Lily didn’t realize how fast their first Quidditch game was approaching. To be fair, the only date she had in her mind was the first Hogsmeade weekend she would be allowed to go to, the weekend that fell after their game.
Her schedule was hectic but she learned to embrace. Exhaustion and a busy mind could stave off nightmares and visions. She continued the extra lessons, and both Professor’s warned her of the danger of trying to compensate actual solutions with a tiring schedule. They said visions could hit her suddenly. If the nightmares stopped altogether then there was a real concern. The visions weren’t just coming to the surface when her mind was at it’s most vulnerable.
These thoughts weren’t on her mind as she got ready. She focuses on braiding the hair close to face, integrating it into a tight ponytail. The long sleeve shirt she wore was dark green, with two white bands on the sleeve and the crest on her breast. The pants were white and her robes were dark green, the name Potter emblazoned on the back. Below that was a large number 6. She scowled at that. Flint thought he was being clever by giving her her mum’s number. James proudly wore the number seven when he took the field as Chaser, a tribute to both his father and grandfather.
“You better head down to the Great Hall,” Simone said.
“Or to Malfoy’s room,” Daphne teased.
“I’ll go with you to breakfast,” Esther said as she grabbed her black jumper. She put a hand on Lily’s shoulder and flickered her eyes to the door. Lily followed her roommate’s lead and was thankful for her intervention. “I knew they would never let you leave without a proper interrogation once you got them started.” When they entered the Common Room Esther halted. “Do you want to go…” She tilted her head in the direction of the boys staircase.
The pair walked to the Dining Hall and sat at separate ends of the table. Lily took a seat beside Jordi in the middle in the middle of the table. He was busy shoveling his food into his mouth. Nott was beside him, but he was on reserve for this match. The older members were missing, which wasn’t surprising for Ophelia, but for Scorpius and Damon it was odd.
Eventually, though, more and more people filter in. Ravenclaw’s Quidditch team comes out in one large group and all sit in the same vicinity. When the older members of the team comes in, Scorpius slides in beside her, a smile on his face as he reaches for a slice of toast and dumps half a spoonful of eggs on his plate along with a sausage.
“Big eater,” Lily teases as she takes a drink of her pumpkin juice.
Scorpius just fixes her with that look of his and finishes the food on the plate. They sit there for sometime and Lily swears the air seems to be buzzing with electricity. Maybe, though, it’s just pulsing through her veins. She caught a glimpse of the clear sky out of a window and she can’t wait to get on her broom.
A few minutes later they had down to the locker rooms. Lily puts on her guards and Ophelia double checks them to make sure they are on correctly. What confuses her is the way she latches onto her wrist and pulls her into the boys’ half of the locker room. When they pass the partition she sees a banner with the words Slytherin in loopy silver writing, the background is emerald green with a green snake twisting around the letters. In fact the entire room is decorated.
“Ophelia’s idea,” Damon said, “but Scorpius helped her with it and I supervised.” He looked around the room and motioned for them to get into one big circle. “This is the first game of the year and I know we’re a young team, but we’re also faster, cunning and more prepared. We will win this I can feel it.” He says, then instructs them to put their hands in the middle. “Remember, me and Ophelia will signal the plays. Stay focused. Ready?”
“1,” Ophelia starts, jumping in, “2, 3…”
The sound is surprising, but they all grab their brooms and head to the entrance to enter the pitch. Lily bounces on her feet as they prepare to be announced, she notices Scorpius with a peculiar look on his face. Nerves? She goes over beside him and laces her hand with his and gives him a smile. Scorpius takes a deep breath and squeezes her hand.
“Mount your brooms!” Damon instructs.
Lily and Scorpius release their hands at the same time and jump on, flying towards the sky. They take their positions, the balls are released and the game begins.
Lily is exhausted. Even with the low temperature and wind she is exhausted with all this flying around. Jordi, Ophelia and her make a good team, but they keep on losing possessions. Lily feels the anger bubbling up inside of her and, as she flies with the Quaffle, she is ready to do whatever it takes to get it through the hoop.
“Look at Potter go!” The announcer shouts. It’s Flynn Jordan, one of Fred’s friends. “Quite a surprise to see this Potter on the pitch, but I guess it’s in her blood. With the way she’s playing she may be the next Ginny Potter.”
This only motivates her more, she lean down and shifts to the left, going fast in low. Ophelia is in her line of vision and she tosses it, the blonde makes an effortless throw right into the hoop. Right now they’re in front of Ravenclaw’s bleachers, but she still hears Slytherin across the pitch. Quidditch is practically the only thing they allow themselves to show emotion for. As Lily goes up higher she catches sight of a familiar face in the stand. Albus. He’s right amongst all the Ravenclaw’s, not even pretending to be cheering for his sister. No, he sits next to that same boy from the night before.
“Ophelia!” she shouts. “We need to run Gryffindor defense and then Jordi and I can start the figure 8 play.”
“No.” The blonde gets close to her. “Don’t you dare try to call the shots or you’ll lose the game.” The Gryffindor play is known for being gutsy and stupid, it usually leads to at least one foul being called if not more. In practice when they tried to run it Lily practically got a concussion. It is only for a desperate situation. “Right now we need to help Flint catch that damn snitch.”
“Looks like there’s about to be a cat fight on the field, folks,” the announcer says. Lily and Ophelia fly away from each other.
It takes all they have in order to keep hold of Defense. Lily can spot flashes of gold on the pitch, but so can both the Seeker’s. They are neck in neck, racing around the pitch, but out of nowhere a beater hits a Bludger and it goes flying. Before the Slytherin Beaters can hit it away, it raced toward Damon. The Bludger knocked him just so that it allowed Ravenclaw’s keeper to grasp the Snitch.
Lily clutched her broom tightly as the announcer shouted and Ravenclaw’s stormed the field. She allowed herself to float onto the ground, Damon gestured to them and they went to the locker room. Jordi tore off his pads and flung them to the ground. Ophelia’s lips were curled into a grimace as she perched on a bench. Scorpius had his hands curled into fists as he leaned against the lockers.
“Ravenclaw is a tough team and probably one of the most experienced ones besides Gryffindor. That’s not an excuse, though. I’ve seen you all at practice and you can do better.” He turned to Lily. “What the hell were doing out there?”
“I was trying to get her to run a strong defense so we could get possession back…”
“Don’t. You listen to whatever Ophelia or I tell you to do. This is a team sport, we can’t have any rogues out there. Understood?”
“Good. Because we have reserve players that want to play.”
She swallowed harshly and left the room to the other side to get changed. She left the Quidditch uniform there and slipped on the oversized sweater and leggings, and then put on a pair of trainers she left in there. Ophelia left to the Common Room, probably not making an appearance until she got a proper shower. The boys had filtered out, or rather Damon had kicked Jordi out because he didn’t want him damaging the lockers.
“Score, you in here?” she questioned. He was sitting on the bench, his hands braced on his knees. “Are you alright?”
She sat beside him and didn’t say a word. “I know I did terrible, but you were good.”
“Do you see how many times I let them score?” he questioned. “And you aren’t terrible. Damon should know that you don’t take direction well by now.”
Scorpius raised an eyebrow, letting her know that he was not in any way believing her. Listening, or even sitting still, were not either of Lily’s strong suits. “I guess.” She bit her lip. “So, this is a bit off topic...but do you know Julian Corner?”
“Yes, but why?”
“Albus has been with him quite a bit.”
“Has it ever occured to you that Albus wants to be like you?”
“You’re able to distinguish yourself from your family, but Albus is always around them. Most of his friends are related to him in some way. Julian is probably one of the few friends that isn’t connected to the Potter’s or Weasley’s.”
“He has you.”
Scorpius shook his head, and Lily wanted to know what was crossing his mind. “But I’m your friend too.”
“You have a point.” She slipped an arm around his shoulder for an awkward side hug before getting to her feet. “We better get back to the Common Room, I don’t want to get the fraternization talk again from Wolfe.”
Scorpius let Lily lead him back to the castle and then to the dungeon, but as he made their way back he caught a glimpse of Albus and the Ravenclaw boy. The former had his head tipped back with laughter, happiness seemed to exude from him. For a moment he wished he could feel that sort of joy, but then Lily turned around to look at him and roll her eyes. She reached for his hand and tugged him forward, her kind face distracting him.
Winter seemed to be rushing in. With that came the stress from the teachers pressuring them to buckle down before Winter Holiday. However, something that most looked forward to was Hogsmeade weekend.
This excitement was why her and Scorpius were in the dining hall at seven in the morning on a Saturday. Lily brought her extra clothing with her, scarf and warm cloak in a pile on the bench beside her with a Divinations book splayed open in front of her. She had a muggle tool poised in front of it, something that still puzzled Scorpius. Lily called it a ‘high lighter’. It was an objec that her aunt Hermione gave her.
“What are you looking at now?” he questioned.
“It’s about the history of seers.” She looks up at him through her eyelashes before setting down the utensil. “Something bothering you Score?” They’ve been sitting at the table for a good forty minutes by now and hardly anyone is there. Scorpius has been silent the whole time, pushing his food around his plate which is less than his usual meager amount.
“No,” he says a little too quickly as he looks around.
“Well, I want you’re normal charming self back. Today is my first day at Hogsmeade.”
He raises an eyebrow at that. “You’ve been there before, you’re family always visits Professor Longbottom during the summer.”
“He lives in london,” she corrected. “Hush.”
“Well, all the third years leave early. I’ll meet up with you later at the Three Broomsticks.”
Lily made a face at that and then glanced over at the Gryffindor table where her family congregated in a noisy mob. They always met there, the entire Potter-Weasley clan with Grace Longbottom, Lorcan and Lysander.
“Perhaps you should spend some time with them. The last thing I need is the reputation as the boy who holds their darling baby cousin hostage.”
She rolled her eyes at that. “Rose and James already hate you, but Al thinks you’re the greatest.”
“I doubt that,” he murmured, his eyes trailing over to the messy haired Gryffindor that was trying to escape from the loud congregation. Lily started to pack up her things, putting them away when two of the members broke free to come to Slytherin. “Looks like we have visitors.”
“Louis, Hugo,” she greeted.
“Want to head to the courtyard?” Louis asked.
Before Lily got a chance to answer she felt her shoulder being grabbed from behind her. The big grin of Jordan came into view along with Terrance Nott. “Popular today, aren’t we?”
“I’ll see you two later,” she said to her family that was across the table. Hugo’s large smile faltered, but Louis didn’t let his disappointment show.Veela blood seemed prominent in him even though he was a boy and had very little. His blue eyes shown with the same confidence, blond hair neatly arrange as he whipped his head and walked out of the room. Hugo stumbled after him, looking like a puppy that had been kicked.
Next to Lily, Scorpius bit his tongue, holding back a retort. How could she not notice them? She passed him a smile, brushed his shoulder with her hand and began to bundle up, twining a silver and green scarf around her neck before placing a dark green hat on her head. Despite her red hair she looked every bit a Slytherin. While she thought it was easier to deny her name, thinking that if she ignored it, people would detach his identity, Scorpius knew all too well how dangerous that was.
He heard the clock chime one. Right now he should be heading to Herbology with the rest of the Slytherins and Gryffindor. He has no interest in it though. Slughorn lets a lot slide, as long as he doesn’t skip Dark Arts or Potions he’ll be fine. Currently, he needs to focus on getting the blood out of his shirt and clean his face.
“I’ll meet you there.”
Scorpius recognizes the boy and stifled a groan, Albus Potter. Luckily he has avoided the boy so far this year, all he knows of him is his brother. James Potter is said to be the incarnation of his grandfather, his is arrogant, quick-witted, impulsive and rather malicious.
“Are you alright?”
Those are the next words he here. From the mirror he can see him, his wand tucked safely away. Honestly he doesn’t even look threatening with his shaggy hair, glasses sliding down his nose and rumbled uniform. “What happened, mate?”
“I’m not your mate,” he muttered.
“Yeah, you’re a Malfoy,” he retorted.
“It’s not like I want to be,” he said. Still scrubbing at his shirt. His eyes stung, felt like tears were going to start falling soon. Be in control of your emotions, he recalled his mother telling him.
“Do you want some help?”
“I’m fine, Potter.”
“Blood doesn’t bother me and I know a good spell.” He leaned against the sink beside Scorpius taking him in.
“Can’t you just leave me alone? If you’re brother…”
“My brother and I are different people, he doesn’t control my actions.” Albus takes a deep breath. “You don’t have to let blood or names define you. It’s silly to try to be prideful or ashamed of them.”
“Thank you for that lesson,” he muttered and turned off the water. His shirt was now damp and tinged with a large pink stain. “Everyone else cares about it, so it’s not like it’ll make any difference one way or another.”
“What do you think happened to me? It’s not like I fell down the staircase, I got this just because I’m Malfoy’s son. He’s in my house and he told me to ‘start acting like it’ because I didn’t agree with him about a muggleborn.”
Albus stood quiet for a bit, but then pulled out his wand. Before Scorpius could react he was murmuring spells, the first one lifted the blood away and the next help him dry his shirt.
“Thanks did your dad teach you that?”
“My mum, she uses magic for everything. My dad wants us to learn the muggle way too.” Albus put his wand away. “You may not believe me, but it’s hard being Harry Potter’s son.”
“Yeah, son of the man who saved the wizarding world.”
“I’m not my father, just like you aren’t yours. But like I said earlier, you can’t be ashamed of your name. You have to live with it and change people’s perceptions of it. Show them that Slytherin’s aren’t a bunch of pretentious, purebloods.”
Scorpius just laughed and picked his bag up. “Is that what you’re trying to do? Show the world you’re not a wizard who chooses brawn over brains?”
“Exactly,” Albus said. “You know, you’re aren’t so bad, Malfoy.”
Lily pulled her jacket tighter around her as she nestled her chin in her scarf. She left Jordi and Nott at her Uncle’s joke shop and was making her way towards the Three Broomsticks. Her family spent quite a bit of time at Hogsmeade in the summer, so she knew the short cuts. One involved cutting through an alleyway, she hated this one, mostly because she heard James boasting to Fred how he had snogged a girl down there.
It honestly was no surprise when Lily turned down their that she saw a couple a kissing. They were propped against a wall...She was shocked when she saw them, they were two Hogwarts boys given to how they were dressed. The one against the wall looked familiar, with his dark hair and shorter stature....Albus?
Lily grimaced a little remembering when she accidently walked in on Teddy and Victoire last summer. At least both of them were fully clothed currently. She stumbled backwards, but not before one of them caught notice. It was Julian Corner.
“Al, you said…” He began to walk away from Albus, using the back of his hand to wipe at his mouth.
“Jay…” Albus looked at his sister with wide eyes.
Lily bit her lip and looked at her feet before up at him. She felt frozen to the spot as he gave her one last glance before going after Julian. After a few moments she turned around and wandered to the pub. The warmth hit her as soon as she opened the door, so did a wave of noise. She scanned the room before she saw Scorpius talking with a group of older students at the counter. At the other side she saw her family. Roxanne and Dominique sat next to one another, talking furiously. Louis, Hugo, Molly, Grace Longbottom, and Lucy were playing some sort of card game. Rose had a look of disapproval on her face as Fred, George, Lorcan, and Lysander were trying to catch peanuts that they threw at each other.
When Lily stepped in, she saw Scorpius excusing himself to come over. He beamed at her, looking happier than he had in a while. “Do you want to get a butterbeer?” he questioned. “We can sit at the counter with everyone else or grab a table.”
Lily didn’t answer straight away, but loosened the scarf around her neck.
“Are you alright?” he asked, then leaned in closer. “You look like you had--”
“No, no...I just got...sidetracked on the way over here and...just forget it.” She wrapped her arms around herself and let her eyes drift over to where her family sat. Albus was, of course, missing.
“You’re not very good at lying.”
“Nothing, I just...stumbled on something and feel horrid for disrupting it. It’s silly, really.”
“Alright, then let’s--”
“No. I’m going to go to Honeyduke’s and then head back to the castle.”
“They have carriages coming because of the weather, you know that.”
“Yeah…” At that she turned to walk out of the Three Broomstick’s entering the cold again. She started walking faster, not even turning when she heard Scorpius behind her. He placed a hand on her shoulder to stop her and she spun around, their faces a short distance from each other.
“Fine…” She sighed. “I saw Albus kissing someone.”
“Is that it?”
“They were in the alleyway that most couples use for snogging according to James.”
“He’s my brother and…” She bit her lips and kicked at the ground. “I was a little surprised at who was kissing him.”
“Oh? What do you mean ‘oh’?” She looked him over, puzzled by the flash of recognition that went across his face.
“I just assumed...I know Albus doesn’t like to talk about, but him and Julian have been--”
“You knew about them?” Her eyebrows nearly shot up to her hairline. “And you didn’t tell me.”
“When is the last time you even talked to your family?” he demanded to know. “Two of them came to the table this morning and you just--”
“I don’t need you lecturing me.”
Scorpius held up his hands in surrender, but didn’t say a word. Lily looked at him and then took a step back. “Albus probably hasn’t told anyone, the only reason I know is because he’s like some lovesick puppy. You should see his notes…” Scorpius let out a laugh.
“I’m heading back to the castle,” she replied stiffly. As her footsteps created a staccato drum beat in her head, a part of her wished that Scorpius would follow. That he would go after like Albus went after Julian, but that wasn’t how he was. He’d give her space, not bring up the argument again unless it seemed to be bothering her, and all would be forgiven. Except it wouldn’t. Guilt would still coil in her stomach for being a terrible sister and cousin. She would still be frustrated at herself for being forever caught in between needing someone and not wanting to accept their help until she reached her breaking point. Today was supposed to be a fun, perfectly ordinary day and now it was ruined. She couldn’t even puzzle together why it had ended like this. Sure, she now had a picture ingrained in her mind of her brother snogging (an image she thought no sister should ever have of her brother), but it was also the face Louis and Hugo.With a sigh, Lily trudged back to the castle, determined to try to fix things. Maybe not today, but certainly she’d do something by tomorrow.