“Would ya stop looking at me like that?”
“Will you tell me the full truth of the situation?”
The twin boys stared one another down, each waiting for the other to break. It was a silly ritual since they both knew who always won. Lorcan used his thumb and forefinger to adjust where his square frames sat on his nose without dropping his glance.
“Okay fine.” Lysander threw his hands up in defeat and slouched back in his armchair, disappointed in himself. Yet, as he looked out the window just over his shoulder and remembered the image of Lily Potter continuing to argue with him while she was hanging half-way out of one similar, he found himself smiling.
In moments such as these, it’s important to remember that Lorcan and Lysander are twins, identical twins at that. That means that they have the same jawline and the same upbringing. It means they shared secrets with each other that they’d never tell anyone else, and it means Lysander understood that when Lorcan ended an argument with ‘all right then,’ what he really meant was, ‘when you realize what you’re doing is stupid, I’ll be around to say told ya so.’ So when Lorcan saw a grin starting to spread across his brother’s face, he knew the answer to his question could only mean trouble.
“Who was she Sand?”
Lysander let his head fall backwards to stare at the ceiling with a groan. “Fine, but I don’t want to hear a lecture after I tell you, yeah?” He received a nod in agreement and let out a deep breath before answering.
Lorcan repeated back unable to contain his horror.
“You agreed no lectures!”
Lysander sprung up from his chair and stormed into the kitchen to run from whatever advice his brother was now intending to give him. He grabbed a glass and used his wand to fill it with water as Lorcan chased him down.
“That was before you told me Lily Potter climbed into your bed last night! Sand, she is the absolute last complication you need in your life at this time!”
Lysander shrugged and took a drink of his water instead of replying.
“You know the scrutiny a relationship with her will bring on you if you choose to pursue her.” Still his brother seemed undeterred, “You know the tension it would cause on your team? With Wood-”
“She and Kit have been over for years and besides he’s an arse.”
He sat the glass back on the counter and tried to run again, but Lorcan stood in his path.
“Do you even hear yourself right now?” Lorcan followed his brother’s eyes until he met his gaze, “I’ve never known you to talk about people that way-”
“Well I’ve made an unfaithful prats exception.”
Lysander pushed passed his brother and continued down the hall into his bedroom. Lorcan knew he had already made his point when his brother started picking up the dirty clothes that scattered the floor rather than continue the conversation.
He stopped in the doorway, crossing his arms over his chest. This situation was always seemed his brother’s fate. The whims of his heart were what guided him, like a ship’s sail. It was inevitable that the winds would steer him straight into a storm bound to rip through the sails and leave his brother drifting aimlessly on the waves.
Lorcan wasn’t guided by something so fickle. He, instead, navigated his life by the stars. Constant and steady, always knowing where his next step would take him. He would always see the storms coming.
“Okay, fine then. Let’s continue with your logic shall we? What does it say about her judgement? to fall in love with someone like Wood?”
Lysander tossed one of his practice robes, covered in a thick layer of mud, into the hamper.
“It says that she chooses to see the good in people, rather than the shite.”
Kit Wood and Lily Potter seemed destined in so many ways that no one batted an eye when they finally made it official. And they played their parts so well for the cameras over the years. When he made the Cannons roster it was like poetry; Lily Potter and Rose Weasley’s men would be playing on the same pitch.
Lysander had been playing with the Appleby Arrows back then. He was dating a dark haired girl named Arabella. His biggest concern was if he’d see any playing time. Then, suddenly, the only headline that could knock Scorpius and Rose’s divorce off the front page was Kit’s torrid affair and the endless opinion pieces about how Lily should react.
She withdrew from public life for months, which, for most people, wouldn’t have been such an issue. Rose ran off to another country and most people didn’t notice, but Lily Potter? Lily seemed to know everyone and somehow be everywhere...until she just wasn’t.
When she did finally step back into the spotlight it was on the arm of a new bloke every two weeks. Lysander knew that the parade of suitors was really what had Lorcan up in arms, afraid that his brother would just be another in her line-up of coping mechanisms.
“What about Malfoy then?”
“What about Malfoy?” Lysander fell backwards onto his bed in defeat of the never-ending questions.
“You said she climbed into your bed by accident - who’s bed did she mean to be in?”
Lysander propped himself up on his elbows, “You just assume it was Scorpius?”
He made sure to sound annoyed, even though he insinuated as much to Lily the other night.
“It’s a reasonable assumption. He seems to be the only male constant in her life apart from her brothers. Not to mention the suspension he received after hexing his own teammate after the whole scandal broke. Logic dictates that their bond is more than friendship. And you don’t need the captain of your team-”
“Stop. Just stooooop.” Lysander fell back onto the bed again and covered his face with a pillow. He screamed into it for three seconds and then sat back up as if he hadn’t made a scene. “How was your week Lorcan? Speak to mum did ya?”
Lorcan let out a sigh before adjusting his glasses, “She was upset to hear you and Laurel split up, but I explained your heart in the situation...won’t she be chuffed to hear about your new prospects.”
Lysander threw the pillow at his brother for teasing him and Lorcan tossed it right back. They shared a laugh, which was welcomed by both after a slightly heated exchange.
“It’s Lily Potter, mate.” Lysander picked at a string on his duvet, “She climbed in through my window lookin’ for the captain of the Chudley Cannons...even if I did fancy her it’s not likely she’d look my way.”
Lysander was being humble, of course. He was a very eligible bachelor, especially since he’d been signed to the most popular Quidditch team in the English league. Which is why Lorcan answered with a simple shrug,
“All right, then.”
Lysander watched the snitch dart around Kit’s broom lazily that next day at practice. It was as if it knew he had no desire to capture it and so had no need to run away.
“Scamandar look out!”
The warning came too late and a bludger slammed into the young seeker’s ribs. The force pushed him down the pitch before pushing him off his broom entirely. If the cracked rib hadn’t taken his breath away from him, the swift propulsion towards the earth sure did the trick. He heard more shouting and saw a couple of his teammates pull out their wands before the edges of the world started to blur and eventually fade to black.
“Hey. Sander. Come on, you daft fool. If you open your eyes I can keep you out of hospital.”
It’s easy to think Scorpius’ tense tone was because he didn’t want another injury listed on his team’s record. After all, this was the third time Lysander had been taken out by a bludger that season alone. He had a bad habit of thinking and he wasn’t a multi-tasker. So when he was in his thoughts, he wasn’t in the present. His lack of mindfulness was a high risk factor for his chosen profession and one of the reasons the Arrows gave him such little playing time. It was also a caveat his new team manager issued when he was signed to the Cannons.
“Is it enough if I just open one...but I make it look like I’m winking at you?”
His eyes peeked open, letting the light in slowly. They took in his surroundings, but everything was blurry. After a moment or so, the clouds started to take shape, followed by trees and finally landing on Scorpius who was sitting next to him. His fingers picked at the blades of grass at his side to confirm he was safe on the ground before he pushed himself up into a sitting position.
He reached for his rib, surprised that all of his motion hadn’t caused pain.
“Louis cast a suspension field to float you down. The bludger cracked two ribs, but the tonic should have reset them. I was told if you didn’t wake up after two hours I had to take you to hospital…”
He pulled his knees up to his chest with a deep inhale - overjoyed that he felt the air filled his lungs. In the scheme of Quidditch injuries, this one didn’t seem to even rank in his top six.
“You have got to pay more attention.” Scorpius continued in a tone that made him seem more than only two years his elder. “These injuries are disruptions, Sander. They take time away from our practices, they take attention off of your talent.”
“You really think I have talent?”
“You have a talent for getting yourself hurt.” Scorpius tossed the quaffle he’d been tossing back and forth in his hands at Lysander’s head - but the blonde caught it before it could collide, “And you have incredible reflexes - when you bother to pay attention.”
Lysander tossed the ball back to his teammate, “I know, okay. I get it. I’ll try to stay focused. I’ll work on it. Really I will.”
Scorpius was the first to stand, and then he reached a hand down to his teammate to accept. After getting to his feet, Scorpius continued to grip his hand, “You do not lack focus, Scamander. You lack discipline. You lack the resoluteness to act or not act and thus get lost in a maze of possibilities. You want to do better?” The Slytherin pulled his teammates closer to him and squeezed his hand tighter in a silent threat, “Keep your personal life off my pitch.”
Relief swept over him when Malfoy released his hand and turned to leave the pitch, but it came rushing back as the words settled in his mind. Lily must’ve told him about the other night, but how had she told the story to illicit this sort of response? The possibilities started swirling around in Lysander’s mind just as Scorpius accused and he quickly shook them away.
“Nothing happened.” He shouted after the retreating shadow, “I don’t know what she told you mate, but she’s clearly having a laugh.”
Scorpius stopped and seemed to hang his head before placing his hands in his pockets and turning back around.
“Act or don’t act on whatever feelings she has stirred in you, it does not concern me either way- but understand that she is indeed having a laugh and it is at your expense.”
“It’s just...you do seem a bit concern-”
“Because pining for her had you staring at Wood for half our scrimmage today instead of doing your job.”
It was such a logical and calmly delivered reason that Lysander had to swallow his next accusation. Instead, he stared at the ground for a moment and kicked at the dirt. It had always unnerved him to argue with Scorpius, he didn’t get riled up like most people would. Even Lorcan, in all his wisdom, would need to take a deep breath in a heated debate - but Malfoy rarely seemed to even register anger.
“I made her smile, Scorp...and knowing I could do that made me smile.” Finding the right words was always difficult for Lysander so he tended to ramble through all the ones that occurred to him until it made sense, “Look, I don’t know her...I don’t even know what I want from her...but she was chaotic and gorgeous and wily and certain and...and then you toss in her past with Kit and you and-”
“And this is why you spent two hours laying in the grass while your bones mended.”
Scorpius had taken his hands from his pockets to cross them over his chest. He didn’t seem moved by Lysander’s impassioned speech anymore than he had been angered by the accusations.
“People only get more complex the closer you get to them, Lysander. They do not get simpler.”
Scorpious stood over the young Scamander again, but this time it wasn’t intimidating. He didn’t have the icy stare of a detached teammate, but the conviction of someone who believed in what he was saying, “Do you know why that is? Because you learn to expect things. To expect reactions, expect forgiveness, expect opinions...and people like Lily...You can’t put expectations on her because she’ll circumvent them every single time.”
“That’s half the fun though innit? Not knowing what’s gonna happen next?”
“Sure.” Malfoy shrugged matter-of-factly, “Up until she petitions you for divorce and moves to Cairo.”
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