This is my first Molly Weasley oneshot, and technically, my first Weasley story that branches over to every member of it. It takes place a few months after the Final Battle. The dates listed in this story may not be correct, but I did my research and tried to have every date as accurate as possible. I hope you enjoy it!
Words in italics are flashbacks!
She couldn't step into her twin sons' old bedroom without the ghosts of their past calling out to her. More than seventeen years of memories were tossed about this room, far too carelessly at that. Fred and George never knew what personal items their poor old mother would treasure when they were gone.
…Before the war, Molly took the term 'gone' as the twins having moved out, raising families, and handling jobs. For one half of the troublesome duo, this was true. For the other half, 'gone' meant having his soul ripped from his body in full battle, and his body being buried underground.
Molly stepped forward, laundry basket in tow. George's things were long gone from the premises, he having come to take them the previous day. Only Fred's belongings remained – the belongings of his early childhood that he had found unnecessary to take to Diagon Alley with him.
A broken toy broomstick lay abandoned on the window seat. Molly scooped the halves of the toy up, and cradled them in her arms. The day the twins received their toy broomsticks was still etched clearly in her mind.
April 1st, 1984
Arthur hurried into the kitchen to find his wife using her wand to wrap up two identical toy broomsticks. Arthur grinned and joined Molly at the counter. "Are the presents almost ready, dear?"
"Yes, they are," Molly finished off the last of the wrapping and handed one package to Arthur. "Are the children waiting in the garden?"
"They're all stocking up on birthday cake."
Molly laughed and took the other package into her arms. Her twin sons' birthday was always a hectic day, what with the wrapping of gifts, and the twins thoughtfully playing out pranks on their family. With today being their sixth birthday, Fred and George were old enough to know that buying several gifts was often too expensive for their parents, and having to buy a double amount of gifts for their birthday cost even more money. It had become an unofficial tradition that the twins would each receive a store bought birthday gift, and a homemade one.
The twins had already been given the bright blue pajamas Molly had knit for them. They and the other three children (Bill and Charlie were fourteen and twelve, and were away at school) were scarfing down sugary sweets in the yard. Molly and Arthur paraded outdoors, each holding one of the wrapped broomsticks. They led the other children in another chorus of 'Happy Birthday' before placing the gifts in front of the twins.
Fred always grew hyper and excited upon digesting sugar, and had his present unwrapped before George could even take in the curiosity of what the wrapping paper hid.
"A broomstick!" Molly had to beam at her son's lit eyes. "Just what we wanted, eh, George?"
As Arthur immediately went into a lecture about how these were only toy broomsticks and they could not levitate as much as normal ones, Molly took in the twins' faces. Fred was practically bouncing in his seat, eager to test his new toy. George, however, was solemnly taking in every word of his father's.
'I can't trust a six-year-old child who is too serious,' Molly thought musingly as she compared Fred to George. 'Fred knows how to act his age.'
"He acted too much like a six-year-old after that," Molly said aloud, reminiscing on how the twins grew older and both acted less mature than they should have been.
Gently laying the broomstick halves back down, Molly ventured over to the floor underneath Fred's empty bed. It was dusty, and the dust had spread to the items on the floor. Outstretching her hand, Molly clutched an unknown item and pulled it out. It was the picture of their entire family taken in Egypt, almost five years ago. The nine faces of herself, Arthur, and the seven children waved jubilantly at her, all appearing more youthful than they currently were. Fred and George shared knowing looks in this photo, and Molly now knew why. Shortly after the picture was taken, the twins would attempt to lock Percy in one of the ancient pyramids.
July 21st, 1993
"Percy? Percy Weasley, where have you gone?" Molly continued to swerve on her heel, frantically gazing around the barren land of sand they were in.
Thirteen-year-old Ron approached his mother warily. "What is it now, Mum? You spotted another bewitched mummy?"
"No!" The vein in Molly's neck throbbed in annoyance of her son. "It's Percy! He's vanished!"
"He's not the only one," Ginny pointed out. "I haven't seen Fred and George since we took the picture."
Molly wailed impatiently, and set off among the numerous pyramids in search of her sons. It figured that the twins would find some way to persuade Percy to disappear with them!
"Mum!" George appeared from behind a pyramid, looking slightly flushed, and guilty of the most recent crime he and his twin had committed. "What are you doing?"
Molly's face grew as red as her hair. "What is going on, young man? Where are Fred and Percy?"
"No!" Another voice rang off, from a slight distance off. "Fred, what – you – FRED!"
Molly shot George a death stare, and dragged him along with her as she ran off in the direction of the screams. Eventually, the two came across the most menacing-looking and dark pyramids they had seen on the trip. The entrance was a sliding, brick door that was in danger of sealing at any moment. Fred was seen at the entrance, pushing a stumbling Percy into the pyramid.
"Fred Weasley!" Molly roared. She yanked out her wand. "Accio Fred and Percy!" The two boys glided in the air towards her, being pulled by the force of the spell. Percy had sand all over him, the lenses of his eyeglasses so sandy that he probably couldn't even see through them. Fred still had an achieving smirk on his face.
Molly then aimed her wand towards the pyramid entrance, muttering a closing spell under her breath. As she whirled around to face Fred, her son's face burst into a grin. "Why, Mum, you simply ruined it for old Perce. He's always wanted to study pyramids. I was about to grant him with that opportunity."
Choking back tears, Molly placed the yellowing picture on top of the robes in her laundry basket. Maybe she would frame the picture after placing a youth spell on it – then perhaps the color in the photo would be restored, and the wrinkles would decrease. That was why she always adored magic – it fixed minor mistakes, ones that just made life look and seem better.
But why couldn't there be magic strong enough to keep loved ones safe, or a spell able to convince children to stay out of danger, no matter how old they are? It had been Fred's choice to fight, and as much as Molly longed to whisk he and George back to Diagon Alley, she knew that it was their time to prove their skills. It wasn't until her heart dropped and her skin turned cold upon seeing Fred's motionless body that she regretted her actions. She was his mother! She could have done something to save him…
May 2nd, 1998
As time seemed to pass by far too slowly, a halt in the battle approached the warriors. You-Know-Who and the Death Eaters had seemed to vanish, but rumor had it that they were plotting their next move in the Forbidden Forest. Molly ran helplessly through the familiar halls of the school, searching for any family member or close friend. Countless thoughts crashed over her – she worried of the deaths of her children, or injuries of Arthur or Order members. Where were they?
"Molly!" a voice rang out, and Arthur came running at her from the other end of the hall. His hair was rumpled, and his eyes were bloodshot. It was if he had aged ten years in the thirty minutes since they had last seen each other.
"Oh!" Molly waited for her husband's name to automatically spill out, but it could not. She was too grateful to see him. "My goodness-"
She flung her arms around him, and buried her face into his shirt. Arthur returned her hug tightly, stroking her flyaway hair while holding back tears. Despite their indescribable feelings on seeing each other, worry lines were etched into their foreheads – their children were still scattered among the school, in unknowable condition.
Ginny had already disobeyed them by sneaking out of the Room of Requirement – they did not know why, but both had seen her fighting one of the Death Eaters. She was their tough, little girl – but was she tough enough to take on a Dark wizard?
Ron was most likely with Harry or Hermione, or both. He was bound to be one of the most targeted, what with You-Know-Who's horde knowing of his closeness to Harry.
Neither had seen the twins during battle. Who knew where they were?
Percy had arrived, seeking to make up with all of them. Molly had embraced her son and wept over him as much as she could before going into battle. She thanked Merlin for her son's change of heart.
Charlie was not present at the moment, but it would be unnatural for him not to show up. Molly had a dreading feeling that he'd appear sometime soon.
Both Bill and Fleur were here, most likely staying together as much as possible. Molly feared that one of them would become gravely injured, or even worse, killed, causing the other to go into deep mourning over the loss of a spouse. It would have been better if the two had stayed at Shell Cottage – did Molly and Arthur really deserve having to fret over the whereabouts of seven biological children, and three others, what with them caring for Fleur, Harry, and Hermione so much?
…Arthur was leading her down to the Great Hall, where everyone was meeting up, and where the dead were being laid.
The next few moments happened in silent, blurred actions. Percy came running at his parents, eyes red, his body language saying it all. Molly had cried out, and nearly collapsed, but was dragged by Arthur and Percy into the Hall. She could see mothers and friends weeping over their dead, and her heart then dropped. Fred was lying on the stone floor, pale-faced, his chest still. George hovered over him, clutching his hand, staring at his brother in disbelief.
Molly felt a salty trickle of tears run down her cheeks, and she didn't even bother to dry her eyes. She let the tears fall onto her clothing, and she allowed her eyes to grow watery and red.
She rose from Fred's bed, tucking the laundry basket underneath her arm. Making her way to the door, she paused at the exit, and turned to face the room once more.
Ghosts of a child's past stared back at her – a broken toy broomstick, a once-slept-in bed, a Beater's club, a Chudley Cannons poster, purposely stained dress robes, and a list of Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes merchandise. Molly would cherish these 'ghostly items', seeing them as the true key to her son.
But she only wished for one ghost to appear – the ghost of Fred Weasley.
And he did not.
I thought that the ending was a little abrupt, but I am mostly quite happy with the way this turned out. I got the idea at midnight when I was trying to fall asleep, and the idea wouldn't go away, so I just had to get up and write the idea in my notebook before I'd forget it.
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