After losing an ear I thought I could take on any form of pain, because any form of pain ought to be less than that of losing an ear. Key words: ought to be.
Then Bill got married. That was pain too, but pain of a different sort; I remember us having a conversation about this on their wedding day, and how different life was going to be without him to lead us, to guide us, to show us the right path. No offense to Fleur, of course…
Shortly after, Harry, Hermione, and our youngest brother left us, too. We had both been a bother to him, but just as much a bother as a brother. When I saw him Disapparate I thought, There goes another member of the family, off to face the dangers of the world…And I wondered what I would have done if Ron had been you, if you and I were separated. That was when I realized I had discovered the one form of pain I would not be able to live with: a life without you.
Mentally reviewing the layout of our family over Christmas was a difficult experience. Ginny was home because it was too dangerous at Hogwarts, Ron was still off some-god-knows-where, Percy was working at the Ministry without ever attempting to even come in contact with us, Charlie was still dealing with dragons in Romania, Bill was with his lovely wife at Shell Cottage, and Mum and Dad were at the Burrow, making do with the small provisions they had, and being tracked all the while. But you were still with me, and as long as that stayed true, I would stay content.
You know, the best times I had were with you, working in the shop together, inventing the wildest creations in the Wizarding world…being the twins we were. I remember all those early mornings we shared, grudgingly urging each other to get up at six in the morning to get the shop ready for business. I remember every wink, every smile, every rumbling laugh, every back slap, every trick, every punch line, every coffee - you liked yours piping hot with a teaspoon of sugar, no more, no less.
Ever since you… bloody hell, I can't bring myself to write it, much less speak it…
Fred, ever since you died, I've been dying as well. Each day, each minute, is highlighted by your absence in me, and I feel it everywhere I go. I tried to distract myself by doing other things. I would cook, I would run, I would bring my finger as close to the flame of a candle and hold it there until the burning became too much; at times, I still do. Nothing worked, and nothing ever will work, because nothing in this world can compare to you, and to what you did to me.
Everyone misses you, Freddie. Ron, Ginny, Mum, everyone. They grieve for you, they mourn, they cry. But their grief can't come close to mine. They didn't know you like I did, they never felt like I did around you. You were my partner in crime, partner in laughs, jokes, and mishap. Twins for me meant that we were a single heart, beating for two, but as one. And now, someone's come along and ripped that heart in half, shredded it to bits, and no one can help pick up the pieces because you're gone. The heart beats feebly, sadly, because half of it is missing, a half that can never be replaced, a half that lies decaying in this garden.
Yes, we buried you in the garden, alongside Remus and Tonks. It was the most beautiful day of the year, July the 18th, and the sun shone with anguish and sorrow and terrible beauty upon all of us. I read your epiphany – oh god, Fred. You looked so peaceful, the sunlight stroking your fading cheeks. So, so beautiful.
I cried more than I ever had, I stayed by your grave like Harry at Dobby's, but that feels like a lifetime ago and so much has changed. I cried over you, protected you, kissed the dirt above your head. Time passed, and time still passes. Relentlessly I drag and stumble through each day, trying to collect whatever remains of me. But everything I do is for you. Because you're gone, because you're safe at last, I have to keep living for the both of us.
Fred, I want you to know how much I love you. Every day with the rising sun I love you, and every day with the setting sun, I still do. And that's never going to change. Though I'll continue to grow and learn and live without you next to me, I'll never forget you. I'll get married and start a family and retire, and think of you with each sunrise and sunset. Even though you sleep in Earth's arms and Heaven's cradle, you're still with me – in my half of the frail heart.
Good night, Fred. Sleep tight within the folds of the sky. I'll always remember you, always and forever…my twin, my broken half, my sustenance, my heart, my brother…
I love you, Freddie. I love you.