Thursday, 1 November 2012

The Awkward Moment When …

So. This is a story I wrote. About a year and a half ago? When I was an active member of the ANU Harry Potter club, I participated in something called a fangasm exchange. In it, everyone writes down three 'prompts' on a piece of paper and chucks them in a hat. A prompt can be anything, basically, that you want to be included in the fangasm. Luna, Yule Ball, moshing. Brooms, Divination, romance. Harry, Draco, Neville. WHATEVER.
After putting all the prompts in the hat, everyone then pulls one out and, provided it's not their own, has to take those three prompts and create something with them. Mostly it's fanfics, sometimes it's art, a mix CD, a dance, anything creative involving those three things.
I got:
Harry Potter
Arthur Weasley
The Talk
I wrote a fanfic. It is below.
Please be kind. I lost my soft copy of this and found the hard copy a couple of weeks ago and I had to retype it and I'm sure there are mistakes from typing it out so forgive me.

The Awkward Moment When …
A poorly constructed story by Adrienne May

Molly Weasley is a big believer in the idea that you can’t get a man to do a woman’s job – and in most cases, she’s got the woman’s job covered. The following is a time when, try as she might, she just wasn’t fit for the task.


It was another long, sweet summer, seeming all the brighter for the threats that now lay in the past. The dark, figurative cloud over the lives of wizards and Muggles alike had figuratively drifted away, and even the rainiest, stormiest day couldn’t darken the spirits of most people. Every day seemed like a blessing; except for today, in the life of one unfortunate nearly-man. Not that he knew it yet.

From across the breakfast table, Molly observed the way he looked at her daughter, and began happily entertaining thought about him one day becoming her son. This kept her occupied until he looked up at her expectantly.

“Mrs Weasley?” said Harry. Molly started, realising she’d been staring blankly, smiling like a fool and holding a piece of toast halfway to her mouth for an awkward number of minutes.

“Sorry, yes, dear?”

“I was just wondering if you could pass the butter. Are you alright?” he asked.

“Yes, yes, of course,” she flustered. “There you go. Would you like anything else?”

“No, thanks, Mrs Weasley,” Harry said, as he turned to look back to Ginny. “I’ve got all I need right here …”

As the young couple shared a secret look, Molly blushed, embarrassed by the tone of his voice and the implication beneath it. At the same time, she remembered the previous night, when she’d woken to the creaking of the stairs, almost as if someone had been walking from Ron’s room down to Ginny’s. As she looked at Harry and Ginny, giggling and whispering to each other, a terrible thought began to dawn on her. What if they had been …? No …

Throughout breakfast, Arthur had been sitting contentedly, amicably interrupting the conversations of the others. He wasn’t paying any attention to the lovesick teens, and did not seem to realise what could have been happing in Molly’s very own house just the previous night. She seemed to be the only one who noticed, and the more Molly thought about it (though she tried not to think about it in too much detail), the more resolutely she came to the conclusion that something had to be done. And this might be a time where she wasn't the woman for the job.


“Diagon Alley!” proclaimed George, as he stood in the fireplace. He whooshed out of sight after offering the family a polite salute, and that left Molly with only Ginny to get rid of. She’d already taken Arthur aside and told him what he had to do; it was now just a matter of getting Harry on his own.

“Hey, Ginny, would you like a game of Quidditch?” asked Harry, as he snuck up behind her. Her flushed nod was his answer, and Molly took the opportunity before it passed.

“Actually, that sounds like a wonderful idea. But first, Harry, I wonder if you wouldn’t mind giving Arthur a hand with moving something. I’d do it with magic, but you know how he likes the Muggle experience. Don’t you, Arthur?” Molly nudged him.

“What’s that? Oh, yes. Isn’t it wonderful how they have those little cars with spikes on the front to pick up things. They’re called knife-lifts, you know, Molly. Jolly useful things, I should imagine. Though a bit nasty when they’re cursed …”

“Yes, yes, Arthur, knife-lifts. But can you show Harry into the other room where the thing that needs to be moved is?” Molly said. “Now, Ginny, you’ll have to go out and get the brooms ready, won’t you? I’ll send Harry out when he’s finished, all right? Go on then.”

Molly didn’t miss the eye roll from Ginny, but she left anyway and Harry walked into the lounge room, where the ‘thing’ to be moved supposedly was. As Harry walked away, Molly pulled Arthur aside and whispered at him reminders of things to say.

“Don’t forget to tell them to be safe.”

“Make sure you remember all the spells they could use.”

“Remind them that we have seven children, who we love very much, but it is a lot of laundry.”

“Oh, tell him that we can hear everything in the house, too. And that we don’t want any mischief.”

“Also, say that –“

“Molly,” said Arthur tiredly, “I know. Just calm down. It will be fine. Now let me go and talk to the boy.”

She slowly let go of his sleeve and he walked into the lounge room. Molly went over to the sink to pretend to do dishes, but as soon as Arthur closed the door behind him, she rushed over to it, pulling an Extendable Ear out of her pocket as she went.

“—ted to talk to you about a couple of, um, things. Why don’t you sit down?” Arthur was nervous and Molly just hoped he would remember everything he had to say.

“Is everything all right, Mr Weasley?”

“Oh yes, Harry, everything is fine. I really just wanted to talk to you about the fact that you’re staying with us all summer.”

“But I’ve stayed with you for most of my summer’s since I started Hogwarts,” said Harry, sounding slightly confused; though in Molly’s opinion, not as confused as he should be.

“We know that, but, er, you haven’t really stayed with us before when Ron isn’t here, have you? And I suppose that just seems a bit different to us,” Arthur explained. Or rather, thought Molly, attempted to explain. She might not be able to have this chat with Harry, but she was sure she could do better than Arthur was.

“Oh … Would you like me to go? I’m sure I can meet Ron and Hermione in Spain? I know Ron doesn’t really want to be there anyway. Otherwise I could go stay with George? Or Bill and Fleur?” Molly was worried Harry would leave, and was about to open the door with the intention of assuring Harry that of course he had to stay, but Arthur got there first.

“No, Harry, don’t be ridiculous! Of course we want you to stay! If it wasn’t for you, I’d never have known about knife-lifts! But, er, there are just a few things I wanted to, uh, talk to you about.” There was a pause, during which Molly knew Arthur was trying to collect his thoughts. “Well, it really just has to do with your, ahem, relationship with Ginny. I know your uncle would never have talked to you about, er, things like this, and even so, he would only know the Muggle ways of doing, uh, things. But anyway, I just think it’s time we had a chat about some,” Arther coughed, “feelings, you might be having. They’re completely normal at your age. I’ve gone through the same thing, heh. But you’re at a time when your feelings don’t just affect you, but my daughter as well, and we just wanted to make sure that you’re, uh, fully informed.”

He was rambling, and Molly was getting frustrated. Ginny would come back in soon, and she’d be furious if she knew what was happening.

“Erm, Mr Weasley … Are you trying to give me The Talk?” Harry’s voice sounded equal parts amused and horrified at the idea.

“Well, yes, all right then, Harry. I suppose I am. Molly and I just want to make sure you’re, ahem, safe, and that you know what you’re doing. Not know what you’re doing like that!” Arthur added, in response to a look of shock that Molly was sure would have crossed Harry’s face. She nearly sighed in exasperation, but stopped herself, not wanting to be heard.

“We just want to make sure you know the consequences for your, er, actions,” Arthur continued.
“Oh … Um, okay?”

“I know it seems out of nowhere but things do seem to be serious with you and Ginny and we just want to make sure you don’t end up having more children than me and Molly, heh.” Arthur attempted to inject a joke into the conversation, and Molly could almost hear Harry’s embarrassment. “So, I just want to make sure you know some simple spells to help avoid any, uh, problems. Here, I’ll write them down for you. There are books you can get on this sort of thing as well. In fact, I think we might have one around here … But anyway, Harry, for safety, fortis ovum is quite useful - though I’ve found that tempus inferre is a bit easier, er, on the lady. Also, if you’re looking for a little more excitement, domus ropa is an excellent way to go.”

This statement was followed by one of the most awkward silences Molly had ever experienced, and she wasn’t even in the room; but at least that meant Arthur couldn’t see how red she was. Clearly, Arthur had decided that if he just talked quickly, he could get it all over and done with. Unfortunately, that tactic had taken the conversation to a new level on uncomfortable.

“Um. Thanks, Mr Weasley. I think …”

“Well, uh, that’s fine. Just between you and me, those Weasley women are quite fiery, which I know, at least with Molly, can lead to some, ahem, mischief in the bedroom. Molly’s passionate personality makes for some interesting experiences of an evening, let me tell you.”

“Please don’t,” said Harry quickly. Mr Weasley suddenly seemed to remember what he was saying and to whom he was saying, as he hastily tried to wrap up the ‘discussion’.

“Yes, well, I guess that’s everything. Oh, except, and don’t tell Molly I said this, but if you’re, uh, going to sneak into Ginny’s room at night, be a bit quieter about it.”

There was a beat of silence during which Molly could only suppose Harry was awkwardly trying to explain his behaviour.

“Don’t worry about it; a quick silencing spell should do the trick. Now, I think that’s all. Thank you for the help with the, er, shelf, Harry. Best get outside to Ginny now, eh?”

“Yeah, Mr Weasley. Glad I could, um, help?” Harry replied. Molly heard them get up and walk to the door, so she rushed back to the sink, clearing her features and the stuffing the Extendable Ear back into her pocket. She turned around as the door opened, saw Arthur slipping Harry a piece of paper with some handy spells written on it, and two of the reddest faces she’d ever seen. Harry ducked straight outside without making eye contact, and Arthur slumped down in a chair as if exhausted.

“Thank you, dear,” Molly said, “but I think you forgot to mention –“

“Molly, my love, I said everything I needed to,” sighed Arthur, and Molly supposed that perhaps in some situations, a man might do the job just fine.


Later that night, Arthur awoke to a slight creaking on the stairs, what could be a small whine as a bedroom door opened, and a hastily murmured silencing charm. He looked at Molly, who was sound asleep, and smiled before returning to sleep himself.

And upstairs, and man’s voice whispered roughly, “Domus ropa.