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19 May 2008 @ 01:54 pm
HP fic: Three Steps Back  
HP fic: Three Steps Back
This part: 4,794 words, R, ships at war
a/n: That was a long hiatus. (Never let it be said that I don't state the obvious. With style.) Quite a few people wished it wasn't quite so long, rendering me quite surprised. Still, we're here now. It makes me think of some old maxim - oh, how does it go? Be careful what you wish for...?
Previous parts here.



Watch out for love
(unless it is true,
and every part of you says yes including the toes),
it will wrap you up like a mummy,
and your scream won't be heard
and none of your running will end.

(Anne Sexton)

Over the past week and a half, Albus had become a rapid-fire expert on not catching his own eye in the mirror. It wasn't that he was afraid of what he might see - not exactly. After all, the prospect couldn't be worse than the one he'd examined every day for the last three years or so. His emotion was closer to hope, stretched midway between anxiety and throat-crushing desire. A nice, simple jolt of fear would be vastly preferable.

Albus made a bargain with himself. The Big Reveal - his mind's eye insisted on the capitals - would take place the night of Victoire's engagement party. Either way, he'd face up to the reality of his face, be it changed or unchanged. And not a minute before. He'd even taken to avoiding spoons in case he should catch sight of his face in them, and keeping his eyes fixed on the ground wherever he walked.

The week leading up to Halloween was an ideal one in which to hide a secret. Mum and Dad lamented the commercialisation and Muggleisation of the celebration, which was certainly of epic proportions. Albus could vaguely remember when Halloween simply meant a few carved pumpkins on the mantlepiece and an extra-special chicken dinner the night before. But he quite liked Halloween the way it was now, replete with pranks, gift exchanges, lugubrious decorations and a distressing predominance of the colour orange.

Any other week, the fact that Albus looked and acted a little differently from usual might have been remarked upon. Now, only Titania noticed; and briefly, at that. Her commentary on the situation consisted of announcing: 'You've been squinting a lot recently - do you think you need specs?' Norma and Rambo were fixated on the Halloween edition of Crosswords for Crazies, which promised to be the most challenging yet. The only way to gain their absolute and undivided attention was to speak in cryptic clues - which was a lot harder to do than simply yelling or hitting them with a wand till they listened, as Albus soon discovered.

As for Scorpius, he was off in dreamworld, when he wasn't off in the real world too. Outside of class, Albus saw Scorpius perhaps about once a week, and then only briefly. He claimed prefect duties ate up his time. Albus gave him the benefit of the doubt, despite the fact that Conan seemed to have hours to spare for Chess Club and lounging around with chocolates and comics. Still, Albus could easily believe prefecting in Slytherin to be a more onerous task than in Hufflepuff, where the main rule infraction was midnight feasting.

The school emptied out in the days leading up to the Halloween weekend. Headmaster Longbottom had long since yielded to the inevitable and scheduled lightly during this week. Many students had huge family functions or feasts to attend, or formed part of the retinue attending the grand Ministry Halloween Ball. It was being held in the Millenium Dome this year, which was ostensibly 'closed for repairs' to the Muggles. For the half of the school remaining behind, there were the usual festivities. Headmaster Longbottom was reported to have hired the Skeleton Key Choir to play, which was the only thing Albus didn't slightly regret missing. He wasn't a fan of the Skeletons, although if Hexed were performing he would have braved even Aunt Fleur's wrath to stay behind and see them.

Albus also had the dubious consolation of Scorpius' company at the blessed event. In truth, Albus intended to rely far more on Marie-Jeanette to keep him entertained.

The Malfoys had minor social cachet through Mrs Malfoy in general and, for this party, her friendship with Albus' mother in particular. Scorpius had already said his father wouldn't attend. This Albus could only consider to be a good thing. Even leaving aside the murky history Mr Malfoy had with practically every one of Albus' relations, his very presence tended to be a dampener at most gatherings. Scorpius inherited his penchant for gloominess, along with his razor-blade nose and cottony hair.

As the day of reckoning approached, Albus' stomach twisted itself up in knots. At first he could ignore them, but they became so tight and so numerous that the only time he got any relief was the brief moments before he woke fully in the mornings. It got so the Big Reveal would be a relief, even if it turned out to Reveal nothing.

Class on Friday was a joke. Professor Redding assigned the few remaining students to cut up herbs for pinch-drying. Albus listlessly plied his knife. Norma and Rambo were having a grand old time, snipping their fennel into strips to make crossword boxes and the sage leaves into letters. Albus had no doubt they'd cover the whole desk with their game before Professor Redding clued in.

He almost wished he could join them - several tables had already amalgamated to 'work together' - but he'd tried and failed to divine the attraction of crosswords. He didn't have a large enough vocabulary to make it worthwhile and the clues irritated him. Titania had done the same to no effect; they both confessed to feeling rather left out by the others' bonding. But Titania wasn't in this class and Scorpius was god knew where, so Albus was all alone.

He put up a hand to brush hair out of his eyes, for he was bent low with boredom and it needed a cut. His heart tensed as his fingers momentarily touched soft, dry skin. Perhaps that meant - surely that meant -

Before Albus' now-stricken heart could start racing, Scorpius sauntered into the room a good half-hour late, and distracted him.

Scorpius apologised to Professor Redding without a discernable lack of sincerity. She waved it off, her eyes never lifting from the heavy book of lore perched in her lap. When Scorpius reached the desk he shared with Albus, the first thing he said was, "She's got a copy of Wicked Wizards tucked behind the worthy tome. I never knew men could bend like that."

Albus' cheeks flushed. "Are you serious?"

"If I was making it up, I'd have said it was a cookery magazine," said Scorpius. "That would be far more damaging to her reputation, believe me."

"I suppose the teachers are just as distracted as us," said Albus thoughtfully.

"It's a distracting time." Scorpius laced his fingers behind his head and stretched. The gesture gave Albus ample time to appreciate how rumpled was Scorpius' robe and hair, and the fact that he was missing three buttons. Scorpius caught Albus' appraising gaze and raised his eyebrows.

"Did you get in a fight or something?" demanded Albus. "I thought you were over all that."

Scorpius had gone through a period in fourth year where he landed detention every day for fist-fighting. Albus deplored the situation, uselessly, until he discovered that challenging Scorpius to broom-races worked off his excess energy just as well. Albus still disliked flying intensely, but he refused to be conquered by it; those endless hours in the air had certainly helped familiarity breed contempt.

He was forcibly reminded of that time by the fierce, unfocused look in Scorpius' eyes. Back then, Scorpius had often said, "If only I could give you some of this - this madness floating inside of me. It'd light you up; it just sets me on fire." Albus had been particularly unwell that year; visited St Mungo's for extensive periods five or six times. He'd slept a lot. Most of his memories involved being shaken awake by people - usually Scorpius - at regular intervals. Just after that was when Healer Bilharzia came on the scene.

"No, I wasn't in a fight." Scorpius' lips quirked. "Don't worry, Mother Albus."

"I'm not," Albus shot back. "I just don't want to explain to your mother why you're in detention instead of attending Victoire's party."

"You'd love any excuse to talk to my mother, don't lie," said Scorpius. Albus scowled and turned a shoulder on him, hunching over his diced St Anne's Lace. Sometimes Scorpius was insufferable.

"Aw, don't get huffy," said Scorpius. He leaned his chin on Albus' shoulder, rendering chopping rather difficult. "Admit it, you'd rather be in detention than at this party too."

"I'm looking forward to seeing Mum and everyone," protested Albus, a little too vehemently.

"Yeah," said Scorpius. "And the soggy canapés and soggy handshakes and soggy comments about how you've grown and what you've learned lately and probably some about ugly ducklings and swans? Looking forward to those, too?"

Albus pressed his lips together. For a fleeting moment he thought of the skin under his fingers when he'd touched his forehead. Tomorrow, his mind whispered.

"Not everything's perfect all the time," he said. He shrugged Scorpius off his shoulder and handed him a knife. "You do the rest."

"Yes ma'am," said Scorpius gaily. Albus ignored him. Sometimes it was the only way.

+++

During Potions, Albus arranged to meet Scorpius in the Entrance Hall at six on Saturday evening. This turned out to be a fortuitous move, for he didn't see his friend again all day. Scorpius didn't turn up for any meals, never once visited the Clubhouse, and the Slytherin team practicing on the Quidditch Pitch claimed he was a no-show.

"And tell him from me," said the captain, Barney Louche, "that if he doesn't come to the next one, he's off the team. If you can find him, that is," he added, to guffaws from his assembled teammates.

"Okay," said Albus and, because politeness was the cement-mixer of life, "thanks."

"He's an okay kid, that one," he heard Barney say as he walked away. "Not like his poncy brother."

"What about the sister?" said someone else. "Total nut-job. She talks to animals. Dead ones."

"Comes of the fame, dunnit," said Barney. "You're gonna be messed up with parents like his."

Albus' mental ocean seethed between outrage and shame as he made his way up to the castle, pausing every so often to catch his breath. He got breathless more frequently lately, but he was trying to ignore it.

Spurred to a rush of familial feeling by Barney's derogatory comments, Albus searched the sparse crowds for his siblings at lunchtime. But neither was to be seen. It was unlike James to miss a feed, but he was probably already primping himself for the night ahead. Albus had never met a vainer boy than his brother. As for Lily, it was more remarkable to see her at mealtimes than not, as she usually took sandwiches to deserted classrooms and ate them there. Albus joined her sometimes, more so he could reassure his parents that she was still alive than for her scintillating conversation.

At five o'clock Albus left the Clubhouse, burdened down with toy bats from crackers, a homemade mobile created by Titania from remnants of the Daily Prophet, and a crossword Norma and Rambo had devised themselves. 'It's bound to be far harder than anything you'd buy in a shop!" said Norma, as if this were something to be proud of. Their creations fell a little flat without Scorpius' genius to enliven them, but the last two months had taught all four not to expect much of Scorpius any longer.

Conan was the only one present in the dorm when Albus arrived, puffing. Eoghan had gone home for the Tralee Halloween festival two days before, leaving behind him a lighter atmosphere and a far more relaxed Conan. Conan currently lay on his bed in a shirt and boxer shorts, something he wouldn't dare do when Eoghan was around. Apparently, a gay man's bare legs made homosexuality catching.

Conan looked up as Albus entered and garbled out, "Happy Halloween!"

"Happy Halloween," said Albus. He dumped his stash on his bed.

Conan swallowed his chocolate and said, "I'd give you some of my booty, but you'd probably come out in hives."

"It's a hazard of being me," agreed Albus. "Thanks for the not-offer, though."

"Presents?" asked Conan. When Albus nodded, Conan slid off his bed and came over to inspect them. "Ha, I think I detect Titania's handiwork here." He prodded the mobile.

"They're about the only thing she knows how to make, and she was dirt broke this year," said Albus. "I can add it to my collection as the 'environmentally friendly' piece."

"It's a cool custom," said Conan, sounding wistful.

"Scorpius' idea, of course," said Albus. "Mainly because his allowance was stopped in second year for some reason or other." He was about to mention Scorpius' non-appearance this year, but loyalty prevented him. Into the sudden pool of silence, he blurted, "Maybe you could join in next year."

"Really?" Conan's smile flickered briefly before dying. "It's sweet of you to suggest it, but Scorpius would die a thousand deaths first."

Albus squirmed. "He's not - he hasn't said anything else, has he?"

"Other than how I'm an unnatural freak of nature?" said Conan dryly. "No. And don't think I can't see your hand in that. But even you can't stop him sending hateful looks my way every time he sees me. Honestly, these boys. I don't know who Scorpius Malfoy thinks he's fooling."

"What do you mean?" asked Albus, alert to the change in tone that accompanied Conan's last sentence.

"Oh - they're just so angry at me," said Conan. "It's not like I ever did anything to them personally, but my choice of partner seems to have a deep and significant impact on their lives. It's crazy."

"I suppose it was a pity you had to tell everyone now," said Albus. "People tend to get more tolerant as they get older. At least, my dad stopped wanting to kill Scorpius' dad a few decades back. Now they just utterly detest each other."

"I don't want to live a lie," said Conan.

"I think everyone lives a lie, in some way or another." Albus sighed a little, but not so Conan could hear. "Anyway, I've got to get ready now. My cousin Victoire's engagement party is tonight in the Starview Lounge."

"Ooh, very fancy," said Conan. "Make sure you get one of those famous cocktails."

"Of course," said Albus. "It's not like I'm underage or prohibited from alcohol or anything like that."

"Oops, forgot again." Conan made a face.

"Don't worry, everyone does," said Albus. "And Scorpius will sneak enough drink for the both of us, never fear."

He grinned at Conan as he stepped away from the shadow of his bed, right into the path of the rising moon. Conan gasped.

"Albus!" he said, in awed tones.

"What? I'm not bleeding, am I?" The spontaneous nosebleeds were a less than dignified portion of Albus' memories.

"No, you're -" Conan stepped forward, hand out. Albus thought he would touch his face, but instead Conan's hand dropped to his shoulder and propelled him into the bathroom. "Look."

Albus looked.

+++

Wonder of wonders: Scorpius was ready and waiting for him when Albus finally emerged into the Entrance Hall. He'd taken a shortcut through a maze of tapestries, so he took a minute to zap off the dust before confronting Scorpius.

Scorpius was swathed in deep blue velvet with white edgings. He'd taken the time to comb out his hair so it swung around his face in shining curtains, but the expression on his face was anything but attractive. His brow was creased and one fingernail was restlessly tapping the fob that hung from his waistcoat.

"You're late," he snapped, striding forward to pull Albus out of the tapestry. "And what are you doing, hovering in there like a demented gryphon?"

"It's dusty," said Albus. Scorpius didn't give him time to explain further, instead checking his watch with an impatient flick of the wrist. A new wristlet adorned it, nestling between the watch and the old friendship bracelet Albus had inexpertly woven for him in first year.

"Halloween prize?" asked Albus, his eyes on the wristlet. It was sturdy black leather strung with carved and burned chunks of bone. Mermaid, Albus guessed, from the opalescent sheen. It was both a highly prized and gruesome relic.

His question must have come out sharper than intended, for Scorpius' eyes winked black.

"What's it to you?" he asked.

Albus shrugged. "Not a thing." He wanted to leave it at that - to preserve a shred of dignity. But he couldn't help himself. "Of course, it's always nice to be remembered by your friends on Halloween."

"No need to be so subtle," snarled Scorpius. He thrust a hand into his pocket and pulled out a box, which he threw at Albus. Albus missed the catch and the box hit the floor, with a distressing tinkle of breakage.

"I'm sorry I was busy," said Scorpius. "I'm sorry I have a life, one not involving puzzles and food and - anyway. But I didn't forget."

"Go on," said Albus. "Say it. Not involving annoying sick people."

"I wasn't going to say that! I never say that!"

"Yeah. I think that's the problem." Albus crouched down to pick up the box. The lid had popped off and the interior showed the ruins of crystal and jade, lying in shattered chunks on the satin lining.

Albus' hood - put up to guard against cobwebs and worse on the shortcut passage - slipped back as he stood. He met Scorpius' gaze, intending to ask what the present had been and, maybe, to offer an apology.

What he saw in Scorpius' face dissolved the words on his tongue. There was a mixture of understandable surprise and mystifying horror. Albus went to touch his cheek, thinking that he and Conan had got it wrong; that the light or the mirror had played a trick. But Scorpius was faster. Both his palms clamped around Albus' head, painfully tight. Albus' back was against the stone wall in seconds as Scorpius leaned in, hard thumbs ripping down his cheekbones as if to peel off a mask.

"What happened?" Scorpius whispered, choking on the words. "Oh holy Merlin, what have you done?"

"What?" Rage rendered Albus suddenly strong. He wrenched himself out of Scorpius' grip, so fast he was sure he lost a layer of skin. "What are you talking about, you idiot?"

"Your face." If it hadn't been so awful, Scorpius' tones of direst tragedy would have been comical. "It's all wrong. What did you do to it?"

"Stop being stupid! It's not wrong, it's right - finally. I thought you of all people would be happy. Weren't you sick of hanging around with an ugly git for a best mate? I assumed that's why we never see you anymore."

"Hey, that's not - it's not what you think. It's not you." Scorpius' pale skin always looked ugly when he blushed, in blotches instead of all over like a normal person. "But this - is it a spell? Can you reverse it?"

"No!" shouted Albus. "It's a bloody potion and it works, why would I want to reverse it?"

"You're beautiful," said Conan.

"Don't be silly," said Albus. He talked to Conan's reflection, still too entranced to tear his eyes away from the mirror. "I'm a boy."

"But it's true," insisted Conan. "It's not even a line, because if I hit on you Scorpius would eat my face."

"And I'm straight," Albus pointed out.

"Yeah," said Conan. "But look. It's like you, only -"

"Better?" suggested Albus. Conan grinned.

The effect was ... magical. It was the only way to describe it. A month ago, when Albus first started using Bilharzia's highly experimental potion, he thought he could see changes develop here and there. His limbs felt stronger. The weight-lifting exercises he did to combat the calcium-drain from his treatments finally took hold in his muscles, shaping and tautening them. He thought the chapped look went from his face; that his hair was less lank and dead-looking. But these things might all have been chance, might all have been imagination.

"The last week," Bilharzia promised. "According to the skin cycle. With the enchantments and the properties of the potion, it will all come together on the twenty-eighth day. Then you will see miracles!" And, because she was at heart an honest women, she finished with, "Hopefully."

The spots were gone. The spots were gone. The spots were gone.

In their place, Albus had smooth, pale skin. James was tanned, but James hadn't gone for years with a protective layer of acne between him and the sun. Albus' cheekbones were sharper than he remembered, his mouth fuller, his eyebrows darker. His hair shone.

"You're hotter than James now," said Conan. "I say this with complete objectivity."

Albus just grinned harder, and didn't object when Conan squeezed his shoulders a second longer than he should have.

He'd finally won.


He'd finally won, and Scorpius was trying to take it all away from him.

"I don't understand." Albus looked at Scorpius in bewilderment. "I thought you'd be happy for me."

Scorpius just stared at him for a long, long moment. When he spoke, it was in the voice of a stranger.

"We'd better get going," he said. "We're already late."

+++

Albus huddled in a corner with Marie-Jeanette, grimacing at Scorpius' back.

"No, do not do that!" begged Marie-Jeannette. "Your face is smooth now, it is a pity to crinkle it up so."

"I can't help it," Albus ground out. Every time he caught a glimpse of Scorpius, looking carefree and distracted as usual, Albus' heart began to tattoo his anger on his ribcage. "I just can't believe he's being so horrible to me."

"He's jealous," said Marie-Jeanette, for perhaps the twelfth time. For once, Albus didn't bother with the scathing retort that Scorpius was ten times better-looking than Albus without even trying. Marie-Jeanette grew up being compared to a stunning model who was so insecure about her looks, she lived off carrot sticks and bottled water. Maybe she knew what she was talking about.

"Pray, pray," said Marie-Jeanette a minute later, "do not remain in this sulk all night. This is your moment to shine. In a few days everyone will forget you were not always this handsome. You should make the most of your transformation."

"And do what?" asked Albus. "Score some extra chewed-up cows' hooves?" Scorpius was right about the canapés, of course.

"There is a pretty girl over there who has been scowling at me for the past twenty minutes," Marie-Jeanette informed him. "Go, chat her up!"

"She's probably related to me," said Albus.

All the same, he obeyed his cousin. Marie-Jeanette might look like a cross between Aunt Hermione and an owl, but there were times when she demonstrated just how much tempestuousness she'd inherited from her mother.

On his way across the room, Albus bumped into his Uncle Bill. Uncle Bill was not as happily reconciled to his eldest daughter's impending nuptials as his wife, so he was slowly but surely getting very drunk indeed.

"Al!" he cried. "Look at you, all dolled up and nowhere to go. Could you get some of that potion for my face, do you think?"

"Do you have acne?" asked Albus, rather confused. "I'm afraid it only works on that."

"Pity," said Uncle Bill. "Scar-removal cream, that's what I need." He went off into a gall of hiccupy laughter at this witticism. Albus blinked politely. Uncle Bill had a few pale scars across his face, but they'd always been there. Albus thought he'd look stranger without them.

And then it hit him why Scorpius was in such a foul mood.

Turning on his heel, in the opposite direction from the disappointed probably-relative, Albus headed in the direction of the bar. He'd last spotted Scorpius going that way (for the fourth time). He passed Lily, contentedly reading a book on dissection under a palm tree. He saw the swish of Scorpius' white-edged robes disappearing through the balcony door and sped up, only to be accosted by Rose.

"What?" he snapped. Dealing with Rose was not something he relished at the best of times, which this wasn't. He barely noted the fact that she looked wan under her sloppily applied makeup. Rose, with less than perfect mascara? wondered a part of Albus' brain, while the rest screamed Go Away, Rose!

"Can I talk to you for a minute?" muttered Rose. Her pouty lower lip was chapped and flaking. Albus' used to be like that.

Albus wasn't in the mood for yet another rhapsody over his miraculous make-over. He quickly tired of the sentiment that he was now worth something because his face no longer looked like road kill. Rose, as the grand mistress of the superficial school of thought, could only be more tiresome than the rest.

"It'll have to wait," he said. "I kind of need to find Scorpius right now."

"Oh, really?" Rose's face jerked. She usually donned a supercilious expression whenever Scorpius was mentioned, but if Albus didn't know better, he'd say that right now she looked scared.

"I don't suppose you've seen him?" asked Albus. He didn't expect a reply, and was gone before Rose finished shaking her head.

The air outside promised snow come morning, chasing all but the hardiest to the warmth of the inner banqueting room. It was a pity, for the balcony provided a spectacular view, both of the dank glitter of London and the stars above. Mother-of-pearl telescopes were set up at intervals along the parapet for those who desired a more intimate view of the heavens.

Mrs Malfoy informed him, a little tipsily, that she'd seen Scorpius go up to the viewing deck. According to the promotional literature, this was a glass bubble that allowed one to focus in on the solar system of their choice at the flick of a wand. What Scorpius wanted there - having no interest in astronomy and no legal right to use magic - Albus had no idea. A quiet place to drink and sulk, probably.

Or, as it turned out, a quiet place to drink and be sucked off.

+++

Albus stumbled back down the stairwell, much too shocked to be discreet. Behind him, he could hear soft curses and the rustle of clothing hastily pulled shut.

"No, wait here!" Scorpius said sharply. The voices fell into murmuring again as Albus sank against the stone wall. His breath whistled in and out of his lungs, bringing searing pain with every gulp.

He listened to Scorpius' cat-light tread on the stairs as he tried to breathe normally. Scorpius came to a halt just behind him and crossed his arms.

"Well?" he said, and Albus could have forgiven everything but that flippant tone. "I presume you have something to say to me. C'mon, out with it."

Albus turned his face, yet too weak to lift it properly. The back of his head scraped against the wall. He stared at Scorpius and Scorpius stared back, the epitome of supreme unconcern.

He hadn't looked like that with his dick in someone's mouth, shoving it in hard and deep. His face in that one moment bore more expression - outside disdainful amusement - than Albus had seen in months.

The embarrassment of catching Scorpius mid-blowjob and the callous disrespect Scorpius showed by engaging in such activities at a family party, where his own little sister and numerous children were running free; neither were beyond Albus' powers of coping. Only one thing was beyond them, and it was: when Scorpius shifted, moaning, the hand he had clenched in the other person's hair rose enough to show a rapidly working throat, and an Adam's apple.

"You're a fucking hypocrite," said Albus. He was surprised at how calm it came out: the excitement of the night, added to dashing down three flights of stairs, had drained him considerably.

"I don't know what you think you saw -" began Scorpius.

"I saw enough." Albus closed his eyes. They throbbed. "Enough to know you're just as much of a freak as you claim Conan is. You like boys too, and you hated him for it." He opened his eyes into Scorpius' shocked face. "So. You're a fucking hypocrite."

"Yeah, but at least -"

"Save it." Albus heaved himself upright; took one, shaky step, then another. "Save it forever, Scorpius Malfoy. I never want to talk to you again."

"Wait!" Scorpius grabbed his arm. His wrist prominently displayed the mermaid-bone bracelet. A gift from a boy, Albus supposed. No girl would have such execrable taste. Albus just hoped the blowjobs were worth it.

He didn't say anything, just looked at Scorpius' hand like it was a slug. Eventually, Scorpius dropped it and stepped back.

Albus walked away, and wondered why he still couldn't breathe.

tbc
 
 
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pale pubescent beast: draco malfoy boxers/potterpuffswildestranger on May 19th, 2008 01:15 pm (UTC)
Ooooh, this is getting so exciting. It's James, isn't it, who's giving the blowjob? *ponders*
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: Medieval - seeing someonescoradh on May 19th, 2008 03:32 pm (UTC)
I actually thought people would be killing me with sticks for this. Phew!

:DDD
Christy Corr: Ineffable.christycorr on May 19th, 2008 01:23 pm (UTC)
Ohh, bastard.
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: PATD: er Spencer/Ryanscoradh on May 19th, 2008 03:34 pm (UTC)
Er ... who? Me or Scorpius?
(no subject) - christycorr on May 19th, 2008 08:18 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - scoradh on May 19th, 2008 08:22 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - christycorr on May 19th, 2008 10:57 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - scoradh on May 19th, 2008 11:14 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - christycorr on May 20th, 2008 01:00 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - scoradh on May 20th, 2008 09:40 am (UTC) (Expand)
one minute movie reviewsoneminutemovies on May 19th, 2008 03:29 pm (UTC)
Yay! I hoped you'd be returning to this. Angst it up, boys! We love you.
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: PATD: rockstar teethscoradh on May 19th, 2008 03:36 pm (UTC)
I was always gonna. I just stumbled into concurrent roadblocks: RL and writing myself into a corner.
painless_jpainless_j on May 19th, 2008 03:45 pm (UTC)
Ooh, a new chapter! I think I'll go reread it from chapter one, yum :)
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: PATD: Group hugscoradh on May 19th, 2008 04:01 pm (UTC)
Ugh, I'm never leaving something this long again. I'm so nervous of what people think. If I do so again, feel free to shoot me.
Ebil Oberlady in the makingpervert_bitch on May 19th, 2008 03:57 pm (UTC)
YAY! ANGST! So who it was? The blowjob-giving guy, that is. Damn, it makes me all anxious when these two fight but I still love it, because I am angst whore :P
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: MCR: French pirate Mikeyscoradh on May 19th, 2008 04:02 pm (UTC)
Next chappie, m'dear. Jam tomorrow and all that.

I make a lot of effort never to fight with my friends, because I hate arguments; but it's interesting how often even the best friends could. Especially hormone-ridden teenagers!
kitmarlowescot2kitmarlowescot2 on May 19th, 2008 04:33 pm (UTC)
Hmm....with the way Rose is. Scoripus could be getting it from both sexes. Or he threatened her over James, and to keep his secret. Scoripus did find another way to get rid of that anger. Scoripus might be fire, but Albus is a slow boiler on the anger. I am a little confused what was so bad about the wish coming true ? I don't think we heard what Scoripus wished for, Al I know wished for his teacher to notice him, to be a good healer, and for Scoripus to be happy. Scoripus is a hypocrite, he hated Cormac for admitting what he was. And probably getting jealous over Cormac being anywhere near Albus.
I can also see why Scoripus was so shocked over Albus's skin clearing up. He was use to Al being Al, and know the thought of Al not being their might get to him. On top of Scoripus probably thinking he will never be with Al. If Scoripus has even gotten to that point yet.
I also thinking Scoripus has become the Master (dominatrix if that can be applied to a male) of sex in the older students.
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: PATD: Brendon/Ryan almost kissscoradh on May 19th, 2008 04:37 pm (UTC)
Regardless of how much people dislike the way I've written Rose, I haven't yet made her into a transsexual. :D

Change in appearance always shocks friends; I know this from experience. I think we all watch too many films where the makeover'd girl goes off with the popular people and abandons her 'real friends', and so on.

Yeah, Scorpius is a snotty sixteen year old. Master of sex - or anything - he ain't. :P
(no subject) - kitmarlowescot2 on May 19th, 2008 04:56 pm (UTC) (Expand)
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(no subject) - scoradh on May 19th, 2008 10:54 pm (UTC) (Expand)
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(no subject) - scoradh on May 19th, 2008 11:17 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - nitedula on May 20th, 2008 03:24 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - kitmarlowescot2 on May 20th, 2008 01:15 pm (UTC) (Expand)
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every Starbucks should have a polar bear: FOB: Pete the dinosaurscoradh on May 19th, 2008 04:57 pm (UTC)
Oh darling! Thank god for you. I think I do okay without beta-reading, and then something like this happens. >.>

I hope Rose's mystery will interest people, as everyone seems to have divined my other (lame) ones within seconds. Pshaw.

Multiple boys, hee.

♥!
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sleepingfingers on May 19th, 2008 05:52 pm (UTC)
I practically squee'ed out loud when I saw that you've updated. :D

This chapter was so wonderful that it was totally worth it, all the wait (not that I'd complain if the next chapter comes earlier than 4 months ;)). I can understand Scorpius's reactions to Al's changes, but I couldn't help thinking pettily that he sort of doesn't deserve to be so mad, especially since he practically abandoned Al for other boys. And oh Al.

I kind of really wish it wouldn't be James because then Scorpius would be really really hurting Al, but I'm afraid it is, isn't it?

But I really like the way this is going, and really loved this chapter. :)

Edited at 2008-05-19 05:53 pm (UTC)
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: MCR: pensive Frankiescoradh on May 19th, 2008 05:58 pm (UTC)
But I really like the way this is going, and really loved this chapter

I'm very, very glad to hear that! I so blithely wrote things people got insanely cross over in TRLT and, while it didn't stop me this time, it made me wary of the reaction I might get. So. Yay!

I do hope their reactions are understandable no matter what. That doesn't mean they have to be rational; I make no attempt at that. Humans are by nature irrational. :D

Thank you so much! ♥ While I make no false promises about the next installment, I have great hopes that it will NOT be in four months' time. (It was more like five, actually.)

Edited at 2008-05-19 06:00 pm (UTC)
(no subject) - sleepingfingers on May 19th, 2008 06:10 pm (UTC) (Expand)
_aurora_sky_: respectfully dissenting_aurora_sky_ on May 19th, 2008 06:14 pm (UTC)
Bloody fucking hell it IS James, isn't it?? *moans painfully*

My mind has consistently rejected the idea of James and Scorpius having anything to do with one another, and it isn't until I read other's comments that certain things become painfully clear to me (perhaps it's because, when I read, my mind is ridiculously one-track AS/S). In the last part, James being there after potions, never even OCCURRED to me that he'd been in the closet with Scorp til I read the comments. With this one, Rose popping out... again, James never even crossed my mind. Also, upon reading comments, I guess Rose's "chapped lips" are FAAAAR more telling then I took them to be on first reading. I'm not usually this dense, I swear! I blame "selective reading".

I have a lot of strong words in my head if it IS James Scorpius has been running off to. Foremost (and less offensive) would be traitor. Absolute, utter, traitor. The no-excuses kind. And if I were in Al's position and it WAS James or Rose or Hugo Scorp was with, I wouldn't be able to forgive him, AS/S fic or not. At the VERY least, I expect copious amounts of groveling and Hail Marys' from Scorpius.

I'm extremely pissed at Scorp. Not at you, dear author -- you're delivering the goods and I'm happy for it ^^ -- but my rage is on Scorpius. That little shit.

Thanks SO MUCH for the post!!! :D!!!!!
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: Audrey Hepburnscoradh on May 19th, 2008 06:21 pm (UTC)
Can I say, it's just so fun to see the flip between you raging at something I wrote, and thanking me for writing it? Kind of hilarious, you have to admit! But this fic - including TRLT - has been a goldmine of that sort of reaction. It's been a learning curve for me as well. (Just because everyone hates my Rose doesn't mean everyone hates me, etc.)

As I was never a great plotter, my writing rests on the laurels of human interaction. The way some writers have it, that has only two settings: good and bad. My settings are more like a thermometer: an insanely continuous scale.

Also, thank you! Not just for commenting here, but for your last comment. You can count yourself the muse (ie the one responsible) for this chapter. I started writing it just after reading that comment. So! ♥
(no subject) - _aurora_sky_ on May 19th, 2008 06:40 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - scoradh on May 19th, 2008 06:54 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - _aurora_sky_ on May 19th, 2008 07:42 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - scoradh on May 19th, 2008 07:47 pm (UTC) (Expand)
&helena;uminohikari on May 19th, 2008 07:57 pm (UTC)
asdfjkl; *spazzes*
Scorpius is being annoying :|
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: Blue haired boy w/ phonescoradh on May 19th, 2008 08:03 pm (UTC)
hur, he's an annoying kinda guy! :D
ura_hdura_hd on May 19th, 2008 08:33 pm (UTC)
Oh, poor Albus... Scorpius created such a shock. And he does not completely understand what upset him so much either.

I am happy that Albus' acne problem went away. Poor kid deserves some brightness with his heath.


I am so happy that you are finally updating this story! Please do not take to long on the next chapter.
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: Medieval - seeing someonescoradh on May 19th, 2008 08:57 pm (UTC)
I'm very glad you liked it! And I will do my utmost not to let you guys down again ... I even wrote a snippet this evening.
painless_jpainless_j on May 19th, 2008 10:13 pm (UTC)
OMG, what a chapter! How many more? You can't leave us hanging here for long! Please! OMG.

You know, I nearly cried when the box with the present shattered. What was in there?
painless_jpainless_j on May 19th, 2008 10:19 pm (UTC)
And Albus will forgive the poor, destructive, confused idiot after a while, right? Right? If he sends 20 cards again?
(no subject) - scoradh on May 19th, 2008 11:12 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - scoradh on May 19th, 2008 11:11 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Emo Spicy: U Go Grlemo_spicy on May 19th, 2008 10:34 pm (UTC)
ILU so much.
update tomorrow? pls.
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: CS + TAI: Gabehipsscoradh on May 19th, 2008 11:07 pm (UTC)
ILU2, but no matter how much, I have to study tomorrow. Soz. (I don't enjoy it either, if that's any consolation.)
(no subject) - emo_spicy on May 20th, 2008 01:16 am (UTC) (Expand)
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every Starbucks should have a polar bear: PATD: Ryan looks good in bluescoradh on May 19th, 2008 11:09 pm (UTC)
Oh noes, did that totally wreck your concentration? Sorry!

Hee, thanks. :D
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(no subject) - scoradh on May 19th, 2008 11:15 pm (UTC) (Expand)
freddie_mac: skeets_teh awesomefreddie_mac on May 20th, 2008 01:08 am (UTC)
yayyyy! Glad to see another part of this fic! Wasn't sure who Scorp's mystery man was at first, but it sure sounds like James. Why else would Rose be so upset ("...but if Albus didn't know better, he'd say that right now she looked scared...") and Albus feel like he's been punched ("...wondered why he still couldn't breathe.")? Also explains James hanging around the Potions class room.

Poor Al -- here he's finally won, can finally come out of James' shadow (thanks to the nifty potion), and now this. Not only is this three steps back but also a nifty punch in the gut.

Wonder if Scorp took up w/ James 'cause he'd figured that Al was out of reach?

Waiting for more as your schedule allows
every Starbucks should have a polar bear: ASS: landscape scenescoradh on May 20th, 2008 10:13 am (UTC)
Speculation is to writing as hunger is to food. I will neither confirm nor deny! - just keep tapping away at my open .doc here in the next window.

Hopefully, hopefully soon! Thank you. ♥