Fandom: Harry Potter
Characters: Victoire Weasley, Teddy Lupin, Molly Weasley, and Andromeda Tonks.
Word Count: 2,733.
Summary: It's a beautiful spring day during the childhood of Victoire and Teddy. Rather than playing, however, the two friends have the unfortunate burden of having to burry and bid farewell to a beloved pet.
Author's Notes: This story contains mild spoilers for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
Bright, beaming sunlight of a May morning poured in to the room of young Victoire Weasley. The room, fashioned chiefly in shades of light pink and white, was remarkably clean for a child of Victoire’s age, if only you ignored the odd doll or stuffed animal laying about the hardwood floor. A slight, blonde girl who was no other than Victoire Weasley herself was standing on her tippy-toes, gazing in to a large white cage that resided on the top of her dresser. The cage belonged to Spot, Victoire’s pet rabbit who was named, rather cleverly Victoire thought, for the black spots that adorned the rabbit’s fur. Spot was lying motionlessly in his cage. Victoire assumed the rabbit was asleep, but the seven year old girl saw no harm in awaking him from his slumber so that she could play with him. Victoire pulled a stepping stool out from the corner of her room and put it down on the floor in front of her dresser. She firmly placed her bare feet on top of the stool so that she was able to reach in to Spot’s cage and scoop him out. Victoire had expected Spot to awake when she touched him. She had expected some sort of stir or jump but there was none. Victoire bit her lip and glanced down at the rabbit. She barely had a moment to think about what might have happened to Spot and what she should do before she heard her grandmother’s voice calling to her.
“Victoire, dear! Teddy’s here!”
Victoire frowned down at Spot and gently placed him back inside. He must have just been sleeping. He was simply in a very deep sleep, that was all. Teddy would know how to wake him up, he’d know what to do, Teddy always did. Teddy was a whole three years older than she was, he was ten already and she was still only seven. This three years’ advantage gave Teddy wisdom that she lacked, wisdom about things like waking up sleeping bunnies, Victoire was sure. “Coming!” she called back and then hurried out of her room, down the stairs, and to the front door.
Teddy stood alongside his grandmother in the entry way. “Hi Teddy! Hi Mrs. Tonks!” Victoire greeted brightly.
“Hi Victoire,” Teddy smiled.
“Hello, sweetheart,” Mrs. Tonks greeted.
Victoire flashed Mrs. Tonks a polite smile before her eyes flickered to Teddy’s hair which was a funny sort of green color today. Victoire had always been jealous of her friend’s ability to change his hair color. If she was able to do what Teddy did to his hair, Victoire would change her blonde hair to pink whenever she felt like it. Teddy never changed his hair to pink, and Victoire thought this was a waste. When she questioned him as to why he never did, Teddy explained to her that pink was for girls. As Victoire’s grandmother led Teddy’s grandmother in for a cup of tea, Victoire grabbed Teddy’s hand and pulled him through the sitting room. “C’mere I have to show you something,” she said. Victoire pulled Teddy along all the way up to her bedroom and stopped in front of Spot’s cage, only then letting go of Teddy’s hand. “Spot’s asleep and I can’t get him to wake up,” she told him anxiously.
Teddy frowned a bit, “Can’t get him to wake up?” he asked.
“Uh-uh, he won’t wake up; think you can get him to wake up for me?” Victoire asked, looking up at Teddy.
“I can try,” Teddy said, but the slightly troubled look on his face did not fade, this made Victoire feel very uneasy. Victoire shrugged it off, however, and scooped Spot out from his cage and gently handed him to Teddy. Victoire looked at Spot expectantly as Teddy touched around his neck and chest and then frowned deeper than ever.
“Victoire…Spot’s…he’s…he’s dead,” Teddy informed her as gently as possible.
“Dead?” Victoire repeated vacantly, staring at her motionless rabbit. “No, no I don’t think so, I think he’s sleeping,” she countered.
“Vicky, he is,” Teddy said.
“N..no..” Victoire stuttered, her voice cracking. “But…but how’s he gonna play with me if he’s dead?” she asked, tears beginning to spill down from her eyes. Carefully, Teddy lied Spot back down inside his cage and then walked over to Victoire and wiped the tears from her face.
“Don’t cry,” Teddy frowned.
Vicotire, however, only began to sob at that. “Sp…spot was a good rabbit!” she cried.
“A great rabbit, so you know what?” Teddy asked.
“What?” Victoire inquired miserably.
“Spot’s going to go to rabbit heaven,” he told her.
“Rabbit heaven?” Victoire sniffled and wiped her eyes.
“Yeah! It’s a great place where all good rabbits go when they die, it’s this big, green field, even bigger than your yard, and they get to hop around and play with other bunnies,” Teddy told her enthusiastically.
“Really?” Victoire asked in a small voice.
“Really,” Teddy said with a firm nod.
Victoire frowned again and sniffled loudly “I…I’m still gonna miss him,” she quivered.
“I know,” Teddy frowned. “And he’s gonna miss you too, but at least he’s happy, right?” Teddy asked.
“Right,” Victoire nodded. After a moment’s silence, Victoire asked “Whadda we do now?”
“We…” Teddy stopped and took a moment to think. “We give Spot a funeral,” he said solemnly.
“A funeral, for a rabbit?” Victoire asked, giggling a bit.
“Absolutely, he deserves one don’tcha think?”
“Well, ‘course I do! But don’t we need a priest?” Victoire asked.
Teddy thought for a moment. “I can be the priest.”
Victoire giggled at the sheer silliness of Teddy being a priest, but then nodded her head. “’Kay,” she said. “What else do we need for a funeral?” Victoire asked as she couldn’t be quite sure, she wasn’t a frequent funeral-goer, but then again neither was Teddy. Still, Teddy had those three years of wisdom and knowledge over her, so Victoire figured he’d know what to do anyhow.
“Well, I think we need to wear black,” Teddy said.
“I have a black dress!” Victoire said brightly. “And you…you can wear one of my daddy’s working robes!”
“Won’t he be mad?” Teddy asked apprehensively.
“Nah, he won’t care,” Victoire shrugged.
“All right, if you’re sure,” Teddy said.
“I am!” Victoire said happily and pulled her black dress out of her closet and laid it down on the bed. “I’ll be right back,” she said and then exited, reentering a few moments later with a pair of Bill Weasley’s black work robes that looked as if they could hold ten Teddys. Victoire did not seem to notice this size issue as she handed them over to Teddy. “You can just put ‘em on and then wait in the hall while I change,” she told him. Teddy nodded and slipped in to the robes which fit him about just as well if he had wrapped himself up in a small tent. Teddy shuffled out of the room, tripping over the robes as he went. Walking in a full grown man’s robes when you were naught but a small boy was no easy task, but Teddy eventually made it out.
Once Victoire was dressed she stepped in to a pair of black dress shoes and emerged from her room, carrying a shoebox in her arms. Victoire smiled for a moment when she saw that Teddy had changed his hair to black for the occasion, but she quickly frowned again as she said “I didn’t have anything better to put him in…nothing that I could burry in the g…ground anyway.”
Teddy instantly flashed Victoire a brilliant smile once he heard her voice starting to crack again. “A shoebox is perfect for a rabbit funeral, and that’s one nice shoebox you’ve got there!” he told her.
Victoire smiled a bit. “Really?” she asked.
Teddy nodded. “Come on, we can burry him out in the yard,” he told her.
“Okay,” she said and followed Teddy downstairs and out of the house. The Weasleys yard was big, to say the very least. There were three other houses nearby their own, but they were a good distance away and so the Weasley house was environed by lush green grass and a few large trees rather than other houses and sidewalk. Teddy and Victoire walked past the bright flowerbeds Victoire’s mother spent so much time carrying for. Victoire was always sure to play far away from those, her mother loved those flowers and even Victoire had to admit it would be a shame to ruin them by having a ball trample them. Victoire stopped just as they passed the flowerbeds. “So where exactly should we burry him?” she asked.
“I don’t know, whadda you think would be a good spot?” Teddy asked.
Victoire thought for a moment and looked around the yard. Her eyes eventually landed on the small stone grave her Uncle Harry had made for a house elf that died before she was even born. The grave had always been something of an enigma to Victoire until one day her Uncle Harry explained it to her himself. The gravesite was another spot in the yard Victoire was always very mindful of, along with her mother’s flowerbeds. “How ‘bout over there?” she asked and pointed to the grave. “Uncle Harry buried a house elf there once, if we burry Spot next to him he’ll have some company!” she said. “Can house elves visit rabbits in rabbit heaven?” Victoire asked.
“Sure they can,” Teddy said.
“Then maybe the house elf’ll come and play with Spot too! He can play with Spot in my place,” Victoire said.
Teddy smiled “Yeah,” he agreed.
“Hang on, take Spot over there, I’ll be right back!” Victoire said and handed Spot over to Teddy and then ran over to the other end of the yard stopping once she reached an old wooden shed. From the outside, the shed didn’t look like much. The paint was chipping all over the place and it looked very sea beaten in general. Not to mention, the thing didn’t look very spacious or sturdy, it gave the appearance of being altogether rather useless. However, once Victoire threw the doors open the shed revealed itself to be vastly more spacious inside. In fact, on the inside the shed was nearly as big as one’s sitting room might be and was packed with odds and ends. If anyone ever wondered how the Weasleys kept their house so clutter free they could find their answer easily enough in this shed. Victoire squeezed past Christmas decorations, old racing brooms and Quidditch supplies, dodged various unwanted Christmas and birthday presents, most of which had been given to Victoire’s parents by none other than Victoire’s old Great-Great Aunt Muriel, until finally she found what she was looking for. Victoire grabbed a small shovel that was leaning idly against the wall and pulled it back out through all the other junk.
By the time Victoire made her way back to Teddy, he had already made Spot his very own rock gravestone like the one Dobby the house elf had. When Victoire peered over Teddy’s shoulder to read what he had written, she saw he had made the epitaph like the one Uncle Harry had made for Dobby. It read “Here lies Spot, a happy rabbit”. Victoire smiled from ear to ear, a happy rabbit, she thought. Victoire liked that, it made her feel a little better to think of Spot happily hopping around in endless green fields with other rabbits, and having Dobby to come visit him and play with him like she would. The thought was an enormous comfort to her, and she was in love with Teddy right now for having given it to her. “I like it, what’d ya use to write on it?” she asked.
“Permanent marker, it’s a muggle thing. A quill wouldn’t work on this stone,” he explained. “Maybe you can ask your dad to use magic on it later so it’ll stay better.”
Victoire nodded “Kay,” she said. “I got a shovel to make the hole, we can take turns digging,” she said. For a good solid fifteen minutes, Teddy and Victoire dug at that hole. Bearing in mind that Teddy and Victoire were just small children, one even considerably smaller than the other, and that Victoire was wearing a dress and Teddy robes immensely too big for him, digging even a relatively small hole was no simple task, never mind digging a hole that would be suitable as a final resting place for a beloved pet. Once the hole was pretty deep, Victoire said “I think that’s good,” from her spot on the ground. It had been Teddy’s turn to dig. Somewhat gladly, Teddy placed the shovel back on the ground.
“You should put Spot in,” Teddy told Victoire.
Victoire nodded slowly. She picked up the shoebox that was resting under a nearby tree away from the digging and dirt so that it would not get messy. It was silly, maybe, to take such precautions to keep Spot’s shoebox clean from dirt when it was ultimately going to be buried in dirt, but Victoire thought it was only respectful to be mindful of Spot’s shoebox. Victoire bent down on her knees and leaned in to set the shoebox gingerly at the bottom of the grave. Victoire stared at the shoebox bellow her for a moment in quiet mournfulness before bursting out in to fresh sobs. Teddy knelt down beside her.
“It’s ok,” he assured her and wrapped his arm around her quivering shoulders. Teddy let Victoire get all her tears out until she eventually stopped, inhaling three times sharply and shakily. “Do you want to say something? ‘Bout Spot?” he asked her lightly.
“Yeah,” Victoire sniffed. “Spot, you were the best pet I could ever ask for. You were such a good rabbit, always eating your carrots and you never once bit me. We had lots of fun together, and I’m re…re…really going to miss you,” Victoire said, her voice cracking slightly towards the end. Teddy was afraid she was going to start crying again, but she didn’t. The two friends were silent for a moment, the only sound that could be heard was that of the waves crashing against the shore and some birds chirping off in the distance, it was the perfect spring’s day, but under the grave circumstance it was hard to truly appreciate it.
“Ready to burry him?” Teddy asked.
“Can…can you do it?” Victoire asked. “I don’t think I can,”
“Sure,” Teddy said and stood up, picking up the shovel with him. Victoire stood up as well and turned away from Teddy and Spot to look out at the sea. She didn’t want to watch Spot be buried, it was too sad. Once Teddy finished, he tapped Victoire on the shoulder. “All done,” he told her. Victoire turned around and looked over at the grave. The dirt in front of the stone was grassless and fresh. She read over the stone again “Here lies Spot, a happy rabbit” and looked at it besides Dobby’s. At least he was happy, at least he had friends somewhere, Victoire thought and turned back to Teddy.
“Thanks Teddy, you’re the best best friend ever,” she told him and then hugged him tightly before pulling back. “Let’s go back inside, we can get changed again and I’ll ask my grandma if she’ll make us lunch,” Victoire said.
Teddy nodded “Ok,” he said.
“I’ll race you there,” Victoire smiled.
Teddy grinned “Ok, on the count of three,” he said.
“One,” Victoire began.
“Two,” Teddy continued.
“THREE!” they finished together, both darting off towards the side door of Victoire’s house. Victoire’s black dress billowed out bellow her as she ran and her father’s black robes dragged behind Teddy. It wasn’t long before Teddy tripped over a combination of his own feet and the oversized robes; he had always been something of a clumsy boy. Victoire let out a howling laugh and grabbed at her stomach as tears of a different kind brimmed the corner of her eyes. Once she composed herself, Victoire grabbed Teddy’s hand and helped him up. Hand in hand, Teddy and Victoire made their way back to the house together, Victoire still letting out spontaneous bursts of giggles as she remembered the sight of her best friend falling flat on his face, mid-run.