Chapter 1: Fred & George
The twins ran down the stairs of the Burrow from their room, pushing their younger siblings aside to get down first. "Hey!" young Ronald yelled as Fred ruffled his hair, slipping between him and Ginny.
Fred and George were ten and a half, as they told everyone, and would be attending Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry the next September. They skidded to a stop at the foot of the stairs, nearly bowling over their father, Arthur Weasley. "Good morning, Dad," they chimed in unison. "Happy Christmas."
Arthur had a bright smile on his face. "Good morning, boys. Ready to see the tree?" They nodded their heads enthusiastically. "You know the rules. We have to wait on the others first."
They stomped their feet in frustration and turned around to see Ron and Ginny approaching. Their oldest brother, Bill, was leaning against the wall yawning. "Where's Charlie and Percy?" George asked.
"Probably still napping," Fred answered. He stepped over to the stairs and screamed up them. "Charlie! Percy! Get up!"
"Yeah, get up!" George added. "We want to open presents!"
A few moments later, two more red heads appeared, dragging themselves down the stairs. "That wasn't very nice," Percy said with a scowl. "I was content and comfy in my bed."
Fred and George mimicked him behind his back. "Yeah, well, we all have to be here to open gifts," George reminded him.
"Right," Fred said with a nod of his head.
Their father stood watching them, still smiling brightly. He counted heads before calling their attention. "All right. We're all here so, let's begin!"
Before Arthur could even move, his seven children, all in a rush to see what they had received for Christmas, trampled him. He turned to see his darling wife, Molly, chuckling from the kitchen. Moving over, he took her in his arms. "Happy Christmas, my beloved wife," he said as he kissed the top of her head.
"And a Happy Christmas to you, my loving husband." She smiled up at him and took his hand. "Come now. We must watch them open their presents. They are going to be so surprised."
As they approached the living room, they saw paper and bows flying everywhere. The only one not tearing into his packages was Percy. He was meticulously unwrapping his gifts, taking great care not to tear the paper.
Everyone's eyes turned to the twins. They had just opened the present from their parents, their brooms. The handles were a bit pockmarked from use and the brush was a bit thin, but they didn't care. They had their first brooms! Fred straddled the handle and made noises like he was flying. Suddenly, he felt himself lifting off the ground. He grabbed hold of the wood tightly, his eyes widening in shock. It felt like the broom wanted to move. He pointed it towards the front door and suddenly he was flying quickly in that direction.
George had been studying his broom when he heard his brother laughing with delight. He looked up to see Fred flying about the room. "No fair!" he screamed as he mounted his broom. Within moments, both boys were buzzing their family, flying from one side of the house to the other.
Bill and Charlie were laughing. They knew their brothers would give Madam Hooch a run when they took flying lessons next year. Percy clucked his tongue in disgust and went back to opening his presents. Ron and Ginny were watching them in awe. Ginny would squeal with delight when one would fly by and blow her hair into the air. Even Arthur was amazed at how quickly his boys had taken to flying.
However, there was one Weasley who was not amused in the least. Molly stood with her hands on her hips, glaring at her sons. She raised her wand and waved it towards the twins. The brooms immediately came to a stop before moving over to rest directly in front of Molly. She was furious, though inwardly she was quite proud. "OFF!" she screeched. "Both of you off those brooms. It is quite obvious that you are not ready to have these yet." She waited for them to dismount before snatching the brooms from the air with her wand and sending them to the cupboard. "You can have them back when you are allowed to have them at school."
"But Mum!" they cried in unison.
"Not another word," she said firmly. "Now, go back to your other presents and don't forget to thank your brothers and sister for their gifts."
The twins stomped off to where their presents were piled and began unwrapping them with a lot less enthusiasm. Arthur sidled up next to his wife. "Don't you think you were a bit hard on them?" he asked. "It is Christmas, after all."
She turned to him with blazing eyes. They softened the moment she saw his handsome chocolate ones. "They must learn that they cannot fly in the house," she protested. "I'll return them soon. You know I can't keep anything from my boys." She leaned against him, absorbing his warmth and love.
The Weasley family sat around the fireplace after a huge dinner, relaxing and playing with their new toys. Ron, with Charlie's help, was playing Wizard's Chess against Fred and George. Bill was helping Ginny put together the small dollhouse she had gotten. Percy sat in a large, overstuffed chair reading a book. Arthur lounged in his chair smoking his pipe and reading the Daily Prophet. Ron was about to beat the twins for the third time when Molly stepped into the room. "Fred, George, may I see you a moment?"
They sat looking over the chess table and Fred growled. "We lost again," he whispered to George.
"He's cheating. Charlie's telling him what to do," his brother replied. He looked up and smiled at his mother. "Yes, Mummy." He elbowed Fred and they stood up, following Molly into the kitchen.
She had placed their brooms on the center of the table. They smiled when they saw them and rushed over, grabbing at them. Molly slapped their hands before they could get to the brooms. "You must promise to never use them in the house again. Brooms are for outside use only."
"Yes, Mum," they said in a singsong tone.
Molly grabbed them in a hug, smothering them against her chest. "I love you boys. I just don't want to see you get hurt."
"Ye', Mum." Her clothes muffled their voices as they tried to wiggle away from her.
She finally let them go, wiping away a stray tear with her apron. "Now, go. Be good boys."
The twins grabbed up their brooms and dashed from the room. "Thanks, Mum!"
Fred smiled in his sleep. George woke up and chucked a pillow at his twin. "Wake up, will you?"
Fred grabbed the pillow and threw it back. "Did you have the same dream I did?"
"The brooms?" His twin nodded. "What do you make of it?"
"Mum poisoned our food."
George tossed the pillow again, smacking his brother square in the face. "She wouldn't do that and you know it. I think we're going to have to make a quick run to Diagon Alley tomorrow."
Fred rubbed his face and frowned sourly. "Yes, I suppose so. Shall we make sure we have something for everyone on our list?"
The other boy smiled. "Yes, let's."