jamming!!!!

oh no my IRL friends have finally found this blog and some of them are very upset that I haven’t included them in a comic yet

tbh take it as a compliment the only reasons other poeple get depicted are if they’re being blatantly transphobic or have come up with some glorious gender-related pun

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Fic: I Am My Brother’s Keeper (Part 2 of 4)

By: @rarity-kasket

2.9k words, rated G

Being the son of Harry Potter isn’t easy and being the brother of James Sirius “Golden Boy” Potter doesn’t make it any better. However, as obnoxious as his brother can be, Albus wouldn’t trade him for the world. When Albus accidentally stumbles upon a secret, it threatens to break apart his already complicated and messy relationship with James.

Again, special thanks to @abradystrix and @autumn-of-ilvermorny being amazing human beings! 

Please click for Part 1, Part 3


Winter of 2019

“Al!”

Albus groans inwardly. James calling after him is the last thing that Albus wants to hear right now. He doesn’t look back, but instead, he quickens his pace down the corridor.  

“Hey, wait up!”

The sound of James’s footsteps picks up in rhythm with his own. When Albus decides to break into a sprint, a hand reaches out to grab him by the sleeve of his robe.

“Why the rush–woah, what happened to your eye, Al?” James exclaims as he studies Albus’s darkened left eye.

“It’s Albus, and it’s nothing.” Albus shrugs it off dismissively. “Now, if you would excuse me, I am very busy.”

“Yes, I’m very sure,” James says skeptically before his eyes study the bruise. He frowns, and his gaze makes Albus uncomfortable. “That looks like it hurts. You should get that checked out. Come on, let me walk you down to Madam Pomfrey.”  James reaches out to touch the soft bruise under Albus’s left eye before his brother flinches away, narrowing his emerald eyes into a distrustful glare.

“Don’t.” Albus snarls. James stares back at him, hurt.

“Albus, come on. At least, tell me who did this to you. Maybe I could–”

“I don’t need you defending my honor.”

“Merlin’s beard don’t be so bloody stubborn! I’m trying to help.” James says exasperatedly.

“What? You suddenly care what happens to me now?” Albus laughs bitterly. “Golden Boy Potter doing his one good deed of the day–”

“Albus–”

“-by gracing the black sheep of the Potter Legacy with his presence. What did I ever do to deserve this?” Albus rails sarcastically.

“I’m just trying–”

Albus doesn’t let James get another word in.

“What do you want a gold medal? A pat on the back? A gold star? “ He replies nastily as he measures James with a dark and disdainful glare. “Please, the only thing you care about is yourself.”

James reels back in disbelief as if Albus has struck him across the face.

In that moment, it couldn’t be more obvious how far the two brothers have drifted apart.

“You can be really cruel sometimes,” James confesses.

“ Just because you’re miserable doesn’t mean that you have to make everyone else around you miserable.“ James spits out before taking a few steps back. He turns away from Albus, and something seething and hot flares inside Albus.

“I’ve been getting by for three years without you. Don’t pretend that you care now.” Albus sneers, and he feels some sick and twisted satisfaction when he sees James flinch at the words before leaving Albus alone in the empty corridor.

The Present, Spring of 2025

As soon as the door swings open, Albus instantly regrets this decision to beg James for help. Is he really this desperate?

Upon seeing his brother, James grins, leaning coolly against the doorframe with his arms folded over his chest.

“I can only assume that you’re here to finally admit your undying love for Scorpius Malfoy.”

Albus’s cheeks burn as he quickly breezes past James.

“Ha, funny. ” Albus replies drily before standing in James’s living room, scratching the back of his head awkwardly.

“I guess you were right. Uh–that I need your help. Not the undying love part.” Albus adds quickly, and James cocks his head in mild amusement.

“I never thought I would see the day that Albus Severus Potter would actually come crawling to me for help.”

“I know it’s hard not to be an obnoxious prick every five minutes, but could at least you try?”

“I’m sorry. This moment is too beautiful.”

Albus sighs at  James’s infuriating grin.

“You know what, this is pointless.” Why did he even think coming to James would be a good idea? Albus crosses over to the door, but James easily catches him by the collar of his shirt.

“Relax, it was a joke. Let me help. I want to help. ” James claps his hands together and bats those dark lashes at Albus pleadingly. It’s the picture of innocence.

Honestly, this only makes Albus even more distrustful.

“You really want to help me?” Albus raises a skeptical eyebrow.

“Seriously. Sit, make yourself comfortable.” James gestures to the sofa. “Did you come from class?”

“Yeah, uh, an introduction to psychology course. I have another class later.”  Albus says as he drops his backpack and notebook down on the sofa.  James wrinkles his nose at this.

“What do you plan to do after you graduate?” James asks curiously.

Albus shrugs. He hasn’t decided yet, despite the fact that he was quickly approaching the end of the year. However, there is this one particular class…

Introduction to Acting.

It was originally a course to fill an elective. He never actually expected to enjoy it so much. However, there is something cathartic about slipping away from reality for even a few moments, stepping into someone else’s world and seeing life in a completely new light. With a script in his hands, Albus slips away, and he is transformed into whatever he needs to be.

Currently, his lecturer is attempting to persuade Albus into auditioning for their fall production of Hamlet. He’s not entirely sure yet…

“Do you plan on working in the Muggle Investigation Department at the Ministry? I mean your experience would be useful there.”

Albus frowns as James pitches the idea of working for the Ministry. He would rather die than work at the Ministry of Magic with his father and his brother.

Albus doesn’t expect James or his family to fully understand his choice to attend a Muggle university after Hogwarts. Scorpius gets it, and he thinks his mother gets it too. In his classes, he’s not Harry Potter’s son. He doesn’t shrink in the shadow of the Potter Legacy. There, no one cares about where he comes from, and that is such a relief. To just be Albus.

“It’s not like I’m giving up magic completely.”

“I never said that,” James argues.

“You didn’t have to. I see it in your face.” Albus sighs. “Maybe coming over was a mistake.”

“No, you came to me for help. I want to do this for you.”

“It doesn’t matter. I’m being naive. Scorpius doesn’t–he couldn’t…”

“He couldn’t what?”

Albus feels his face grow hot before dragging his hand over his face. Was James really going to make him say it out loud?

“He couldn’t possibly feel the same way.” The words make Albus’s chest constrict as if it’s almost painful to say it.

“You know this for sure?” James asks. His expression grows suddenly serious.

“I just know.”

“So you haven’t talked to him? You’re just assuming.”

“I’m not assuming.”

James sighs.

“I didn’t realize how thick you would be. Al, talk to him. Be honest with Scorpius about your feelings. You’ll never know unless you talk to him. I know it’s terrifying to put yourself out there in the deep end. I know you. You’re crazy stupid about Scorpius, so stop wasting your time and tell him, because being in love feels –” He falters. “–really great.”

There is a long pause of silence as Albus watches a pink-hued flush color James’s cheeks. His dark brown eyes glimmer with something quite melancholy. It’s not a reaction that he expects from James, whose lips are perpetually carved into a smile. His eyes always shine with mischief.

Why does he look like that? Before Albus opens his mouth to speak, there is a thin pop.

Teddy stands in the middle of James’s living room. He looks pleasantly surprised to see Albus.

“Oh hello there, Albus,” He greets, gracing him with a charming grin before he sits on the sofa beside him.  “James didn’t tell me that you would be stopping by. How is school?”

Albus cannot help the smile that is threatening to surface on his lips. Teddy has this way of waltzing into a room, making everything warm and welcoming and bright. Sometimes, Albus needs that.  

“Ugh, you’re so friendly. It’s gross.” James grumbles, rolling his eyes. He looks so childish as he sulks in the sofa with his arms folded over his chest. Teddy grins before he reaches over Albus to pinch James’s cheek.

“Is baby Jamie jealous? Not getting enough attention.” Albus laughs, and James’s face grows as scarlet as the Gryffindor chest from embarrassment as he tries to glare narrowly at Teddy.

“Teddy–stop!” James whines.

“No, I’m giving baby Jamie attention.” He smiles before crawling over a thoroughly amused Albus and wrestling James down on the sofa. They are a pair of flailing limbs and laughter. When James is pinned in a corner, Teddy ruffles James’s untidy hair and nuzzles their cheeks together. James squirms under Teddy’s weight. When he is freed, James glares half-heartedly at Teddy, the grin threatening to break on his lip betraying him.

“You’re the worst,” James tells Teddy, his brown eyes shimmering with something that Albus cannot quite decipher. He’s seen that shimmer before. He has caught his mother looking at their dad that way when she thinks no one is looking. It’s the same shimmer that Scorpius sometimes wears when he sits by their kitchen window quietly reading a new book to himself.

“I know.” A fond smile tugs on Teddy’s lips.  

Something passes between the two.

Strange.

Albus thinks.

However, he doesn’t ponder on it too long. It’s a ridiculous notion.

He’s imagining things.

Clearing his throat, Albus stands before reaching for his messenger bag.

“I was actually on my way back to class now,” Albus says, and Teddy frowns.

“Aw, I just got here, and you’re already leaving–”

“He probably doesn’t want to be stuck here with you. I know I don’t want to be.” James quips. Teddy doesn’t say anything. Teddy simply smiles at James adoringly. When it is too much, James, red-faced, looks away.

“I should be leaving,”  Albus says. Teddy climbs off the sofa and crosses over to him. He smiles warmly.

“You’ll have to tell me all about school. Maybe without Jamie here trying to hog all the attention.” Albus smiles.

“Hey!” James tries to interject, but both Teddy and Albus ignore him.

“Yeah, okay. Soon.” With a pop, he is gone.

When Albus starts looking for his notebook before his next class, he realizes that he has left it at James’s flat. In his hasty exit, Albus only picked up his backpack.

How could he be so stupid as to leave his notes?

It’s no problem really, just an inconvenience.

Fine, he’ll apparate in quickly, grab his notebook, get out, and run to class.

Finding somewhere empty and hidden at the university, Albus apparates back to James’s flat.

In James’s flat, he finds his notebook wedged in between the sofa cushions. Relief floods his chest at the sight of it, and he quickly snatches up the notebook and stuffs it in his messenger bag. Albus prepares to apparate when he hears voices quietly wafting from the hallway.

“–I was thinking about last Sunday. It went so well. And then Albus being here earlier today…” Albus instantly recognizes Teddy’s voice.

Why is Teddy talking about him? Albus lingers at the edge of the hallway to listen to more. “Maybe–”

“This was your idea in the first place, and things are great this way.” This is undoubtedly James.

“I know, but things will be different after I get back from Romania. I’ll be more settled. I think Albus would understand if we told him. Maybe Harry and Ginny would understand. We could tell them together.”

“Um, no way. We are most definitely not telling my dad, the Savior of the Wizarding World and the Head of Magical Law Enforcement at the Ministry of Magic and your godfather! Do you have a death wish?”

There is a long pause, and Albus feels himself leaning in with great curiosity.

“Aren’t you tired of hiding? Are you even happy with the way things are?” Teddy speaks so faintly that Albus nearly misses it.

“They’re not going to understand.”

“It’s been a year,” Teddy says softly as Albus stands outside James’s open bedroom door.

“Over a year. A year and four months.” James corrects him.

Over a  year?

What does James feel like he needs to hide from him? From all of them?

Albus peers silently into the room.

James, with his arms defiantly crossed over his chest, stands in front of Teddy, who is sitting at the edge of the bed. The frown on James’s lips makes it evident that his brother would rather be anywhere than having this conversation. The two appear completely unaware of Albus’s hidden presence.

“Will you at least consider telling them?” Teddy pulls James closer to him; his hands rest lightly on James’s waist. In response, James weaves a hand through Teddy’s bright blue hair, and Teddy closes his eyes and smiles. His hair changes from bright blue to a beautiful dark magenta as James quietly plays in his hair. It looks so natural. They look so natural and so comfortable with each other.

After a while, James speaks quietly.

“I just don’t want them to hate me,” James wears that same melancholy glimmer in his eyes from earlier, and Albus wants nothing more than to reach out for James, but he doesn’t know how. He needs to reassure James that they could never hate him. Albus could never hate him, but he wouldn’t know the words to say. Albus is rooted to the floor by his own cowardice.  

James’s statement makes Teddy open his eyes. He looks at James, so open and so warm.

“James Sirius Potter, look at me.” Ever so slowly, James’s gaze meets Teddy’s, glossy and wet.

“They could never hate you. I don’t think that Harry and Ginny have an unkind bone in their body. I just– I don’t want you to feel like you have to hide a piece of yourself from them.” His voice is just as open and warm and soft as the way he looks at James. His brother’s face grows flushed under Teddy’s gaze, and his hand slips out of Teddy’s hair, gently tracing along the curve of his neck.

James crawls up on the bed, his knees on either side of Teddy’s hips and his hands on Teddy’s shoulders to steady himself. James leans his forehead against Teddy’s and closes his eyes.

They stay like this for a long moment before Teddy walks two fingers up James’s arm, and for some reason, this makes his brother’s lips curve into a soft smile.

James murmurs something too quietly for Albus to hear. Whatever it is, it makes Teddy laugh earnestly before he leans in, pressing their mouths other.

The sheer shock of the kiss is enough to make Albus drop his journal.

At the soft thud of the notebook hitting the floor, Teddy and James quickly spring apart to find Albus gawking in the doorway.

James’s expression is one of astonishment before melting into pure annoyance.

“What are you doing here?” James demands. His sudden hostility takes Albus off guard. He is used to James’s easy-going smiles and mischievous smirks.

“I- uh came back for this…” Albus quickly scrambles to grab the leather notebook. Teddy looks over at James, concerned.

“James–” Teddy starts.

James stands, dragging a hand over his face. “I need to talk to Albus. Alone.”

Teddy stands too. When he reaches out to touch James, the other shrinks away from him. Teddy appears hurt.

“You don’t have to do this alone.”

“I know.”

Teddy looks unconvinced, but he sighs before turning to Albus, who stares at the scene numbly. Teddy opens his mouth to say something to Albus before shutting it and apparating out.

Neither of the Potter brothers say anything but linger in a tense silence.

Albus is lost for words.

Every exchange between Teddy and James is bathed in a new light, like watching the colorful pieces of a kaleidoscope break apart and come together in new shapes. Suddenly, every sentence that was spoken, every glance that was shared, and every casual touch takes on a new meaning.

Albus feels the world shifting from under his feet.

His brother and Teddy, their godbrother.

“Teddy and you?” Albus asks, his mind processing this new revelation.  James ignores the question.

“Albus, listen, that wasn’t what it looked like.”

“Really? What exactly is going on between Teddy and you?” Albus snaps.

James dodges Albus’s inquisitive stare.

“Teddy and I are–” James falters, screwing his eyes shut and taking in a shuddering breath before opening his eyes again. “That was nothing,” he finishes lamely.

“It didn’t look like nothing. Whatever I just witnessed was most definitely not nothing.”

“Al–”

“James, I’m not an idiot. I would appreciate it if you would not treat me like one.”  Albus says, feeling his temper flare as James’s inability to simply be honest with him.

“I don’t know what you’re talking about.” James denies, starting for the door and shoving past Albus, who manages to catch the sleeve of his shirt.

“Please James, I just want the truth.”

“Alright, you want the truth? There is nothing between Teddy and me.”  

“You’re such a hypocrite. You’re preaching to me about being honest, and you don’t even have the decency to tell me the truth.”

“Al, I said it was nothing, and you’re not going to say anything to anyone because you saw nothin–”

“No, I saw you snogging with Teddy. Our godbrother. Teddy and you. What the bloody hell James?”

James tears his arm out of Albus’s grip. “I don’t need your judgement!” he snaps.

Albus is bewildered by James’s comments. “Judgement? I’m trying to–”

“You can leave now.”

“What?”

“You heard me. This conversation is over.”

“James–”

“Get. Out.”

“Just let me–”

“Leave!”

Albus explodes, “Fine!”

With his notebook, Albus apparates out of James’s flat and back to class.

anonymous asked:

Cuddles with Iwaizumi and Oikawa?

I tried my best?


Yet again, Iwaizumi presses a kiss to your forehead in the midst of silence. You want to ask what spurred his open need for affection, but the softness of his lips paired with the way his eyes glimmer in adoration when he looks at you, makes your words jumble and catch at the back of your throat.

“Sorry, have am I acting weird?” He asks, lips parting slightly. Your eyes flicker to his mouth as you realise a little too late that he’s gauging your response.

“A little, but I’m not complaining.” It’s hard to fight the grin tugging at your lips, and the smirk that comes to his as he catches you staring. “It’s been a while.”

His arms tighten around your waist in agreement, tugging you closer against his body. He basks in the warmth of your body and the post-exam bliss even more than you do, but you’re sure it’s because nobody will be trying to solicit him as a tutor for at least a few months.

“Can you stay the night?” You ask, although your words are muffled against his collarbone. If he had an ounce of hesitation in him, it would have melted from the softness in your voice.

“Sure, you’ve still got some of my things, right?”

“Of course!” You grin, reminding Iwaizumi just why he’ll give in to you every time.


“I take that practice went well?” You ask while Oikawa’s arm is sliding around your waist, pulling you closer to lean against his side and sink into the plush mattress with him.

“What makes you say that?” He asks, absentmindedly rubbing soothing circles into your waist.

You yawn as you rest your head against his shoulder.  “You finished on time for once. For a second I thought you’d gotten hurt again.”

He laughs, but it starts to sound strained, over the teasing lilt you’ve grown so used to. “I’m always making you worry about me too much.” He sighs, knowing it’s nothing new. He shifts, to pull you against him and rest a hand over the small of your back.

“Someone has to.” He stiffens, but when he sees that you’re still wearing a tired smile, he relaxes again. He’s still not sure why, but there’s something about ending a tiring day with you that makes him forget whatever had him worked up in the first place.

His brown eyes gleam in a mischievous glint, warm with the same softness you fell for. You only notice the hand settling at the back of your head once Oikawa is bringing his lips to yours, kissing softly and slow, singing his praises in ways words can’t.

“I take that practice went well?” You ask while Oikawa’s arm is sliding around your waist, pulling you closer to lean against his side and sink into the plush mattress with him.

“What makes you say that?” He asks, absentmindedly rubbing soothing circles into your waist.

You yawn as you rest your head against his shoulder.  “You finished on time for once. For a second I thought you’d gotten hurt again.”

He laughs, but it starts to sound strained, over the teasing lilt you’ve grown so used to. “I’m always making you worry about me too much.” He sighs, knowing it’s nothing new. He shifts, to pull you against him and rest a hand over the small of your back.

“Someone has to.” He stiffens, but when he sees that you’re still wearing a tired smile, he relaxes again. He’s still not sure why, but there’s something about ending a tiring day with you that makes him forget whatever had him worked up in the first place.

His brown eyes gleam in a mischievous glint, warm with the same softness you fell for. You only notice the hand settling at the back of your head once Oikawa is bringing his lips to yours, kissing softly and slow, singing his praises in ways words can’t.

But he can’t keep his mouth shut when he catches your dazes expression as he pulls away. “___-chan, you’re so adorable!”

I CANT BELIEVE THIS IS ALL BECAUSE OF A KIDS GAME

THE AJ COMMUNITY ON OTHER SOCIAL MEDIA IS GOING DOWN IN FLAMES YO
JULIAN GOT REMOVED FROM THE ANIMAL JAM YOUTUBE BANNER THING AND LIKE AJHQ HAS BANNED HIM FOR SO LONG BECAUSE OF THAT VIDEO WITH THE BUSHES HAVIN SEX I HAVE A SCREENSHOT OF HIS RANT ON IG BHT I CANT POST IT CUZ MOBILE SUCKS.
AND THEN ON ANIMAL JAM AMINO YOO ONE OF THE LEADERS GOT DEMOTED (SHE LOST HER LEADER TITLE) AND THE AMINO TEAM ISNT TELLING HER WHY LIKE THIS IS CRAZY AND ONE OF THE CURATORS (THEY LIKE MONITOR THE STUFF THAT PEOPLE POST) I THINK SHE LEFT AND THE OTHER LEADER IS BEING ALL SALTY LIKE AHHHH (Ayo if you got aj amino follow me, I’m Animal Fam) (shameless promotion and advertisement is shameless)
But i love how here on tumblr we’re all just shitposting and there’s no drama at all cuz like, we’re just tryna have a good time y'all..

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Fic: I Am My Brother’s Keeper (Part 3 of 4)

By: @rarity-kasket

2.3k words, rated G

Being the son of Harry Potter isn’t easy and being the brother of James Sirius “Golden Boy” Potter doesn’t make it any better. However, as obnoxious as his brother can be, Albus wouldn’t trade him for the world. When Albus accidentally stumbles upon a secret, it threatens to break apart his already complicated and messy relationship with James.


Again, special thanks to @abradystrix and @autumn-of-ilvermorny. You is smart. You is kind. You is important!

Please click for Part 1, Part 2


Summer 2018

“And you’ll write to me over the summer?” Scorpius asks, bouncing on his toes as he stood on the train platform. Albus attempts to feign an exasperated sigh, but a subtle smile betrays him.

“Yes. I’ll write. You’ve already asked me twice on the train.”

“Actually three times.” Scorpius corrects him, his cheeks growing pink. “The summer will be dreadfully boring without you.”

Suddenly, James leaps off of the train, cuffing Albus on the back of the head before disappearing into the busy crowd.

“Hey Slytherin, Mum and Dad are here!” Albus glowers in the direction that James disappears before shifting his gaze to Scorpius.

“Please take me with you.” He begs Scorpius.

“You would rather spend your summer with the rumored son of Voldemort than your dad, the legendary Harry Potter?” Scorpius asks, to which Albus rolls his eyes.

“Trust me, you’re better company than my dad and James. Ugh, the entire summer is just going to be those two being chummy and swapping Hogwarts stories.”

“Now you have your own Hogwarts stories to share.” Scorpius offers, his eyes optimistic. Albus snorts bitterly.

“Yeah, which story do you suggest that I tell them first? The one where I was the last kid to get my broom up in flying lessons? Or the one where Karl Jenkins hid our wands and then sealed us in our dorm so that we couldn’t attend the end of term feast?” Albus asks sarcastically.  “I don’t know what’s worse, being at Hogwarts or being stuck in the same house as James all summer.”

“Lucky for you then, because you have a good friend who is willing to entertain you all summer. So it won’t be a complete waste.”

“Promise me that you’ll write often.”

“Albus, I would keep writing even if you never sent me a single letter back, but please do write. Otherwise, I’ll look pathetic. You’re going to get sick of me.” Scorpius smiles awkwardly.

“I could never get tired of you.”

The Present, Spring 2025

“So Teddy and James, huh?” Perched on his bed, Scorpius muses to himself as he watches Albus pace frantically around the room.

“Yeah.”

Scorpius sighs.

“Albus, please sit. You’re making me dizzy pacing around like that.”

Albus freezes on the spot, unsure of himself before Scorpius pats a spot on the bed next to him.  Accepting the invitation, Albus crawls into bed, sitting against the headboard next to Scorpius. He is all too aware of every point of contact their bodies make. The gentle press of their shoulders, arms, and thighs.

“Sorry. I’m just–” Albus lets out a loud incomprehensible sound of frustration before flinging a pillow. Scorpius frowns as he watches the pillow sail across the room.

“How do you feel about James and Teddy?” Scorpius asks quietly, and Albus shrugs.

“I’m not going to lie. It’s kind of weird, but James didn’t even give me a chance to be okay with it. He just lied to me.” Something very painful and all too familiar flares inside him. “He didn’t even give me a chance,” Albus repeats miserably, and Scorpius leans his head on Albus’s shoulder. Albus is aware of how intimate the gesture is, but it’s comforting. “He’s the worst brother ever.”

“You don’t mean that,” Scorpius says quietly.

“I do.”

“No, you don’t.”

“How do you know?”

“Because I know you, Albus, and I know your heart.”

In the moment, Albus wonders if Scorpius can hear the incessantly loud rush of his heart thrumming in his chest. If he does, Albus wonders if he knows that he is the cause of it.

Because I know you Albus, and I know your heart.

Albus doesn’t say anything. He doesn’t trust himself to not spew his feelings for Scorpius all over the place.

He thinks of James.

I know you. You’re crazy stupid about Scorpius, so stop wasting your time and tell him because being in love feels –really great.

Is he in love with Scorpius? He knows that he loves Scorpius. He would do anything for him because he was his first and only friend, but Albus has never been in love as far as he knows. He doesn’t know the difference. And he wants nothing more than to run to James’s apartment and ask him what is the difference between loving someone and being in love with someone, but James has shut him out.

Suddenly, it feels like their Hogwarts days again, two brothers existing in two very separate and different spheres.

“Maybe he’s scared?” Scorpius comments quietly.

“Scared? What could James possibly be afraid of? He’s one of the bravest people that I know. He’s too brave, in fact, he’s foolhardy.”

“Of what you might think of him.” Scorpius voices. “That you would think less of him.”

“I don’t know…” Albus swallows thickly as he is left with the startling and upsetting revelation that he doesn’t know his brother as well as he thought he did. He doesn’t know what James is thinking or feeling. Or how to diffuse the blow up from earlier. What can he say to make this right?

“I don’t know what to say to him. I always thought James was like an open book. He’s the Golden Boy. He’s never had to worry about anything.  What do you say to someone like that?” Albus asks.

“You don’t have to say anything. Just be there for them.”

Albus looks down at Scorpius, who has his chin propped on Albus’s shoulder. As if sensing his gaze, Scorpius’s owlish grey eyes flicker up with meet Albus’s. Their faces are so close. Albus imagines what would happen if he just leaned in, letting their lips touch. The thought makes his heart lurch and his spine shiver. He wants nothing more than to take Scorpius’s face in his hands and kiss him until the sun comes up. The thought makes his chest ache with want.

“I should go to bed.” Albus clears his throat awkwardly.

“Or you can stay.”

The words paralyze Albus as his emerald orbs search Scorpius’s face, for some clue or sign. Under Albus’s intense gaze, Scorpius pulls back.

Overanalyzing Scorpius’s every move, Albus comes to the frustrating conclusion that he doesn’t know what the bloody hell any of this means.

Scorpius takes in a deep breath and forces his eyes to meet Albus once more.

“You don’t have to, but you look like someone who really doesn’t want to be alone right now. So stay, if you want.” Scorpius says quietly.

It’s true. He doesn’t want to be alone with his thoughts right now. However, it’s not the reason he says, “Okay.”

He says okay because he’s a selfish human being.

Albus settles back into the bed, slipping under the blankets. Scorpius’s silk sheets are cool and smooth again his skin. Pressing his blushing face into the pillow, Albus inhales the sweet scent. It smells like peppermint, like the shampoo that Scorpius uses. Merlin’s beard, he’s embarrassing.

If Scorpius notices anything weird, he doesn’t say anything. He grabs his wand and whispers a quiet incantation before the two are enveloped in darkness except for the faint light emanating from his wand.

“I have some studying to do, so I’ll stay awake until you fall asleep,” Scorpius says quietly.

Albus buries his face further into the pillow, smiling.

“Why are you so good at this?”

“At what?”

“Comfort.”

“My mum.” Scorpius smiles sadly, and in his eyes, Albus can see him conjuring up the memory of her. Albus swallows thickly, regretting that he asked. He prepares to apologize, but Scorpius continues. “She always knew just what to say or what to do to comfort me. So whenever someone needs comforting, I think about what Mum would do, because she had the kindest heart that I have ever seen.”

“You have her heart.” Albus murmurs quietly into the pillow, but he doesn’t think Scorpius hears him.

The quiet sound of Scorpius turning pages of a book lulls Albus to sleep.

A week goes by, and James and Albus manage to avoid each other like the plague. When their traditional Sunday dinner rolls around, Albus is surprised that James doesn’t make up an excuse to avoid the gathering. He is there, seated at the table, conversing with their dad about some event that happened at the Ministry today. Their mum is off in Germany for the weekend to review a Quidditch match, and Lily is at Hogwarts, so it’s just the men this Sunday.

“Oh hello, Albus and Scorpius,” Harry greets them; the wrinkles near his eyes smile kindly at them.

“Hey, Dad.”

“Hi, Harry!” Scorpius greets him enthusiastically as he takes a seat across from Harry. “So I have a story for you.”

“You do?”

“Rightio! A wizard walks in the front doors of St. Mungo’s, because he accidentally ingested a shrinking potion. The healer tells him to sit in the lobby; he will be with him shortly. The wizard sits there for a while, waiting. Meanwhile, another wizard comes in for treatment. The healer takes the other wizard straight away. Before he does, he apologizes to the shrunken wizard and asks him if he can wait for a little longer. The elderly wizard says, ‘No problem, I can be a little patient’.” Scorpius grins. Albus is quick on the uptake and groans at the pun that Scorpius has landed on his father. It takes Harry a beat to let it sink in. Even James grimaces.

“That one was actually good,” Harry compliments him.

“Really?” Scorpius asks, hopeful.

“Best one so far.”

“Dad, all of his jokes awful,” Albus says drily, and Harry simply smiles.

“Like I said, best one so far.”

Scorpius joins Harry and James’s conversation. As Albus watches them interact it becomes unfathomable to him how his father had ever thought Scorpius was a dark cloud surrounding him. Scorpius, with his stupid jokes, who has sunlight in his smile. Over time, Scorpius Malfoy has found a way to affectionately worm his way into every Potter’s heart, including Harry’s.

Excusing himself, Harry retreats to the kitchen to check on dinner, and Scorpius eagerly volunteers to help him.

Which leaves James and Albus alone.

His gaze travels to James, who actively avoids all eye contact.

“Could we talk? Maybe after dinner?” Albus doesn’t know what to say to James or if he possesses the courage to start this conversation. He’s completely aware of his inability to be emotionally vulnerable with other people, and it feels like he’s flying blind here.

James pretends not to hear him as plays with a fork on the table.

“James.”

No response.

“Please.”

Nothing.

“You didn’t even give me a chance to be okay wi–”

“Albus, not now.” James hisses sharply at Albus before he glances cautiously at the kitchen.

“I don’t want to argue. Just talk.”

“I’m busy,” James says nonchalantly.

“You’re scratching your fork against the table. I doubt you’re busy.” Albus replies sourly.

“I’m not discussing this here, with you.” James huffs before attempting to make an escape to the kitchen. Albus quickly launches himself in front of James.

“You can’t keep avoiding me–”

“Watch me.”

“–or shutting me out.” This makes James stop in his tracks as he looks at Albus, unbelievably, before he laughs. His laughter is hard and bitter; it makes Albus cringes.

“Wow, that’s rich coming from you. Like you have room to talk.”

“What does that mean?”

“You’re always the one shutting people out. You’re the one who just bottles things up and wallows in his own misery. You’ve never actually let anyone in. You’ve never let me in–”

“You’ve never tried!” Albus cries. “Where were you those first four years of Hogwarts, huh? I could have really used someone in my corner and that person was Scorpius when it should have been you, James. Do you know why it wasn’t you? Because James Potter, who has everything he could ever possibly want in life, doesn’t care about anyone else but himself.”

“I’m so sick of you thinking that my life is so easy.”

“Because it is! You’re the popular one. You’re the confident one. You’re the talented one. I’m not going to stand here and feel sorry for a perfect, spoiled golden boy who thinks one stupid secret is going to ruin his entire life. Get over yourself!”

“Yeah, well, I would rather be a spoiled golden boy than the useless dark smudge on the Potter family.” James shoots back darkly.

It feels like a cold shock of ice water splashing down his back. Paralyzing and numbing.  The words settle into his bones like an unforgiving frost. For a second, he wishes that James would have just struck him across the face. Anything would have been better than hearing those words. The words that he fears are true after all.  

Albus doesn’t recall when their father appears in the doorway, wearing a concerned expression.

“What is going on out here?” Harry asks.

Upon seeing their father, the cold evaporates. Instead, something hot and angry and red flares inside of Albus’s chest. Something begging to be unleashed and threatening to destroy everything in its wake.

Albus turns to their father. “Hey Dad, I think you would find it interesting to know what James and Te–”

Something catches his eyes.

Scorpius.

Standing in the doorway.

“Albus, please, don’t do this.” He begs quietly.

Suddenly, looking at Scorpius brings him back to reality, and his face flushes with shame.

“Someone needs to explain what exactly is going on here. Albus?” Harry looks between the two of his sons, neither say anything. “James?”

Albus’s gaze slowly meets James, who is staring back at him. His deep brown eyes hold a heavy mixture of emotion.

Rage.

Sadness.

Fear.

“Fuck you, Albus.”