Pairings: Albus/Scorpius (main pairing), Scorpius/Lily, Lucius/Narcissa, Sirius/Narcissa
Warnings: Highlight to read: [ Character death, suicide]
Word Count: ~5,000
Summary: Scorpius reads his grandmother's old diaries and finds unexpected similarities between their lives.
Notes: Big thanks to S. and L. for the impeccable beta-job and reassuring me when I had doubts about this story. The title is inspired by one of my favourite songs at the moment. crazyparakiss, I actually managed to fit 3 of your desired pairings into the fic and I hope you enjoy this :)
World Behind Our Wall
I am alone. I have nothing left.
I didn't realise it before, probably because the truth was too painful for me to accept. But now I see it and there's no one I can confide in. I may still have beautiful clothes, a luxurious house and all the money I could wish for. But the things that matter have been taken from me.
My husband is gone; locked up in Azkaban for all the crimes he committed. Whether it is fair or not, I do not know. He is guilty of many of the things they accuse him of. But now he is in prison while many other criminals are still out there, so I do not know if it justified.
My son is gone; at Hogwarts to finish his fifth school year. He hates me and seems to think that I am to be held responsible for everything that's happened. Maybe I am. We used to be so close but the coming war has changed everything.
My lover is gone; dead at my sister's wand. I cannot even look at Bellatrix and I try to avoid her whenever I can. Of course she did not know about my affair; it was our little secret and I have never told anyone about it. And I will keep this secret, even after his passing.
I have never needed him more than right now. I have never felt more alone.
I stare at the slightly faded green ink on the yellowish paper and get the distinct feeling that I should not be reading this. My hands shake a little and I can't tear my eyes away from the lines I've just read three times. Finally I manage and look up to meet Lily's equally wide eyes. I open my mouth and try to say something but Lily beats me to it.
"Your grandmother had an affair?" she asks, blinking stupidly as she looks back down at the old diary. Her hands reach out to pull it towards her, but I don't let go. I can't let go. This is the last thing of my grandmother that I have left; a box full of old diaries and letters. Never did I expect to uncover such a secret.
Of course the fact that my grandmother had an affair that probably went on for years is very exciting. But it's not the secret liaison that makes my heart beat faster and captures my attention; it's the loneliness that seems to seep through the paper and right into me. Reading these words, I feel closer to my grandmother than ever before and I finally begin to grasp what he must have felt like.
Narcissa used to be the only person who truly understood me. We had a lot in common, and this diary entry only confirms that. I was never lonely, and until about a month ago, I had everything I could possibly wish for. But I still feel close to my grandmother as I read these words because I used to know someone, love someone who felt this way.
"Who died in 1996?" Lily interrupts my thoughts with her question, leaning over to look at the small notebook to get a better look while my hands tighten on its old bindings. "Probably many people," she mutters before reaching for one of the other diaries in the box and skimming through it.
I watch her rub her chin thoughtfully as she scans the books for the name of my grandmother's lover. "When do you think it started?" she asks me, and I finally find my voice.
"I don't know," I reply softly, skimming through the 1996 diary to help Lily search while I think about something else entirely. I can't help wondering if this was how Albus felt.
"Ha!" Lily suddenly yells and I watch her grin widen. "Check this out."
She hands me the diary and I slide my glasses back on, bend over the book as I read the entry she shows me.
Today something odd yet very exciting happened. We were at the annual Christmas party at my aunt Walburga's, and while Bellatrix was bullying Regulus, I was with Sirius in his room. We were just talking about nothing in particular when Sirius suddenly kissed me. Kissed me. And it wasn't just a cousinly peck on the cheek but a real kiss on the lips!
To say that I was shocked is an understatement. But what shocked me even more was the fact that I actually kissed him back for a moment before pulling away. He is only thirteen years old! And my cousin! I'm not supposed to kiss him, and he's not supposed to kiss me!
So after I pulled away, I asked him why he did that, and he told me that he thinks I'm the most beautiful girl in the world. How is a girl supposed to resist such a compliment, I ask you?
Of course I immediately thought about Lucius. We've been dating for a couple of years now and, I mean, the man has practically asked me to marry him! Of course he hasn't really asked me yet but he's very close to proposing, I know this.
But Sirius... He's so different. Lucius is the perfect Pureblood. He's handsome and polite and powerful and I love him dearly. But Sirius... is Sirius. He's a rebel; the first Black to get sorted into Gryffindor, and while I usually do have problems with people from that house, Sirius is still my favourite cousin.
After his confession, I was so stunned that I let him kiss me again, and we ended up embracing for almost half an hour before Bellatrix announced her presence and I had to pull back.
Now I am confused, dear Diary. What am I supposed to do? I could of course blame it all on the fine Merlot we had with our meal but I do not think that is quite fair because I enjoyed kissing him and am even thinking about doing it again. Yet at the same time, I feel extremely guilty because I am in love with Lucius and plan to marry him.
Is it wrong to have a secret affair with my own (thirteen year old!) cousin? What am I saying – of course it is wrong. But I really think I do not have a choice in this matter. I simply cannot resist Sirius's sweet lips...
"Bloody hell!" Lily exclaims, grinning widely when she sees my face. "It was Sirius Black! Your grandmother had an affair with Sirius Black, and it must've lasted for over twenty years! That is so romantic, Scorpius, isn't it? But wait... he was her cousin?"
I raise an eyebrow but I have to agree with her. It is romantic, but at the same time it wasn't fair to Lucius or Sirius. My grandfather must not have known about this because I doubt that he would have been okay with it. And for Sirius to spend his whole life loving a woman who could never really be with him... It must've been awful as well.
There's a lump in my throat as I realise what I've done to the only person I've ever truly loved. I take off my glasses and rub my face and can't help feeling grateful when Lily kisses my cheek and excuses herself to go meet Rose.
I don't know how much time passes before I hear the front door close and I need another moment before I find the strength to get up, pick up the box of diaries and take it downstairs into my study. I set it down and pour myself a drink, then fall into my armchair, letting the guilt and sorrow wash over me.
I was the one person he could depend on. I was his hope, his love, his everything. And I let him down. A broken sob escapes my lips and I fight the sadness that overtakes me, force myself to remember the good times.
"Scorpius!" Albus threw himself at me as I entered his flat, and after I put down the grocery bags, my arms wrapped around him immediately, pulling him close. I buried my face in his neck and smiled when Albus rubbed the back of my neck and pulled back to kiss my lips.
We looked at each other for a long moment and I cupped his cheek as I was once again overwhelmed by the intense affection I felt for this man.
Albus grinned and let go of me to pick up the bags I'd dropped, carrying them into the kitchen and starting to put the groceries into the cupboards and fridge. "How was your day?"
I shrugged and watched him dance around the kitchen, infected by his enthusiasm. "It was okay. Stress at work, as usual, and I couldn't wait to get back to you." I smiled as he looked over his shoulder, and didn't mention the fact that I'd visited my father this morning, knowing that would ruin the mood. Father didn't know about Albus, of course. He knew about Lily. I bit my lip and tried not to think about how fucked up my life was, pushing everything away when Albus wrapped his arms around me and kissed my neck.
"I'm hungry," he murmured, trailing his lips up to my ear and kissing the sensitive spot behind it. I shivered and my eyes fluttered closed as I sank my fingers into his messy hair.
"Do you want me to cook something for you?" I asked and had a hard time forming the words as Albus' kisses continued to distract me.
"That's not the kind of dinner I was thinking about," Albus whispered into my ear and I hardened instantly. I felt his hand travel down my chest and stomach and slide between my legs, gently rubbing the bulge in my jeans. I tugged his head back and pressed my lips against his, and our clothes came off as we stumbled our way into Albus' bedroom.
We laughed as we collapsed on the bed and I started to trail kisses all over Albus' pale skin, linking his freckles with my tongue. I felt his skin heat up and watched it flush as I worked my way down his body and wrapped my mouth around his cock. I watched his face as I sucked him off, then moaned when Albus slid his fingers into my hair, tugging it impatiently.
I pulled back and prepared him quickly, and when I slid into him, I was overwhelmed by how right it felt. Even though we'd done this many times before, I could never get over how amazingly perfect it felt to be buried inside Albus, and I could see the same emotions reflected in his eyes as I thrust into him again and again. It didn't take long until we both reached our peaks; it never did but it didn't change how amazing it felt every time.
I watched Albus bite his lip as he writhed on the bed, then almost arched off it as he came between our bodies. I followed him over the edge a moment later, then covered his body with my own as we lay there, sweaty and sticky and panting.
We kissed lazily for several minutes but Albus was never one to lie still for a long time, so I wasn't surprised when he disentangled himself from me and sat up. "Now I am hungry for food," he stated and I laughed.
Our relationship wasn't always perfect. We fought much too often and sometimes needed days before we were both ready to make up. But it was the little things that made me fall in love with Albus over and over again, and I kept coming back, no matter how bad the fights got. I couldn't imagine life without him.
My hand tightens around my glass and I feel the tears slide down my cheeks. I can't even think about the good times anymore because they make me just as sad as remembering the times when life wasn't so perfect. And still I can't help thinking about him every day.
I should have seen it coming, and part of me did. But I still wasn't prepared for it when it happened. I doubt I could ever have been really prepared.
I pour myself another glass of whiskey as I remember his silent cry for help. I always knew that he wasn't handling the situation well, and I still did nothing to change it. I was scared; scared of being discovered, scared of losing him, scared of disappointing everyone.
It was all my fault; I know this now. I even knew it back then, even if I didn't want to accept it. But today, especially after finding out that my grandmother was in a similar situation, it's all clear to me.
Albus' fate was my fault.
It was a supposedly normal day when I first realised that something was wrong. I'd known it before but I just didn't want to admit it to myself or anyone else.
Albus had changed in the years we'd been together. Gone was the happy, enthusiastic boy I used to admire so much. Gone was the smile that used to warm my heart. Gone were the lively green eyes that enchanted me every time I looked into them.
What remained was the broken shell of a once happy boy.
When I was with him, I watched him for hours, studying his face and waiting for a flicker of... something. But nothing ever came. Not anymore. I shivered every time I saw the coldness in Albus' still pretty face, and sometimes it was downright creepy.
I'd been watching him since our beginning at Hogwarts. Never interfering with his life, never talking to him; just observing from afar. If I was quite honest with myself, I was intimidated by how perfect he seemed to be. So I stayed away and watched, and it was enough for me.
Once, Albus had been colourful. Tanned skin with freckles, vivid black hair with a slightly red tint to it and luminous green eyes that had captured me immediately.
Now, everything about him was black and empty. His hair was longer than it had ever been before, hanging lifelessly around his pale face because he refused to go get a haircut. I didn't even know when he'd last seen the sun without the glass of the window separating them. He had dark circles under his now almost black eyes because he rarely slept. Insomnia, he claimed, but I knew better. He was afraid to go to sleep when he was alone.
As I looked at him, I knew it was a cry for help, and I was the only one who could see it. I was the only person Albus was still in touch with, and I was the only one who knew that Albus had given up on life. Even then I knew that I was responsible for it.
Only a few months ago, I'd thought he was going to be all right. I knew our situation was hard for him but I was convinced that he understood. I was there for him whenever he needed me. I looked out for him and made him happy.
Or that's what I thought. At that moment, I remembered the little poem or song or whatever it was that I'd found a couple of weeks earlier. Albus had written it, then apparently discarded it because I'd found it in the trash can.
I hadn't memorised it on purpose, there was just so much sadness in it that I couldn't help but remember every single word Albus had written.
In my first year, my brother turned away from me for getting sorted into Slytherin.
In my second year, my friends turned away from me because older boys bullied me and they didn't want to become targets.
In my third year, the teachers turned away from me because I stopped caring about homework.
In my fourth year, my Quidditch team turned away from me because I no longer cared about catching the Snitch.
In my fifth year, my sister turned away from me because I'd become a selfish arsehole.
In my sixth year, the girls turned away from me because I didn't treat them with the respect they deserved.
In my seventh year, I transferred to Durmstrang because my parents turned away from me when I told them and the world that I'm gay.
I've never seen any of them again. I was alone. I'd given up.
But then he came into my life and gave it a new meaning. He's my everything. My world revolves around him. When he's with me, everything is fine. I'm not sad, I'm not alone and we're happy in the little world behind our wall.
But he never stays. He always goes back to her, and what, at first, was exciting and perfect is becoming increasingly hard to handle. I realise that he will never be mine. I'm-
That was all he'd written. I knew about most of what had happened to Albus. I knew I was the only person he had. I knew he needed someone to bring him back to life, to rescue him from all the evil in the world. I used to think I was that person, but now I know that I was wrong. Maybe there was no hope for Albus in the first place but if there was, then I destroyed it.
I failed him. I let this happen to him and even though I realised how much I was hurting him, I didn't stop.
I failed him and made his life even more miserable than it had been before.
I wipe away my tears and take a deep breath, trying to regain my composure. I can't let myself think about him anymore. I know it's bad for me and that the guilt and shame will only get stronger, the more I think about it. Yet I don't stop as I reach for another one of Narcissa's diaries, knowing that it will hurt me to read it but not caring either way.
The diary I hold in my hands now is dated 2006; the year I was born. I touch the green cover affectionately, then open the book and look for the day of my birth. I slide my glasses back on as I find it, and read.
Today, my son's wife has given me the most precious gift she could've given me; a grandson. He was born at six o'clock this morning, after a long night that was exhausting and painful for his parents. I held him in my arms and stared down at him, marvelling at the resemblance between him and his father. He looks just like Draco did when he came into this world, and I'm sure Lucius looked the same many years ago.
They chose the name Scorpius, and even though I was sceptical when I first heard the name, I've come to the conclusion that it is very fitting. He's going to be a fine man one day.
Inevitably, my grandson's birth made me think of him again. Eight years have passed since his death and not a day has gone by that I didn't think of him. I've fallen back into a comfortable routine with Lucius, yet every time I look at him, the guilt overcomes me. I love him dearly and he is a good husband; has been faithful and loving all these years.
Yet every time he gives me that adoring look, I cannot help but think of Sirius and how different our relationship was to the one I have with Lucius. Lucius is polite and cares for me, gives me everything I want and need.
But there is no passion in our marriage; I don't know if there ever was. Passion was what I had with Sirius. And I have come to the realisation that there is no chance of me ever being truly happy again without him in my life.
Scorpius' birth will bring some life and happiness back into me, but even he cannot replace what I have lost. Nevertheless I've made it my duty to always be there for Scorpius and make sure he doesn't repeat my mistakes.
I want him to be happy. Yes, I want him to be a perfect gentleman and marry a sweet girl who can give him Pureblood children. But at the same time I know that this is not the most important thing. It is much more important for him to be happy. I hope I will manage to teach him that. I couldn't live with myself if I let him make the same mistakes I made.
There are no diaries after that. Narcissa seems to have stopped writing after my birth but I long to know how she felt in the following years. I search for a continuation of her life but I cannot find it. And just as I give up hope, I find one last entry on the final page of the 2006 diary. It is dated 2021 and my stomach tightens as I realise that it is the year of her death.
With shaking hands, I reach for my glass of whiskey and drink a healthy sip before I adjust my glasses to read this last entry.
Many years have passed since I last wrote. Lucius died a couple of years ago and in my heart, I am glad he never found out about my betrayal. I like to think that his life was happier believing he was the love of my life, even though he wasn't.
I think about Sirius constantly and wonder if I should have done things differently. Maybe I should never have married Lucius and spent my life with Sirius. But then I would not have Draco and Scorpius today, and I cannot help but believe that I did the right thing.
Scorpius is growing up and I am so proud of him. I just hope Draco does not pressure him into doing something he doesn't want. Carrying on the family name is important, of course, but it is even more important for Scorpius to do the right thing for him. I want him to be happy, and if living by old Pureblood traditions cannot make him happy, then I hope he will choose his own fulfilment rather than the family's.
I do not think I will be there to see him grow into a young man. I have been sickly these past few months, and I cannot help but feel my time has come. Maybe I am wrong but perhaps it is time for me to join Sirius and Lucius in heaven, or wherever they are.
I think this will be my last entry.
I suck in a sharp breath as I read the last line. Sadness washes over me as I remember the last time I saw my grandmother. I miss her.
I reread the paragraph about me and realise that I've done everything wrong. I fell in love with Lily in our last year at Hogwarts. I chose her to become my wife because I adore her, but also because I knew that marrying a Potter would restore the Malfoy name and she would make me happy. She is a good, beautiful young woman that my parents (after initial grimacing) learned to approve of.
I decided all of that before Albus came into my life. I met him about a year after I asked Lily to marry me. Albus always knew that I was going to marry his sister one day but he still went along with the secret affair we started. I knew that Albus was the only person who could truly make me happy, but my relationship with Lily was comfortable and accepted, so I kept going back to her after spending a few blissful hours with Albus.
At the time, I never thought everything would end like this.
Even before I entered Albus' flat, I knew something was wrong. I unlocked the door and stepped inside, and I was surprised that for once, I wasn't greeted by the customary cloud of cigarette smoke. The windows were cracked open and the flat was clean. My heart jumped because for a foolish moment, I allowed myself to hope that things would look up from now on. Maybe Albus had come to his senses and finally realised that he was the true love of my life, even if we couldn't be together publicly.
I closed the door behind me and looked around. "Albus? Alby, are you here?"
I found his keys on the coffee table and knew that he was there. He wouldn't have left the house without his keys.
I entered his room and found the bed made and the bedroom just as impeccably cleaned as the rest of the flat. My heart started beating faster but I couldn't explain why. I swallowed hard as I reached to open the door that led into the bathroom. I opened it and froze, needing a moment to process what I was seeing.
Albus was in the bathtub, looking incredibly small. The water in the tub was red, and one of Albus' arms hung over the edge of it, dried blood coating his thin, pale arm. A sob escaped me as I fell to my knees beside Albus, gathering him in my arms, my ear pressed against his chest, trying to detect a heartbeat.
Albus was cold, and then I knew that his heart had stopped beating a long time ago. Tears streamed down my face, mixing with the red drops of water all over Albus' fragile body. "Albus. Alby, Al, Albus! Wake up!"
My voice broke as I repeated those words over and over again all the while knowing it was too late. Albus was dead. He'd killed himself. He'd ended his life because I couldn't give him what he needed. Because I'd betrayed him and hurt him and couldn't be the saviour he needed.
I'd failed him.
Seconds, minutes or hours later, I pushed myself up and made myself walk into the bedroom, noticing a piece of paper on the bedside table that I hadn't seen before. I picked it up and sat down hard on the bed, staining the fresh sheets and not caring.
I swallowed around the lump in my throat as I unfolded the note and read the few words written in Albus' shaky handwriting.
My glass is empty and the room dark when I remember those horrible moments that haven't allowed me to sleep for the past few weeks. Rather than make him happier, I failed Albus. He killed himself because he couldn't handle the way I treated him. Guilt does not even come close to what I'm feeling right now. Guilt, regret, shame...
And then I know what I have to do. Lily will forgive me some day, even though she will never understand. My parents won't understand either. No one will. Because no one knows what impact Albus had on me. No one knows that he was the true love of my life and that living without him seems wrong. I don't know if my decision would make sense to anyone else, but it does make sense to me.
It's the only way.
I don't allow myself to think about anyone else as I look at the plain, white pills in my hand. I have no doubts because I do believe that I will see Albus again when I do this. I don't know where I'll end up but I know that I will be with him.
And that's the only thing that counts.
I choose a less painful way than Albus because I know this is more effective and there's no chance of anyone finding me before I'm gone. I swallow the pills slowly and wash them down with more whiskey, feeling their effects immediately.
I get weaker and watch the world around me become blurry. My eyes flutter closed and everything goes black. The only thing I can see is Albus' happy face looking back at me, calling to me and asking me to join him. Soon we will be back where we belong; in the world behind our wall.
The only thing I leave behind is a simple note with two words. I hope someday, she'll understand.