretty close to the full moon, isn’t it Lucy?” Albus said quietly.
Scorpius transferred his glare to Albus, raising his eyebrow quizzically.
“Yes Albus.” Lucy replied calmly, still glaring firmly at Scorpius.
“You were selling wolfsbane.” Albus concluded.
Lucy transferred her heated glare to Albus and he took a step back, fearing for his personal health with that glare on him.
“I thought you were a healer, not a damn interrogator.” Lucy said quietly, her voice deadly calm.
“You were in a dark alleyway in Knockton Alley with a dead body with a werewolf?” Scorpius said, returning his glare to Lucy. “Merlin you really are stupid!”
“I haven’t sold anything tonight,” Lucy insisted, reminding herself that it was true as they hadn’t finished their business at her shop “and I was alone.” Technicalities she reminded herself. She was alone when Albus arrived. That was all they needed to know.
“I’m sure I can find out who exactly was with you if I bribe a couple of people.” Scorpius drawled.
“Oh yeah, because that’s real ethical!” Lucy hissed “People in Knockton Alley will tell you anything you want if you bribe them!”
Scorpius scowled, they both knew it was true.
“Lucy, were you with…” Albus started. But he never finished his sentence.
“Herbifors!” Lucy said, quietly, calmly, composed, as though she were not in the process of cursing on of her favourite cousins.
“Damn it Lucy, I wasn’t going to say who it was!” Albus hissed as roses (a nice dark red shade of the nice traditional English variety, Lucy had taste and style after all) sprouted from every inch of his body.
Quickly he was a walking talking rosebush.
“Good, because I was alone.” Lucy hissed threateningly before releasing the spell with a quiet disgruntled ‘finite’.
“I know you’re stressed out about all this Lucy, but how about we don’t take it out on me? Look, Scorpius will take your statement quick and nicely, and I’ll take you home.” Albus, said, itching his now uncomfortable skin absentmindedly.
Lucy nodded mutely.
“I need to stop by the shop first.” Lucy muttered to Albus once she’d given her statement and he finally dragged her away from the murder scene.
Albus nodded without asking questions and immediately steered her towards her shop. Lucy remembered why Albus was one of her favourite cousins. He knew when to not ask questions. That and he was honest to a fault. He didn’t try to be fake or portray himself well to the press. He was honestly his own scowling, smirking, compassionate, lovable self.
She undid the quickly done charms and instantly when to the kitchen in the back and took the box of wolfsbane potions and made to place it back in the cupboard.
“I’ll deliver it for you.” Albus said quietly.
Yet another reason to love him.
“How is he, Jules?” He asked.
Lucy sighed, handing the box to him.
“Tired. Ill. Pale.” She said quietly. “I just wish so desperately that I could do something for him. Something he wouldn’t interpret as pity.”
“I’m surprised he left you in the alleyway with a dead body.”
“He wasn’t there to begin with.” Lucy insisted, and Albus shrugged with a grin.
“If you say so. Anything else you need from here?”
Lucy looked at him hesitantly. “Would you help me water the plants upstairs? I don’t like… I mean, upstairs. I don’t like… being there on my own. I’ve rather neglected them.” She said in a small halting voice.
Albus’ face softened. “Of course I’ll help.”
They ascended the stairs and each grabbed a watering can and filled it before moving systematically from plant to plant.
“You should get Arthur to help you. Brother-sister bonding time and all that.” Albus suggested.
Lucy snorted. “He’d get poisoned or eaten by them. He failed Herbology. I’m only letting you do this because I know that you know what you’re doing.”
“If you’re uncomfortable being up here on your own, you’re going to need help from someone.” Albus insisted.
Lucy sighed. “I know.”
She knew. But she hardly wanted to admit, even to herself, that whenever she went up here alone now, she was frightened of finding dead men hanging from the rafters. She wondered if she now also would be frightened of dark narrow alleyways.
It was late and Lily was packing up her stuff and ready to hand over her shift to Wesley when Scorpius and his aurors finally made their way back to the auror department with photos, evidence and the body.
Lily couldn’t help but notice that Scorpius looked like a menacing, black, pouting thundercloud. And she figured it wasn’t the murder that had caused the expression. She’d known Scorpius for too many years now. When a murder bothered him he looked pensive and frustrated. This thundercloud only made its appearance when women were involved.
“Who’s bothering you?” She dared to ask, wondering if it really was a good idea to ask him.
“Your stupid cousin.” Scorpius snapped.
“Lucy?” Lily guessed.
“She insists she was alone at the crime scene, while Albus seems to think she was with a werewolf, but she won’t budge on it!” Scorpius whispered fruastrated.
Lily regarded Scorpius carefully, her lips pursed in thought. Scorpius got the distinct impression that just like her brother, Lily with that snippet of information was well aware exactly who had been with Lucy when she’d discovered the body.
“Look, who she was with is none of your business.” Lily said finally. Scorpius looked at her incredulously.
“She’s withholding crime scene evidence!” He exclaimed frustrated, throwing his hands irritably in the air.
Lily shook her head firmly. “No she’s not. She knows it wasn’t him. Heck, I know it wasn’t him, because I have a pretty good idea who she was with. But she’s not going to tell you, because as Albus said, he’s a werewolf and she’s not going to tell you because she thinks that the fact that he’s a werewolf is going to make him an instant suspect, regardless of whether he has a motive for murder or whether all the evidence is against it being him. She knows people will happily blame werewolves for pretty much anything.”
Scorpius stared at the wall thoughtfully. “I just don’t get her.” He snorted finally.
Lily laughed. “What is there to get? It’s Lucy. You can’t just box and label her.”
“It would be so much easier if I could.”
Lily’s eyes twinkled. “But that’s why you like her Scorpius. You don’t like the girls with easy labels. You like the girls that surprise you. And keep on surprising you.”
Scorpius looked thoughtful.
Lily leaned in closer. “I can promise you Scorpius, Lucy will keep on surprising you until you day you die. And you’re not going to find another girl like her.”
“You sound like your playing matchmaker.”
“Of course I am. I have so many cousins, its great fun!”
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