One - Percy Weasley - failed

Percy Weasley looked at the accumulated pile of paperwork on his desk and scowled. He was doing his best, but it seemed that his best was never quite enough. Twice already this week, he'd been hauled into Madam Umbridge's office to be told he wasn't pulling his weight. It stung. Especially when he was working his socks off for the bloody Ministry, and had given up so much for them. But it seemed that if your name was Weasley, even that wasn't quite enough. Nothing he did would ever be quite enough.

Percy had always been a hard worker. Right the way through school, he was the one who always gave his homework in on time, the one who wrote more than was asked or expected, the one who was never satisfied with As, and aimed for Es all the time. To be honest, he was the one who was always a bit disappointed with an E; hoping for an O every time. He had always been ambitious and had always known that it was in the Ministry that he wanted to make his mark.

He had striven and worked and fought to get here. He had burnt the candle at both ends. He had worked late and come in early. He had given up weekends and evenings and time with friends and family. And when it came to making a choice, he had put career and ambition and loyalty to the Ministry above loyalty to his family.

(He believed - no, he knew - that they were wrong. But still, they were his family.)

And now it seemed that his best was not good enough for the Ministry.

Failure. An ugly word.

He had failed.

Percy Weasley sat in the corner in the familiar living room at The Burrow. He did not look up, because if he did he would see his family, his broken family.

He had failed them far more than he had failed the Ministry. He had sacrificed their love and support for his own selfish ambition. He had blinded himself to what was right so that he could gain power and influence with the people he thought were important.

And they were not the important ones at all.

He had failed, and this was the failure that really mattered.

"Perce!" He looked up and saw Ron holding out a steaming mug to him, something approaching a smile on his face, despite his red eyes.

"Tea," Ron said, as one explaining something to an idiot or to someone who has been very ill. "It won't cure anything, but..." He shrugged. "It might help a bit."

Percy managed a faint smile of his own as he took the tea. He did not understand it, but his family still wanted him, had even welcomed him back.

Perhaps this was one failure he could redeem.