Written not for the Boy Who Lived, but for the Boy Who Laughed.
A sneaker without laces. A pencil with no paper. A firework without fire. A broom without a rider. A wand without an owner. A leaf without a tree. A foot that used to be feet. A bow without an arrow. An ocean with no shore. A book with no pages. A face with no smile. A heart with no beat.
A brother without a twin.
As he stood there on that dim, gray morning, with the drizzling rain coming down on him, George Weasley's mind was racing. His thoughts were not on the coffin before him, nor the people gathered around him. His thoughts where not on who lay inside that suffocating box, nor the wizard who was speaking over the coffin, nor the many looks and tears people were sending his way.
His thoughts were on Chocolate Frogs.
Only once in his entire life had George opened up a Chocolate Frog container to find that it had no Famous Witch or Wizard trading card. Only the small chocolate sweet was in the tiny purple container.
George now remembered how odd it had felt. How flawed it had seemed. As he stood there now, it seemed to him that a Chocolate Frog without a card was as much of a malfunction as George Weasley was without Fred.
A loud sob shook George roughly out of his thoughts. Before him his mother was bereft, her face hidden completely in his father's shoulder. Next to them was Percy, his large glasses sliding on his face through the silent tears streaming down his cheeks. Charlie was beside him, and beside him in turn were Fluer and Bill. Ginny was on the other side, her small face silent, dry and stony as she gazed unblinkingly at the coffin before her. Her hand was gripped tightly with Harry's, who was looking quite tired and bruised, but who had refused to stay in bed for this day.
Around the rest of the circle were people he had barely noticed come- Ron and Hermione, were, of course, there, along with just about every member of the Order and three-thirds of the DA. The old Quidditch team had come, along with a dozen or more faces which he had yet to take in. All he knew was that everyone stood there, wearing somber black while gazing sadly upon the final bed of the greatest man George had ever known.
Part of him wanted to rebel, knowing that the somberness, the quietness, the seriousness of the situation was not what Fred would have wanted at all. But the other part told him that this is what his cherished ones wanted- a peaceful funeral, a private time among loved ones to remember the son, the friend, the brother. He knew that Fred would have wanted them to have that.
The old wizard had stepped down by now, his part done, his official duties completed. He had efficiently told the life story of a boy he had never met without using any details except the frequent use of the words 'noble', 'loyal', and 'brave'. George could not wonder how many times he had said these exact words for other people. Had he used them at the funerals of all the people killed that night? Was he to go to a funeral not more than two days later for Lupin and Tonks and hear these same words thrown back at him with the same blank, impersonal feeling they held now?
George cleared his throat and stepped forward, to the confusion of the old wizard. He was not used to having people break his funeral ritual. But George could care less about funeral rituals. This was Fred. And George would not let him leave forever without talking to him, about him. Telling everyone here about the man who really was Fred Weasley. The man who really was his twin. The man who had died, so others may live.
And as George stepped out into the middle of the black-clad circle, no one argued. No one questioned him. They all just turned their gazes expectantly upon the hollow looking boy in the bright purple robes who gazed longingly down at the grave before him.
"I'm not wearing black" he said simply. "I'm wearing purple." The crowd continued to gaze at him, and the tears seemed to stop for a moment.
"I'm wearing his favorite color- my favorite color. Our favorite color. But that's not the reason I chose to ignore the strict dress code required of funerals as I dressed this morning in a room that seemed too empty. I wore purple because it's bold. It's daring. It's fun. Those three words describe Fred more than any others I can think of.'
"If Fred were here today, watching us all cry over a body, he would laugh at us. He would Apparate right behind mum to scare her. He would set off a dung bomb under Percy's feet. He would try to sell as much merchandise to Luna as possible. In the short, he would not have wanted these tears of sadness. Fred loved the tears of joy, the tears of mirth, the tears of laughter." George paused a moment to clear his cracking voice.
"And it is with the wishes of my other half, my better half, my twin, that I ask- no, I implore- that you not waste time mourning a body. It is, after all, only a body. Just a being of skin and bone, with appendages. For one can live without their appendages. Without their hand, without their leg. Without their ear. But the body is only our temple. Only a container for our essence. And an essence is never dead. It lives on in the world, living within those it loves. Fred is still very much alive, still laughing merrily within all of our hearts. In the years to come when we laugh, when we smile, Fred will laugh with us. When we see a funny sight, we will all think of Fred. And when I think of that night, that horrible night, I will not think at first of the Boy Who Lived. I will think of the Boy Who Laughed."
"So I would now like you to all laugh with me. Laugh with me, smile with me, rejoice with me, celebrate the man who Fred is, not the man he was. And as we all join together with our hearts light and our voices in laughter, I promise you that we will all hear Fred laughing along inside every single one of us."