Disclaimer: I own nothing Harry Potter related, It all belongs to the lovely and brilliant Joanne Rowling.
A/N: Hello, this idea actually came to me whilst I was thinking of Head Canons for a Facebook page I administrate. If any of you want to check it out, just search "Just Because You've Got the Emotional Range of a Teaspoon". If you guys want to take a look at some of my other ideas and, who knows, maybe they'll make a story on here sooner or later… Anyway! I'll stop rambling. On to the story.
P.S: To anyone reading "Things I'm Not Allowed to Do at Hogwarts" and "Messers. Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot and Prongs", I have your chapters in editing, they will be on soon; life has just been terribly hectic. Sorry, I'll let you kill me later.
The Burrow was unusually silent; it had been for many days now. Suddenly, for the first time in days, there was a loud pop as a man with messy black hair appeared out of nowhere, stumbling a bit as he landed awkwardly on the slope of the hill just outside the tower of a house. Right as he regained his composure, another pop sounded and out of the air came a red haired man, stumbling just as the other had. Following him cam another pop, followed by two more, there seemed to be a crowd of red haired people forming on the hill side. As the last pop sounded, revealing a red haired girl and a lady with bushy brown hair, the entire crowd just stood, the silence settling around them.
The group didn't move nor did they talk; they just stood on the hill side, as if waiting for something to move them to the house in front of them.
It was the black haired man, his face weary and damaged, who had taken the first step toward the house. Cuts littered his body, as if he had just suffered through a battle, and he had. It had been five days since the Battle of Hogwarts had ended, and Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, and the Weasley family had just returned to Burrow after doing all they could to help rebuild the prestigious school which had nearly been destroyed. Harry looked toward his friends, their faces staring blankly at his. He went over to the youngest of the group, Ginny Weasley, and took her hand, leading her toward her home. On the way, Ginny grabbed Hermione's hand, who in turn grabbed Ron's hand, and one by one, the Weasley's moved down the hill side, their hands clasped together as if they would become lost if they let go.
Once everyone was in the house, everything remained silent. There was no happy conversation, no laughter at jokes, surprisingly, there were no jokes being passed around at all; for everyone was mourning, for one of their own was missing.
The George suddenly broke away from the group, dropping Charlie's hand as if it burned. He ran up the stairs to his right, his footsteps echoed in the eerily silent house until they stopped; ending with a bang as the door was thrown against its frame.
"Georgie." Mrs. Weasley whispered, moving to follow him, because the only way she knew how to comfort one of her children was to talk. However, all the other troubles her family had faced, all the other pain they had felt, seemed trivial compared to this. This pain felt horrible, as if someone was stabbing her in the abdomen with a knife over and over again, yet, all the same it numbed her, made her feel hollow, like a shell.
A hand on her shoulder stopped her in mid-step, she turned her head around, tears escaping her eyes for what felt like the billionth time in the last couple of days; and perhaps it had. Her watery brown eyes met calm green, but they were hurting too. These eyes, which had seen far too much for someone of his age, hurt just as much as hers did, but, unlike hers, had been practiced in the art of self-control, for all their life they had been trained to be strong, and breaking down the armor this one boy had built would be hard.
"Don't," Harry simply said, "he needs to be alone." For Harry Potter knew what George Weasley was going through, maybe not at the force, nor to the extent his hurt traveled, but he knew the feeling all the same. He knew what George needed was to grieve in his own way. The faces of Remus and Tonks swam into his vision, fading the once comforting interior of the house he had spent so many summers in. The image of their lifeless bodies broke his heart. The image of his godson, Teddy Lupin, his little tuft of hair already changing colors, just like his mother's rose in front of his eyes. The happiness in Remus' voice, the light in his eyes, which was probably brighter than he had ever seen it, when he was announcing his son's birth played like a broken film reel, over and over again. Images of Sirius fading into the veil; Snape's black tunnel-like eyes which had finally reached their end; Fred's cold, lifeless body, covered up by Percy; the unnatural stillness of Fred's body as he watched the Weasley's cry over their lost family member; his mother and father's dead bodies, their last words ringing in his head; Dumbledore falling off the Astronomy Tower into the darkness below all shot through his mind; adding another wound to his already scarred outside. The limp, lifeless body of Colin Creevy, whom Harry had never paid any attention to, stabbed his heart. Harry blinked a few times, willing the unwanted memories to go away. No. He couldn't get lost in his own miseries. He had to be here, for Fred, for the Weasleys. He couldn't distance himself like he had after Sirius' death, he needed to be here. Now.
His vision focused back onto the pained face of Mrs. Weasley, the woman who had always been there for him in his times of need, he needed to repay her, he needed the repay all of them, it's the least he could do. He pulled out a chair, the wood scraping on the floor sounded like a gunshot throughout the silent house. Mrs. Weasley collapsed on the chair before letting all of the tears fall, puddles staining the wood of the table beneath her arms.
"Damn it!" someone shouted, followed by a crash.
Harry looked over to the other end of the table at Percy, who had kicked over lone stool beside him. He saw the pain etched in the third oldest Weasley's face, the remorse and guilt evident on his pale face. For Percy wished it had been his instead. Him who had abandoned the family in the darkest, hardest times; him who had said those awful things to his father; him who had sent back the Christmas Sweater he had received from his mother, ignoring the obvious fact that it would pain her. It should have been him who had died. Even now, when Kingsley Shacklebolt had explained that there was nothing that could've prevented it. Even now, after he had all the time to let his anger out, did he want nothing more than to trade places with Fred. To be the one who had died. Fred's body, the last words he had said rang through his head like an accusation. It tortured him. It had been ever since Fred's spirit had left this world. It was as if this pain was one last prank Fred had to pull, but he knew it wasn't. His brother was too good to do this. Fred had never wanted to inflict pain on anyone, not pain like this. However, Percy knew he deserved it. He deserved the guilt and pain he was feeling. He deserved every last bit of it.
Hermione looked on as Bill broke away from Fleur and knelt beside his brother, who was silently crying next to the discarded stool beside him. She squeezed Ron's hand, which was inside hers, hoping to let him know that everything would be fine, that they would all make it through this. She looked over at his face, trying to catch his eye, but they were lost. His blue eyes were clouded over, looking at something she couldn't. However, she knew what he thinking of. It was the same thing they all hadn't stopped thinking of.
She zoned out too, thinking of the infamous prankster. How his face would light up when he had an idea for a prank. She silently cursed herself for how hard she had been on the twins when they were at Hogwarts. She was suddenly reliving that moment. The sound of explosions echoed inside her head, making her tighten her hold on Ron's hand. Lights from spells hitting the School flashed in front of her eyes, and suddenly, Percy and Fred were there, battling Death Eaters with them. Percy said something whilst his Death Eater clawed at himself in pain. Fred laughed.
"You're joking Perce! You actually are joking... I don't think I've heard you joke since you were –"
Suddenly there was a bang which made Hermione jump. For a minute, all she saw was the castle, she thought that she had remember the explosion in the castle, the one that happened as Fred had died; but no. The minute she realized that this sound was real was when Mrs. Weasley let out a short wail of pain, laying her head against her arms, hers shoulders shaking from sobs. Another bang from above their heads sounded throughout the house followed by another and another. Hermione looked at Ron, the clouds had vanished and the worry she felt lined his face. She gave him a strained smile, squeezed his hand again, and broke away from him. She traveled numbly to the stove, turned it on, filled a kettle up and set it on its top all with a few flicks of her wand; Mere minutes later she had a cup with hot tea in her hand. She tapped Mrs. Weasley on the shoulder.
"Ron always told me how, when someone was upset, you would give them some tea." She responded to Mrs. Weasley's look of confusion when Hermione set down the cup. Mrs. Weasley stared for a moment, as if she hadn't quite processed what the Muggleborn had said before a ghost of a smile appeared on her age-worn face. Hermione sat down next to Mrs. Weasley, and across from Mr. Weasley, who had been sitting next his wife all this time, rubbing her shoulder as he stared blankly at the wooden table. She looked at Ron, who had turned around and was now examining the pictures across the wall behind where he had stood.
Ron looked at the pictures in front of him, hot tears welling up in the back of his eyes. Fred was everywhere; there was not one picture on this wall he could not associate with a fond memory of his older brother. Fred's voice echoed throughout his mind as he looked at each photo, trying to desperately hold back the tears. There were photos of Fred in almost every frame on this wall. Fred and George holding beaters bats hovering on their broomsticks, their arms slung over each other, their young faces laughing. The entire Weasley family during Christmas Dinner. Bill's graduation, the twins held up on his shoulders, Percy standing beside his eldest brother, Charlie knelt down beside him. Fred and George on the top of the roof of the Burrow, Mrs. Weasley yelling at them to come down. Fred playing patty-cake with a baby version of Ginny. Fred teaching a younger version of himself how to throw gnomes across the hedge; Bill, Charlie, Percy, and George all trying to catch the same gnome that the younger Ron failed to kick over the garden's hedge. There were too many. Too many memories, too many feeling, too much hurt.
Ron suddenly felt an arm across him shoulder. He turned his head to see Charlie next to him, looking at all the pictures in front of them, tears falling freely down his face.
"I miss him too Ronnie, we all do. I know this is hard for you. It's hard for all of us, but just think; now Fred is in a better place now. He can play all the pranks he wants without worrying about how Mum will punish him when she finds out."
Charlie's attempt at a joke did virtually nothing to lighten the mood between them. Ron just looked at Charlie who didn't even force a laugh. His face was grim; even he didn't find the joke funny. It was just an empty attempt for humor. Empty. Just like Ron. Charlie must've felt Ron staring at him, granted, Ron didn't even realize he had been staring. He was just zoning out, like he had been for the past five days. Ron looked away hastily, not wanting to look at the pictures, a taunting reminder that his brother wasn't coming back, he stared at the floor.
At his feet was a basket of laundry, long forgotten, the stark white sheets had thin layer of dust on them. His mother's golden clock was in the middle of them. Ron was reminded of how his Mum had always carried this clock with her when times were dark. Were still living in the dark, Ron thought, because nothing will ever seem bright again.
Ron's blood ran cold as he looked closer at the clock. He tugged on the sleeve of Charlie's shirt, something he hadn't done since he was a little boy.
"Charlie," Ron whispered, realizing that this was the first word he had said in days, "Charlie... lo-look at the clock." He heard his brother suck in a gasp of pain, but not pain on his behalf, more like pity.
"Harry," Ron heard Charlie whisper out to the others behind them, "Ginny, Hermione, Guys. Come here." Ron heard footsteps as everyone followed Charlie's orders. He heard soft "awes" of pity coming out of the mouths of his family and friends because almost every hand on that magical clock pointed to the word "Home". Almost.
Two hands weren't.
The two separate hands with the pictures of Fred and George were together.
They were both pointing to the word "Lost".
A/N: Okay, so that's where I'm going to leave off for now. I'm going to make this story about 3 chapters, so I will be updating (Hopefully within the next week). Do me a favor? Can you please leave me a review telling you what you think? It would mean the world to me as a writer. 'Till next time.