Disclaimer: I don't own anybody you recognize.

For the Song of the Day prompts, with the song The Only Exception by Paramore, and the prompts aqua, casanova, and logic :)


Maybe I know somewhere deep in my soul
that love never lasts
And we've got to find other ways
to make it alone

-:-

As a little girl, Molly had been her mother's favorite.

She was the sweet-tempered, quiet twin masking her heart in ice, all prettypretty flowers and shy little smiles and mamma's blue eyes. Whereas Lucy, with her boundless energy and passion and dreamy smiles was much more Weasley, much more Percy's favorite.

And maybe Molly shouldn't have been surprised when Audrey took her, and just her, to Greece after the divorce.

-:-

It's quite a striking image, watching your parents face off. When you're only seven, it feels a little like the world has stopped spinning and it's just you and your sister and them, fighting, yelling, screaming, and the one thought that pops into her mind is They're not being very good role models.

She's only seven.

"Stop yelling!" Audrey demands of her husband, blond hair whipping around her furiously like a tempest of ice. "You'll wake the girls!" Something in her voice has steel hidden inside, and it makes Molly shiver and clutch Lucy closer as they huddle outside the kitchen, eavesdropping with horror growing inside them.

"You're the one who's yelling!" Percy snaps back, running a hand through his red hair in frustration before he removes his glasses and begins furiously cleaning them as if making them sparkle would help in the argument. "You know what, Audrey, this clearly isn't working. We need to – "

He hesitates, his words breaking, and it's almost like he doesn't want to, but his blue eyes glint, and Molly, even at seven, can understand that he wants to, that he doesn't love her mother anymore, and her whole life is about to be ripped up and stomped on because her parents don't love each other anymore.

" – get a divorce," Audrey finishes grimly, her words softer but colder at the same time, sending a chill down Molly's back with their intensity and the way the meaning burns in her heart. "Yes, I know. We should go to sleep."

Percy sighs, rubbing a hand over his face. "Yes. We should. I – good night, Audrey." And for a moment, Molly thinks he wants to say something else, something like I love you, but he doesn't, and his words ring of finality and leaving, and it hurts more than the time she fell out of a tree and skinned her knee.

"Good night, Percy," sighs Audrey, and Lucy drags Molly back to their room before their parents can catch them so they can pretend to be asleep, and Molly lies in her bed that night and thinks about leaving and love and why her world had stopped spinning, and she wonders why this is all happening.

She never does find a good answer.

-:-

"Come on, Molly," Audrey whispers to her the night of their move to Greece. Molly, still only seven and not quite understanding that her mother was taking her away forever, only blinks up at Audrey, alternating her blue-green gaze between her stoic mother, her equally-stoic father, and her tearful sister. "Are you ready to leave?"

Lucy's crying up a storm behind Percy as their father looks on impassively, only a twinge of pain flashing across his face when he looks at Molly, in her pretty blue sundress and white sandals and her curls like fire down her back, and, looking back, Molly wonders if he truly loved her in that moment or if it was just a matter of pride that he hadn't won custody of her, too.

"I'm ready," she says solemnly, taking her mother's hand, seeking warmth against the chilly winds and the cool starlight simmering on her skin, because everything hurts right now, even the things that are supposed to be pretty. "Are we going to see Grandpa and Grandma?"

Audrey smiles sadly down at her and brushes a kiss to her temple, breezes ruffling both their curls, and with the feel of the wind against her cheeks, she might remember more than her mother's kiss that night. "Yes, we are. We'll be seeing a lot more of them very soon, sweetheart. Goodbye, Lucy!"

Lucy swallows a sob. "Bye, Momma," she sniffles, clutching Percy, her tiny frame made even smaller as she looked to be swallowed up by the moonlight, almost a dream in the nighttime, barely real, not even there. "Bye, Molly."

Molly locks eyes with her sister, blue-green into sky-blue, and wonders if she'll ever see Lucy again, wonders if they'll ever stay up late at night talking about the stars woven through the sky ever again. "Bye, Lucy. Bye, Dad."

"Goodbye, Molly," Percy mumurs, smoothing down Lucy's flyaway blond curls, staring at his ex-wife as if he's got something to say but can't quite summon the courage necessary, and Molly wishes he would speak up, but he's her father, and he's got his pride, so he doesn't. "Goodbye, Audrey."

Audrey turns away from him, pulling Molly closer to her, and activates the portkey.

Molly wonders what had happened between them as she's transported to Greece in a swirl of light and color, and she wonders if they were ever in love or just faking it for their daughters.

That windy night, she decides she never wants this to happen to her.

-:-

In Greece, living in her grandparents' mansion nestled at the top of a little hill, surrounded by her mother's family and laughter and love, Molly grows a garden.

It's small at first, because she starts with just a couple of seeds she had bought in Britain but never got around to planting. There are sunflowers, bright and yellow, and roses, deeply red. There are daisies and tulips and lilies and bluebells and buttercups, and soon enough, her little garden is blooming and bursting with color and life, and it's not quite so little anymore.

One day, Lucy makes one of her rare visits. It's been five years, and they're twelve years old now, and she looks too different from the Lucy of Molly's memory, with her curls grown out and her eyes a brighter shade of blue and everything about her just a little bit older, just a little bit different, just a little bit less Molly's twin.

"Your garden is amazing," Lucy breathes, dancing around with all the energy she'd always had – at least that would never change, Molly reflects, because Lucy is Lucy and she's never going to slow down and meet life head on, no, she's going to have to rush straight past it without ever looking back. "Hey, Molly?"

Molly blinks at her sister, slowing down her watering of the honeysuckle vines, something in her heart sensing that this was an important conversation and as much as she may have wanted to miss it, she couldn't. "Yeah?"

Lucy looks up from the buttercups, her blond ponytail swinging in the breeze and her blue eyes brighter than the skies above. She looks like something out of a fairytale, Molly reflects, ethereal and made of daydreams. "Are you ever going to come back to England?"

Molly looks down at the grass, taking a moment to soak in the Grecian sunshine. "I don't think so," she murmurs, the words heavy in her throat. "I live in Greece, now. And I like it here. Ambrosia Academy is fun. Athens is amazing. And I have all my family and friends."

"Not all of us!" Lucy protests passionately, eyes wide, her fingers curled in the lemon yellow satin of her sundress, and because she's Lucy, she can make her feel everything she's feeling, because they're twins and they're Lucy-and-Molly, no matter how much Molly wishes they weren't sometimes. "Not me or Lily or Dominique or Lysander or Lorcan – "

She shakes her head, red curls bouncing, and wonders how to make Lucy understand that it's been years and Molly's got her own life now and she can't very well hop on a plane to Britain, now, can she? "Those are your friends, Lucy. Not mine."

Despite her cold words, though, she still finds it hard to forget Lily's cheery smiles or Dominique's light laughter or Lysander's funny jokes or Lorcan's warm hugs – and maybe therein lies the crux of her problem, because maybe she was meant for that life. Maybe.

-:-

"Good morning, Molly," greets Percy as she steps through his fireplace, his words cold and stiff and formal, but his eyes much warmer and more loving. For all his faults, Molly knows her father loves her. "Er, how are you doing?"

Brushing green powder off her clothes, Molly lifts her head and smiles at him, more genuine in her greetings than her mother has ever managed when talking to a stoic Percy, who, admittedly, is not the easiest person in the world to deal with, but then, Molly's his daughter. "I'm great, Dad, you?"

Percy hesitates a moment, then walks forward and draws her into a hug. It's not all that warm or even comfortable, but it's the thought that counts. Molly hugs him back.

"I'm doing fine," he says with a small smile, looking at her with blue eyes so similar to hers yet so different. "Is…is your mother here?"

Molly reaches back to tighten her ponytail. "No. She's headmistress at Ambrosia, so she's pretty busy, even in the summer. Where's Lucy and – ?" Her words trail off into confusion as a woman steps into the room, a woman with long brown hair and light green eyes and an approximately six-month-pregnant stomach, a woman she's never seen before in her life.

Percy clears his throat, alarm flashing across his face like a red light for just a moment just long enough for her to spot it and wonder how long he's kept this secret from her. "Um, Molly, this is my wife – er, new wife, Penelope. She's – well, we got married last year and…"

"Yeah." Molly finds it rather hard to swallow. "I get it. Where's Lucy?"

"It's nice to meet you, Molly," says Penelope with a sweet smile, extending her hand in an attempt to ease the awkwardness that grows from Molly's bluntness and the conflict evident in Percy's eyes. "I've heard so many wonderful things about you. You like to garden, right?"

Molly looks at Penelope, then at her father, and then she runs away.

-:-

"Why didn't you tell me he got married?"

She's furious and she's hurt and she's shaking, and she really doesn't mean to take it out on Lucy, but Lucy's there, so innocent and carefree and unhurt, that she can't help but lash out at her twin sister, no matter whether or not Lucy deserves it.

There's a picture of Percy and Penelope and Lucy on her sister's headboard, with Percy in a black tuxedo and Penelope radiant in a white wedding gown and Lucy looking so happy in a spring-green bridesmaid dress, and Percy's arm is around both his wife and his daughter, a grin on his face, and Penelope's smiling and waving prettily, and it makes Molly want to throw up.

"Molly, please, calm down," Lucy says quietly, hopping off the bed where Lily and Dominique and Lorcan and Lysander are gathered to approach her sister. All four of them look on in concern as Lucy takes her hands, only to have Molly shake her off.

"Why?" she demands, dashing furiously at the tears welling in her eyes. "Why should I? This happened a year ago, and I had no idea. She's pregnant! With my baby sibling! And nobody breathed a word to me! How many times did you visit me in the last year, Lucy? Why didn't you tell me?"

"Dad thought it was for the best," says Lucy desperately. "I wanted to tell you, I did, Molls; I even wanted to invite you! But Dad didn't want Mum hearing about it and – "

"Mum has a boyfriend," Molly snaps at her, turning away so she can wipe away her tears without having to look at the faces of her old friends and sister, without having to face their pity and concern, because damn it, she's Molly, and she doesn't need that. "They've been steady for two years. Why would she care?"

Lucy rocks back on her heels. "She does?" she asks, surprise coloring her voice. "Seriously? Why didn't you tell me that?"

Molly rolls her eyes.

"Oh." Lucy has the grace to look sheepish. "I'm sorry, Molly. You have to understand, I wanted to tell you. But Dad said not to, and I didn't know what to do."

"Do you always listen to what Dad says?" Molly asks, inflecting her voice with as much dry sarcasm as she can. "You always were Daddy's little girl."

Lucy sighs, nervously running her hands through her blond curls. "Don't be like that, Molly," she pleads, her voice full of childhood memories and long-ago happiness, and Molly really doesn't want to deal with this right now. "Don't do this. I love you. Dad loves you. Penelope's the nicest person in the world – "

"But she's not our mother!"

-:-

To her surprise, it's not Lucy who chases after her, or even Percy or Penelope. It's Lorcan, whom she hasn't really talked to in years, who's suddenly thirteen and not seven, whose silver-blue eyes seem even brighter and more heartmelting than usual as he takes her wrist and gently swivels her around to face him.

"Molly," Lorcan says, studying her with his big blue eyes, a small frown on his face. "Don't be like this." In the dewy golden dusklight, his words seem to carry more weight, lingering and twining with the winds that whistle through, resting heavy on her heart like a chain twisting her loyalties into a confusing spiral of hurt and confusion and sadness.

It takes her a moment to comprehend the feeling of his arms around her and the warmth of his body, and another moment to work up the nerve to shove him off. "Don't tell me what to do," she mutters, whirling away from him and his stupid, sweet blue gaze.

"I know you're upset," he calls, stopping her in her tracks when she tries to run away again – she does that a lot, she's noticed, but she can't seem to make herself stop. "But you don't have to hurt Lucy, you know. She loves you."

"You don't have to lecture me about this," Molly retorts, kneeling to pick a rose out of a nearby bush, the pink petals soft and comfortingly familiar under her fingers, and a welcome distraction from the look on his face that's half-pleading and half-friendly and almost, almost resolve-breaking. "We're not friends. I know you're on her side. You'll always be her friend first."

"Because she doesn't live half-way across the world!" he cries, exasperated, flinging his words at her like he'd once flung chocolates during a food fight when they were younger – and why, exactly, is she thinking about that now? "Molly, seriously, we're friends, too. We always have been. You know that."

She stands, dropping the rose and crossing her arms, fire flashing in her ocean eyes, because she doesn't want this, doesn't want any of it; she wants to go back to Greece, go home and forget all this had every happened even though it's carved into her memory like she and Lucy carved their names into a maple tree when they were six. "Prove it."

Lorcan stands very still and thinks for a moment. "Fine. Your favorite color is green. You love to garden. You're great at Potions. You have a pygmy owl named Pompona after the orchid. Your favorite flower is honeysuckle. You love chocolate crepes."

"Anybody who knew me for seven years could rattle off that list," she interrupts, breezes whipping her blood-red curls into her face, but she doesn't notice, too intensely focused on the boy in front of her, who's almost grinning but then almost not, and she shouldn't really care about that, should she?

He inhales, exhales, moves forward. "You don't act like it most of the time, but you're passionate. You love what you do, and you'll fight till death for what you believe in. You love too much, though you try not to. You believe in redemption and you hate change. You also hate loud noises, which is why you never spend time with all of us when you visit, because we're so noisy."

Resting his hands on her shoulders, he looks her dead in the eye, making her tremble under the intensity of his gaze. "You're Molly. And I know you."

Maybe he does.

-:-

Dear Molly,

You didn't have to leave.

Everyone was looking forward to talking to you.

Sincerely,

Lorcan.

-:-

Dear Lorcan,

Yes, I did.

I don't know who "everyone" is, anymore. Lily's got a boyfriend, Dominique's pining after some prick with blond hair, Lysander is flirting with everything in a skirt, Lucy's lost in Narnia, and Dad is married.

How can I talk to you when I don't even know you anymore?

Regards,

Molly

-:-

Dear Molly,

You're being ridiculous, you know that?

We're all the same people you left behind. It hasn't even been that long. And you know me, don't you? I haven't changed much. Neither has anybody else, really. Stop being silly, Molls. We miss you. Why don't you visit more often? You didn't even say hi to your grandparents this time.

Sincerely,

Lorcan

-:-

Dear Lorcan,

You're being incorrigible, you know that?

I moved when we were seven. Now we're thirteen. It's been a long time, Lorcan. And I just don't belong in England anymore. I'm sorry. But you all have your new inside jokes and nicknames and Hogwarts adventures, and I have my Greek cousins and friends, and that's the way it is.

Oh, I know you? When I left, you were a skinny little boy who daily pricked his finger on a rose thorn because he didn't know any better. Now you're apparently one of the most popular blokes in school, the one who makes everybody laugh, the one who, if Lily's telling the truth, has girls chasing after him left and right and is a regular casanova around there.

I don't know that person. Sorry.

Regards,

Molly

-:-

Dear Molly,

First of all, I do not have girls chasing after me left and right and I'm certainly not any kind of casanova, and Lily is a dirty, rotten liar.

Second, I still do prick my finger on a rose thorn every now and then. The difference is, without you around, I have no excuse to go to the garden, so I don't spend as much time among the roses. Not my fault you moved, ya know.

Third of all, you totally know me. And if you don't, well, that's what letters are for, aren't they?

Sincerely,

Lorcan

-:-

Dear Lorcan,

If I visit next weekend, will you stop sending me silly letters?

Molly

-:-

Dear Molly,

I make no promises. But maybe.

(Do I not get your regards now?)

Sincerely,

Lorcan

-:-

"I was in a rush, okay?" Molly mutters defensively as soon as he tumbles through the fireplace into the living room of Percy's house with a grin lighting up his face and her last letter in his hand. "My regards," she adds, only half-mockingly.

Lorcan winks at her. "That's better," he says cheerfully and, without warning, wraps an arm around her and drags her in for the warmest hug she's ever received, despite her letter cold against her bare arm and the chill coming in through the windows, because Lorcan is Lorcan and he generates enough body heat to warm her in the dead of the British winter (not that she would tell anyone that).

"Hi, Lorc," Lucy greets, and unless Molly is hallucinating, her twin is smiling knowingly at her, and wondering what's up with that almost distracts Molly from Lorcan's hug, except not quite, because even dissecting Lucy's mysterious expression can't take precedence over this boy, though she doesn't quite know why.

"Hey, Luce," Lorcan beams, letting Molly go, though he doesn't step past her to hug Lucy, instead pausing to fold up her letter and slide it carefully back in his pocket. "So, Molls, how long are you visiting for this time, huh?"

"Two days," Molly replies, reaching back to tighten her fire-bright ponytail and almost, almost smiling at him, except she's Molly and boys like Lorcan don't make her smile – much. "Why? Disappointed you'll only have two days to harrass me?"

"Definitely," Lorcan grins cheekily, lifting a hand to tweak a stray red curl of hers. "Hey, Luce, do you mind if we go out to the backyard? I have something to show to Molly."

Lucy smiles brightly, raising an eyebrow at her twin. "Oh, yes, of course!" she chirps cheerfully, and now Molly's really suspicious about what, exactly, Lucy thinks is going on around here.

"Awesome," Lorcan says brightly, grabbing her hand and twining their fingers together. "C'mon, Molls!" And he tugs her down the hallway and out the house and into the garden at a speed that should make him dizzy, but then, he's Lorcan, so it really only makes her dizzy.

(Maybe that's supposed to be some sort of sign? But, no, she's Molly Weasley, and she believes in logic far more than things like romance and superstitions, thank you very much.)

-:-

Once in the garden, she has to take a moment to properly comprehend the sight before her – what had once been her tiny, five-flower garden made when she was seven had bloomed and blossomed and become something much bigger and beautiful than even her garden back in Greece. There are petals unfurled in pastel pinks and honey golds and aqua blues, there are leaves greener than emeralds, there are fruits brighter and riper than she'd ever seen, let alone tasted, and it's breathtaking.

"How did you – ?" Molly takes a deep breath, trying to formulate a coherent response as Lorcan grins at her in anticipation. "How did you do this?" she manages finally, just a little out of breath from the sheer beauty of the garden.

"Magic, love, and a lot of elbow grease," Lorcan answers cheerfully, wrapping an arm around her, and it's warm and solid and ohsocomforting she can hardly believe it. "And happy early birthday, Molly. From all of us."

The sincere sweetness in his voice surprises her, and when Molly turns away from the beautiful flowers to look at him, he's smiling at her like she means something to him, like he cares about her, like she's more than just Molly-the-gardener and more like Molly, just Molly, his friend, and she almost starts crying.

"Are you okay?" he asks in surprise, bringing her closer in front of him so he look at her standing there with her blue-green eyes shining with almost-shed tears, and then he draws her in for a hug. "Don't cry," he murmurs. "Are you crying because you're happy?"

Molly buries her head in his shoulder and wonders if some day she'll look back on this moment with a smile or with regret. "Yes," she replies, her voice muffled by his jacket but still ringing clear in the otherwise silent garden. "Thank you."

Really, that's all she needs to say with him, because he's Lorcan and he can understand her without ever really needing to ask why.

-:-

"His name is Caleb."

It's a simple enough sentence, but it strikes her heart as she gazes upon the little blue bundle carefully placed into her arms by a smiling Penelope, observing the tuft of dark red hair like her own and the closed eyes that she's positive are blue and the smile that stretches across his chubby cheeks even while he sleeps.

"He's beautiful," Molly whispers, painfully aware of a million pairs of eyes – her father and her sister and Penelope and Lily and Dominique and Lorcan and Lysander – on her back when the only person she'd like to look at her is her new baby brother.

"He's a lot like you were, when you were a baby," Percy tells her, his voice softer than usual and his hand light on her shoulder, and though she doesn't really need the support, she appreciates it anyway, because at least he's trying. "Very quiet, sleeps a lot, hardly any trouble at all."

"As opposed to me," Lucy giggles, and Molly almost – almost – smiles as she looks over at her twin sister.

Caleb wakes, then, and starts crying, interrupting the moment, but Molly doesn't really care, because he's still warm in her arms and he's her baby brother, and she hadn't thought it possible to fall in love this fast, except maybe he can teach her how to love, just a little.

Lorcan catches her eye across the room and grins, and maybe she knows how to love more than just a little now.

-:-

Dear Molly,

Now, wasn't that a fun visit?

Love,

Lorcan

-:-

Dear Lorcan,

I thought I wouldn't be receiving any more of these letters?

Regards,

Molly

-:-

Dear Molly,

I didn't promise that, now, did I?

Do you really think my letters are silly?

Love,

Lorcan

-:-

Dear Lorcan,

Well, no. But it'd be nice if you actually made some conversation.

Regards,

Molly

-:-

Dear Molly,

Ah, so you do like talking with me!

Conversation:

How are you doing over there in Zeus-land? Is it as warm as I hear? How's your mother? Any babies on the way for her? Wait, is she married yet?

Love,

Lorcan

-:-

Dear Lorcan,

Don't flatter yourself.

I'm well, thank you, it's called Greece, not "Zeus-land", yes, it's very warm here, at least right now, my mother is doing fine, I sure hope not, and she's engaged, thanks for asking.

How are you?

Regards,

Molly

-:-

Dear Molly,

You didn't deny it, did you?

I'm doing wonderful, thanks for asking. Gryffindor's winning the House Cup so far, and only Hufflepuff stands a chance of beating us, though not if Louis keeps pulling the kind of pranks he's been pulling.

Tell your mother congratulations. I'm assuming you don't want this news to get to Lucy…?

(I know it's called Greece. I just think Zeus-land sounds cooler.)

Love,

Lorcan

-:-

Dear Lorcan,

Shut up. And stop smiling – I know you are.

Doesn't Gryffindor have James, though? How are you guys still winning?

Actually, I've already sent a letter to her. I'm sure she'll get it soon. You're all invited to the wedding as my friends – Lucy, you, your brother, Lily, and Dominique. It's in four months. Be prepared for dancing.

(Well, that's because you're weird.)

Regards,

Molly

-:-

Dear Molly,

Your wish is my command.

Don't jinx it, please. We haven't won the House Cup in years. Let me revel in our soon-to-be victory, please.

Oh, terrific. Lysander'll be delighted – he got his dancing skills from Mum. Will you save me a dance?

(You love it.)

Love,

Lorcan

-:-

Dear Lorcan,

I'm pretty sure your school year's over, yes? Did you win?

Is that a good thing or a bad thing? And ask me in person if you want a dance.

(I'm not going to dignify that with a response.)

Regards,

Molly

-:-

Dear Molly,

No. Stupid Hugo had to go and win some stupid Ministry award for best scholar and got Ravenclaw like two hundred extra points. Ugh. Geniuses these days.

You're not allowed to gloat, by the way.

That…depends on your definition of "dancing". And I will. Mark my words.

(Didn't you just?)

Love,

Lorcan

-:-

"May I have this dance?"

Lorcan looks remarkably handsome in his blue and white tuxedo, and Molly can't help but smile at him as he stands in front of her with a grin on his face and his hand outstretched. All around him is a flurry of activity, ranging from dancers gliding around the dance floor to silk dresses rustling around to people eating the expensive, delicious food to the music playing loudly in the background, but he stands perfectly still in the midst of it all, looking at her with silver-blue eyes that still make her melt.

"You may," she laughs, sliding her hand into his – he's as warm to the touch as she remembers, and it sends a shiver down her spine as he twines their fingers and drags her to her feet with a laugh, spinning her into the middle of the dance floor and settling one arm around her waist.

"Enjoying the wedding?" he asks her conversationally, his smile brightening up his whole face as he looks at her, really looks at her, as if she lights up his world, or some cheesy nonsense like that – Molly's finding it hard to focus when he's smiling at her like that.

"Very much so," she answers, sliding her arms around his neck as they dance, almost in the middle of the floor, but not quite, while Audrey and Seth twirl by them with Audrey sending a smile to her daughter as she dances past. "You?"

"I am now," Lorcan grins, and suddenly he's leaning closer and closer, and her whole world becomes LorcanLorcanLorcan, fading out the background music and the chatter and laughter and noise and focusing solely on him and his bright eyes and sweet smile and smell of pine trees and raspberries, and then he's kissing her, actually kissing her, and it's an explosion of fireworks and butterflies and flowers blooming and all the best feelings in the world.

It occurs to her, while she's kissing him, that maybe everything happens for a reason – the divorce, moving to Greece, leaving him behind, coming back, falling in love. Maybe there was a reason behind the walls that used to guard her heart, the walls only he could break with his disarming smiles and warm hugs.

Maybe it's because he never played by her rules, that he was always the only exception to all her laws of the universe, that she really, truly learned to love him.

-:-

You are the only exception
and I'm on my way to believing


Author's Notes: Don't favorite without reviewing, please and thank you. :)