Disclaimer: All characters and setting belong to JKR. I just play with her ideas
That's what they
were thinking when they met her. She remembered it clear as day,
polite surprise etched insincerely across their faces.
What happened to Penelope? became the next logical progression, and that one seemed to be directed to her. Audrey could offer no explanations, but the weight of comparison lay heavy in her thoughts. Because really, they were right – what had happened to Penelope?
Percy remained tight-lipped; offended that anyone – his family, his friends – would second-guess him. The most important thing, he repeated pompously every time, was that he was in love with Audrey.
The subtext: Penelope? I don't want to talk about it.
But Audrey did, and because she was Audrey she was allowed to persist. If she was going to be an afterthought – because really, upon further consideration everyone found her lovely and perfect for Percy – then Audrey wanted to know why.
She asked him one
night, several years later, on finding herself alone with him in the yard of the Burrow. Molly
had herded Hermione and Ginny inside after dinner, because the last thing anyone
wanted was for them to catch a chill – chills were never good for
babies – and everyone else had followed, scooping up children and
animals and plates, because Molly was the matriarch, and everyone
did as they were told.
Audrey had a great respect for Molly.
The back-door closed with a soft thud, and then, they were alone.
"Perce, what ever happened to Penelope?"
He stood by the low
stonewall, gazing idly into the field beyond. He'd never brought
Penelope home to his family; but Audrey was different, special, and
although he could not explain it, for the first time in many years
Percy found himself desperately seeking his family's approval.
He shook his head sadly at the night sky.
"Nothing happened. We just…. Fell apart. It happens sometimes, so I hear," he replied absently, slipping an arm around her and drawing close. "The thing is – I didn't really mind when we did. You, though – I'd mind if you slipped away."
She knew what he
meant. Together, they watched the silent field, stars twinkling
Sometimes, things happened for a reason, however nonsensical they appeared at the time.
The past was irrelevant – only the here and now mattered.
And perhaps, some things were just meant to be.
Note: Because I was thinking about the outcry against JKR revealing more information than she needed to, and it occurred to me that Audrey should get her own say in the matter…
Very random little ficlet, hope you like it! What do you think?