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20 January 2009 @ 07:00 pm
Gift for heyhoolou  
Title: Appreciation
Author: perculious
Recipient: heyhoolou
Pairing(s): Albus Severus/Scorpius
Rating: PG-13
Warnings: None.
Summary: Albus has been having some strange feelings lately, so he decides to talk to his best friend about it. Scorpius has some ideas about how to deal with the problem.
Word Count: 2419
Disclaimer: All Harry Potter characters herein are the property of J.K. Rowling and Bloomsbury/Scholastic. No copyright infringement is intended.
Author’s notes: heyhoolou, I just want to say that when I got your request it made me squee a lot. :D I hope this measures up to your clearly awesome taste.



By the time Albus was sixteen, he had known Scorpius Malfoy for five years.

They'd met on the train in Albus' first year. Albus had been curious about the little blond boy who was the source of so much parental banter, and Scorpius had been... well, at first, Scorpius had been rather quiet and surly. But Albus hadn't minded. By the end of the train ride, Scorpius was detailing his plans for improved magical cleaning substances. Albus was calculating the many advantages of having a smart friend.

Albus had been disappointed when Scorpius was Sorted into Ravenclaw instead of Slytherin, the House he did choose after all, but six years later they were still close, which was why he was worried.

It started small. When Scorpius got up from their breakfast table (the Ravenclaw table, that week), a shaft of light came down from the ceiling and suddenly caught him in profile. His hair glowed white, and his pale skin lit like snow on a sunny day. Albus suddenly caught how delicate that profile was. The straight, even nose above the ski slope crest of a beautiful lip. The cheekbones. The hint of gray in the side view of his eye.

Albus swallowed.

"Are you coming, Al?" Scorpius said, and suddenly it was gone. Scorpius was his everyday friend again.

"Yeah," Albus said, and hurried after him.

It happened again in History of Magic. Albus, bored, was trying to get Scorpius' attention. Scorpius rarely wanted to slack off in class with Albus, which was a shame, because Albus always had so many ideas of things to do that would be more fun than class. He poked Scorpius in the side. Scorpius deliberately continued looking ahead, and wrote another line of notes.

This continued for several iterations, until finally Albus took out his new Exploding Snap deck and placed it on Scorpius' desk. Scorpius turned a card over uncertainly, and saw that it was decorated with Albus' father's face. He turned to look at Albus in surprise.

"I know," Albus whispered. "A deck of cards, I ask you. Disgusting, isn't it?"

Scorpius' disapproving mouth twisted into a smile, and Albus felt it again. Something about that smile, and the fact that Albus had brought it out. It made him feel lightheaded.

Scorpius turned back to his notes, and Albus felt normal again.

Albus didn't understand it, and he didn't like it, and the only thing he could think to do about it was talk to Scorpius. After all, Scorpius was his best friend. They had always been able to talk to each other about anything. Scorpius had been very helpful in the past, like in second year when Albus asked him what a Horcrux was, and Scorpius mocked him for a full twenty minutes before leading him to the relevant section of the library. Or in third year when Albus didn't get onto the Quidditch team and told Scorpius what James had said about it, and the next day Scorpius and James got into a shouting match in the hallway, and Albus was annoyed but secretly pleased. Or in fifth year when Albus came to Scorpius and complained that Rose had got a boyfriend and was spending all her time with him, and Scorpius said why did he want to spend time with a Weasley anyway because everyone knew they were idiots, and Albus said "Hey!" and Scorpius said not him, he was a Potter, and Albus said only half a Potter and Scorpius said anyway the point was that it proved that Weasleys were idiots if one of them preferred some boyfriend's company over Albus'. Albus had smiled at that.

So clearly, talking to Scorpius about it was the right thing to do. Scorpius was the smart one, the Ravenclaw, the one who would provide the research and detail and clever spellwork behind Albus' plans. He would be rational about this. He would know what to do.

Albus decided to broach the subject one slow Sunday afternoon, when they were sitting lazily in Albus' dorm room. Scorpius was reading and Albus was checking his Muggle Studies homework against Scorpius', which wasn't really cheating if you were best friends and Scorpius would always be around to supply you with the facts you didn't know anyway. Albus looked up at Scorpius and felt suddenly nervous because he was feeling it again, with the way Scorpius was holding the book in one white hand and propping himself up on his elbow, the way his hair fell back against his neck when he tilted it like that and the flat line of his sloping chest beneath his shirt.

It passed. Albus took a breath.

"Hey, Scorpius," he said, "Listen, I have to talk to you."

Scorpius slanted his eyes towards him and lowered his book a fraction.

"Yeah?"

"There's just... this thing," Albus said, half-shrugging uncomfortably. "It's weird."

Scorpius glanced at his page number and put the book down beside him.

"What thing?"

"Er," Albus said. "I've just been having these, er, these moments of... appreciation."

Scorpius' eyebrows drew together in confusion.

"Appreciation?"

"Sort of," Albus said, beginning to wish he had found someone else to discuss this with after all. "Well, not really appreciation. More like... attraction."

"Attraction," Scorpius repeated, raising his eyebrows.

"Yes," Albus said. "To, er. You. It's bizarre, I know, but it's not all the time. Just occasionally."

"Er," Scorpius said, lifting his head and sitting up. "What?"

Albus felt his face heat up. Stupid Weasley genes.

"That's not really the right way to put it," he said. "It's just, you know, happens to everyone, sometimes you just have these moments of thinking your best friend is pretty and then it passes, right?"

"Uh," Scorpius said.

"Totally normal," Albus added for good measure, in case Scorpius hadn't gotten that point yet.

"Albus," Scorpius said. "Have you considered, you know, do you think you might be somewhat gay?"

"No," Albus said. "No, I already thought of that, but it doesn't happen with any other boys. And boys who are gay, they think more than one boy is attractive, don't they?"

"I'm not sure," Scorpius said, frowning.

"I really think it's just a friendship thing," Albus said. "You know, like we're such good friends that I can appreciate your prettiness."

"See, like that's a rather gay thing to say," Scorpius said. "So that's, you know, you could reconsider there."

"I'm pretty sure I'm not gay," Albus said.

"Huh," Scorpius said. He brushed his hair out of his face, which he did when he was concentrating. Albus loved his concentrating look, all serious and intelligent. It made Albus think he should develop eye problems so he could get intelligent-looking glasses. Just not the Harry Potter frames.

"Well," Scorpius said. "I guess it all depends, then."

Albus waited.

"Either you are experiencing the first stirrings of a homosexual crush on me, or you're just appreciating my manly beauty. And the only way to find out is to test it, right?"

"I," Albus started. "Test what?"

"Whether it's a crush or not. Look, we should keep this quiet. Meet me in the closet behind the fourth floor statue of the house elf wearing socks. Tonight. Midnight."

"What?" Albus said, but Scorpius was gathering his books and leaving.

*

The first time James got caught out after curfew, they had sent a letter home to his parents. Their mother had sent him a furious letter back, filled with phrases like "respecting the rules" and "creating a stable community". Their father had put his name at the bottom, and then a few days letter sent James a private secret letter with tips on how not to get caught.

Albus just put on his Invisibility Cloak and walked out.

He couldn't help feeling nervous, or at least uncertain. It was easy enough to slip out and get to the meeting point, but the thought of what was waiting for him, Scorpius' blond hair and pale skin and an enclosed closet and something nonspecific about gayness and boy bodies and, well, it all made him feel a little weak.

He reached the closet and tapped on the door, heart pounding in his chest. Scorpius opened the door, his lit wand in his hand. Albus always forgot that Scorpius was three inches taller than him until he did something that made him seem tall, like standing in front of Albus in a dark closet grinning with disarming confidence.

"Hi," Albus whispered, pulling off the Cloak. Scorpius pulled him inside the closet and shut the door, dropping the wand on the ground so it lit the whole space.

"You can talk at a normal volume. They don't patrol this wing of the fourth floor on Sundays," Scorpius said.

"How do you know?"

"I can never sleep," Scorpius said, "so I just started following people around at night and I made a schedule. Anyway, that's not the point."

"Wait. You've never been caught? You don't sleep?"

"That's not the point," Scorpius repeated. "Albus, the way I look at this, we've got to do it in a logical manner."

"Do what?"

"First I'll kiss you, and then we'll both rank our feelings on that, and then we'll move on from there."

"Wait—" Albus said but Scorpius reached up and brushed his cheek with one soft hand, and leaned in close.

Scorpius' hair brushed against his forehead, soft and fine. Albus was close enough that he could feel Scorpius' breath, hot and damp, and Scorpius was still looking at him through blond eyelashes. His hand was on Albus' cheek, which made Albus feel enclosed, and then Scorpius' grey eyes shut and he pressed his lips to Albus'. Something inside Albus spasmed.

It wasn't fair for this to feel so good, Albus had been kissed before, this was ridiculous. Scorpius' lips were slightly parted and the pressure of his fingertips on Albus' cheek increased ever so slightly, as if he couldn't help it.

Abruptly, Scorpius pulled back.

"So, what did you think?" he said.

Albus stared at him.

"Er," he said.

"I brought a chart," Scorpius said, leaning down for his bag and fishing through it.

"You kissed me," Albus said.

"I know that, I'm the one that did it," Scorpius said. He straightened, waving a paper. "Here! Look, this is the Hapfen-Schwartzheimer scale of sexual pleasure. You're meant to point to the face that best depicts your current feelings. Post-kiss."

"Can I sit down?" Albus said.

"Oh, sure, of course," Scorpius said. "Actually it might make things more convenient. For, you know, if this goes on."

"Goes on to where?"

"Will you pick a face?"

Albus sat down.

"You have to be honest," Scorpius said, pushing the paper towards him.

"That one," Albus said, pointing.

Scorpius looked at his choice.

"Oh," he said, sounding slightly disappointed. "Okay. Well. That's what I felt too."

There was silence. Scorpius sat.

"Really, only a four?" Scorpius said.

"I thought you said that's what you felt too," Albus said.

"Oh no, it was," Scorpius said. "Maybe a three, even. Just, you know, you're the maybe-gay one. I thought it might be more for you."

"Well, it wasn't," Albus said.

"Maybe we should try again," Scorpius said. "You're supposed to do multiple trials. It gives you more accurate results."

"Alright," Albus said.

Scorpius placed his hands on Albus' shoulders and kissed him again, hard. Albus quickly lost the thread of what was happening, of who was doing what, and everything was warmth and Scorpius' tongue against his and Scorpius' hands on his shoulders and neck. Scorpius' teeth were biting down on his lower lip and Albus pulled Scorpius against him and somehow they fell back against the wall, limbs entangled. Albus twisted one hand into Scorpius' blond hair, tugging slightly. Scorpius slid his hand down from Albus' shoulder and slipped it just inside Albus' shirt, gripping his side, and Albus lost the ability to think because Scorpius' hand was stunningly close to the waistband of his trousers.

Scorpius broke the kiss and extracted himself from Albus delicately.

"How was that?" he said.

Albus felt like whining, like a dog locked outside in the rain.

"That was," he said.

He tried again. "It was. It."

"The chart!" Scorpius said, pulling it out from where it was trapped under Albus' leg.

Albus pointed.

Scorpius's face looked like a window that had been shattered.

"A two?" he said.

"I'm sorry," Albus said. "I think we're just meant to be friends. Isn't that what you felt?"

"Oh," Scorpius said, "yeah. Yes. Two. Exactly."

He folded the chart slowly, running his finger deliberately over every crease.

"I guess I'll just put this away, then," he said.

"Yeah," Albus said.

Scorpius looked up.

"Unless those two times were just weird anomalies," he said. "I mean, you did say that the being attracted to me is only at some moments, right? Maybe we just haven't caught any of those moments."

"You think we should try again?" Albus said.

"Sure," Scorpius said. "I mean, if you're up for it."

Five minutes later Albus was pressed against the floorboards, shirtless, Scorpius on top of him. Scorpius was trailing kisses from the corner of his mouth down to his neck. Albus arched his head back, his breath hitching as Scorpius gently bit down. He slid his hands up under Scorpius' shirt and spread them against Scorpius' smooth back. He pressed his body up against Scorpius' and Scorpius hissed against his neck, a short, helpless sound. Scorpius raised his head and Albus pulled him closer for another kiss. Albus tugged upward at Scorpius' shirt and Scorpius sat up, straddling Albus' hips, to tear it off. He fell against Albus again and Albus was intoxicated by the amount of his skin that was touching Scorpius', the amount of warm weight pressing against his entire body.

Then Scorpius rolled off him.

"So," he said, sitting up and gasping for air. "So, how—how would you rate that?"

Albus took a moment to reassemble his brain.

"I, uh," he said, scrambling up to a sitting position. "Show... show me the chart again?"

Scorpius looked around.

"I don't know where..."

"There," Albus said, pointing to the paper crumpled underneath Scorpius. Scorpius pulled it out and smoothed it against the ground.

"I'd say about a five," Albus said.

Scorpius was quiet for a moment, biting his lip hard.

"A five," he repeated flatly.

"Yeah," Albus said. "But hey, these readings are pretty inconsistent, right? I think we might need a lot more testing."
 
 
 
she had the face of an angel & the body of a devil: harry perverted thoughtsnuclearsugars on January 21st, 2009 01:02 am (UTC)
YES! I love Ravenclaw!Scorpius and how clinical he is in all of the "trials." There were a lot of good lines in here; I like the mention of a house-elf statue wearing socks [Dobby memorial?] and Albus wanting glasses so he can look smart [but not those dreadful Harry Potter lenses]. OH and Harry's face on a deck of exploding snap cards was pure genius! My fav line:

"You know, like we're such good friends that I can appreciate your prettiness."

No, Albus. Not gay at all. =P
nolagal: asstatnamesnolagal on January 21st, 2009 01:08 am (UTC)
I loved the "appreciation" conversation and Scorpius's chart. Very cute!
trichinopoly ash: as/s: you like italdehyde on January 21st, 2009 01:15 am (UTC)
oh my goodness, what a cute fic! al's moments of "appreciation/attraction" were heart-warming to read about, and the trials in the closet were hilariously endearing. well done, mystery author!
Kadollankadollan on January 21st, 2009 01:25 am (UTC)
I loved the humor in this. Well done!
maevemist: albusmaevemist on January 21st, 2009 01:51 am (UTC)
I really liked the tone of this story. I like their history and how easily they interact with each other.

Scorpius and his theories are hilarious and Al's moments are too cute.

Thank you for sharing.
Camden: DrakeGiggleabusing_sarcasm on January 21st, 2009 01:53 am (UTC)
This is absolutely, ridiculously, perfectly adorable!!!!!! I loved every single thing about it!!!! Just a complete delight!

*twirls the Mystery Author*
Linseymaraudersaffair on January 21st, 2009 01:59 am (UTC)
oh my god. this is was so sweet and adorable and amazing! :D
maggie: SAS - Albus chairmarguerite_26 on January 21st, 2009 02:47 am (UTC)
That was so adorable. I'm grinning ear to ear.

So many cute lines, but Meet me in the closet behind the fourth floor statue of the house elf wearing socks!!! That was fabulous.
AMY 凛☆ラブ☆アタックtomatoe18 on January 21st, 2009 02:58 am (UTC)
GUH!!!!!!! *is incoherent due to adorableness of the fic*

"You know, like we're such good friends that I can appreciate your prettiness." -----> WIN WIN WIN WIN WIN!!!!!!

Look, this is the Hapfen-Schwartzheimer scale of sexual pleasure. -- The what? XD But more importantly, how did Scorpius get his hands on one?

"Really, only a four?" Scorpius said.

"I thought you said that's what you felt too," Albus said.
-- I love how much in denial and how clueless they are. :D

... and if you can't tell already, I'm very in love with this fic. :D Thanks for sharing!

Bryoneybryoneybrynn on January 21st, 2009 03:20 am (UTC)
Completely adorable from start to end!
(Deleted comment)
supergreak: Alsupergreak on January 21st, 2009 05:18 am (UTC)
"a lot more testing"
Sneaky, sneaky!
hey hoo, it's Lou!: Disney - Fangirl!heyhoolou on January 21st, 2009 06:52 am (UTC)
*gleeful flaily spazz*
Oh man!! :D Charts! Ravenclaw!Scorpius! Making out in deserted places!
Eeeeee! <3<3<3

This line:
Albus felt his face heat up. Stupid Weasley genes.
made me laugh <3
Indeed, darn those Weasley genes.

Oh boys. They are so wonderfully spot on, and I absolutely love rational!Scorpius with his silly chart, and yes, CLEARLY there needs to be a lot more testing.
Thank you sososososo much for my wonderful story! It made me giggle, and d'awww and grin like a fool. So much awesome, omg!

THANK YOU! *hearts*
Sarah: Triosarahyyy on January 21st, 2009 08:04 am (UTC)
Love, love, love.

This is adorable. I love the humour in it. This is brilliant, mystery author.

And this line = love

or you're just appreciating my manly beauty
the source of all heresiesms_worplesdon on January 21st, 2009 05:06 pm (UTC)
This was wonderful!!! Please, do go on!!!
salviagsalviag on January 21st, 2009 08:08 pm (UTC)
Oh, Scorpius and Albus! I am sure many, many more tests will be necessary! Hundreds! Thousands! (Just don't involve any comparative analysis and no control groups. I feel confident that the two of you will be able to work this out...after much testing.)
lilian_cho: Penguin!Chiyo-chan from Azumanga Daiohlilian_cho on January 23rd, 2009 12:06 am (UTC)
<333
Oh gawd this is so cute and Al is so Slytherin! *loves*

*flails like a flaily thing*
Lyvchiralove on January 23rd, 2009 01:45 am (UTC)
Hehehe, fabulous! I love Scorpius here ... such a Ravenclaw! :D
beatnikspinster on January 23rd, 2009 08:07 am (UTC)
This was so sweet! I love Scorpius's chart, and Albus messing up the results. I also love their conversation when Albus admits his attraction. Very funny!
Chris: Albus Severus Potter: Smirkestioe on January 23rd, 2009 08:49 am (UTC)
Awww, this is so sweet! I loved it. :D
Carla!utteramusement on January 23rd, 2009 08:47 pm (UTC)
Muahaha! Sneaky Albus! He's totally just looking for more testing xD
secretsolitaire: ahahahasecretsolitaire on January 28th, 2009 01:46 am (UTC)
LOL, this is great fun.
Girlfriend Resplendent Valentine: riddle for librariesimkalena on January 28th, 2009 05:39 am (UTC)
Utterly adorable, and for as much as Scorpius is a Ravenclaw, Albus is a TOTAL Slytherin. :D
(Deleted comment)
gabtastic!: P&P: Kiera & friend laughingwhimseywisp on January 28th, 2009 06:03 pm (UTC)
:D :D :D
lotus_lizzy: as/slotus_lizzy on January 28th, 2009 07:01 pm (UTC)
Haha, that sneaky Al. He really is a Slytherin :) I agree with Al, more testing is need :)
laila_ruelaila_rue on January 30th, 2009 02:39 am (UTC)
I was left hanging there...but it was a wonderful story nonetheless. ^^y
just your everyday tragic heroinetray_la_la on January 31st, 2009 06:36 pm (UTC)
so, so cute! scorpius and his chart was inspired! great job!
margottenenbaum: John Lennonmargottenenbaum on February 2nd, 2009 03:51 am (UTC)
Favorite line: "I can never sleep," Scorpius said, "so I just started following people around at night and I made a schedule. Anyway, that's not the point."

Oh I love his Ravenclaw-ness so much. Charts? Trials? Fantastic. I like that you took characters we don't know at all and gave them unique, fully fleshed out qualities. I adored it. And Albus being sneaky about more kissing was great and as a Slytherin should be.
Verdeniaverdenia on February 5th, 2009 01:52 pm (UTC)
*giggle* and Heh and heee! Oh, man, too cute. Al being clueless and Scorpius being a clinical Ravenclaw, and Harry on a Snap card! Hah. Good times.

*memories*
Amandastereosymbiosis on February 7th, 2009 08:43 pm (UTC)
"Either you are experiencing the first stirrings of a homosexual crush on me, or you're just appreciating my manly beauty. And the only way to find out is to test it, right?"

HEE! ♥ I can't keep the grin off my face!
Zebruizebrui on February 28th, 2009 01:37 am (UTC)
So clever and funny and well written! Loved it :)
LJdelorispea on April 12th, 2009 09:39 pm (UTC)
LOL
HE is so a mini!Draco
that was absolutely adorable
'I brought a chart' BAHAHAHAHAHAAHA!
Cearesceares on August 2nd, 2009 10:21 am (UTC)
here from a crackbroom rec...that was adorable! loved the chart idea and the continous retesting
lrndnglrndng on August 7th, 2009 01:57 am (UTC)
OMG so cute! I love how they are the complete and utter stereotypes for their houses

ravenclawygoodnesscharts
deviousslytherin with his i think we need more tests
Crys: buttsexkingzgurl on September 7th, 2009 05:29 am (UTC)
Love this! So many amazing lines and quirks (Harry Potter exploding snap cards, the house-elf statue wearing socks)! And the multitudes of trials... brilliant <3
Elsieelsie on September 13th, 2009 08:55 am (UTC)
What a good little Slytherin Albus is! :D
tigersilvertigersilver on July 23rd, 2010 04:57 am (UTC)
Oh, wicked, wicked boy! Love it!
tigersilvertigersilver on November 6th, 2011 02:51 am (UTC)
I want moar testing! Yes, yes, I do (wheedle). But thank you; that was lovely and fun;>
chocolatte-owl: pic#121586270chocolatte_owl on August 30th, 2013 06:15 am (UTC)
hahahahahaha sly albus~
poor scorpius haha

they're both so adorable~
chocolatte-owl: pic#121586270chocolatte_owl on September 23rd, 2013 04:32 pm (UTC)
hahahaha its so cute how albus thinks he is stealing kisses from scorpius but really, theyre both stealing kisses from each other.