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‘I accidentally crashed into his trunk.’
‘How long are you going to keep playing this game?’
The Melting Pot
Albus noticed him trying to bore holes in the back of Rose’s head with his baleful gaze, and as they unpacked their bags he leant down to him. ‘Scorp, please. Drop it.’ It was part instruction, part plead, and because that was usually enough, because Albus asked so little of Scorpius that he tended to do it readily, Albus must have made the assumption that he wouldn’t need to worry about it any more. At least, not right away.
Sackcloth and Ashes
‘I can’t believe he did that,’ said Hestia for about the fifteenth time.
‘You have to go really quite deep to find the nastier creatures these days, and I’m sure Professor Lockett knows what she’s doing.’
‘You took longer than anyone else to wake up.’ Rose stuck her nose in the air. ‘And Albus was worried.’
‘Serious issue, Malfoy,’ Jones hissed down at him, as if he thought this was discreet.
Hugo's face was turning into a mask of fury. ‘My family are ill. Five of my cousins are ill. Rose and Albus are the only ones still on their feet - I was woken up in the middle of the night by Lily, my cousin, my best friend, sounding like she was going to die or something. You two don’t have any brothers or sisters, or cousins, not here at Hogwarts. Who have you got to worry about apart from yourselves?’
Out of the Frying Pan
‘And, what, relax?’ Rose turned, stricken. ‘I can’t relax, somebody needs to keep an eye on things, it’s been hours since I’ve heard from any of the teachers, God knows where Hugo is, I’ve not had a chance to go down and see Hector, and now Matty is ill, and every single second I’m in here and I feel tired, or hungry, or the sun seems a little bit too bright out there I think it’s me coming down with it too, and I can’t afford to -’
Cooking on Gas
‘I don’t remember having to answer to you.’
Irons in the Fire
Scorpius coughed. ‘It’s an otter.’
‘Artemis is lovely; just because she stole your food -’
Albus looked him up and down as it was clear Scorpius wasn't leaving, and a broad grin crossed his face. 'All right,' he said, and extended his clenched hand for a fist-bump. 'Let's do this.'
‘Trust you to find an excuse to get your shirt off,’ muttered Selena, unimpressed.
Hot and Cold
Scorpius slid the drawer shut. ‘What’s going on?’
‘Older members of staff might have heard of him if they were awake,’ said Scorpius. ‘He clashed with many of them regularly. He was arrogant and insubordinate and thought he knew best.’
No Smoke Without Fire
Rose looked at him solemnly. ‘That’s a really good idea.’
‘Albus keeps the grounds safe. You and Lockett work on the cure. Jones is working on the ritual. Even bloody Selena is coordinating the House Elves in taking care of the infected. And what do I do?’ He met her gaze, ardent and frustrated.
Fire and Ice
He flashed her a grin. ‘Way I see it, tonight was a win. We got out with the reagents, some information, and our lives!’
Crash and Burn
‘Mm. This ritual. Trying to figure out what it might mean based on the half-baked recollections of a half-wit.’
Raked Over the Ashes
‘But you’ll demean me like that?’
‘I never apologised to you myself,’ she said, falteringly. ‘I mean, just myself. For going into the Forest like that. For not telling you. For letting Malfoy nick the Map and for agreeing to keep you out of it. I mean, I said sorry, but he was there and - I mean, I owe you an apology.’
'Are you even listening to me?'
House on Fire
Harley went tipping over backwards, little arms flailing, and hit the ground with a clatter. His chair spilled him onto the hard stone floor and for a few seconds he just lay there, sprawled out, stunned.
Break the Ice
'My point,' Rose mused, 'is that this is months of no school, no preparation.'
'Oh!' The House Elf brightened up as if he knew the answer - then his expression fell with clouds of guilt. 'Mister Malfoy left the building early this morning. Mister Malfoy is out in the grounds. Mister Malfoy was brought tea, but threw the cup at Bodger.'
Down in Flames
'So why didn't you say anything?'
Out of the Kitchen
'What do we win?' asked Scorpius.
'Point is, there was no good thing to do. Dump Hector and hurt him while he's suffering? Don't dump him and carry on with Scorpius behind his back? Don't dump him and shoot Scorpius down? I don't know what you should have done.' Selena paused. 'That said, I'm impressed you picked Secret Option D: Dump Hector, shoot Scorpius down, and be miserable. That might have been the worst option of all.'
On an Open Fire
'Great brick wall impression, mate!' he said as he reeled, and Albus put out a strong hand to steady him. 'Very life-like.'
Cold as Ice
'I'm here to do a job, Malfoy. I do the job. I'm taking care of sick kids and staff and otherwise I'm conducting my duties as directed by the ranking Ministry official, whom you took great pleasure in reminding me all those months ago is Professor Lockett.'
The House Elf bristled. 'That girl is Hermione Granger's daughter. Don't you imply I don't care.' It was the most overt admission, Scorpius realised, he'd ever heard Harley make that he valued a human, any human's wellbeing for any reason but absent-minded pragmatism. The shot of concern running through Harley's voice, the voice of this House Elf who had been so dismissive at the care-taking of the magical children of Hogwarts, was genuine.
Melt Into Me
Scorpius gave a jerky nod, lips thinning, and didn't take his eyes off Rose. 'Jones is asleep?'
'You're just gonna try an' wing this? You're dealing with professionals, boy.'
That Vital Spark
'I heard you were awake.'
Blaze of Glory
'Oh, good,' said Scorpius. 'So we get to dodge Dementors and, if we're really unlucky, lingering mercenaries to rejig a horribly powerful evil ritual, but at least punctuality is optional!'
'I'm spearheading proposals for not just magical global conferences to fight this, but a magical global council to fight them. International unity, and the Ministry's granting me the power to act on this, power to fight this Council. Stop them. Bring them to justice. I promise you, sweetheart, the people who did this will be brought to account.'
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