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The News

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"Lumos." The tip of Scorpius' wand comes alive as he steps into Jamie's room.

"Don't turn the lights on."

Scorpius finds a candle and lights it, before putting away his wand. He sits in bed, next to Jamie. "Covering your face with your arm doesn't make you invisible." He brushes Jamie's hair. "Would you like to tell me why you're hiding here when there's a party downstairs?"

Jamie snorts. "It's December. There's always a party downstairs."

"Yes, but this is different and you know it. Albus is finally a fully qualified Healer, and despite all of the arguments, he loves you and wants you there to celebrate with him."

Jamie sighs. "I know, but it's probably best if I'm not there. I'm not exactly good company at the moment."

"You're always good company at a party," Scorpius points out, before lying on top of Jamie. He pulls his arm away and stares at his boyfriend. "What is it?"

"My father will kill me." He stops for a moment. "Your father will kill me." He sighs. "You might kill me."

"I'm glad to see that you have more faith in me than in our fathers," Scorpius answers, amused. "Now, why are people committing murder?"

Jamie nods toward the nightstand. Scorpius straddles him as he reaches over and finds a parchment. He lights his wand again and reads the letter from a reporter asking for a comment about a soon-to-be-born illegitimate child. "Is this real?"

Jamie shrugs. "I'm always careful- very, very careful, but I could have been drunk, so I don't know."

"And do you know this woman?" Scorpius asked.

Jamie laughs, but it sounds bitter. "You're not seriously asking me that, right? I don't know the names of half the people I sleep with. Maybe if I saw her, I'd remember her, but the name doesn't ring a bell."

"The good news is that I won't kill you since we've been together for two weeks and this child was conceived almost nine months ago," Scorpius says, putting the letter back. "On the other hand, this will be a shitfest. You need to tell your family before it's printed."

"I know, and the sad thing is that whether it's true or not will be irrelevant for most people. By the time the child is born and we can cast the paternity spells, people will believe that I'm the father." Jamie pulls Scorpius down and hugs him. "I can't even deny it, because I don't know if it's true or not."

"And what if it's true?" Scorpius asks.

"I'm not marrying her, if that was your question." Jamie kisses Scorpius' cheek. "I don't know. I really don't. On the one hand, it would be my child. On the other, I can't even keep a plant alive. I don't want to be a father and I'd be awful at it. Thing is, I can't even think about being a father, because I can't imagine not casting the right spells to make sure that I wouldn't be one, so I might have to go through this for no reason at all."

Scorpius shakes his head. "For all of the rumours kids started in school, I've never been in the papers except for Quidditch. I don't know how you do it when most papers and magazines basically have a Potter section with you as their main star."

"That's because Dad refuses to stay in any picture." Jamie tilts his head, showing his confusion. "You're taking this better than I expected."

"Were you under the impression that I didn't know about all the people you fucked?" Scorpius pressed his lips against Jamie's. "Here's what we'll do. First, we're going downstairs and celebrating Al's accomplishments. Second, in the morning, you'll talk to your parents. If you want me there, I'll be there, although that might involve another discussion. That's up to you."

Jamie smiled. "Well, that's one way to ensure that they won't complain about me dating a Malfoy. They'll have something worse to worry about."

Scorpius snorted. "You're an awful human being, but possibly right on this occasion. So ready to go downstairs?"

Jamie closed his arms around Scorpius. "Let's just stay here for a little bit longer, just a few minutes. I'm the life of the party, right? I need some time to-"

"Pretend that you're happy and everything is great?" Scorpius doesn't need an answer, because he knows he's right. "You need to stop pretending so much. It's just family down there and they love you."

"I know, but- It's hard not to be who they expect me to be. I- Thank you."

Scorpius frowns. "For what?"

"Forcing me to be myself? Not letting me get away with the lies? Throwing the truth in my face? Take your pick."

Scorpius smiles. "It's no hardship, because I like you when you are yourself."

"How do you even know?" Jamie asks. "I'm never myself, not really, not in school, not around the other players, not even at home half the time. How did see past all of the masks?"

Scorpius runs his hand over Jamie's arm. "You're not as good as you think, at least not when you're home or when you don't think people are looking. I just happened to look a lot, and it was easy since I was around at a lot of family affairs, but no one paid attention to the Malfoy kid that Albus brought along. You were all too busy with each other. Sometimes, I could see how hard you worked to look happy, but when people's attention drifted away from you, you'd look so sad and tired."

"You're too insightful for a Slytherin," Jamie murmurs.

"Can we try something?"

Jamie tenses slightly. "Why do I get the feeling that we aren't talking about something sexual?"

"Because you know me better," Scorpius replies. "Let's go downstairs and you don't try to pull any pranks, don't grab all the attention from Albus and don't pretend that you're on cloud nine. Stay with me, talk to your cousins and be there for Albus."

"You want us to be a secret," Jamie points out.

"Fred, Albus and Roxanne know. Do you really think that they haven't dropped hints already? And you said you trust your family, so no need to hide with them, not the relationship and not the fact that you're not at your best at the moment. I'll be by your side all night."

Jamie takes a deep breath. "Brave Gryffindor, right? Let's go before I change my mind."