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Regan Weasley and the Infodump of Doom - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
fernwithy
fernwithy
Regan Weasley and the Infodump of Doom
Well, it's nothing that I'm supposed to be working on, but mrs_who's suggestion of old Molly and Arthur musing on their life together got me thinking in next generation terms, and I remembered there was a Shakespeare name that I wanted to use, and... well... I figured every HP writer at some point must attempt the next generation form.

So, nothing big plot-wise, just a little next-gen ficlet, more to explore the milieu than tell a story. In other words, yes, it's an excuse to just goof around and make up new people. Told ya, not all that inspired of late. Exreme fluff warning. Nothing substantive here.




It was a special treat to go to the Burrow sans siblings.

It wasn't that Regan didn't like her brothers and her sister. Puck--whose real name was Robin, and Mum said she would have to read a play called A Midsummer Night's Dream to understand his nickname--was one of her favorite people in the world most of the time, but even a favorite person could be a bit grating when he smeared clay all over her favorite green robes.

At any rate, she had helped little Duncan learn his letters this past week, and Dad said she might have a special treat for it, since it had given him time to help Dane and Helena with their maths. She knew right away what treat she would ask for--a weekend at the Burrow. Gran and Granddad would let her bring whatever friend she chose, and she'd get to de-gnome the garden and help Gran in the kitchen and play up in the orchard. None of the cousins would be up, either. She'd have the time all to herself.

"We're here," Mum said, turning the car up a familiar London street. Regan got out of the car and walked with her arm linked through Mum's and her eyes closed, right until they got to the edge of the square.

"Ready?" Mum asked.

"Ready."

"Open your eyes."

Regan opened her eyes just as they stepped over the magical line, and the house appeared from nowhere, pushing its neighbors off to either side. Regan and her parents lived just off Diagon Alley, where magical protections were normal, but this one was amazing, and always made her smile.

It was freshly painted (Mira's parents--Uncle Remus and Aunt Dora--had it painted every year), and it was shockingly white with pink trimming. A bow-tie had been put on the snake-shaped door-knocker. She skipped up the steps, Mum a few feet behind her, and rapped on the door.

Uncle Remus opened it, and gave Mum a kiss on the cheek, then squatted down and hugged Regan as well. From the stairs, Aunt Dora, who was levitating Carina, waved and said, "Wotcher, Hermione!"

"Another fall?" Mum asked.

"I'm going to invent a permanent bouncing Charm for this one." She flicked her wand and pulled Carina in, turning her rightside up then hoisting her onto one slim hip. When she moved, Regan saw Orry, six years old now and looking very bored with his sister's silliness. She waved to him and he raised a solemn hand in return.

"Is Mira ready?" she asked.

Uncle Remus shook his head fondly. "Is Mira ever ready when you come?"

"I am ready!" Mira called from upstairs, somewhere in the direction of her bedroom. "I just need to finish packing."

"Which would be part of the definition of 'ready,'" Uncle Remus called back.

A moment later, Mira appeared at the top of the stairs, an overstuffed satchel slung over her arm and four books bound together with a leather strap dangling from the other hand. She smiled and came down the stairs.

Glided down the stairs.

Regan sighed. Mira was her best friend, even though she was two years older (and already at Hogwarts; she'd start her second year as a Hufflepuff in September), but she was so pretty and graceful and light on her feet that sometimes it was hard not to hate her. She'd once overheard Gran say that Mira looked like someone had managed to transfigure a wisp of smoke into a girl. Regan herself looked like... Gran. Solid and round, with bright red hair so bushy that it nearly stood up straight. Round glasses and short legs didn't help much. If there were ever a cyclone storm, Regan was sure that she would be left standing in the middle of field where the rest of the house and everything else had been swept away.

Mira hugged her when she came down, and smiled. "I've been reading the most wonderful book. I'll bring it--we can read it to one another."

"What's it about?"

"Oh... just an adventure," Mira said, but winked.

"We're meant to pretend not to know she's found a spicy one," Aunt Dora said.

"Ah," Mum said. "Then I suppose I should pretend not to think there are better ways to spend one's reading time."

"And I shouldn't tell Mira that Transfigured book covers have a flaw or two," Uncle Remus said. "Or remind her that she's not to do spells out of school."

"But I did it in school," Mira said cheerfully, kissing her father's cheek. "When we went last week to get your office cleaned up for the year."

Aunt Dora nodded. "That is a loophole."

Mira shrugged happily. "Shall we go?"

She led the way down the stairs to the kitchen, and Aunt Dora got the fireplace going. Mum handed Regan the floo powder that was Charmed to get past the security at the Burrow.

"Guests first," Mira said, taking a goodish pinch, but stepping back.

Regan threw her floo powder into the fireplace and called out, "The Burrow!" Then she was twirling among the wizarding fires, peeking out at bits of the world she might never see. Distantly, she realized that Mira was in the network with her now, traveling the same path, and then it was over, and they tumbled out of Gran's fireplace one after another, covered with soot.

"I'll get you cleaned up," Gran said, getting up from the chair where she'd been waiting for them, and waving her wand at their sooty robes. "Good as new."

And then there were hugs for everyone, and Regan basked in the feel of being here. Gran was cooking something that smelled lovely, and Granddad had been tinkering with something wooden, so there was a sawdust-like smell on his robes.

They spent the afternoon helping in the kitchen and then Granddad let them do some de-gnoming. Gran found this funny for some reason, and asked if Dad knew his city-born children asked to de-gnome, but Regan thought it wonderful fun. She and Mira had a competition over who could throw furthest, and by dinnertime, their arms were aching a bit.

"Have you been down to Godric's Hollow to see the new baby yet?" Gran asked, ladeling out some stew.

Mira shook her head.

"Just once," Regan said. "He spit on me."

"Well, babies do that."

"I know. I'm oldest. Duncan spit on me all the time before he got teeth."

"Is he cute?" Mira asked.

"A bit squooshed," Regan said. "And red."

"The girls are very excited about having a brother," Gran said.

Mira and Regan both looked up, surprised, and both asked, "Why?"

"Novelty, I suppose," Granddad said.

"It'll wear off," Mira muttered, shaking her head. "Orry turned into a right pain as soon as he learned to talk."

Regan rolled her eyes. Mira had been an only child for a long, long time and pretended to be annoyed with Orry and Carina, but she adored them, and everyone knew it.

"So, I'm told Duncan knows his letters, thanks to you," Gran said.

Regan smiled proudly. "I spent all day Monday and Tuesday helping him. He can say his whole alphabet now. He's almost a year younger than Puck was when he learned."

"Sounds like we've got another teacher in the family," Granddad said.

They talked through dinner, about all the cousins. Regan sometimes forgot about her cousins in France, Lisanne and Cedric--they never seemed to come visit, but Gran had got letters from them last week. "In English," she pointed out triumphantly. "Perfectly good English." Uncle Fred's oldest, named for Uncle Percy, was getting into trouble all the time, apparently, and the Potter girls, Laurel and Violet, were wild about flying with Uncle Harry (at least when they weren't busy being excited about baby Neville). Granddad asked Mira about school, and she gave him a lot of excited answers. "I didn't think it would be so different!" she said. "I mean, I've always been around the school with Dad. But it's so different, living there, and being in a House. You're going to love it, Regan. I hope you're in Hufflepuff."

After dinner, they helped Gran clean up, then went up to the twin-uncles' old room, which had two proper beds to sleep in (unlike Dad's room, which had a squeaky old bed and a permanently installed camp bed). They promptly ignored the beds and made a nest on the floor, spreading out on thick blankets, with rocks charmed to glow and give them light as the night came. Gran gave them a bowl of berries to eat and butterbeer to drink, then left them to themselves.

The books came out.

On the outside, Mira and Regan were as different as could be, but they'd always had the books. Mum had a picture of them when Regan was three and Mira five, and both of them had fallen asleep on a pile of thick books with lovely pictures in them.

"Mum got me Muggle books with pictures from Mars in them," Regan said, proudly bringing out the stack of glossy tomes.

Mira dropped her tatty paperback right away and dove in, looking with wonder at the still pictures of barren red landscapes. "Is it real?" she whispered, running her fingers over the text.

"Mum says so. It was a big project. I wish they'd had a wizard to take wizarding photos. Wouldn't you like to see it move?"

"No." Mira hovered her fingers over the photograph. "Oh, no, not at all. It looks like it never moves. It's beautiful."

"I'd like to go to Mars," Regan said. "Do you suppose witches will ever get to go?"

"Sure. We go everywhere else, sooner or later. Why not Mars? You could be the first Minister for Martian Magic."

"What would you be?"

"I'd be an explorer. I'd walk about up there, where it's red, and see what's under those rocks."

"I think you couldn't breathe."

"Bubble-head Charm," she said unconcernedly. Her eyes drifted up to the corner of the picture she was looking at. "The moons... " she whispered.

"What?"

"Two of them. Deimos and Phobos. But they're... irregular. Made of dark stuff."

"So?"

"So, they'd never be full. Daddy could go to Mars and not transform."

"Or breathe, without a Bubble-head Charm."

Mira frowned, then grinned broadly. "A giant Bubble-head Charm!" she said. "We could make one that would cover a whole wizarding town!"

"Why just wizarding?"

"Well, everyone would have to help keep it up, wouldn't they?"

"Muggles could do something else, couldn't they? I just think my grandmother Granger would love to go to Mars. I mean, we could all explore together, couldn't we? And back in town, we can make the big bubble charm and they can make the machines and things that we'd all be able to use."

"Right, right..." Mira flippd through pages. "We could," she said. "We really, really could! Except for the Statute of Secrecy. We can't get there without them, and we can't very well work together if they don't know what we're doing."

"Oh, right." Regan sighed. She pulled over one of the paperback books Mira had brought. "Is this the one you meant back at your house?"

"Hmm? Oh, yes. It's nothing, really. Just a bit of... well, you know."

"Where?"

"Page three-hundred-and-fifty-two. And a bit on page four-hundred-and-twenty." She thought about it. "Oh, and six-hundred-and-forty-three's a bit steamy as well."

Regan checked the pages, stopped reading when she started blushing, and put it aside with a giggle. Mira was still somewhere on Mars. "I wonder if magic would work properly there."

"Maybe differently," Regan suggested.

"Right--you'd have to be careful flying in that gravity. You could just break away and go into space."

"I think on Mars, I'd be able to fix my eyes and not need glasses."

"Why?"

"I don't know why. I just think I would. And I'd be thin, too, like you."

"What for? It's annoying. Nothing fits right. I always look like I'm wearing some old banshee robe. I'll bet with less gravity, my hair would be sweet and curly like yours, though."

"On Mars, I'll bet that baby Neville wouldn't spit on me."

"Too dry to waste spit," Mira agreed. "And I think Orry would have to smile more, as it takes too much gravity to frown so much." She exaggerated a downturned pout (looking extraordinarily like her brother and father when she did).

"I think Uncle Charlie might finally get married on Mars."

"That might be possible. But for your uncle George, I think we'll have to go to Jupiter."

"You could marry Uncle George when you grow up," Regan suggested. "Then everyone would be married in. Plenty of Weasleys to go around!"

Mira giggled. That she had a horrible crush on Uncle George was common knowledge. "And Duncan could marry Oda Asgard, so Aunt Luna's batch will be in as well."

The door opened. "What are you girls giggling about?" Gran asked.

"Duncan's going to marry Oda, and we're all going to live on Mars," Regan said.

"Three is a bit young to marry," Gran said, and left the room with a shake of her head.

Regan pulled another book out from the bottom of her stack (the ones above it falling down in a friendly jumble). "So," she said, "Is it off to Jupiter now?"

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Comments
silverhill From: silverhill Date: July 29th, 2004 11:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's hard to keep all the names straight and figure out who goes where. Other than that, it's lovely. :)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: July 29th, 2004 11:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, the hard part was to remember while writing that Regan takes all these people perfectly for granted, and wouldn't have any need to explain it all. For clarity's sake (though I should have found a way to clarify in the prose, I guess), these are the kiddies I made up:

OBHWF
Bill/Fleur: Lisanne, Cedric
Charlie: Just started dating seriously
Percy: RIP
Fred/OC: Percy, Jane, Elaine, Andrew
George: Confirmed bachelor
Ron/Hermione: Regan, Dane, Helena, Robin, Duncan
Ginny/Harry: Laurel, Violet, Neville James

Other familes
Remus/Tonks: Mira, Orion, Carina
Luna/OC (Mikkel Asgard): Trygg, Oda
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: July 29th, 2004 11:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
Though I had no place to mention this, Hermione was gung-ho on the Shakespeare theme names, but Ron put his foot down on naming their first son "Hamlet," so they compromised with "Dane."
leelastarsky From: leelastarsky Date: July 30th, 2004 12:33 am (UTC) (Link)
I enjoyed this, and I have to say I really liked the names you chose. I think my favourite was Puck though. I could really see Ron and Hermione with a Puck. ;~D
I particularly liked the girls' musings on Mars. Especially the consideration that Remus might not have to transform there. Interesting.
silverhill From: silverhill Date: July 29th, 2004 11:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, the hard part was to remember while writing that Regan takes all these people perfectly for granted, and wouldn't have any need to explain it all.

That's definitely the way to do it.

It reminds me of a high school project where we had to be pen pals with other students in the class and pretend we were writing letters in the late 1920s to early 1950s. And my "pen pal" sent me a letter saying "Pearl Harbor was bombed today."

Sometimes laying out the information isn't realistic.
kelleypen From: kelleypen Date: July 30th, 2004 06:02 am (UTC) (Link)
Is Neville dead? You have the makings of quite a universe hear. Maybe some more stories?
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: July 30th, 2004 06:47 am (UTC) (Link)
Yeah--Neville and Percy in this scenario are both dead.

I like Regan (plump, bespectacled girls--unite!), but I'm hard-pressed to think of an actual story about her in the post-Voldemort world. I originally had a title--Regan Weasley and the Book of Time--but nothing really came into my head. Maybe I'll brainstorm it later.
alphabet26 From: alphabet26 Date: July 30th, 2004 11:50 am (UTC) (Link)
Fred/OC: Percy, Jane, Elaine, Andrew

Yeah, you know who Fred's wife should be? Angelina.

Not that I, you know, care about the F/A ship at all... ;)

I really enjoyed the ficlet--the Weasley grandkids are lucky to have grandparents like that. Regan was adorable; I really liked her. All the talk about Mars was just too cute, and Mira speculating about how father wouldn't transform was so endearing. Good job.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: July 30th, 2004 11:55 am (UTC) (Link)
I thought about F/A, but thought I might be pushing it by having R/T, R/H, and H/G all in the same piece of writing...
izhilzha From: izhilzha Date: July 30th, 2004 09:43 am (UTC) (Link)

Oh, I like this

Though I think my favorite moment had to be this one:

It was freshly painted (Mira's parents--Uncle Remus and Aunt Dora--had it painted every year), and it was shockingly white with pink trimming. A bow-tie had been put on the snake-shaped door-knocker.

#12 has been in need of re-decorating for a while...I love that it's been taken over by Remus' and Dora's brood. :)
mafdet From: mafdet Date: August 2nd, 2004 11:50 am (UTC) (Link)
I love the names you chose. The Lupin kids' names are a nice compromise with the Black tradition and yet not names that are too outlandish. "Mira" and "Carina" are actually used as RL girls' names.

Though in my universe, Remus' and Tonks' firstborn is named "Sirius." :D

I also love the redecoration of Grimmauld Place. Pink trim, indeed. Old Alya Black must be conniptioning.
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: August 2nd, 2004 11:55 am (UTC) (Link)
I have a bit of dialogue in my head during her first pregnancy, when Remus catches her with a star name book.

R: You... looking for Black family names.
N: It's an inherited disease. I need help. The hormones kick in and the star books come out. Mum should have warned me.
R: Well, she did name you Nymphadora.
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