Character: Lucy Weasley
Notes: This fic is currently being subtly reworked, so please check back for updates on its edits. This chapter is: NOT YET REVISED.
Lucy Weasley is... electric.
She is in a constant state of not-good-enough and youngest-Weasley and she always wonders if this is what Auntie Ginny felt like. She always tries to aim to do better. Her mind is like a cobweb tangled in the corner of a room full of dust and dulled gems that used to shine so much brighter.
Her room has been jade for as long as she can remember. Father dear has always tried to convince her to change it (change her) and she never gave in.
Maybe she should have.
Lucy feels too much; this is what Molly tells her, over and over. Her mother tells her she doesn't feel enough. Everything is too much and not enough and she is in a constant state of contradictions. Lucy Weasley is super charged and running on empty and hoping she doesn't slow down.
Molly likes to hug her every New Year's morning and likes to kiss her cheek and try to convince her that this year will be better.
She is seven when Molly only nods. She falls down the stairs that morning and breaks her leg and doesn't even cry when her mother tries to tell her it is okay.
They are all relieved the day Lucy receives her Hogwarts letter; she holds it to her chest and smiles at her father and pretends that she will fit in there, in redblueyellowjade. More than she ever did at school; more than she ever did at home.
Electricity and fire run through her veins like blood.
(Molly tells her that diamonds are simply made of carbon; she tells her she is so much more than Weasley.)
But she sits on the Hogwarts Express and they all give her judging looks, wondering which cousin this one will end up like - will she be a Gryffindor and self-obsessed like Rose or broken like James or obsessive like Victoire?
Will she be a Ravenclaw and caged like her sister or insane like Louis?
Or maybe she's just another Hufflepuff who is explosive like Roxanne and hidden like Hugo.
(They whisper jade over and over and they talk about those Potter children who are so loud and so angry and Lucy hopes she won't end up like them. Because Lily and Albus will never be as happy as they think they are because the world simply won't let them be.)
The hat still calls out, "SLYTHERIN!"
It is the first time Lucy hates the world but it won't be the last.
Coming home for Christmas is uneventful; Daddy doesn't talk much (Molly was never in Slytherin) and Mummy tries to smile but-
So Lucy stays in her jade room, for the most part, and tries to keep the words from scrambling in her head. She stutters when she talks, but in her head, the words flow like poetry and choke out stanzas and she just can't fucking stop them-
There is too much going on in her mind that she can't focus on anything else.
By summer, she decides to write out her thoughts - childish handwriting filling notebooks over and over, and here's the best bit; she doesn't even understand why.
Second year rolls around and Lucy is... struggling. All of her teachers pull her aside and ask, over and over, are you okay? She wants to scream "NO!" at the top of her voice, but she can't. Because she is fine. She is not her cousins.
She is fine. Honest.
People always associate her with her family and everything they're not saying, but truth be told, Lucy doesn't care about Uncle Harry and Auntie Ginny's divorce. She doesn't care about what Rosie's doing and she certainly doesn't care that Molly is happy.
Lucy Weasley is not her family and she certainly doesn't need her family to cure her.
She spends the summer practising spells she shouldn't be using and finds that her favourite is Incendio. She wonders what it means.
Suddenly, it's her third year - and everyone talks about Hogsmeade and dates and boys. Lucy can't force herself to feel interested, to feel normal, because she's barely averaging an A in most of her classes and she needs to study.
That's why she doesn't have time for boys and dates and Hogsmeade. Isn't it?
The other jaded girls think she's a little odd, but they don't say much - she's a Weasley, after all, and Weasleys look after their own.
Besides, Lucy's best class is DADA and she knows how to defend herself. She's known for her duels, the best of the best - little Lucy Weasley, the girl who took down a fifth year Gryffindor who tried to tell her she wasn't good enough.
She sees duels as poetry, can write out the spells like song lyrics in her head. It's a story, with a plot and character and hexes that shine like jade and fire.
(Lucy has to refrain herself from setting her opponent on fire. Don't they look so pretty when they're burning?)
But when she get home for the summer, her father doesn't care how good she is at fighting bullies. All he does is fret over Transfiguration and asks how on this earth is she supposed to get into the Ministry with grades like these?
Mother stays silent and Lucy pretends she can't see her half-packed suitcase in the wardrobe.
Fourth year - Lucy gets in a fight with Fred, because who is he to criticize her grades when he's barely going to pass his NEWTs? She tries to pity him, she really does, but she doesn't see what's so wrong about being Fred Weasley. Any Fred Weasley.
(It's a fuck lot better than being Lucy.)
One of the sixth years offers her a cigarette during one of the celebratory parties (they have one of the best Quidditch teams, and they know it. Mother wasn't impressed.) She doesn't say no.
Lucy stares transfixed at the jade glowing end and she doesn't even cough when she raises it to her lips. Suddenly, the world seems so much clearer - the jumbled words ease and slow and her mind is quieter than it's ever been.
Who would've thought?
She manages to convince a seventh year or two to sell her a few packets, just to get her started - she wasn't going to use the money in Hogsmeade, anyway. And this is an investment.
She smiles to herself.
By the summer, Lucy is smoking two packs a day - she's sure it will go up to three by September. Her family drive her crazy - words swirl in her head, over and over - words like try harder and be better and words that pierce like knives. She is trying.
One day, she stops the cigarettes. She throws her remaining packets out of the window.
But the words - they overflow until they are dripping into her eyes, blurring her vision and painting them across her eyelids.
Lucy writesandwritesandwrites but it's not enough.
The words spill onto her walls in inky jade and the colour runs, itching towards the floor and towards Lucy where they can reach her and crawl back inside her poor little broken mind. In the end, she breaks; she crawls out of the window and rummages in her mother's prize flowerbeds until she finds all of her cigarettes, the boxes torn and dirty and perfect.
(Of course, her family aren't here to see the ink on her hands and the mud on the knees, and so aren't there to ask questions.)
Lucy takes a drag, and the words stop.
When she returns for her fifth year, she is up to three packs a day and she's never worked harder. The words seem to flow, and then she's not failing Transfiguration and she's not even failing Potions.
But she's fifteen.
Fifteen means first dates and first kisses and gossiping in the dorms, but - but Lucy's never been kissed. All it seems to be is the trading of saliva and tasting what the other person had for breakfast and knowing for certain whether or not they've brushed their teeth since then.
There doesn't seem to be anything remotely appealing about lips and hands and bodies.
Molly tells her she'll grow out of it. She fears she never will.
The other girls tell her, behind jade curtains and with jaded eyes, that she's playing with fire. She doesn't know what she's doing and she's going to get hurt and they're just trying to help, Lucy, honest. Maybe Lucy doesn't mind.
Sixth year is a blur of fire and out-of-control and kisses with dark boys in dark cupboards.
Lucy tells herself that she has to be normal - she is not going to turn out like her cousins, she's not. (Apart from her cousins are happy.)
But those kisses don't mean anything. She doesn't feel electric when hands are too hot against her hips and too-wet lips are ghosting over hers. And she wonders what's wrong with her. So she starts writing again. Oh, she still chain-smokes until her fingers are yellow and her lungs are collapsing like Rome, but -
Writing helps. It's always helped.
So Lucy scrawls whatever she can into notebooks and she even writes a proper story or two; fantasy novels with new and exciting creatures you can't find in textbooks. In some ways, it keeps her sane.
(But her soul just itches to be set on fire.)
Her family is all so fucking happy and paired off - even Lily, who Lucy always relied on to be more insane than her - has Scorpius and her Quidditch and Lucy has nicotine and notebooks. This is no life; this is hanging on. This is writing and smoking and coughing blood into tissues-
This is what the world looks like when it's dying.
She gets back home for the summer and mummy dearest has moved on to greener pastures. The cigarettes burn jade. Father finds her passed out in a puddle of blood, and this time, doesn't hesitate to Apparate to St. Mungo's. He can't afford to lose Lucy as well.
All her cousins stand at the foot of her bed when they tell her the news. Cancer, they whisper. It's like a curse.
She cries and she smiles and she realises that this is the first time they have all been in the same room in years. Even during Christmas dinners, one or two or five of them are missing. Sometimes it's just Lucy.
But now they've written her notes and cards and banners and flowers litter the hospital room until it looks like a meadow. And Lucy can't stop laughing.
Roxanne tells her she knows what it's like to hold a cigarette like it's your best friend and Al whispers his stories of escaping to the Astronomy Tower to forget. And just like that, they're family again and they're bonding over the fact they're more fucked up than any other family in history.
Lucy doesn't go back to school.
They put her through chemo (because if wizards could cure cancer, the world would be a very different place) and her family hold her hand throughout it all. Even Mother. Even Molly.
She should feel suffocated. In fact, it's as though she's finally learnt to breathe.
James tells Lucy she has talent after he steals one of her stories, and she blushes as scarlet as his Gryffindor scarf. She writes more and more until Uncle George says he knows a guy who knows a guy who can get her a publisher - and this guy snaps her up in a flash. In her own terms, of course.
She may be lying around in a hospital with no hair and a forgotten jade tie and no boyfriend, but she is not useless. She's a Slytherin, after all.
And it's not long before they announce that Lucy is clear - she's free, and she can breathe.
Molly comes to her on her last night and wraps her into a hug so tight she feels as if her lungs are collapsing again - Molly tells her that it's alright not to like anyone. She says it's okay to be alone, because she's not alone. And never will be.
She is Lucy Weasley, and she is electric.