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Challenge: Random Quote
Points: 1st/2nd/3rd/Participation Only: 50/40/30/10 points & 20/15/10/5 knuts, respectively. 2pts for voting.
Details: Write a fic using the theme of Perserverance.
Title: After The Factt
When Fred dies George thinks about giving up and ending it all. Everyone looks sympathetic and they don't see him as a person anymore. Fred and George, George and Fred. They are a unit and when one is dead people don't see the twin that is left. That is the hardest part of moving on. People won't let him move on. Everyone talks about Fred and for the first couple of years he understands that but after that he starts to feel that they look at him and see a ghost. George doesn't think for one second that Fred would want him to live in mourning. He did that for a few months but after that he realises he has a life, and he is lucky to have it, and he needs to do something with it.
He starts to change the subject. He knows people think that it is out of pain but it is out of life. Fred is gone. Talking won't bring him back. Making their business a success honours him and George is damn sure that is what he is going to do. He starts to avoid people that talk about Fred. Again, they think the wrong thing but George talks to Harry and learns to deal with it. If anyone is an expert in avoiding a subject it is his brother. Years have passed and still people want to know about the end of the war.
He doesn't talk about Fred and it isn't because he has issues but because he wants to be seen as George. He gravitates towards people who will respect that and that is how Ron comes to work with him. Harry invests more in the store and never says a word about his twin, just urges him to speak to Angelina who keeps talking about him. Dinner always has an extra portion at Harry and Ginny's house on a Friday and George often appears saying he is there for Teddy. Slowly but surely be builds a life as a person and not a twin.
At no point it is easy but post war life isn't easy for anyone and he keeps telling himself that, and he tells anyone who questions him on it too. His mother wants him to see a Mind Healer but George is adamant that he won't. He is adamant that the only way he can adjust to life without Fred is to live it. Sure, sometimes he looks for Fred and he isn't there and sometimes he pauses thinking Fred will finish his sentence but he knows Fred it dead. He knows he will learn to live with it. It is not easy and sometimes he goes home and he cries but looks of pity won't help and they won't keep their dream alive either. He honours Fred by living and putting other joke shops across Europe out of business. He honours Fred by striving every day to live the life that Fred could never have.
Title: Eye of the Beholder
It is a quest, and quests are not without difficulty. Any good Gryffindor knows that.
I was almost sorted into Gryffindor actually. The Hat had very particular opinions about someone with my temperament and impetuosity, my focused passion. You could be very, very good there. You could fit well, with the strengths you could develop.
But I had wanted more than very, very good. I had wanted great. Greater than. The Greatest, in fact.
I wanted to never be at the mercy of fools again.
Perhaps Ravenclaw, then, it had whispered silkily. Plenty of brilliant minds there. Or Hufflepuff, with its core tenet of justice.
At age eleven, I had cocked an ironic eyebrow and hissed in Parseltongue, I will rule them all.
Alright then, it had said.
It's a fine quest, really. But it has required sacrifices of me. As all quests require of their heroes.
Of course, I am not a hero, by nearly anyone's definition - at least, the narrow definition of hero. Which would likely explain why I have minions instead of sidekicks. Often incompetent minions, at that.
One notable exception is Bellatrix, really - my beautifully manipulable, powerful Bella. The set of her eyes speaks of unsullied adoration despite my physical disfigurements. And Nagini, too, who is mine like no other. Snakes value what is powerful and useful.
We always have.
Those with ability were meant to rule those without it. It is the natural law, and my brave new world will cull the useless - Muggle and wizard alike, including most of my current followers - from the ranks of power and influence. There will be justice and efficiency and harmony, and I will be there to guide the world as it should be.
It is for the Greater Good, and it simply takes time.
Interestingly, there was a Muggle who forged Britain into a thundering hammer back when I was younger, against all odds, leading the nation to a victory that resounded through the years. Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm, he had said.
He was right. If Churchill was still alive, I would plan to include him in the governing of the Muggles once my rule was established. So few of our kind bother to look beyond the confines of the wizarding world to see greatness wherever it might shine, to try to harness it. A terrible lapse in the current educational system, really.
Life is imperfect. Churchill is dead.
I am not.
I will make it so I will never be.
I will carry on. And, with the proper enthusiasm, I will succeed.
Title: Of Plants and Dreams
Neville dug his fingers into the soil. Other people might find the art of growing things tedious, but he enjoyed the quiet. He enjoyed waiting for that first bud of life. He enjoyed watching the slow growth of plant life, of life that sprouted up against all odds with only his efforts to aide it. He loved to ensure the soil was perfect before nesting a seed in its warmth and then carefully sprinkling water onto the soil, dampening it to let its nutrients be absorbed by the seed.
Yes, other people might find it tedious, but Neville thought there was something poetic about seeing the perseverance of life. It gave him hope that after all that had gone on, perhaps the world wasn't so doomed after all. Perhaps there wouldn't always be a battle waiting on the horizon, but instead a joyful adventure.
Planting was his way to dream.
Title: Stay Strong, Girl
Ginny fumed from her corner of the common room, face buried in Standard Book of Spells, Grade 4. What had started as exasperation jumped to annoyance and did a hard left into visceral disgust. Her reason was sitting in a gaggle in front of the fireplace.
The Harr-lots were in session.
The name was ghastly, yes, but the crooning and simpering over Harry’s “grassy eyes” and “soulfully bashful hair” was worse by far. Ginny had perfected obsessing over Harry to an art, and these ninnies were making a mockery of her vocation.
Ninnies with magic, however, are the worst ninnies of all.
She supposed she had to give it to them for the sheer lack of subtlety. For weeks Harry had been getting spelled lockets that, when opened, blinded the opener with a brutal cacophony of rainbow light and sparkle. Harry was clever enough to give the first locket to Seamus upon receiving it, who was foolish enough not to balk at the wrapping paper with hearts doing a jig. When vision returned (“Harry you feckin' piece of shite that’s the last time I open anything you give me!”), you could see Harry’s and the sender’s initials joined in curlicue script. The lockets were always engraved, “To the Boy Who Lives…in my heart”. Blegh.
The lockets were the least of it, though. The tokens of admiration escalated in both danger to one’s person and general disgustingness. When the post arrived Seamus would bolt out of the Great Hall, sometimes mid-treacle. One time Harry had to go to the hospital wing because a charm bracelet that appeared to be braided with hair and red ribbon launched itself at Harry’s wrist and got tighter and tighter the more you tried to pull it off. It didn’t help to ignore the dratted things because the parcels just bounced after Harry singing loud off-key 13th century ballads until someone (Ron) couldn’t take it anymore and ripped them open in a frenzy.
So this was reconnaissance. These girls had to be stopped. She objected on principal of course; she was a jealous creature at heart. But Harry was also her friend, and friends don’t let friends be hounded by teenage girl shaped tyrants with entirely too much time on their hands.
Not to mention she wanted to know how they managed the bracelet. It never hurt to have interesting hexes in her repertoire to keep her brothers on their toes.
Unfortunately the reconnaissance was proving a failure. There were no dark plans or hidden curse books, or anything else it might be construed as useful. Just three hours of nattering on and on about Harry’s “dreamily tragic clavicles”. Ginny sunk deeper into the cushions as they tittered off to bed. She stewed, irritated and no more the wiser about what dastardly romantic plot would be visited upon Harry. From the passageway to the bedrooms she heard, “See you ladies next week! Same time!”. Ginny groaned. Only for you, Harry, only for you.
Title: How Hogwarts Was (Re)Built
There were leftover spells, malicious hexes and fatal curses triggered by a careless step, an errant grip. It was ancient magic attempting to right its perceived wrongs, protective charms gone awry in the face of dark magic.
Hogwarts was attacking itself and hurting its own, and at the end of a hard fought war, it was a battle hardly anyone wanted to fight anymore, but it was a battle that needed to be won. The rebuild would start here: brick by brick, spell by counterspell.
So they persevered. The Gryffindors, rallying the forces. The Ravenclaws, countering the curses. The Slytherins, creating the plans. And the Hufflepuffs, carrying it out.
Brick by brick, spell by counterspell.
He snarled at her, cursed her, glared at her with his eyes gleaming, and still she loved him. Still she hovered close, still she danced by his side, still she schemed and tortured and murdered for him. Each time she vowed that this would be the one, this would be the day upon which he would awaken with a lust for her, an adoration for her talent and her devotion. He would touch her then, finally, cold fingers wrapped around an eager throat, slender bodies pressed together and joined as one, in a way that she could never achieve with anyone else, no matter how desperately Rodolphus tried to please her.
Bella craved only one Master, and she would persevere until she won his respect, his desire to have her by his side. He had no heart to win, and that was fine by her, for Bellatrix had no heart, either, or so she told herself.
They had nothing but the thirst for power, and someday they would also share the thirst for one another, as they danced together upon the ashes of their enemies.
She was there everyday. Every single day, rain, shine, whatever mother nature threw her way she would be there. It was the least she could do honestly and there was nothing that could be said or done to change her mind. After the first few months Arthur had tried to talk her out of going but after a few 'fights' and some cold shouldering he stopped asking. She could see the way her other kids looked at her when she said she would be back. She went at the same time every day as close as she could, it was the least she could do anyway. She knew George understood because he would accompany her when he could and sometimes Angelina came with her as well. There she was, every day at noon, at the only place she could be;
"Hello Fred dear, I'm here."
Title: Practice Makes Perfect
They had been at it all day, and it still wasn’t right. Fred looked over at his younger brother, sprawled haphazardly all over George’s bed, pointing and laughing hysterically at a shadow on the wall that looked like nothing but a big dark blob.
“Well,” Fred said to his twin, who was also watching Ron with fascination, “at least he’s not still trying to hump your leg.”
“That was embarrassing,” George said.
“For him,” Fred said. “Wait till we tell everyone else about it. And then there was that ugly torturous crying, too. He sounded like an injured banshee.”
Beside Fred, George shivered. “If I ever have to hear that sound again,” George said, “it will be way too soon.”
Fred turned back to the tiny bottles and the array of ingredients spread out on the floor of their bedroom — peppermint, rose thorns, ashwinder eggs … It all looked right to him.
“I don’t get it,” he muttered. “We’ve made love potions before. Why is this one going so wrong?”
George shrugged. “We must be missing something. Let’s just start again. We aren’t giving up.”
Fred glanced over at Ron again. Was it his imagination or were their brother’s laughs getting louder?
“You want to give him the antidote again?” Fred said to George. “I have a feeling we’re going to need to test many more batches.”
George met Fred’s eyes and a smirk grew across his face. “Why?” he said, “Isn’t that why we have three other siblings?”
Fred just snorted and picked up the peppermint to start smashing it. “How can I argue with that?” was all he said.
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