In the wee hours of the night, the fire in the fireplace of the Burrow roared briefly to life before dying back down.
“What a night,” Arthur Weasley said to himself as he stepped out of the fireplace. “I really hate this night.”
“Oh come on Arty. This night isn’t that bad, after all it’s the New Year,” a voice said from the direction of back of the room.
Arthur quickly pulled his wand and aimed it towards the direction of the voice. “Who’s there?”
The oil lamps spread out around the room suddenly lit themselves.
Arthur stared at the people in his sitting room. “Gideon. Fabian.”
“It’s been a long time, hasn’t it Arty,” Fabian said as he and his brother sat down on the couch.
“Molly’s probably asleep. I can go get her,” Arthur said as he pointed in the direction of the stair. “She’ll be so happy to see you.”
“Let our sister sleep,” Gideon suggested. “This is a matter between us.”
“What is it?” Arthur asked as he walked over the armchair and sat down.
The brothers looked at each either for a moment. “Some things are happening tonight. Big things,” Fabian admitted.
“What are you talking about?” Arthur asked.
“Changes,” Fabian answered. “One small change… and it’s going to change everything in the wizard world.”
“What do you mean? Is it why you’re here? Why you’re visiting us now when you never did before?” Arthur asked
Gideon shook his head. “We visited every year; Arty. There just hasn’t been a reason to show ourselves until this year.”
“And this one small change you mentioned, that’s why you’re here now,” Arthur said.
The ghosts of the Prewett bothers nodded their heads.
“So what is this small change?” Arthur asked.
“Can’t tell you,” one of the brothers answered.
“Its top secret,” the other brother chimed in.
Arthur rubbed his head as if to ward off a headache. “I wonder if it’s a family curse,” he said softly.
“Yes,” the twins said simultaneously.
Arthur blinked a couple of time in confusion. “The small change is a curse?”
“No,” one of the brothers said. “Twin speak.”
“Or at least that what great grandmother Prewett said,” the other twin finished explaining.
Arthur shot his brothers-in-law a look that was a mix of amusement and exasperation. “What can you tell me about this small change and how it will affect my family?”
The twins shared a look between each other.
“Not too long ago a couple approached us and some other spirits asking for help. Seems that their family was being warded against spirits so they couldn’t visit them,” Gideon explained.
“Nothing too unusual there, especially if the spirits are being a problem,” Arthur commented.
“If they’re being a problem,” Fabian grumbled, “but they won’t. Dumbledore has a lot to answer for.”
“Dumbledore?” Arthur said as he looked at the two brothers. “What does the Headmaster have to do with any of this?”
“More than you would think,” Fabian commented.
“Right now that’s not important, what is important is Molly and our niece and nephews,” Gideon said.
“Is that why you’re here? Are Molly and the children in danger?” Arthur demanded.
The two brothers share a looked before Gideon say, “Arthur do you trust us?”
Arthur nodded his head. “Of course.”
“Then you need do exactly what we tell you to do,” Gideon stated.
Arthur nodded his head in agreement
Fabian leaned forward. “Percy, who I still think you, should have named Angus,” he said.
“Should have called him Jonathon,” Gideon grumbled.
“Angus Jonathon Weasley?” Fabian suggested.
“Or Jonathan Angus Weasley,” Gideon countered.
“Stop,” Arthur commanded in frustration. Once he had the twin’s attention he said, “What about Percy. What do I need to do to protect Molly and the children?”
“Oh it’s simple. You need to make an unbreakable cage, put Percy’s rat in it and then take to Madam Bones and tell her you caught an illegal animagus,” Gideon stated.
“Do remember to make the unbreakable cage strong enough to resist an animagus changing back to human form,” Fabian said. “You would be surprised how many people don’t realize that an unbreakable cage really isn’t unbreakable. I think it’s something like water proof, where it’s really water resistance until certain depth.”
“You’re thinking of that tail that James told us about Padfoot and his run in with a potion ingredient provider and how he escaped,” Gideon chimed in. “Before then I never realized that anything unbreakable was really breakable with enough force behind it.”
“It was a bit like that time we tried that potion that guaranteed you would not suffer a hangover, no matter how much you drank,” Fabian said.
“Of course it was only good on wizard alcohol. Didn’t work on Muggle drinks,” Gideon said as he rubbed his head.
“Yea but that was a fine night for a pub crawl,” Fabian said fondly. “Never did get to that last pub.”
“You know we could do it now,” Gideon suggested.
“Haunt the pubs?” Fabian replied.
“It would be a haunting pub crawl or would it be a ghostly one?” Gideon said thoughtful.
“We would need to include a few mates in it, it would only be right,” Fabian suggested.
“You do realize that the pubs have closed hours ago,” Arthur pointed out.
“He has a point,” Fabian said.
“That’s true but the pubs across the pond would be open,” Gideon suggested.
“Yes but we would have to deal with the ghost of the Yanks over there and you know how they feel about the British,” Fabrian stated.
“So we buy first round,” Gideon replied.
“That would work,” Fabian said before a thoughtful look came to his face. “Do you have any money?”
“I thought you did,” Gideon replied.
The twin ghost turned and looked at Arthur. “Can you spare a few quid, Arty?” one of the twins asked.
“I don’t think they use quids over there,” the other twin chimed in.
The first twin nodded his head. “He’s right. Can you spare a few whatever they use over there? You know we’re good for it.”
“I seem to remember you owing me 100 pounds. And you’re not good for it. You’re dead,” Arthur countered.
“Well there is no need to get insulting about it,” one of the twins said with a pout.
The other twin elbowed his brother. “We could head to Scotland and visit a refinery,” he suggested.
The first twin rubbed his head. “But angels’ hit hard,” he said before turning to his brother-in-law. “A piece of advice Arty when you die, never ever get in between an angel and his share.”
“His share?” Arthur said in confusion.
“The angel’s share of the whiskey from when it’s in a barrel and aging. Good stuff but the angels can get a tad bit testy when you just want a drink,” the twin explained.
Arthur shook his head as he held his forehead. “Now I remember why I always carried a headache potion whenever there was a chance that your two would appear.”
The twins looked at Arthur with the identical ‘kicked puppy’ look. “You don’t love us anymore,” they said at the same time.
Arthur groaned while he shook his head, and then stopped and looked directly at the twins with an evil glint in his eyes. “You’re right. I don’t love you. I love your sister, Molly who is the light of my life. And I love all the children she bore for me.” Arthur took a breath before saying. “You two rate about the same as the time that Molly tried to create split-pea soup and she burnt it.”
The same look of disgust appears on the brothers’ faces. “I remember that soup,” Fabian said with a trace of horror.
Gideon nodded his head. “She tried to make us eat some before we could escape.”
“Yes, you did and you left me behind to eat it,” Arthur growled softly.
The twins share a look before turning back to Arthur. “Sorry,” they said. “But you have to remember at that time it was every man for their selves.”
Arthur once again shook his head. “So all I need to take Scabbers to Madam Bones and tell her that he’s an animagus.”
The twins nodded their heads. “In an unbreakable cage that is strong enough to stand him trying to escape.”
Arthur nodded his head. “And then what?”
The twins share a look between themselves that for those who knew the twins read them asking the same question.
“Have a pint or two…” one of the twins said
“Or three or more,” the other twin chimed in.
“For us while you watched what happens,” he first twin finished what he was saying.
“And how will I know what I’m watching for?” Arthur asked.
“Oh you’ll know, Arty. You’ll know,” the twins said with an evil grin.
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