Chapter 1: Cleaning the Attic
will be two years since the battle of Hogwarts, and two years since my best
friend and brother, Fred, died. I am now dating his ex-girlfriend, and we are planning
to get married in three months. I can't believe it’s been this long, though it
feels like it’s been a lifetime.
Nor could I believe that I was engaged to Angelina. The thought of it made me feel guilty, like I betrayed my twin. And the worst part was that I knew Angelina only liked me because I'm Fred's identical twin, other than the fact that I'm missing an ear, and I only like her because Fred was in love with her.
But I couldn't let her find out I knew this, nor could I tell her I feel basically the same way. It just felt so wrong and I didn't want to hurt her, I could never do that to her.
The truth was that she loved Fred, and I loved someone else, but I needed Angelina and she needed me.
Gosh, I wish Fred were still here. I'd do anything to get him back.
"George?! You up, dear? Breakfast is ready." I could hear Mum holler up the stairs.
I slowly got out of bed and walked down to breakfast, though I wasn't hungry, I haven't been able to eat mush since the battle. Eating just made me feel sick anymore, I know it worries Mum but sitting at a table without the one person who's been by my side since I was a baby hurt more than anyone could ever imagine. I felt a tear roll down my cheek; I wiped it away and pushed the memories aside, I didn't want to worry Mum, more than she already was.
I walked past Mum's clock (that told her exactly where every one of us Weasley's were at every moment of every day) looked at the hand that will forever stay on lost, the one with Fred's name on it, for a moment; then walked to the kitchen and sat where I always sat.
"Charlie, says he's coming home from Romania today," said Bill as he walk in to the Kitchen, Dad, Ginny, Ron, and Percy following him, and sat down, "He'll probably be here in a few minutes."
"Oh, good!" said Mum happily.
I wanted to glare at her, but I didn't. I was afraid I'd worry her more than she needed to be.
How could she be so happy?! I thought, how could any of them be so happy?!
Dad put his hands on my shoulders. "How you feeling, George?" he asked.
I looked down at my hands, folded on the table, on able to answer.
He sighed sadly, knowing my answer, then sat down at the end of the table where he usually sat.
"You going to the shop today?" Percy asked.
I shook my head. "No, the shop's closed for today, tomorrow and the next," I said quietly.
Ginny changed the subject, most likely knowing my thoughts had drifted back to Fred, "Harry is coming by today."
"Oh! I was wondering when he'd be by. He's long over do for a visit," Mum said.
So is Fred, I couldn't help but think.
"Well, he's been really busy lately."
There was a popping sound behind me and Mum happily said, "Charlie!" Then, "come sit down and eat."
"Hello everyone," he said.
He sat down in the empty seat next to me and I wanted to yell at him, that was Fred's seat, always has been, always will be, but I didn't. Everyone stared at me, knowing my usual reaction to not having one empty seat next to me. Then I realized that wasn't why they were looking at me.
I was crying... again. I wiped the tears away and said, "I'm fine!" It came out harsh, though I didn't mean for it to, and my voice cracked. Great.
"Oh, Georgie," Mum said getting up to come and put her arms around me, "My poor boy."
"I'm fine," I lied again, voice cracking again.
"George, you know you don't have to lie," she said sadly.
I couldn't think of anything to say. I wish they would believe me, but how could they when I had uncontrollable tears rolling down my face, and I really wish Fred was here, but he isn't. The tears came faster, and I leant into Mum's shoulder.
"I'm sorry," I said softly.
"George you don't have to be sorry. We all miss him," she said with a shaky voice.
I closed my eyes. Great! Now I've got Mum upset! What the heck is wrong with me!
Mum pulled away, wiped the tears from my face, and said, "It’s OK Georgie."
But it isn't OK! It's never gonna be OK! I wanted to say, but I already upset her enough so I kept the thought to myself. I opened my eyes to see tears also rolling down Ginny's face.
"You’re not hungry, are you?" Mum asked.
"No," I muttered, looking away from Ginny.
"I'm going to clean out the attic today, you want to help, George?" Dad asked.
"Arthur! Can't you-" Mum began but I didn't let her finish.
"Mum, its fine. Yeah, I'll help. I'll go start now, if you want." I needed to do something, something that wouldn't remind me of Fred, but everything I do reminded me of him.
"Sure, I'll be up later."
"You don't want to at least try to eat something?"
"No, Mum, I'm not hungry."
I got up and walked up the five flights of stairs, opened the hatch in the ceiling outside Ron's room, and climbed up into the attic, where the ghoul was rampaging through one of the boxes.
"Would you knock it off?!”
It jumped and looked at me then ran away from the box and climbed into a box that I knew he slept in. I felt a little bad.
I began to pick up the mess the ghoul made before I started on anything else. I was about done when I found a book that looked to be an ancient spell book. I could hear Dad coming up. I stared at the book, for a minute before throwing it back into the box the ghoul was in.
"You know your mother is worried about you, right?"
"Yeah, Dad, I know," I muttered.
"She's afraid you're going to try killing yourself or something."
I looked up at him, "why would she think that?" It may have crossed my mind once or twice but I never would. Fred wouldn't want me to. Or would he? Does he miss me as much as I miss him? Does he think of me as much as I think of him? Does he wish he said the three words that we never said to each other as much as I do?
"George, Fred's go-"
"DON'T SAY IT! Please."
"Dad don't, please. Every day I have to look at Mum's stupid clock, and see that one hand stuck on lost. Dad, please don't... don't make me have to hear it too." I could feel the tears welding up in my eyes, and I tried to blink them away but my attempt failed.
"I'm sorry," he said putting an arm around my shoulders.
I looked away and saw the book that I threw in the box before Dad came up. I got curious, so I, again, wipe the tears off my face and picked up the book. "What's this?"
"Oh, that's just an old family spell book. We'd been meaning to get rid of it."
I don't know why but something was telling me to keep it so... No I shouldn't. But the curiosity and the feeling to keep it was too strong. "Can I have it?"
"Don't know why you'd want that old thing, but sure. Why not?"
"Thinks, Dad." I sat the book aside, to take it back to mine and Fred's room.
"Why don't you go down stairs? I'll finish up here."
"Yeah. Go on."