written for the ilvermorny 'beaded bag: alphabet soup,' the tgs '12 days of christmas,' and 'adopt a reindeer'

ilvermorny:

prompts:

B:

(color) bordeaux

(thing) bouquet

C:

(song) Call It What You Want, Taylor Swift, reputation

D:

(emotion) distress

tgs:

12 days prompt:

6. six geese a laying: write about christmas at the burrow

adopt a reindeer prompt:

write about a feast gone wrong

school, house: hogwarts, slytherin

points (total) 15

word count: 709

a/n: i was already going to listen to reputation while writing this so i kind of loved the prompt; also this is really crappy don't mind me

. . .

"My castle crumbled overnight —

I brought a knife to a gunfight"

Taylor Swift, Call It What You Want

. . .

The Burrow is quite a fitting name for a house, because a family of Weasleys lives in it. It's quite a rickety, long structure, and there is a multitude of redheads in its innards — though recently some other notable additions to the family include one that's blond, one, brunette, and another one, this time inky-black.

And the blond's never lived in the house, really, but she lives with her redhead husband in a place called Shell Cottage. The brunette lodges there occasionally but can now be seen there more often, and then there's the one with black hair who's pretty much just living there now — the brunette and the black-haired boy are part of the Weasley clan in everything but name.

(The blond is part of the family, but she's there by name, so she doesn't really count in the same category as the others.)

But of course, it's Christmas, so everyone naturally returns to the Burrow, where the Christmas celebrations are hearty and marked with large bouts of happiness and feasts.

(Everyone's looking for a little happiness these days, aren't they?)

So there's a little something about this Christmas that's different from all the others: that poignant, tangible absence of that life of the party. He's not coming back. But the others do, and they sit down at the table and greet Arthur and Molly, and the rest of the Weasleys laugh, albeit a little awkwardly, and then they sit down at a table and talk, talk, talk.

"So how is Gringotts treating you?"

"Well, well...I've heard, Percy, you finally got married; where's the lucky girl? I didn't even see the wedding, who caught the bouquet!"
"We're not married, just a little family exaggeration — but I don't know, as soon as she's ready I'll bring her home and you can fawn all over her, yeah?"

"Oh, Ronald, do chew with your mouth closed!"

"I imagine you'd like his mouth closed over yours."

"What — no! Shut up — Harry James Potter, stop snickering like that!"

And then the wine pops open and the bordeaux liquid goes pouring into glasses —

"Ginny, you're still underage. No wine for you!"
"Oh, come on, Mum! I'm practically seventeen anyway!"

"Practically does not mean you are."

"You're like this all the time! I remember, you let Fred —"

She shuts her mouth quickly, realizing her mistake, but Ginny's too late. A blanket of repressed emotions and distress settles over the feast.

"Oh," she says hastily, "forget I said anything, I don't need wine, anyway —"

Ron has gone quite pale in the face, thinking of his brother and the moment that he died, at the hands of a Death Eater's curse, and he growls, "Forget? I can't forget, Ginny —"
"Ron, I didn't mean it. Just...forget about it, okay?"

"You're asking me to forget about my brother! How can you —"

"I'm not, Ron, I'm just asking you to forget about it for just a moment so we can all eat in peace."

"Oh, children," Molly placates, "just let it go, and eat your food."

"I can't, Mum! I can't!" Ron explodes, and storms off to his room. A worried-looking Hermione rushes after him, and Harry, concerned, follows.

Ginny purses her lips. "I just made one little slip, Mum. Just a little."

"It's all right, darling. It's all right," consoles Arthur.

The other guests are looking like something in a mix between shocked and hurt.

"Oh, I'm so sorry for both of them…"

"Mum," Bill says, "it's alright —"

"But it isn't! Ron had no right, I tell you, to just erupt like that! He just didn't. Everyone here has been through Fred's death, and Ron doesn't have it worse than anyone else. He just doesn't have any regard for anyone else!"

"Eet eez really not a prohblehm," mutters Fleur. "Non, not at all…"

"I think," suggests Charlie, "we should just light up the tree and put up the star and be done with it. And maybe Ron'll feel better when he gets a present."

(He doesn't, of course. But they put up that star anyway and they give each other presents anyway and maybe those little holes in their hearts close up, just the tiniest fraction.)