disclaimer: I have no rights.
a/n: This is my first time writing this pairing. My friend gave me the idea for it and then, of course, the inspiration went BOOM! :)
Molly stood at the foot of the stairs, watching her family. Bill and Charlie, both visiting, were playing chess. Percy was reading on the couch. The twins were huddled over a parchment, whispering. Ron and Ginny were nowhere to be seen, and Arthur was dozing in an armchair. Molly smiled, content because she knew they were. This was the life she had created for herself. And despite the hardships, the poverty, and the pain, it was the one she wanted. It hadn't always been her first choice, but she was glad now that it was what she had chosen in the end.
"Mum?" Ginny called from somewhere upstairs. "Can you come here really quickly?" To Molly's well-trained ears, she sounded rather nervous.
"Coming, love," Molly replied, and made her way to her daughter's room. She entered the tiny space. Ginny was sitting on the floor with a piece of parchment, quill in hand. She looked close to tears. "What is it? What's wrong?"
The teenage girl sobbed once. "Mum, I have to tell you something."
Immediately Molly began playing worst-case scenarios in her mind. Was she pregnant? Ill? Did she break something? "What's going on, Ginny?" demanded the plump woman.
"I... I've been going out with Draco Malfoy since December," Ginny blurted out. Molly's eyes widened as she did the math - that was seven months. Ginny had never let on. "And we, we promised we'd write over the summer and we wouldn't break up. But he's - he's written me a letter and told me he doesn't want to be with me anymore! What did I do?" The fourteen-year-old burst into wails. "I don't understand why!"
Molly sank down onto the bed, shocked. However, she didn't show that; instead, she began comforting her youngest child. "Oh, Ginny, don't cry, love. It's not your fault. It's his loss, anyway, and his father probably made him do it. You know how Lucius is. Don't cry..."
That night, after the children were in bed and Arthur was still tinkering with Muggle things in the shed, Molly trudged upstairs to her bedroom. She opened the closet door and Accio'd a shoebox from the shelf. She then sat on her side of the bed and opened it, holding her breath.
A stack of parchment was on top of the pile. The handwriting was thin and precise, written with care, faded with age. The top one began Dear Molly. Molly lifted the stack and ran her fingers over the old parchment. She allowed herself only a moment to take glimpses of a few phrases. Been so long since I've seen you... My father still won't speak to me... I miss you terribly, darling. It was signed Love, Lucius. When Molly's brown eyes came to those words, she sighed long and loud, and set aside the letter.
Beneath those lay yellowed photographs. A younger Molly laughed at the camera, her arms around a tall blonde man with intense grey eyes. She stroked the picture for a moment. Her film self was beautiful as she reached up to kiss the man's cheek. In another, the two were with a group of teenagers in Hogsmeade; in a third, they were playing chess. Funny, how someone had always been there to capture the beautiful moments when no one had ever witnessed the ugly ones. He had been possessive; she had been jealous. And they'd both been far too proud.
Molly placed the photographs next to the letters, and examined the rest of the box's contents. It held a green ribbon she'd worn when she met his parents, and again when she'd visited him two years after they'd broken up; a scrap of one of his robes she'd blasted off during an argument; a formal letter from his mother, accepting her into the family; and a ring. An engagement ring.
"Oh, Lucius," murmured Molly. "Sometimes I still think we could have lasted, if you'd only been stronger." But she knew she wouldn't have been happy with him forever. He was a teenage love - obsession and fascination had brought them together; pride and blood had torn them apart after two years - one of dating; one of engagement. And then he had turned to Narcissa Black, and she had found Arthur Weasley. And now, she wouldn't trade her husband for her first love, not for a million Galleons. But she still wondered, sometimes, if Lucius ever thought about her.
"Molly?" came Arthur's voice as he came in. "Are you ready for bed, love?"
"Yes, dear," she said, quickly piling the items back into the shoebox. She floated it up into the closet and went to her husband. "I love you, Arthur," she said, smiling and giving him a hug.
"I love you too, Mollywobbles," he replied, puzzled, but pleased.
"More than anything," Molly added. Even if she did wonder.