PART 20-WALKING ON AIR
School was over for the year, the year of hell if you asked Brooke, she was glad it was over. She had packed up her trunk and bid farewell to the castle and was happy to board the train that would take her home. The last few months at school hadn't been the easiest; the twins had had to take a little time to adjust to what had happened to the other. Fred had tried to be friendly and keep up his bantering with Brooke but it didn't have the same quip like it used to. Her and George always found themselves looking over their shoulder when they shared affection, not wanting Fred to see. Just because Brooke had chosen George didn't mean it needed to be rubbed in Fred's face at every corridor.
It had taken the remainder of the school year for things to mainly go back to the way they were. The twins had become exactly as they were before, no more awkwardness between them and they were back raising hell in Hogwarts. Fred had given Angelina another chance after weeks of hanging out and getting to know each other better. The relationship had seemed to make Fred better and things between him and Brooke had lost their strain and it was like they were back to where they had been a year ago. Brooke though had her limits with him now, she didn't link arms or touch him too much or kiss his cheek like she use to, she didn't want to send signals and she didn't want to give any wrong impressions.
Things with George had been amazing, stolen kisses in alcoves, homemade present wars each trying to outdo the last, secret rendezvous in the forest to watch the sunrise, and causing Lee various maladies from testing pranks. Brooke never understood why he kept coming back for more after all the side effects he suffered. That was a true friend, one who continued to help even after losing all his hair. Slowly things around them being affectionate in public, and even in front of Fred, waned, with Fred and Angelina holding hands and sharing kisses, Brooke decided it was okay for her and George to do the same. It was almost like the whole thing had been forgotten, or at least purposefully ignored and it was nice to have things back to the way they were. As Brooke was pulling her trunk into the common room, George appeared from the portrait hole and smiled at Brooke.
"I was hoping I'd catch you before you got too far," he said, taking her trunk from her. "I've got to do my quota of good deeds for you."
"You keep count?" asked Brooke.
"Women remember things that guys don't; I always have to make sure I do more things for you, than you do for me."
"Do you really think I'm like other women?"
"You are not like other women, Brooke, but you are a woman."
Brooke kissed George for a moment and then released her trunk to him, before following him out of the castle. As they continued on their path to the train, Brooke couldn't believe that it was going to be their last year at Hogwarts when they returned. It was like her home and to think she wouldn't be returning more than once, left her a little sad. She knew she was being dramatic, after all there still was one more year but after the year she'd had, she was weary of what the next one would bring. George continued to take her trunk onto the train and took it to a compartment where Fred and Angelina were already present. He lugged it into the overhead compartment and they both took the seat across from Fred and Angelina.
"I thought you'd gotten lost," said Fred.
"It's not my fault that Brooke's trunk is heavier than a hippogriff," George teased.
"It's no heavier than yours!" Brooke scoffed.
"I'm almost positive you used a charm on your room to shrink everything and take it with you."
"You're detracting from your score."
"Teasing does not take away good deeds."
"That seems unfair."
"An act is greater than speech."
"I disagree; words can hurt and cause damage, which should take away from the all around score."
"What in the bloody hell are you two going on about?" asked Angelina.
"George is keeping score of good deeds we do for one another so he's always ahead and prevent me from holding anything over his head," replied Brooke.
"The system works," said George.
"It can't work unless I make the rules or else it won't matter, it's the system to keep me happy and I say teasing takes away half of a good deed."
"I agree with Brooke, teasing should detract," Angelina added.
"Back me up here, Fred!"
"I say it should only be taken away if the teasing is genuinely hurtful," said Fred and all four looked to each other and nodded.
"The rules are now updated," George said, clapping his hands for effect. "Feel free to apply them to your own relationship, I would be honored."
Fred grinned and Angelina scrunched her nose cutely at him, causing Fred to tap her nose with his. Brooke was surprised to not feel even just an inkling of jealousy at seeing Fred with Angelina. She knew she would have no right but she thought it would hurt some but she felt genuine joy. Seeing Fred and Angelina happy made her happy and no other feelings seemed to penetrate that. When she turned to George he was sticking his finger down his throat and pretending to barf. Brooke shoved him playfully and he shoved her back and soon they were at battle.
Each one trying to knock the other over as far as possible to the side until someone gave up. Brooke was laughing and George was trying to find ways to tickle her to cause her to lose and when Brooke gave in she turned to see Angelina watching her with a strange expression she couldn't place. Through the last few months Brooke had noticed that Fred and Angelina were more sweet with each other. They were always touching or holding hands or saying nice things and cuddling. Her and George did those things sometimes but Brooke enjoyed the playful bantering and teasing they did with each other as well. She liked guys to be able to be sensitive but that didn't mean she wanted George to be at her every beck and call. Even if she did, she knew George wouldn't like it and relationships were about give and take.
"Where's Lee?" asked Brooke, her fingers now entwined with George's.
"With his new girlfriend, she's got him whipped," Fred replied.
"Apparently guys don't mind since you and George are too," said Angelina.
"Nice one, Ang!" Brooke said chuckling and sticking her tongue out at George as he rolled his eyes. The majority of the train ride was spent talking about summer plans and how they were going to spend their last year at Hogwarts when they returned. Fred and George talked about some new pranks and pranks in progress and Brooke and Angelina were acting like friends. It was nice. When the train ride started getting close to being over, Fred and George decided to go scout for Lee and bring him in to say goodbye. Brooke and Angelina stayed, making Brooke a little nervous of what they'd talk about now.
"Brooke," Angelina said after a slowly forming awkward silence.
"Yeah?" Brooke replied.
"That little shove fight you had with George, do you enjoy doing things like that?"
"I've grown up having little fights like that so it's normal for me, it actually is fun though. Being a competitive person, it brings out the competitiveness in me."
"Do you think...do you think Fred would like us to do things like that?"
"He's a jokester and prankster but Fred is also the more...persuasive of the twins. It's pretty easy to convince him to get him to do what you want without much of a fight. George likes to tease and tends to be more sarcastic before he eventually gives in. Fred would be fine with what you're fine with but that also doesn't mean he would object to something out of your comfort zone."
"I don't want to do things to make him unhappy."
"You're not, Ang, trust me, Fred is completely happy with you."
"Do you really think so?"
"I know so."
Brooke leaned forward and patted Angelina's hand for comfort and then saw movement outside in the corridor and a moment later Lee and the twins were coming into the compartment. Lee fell down next to Brooke and wrapped an arm around her shoulders, shaking her slightly.
"So I imagine I will be seeing you frequently this summer as always?" asked Lee.
"Absolutely, Lee!" Brooke said, squeezing his nose. "My dad has decided we need a pool so bring your bathing suit when you come over. It might just end up being a sprinkler in the grass when my dad decides a pool is too much work but we can hope."
"If I offer my service do you think we can get that pool?"
"You can try."
"What about you, Ang, what's your summer plans?" asked Lee.
"It's open ended right now, I don't have anything really planned except visiting Fred," Angelina replied.
"Then I'll see you a lot as well! The expansion of our group is definitely an improvement."
"Speaking of," said Brooke. "When do we get to meet your significant other?"
"Never, I'd rather you not scare her away," Lee replied.
"Lee, come now, I am the nicest person when it comes to your girlfriends."
"It's not you I'm worried about, it's the other two."
Lee pointed his thumb at the twins and they feigned disbelief and both folded their arms and turned away from Lee.
"I see your point," Brooke said, grinning.
"Hey!" the twins shouted indignantly and Lee and Brooke chuckled and Brooke went to George and Lee went to Fred and they wrapped their arms around them and hugged them tightly.
"We're just teasing," said Brooke.
"I am taking a point away," George said, pulling Brooke from his back and into his arms.
"You better not, what you said to me earlier was way worse."
George covered Brooke's mouth so she couldn't argue and she rolled her eyes at him and turned to see Lee and Fred in a headlock battle and they quit their argument to watch and root for them. When the whistle blew, signaling the train ride was over it was like an instant mood killer. Everyone looked downtrodden and Lee bid them farewell and left and Brooke returned to sitting on the bench and Fred and Angelina began talking quietly to each other. Brooke looked at George and raised an eyebrow and leaned close to him.
"We should pretend like we're talking about important things like them," Brooke whispered.
"What should we talk about?" asked George.
"How soon can I expect you flooing into my house?"
"Molly won't let you go your first night back."
"I'll sneak away."
"I like Molly, I don't want her being mad at me for taking away her baby boy, come visit me tomorrow, give her today."
"That you care about things like that is why you are amazing."
"That you listen and agree with me is why you are amazing."
"We're both amazing."
Brooke pulled George in for a hug; resting her head on his shoulder and just letting him comfort her while she felt the train slowing down. All it took was a hug for her to be completely content and happy. She could just feel the connection between her and George and the way he smelled seemed to linger on her when he was gone. It was nice having that reminder of him for a few hours after he'd gone. Brooke hated hurting Fred by choosing George over him but she knew she made the right choice, she could just feel it whenever she was with him.
She didn't know for sure if she would have felt that way with Fred but something inside her told her she wouldn't have. When Brooke pulled away George kissed her on the forehead and then stood up and grabbed their trunks, since George had his trunk Brooke had to lug hers. They all went in a line out of the train and onto the platform, stepping off to the side to say their final goodbyes. Brooke set her trunk down and then hugged Angelina briefly and then did the same with Fred, not letting anything last for too long.
"I'll see you both this summer," Brooke said, and Angelina and Fred both went a different direction and Brooke knew it was because they wanted to say goodbye to each other without her and George seeing them.
"I'm going to miss you until tomorrow," said Brooke, wrapping her arms around George's neck.
"I'm going to miss you until tonight," George teased.
"Alright, alright, just curious if you remembered."
"I remember everything you tell me, George Weasley."
"I still can't believe you chose me, Brooke, and I've never been happier than I have been these last few months with you."
"Neither have I."
Brooke pressed her lips to George's and kissed him long enough to be happy but short enough that people weren't staring.
"Ugh, get a room!" Bailey said, and Brooke saw her emerge from the train.
"Isn't that more disturbing of an image, Bails?" asked George and Bailey turned bright red and Brooke giggled.
"I better go, me and Bailey are supposed to always greet the parents together so that it seems like I'm watching her all the time as they demanded," said Brooke.
"See you tomorrow," said George.
Brooke gave George one last kiss and then looped her arm in Bailey's and they began to walk to the barrier together.
"It all worked out," said Bailey.
"It did," Brooke replied.
"Will you make next year less eventful?"
"Oh, Bails, I sure hope so."
"Good, cause I'm all out of good advice."
"I highly doubt that."
Brooke knocked her shoulder with Bailey's and then looked to the barrier and then back to Bailey and they both stopped and looked at each other. Bailey knew exactly what Brooke was thinking and a moment later they were both racing to reach the barrier first.
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OMG! It's finished! Finally! It's taken a really long time, this I know, but finally it is finished and I hope it is finished on a happy note. There is, and will not, be a sequel or plans for a sequel. But there is a possibility of a one-shot if I get inspiration or feel like it needs one but there is nothing like that in the works. Let me know if the ending satisfied you guys and if not tell me what it was missing and maybe that will be the one-shot. This story is one of my favorites because I still remember starting it with my friend Addict so many years ago and even though I wrote the remainder on my own, I still consider it our story because we thought of the idea together. So yeah, yay! It's completed and I'm so happy that it is!
P.S. I suggest everyone listen to Walking On Air by Kerli, Kerli is an amazing artist and her music is inspirational and beautiful. Be warned, if you like Walking On Air, you just may become a Moonchild like me. :) You're welcome.
For copyright reasons, and in case you all were curious, I am going to name the bands whose songs I used in each chapter, starting from Part 1. I own neither the songs or the bands. Boston, Dierks Bentley, Dr. Hook, Evanescence, Peggy Lee, Jimmy Eat World, The Pierces, Linkin Park, Fallout Boy, Slipknot, Pink, The Pierces, 311, The Supremes, The Carpenters, Ella Fitzgerald, Linkin Park, Mary MacGregor, VersaEmerge, && Kerli.