Characters/Pairing: Charlie Weasley, Teddy Lupin, past Charlie/Tonks, Tonks/Lupin
Prompt: Trope meme - accidental baby acquisition -- Charlie and Tonks – for angel_vixen
Word Count: 561
Warnings: Canonical character deaths; EWE; angst
Summary: Charlie answers the door and his entire life changes forever.
Notes: I’m doing this “trope” meme mostly for me, but I wanted to share my little fangirl ones because I thought some of you might enjoy them. Un-betaed.
Charlie opened his door, blinking owlishly as he rubbed sleep out of his eyes. It was early, or at least, it was for someone who had been working over half the night in order to take Floo alls and meetings with the American Dragon Conservation.
“Wha’?” he said. Not at his brightest, but he’d only been asleep – he glanced at the clock – something like three hours. Besides that, trans-Atlantic Floo calls always left him feeling hung over.
“Charlie Weasley?” the portly, well-dressed wizard said somewhat dubiously. Charlie supposed he couldn’t blame the bloke.
“Yes, that’s me. Can I help you?”
“I think it’s more of a matter of if you can help me.” The tone indicated that he didn’t expect much, and it succeeded in thoroughly waking Charlie, if only to make him bristle.
Charlie smiled thinly. “Do come in, then, by all means,” he said, eyeing the man and his bundle-holding associate before stepping back from the door. “Do forgive me,” he added with excessive obsequiousness, his humor somewhat biting, “but I’ve been asleep. Late night at the office.” He closed the door firmly. “Trans-Atlantic Floo call.”
The associate, at least, winced.
“Now if you can tell me who you are and what I can do for you, I’d be much obliged, sirs, so I can get back to bed.”
“Well.” The portly wizard hemmed. It made Charlie’s skin crawl. He’d met Dolores Umbridge a few times. That was enough. “I’m Dagsworth, of Dagsworth, Ziggles, and Stein.” Charlie stiffened upon recognizing the law firm’s name. “I am here to fulfill the last wishes of Nymphadora Tonks-Lupin.”
At that, Charlie paled, freckles standing out starkly on his face, and sat abruptly on the small couch in the equally small living area of this tiny flat he’d rented so he could be near his family. He and Tonks had been sweethearts in school; her marriage to Lupin had hit him hard. Her death had hit him even harder. “Her last wishes,” he repeated numbly.
“Yes.” It was the associate who spoke this time, prompted by a glance from his boss. Coward, Charlie thought of the older of the two. “Ah. You see, she wished for you to take care of her son, should anything happen to her and her husband.” He turned the bundle in his arms, showing Charlie it wasn’t just a bundle but a small boy, all bundled up for the unexpected cool weather they’d been having this early in the fall.
Charlie’s heart stopped and started again as he stared, round-eyed, at the child he’d met only a couple of times. Tonks had wanted him to be the godfather, but Remus’ wishes for Harry had won out. “I… I…” Automatically he took the tiny body offered to him, and little Teddy stirred into wakefulness, his hair turning red to mirror Charlie’s. It was then his heart was utterly lost, and he clutched the child to his chest, the only piece of Tonks he had left.
“We’ll contact you with further details,” the younger man whose name he never caught murmured, squeezing his shoulder as the two men rose and slipped out. “My sympathies to you in your loss.” The door clicked shut.
Charlie just sat there, looking at the child he’d somehow accidentally acquired, who in another world could have his, and marveled, dumbfounded, at the turn of events.
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