the haunting type of decision
more than anything i want to see you, girl
take a glorious bite out of the whole world- You Could Be Happy, Snow Patrol
Because she's Molly, and if she didn't have perfect she'd have nothing.
For her perfection is not a goal, it's a state of being. It's the end of result of great hair, brilliant fashion-sense, a pretty face and some artful form of grace that could pass for elegance if you tilted your head to the side and squinted a little.
Because in a family like hers, you've got to have something to make you stand out.
Victoire's got the beauty, pure and simple and incandescent. Dominique's got the volatility, some unique mixture of Weasley and Veela that makes her one-hundred-percent-heartbreaker. And Lily's got the wit and Lucy's got the artistic talent and Roxanne's got the kindness and Rose has got the brains.
So where does that leave Molly?
Twelve percent Weasley and eighty-eight percent invisible, no particular personality trait to mark her out. She could be the rebellious one, she supposes, but in all honesty Lily's pretty much got that one covered; or perhaps the slut – except, if she's honest, Victoire's on that already.
So she picks perfection, and surprisingly it's easier than she'd have thought.
It starts with the hair. She's sitting in front of her mirror one morning in third year and she's staring at the mass of flyaway red curls that show promise of being a little more controllable in the future, but for now are just some Merlin-awful mess of copper and fire and bird's-nest.
She pulls out her wand, regards it carefully for a moment, and then casts a spell Victoire taught her one time and watches, entranced, as each hair straightens when she runs the tip of her wand over it.
From that day forward, Molly wears her hair straight.
Over the years her skirts get a little shorter and her make-up gets a little more careful and her fashion sense turns into something out of Gossip Girl until she's unrecognisable, just this perfect little Queen Bee who's everything her father ever wanted and everything she never expected.
She looks in that mirror, the one where she first started turning into this girl she doesn't recognise, and she wonders where it all went wrong.
Undoubtedly, the boy is one of these things that goes wrong. He's a lot of different things to a lot of different people, but to Molly he's just a one-way ticket to never-ending popularity and so she sets her sights on him.
And Scorpius, perhaps innocently (or perhaps not innocently at all) falls for it and during sixth year they become MollyandScorpius and if you say it right it sounds good, but if you say it wrong – like a lot of people do – then it sounds twisted and wrong and something that should never really have happened.
They soldier onwards, ignoring the annoyance of various Weasley/Potter family members, and every day their popularity burns a little brighter and they fade out just a little more.
Because these two are not suited, not at all, and it's just some awful mess of lies and using and they need to get out while they can.
In the end, Molly likes the way it happens. It's perfect because she retains her popularity while gaining a vulnerable edge, and Scorpius keeps his bad-boy reputation.
She catches him with Rose in the Room of Requirement, and she's not really sorry at all but she throws things and bursts into tears and pretends to be, because she's Molly and this is the way her life works.
She storms back up to Gryffindor Tower and she thinks that maybe her vanity is wounded more than her heart, because she was never supposed to be the one being cheated on, not ever.
But Lily – little Lily Luna, the Slytherin with a tongue sharper than the sword of Gryffindor – she sneaks her way up into Molly's dormitory and she holds her older cousin while she cries, and then she takes Molly's hands and makes an Unbreakable Vow with her to get revenge on everyone who's ever hurt her.
So Molly gets revenge on Scorpius by stealing all his underwear and stringing it across the Great Hall, and revenge on Rose by stringing her underwear next to it.
And then that just leaves her father – her inept, darling father who's always pushed her too hard too fast and never let her just be Molly.
During the summer, she and Lily sneak out and they go to a Muggle tattoo parlour that Lily (naturally) knows the owner of, and she gets a tattoo on her left shoulder in blueblue ink.
She shows it off proudly when she gets home, and while some of the adults are furious a few – the clever few with a sense of irony almost as highly developed as Lily and Molly's – stifle smiles and try to calm the others down.
When she gets back to school, Molly tugs her shirt off and turns her back to that mirror, craning over her shoulder as her hair tumbles down her back, the red curls bright against her pale skin, and studies the words with a truly genuine smile stretching out her cheeks.
clearly i have made some bad decisions.