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CHAPTER ONE

Credit to Livilulu @TDA for the chapter image.


Passion erupted between the two.

Rose’s body arched as her fingers searched for and intertwined with her lover’s, emotions raging all through her as she neared the edge. She was blinded to everything inside the room, although there was nothing which mattered to her more than the wizard that hovered over her, blonde locks coated in sweat and blue eyes bright as he peered at her. Pink lips parted in breathy desire, and Rose’s own breath echoed out his name. “Scorpius…” It was the last word to tumble out on the edge of the passion, the witch trembling with the intense dregs of it all -- before collapsing on the mattress, the sheets cool against her heated skin. She was spent, and it showed in the wisp of her smile.

“That was incredible,” she breathed, lids fluttering as Scorpius rolled over onto his back, panting.

“Yes,” he confirmed with a pant, “it was.”

That was all he said before Rose rolled to her side, curling beside him and slipping her hand over his bare chest. She traced her fingers up and down his sternum, her grin as wide as it had been earlier that evening, when she had pulled him from the table in the Great Hall in the midst of supper and made a whispered promise of a fantastic evening to be had before he was sequestered with prefect patrols. She could never resist the wizard, even when they were locked away in Hogwarts castle. It meant being more creative with their trysts, but she was up for the challenge and usually succeeded in finding the right places to share her love with him, away from everyone.

She stretched, a contented sigh escaping before she sat up -- red hair flowing over her shoulders. “Do you think that there’s still time for more?” she asked wickedly, reaching for his left hand where his watch still encircled his wrist; she peered at the coming-of-age watch, the light of stars blinking up at her. Her head tilted and she grinned, but his hand was slipping free of her grip and he was sitting up before she could say anything else about the time.

“I’ve got to meet Albus in ten minutes,” he told her, reaching for his boxers and stepping out of the bed, slipping the underwear on and turning to face her. “You know if I don’t show up, he’ll come looking for me.”

“Or he’ll know we’re together and cover for you until I’m ready to let you go.” She crawled towards the edge of the bed, ready to pull him back to her, but Scorpius stepped away from her, shaking his head. For a moment, his face seemed clouded before he was grinning crookedly, the delusion fading. Rose kneeled in the bed. “What is it?”

“Twice already,” he said, holding up two fingers to detail their rendezvous score, “and we both know the longer I stay, the likelihood of us getting back before curfew is slim to none.” Rose was insatiable, and Scorpius knew that; she wasn’t ashamed, though, and just grinned. Scorpius chuckled. “We’ve still got tomorrow. And the next day, and the next day.” He slipped on his uniform, before leaning to kiss her lightly. “We’ve got many other chances.”

Rose pouted, but relented and began to dress. “I don’t know why you never want to just stay in here. You’re always so ready to head back to the main castle and the responsibilities. Just think of how fun it would be to hide out here, in the Room of Requirement, and just exist with only me and everything we could ever need appearing to us as we need it.” Her hands waved to encompass the room, the bed, the fireplace. “It’s so perfect for us.”

Scorpius did not look around as he adjusted the prefect badge on his lapel. “It’s not practical and you know that, Rose.” She frowned, brown eyes rolling at him as she angrily yanked her robe over her shoulder. Scorpius sighed and then stepped over to her, clearly needing to placate his irritated girlfriend. “You know I love you. Right?”

Silence fell between them as he held her chin in his hand, thumb caressing the soft skin. Rose looked at him, face slowly melting into a smile as she nodded. It was known to everyone, really, that Scorpius loved her. The wizard did not hide his feelings, always so open and so affectionate. Rose had known of his feelings for her even before she had fallen for him, herself. It was hard not to fall for him. He was the sweetest boy ever: caring, kind, funny, and a selfless soul that would give his shirt to someone that needed to be clothed. Rose loved him for that, and for the way that he took care of her -- emotionally, physically, intimately. She blushed, her head nodding slowly.

“I do. And I love you, too.” Her lips came to his in a small kiss and Scorpius returned it. For a moment, Rose tried to deepen it, to initiate something more intense than the sweet goodbye, but Scorpius was pushing away before her lips could even part, and the frown found its way back on her lips. She watched him gather the rest of his things as he headed towards the door. She stood coyly, like the school girl that she was, as she watched him start to leave her alone. It was always like this. That was why she clung to him whenever she had the chance. Scorpius was such a busy person in the castle. Head Boy and Prefect and leader of clubs tended to do that, and it meant that Rose was often a step behind him in what he needed to focus on at any given time. Still, she loved that he was so popular, and soon her smile was back in place when he turned to look back at her. “I’ll wait up for you. In the common room.”

He paused, hand on the knob of the door, before giving a nod. “I look forward to it.” With a wink, he was gone.

--------------------------------------------------------

“Get it together, Scorpius.”

The whispered words bounced around the alcove as Scorpius leaned against the stone wall, blue eyes closed and his fingers fisted in the material of his robes. He had just raced down two flights of stairs from the seventh floor where the Room of Requirement was, running as if it would help him escape the conflicting feelings that always assuaged him whenever he was with Rose. The witch was everything any teenager could ask for -- beautiful, smart, from a good family, and possessor of a willingness to do anything, anywhere, at any time. She was a young boy’s dream, but the truth was that she wasn’t Scorpius’ dream. Not really. He loved her dearly, he did, but his love was and only ever had been one of friendship. People had misconstrued it, and it was easy to do so. Scorpius had always worn his heart on his sleeve; always open with how he felt, and whom he cared for. Only, it was all just platonic.

Yet, when that platonic feelings had been construed to something more, Scorpius had gone with it. He didn’t know why, and two years later he still wasn’t sure. People had giggled over the idea of him and Rose -- the daughter of two of the members of the Golden Trio dating the son of their archenemies. It was the stuff of legend and romance, and Scorpius -- too sweet and accommodating -- had only ever smiled at the idea. He didn’t bother negating all of it, the feelings people assumed to be romantic. Instead, he had let Rose hold his hands and kiss him, because it’d made him feel good when it seemed that he was the only one without someone else. He had fallen victim to the pressure of the teenage world of angst and drama, and two years later he wasn’t sure he wanted to continue to play.

But, he was in so deep. He and Rose had crossed the boundaries into intimacy over the summer, and that had only seemed to make her cling to him more. He did it because, in a way, he did love her -- but would it be enough for him to keep the pretense? It would have to be. Besides, it wasn’t as if he knew what he wanted outside of Rose and their relationship; or, maybe he did, but the thought of it was too scary for him to bring it to the surface.

So, instead, he pushed it all down and played ignorant to what lay dormant inside of him. He had no choice.

Lids flickering open, Scorpius finally found his breath and stepped out of the alcove. He rubbed at his chest, fingers trembling lightly as he tried to get his bearings. He was on the fifth floor, and he turned left towards the stairs.

Before he could make it two steps, however, there was a tumble of bodies and limbs. Albus and another wizard stumbled into the corridor and Scorpius took a startled step back -- before his face flushed in a blush when he noted that the pair were locked in a heated snog, Albus pressing the wizard against the stone wall. Scorpius watched, his throat going dry as he bore witness to a moment that, truly, wasn’t that secret at all. Albus was open with who he was and what he liked -- and who he liked. He stared in awe as he watched their lips mold against each other and their hands explored. Albus’ lips dropped to the boy’s neck and Scorpius realized that it was Ernie Hook, a sixth year Hufflepuff that played on the Quidditch team. Ernie was clinging to Albus, clearly enjoying the ministrations on the skin of his neck -- until he realized that they had an audience when his eyes opened in a brief moment.

He squealed, pushed against Albus’ shoulder, and he tried to hide his face. “Al!” he squeaked out.

Albus pushed up, head turning and lips grinning as he spotted Scorpius. “Oh, didn’t realize we had an audience.” He chuckled, but did not let go of Ernie even though the boy was squirming. Ernie had always been shy, even if open to all about his own sexuality, and clearly didn’t think the idea of being caught making out with a Slytherin prefect right before curfew was a good thing to be joking about. He continued to try to hide as Albus kept talking. “What’s up, Scorp? Been there long?” The teasing in his voice only grew starker. “Or did we invade your rendezvous spot?”

Ernie’s face flushed more and he mumbled a quick, “I better go,” before wriggling free of Albus’ grip.

Albus turned to him. “Later. Midnight,” he told the wizard, letting him go and straightening his robes, the top of which was splayed open to reveal part of his chest. “I’ll come and get you outside your dormitory.”

The Hufflepuff was still speed-walking away, though, and Albus laughed. Scorpius still stood there in dumfounded silence, his face red hot and his hands trembling at his side. Throughout the exchange, his eyes had lingered on the wall, trying to make sure he didn’t do or say anything stupid. It was only when he felt a shove to his shoulder did he look up, gasping out a breath. He’d not even realized he’d been holding it, and he reached to rub his temple where he felt a little light headed. Albus, casual as ever despite having been caught snogging, chuckled at Scorpius.

“You alright, mate? You look like you’ve seen a ghost or something,” the prefect teased him.

Scorpius cleared his throat. “No, I just didn’t expect to see -- I mean, you guys came -- I just -- yeah.” He rubbed his cheek now, shaking his head as Albus’ laughter erupted, bouncing around the corridor.

“Relax, mate. S’not like you’ve never seen me snog someone before.”

Scorpius quickly turned away as he felt his head swim. “Yeah, I know. Sorry. It was just...unexpected.”

“Yeah, I guess.” Albus shrugged, but Scorpius didn’t see, on the count of having turned away from the wizard to stare down the corridor where Ernie had ran away. “I was actually just using him to waste some time. Thought you would’ve still been with Rose, you know. I know my cousin is always so reluctant to let you go.” He reached for Scorpius, slapping his shoulder.

Scorpius jerked forward, but caught his footing. “She was, actually. But, you know, we’ve got patrols and stuff to get through. Didn’t want to leave you to do it on your own. Though, I guess Ernie would have been willing to help.” He tried to sound casual, but he wasn’t sure it worked. It sounded bitter even to his own ears.

Albus, however, just laughed. “Oh, he was willing, alright, but not to help me patrol.” With a cocky bounce in his step, Albus bounded pass Scorpius and started down the corridor. “Well, we may as well get on with it, then. I’ve got a date at midnight and I’m sure Rose is waiting up for you in the common room. Guess it kind of works out that you two are in the same house. Makes it a whole lot easier to rekindle lost moments.” His brows waggled as he turned to face Scorpius, walking backward. “I, on the other hand, have to sneak out.” He sighed dramatically.

The blonde wizard, following Albus at a more leisurely pace, slipped his hand into the pockets of his robes. His lips twisted. “Wait,” Scorpius said, “so...you and Ernie are...dating?” He didn’t like the thump in his chest at that.

The snort, though, from Albus immediately belied the assumption. “Merlin, no. Snogging and the occasional shag. That’s about it. You know me. Why be tied to one when it’s more fun to be free?” He grinned. “Though, I know for faithful guys like you it doesn’t work that way. Don’t worry. I’m always safe.” He winked, before turning away.

Scorpius’ lips frowned and it took him a moment to label the emotion rolling through him as relief. The sight of the Hufflepuff wizard with Albus had done something to him that only happened whenever he saw Albus with another boy -- snogging at the breakfast table or behind the quidditch shed or in the back of class when they were meant to be listening to the professors. It was the same feeling that always bubbled to the surface whenever he left Rose, the warring notion that something wasn’t right and he was ignoring it. He scratched at his stomach, his eyes downcast as he followed the familiar path down to the first floor, where they were set to patrol along the Entrance Hall and down towards the dungeons. Ahead of him, Albus rambled on about what he and Ernie had done that day.

Scorpius swallowed, trying to tune it out as the feeling inside of him started to bubble even more. “Hey, Al,” he choked out, “did you hear about what happened in Divination the other day?”

Albus stopped rambling, a smirk tainting his lips as he shook his head. “I don’t know why you take that class, Scorp. The woman’s as batty as all the other Divination professors this school’s ever had.”

“Well, battiness aside,” Scorpius said, “she made this prediction that I’m going to grow antlers this year.”

“Antlers?” Albus erupted into laughter, and the two launched into a discussion about how that would even happen to him. It was easier to talk about than Ernie, or his other trysts, or anything else that would have continued to make the feeling inside of Scorpius swell and roil with unidentified emotions. Scorpius preferred it that way, really.

It was easier to pretend he didn’t, than to think he may have been attracted to Albus. Or, any boy, for that matter.

His father would never allow it.

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