Title: That Festive Spirit
Characters: George & Hermione
Prompt: Stockings
Rating: Any Age

That Festive Spirit

You would think it would get easier with time, that the pain would fade, and you would be able to deal with the every day occurrences. To a certain extent it did, it wasn't till a time like this that he realised just how much it still hurt. George could go about his routine in the shop, he could make it through a family dinner with the sad looks, but this wasn't going to be easy.

Everyone tried their best to be understanding, and for the most part they could sympathies, but for him it was different. That they couldn't understand, least they didn't come up to him anymore with the standard 'I know how you feel'. It had gotten to the point where he was certain he was going to seriously maim the next person who said that.

It was these times that were the hardest. He went shopping for those special gifts that they always took such pleasure in buying, alone. There was no one to plan, and plot with. George still managed to find those presents that they used to, but there was no fun in it. The fun was gone from this whole time, he just wanted to go home and crawl into bed; and stay there till this rotten holiday was over.

His whole family chose to walk on eggshells around him, being careful of what to say, or what not to say. He wanted to tell them that it was okay to miss him, to speak about him, he wasn't going to get mad if they did. George wanted to remember him, Fred loved this time of the year. The presents, all the food, and the jokes they could play on everyone. He wanted to remember that, the joy that he took from this season. But they didn't want to, or maybe they did, they just didn't think he wanted to.

They were decorating the house, making it look festive, but they were failing to put the heart into it. The tree was up in the corner, the lights twinkling, all the baubles displayed proudly. There was a small stack of presents underneath it, with Crookshanks inspecting them all. The house looked like Christmas had come, but George wasn't feeling it just yet. So he sat in the corner and watched them all decorate, there was no desire to participate in the farce.

Harry and Ron had been playing chess by the fire for most of the morning, Ginny sitting in the chair near them pretending not to watch them, or Harry. Hermione however seemed to have some spirit inside of her, decorating the house humming carols as she went. She had just come in from the shed, snow dusting her shoulders with a large box in her hands. Pushing past Ron and Harry, she stood in front of the fire, starting to hang the stockings on the mantle.

He didn't think anything of it, they were a standard inclusion in the decorations. That was until she stopped with one in her hand, standing there for several seconds holding it. His stomach dropped when he realised whose it was. No one seemed to notice the pause in her actions, they continued around her like nothing was happening. Hermione turned to him slightly, not meeting his eyes, but he knew she was looking at him.

He felt himself nodding before he knew what the question was, and he felt himself smiling as she hung it next to his. In it's rightful place.