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Chapter Image by Lostmyheart!


He had always loved that flower. Ever since he was a kid, he would spend hours in the garden. There was something about the fragrance, the beauty, and the warmth that drew him in. Not a single day would go by without him attending to all that grew in the backyard of Malfoy Manor – but his favourite was always the red rose. Even when he went to Hogwarts, he didn’t stop visiting the garden every summer, just to look at his beloved roses.

For the first few years, she had faded into the background – he had barely noticed her. He was a Slytherin and she was a Gryffindor. They rarely had any classes together and no mutual friends. He was unaware of her brilliance – until the day she talked to him in the prefects’ carriage on the train in their fifth year.

That day, he befriended her. She was as vibrant as the red of the flower, as delicate as the petals of the bud, as beautiful as his favourite plant and as untouchable as its thorns. She lived up to her name.

Everything about Rose Weasley drew him towards her, from the sparkle in her eyes and the chime in her laughter to the softness in her voice and the red of her hair. Just as he had an inexplicable attraction towards the roses, he was inexplicably attracted to the girl carrying their name.

They became fast friends, patrolling the corridors together, organising prefect meetings and discussing homework in the library. Sometimes, they’d sit by the lake in the sun and talk for hours. It was an unlikely bond, that of a Gryffindor and a Slytherin, and yet it persevered even after they graduated.

Through the years, he watched her love and he watched her nurse her wounds over breakups. He watched her smile as she went on dates and he watched her cry when her heart was broken. He watched his Rose blossom with some and wither with others, and he watched her wrath for those who touched her thorns. He stood with her every time, being her ‘friendly date’ when she was alone on Valentine’s Day, cheering her up with chocolates after a bad breakup, bringing her flowers when she was having a bad day at work and just being a good friend whenever she needed him.

Yet, he would never be anything more. His love was meant to nurture her smile and watch her bloom but he could not pluck this rose and keep it for himself. She had to find the one who would and she did.

Today, he watched as she stood beaming in a white dress holding a bouquet of red roses, kissing the man she loved. Many would call his love unrequited but to him his love was fulfilled. After all, a gardener groomed his roses for someone else to take them away one day – and when that day arrived, he gave them away with a little pain yet a strange contentment.

A/N: This story is exactly 500 words (exluding this Author's Note of course) and I'm so excited as this is the first time I have tried the Every Word Counts Challenge! It was also written for the February Writing Challenge at The Slytherin Common Room where my prompt was to write a 'sad romance'. Last, but not least, it is also for Lostmyheart who requested it in my Stories Offered theread.

So, what do you think? Did it turn out okay? What did you think of my portrayal of Scorpius? Of how he saw Rose? Of their friendship? Of the ending? The descriptions? I would really love any and all feedback so please do review. Thank you!

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