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Lying Josephine

Chapter Text

December 26, 1998

I suppose I deserve this... In the past few months I have lied my way through life. I've used every person who cared about me, and I have created a world that was never meant to exist for myself. I could try to argue that I did it for them, too, but we all know of that untruth. And in the end, we have all lost…

I most certainly deserve this.

One look around my barren house is all it takes to feel the full weight of my mistakes. The suitcase in my hand drops in sync with my first tear, and it doesn’t take long for the others to follow. They cascade in steady streams down my paling cheeks, pooling together at my chin before dropping silently to the floor.

A sob rips through my chest and I am bitter, though not entirely surprised, when I hear the absolute hopelessness the sound is made of. The rest of my body soon follows, caving in on itself until I become nothing more than a pile of shaking limbs on the floor of the loneliest home in the world.

But like I said, I deserve this.


May 9, 1998

Precisely one week ago today, the dream of vanquishing the greatest evil the wizarding world had ever known had finally become a reality. Light had pierced the darkness, good had conquered evil, and the souls of the victors - the survivors - were overwhelmed by a wave of hope for the future.

I never did celebrate.

There was this second - this singular shining moment - in which I too experienced the overwhelming sense of relief that comes with impossible victory. But all traces of joy were at once ripped away with a single glance at a broken body - at his broken body. And so I never celebrated -- I’ve lost too much.

I stand at his funeral, encased by a sea of mourning friends and family, all dressed in black. Yet, despite the crowds of mourners, I am still alone.

Heavy, hot, useless tears meander down my reddened face, but I do not try to stop them - worthless though they are. Crying, to me, has never been a sign of weakness, but rather one of strength. We are taught and told that tears are for the weak, for those of us not strong enough to keep emotions at bay, but I believe it is that reason alone that makes crying such an act of courage. Knowing how people will judge you, but choosing to do so all the same -- that is strength.

But, as I allow the tears to fall, I do not feel strong. Not at all.

My best friend is lying in a box.

The sun has no business being out today. Its rays should be restrained by an impervious wall of black clouds pouring torrents of unforgiving rain, blinding us with lightning, and deafening us with thunder. Yet, there it is; high in the sky, bright, yellow, and warm. The happy sun is shining away...

When the droning Ministry officiant draws the funeral to its conclusion, the masses begin to uproot and mingle, offering their mutual condolences to one another. I do not linger. Instead, I walk away, concealing myself behind a large chestnut tree. And I wait.

Hiding behind a tree does not offer optimal comfort or dignity, but I adjust myself anyway and prepare to outlast the other mourners. And as I sit and wait for the crowd to disperse, I am plagued by one continuous thought:

Fred Weasley is lying in a box.