Chapter Twenty Two

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"I don't think I've ever seen you clean this much." Anora said from where she sat on the kitchen counter sipping her hot chocolate. She watched as Charlie raced all around their small house tidying everything from the throw pillows on the sofa to straightening the dishes in the cupboards.

"Because I know my mother is going to say something if I don't."

"She isn't going to say anything about the house." she told him.

"You don't think so?"

Anora shook her head.

"Why not?"

"Because she'll be too preoccupied by your hair." Anora laughed. "Charles, your hair! It's so unruly."

Charlie's cheeks turned red. "It doesn't look bad."

"I didn't say it did, I'm not the one who tells you to get a haircut, it's your mother." she reminded him.

"Ugh, does it look better if I pull it back into a ponytail."

"I think that will only make matters worse, the fact that you can pull it into a ponytail only shows how much longer it's gotten since she's last seen you."

He groaned.

"I suggest spiking it up, real high like those muggle rock stars..."

Charlie her a look. "Ha ha, you're so funny."

"I'm glad you agree." she said setting her mug down and hopping off the counter. She walked over to him and pulled the rag from his hand. "Relax Charlie, you're worrying too much. Your mother is going to say something regardless, it's just who she is. Only you have to do is what you normally do."

"What's that?"

"Just stand there, smile, and nod."

"Yeah, you're right, that usually seems to do the trick."

"Oh Charles, I know you were in Gryffindor but that doesn't mean you had to grow a mane yourself." Anora said in her best Molly Weasley impression.

Charlie chuckled. "You better hold off on the voices when she's here."

"I would never do such a thing in your mother's precense. " Anora smiled. "I can't go and lose my title as the favorite."

"You the favorite? Oh I don't think so!"

"I do."

"You realize that even if I'm not the favorite she has several other children to choose from."

"Yeah, and none of you are up to par-"

"Up to par!?" he screeched as Anora laughed. "You little devil."

"I would think you would know a joke when you heard one." she said with a slight eye roll collecting her mug and leaving to the living room area, to sit on the floor before the fire.

"Sometimes it's hard to tell with you, you're like Fred and George. I can never tell if you're being serious now."

"Ouch, " she frowned. "That hurt my feelings."

"See, I can't tell if you're being funny now or serious."

"No, that actually really hurt my feelings!" she huffed crossing her arms.

Charlie grimaced as she he walked over."But I was only-"

He stopped when he heard her laughing.

"Why do you do this to me?" he whined.

She looked up at him. "Because it's too easy sometimes, Charlie. Really, I've had so much worse said to me back when we were in school do you think something as silly as being compared to your brothers would really hurt my feelings."

"I'm going to get you for that." Charlie narrowed his eyes at her.

Anora heard noise outside as Iggy leaped up to look out the window. "Oh I don't think we have time for that Charlie."

"Why do you say that?"

She pointed to the door. Charlie turned around just in time to hear the sudden knock.

"Because they're here!" she sang.

Charlie walked over to the door to see his parents outside the door trying to brave the cold.

"Oooh Charlie!" Mrs. Weasley wrapped his arms around her son, dragging him into a bone crushing hug. Anora chuckled to herself before arising as Mr. Weasley made his way over to her for a hug.

"How are you, dear?" he asked her during the embrace.

"I've been good. How about yourself?"

"Doing well. Keeping out of trouble?" he pointed at her.

She laughed. "Yes, somewhat."

"Good. "

Charlie was released from his mother as she left to go drag Anora into another one of her famous hugs.

"Hi. I missed you too." Anora said patting Molly on the back and trying to gasp for air.

When she finally let go, Anora pulled away to collect her breath as Molly glanced around the house.

"It's a bit drafty in here." she said looking to Charlie.

"No, Mum, it's not really, you were outside for a minute, it's cold out there, but it's nice and warm in here. If Anora finds it warm in here that's the usual gauge we go by, because she's always cold."

"I wouldn't be so cold if someone didn't make me walk through the snow with them because they are-"

Charlie covered her mouth, making her roll her eyes. "Why don't we get you guys something warm to drink and you can sit by the fire?" Charlie offered them.

He slowly pulled Anora back to the kitchen giving her a sideways glare as she beamed up at him.

"Oh don't give me that face, I was only teasing." she said grabbing two clean mugs.

"Yeah well, keep it to a minimum right now, okay? I don't need to be scolded around Christmas."

"Charlie Weasley, look at that hair of yours!" Molly's voice rang out.

Anora snorted. "Too late."

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