Ron watched in awe as Charlie drew on a map of their neighborhood, He circled a house with the chalk he was holding.
Every year the morning before Halloween they would do this. Charlie would draw a map of their neighborhood on the chalkboard that their mum normally used to jot down everyone’s chores and errands that she had to do.
The Weasleys took trick-or-treating very seriously. Percy, Ron, Fred, George and Ginny all watched without blinking as Charlie finished the last piece of the map.
“All right,” said Charlie, using his wand as a pointer to indicate to each house. “Mum’s letting us go down to the muggle neighborhood, so Percy, you’re on babysitting duty you have to keep an eye on Ginny.”
“I’m not a baby,” Ginny protested, taking her thumb out of her mouth to talk. “I don’t need no sitter.” She glared at Percy, who rolled his eyes.
“Believe me, Ginny, I’m not happy watching you either,” he grumbled, pushing his glasses back up the bridge of his nose.
Ginny scowled and went back to sucking her thumb like it was covered in chocolate.
Ron wasn’t listening to Percy or Ginny. Instead he was gaping along with Fred and George. The muggle section! They had never been allowed that far. Normally they just went to the Diggorys’ and the Fawcetts’ and then came home.
They never went to the Lovegoods’. They always gave out butterbeer corks and other weird things.
“So I talked to some of the neighborhood boys who gave me the information, according to them we want to skip this house,” said Charlie pointing his wand at a house marked the Grangers. “Because they only give out toothbrushes and apples, and this house”-he indicated to a house named Dresden- “because they always ask for a trick and never give out treats.”
“Should be outlawed,” muttered George, Fred nodded in agreement.
“I’ve got the good pillowcases and we’re leaving at five, which means if we stick to the schedule we should be done and back home by seven,” Charlie finished. He faced them. “Any questions?”
“Yes how much time did you allot to each house?” asked Percy, raising his hand.
“Thirty seconds, just enough time to get the stuff and leave,” said Charlie.
“Is it enough time to say thank you?” asked Percy. “Just because we’re trick-or-treating doesn’t mean we should sacrifice good manners.”
Charlie closed his eyes, opened them and gave his brother an exasperated look. “Yes Percy, he said through gritted teeth. “It’s plenty of time to say thank you.”
Percy lowered his hand looking very smug.
“All right everyone,” said Charlie. “Be back down here at five, not five oh one, because if you’re late we’ll leave without you.”
Ginny’s lower lip quivered. “But what if I in the bathroom?”
“Oh for Merlin’s sake, just be here!” said Charlie, leaving the room, muttering things under his breath that had to do with Merlin’s left buttock.
Granger’s house 4:00.
Hermione was running around the house, one hand one her witch’s hat to keep to from falling off as she helped her mum with the apples and toothbrushes.
She gave her mother a grin. “I can’t wait to hand these out mummy, when do they start coming?”
Mrs. Granger didn’t really have the heart to tell her daughter that normally children didn’t come to their place, she knew that due to the fact that her and her husband normally gave out toothbrushes, and apples children would skip their house.
Hermione normally spent her Halloween at a friend of theirs’ house that hosted a party. This year though Hermione had been adamant about staying home.
Mrs. Granger hoped that one would come. The last thing she wanted to see was Hermione’s disappointed face when no one came to the house, especially since Hermione had spent all day setting out the toothbrushes and apples in neat little rows on the table.
“I see the first ones,” said Hermione, who had been watching from the window. “I’m going to sit outside, Mummy just so they know we’re home.”
Mrs. Granger gave her daughter an affectionate look. “Go ahead dear.”
Silently she hoped that one person would see Hermione and come to the door. Just one.
Granger’s house 4:30
Hermione was disappointed but not ready to give up.
Granger’s house 5:00
Hermione’s lower lip was quivering, Mrs. Granger knew this was a warning sign for tears, and tried to get Hermione to come inside.
“Hermione love, they probably don’t know we have such good stuff,” said Mrs. Granger, sitting down next her daughter and giving her a hug.
“I’m going to sit here,” said Hermione crossing her arms and legs, a stubborn look on her face. “Someone will come, you’ll see and I’ll see,” Hermione mumbled, so low that Mrs. Granger barely heard it.
Mrs. Granger hoped that Hermione was right.
The Burrow, five o’clock
“Percy what are you?” asked Charlie giving his brother a bewildered look.
Percy had managed to put on one of his father’s old suits. Even though Percy was tall, the suit still hung around like bits of navy blue skin, and the tie dropped down to his knees.
“I’m Minister of Magic,” said Percy, as if the answer was obvious. “What are you?”
Charlie had a tail and a helmet that had spikes on it. “A dragon, dummy.”
Ginny came downstairs in a green turtleneck and Ron was wearing an orange turtleneck and was holding his toy broomstick.
“I’m a Quidditch player,” they chorused, and they glared at each other.
“Well, I Harpie,” said Ginny as if this settled the matter.
“I’m a Cannon,” said Ron, beaming proudly, and stinking out his chest so everyone could see the Cannon embalm that was sewn onto his shirt.
“Can we go already?” asked Fred, George nodded in agreement,
“What’re you?” Asked Ron as they tramped outside, Charlie in the lead with his map.
“I’m Fred,” said George, putting his arm around his twin.
“And I’m George,” said Fred, putting his arm around George.
“Let’s go already,” said Charlie. “March everyone.”
“My robes are too long I can’t march,” Percy grumbled. “Ginny! You’re getting jam all over my hands.”
“Then don’t holds it!” Ginny answered, glaring at Percy. “I no need a sitter.”
Percy grabbed Ginny’s hand and mumbled things about Charlie and his arse.
“All right, that’s the Grangers’ we’ll skip that,” said Charlie a while later, when they had reached the muggle neighborhood.
Ron who was eating a candy apple looked to the house and saw a small bushy haired girl wearing a muggle witch costume, she looked so disappointed and alone that Ron’s heart just felt for her.
“Are you sure Charlie?” Asked Ron, in between mouthfuls of a candy apple.
“Not unless you want toothbrushes,” said Charlie, whose nose was buried in his map. “Now let’s go this way.”
“I’m going,” said Ron.
“No you’re not,” Charlie sighed. “We’re going-”
“Yes I am,” Ron called back as he marched toward the Granger’s house.
“Merlin’s saggy left-”
“Charlie!” admonished Percy sternly. “Children are present!”
“Where?” asked Ginny, looking around her, confused.
“You have ten seconds!” Charlie called after Ron, who waved back to indicate that he had heard.
“Trick or treat,” said Ron.
“You came!” said the bushy haired girl giving him a lovely smile.
That was a smile that made Ron’s stomach flop around as if there were butterflies in it.
“I knew someone would come!” said the girl, who looked rather pretty in her witch’s hat. “Just one second!”
Ron waited and soon enough the girl came back with her mother and a handful toothbrushes and apples.
The girl’s mother gave Ron a smile that was nice but for some reason wasn’t quite as nice as the girl’s.
“We have all different colors!” said the girl, showing Ron all the toothbrushes. “Which one do you want?”
Ron chose an orange toothbrush, and tried to leave.
“Now remember,” said the girl, stopping him. “Brush three times a day or else your teeth will decay and you’ll eat nothing but pudding for the rest of your life.” She gave him a you’ve-been-warned look.
“I like pudding,” said Ron, biting on his candy apple.
“It’s not the good kind of pudding, believe me,” said the girl. “And remember to eat an apple a day.”
“I have an apple right here,” said Ron, holding up his candy one.
“That’s a disgusting amount of sugar,” said the girl, inspecting it.
Ron felt offended for his apple.
“Hurry it up, Ron!” Charlie called over. “We have to go and get the rest of the houses!”
“Oh, do you think your siblings will want some toothbrushes and apples?” the girl asked.
And before Ron could say ‘definitely not’ she had gathered up several apples and toothbrushes and was walking towards his siblings.
“Hello!” she said warmly. “What color?”
Before long everyone had a toothbrush and an apple, George inspected it with disgust.
“Apples? We don’t need any stinking apples,” he muttered, before throwing it in his bag.
Ginny had apparently heard him because when the girl put an apple in her bag she said, “Apples? We no need no stinkin’ apples.”
Percy groaned and glared at Fred and George who tried their hardest to look innocent.
“Bye all,” said the girl, waving at them from her front porch. “And remember to brush!” she called after them.
The next morning,
Apparently Ginny had thought what she had said the night before had been very clever because she said it again at the breakfast table.
“Here’s your toast Ginny dear” said Mrs. Weasley putting two pieces of bread on her plate. “Now let me butter it for you.”
“Toast? We no need no stinkin’ toast” said Ginny grinning at her mother.
Mrs. Weasley gave Ginny a firm look and Ginny’s smile faltered.
“Fred and George said it first!” she said, pointing at them.
Mrs. Weasley turned back to her sons. “Well, that’s the last time I let you go to the muggle section.”
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