“DRACO KISSED YOU?!” George yelled again turning bright red to match his hair.
“Y-yes. Didn‘t you know that? Isn’t that why you and Harry got in a fight?” Sam asked, tears still sliding down her cheeks.
“No, we fought because of your friendship with Draco, not your relationship.”
George had calmed down enough to trust himself to ask the main question flitting around in his head.
“Are you and Draco in a relationship, Sam?”
“No! Yes. Maybe… Oh, I don’t know George, I’m so confused!” Sam cried fresh tears welling up in her eyes.
George took Sam’s shoulders and pulled her to him, holding her close like he had hundreds of times before. But something felt different this time. Maybe it was because he wasn’t crying himself and therefore he didn’t need the comfort of someone close-by. Or maybe it was because Sam wasn’t crying about Fred, she was crying because of another man.
“Why don’t you tell me what happened and maybe together we can figure out what to do next,” he said, pulling back from Sam and smiling at her.
“O-ok,” she said with a bit of a hiccup. Sam told George everything starting from the moment she came home to find Harry, Ron, Hermione, and Ginny in her home to when Draco kissed her, to her visit with Mrs. Weasely the night before.
“It was horrible knowing he was across the hall, but he didn’t come into my room or even knock on my door. It’s like he knew I was crying because of him,” Sam finished an hour later.
“Sam,” George started slowly, thinking through every word he said, “the way it sounds, and from what I know of Draco, I think he cares for you great deal.” George knew that now was not the time to tell Sam about that day outside of the restaurant when Draco confessed his feelings for Sam to George. “You know him. He doesn’t do anything or say anything that he doesn’t mean.”
“He- he doesn’t?” Sam asked with a final hiccup.
“No, and you know that,” George answered looking down into Sam’s red-rimmed eyes and smiling.
“Then, why did he practically run from me after we kissed?” she asked frustration lacing her voice and fresh tears falling from her eyes.
This stumped George. He knew he couldn’t tell Draco’s secret, not yet anyway, besides it would probably be too much for Sam to handle at the moment. George also knew that he couldn’t lie. He had never been one to be quick on his feet that were Fred. So, George decided to tell the next best thing to the truth, a half-truth.
“I think he may have just felt like you weren’t ready, which I think is true from what you just told me.”
Sam looked down at her feet, suddenly very interested in her laces.
“I’ve been so lonely, though,” she said quietly. Her voice was so small and weak and choked with tears, George felt his heart go out to her. ”This past year has been so hard. It’s not fair!”
George jumped a bit at the sudden volume in her voice, but he stayed quiet letting her continue with her rant.
“I’m a good person, or at least I try to be! I was orphaned so young. I don’t have a single memory of my parents. Do you realize that the only times I’ve ever seen my parents are when I’m about to die or through that connection with Voldemort?!” George fought a twitch at the name out of habit. “And the only time I’ve ever heard them speak was when I was surrounded by dementors!”
“I’ve lost almost every single person that I’ve ever looked up to, besides your parents. I’ve watched people get hurt, and worse get killed because of me, because of who I am! I lost the one man in the entire WORLD I felt like I could spend the rest of my life with!”
“I’ve hated this past year. I can’t find happiness in anything I do. I do things because they except of me. The only thing I did for any other reason was Draco and look how that turned out!” Her breathing was ragged as she went on trying to hold back the flood of tears.
“I just hate pretending. I hate trying to pretend that everything is alright; everything is fine when it’s not. It’s NOT fine! And it can never be fine because he’s gone, George. He’s gone and he can never come back,” Sam yelled finally shouting out what had been brewing inside of her for over a year, the intensity of it completely knocking the breath out of her.
George stood silently staring down at the crying girl in awe. He knew that she wasn’t lying. Sam couldn’t be happy in a place like Hogwarts where everything, every place held memories both good and bad. He knew that she was unhappy with her life and he felt sick knowing he couldn’t help her.
“Sam,” he started in a whisper.
“Sam!” he said louder when she didn’t look up.
“What?” she questioned.
“You are the strongest most talented person I’ve ever had the honor to meet. I know your life has been hard and I can’t imagine what you’ve gone through, but I know that somehow, someday, someway, you’ll find a reason to smile easily again. Whether it’s with Draco, or with a job at the Ministry-,” Sam pulled a face at the mention of the Ministry of Magic. Even under its new regime with Kingsley Shacklebolt as the Minister she hated anything and everything to do with the place, “-I have no idea and it’s not my job to find out, but I want you to know, that no matter what you’ll always have me and Draco and my mum is yours for the taking if you decide you want her too.”
Sam smiled finally, wiping her eyes with the back of her hand before standing up and grabbing her purse. “Thank you, George. You’ve really been a huge help. I’m sorry for interrupting your time with Angelina.”
George cringed with guilt and muttered so that only Sam could hear,”Honestly, I forgot she was here.” This made Sam giggle. “But before you go,” he continued standing up and going to the bookshelf where his copy of her journal was kept, “I have something for you, that I think you need to read.”
George took a small shoebox from the middle of the shelf and opened the lid. Inside were bits and pieces of things that reminded him of his twin, including balls of pain that was part of the first practical joke the two had played on Ron at the age of 4, wrappers of Honeydukes candy from their many adventures sneaking into Hogsmeade, an owl-post order form from when Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes was just beginning and 2 letters. One was grey, wrinkled, obviously well-read, and addressed to him; the other was crisp, clean, white and addressed to Sam. George took the white envelope out of the box and returned to his place beside Sam who had sunk back onto the couch as she recognized the handwriting.
“Fred wrote these two and one more from my mum the day before the Battle for Hogwarts. He gave them to me and told me to give it to you at a certain time.”
George paused remembering that day:
“What’s this?” George asked holding up his hands and refusing to take the three envelopes addressed to himself, his mother, and Sam Potter.
“I can’t tell you. It’d ruin the surprise,” Fred answered sarcastically, again trying to shove the letters into his brother’s hands. “Please take them,” he asked desperately, again failing.
“Not until you tell me what they are,” George said stubbornly.
Fred heaved a sigh and fell back onto the couch in their small two- bedroom flat. “Fine, but you have to promise that you’ll do as I say and take them.”
“Deal,” George answered holding out his hand and shaking Fred’s.
“They are letter of instruction should something happen to me during this horrible war.”
George was speechless; Fred was always a ‘live in the moment’ type of person and rarely thought much further than the next meal.
“It’s only a ‘worst case scenario’ kind of thing, but I feel like it needed to be done and soon.”
George was beginning to shake his head slightly, trying to argue with the depressing thought his brother had been thinking when writing these letters.
“Nope, don’t even think about arguing with me, because my mind is made up, the letters are written, and you shook on it.”
George would always regret making that deal. He felt that be may have jinxed his brother. It had taken a month before Fred could even think of the letters and another week before he could read the one addressed to him.
“I’m not going to let you read mine and I’d appreciate it if you read yours when you get home or when you’re by yourself.”
“Why didn’t you give it to me earlier? Why did you wait a YEAR to give me his letter?”
“Whoa, whoa!” George said trying to calm her down before she could get rile up again. “He told me to. In my letter, as a postscript he told me to hold yours until a certain time,” George paused trying to let Sam cool off before continuing.
“And that time would be…?” she prompted impatiently.
“The time when you are most confused, most angry, the most scared…The time when you begin to possibly have feelings for someone else.
Sam sat quietly staring down at the white envelope in her hands with her name written in his tight messy scrawl. She could just imagine what all he’d written to her. She was afraid to open it. She was afraid that it would go on and on and that she’d never be able to finish it; she was afraid that it would be short and unfulfilling for her. She didn’t want to read about how she should move on without him; how he was in a better place and would always watch over her. She didn’t want to imagine the myriad of emotions he went through writing it.
In the few minutes Sam sat silently she thought of hundreds of reasons why she should throw it in the fire and never give it a second thought, but one thought made her hesitate and ultimately made up her mind; he had written it. His hand had touched the parchment; he had put what had been on his mind on paper for her to read in the future. He had written it for a certain reason, and he would have the answers for all the questions she had at the moment.
“Thank you George,” Sam said again, standing up and moving toward the front door. “I think I’ll go home now. I need a nap. I’ll see you on Wednesday, right?” she asked verifying their lunch date.
“Of course, Sam. And my door is always open if you ever need me.”
“I know,” she said with a quick hug and a small smile. Then with a small wave and a nearly silent pop she vanished.
George turned around and went to his bedroom door. He opened it to see Angelina fast asleep on his bed. He quietly took off his shoes and jumper and carefully crawled into bed next to her, slipping his arm around her waist. She immediately reacted to his touch, turning over and laying her head on his chest.
He breathed in her scent allowing it to consume him before letting sleep pull him into a comforting darkness.
Mrs. Weasley took the dirty dishes from her husband’s hands before the huge pile could fall to the floor and create another mess for her to clean.
“Go outside with the other, Arthur. I’ll finish up in here.”
His hands wound their way around her waist as she turned back to the sink; He lowered his head until his hot breath tickled her neck, making her shiver in pleasure.
“Brunch was superb, my Mollywobbles,” he said in a low husky voice. It still amazed her that after nearly 25 years of marriage, he could still make her feel like a little school girl sneaking around the castle.
Mr. Weasley continued to kiss and nip at her neck when a crash was heard from the backyard and baby Victoire and Teddy started crying simultaneously and Ron yelled, “Oops. Sorry, Charlie.”
Charlie’s answer was lost in the wind but Molly and Arthur could imagine the vile language spewing from his mouth at whatever Ron had done now.
“You had better go separate them, Arthur, or there’s going to be another fight,” Molly said ushering her husband out the door.
As he left, Molly locked all of the doors leading to the kitchen and put a Muffliato spell on the room before quietly whispering “I solemnly swear that I need your help”. And there, at her crumb covered kitchen table sat Sirius Black looking young, happy, and not as if he’d spent 12 years in Azkaban surrounded by dementors. His face was fuller and his cheeks had a rosy tint to them. His eyes were clear and sparkled in the sunlight filtering in through the window. Molly was reminded of how very handsome he was; that is, until he opened his mouth.
“Hello again, Mollywobbles,” he said with a mischievous glint in his eyes. She couldn’t help the blush that rose in her cheeks. “Where is everyone? I thought you held a weekly brunch or something,” he said ignoring her discomfort at his use of her nickname.
“They are all outside enjoying the nice weather while I finish the dishes,” she answered indicating the pots, pans, and other dishes currently washing themselves in the sink behind her.
Sirius merely nodded his head remaining silent as if he was waiting for Molly to continue with her thought.
“What exactly are you doing here, Sirius?”
“I’m here to help,” he answered nonchalantly.
“Help who? You’re dead, Sirius, and I’m pretty sure I’m the only one who can see you!” Molly was starting to get frustrated. Sirius had always had a way of getting under her skin.
Sirius had appeared in her kitchen then night before nearly giving her a heart attack. Before she had been able to recover Sirius had told her that the next day, when she was alone, she was to say that ridiculous phrase and he would explain everything and then he had shimmered away.
Molly had seriously doubted her sanity and wasn’t going to do what he had said but she figured that it couldn’t hurt to try.
“You are the only one who can see me, because you are the only one who needs me.”
“I don’t need your help, Sirius. I’m fine,” Molly argued.
“You are,” Sirius agreed, “but Sam is not.”
Molly could not argue with him on this point. She knew Sam. Sam rarely showed weakness and Molly knew that for Sam to cry so openly could only mean that she was desperate. But what could Molly do and why did Sirius come to her of all people?
“Alright, I agreed with you about that,” Molly started with a nod, “but why did you come to me? Why not Harry or Sam herself, or Draco even?”
Molly watched as Sirius’ shoulders rose and fell with a breathless sigh, and she could tell he was choosing his words carefully.
“Do you remember what you told me that first night Sam and Harry stayed at Grimmauld Place and we explained what the Order was-”
“And they wanted to join then,” Molly interrupted nodding her head at the memory.
“I said that they weren’t your children and you said-“
“-that they were as good as,” Molly finished, interrupting again.
Sirius nodded. “You and Arthur are the closest thing to parents Sam and Harry well ever have. But those two are different from your own children. They have experienced and done things that your kids- aside from Ron- could ever fathom.”
Molly watched as Sirius’ eyes saddened slightly before he went on. “And on top of that, Sam and Harry themselves are as different from each other as a goblin and a house elf.” Molly nodded agreeing.
“Sam has always been very good at keeping secrets. She’s mysterious and quiet and you never quite know when she’s up to something. She is just like her mother in that way.”
“Harry, on the other hand,” Sirius went on, “is his father, made over, I could always read in James’ eyes what he was thinking, and with Harry it’s no different.”
“Sirius,” Molly started, “I already understand all this. What does this have to do with helping Sam?”
Sirius shook his head, like he was disappointed that Molly hadn’t caught on yet.
“Molly, this is your first…let’s call it a lesson, shall we?”
“My first- but I thought you were answering my question?!” Molly was starting to get fed up with Sirius; he had always had a way of grating on her nerves.
“I came to you, Molly, because you’re the only person who can speak to both Sam and Harry like separate individuals, with an objective viewpoint.”
At the confused look on Molly’s face, the dark haired man burst out laughing as if this whole thing was one big joke. However, when Molly looked ready to kill him- again- he sobered up and went on to explain. “You see them and can talk and connect with them as a mother figure, Molls. And the reason I came to you over everyone else is because Harry wouldn’t want to focus on Sam if I were to go to him, Sam would deny needing any sort of help, and Draco has a lot on his plate already.”
Mrs. Weasely’s confused expression immediately changed to one of shock and surprise, and then she smiled, finally happy to have Sirius Black in her kitchen.
Draco couldn’t believe how nervous he was. True, he had never really met Fred officially until last night and Draco seriously doubted that Fred wouldn’t do anything that would hurt Sam in any way, but for some reason he couldn’t rid himself of the nervous fluttering in the pit of his stomach.
When Draco had heard Sam emerge from her room even earlier than she was normally up, Draco had opted to stay in his room until he was sure she had left the small loft for the day.
He felt relief mixed with disappointment when Sam hadn’t knocked on his door to wake him up or tell him where she was going like she usually did. He was sure, however, that she had stopped in front of his door multiple times.
He still wasn’t sure about what he would say to her, whenever he finally plucked up the courage to talk to her again. He hoped that Fred would help him solve that mystery.
He couldn’t decide if he was more excited or nervous to have his first lesson.
He quickly showered and dressed in the shared bathroom. He saw that his roommate had accidently left out her perfume. Draco knew she rarely forgot to put her toiletries away. She had explained that she could not fairly expect him to put his stuff away if she did not do the same.
Seizing the rare opportunity, Draco picked up his wand and summoned a spared white cloth handkerchief. He sprayed a few squirts of the perfume onto the cloth and returned the small bottle to the spot Sam had left it on the countertop.
Raising the now slightly damp cloth to his nose, Draco inhaled Sam’s scent before he pocketed it. He then went about finishing his morning routine.
Sundays were the only day that Sam and Draco spent apart from each other. While she would go to the Burrow and visit with her family and friends, he would normally stay in the flat and catch up on some reading or he would visit his parents in Azkaban.
Today, Draco did neither. He had visited his parents last week and had no new books to pass the time so he sat by the large French doors that led out to the back patio and waited for the Ministry to open to visitors at 10 am.
As he sat watching cars full of Muggles pass by he couldn’t help but let his mind wander. If someone had told him two years ago that he would be living in Muggle London with Samantha Potter and getting dating advice from her dead lover he would have paid for that person’s stay at a top mental hospital. But Draco could not, for the life of him, imagine a scenario that he would prefer to the one he was now in.
Draco had never been an unhappy child, a little lonely perhaps, but not unhappy. He had spent most of his childhood in his nursery at Malfoy Manor. He was taught by his mother. She taught him how to read, to write, and basic mathematics. She taught him etiquette and how to act properly whenever in the public eye. Because of all the time they spent together, Draco and his mother had a very close relationship.
Draco had never been as close to his father, however. In fact, Lucius Malfoy had hardly even spoken to his son unless it was to criticizee him about something Draco had said or done during dinner or at a part with important people in attendance. Lucius had first started taking an interest in Draco and his studies when Draco turned 10.
Draco could remember it well.
Draco wsa in his nursery playing on his new toy broomstick under the watchful eye of his mother who was working at her desk in the corner grading Draco’s most recent vocabulary test.
Without warning Draco pointed his broom upward and shot towards the ceiling. Surprised by the sudden heighth of his broom, he began to panic, and in doing so, lost his grip on the handle.
As he began to fall towards the ground he heard a deep voice yell out a spell that immediately slowed Draco down in midair and allowed him to land softly on a large stack of pillows that his mother had conjured with a flick of her wand.
“Draco! Oh, my little Draco, are you alright?” Draco could hear his mother’s shrill voice yelling for him even as he struggled to sit up.
“He’s fine Narcissa,” came the deep voice that had uttered the spell that had slowed Draco’s swift decent to the ground. “Can’t you hear that he’s laughing, and I’m sure he’d love to do it again, wouldn’t you Draco?”
Draco, having finally disentangled himself from the large pile of pillows looked up into the steely grey eyes of his father. Draco nodded his head enthusiastically, remembering the many times his father had reprimanded him for speaking out of turn.
“I asked you a question, Draco. I expect you, from now on, to answer me vocally. Is that understood?”
“Yes, s- father,” Draco said meekly, not meeting his father’s gaze.
“Speak up, Draco; I can hardly hear a word you’re saying.”
“Lucius, please. Speak nicer to Draco, he’s only a boy,” Draco’s mother interjected on his behalf, but his father would not hear of it.
“He’s hardly a boy anymore, Narcissa. He’s ten now, is he not? I expect him to start acting like an adult, like a pureblood.”
When Draco saw that his mother was about to argue, he quickly stepped in between them.
“No, Mu- Mother, Father is right,” Draco turned to face his father, “I apologize for not speaking clearly, Father, it will not happen again.”
Lucius, looked down at his son who so resembled him. “Well, see that it doesn’t, I can’t have my own son embarrassing me in front of important people.”
Turning to his now silent wife, Lucius addressed her. “I will be taking over Draco’s lessons from now on, Narcissa.”
“What will you be teaching me, Father?” Draco asked, excited to finally be able to speak freely in front of his father.
“I will teach you how to act the part of a pureblood wizard. You will learn our family line; you will learn why we are better than mudbloods and blood traitors. You will no longer learn menial muggle reading, writing, and mathematics. And you will no longer be allowed to play in your…nursery. You will have a room made up for you in the West Wing and you will not be permitted back here, under any circumstances. You will be expected to join your mother and me for breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the dining room fully dressed and without tardiness starting tomorrow.”
Draco nodded his head taking in his father’s words and practically vibrating with excitement. He threw his arms around his father’s waist, and shouted, “I promise to listen to everything you teach me, Father. I can’t wait to get started!”
Lucius Malfoy could only look down in disdain as his only son wrapped his small arms around his waist. Then, when Draco finally let go and stepped back with a large smile he turned swiftly on his heel and swept from the room his cloak billowing out behind him.
The next year of Draco’s life was centered on Draco learning how much better he was than everyone else because of his heritage and his last name. He barely believed in the stuff his father was telling him, but wanting to impress and be adored by his father he did everything he could to do what his father wanted.
Draco loved both of his parents but he knew that his father would never change his beliefs, no matter how much he hurt everyone else.
A light tap on the kitchen window broke through Draco’s mental monologue. He stood up from his favorite Lazy-Boy armchair and made his way through the loft to the window, unlocking it with a flick of his wand he quickly untied the letter from the small owl’s leg.
The time is now. Same place as before. Apparate straight in, I’ve lifted the defenses.
Draco wasted no time. He knew who had sent the letter and exactly what it meant. He grabbed his coat from the hat rack from by the door and apparated. He felt a slight pull around his navel as he passed through the Ministry’s defenses but nothing else happened and when he opened his eyes he was standing in front of the Veil of Death.
“You almost didn’t make it, Malfoy,” a voice said from behind him.
Nearly jumping out of his skin, Draco spun around and faced the redhead reclining on the nearest stair.
“Will you please stop doing that?!” Draco answered angrily.
“Sorry, but it’s the only real kick I get to have anymore,” the wicked grin that spread across Fred’s face belied his genuine feelings of remorse.
“How did you raise the defenses, anyway? Isn’t that like…impossible?” Draco asked changing the subject.
“So is getting twenty Death Eaters into Hogwarts. Besides, I’m dead, mate, I can do just about anything,” Fred said ignoring Draco’s slight cringe at the mention of his most shameful mistake.
Draco looked Fred over. The latter was wearing the same outfit as the night before, and there seemed to be dirt stained to most of his outfit. He was wearing comfortable loose-fitting jeans, an old pair of brown trainers, a white T-shirt that was torn across his chest, and a plaid button down that was unbuttoned with the sleeves rolled up, exposing his forearms.
“See something you like, Malfoy?” Fred said with a grin.
“You have a lightening bolt scar, there on your chest,” Draco pointed out, unable to help but state the obvious.
The grin immediately slipped from Fred’s jovial visage. He looked down and fingered the scar that covered his sternum.
“This is what I looked like when I died. Nobody knows it, but when you’re hit with the Killing Curse you’re still alive for a split second and then…” Fred lowered his head, but not before Draco saw the tears welling up in his eyes.
“So, what is it that you’re going to teach me in these lessons, Fred?” Even though Fred was using Draco’s surname to address him, Draco felt it polite and appropriate to call Fred by his given name.
“Well, you think you know everything about Sam, right?” Fred said, thankful for the subject change.
He didn’t like dwelling on sad feelings and the day he died was the worst. Not just because he died, but that day Sam had died as well, and when given the choice she chose to live over starting her eternity with him then.
“I think I know a great deal about her,” Draco said, breaking through Fred’s depressing thoughts.
“Oh, really?” Fred asked. “What’s her favorite color?”
“Her favorite food?”
“Your mum’s beef stew with the onions, potatoes, and carrots,” Draco answered becoming more smug with every question he got right.
“What’s her favorite spell?”
“Her favorite shirt? Her favorite book? Do you know what memory she uses when she conjures her patronus? Do you know what side of the bed she sleeps on, even if it’s a twin? You know a lot about her, mate, but you don’t know everything. That is what I’m going to be teaching you. I’m going to tell you what she was like before I met her, what she was like when we were hiding our relationship with everyone and what her favorite things are. You’re also going to learn how to read her body language to know what kind of mood she’s in.”
Draco could feel his mouth opening in a small “O” as he realized how much he didn’t know about the girl he shared a bathroom with.
“Wait,” he interrupted his new teacher, “you can tell what kind of mood she’s in by her body language?”
“Yeah, there were times, when I was still a student, when I’d see her over by the fire from across the Common room and I just knew that she needed to calm down. So, I’d send her an owl, just so she knew that someone was looking out for her. If she was really having a bad day, she’d give me a look, tell everyone that she’s going to bed early and then fly her broom to the AstronomyTower and I’d meet her there a few minutes later.”
“But that’s not why I brought you here. I want to start from the beginning.”
At Draco’s confused look, Fred elaborated what he wanted.
“Why don’t we start by you telling me what you know about Sam’s childhood…?”
Sam sat at her favorite corner booth in her favorite muggle café. She was sipping at her cinnamon flavored hot chocolate looking at the crisp letter in front of her.
She had been studying the three letters that spelled her name for over an hour. She knew exactly where there was a slight hesitation mark at the lower corner of the”A” and she wondered what had been going through his mind. She knew it was Fred’s handwriting; there was absolutely no doubt in her mind.
The waitress had been to her table four times since she had entered the café, and was even now watching her with a mix of concern and curiosity. Sam barely noticed as the young blonde walked over.
“Susan?” the girl asked, calling Sam by her Muggle alias. She had decided soon after moving in with Draco that having an alias would be a smart idea. She had decided on Susan Patterson who was a writer and so could frequent the coffee shop but often took long vacations, to explain where she went for nine months every year.
“Yes, Kathy?” Sam answered not looking away from the envelope in front of her.
Kathy looked between Sam/Susan and the letter propped up on the salt shaker and voiced her question. “What’s the matter? I mean what’s in the letter? You’ve been sitting here for like an hour and you’ve hardly moved.”
Sam forced her eyes away from the slightly bent corners of the letter and looked at the girl in front of her.
“It’s a letter…from my fiancé-“
“Oh! I didn’t know you were engaged!” Kathy interrupted a broad smile splitting her features.
Sam fought back the tears Kathy’s excitement brought to her eyes, and answered the girl in a strangled voice.
“I’m not, actually. I should say my late fiancé.”
Kathy’s face fell as she realized her mistake. “I am so sorry, Susan, I had no idea.”
Sam allowed a shaky smile to light up her face. “I didn’t know you didn’t. He was killed a year ago and apparently the day before he died he wrote this letter and gave it to his twin, who only just now gave it to me.”
Kathy was speechless, unable to think of any intelligent thing to say that would either help or comfort her friend.
“Would you like me to stay here while you read it, maybe read it to you or something?” Kathy asked kindly.
“No. This is something that I have to do by myself. But thank you for offering.”
“Alright, but you let me know if you need anything at all.”
Sam didn’t respond, only nodded her head that she would, although she had no intention of taking Kathy up on her offer.
Deciding that she could not sit there all day and look at the outside of the letter, she slowly detached her hand from the, now frigid, mug of hot chocolate and picked up the envelope.
She turned it over and looked at the backside. She could not imagine the feelings of turmoil Fred had been experiencing when he had sealed this letter. She imagined him licking along the edge of the flap and then pressing his lips to it in an attempt to seal in his love for her. The thoughts running across her brain were enough to bring tears to her eyes yet again but she made no movement to wipe them away.
Taking her butter knife from the tabletop in front of her, she slipped the blade inside and quickly opened the envelope. She pulled out three pieces of parchment, two that were covered in his writing and a third being a picture. She ignored the picture for now and picking up the letter she began to read.
My Dearest Samantha,
You are probably very pissed at me right now, aren’t you? I don’t know why I asked, because I know that you are. I’m dead, aren’t I? That’s not funny. Sorry.
I purposefully asked George to hold on to this for a while, so you can’t be mad at him. I don’t know why but I know that you’re going to need this letter someday. For my own selfishness I hope it’s very far in the future. I don’t think I’m ready to let you go. You may not believe it, but just writing this letter is killing me. (I know bad pun, but I can’t help it.) I don’t want to think about you falling for another bloke, the idea of anyone touching you in any way makes my blood boil.
I love you. I mean it in the past, present, and future tenses. Nothing you do or say will EVER change how I feel about you. You made me the man I am. Because of you I aspired to be someone that you deserve.
From the moment I met you in Diagon Alley I knew that I was destined to love you. You looked so beautiful that day, with you’re silly glasses pushed up on your head, and your hair in that retched clip. –I really hate that thing. Every time you wore that thing, it took every ounce of control I own not to go up to you and take it out of your hair. I remember walking around with you looking for Hagrid. I could hardly take my eyes off of you. From that moment, I was smitten. I honestly don’t think I helped very much; I was much too busy stealing glances at you.
I wanted to know anything and everything about you. I wanted to know what scared you so that I could protect you from it. I wanted to know what your favorite dessert was so that I could make it for you everyday.
I wanted to know you better than anyone else could ever even hope to know. You are the reason that I am the way I am. I felt that you deserved the best of the best. You deserved a man who knows you, one who can be there to wipe away your tears, and make you laugh.
I want you to know that I did everything on my bucket list.
1. I want to grow a beard/mustache combo (remember my sixth year during the Triwizard Tournament?)
2. I want to laugh until I cry.
3. I want to cry until I laugh.
4. I want to own my own joke shop. (And, last I checked, it is doing very well.)
5. I want to save someone’s life.
6. I want to help someone accomplish their destiny.
7. I want to make peace with Percy.
8. I want to apologize to Professor Flit wick for levitating him every time I saw him my second year.
9. I want to see Sam sleep in my arms. (Remember that night we snuck out at the Burrow and slept out by the pond until we were woken up by the gnomes?)
10. I want to fall in love with Samantha Potter
I did it. I reached every goal.
Don’t feel guilty about my death. Please. I know that when something happens to someone else you tend to take all the blame onto yourself. This is NOT your fault.
Remember how much I truly love you.
Eventually you will meet someone who makes you smile by just being in the same room. He will make your eyes shine with happiness and warmth. His touch will send shivers up your spine. He will be your second chance at your soul mate. He will complete you in a way that I never could. Don’t push him away because you’re “not ready” You and I both know that that is bollocks. Go for it. Love him like you loved me. I know that I will always be in your heart and know that I will always be watching over you.
You are beautiful and special. You are resilient, confident, smart, brave, and you trust in the good in all people. Don’t let that part of you go because I’m not there to remind you every day. He will do that. He will take care of you, and he will love you.
If there is one thing that you could do to make my death worth something it’s this: don’t forget to smile. You have the most precious smile in all of existence and I feel like you don’t share it enough with the rest of the world.
I love you, my Sam.
Sam finished reading the letter, tears falling freely down her face. She slowly set aside the two pieces of parchment she was holding and picked up the picture that she had discarded earlier.
It was the picture of the two of them at the Yule Ball her fourth year. In the picture, the mini-Sam was dancing around mini-Fred. She watched as the picture her stood on her tiptoes and kissed him chastely on the lips before she went back to dancing and laughing merrily.
Turning the picture over, Sam saw more writing, captioning the picture.
My beautiful, smiling dancer. Samantha Potter. Yule Ball, Christmas, 1994.
Looking at the picture, Sam noticed that it had been unfolded and folded many times. And she knew that Fred had looked at this photo every night since the day she had left him during Bill and Fleur’s wedding.
Picking up the envelope from the table, Sam gently replaced his letter and her new picture of the two of them. She then paid her tab, leaving a generous tip for Kathy and walked out of the café and apparated home.