Title: Live Again
Archive: If you want it, take it. :D
Notes: The lyrics are from corvidae9 and they are to "Live Again" by Better Than Ezra. Thank you for such beautiful lyrics! The story is Ron/Pansy with mention of Draco/Pansy. Thanks to hiddenhibiscus for her support. >:D<
Ron Weasley studied the petite, dark-haired girl sitting on the sofa. Her eyes were downcast – as if she were demure, hardly the case – and her hands clasped tightly on her lap.
He took a deep breath, trying to expel the anger he was afraid would only make matters worse and not help Harry at all. “I’m asking you to help save my best friend’s life…is that too much? After all we’ve been through together, Pansy? Is that too much to ask?” After everything I’ve done for you. Everything I risked to save you.
“Yes, it is too much to ask,” she said steadily, keeping her eyes focused on her hands.
Ron’s hands curled into fists and he didn’t bother to keep the anger he felt out of his voice when he answered. “I saved your life, Pansy. I –”
Pansy abruptly stood up and faced Ron. “You risked so much for me? I know, Ron. I know you saved me. And I would return the favour to you without a moment’s hesitation. But it is not you who we are discussing here,” she interrupted, her voice edged with bitterness. “It is Potter. And I can not forgive what he has done to those who I loved. And whether those people deserved what happened to them or not is not the issue. The fact is I am not willing to directly help Potter. Ron, I just can not help him.”
Ron ran a hand through his tousled hair and shook his head sadly. Will we never get past that? How can she hate what I love and yet love me? If she does still love me…if she ever loved me.
“I love it when we fight, it makes me think at least you still care,” he said, his anger having dissipated, only to be replaced with fear that the end was near.
Pansy winced at his words and then frowned deeply. “This is futile,” she said finally.
Ron reached his hand out toward her, wanting to push back a strand of dark brown hair that had fallen over her eyes, but she Disapparated with a small pop and he was left touching nothing but air. “Love me, hate me, I need you around,” he said, the words sounding hollow in the empty room.
Pansy walked slowly through the ruins of Malfoy Manor, her footsteps echoing in the vacant corridors. Gone was all the beauty the place had once held, it was nothing more than a stripped tomb now. She felt her eyes grow damp and she swallowed the lump in her throat, she had not come here to cry at what was lost. Even as she had spoken her denials so vehemently to Ron, she knew that the pain in his eyes would make her reconsider. She wished she were as cold as he had once considered her to be.
Eventually, she found her way to the mausoleum. She traced her finger around the name in the latest addition to this cursed place. She sighed softly and laid her face against the cold marble, her fingers still tracing the grooves in the solid stone. She stayed a long time, humming softly. Before she left, she kissed Draco’s name and whispered, “Forgive me, Draco, but nothing can hurt you now.”
Ron paced the corridor restlessly as Hermione flipped pages in a book that he knew she was only pretending to read. He stopped pacing when he saw the small, cloaked figure approaching. She stopped in front of him and gave a quick sideways glance at Hermione, who quickly excused herself, throwing Ron a wary look before she entered Harry’s room.
As soon as Hermione was gone, Pansy, eyes downcast, whispered, “I’ll do it. Or at least I’ll try.”
“Pansy,” Ron said softly, reaching to stroke her face. “I know this wasn’t an easy –”
She shook her head and placed a finger on his lips. She looked up and down the corridor before speaking. “I know what it is like to lose your best friend. I want to spare you that pain, not because I think I owe you, not because it’s possibly the “right” thing to do, but because I love you.”
Ron swallowed and nodded, afraid that if he spoke he might somehow say the wrong thing and she would change her mind.
“I want to see him.”
Ron took Pansy’s hand and led her into Harry’s hospital room. Hermione was sitting on the edge of his bed, reading softly to him.
“Hogwarts, a History?” Ron asked, scrunching his face in distaste.
Hermione nodded, glancing up from the book, but carefully avoiding eye contact with Pansy. “If he were awake, he would never let me read it to him, so I thought this would be the best time.” She gave a small shrug, her eyes remaining focused on Harry, she continued. “Is she going to help?”
Ron glanced at Pansy, who gave him a tight nod, her lips pursed tightly together. He squeezed her hand. “Yes, Pansy is going to help.”
”It has to be soon,” Hermione said quietly, still not moving her eyes from Harry.
“Obviously,” Pansy said, throwing a disparaging look at the motionless man lying helpless on the narrow bed. “He’s grey. He looks moments from death.”
“I reckon we need to leave – “ Ron started.
Hermione stood up, her hands curled into fists at her side. “You enjoy seeing him like this, don’t you, Parkinson? Or should I say, Malfoy? You may have changed your face, but you can’t change what you are inside. How many days did you mourn your husband before you moved on? Were you happy Draco was dead, so you could finally fuck Ron without feeling guilty? If you ever felt guilty.”
A smile spread slowly across Pansy’s features and Ron groaned, because he recognised that smile. He pulled on Pansy’s hand. “We never….while Draco was –“
”Hush,” Pansy said, still smiling. She pulled her hand out of Ron’s grasp and put it on his chest. “My relationship with Draco was much more complicated than you could ever understand and I have neither the patience nor the time to attempt to explain it to you. While you may know a great deal about things that are written in books, you do not understand people very well at all. Nor is it actually any of your business, if you’re concerned for Ron, know that I love him and I am only helping Potter because of him. As for what I am, I see more blood on your hands and Potter’s hands, than I see on my own. At least Draco died before he became a murderer. You can say hero if you wish, but I know the body count behind the label, so don’t play righteous with me, Granger. Save it for the Daily Prophet.”
Hermione’s face twisted for a moment as she fought the impulse to argue with the slight girl in front of her. “Just find the counter curse. Please.”
Pansy nodded, beatific smile still on her face.
Pansy walked the spiral stairway, her fingers grazing along the cold, rough stone as she went. “Theo?” she called when she reached the top of the stairs. “It’s Pansy. The house elf let me in.”
Theodore Nott glanced up from a complex brass instrument he was tinkering with. “Pansy?”
“Yes,” she said, entering the cluttered, circular tower room, stepping carefully to avoid the many piles of books, parchments and odd apparatuses strewn about the room. “How are you?”
Theo furrowed his brow, his eyes studying Pansy with an intensity he hoped she found uncomfortable. “I must speak with the house elf about letting dead women into the house.”
“Rumours of my death have been greatly exaggerated?” Pansy said with a coy smile as she moved closer to Theo’s desk, stopping at the edge.
He raised a brow. “Apparently. Does Draco live as well?”
Pansy shook her head. “No, he is quite dead.”
“Good, because he was quite deserving of death.”
A frown threatened Pansy’s face, but she recovered quickly. “And me?”
Theo considered for a moment. “Did you betray him?”
“Not while he lived.”
Theo chuckled. “Ah, Pansy, semantics! What you do not say is always so much more interesting than what you do say. You’re a traitor. A betrayer. A conspirator. A turncoat. I know what you seek, then.”
Pansy tilted her head. “Will you give it to me?”
“Is the Ministry just outside? Working on disabling the wards? Ready to drag me to Azkaban?” Theo asked benevolently, moving casually around his desk.
“As it is, they’re not. Apparently last time they tried to break through the wards, there were injuries. Many injuries.”
Theo grinned and Pansy saw a flicker of the rumoured madness in his eyes. “That was a delightful day.”
“I want the counter to the curse that was used on Potter after he defeated…at the final battle.”
”How do you know I created the curse?” Theo asked, smiling patiently.
“You’re the only one with the creativity and skill for that curse,” Pansy said, sliding closer to Theo, carefully avoiding a stack of books by her feet. “I saw him. He’s grey, unconscious…he looks as if he’s being mummified alive.”
Theo laughed. “Oh, I wish I could see him,” he enthused. He considered Pansy for a moment and shook his head. “Potter has done what he was born to do. What is the point of extending his life?”
Because my Ron would miss him if he were gone, Pansy thought to herself, but she said, “The war is over. Let them have their hero. You were never loyal to…the Cause, you just wanted to play with your curses and your inventions, what difference does it make to you, Theo?”
“What difference does it make to you, Pansy?” he asked coldly. “You’re on your second life, how many do you need?”
“I’ve already been given my chance to live again; Theo, this is your chance. If you don’t help, all of this will be taken away,” she spread her arms out expansively, her eyes sweeping the crowded room. “The Ministry will not care what proof there is or is not if their champion dies.”
Theo’s face remained impassive. He walked to a telescope that was pointed out into the darkness. “You can see Draco in the night sky.”
He turned to face her again. “I never liked him, nor do I like you, Pansy Parkinson Malfoy -- traitor, betrayer, conspirator, and turncoat.”
“But you do like to be left alone to your research, don’t you?” Pansy said crisply.
Theo nodded reluctantly as Pansy graced him with her most saintly smile.
Pansy was curled up on the sofa, a thick afghan covering her. Ron entered the room quietly and added wood to the fire burning and sat down next to her. Her eyes were closed, but he knew she was not sleeping. “Harry woke up; he’s expected to fully recover and will hopefully be released by the end of the week.”
Pansy’s eyes flickered open and she stared at the dancing flames. “Do you believe time heals all wounds?” she asked, reaching for Ron’s hand.
Ron grasped Pansy’s hand, their fingers intertwining. “Yes, as long as we don’t pick the scabs off.”
Pansy rolled her eyes and relaxed into Ron’s arms. “I don’t think time heals. I think it takes more than that. You heal me. Does that trouble you? It scares me.”
“Don’t fear, Pansy. Just live again.”
She turned her head to his and nodded slightly before pressing her lips against his.
Even though you're at a loss.
A shell of empty thoughts.
But you glow,
You stretch and pull me out.
Does that trouble you?
Does that trouble you?
Make me live again
I need you around
Make me live again
I want you around
I never had experienced
So how could i resist?
And i'm fine
A little light-headed.
Does that worry you?
I didn't mean to worry you.
Now, retreating from the light
I love it when we fight
It makes me think
At least you still care
Give up, you're not going anywhere
Moonlight, illuminates your stare
And it's great, captivating you
Does that trouble you?
I didn't mean to trouble you
Chorus & fade
Title: Live Again