Ginny Weasley was cursed.
It wasn't a fairy tale curse, elaborate and ridiculous, involving spindles and 16th birthdays and dying young.
Hers was much worse.
It took effect from the day of her birth, and would be there all her life. It was continuous, everlasting, and painful.
Ginny Weasley was cursed with brothers. Six of them.
Brothers meant teasing, and pranks, and exclusion. The twins once built a fort and wouldn't let her in, just because she was a girl. It didn't actually bother her much, the twins were always excluding everyone but each other. But as she had left it, rejected, Ron walked past, up to the fort, and just went right in. Ron! Fred and George lived to tease Ron, and all of a sudden he was one of them. Later, Percy had told her that Ron was only included because the twins had made him their butler. They made messes, and only let him in so he could clean them up. She had laughed, and plotted revenge with Bill, but it still stung.
She had been jealous of her friend Jill, who had an older sister, and one younger. The older one always lent her clothes, and liked to dress her up and put make up on her. She had taught her about boys, and painted her nails. Jill had gotten to pass this wisdom on to her younger sister, and play dolls with her. This, while Ginny spent her childhood in a mixture of hand-me-down boys' clothes, and second hand skirts. Her pyjamas consisted of Percy's boxers, and the twins' old shirts.
Ginny's mother had been so excited to finally have a daughter. It was her dream to have a lovely, feminine little girl. Sadly, Ginny wasn't particularly feminine. Molly kept finding recipes for home made creams and facials. She liked to have little at-home spa days, just for her and Ginny. She'd chat on and on, about how nice it was to spend time with her only daughter, just the two of them, and Merlin knew how rare it was she had time to spare on frivolous things like facials, and oh, wasn't this just such fun? This, while Ginny stared longingly out the window at her brothers playing Quidditch. But Molly treasured those days so much, Ginny couldn't bear to ruin them for her. So she smiled, and pretended to like pasting her face in goo.
When Ron had left for Hogwarts, she found life much more quiet. Her days were spent with the few muggle friends she had nearby, and with her mother. She lived for the days when something was sent home from her brothers. Molly never knew that Bill had given Ginny a revealer as a gift before leaving for Egypt. The back of his letters home were always written in invisible ink, for her to read later. He liked to ask her ("the only intelligent female he knew", he said) for advice on girls—not that he didn't do fine on his own. She loved that he came to her, her, a voice of authority! Charlie's pictures of dragons decorated the walls of her room. Percy was fond of sending her advice on things to study before coming to Hogwarts. "That kind of a head start can really pave the way to becoming Head Girl" he'd say. The twins didn't bother with letters. Mischief left no time for petty things like letters. But in her closet, she had a stash of Hogwarts toilet seats, and things they'd stolen from Filch. Ron's notes were usually scrawled requests for her to send things he'd forgotten, like his Martin Miggs comics.
Ginny- When I asked you to send my Chudley Canons poster, I meant the one with Adams scoring, not the one where Buckley was still Keeper. Hurry up and send the right one, Harry still can't even name all the chasers. I think if he can attatch the names to the faces, he'd be able to remember things better. And did you hint to mom about my jumper yet? I don't think I can stand another maroon jumper this year, just make sure you tell her I hate maroon before she starts knitting them. Hogwarts is great, you'll love it next year. Except there's this really bossy girl in our year. You better hope she doesn't fail and end up in your year. Hopefully she'll be expelled. I doubt it though, she's such a know it all, and so fussy about rules. Sheesh. See you at Christmas. Unless we don't. Do you know if mum and dad have decided whether or not they're going to stay home yet? -Ron
Ginny was always torn between relief at seeing his almost illegible writing again, and frustration at being used as a mailing service. Still whether she was taken for granted or not, it was nice to know Hogwarts hadn't completely stolen all her brothers. They still thought of her enough to send her things, now and then. It was enough.
In any case, Ron's first year at school had made her think about her brothers more. The loneliness of that year meant she was no longer able to classify them as the solid entity of "brothers". She realized they all meant something different to her. She never thought she would be really miss them all that much. She had gotten used to having everyone but Ron gone, hadn't she? But Ron's absence made her aware of the void created when the others' left. They actually did have their uses, and she realized they all played a role in her life. For the rest of her life, she would analyze what each brother meant to her.
Bill was her rescuer. When she'd broken one of her mother's favourite mixing bowls, he'd helped her frame the twins for it. He'd even dealt with the twins resulting desire for revenge.
In Egypt, he had gotten her alone as soon as Molly could stop exclaiming about his hair. He'd sat her down, and made her talk about everything to do with Riddle's diary. She had avoided the subject as much has possible with everyone else, but Bill forced it out of her. You see, Bill was the only one of her family who knew how. He tickled her without mercy (in the spot just above her hip, on her right side) until she'd agree to tell him. She should have known he'd approach it just the right way. When getting her to talk, he acted like it was a cute little story about her first kiss. But his eyes were serious, as she spilled the secrets of how Riddle had betrayed her. He listened, and he was her first step towards moving on. Harry had saved her from Riddle, but Bill saved her from his memory.
He was always the one to manoeuvre their mother into letting her stay up just a little bit longer. Sometimes he'd sneak her out late at night, to buy her ice creams from the 24 hour muggle convenience store. While she happily licked the treats, he'd conspirationally tell her stories of the times he'd snuck out to Hogsmeade with his friends—not even Charlie knew how they'd nicked Firewhiskey from the kitchens (the elves used it in their cooking). He gave her directions to the secret tunnel out of the castle he'd found. She couldn't wait until her first year, 'til she could tell Bill she had used it, and share the stories of her adventures. She'd almost cried when she found it had caved in, her second day at school. More than anything, that was what made her realize the distance that had grown between them. It was funny, how the cave in of a tunnel seemed bigger than everything separating her and Egypt.
Just as great was the distance to Romania. Though all of her brothers were older, Charlie was the one she considered her real big brother. Charlie meantbig, calloused handsruffling her hair, good-natured teasing, and various lessons. When she was four, he taught her how to punch properly. "Remember, thumb outside your fingers" he'd say.
He was also her main Quidditch instructor. Before Ginny was old enough to fly on her own, he would take her on his broom with him. Ginny could remember yelling at him to go faster, higher, while Molly screamed at him from the ground to slow down, for Merlin's sake. In Charlie's last few years at Hogwarts, he decided Ginny would be his successor on the Gryffindor Quidditch team. They'd spend hours outside in summers, Charlie training her as Seeker, giving her gentle tips. He was always blown away at how little she needed them. When Bill suggested she'd make a decent Chaser, he hexed him. He insisted Ginny would be the best Seeker Hogwarts had ever seen—except himself, obviously.
When she hit puberty he taught her a rather useful curse which caused impotence in the opposite sex. Though she was beyond embarrassed, he made her promise to practice it.
He went about all these lessons in such a patient, loving manner that Ginny always thought he'd be a teacher after Hogwarts. As much as she hated taking advice from anyone else, she always cherished tips and criticism from Charlie.
Percy saw her as an equal. For Percy, this was rare. He was condescending to everyone. But with Ginny, the truth was—he didn't dare. That girl was always getting the better of Fred and George, a thing definitely worthy of respect. Ginny knew how to get anything she wanted out of anyone in the family. She was smart, talented. Naturally, he saw her as a younger version of himself. Percy saw it as his duty to ensure she wasn't led astray by other, less promising, members of the family. He was fond of providing tips on how to get ahead at Hogwarts. He always lent her his school books, so she could read ahead. He was the one to teach her the Bat Bogey Hex, a thing he liked to take credit for. Until the twins started pointing out that she did it far better than he ever could, so there was no way he could be responsible for her level of expertise. But she was grateful for him. He was sort of like her escape. When the house was too noisy, and everyone too busy for her, she could always retreat to his room and talk. Of everyone in the family, she was the closest to him.
Usually Percy was very protective of his privacy, and hated people going in his room (not that that stopped the twins). But Ginny never bothered him. It was her privilege alone, to go in there, lie on his bed, and read his books. When she was smaller, he would sometimes read her stories before bed. She found out that some of them were actually written by him. Eventually, he used her as a test audience for his writing. When he went to Hogwarts, he'd send home poems for her in letters, or ask advice on the characterizations in his latest story.
Over the years, the letters wiht his writing became less and less frequent. By the time he was made Head Boy, they stopped coming altogether. That was about the time she found she was no longer exempt from his privacy rule. No longer did she take naps on his bed, and their close relationship was lost. Somewhere over the years, they had changed. When Voldemort returned, and he left the family, she refused to think of how they had been before. All the poems he had sent her, she burned in the kitchen fire. As the parchment curled and blackened, she turned her heart from him.
The twins were seen as her bad influence. Though really, she was as much an influence on them as they were on her. Fred and George saw Ginny as a younger version of themselves, like Percy had. Though if you tried to point out the similarities, they would have hexed you. Still, they adopted her as a sort of apprentice. One day, Ginny found them trying to teach Ron how to pick locks. She stayed to watch Fred grow ever more frustrated with Ron's lack of skill, while George took advantage of their younger brother's distraction, and put spiders in all his pyjamas. Ginny practised what she had learned on every lock in the house, and soon became better at it than George. After this discovery, the twins decided she would need a proper education, and appointed themselves teachers.
Quite often, she would play role in their various pranks, and even gave them a few ideas for Weasleys Wizard Wheezes. When Ron wouldn't let her play with one of his toys, they would always help her plot a revenge. Though that may not have been loyalty to their sister, as they just like to prank Ron. Still, Ginny was always sure to steal their brooms when she practised flying in the middle of the night, as a sort of tribute to her instructors in mischief.
Ron was her playmate. Charlie and Bill were too old to want to hang around with him, and Fred and George were, well, Fred and George. There was never one with out the other, and a third was almost unheard of—Lee came the closest to becoming one of them. Ron would have been insulted if you hinted he should play with Percy—he wasn't that desperate. So Ginny and Ron were often grouped together, whether they wanted to be or not.
They got on fairly well, though he could be a bit of an ass. It was just who Ron was, and Ginny accepted that. She even loved him for it. He liked to see himself as her role model, though she already had plenty. Still, she did her best to keep him happily deluded—he already lived in the shadow of five brothers. He was a good companion, and she was always proud to be the one to show him when he was being an idiot. She and Hermione were responsible for giving him the little knowledge of the fairer sex that he had. The problem with Hermione teaching him, was that she couldn't help him when it came to herself. Ginny had quite a few difficult conversations with Ron in her third year—around the time of the Yule Ball. He came for help with his feelings for Hermione, not that he ever even came close to admitting so. Generally he would just glare moodily into the common room fire, and now and then, tentatively ask how Ginny saw Krum. Would she ever want to date him? What was so great about him anyway? These not-quite-conversations would invariably end in Ron stomping off to his dormitory in a huff.
Though Ginny would do her best to help Ron with his "lady problems", she didn't really need any help from him in the romance department. Nevertheless, he saw it necessary to do the whole "overprotective brother" routine. She didn't see how her boyfriends were any business of his, and was exceedingly frustrated by the aforementioned routines. Still, she sometimes found herself hiding a small grin after storming off, leaving him in the middle of one of his displays. Annoying though they were, she found his concern kind of…touching.
Yes, maybe having brothers wasn't such a curse after all. Vexing though they absolutely were…well, they had their uses.
AN: Alright, a small oneshot examining Ginny's relationships with her brothers. I wrote it all tonight, and it's late, so that will be the reason for any typos. Anyway, I figured it was time I put something out, since I've been a member on this site for over a year, and it's been almost that long since I've updated anything. I really do hope to get Consequences sorted out before the summer is over, so we'll see. Please review.
Really, please review. Especially if yuo have some constructive criticism to offer.