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APPLES (PG) BY IAMSHADOW - The Thing You'll Miss The Most
More than friends, closer than brothers....
Title: Apples
Author: iamshadow, pictures created for the story by kath_ballantyne
Ship: Ron/Harry
Word Count: 3,102 words + 2 pictures + author's afterword
Rating: I'll say PG, but it may warrant a slightly higher rating. If it does, let me know and I'll change this.
Warnings: Boy kissage. Nudity. Allusions to masturbation and boysex. Arthur, George, Ron and Harry handling wood. Grumpy Harry.
Summary: Ron loves his home and autumn for many reasons.
A/N: A companion piece to Tea, but from Ron's POV.

This story placed at bestmatesawards 2007!

Apples was also nominated for "Becoming Ron". This category was won by kerryblaze with her marvellous epic The Darkest Recesses of the Heart, which I recommend you all go and read right now.

The Teapot 'verse Series
Prequel Series HERE

Future Fics HERE

Teapot Cookie Fics HERE

I have to say I love autumn best of all the times of year.

Though summer is the holidays, I can’t say it’s my favourite. The air is warm and sticky and the bright Southern sun leaves me irritable and my pale skin pink. And when the heat gets very bad, I just end up lying in a boneless heap anywhere with the hint of a breeze, too lethargic to move.

At least at my own house, I’m free to lounge unless Mum unexpectedly Floos over to “see how we’re getting on”. I love her and all, but she drives me mental sometimes. We’ve lived here for over six months now and we haven’t blown ourselves up yet.

Well, except for that one time, but that was not my fault and we swore solemnly never to tell her about it. She’d just be impossible about it.

Spring is nice enough too, with all the bees and birds and flowers and things. It smells really good in spring; green somehow. I said that once to Hermione and she said it was all the Cawllyfills or something. I didn’t know what they were, but I wasn’t going to tell her that. I just made some sort of “hmmm” noise like it made sense. I wanted to know though, so I asked Luna when she visited one day and she said they were like tiny badgers with wings that eat potato peelings. Apparently spring is their breeding season.

But I like it best when summer’s over and it starts to get that real chill once the sun goes down. The leaves all turn from green to reds and oranges and yellows and purples. I love crunching my boots right through a big drift of them. There’s something very satisfying about it.

Autumn means scarves and hats and jumpers; thick knitted creations (NOT maroon, even if Harry says it suits me) like warm hugs made of wool. It means the fireplace bright at night and long, relaxed evenings in the sitting room with Harry, the Wireless murmuring gently in the corner. I lie on the rug, toasting myself, and watch the flickering light sketching shadows and highlights on his angular face. He’s normally leaning over a letter or some paperwork he didn’t get finished that day.

I leave him alone while he’s working. Though he’s more comfortable now than he used to be with cuddles and kisses and other random physical contact, he still needs that bit of personal space to focus and ground himself. If I was sitting next to him, draped across him like a blanket, he wouldn’t be able to concentrate at all. His whole body goes tense like it’s trying its hardest to ignore the places where I’m touching him. I can’t say that doesn’t hurt, but I know he doesn’t do it on purpose.

So now the only times I do it are the times when I’m trying to distract him.

“Gotta finish…deadline…” he mumbles against my mouth.

“Mmmhmmm…” I agree, my fingers sliding under his shirt and across his belly. “Don’t let me stop you.”

Normally this is the point where the ink gets spilt, Harry’s all important papers get crushed and those nimble fingers of his undress me very quickly. I love the rug in front of the fireplace. It’s a full sheepskin and very comfortable to lie on, especially in the buff as the wool tickles all kinds of places. It’s just as well our Floo point is in the kitchen. That little fact has definitely saved us from a couple of very embarrassing moments. There are certain things your extended family just doesn’t need to know.

In fact, I think the only person that’s ever walked in on us was Hermione. We weren’t actually doing anything yet, but we were certainly getting warmed up to it. Oh, and we were naked. Very, very naked.

“Oh, please,” she said condescendingly, as I tried to wrap myself in the curtains and Harry endeavoured to conceal his vital parts with a cushion. “It’s not like either of you have anything I haven’t seen before.”

I could feel the heat radiating from my face as I blushed as no man had ever blushed before. Then a sliver of thought crept into my brain with an almost audible click, and I turned on Harry with a sudden surge of rage. “When did Hermione see you naked?” I demanded.

Harry’s mouth opened and shut like a stranded fish, and a noise like “gahhh” escaped from his lips, which I took immediately as an admission of some terrible sin.

“For heaven’s sake, Ronald,” Hermione intervened. “We spent most of the year we were seventeen sharing a tent. Seeing you both nude was hardly the worst of it. The sounds from your bunk most nights…”

My brain shut down completely and I wanted to die. Maybe I had already died. I was too mortified to tell.

Harry sniggered, which was a brave thing for a man wearing nothing but a cushion to do. “What about the sounds from your bunk?” he countered.

It was Hermione’s turn to gape. She paled and left the room as quickly as she had entered it, muttering something about letting us get dressed in private.

We were blessedly alone again, and my enquiring mind needed to know. “When did you hear Hermione…you know?”

“Didn’t,” Harry said, grinning cheekily, as he hitched up his pants and buttoned the fly. “But she must have. We were in that tent for months.”

I licked my lips and tried to quell the sudden resurge of desire. “You’re evil. Merlin, I love you. I’m going to shag you so hard when she leaves.”

His green eyes flashed. “Promise?”

“Oh, yeah. Your arse is mine.”

Fireplaces and rugs aside, autumn is my favourite time for another very special reason. Apples. Devon apples are the best in the world. And apples grown on your own trees are better than anything you could ever buy.

When Harry and I decided to move out of the Burrow and find our own place, we could have moved just about anywhere. Harry had plenty of money from his parents’ and Sirius’s estates and a Junior Auror pulled a decent wage into the bargain. George’s shop was making enough that I way getting a good pay packet myself. We could afford to rent somewhere nice, and I said as much.

“No,” Harry said firmly. “No rentals. I want a home. Somewhere that’s ours. Somewhere we can live as long as we want to.”

Godric’s Hollow was raised and almost immediately dismissed.

“I can’t,” he explained. “They have a bloody statue to my family, for God’s sake. I can’t walk past that every day. I want somewhere that’s mine, where I’m not the local curiosity. I’ve had enough of that.”

We’d been to Godric’s Hollow the previous year with a couple of Harry’s senior colleagues in tow to lower the wards temporarily. Most of the contents of the house were damaged, destroyed or had been removed by the Aurors after his parents had been killed. Harry had wandered the rooms that were still structurally sound as if trying desperately to find something but not knowing what he was searching for. He looked grim, pale, and somehow very young and dreadfully old all at once. It was unbearable.

In the end, Harry took just two things from the ruin of the Potter house; a tarnished locket with a broken chain and the charred but still recognisable handle of a broomstick.

“I’m done,” he had said hollowly. The locket and the broom handle he put into a box which he tucked away at the back of the wardrobe. I never saw him touch it but I suspected he opened it when he was alone, the way he did the photo album Hagrid had given him when he was eleven.

We looked all over Britain; magical towns and Muggle, cities and villages. In the end, we settled on a place only a few miles from the Burrow. It was small but had that certain something about it that Harry had been looking for.

“Good choice,” said Bill appreciatively when he and Fleur came to look it over not long after the sale. “It’s been a wizarding home for a long time, so the magic is stable. And no undesirable pests, not even a ghoul in the attic.”

“Thank bloody hell for that,” I exclaimed emphatically. As grateful as I was to the Burrow’s ghoul for taking my place temporarily years ago, I would be glad to be rid of him.

“Of course, you might need to put up some extra security, all things considered. I’d be happy to help out. Just owl me and let me know when you’re about to move in.”

Though Harry might have fallen in love with the house itself or the remoteness or something, what won me over was the apple trees. The Burrow had always had an orchard and living somewhere where I couldn’t just wander out into the autumn chill and pick a Quarrenden or a Pippin straight from the tree just didn’t seem right.

Autumn days revolved around apples when I was little. I was a nimble climber and I’d be sent to the higher parts of the trees that the others couldn’t reach to pick the best and sweetest fruit for Mum. She was always there; her apron ready to unerringly catch the apples I picked and dropped down, her wand ready to catch me if I fell.

Apples from the Burrow’s trees would be turned into a delicious array of goods. Pies with thick crumbly pastry glittering with sugar, moist cakes spiced with cinnamon and served with thick, heavy yellow cream, sticky-sweet apple dappy, preserves swimming in carefully labelled jars, freshly made cloudy juice, smoothly pureed sauces, and sharp orange scrumpy brewed from the “cider tree” and crab apple windfalls collected by Ginny.

When I saw the cottage’s apple trees, I knew we’d found our home. They were old, but just old enough to be well established and not too ancient to yield a crop.

“Hmmm,” Mum said, scrutinising the trees as intently as she had the dusty floorboards and mantelpiece inside the house. “These haven’t been looked after in a while. Little wonder, with the house being empty so long. You’ll need to prune them. Here, and here, see? Like that, every tree. They should fruit well for you, if you do.” She patted the nearest trunk affectionately. “I’ll have to give you some of my recipes.”

I was stunned. “But…but you never give people your recipes! You’re not…you aren’t…” I trailed off into a worried silence.

She laughed loudly and merrily, recognising my distress and smothering it with a hug. “No! I’m fine. Fit as a fiddle. But you’re out on your own now and you’ll be cooking for yourself at least some of the time. And you should learn to do the apples these trees will give you some justice.”

“Cook? But I can’t…I don’t know…” A sense of panic swelled. All these months thinking about moving out, I’d never for one moment considered that living away from home would mean I’d have to cook for myself.

“You’ll learn,” Mum repeated, smiling warmly. “You’re my son; it’s in your blood. There’s a cook in there somewhere. And if there isn’t, you’ll learn out of bare necessity.” Her face grew suddenly stern. “If I find out you’re letting Harry make all the meals and do all the housework, you’ll hear about it from me. After those awful Muggle relatives of his treating him they way they did, I won’t stand for it. Understand?”

“Yes, mum.”

“Good boy.” The smile returned and she gave me another gentle squeeze.

Life at the new cottage settled into a gentle kind of rhythm. Weekdays we went off to our respective jobs. I Flooed to Wheezes, but Harry firmly insisted on Apparating to work. He’d never liked the Floo and he complained that the soot it left on his Auror robes looked unprofessional. Truth be told, I think he would have preferred flying to Apparition any day if it didn’t mean he’d have to leave before sunrise to get there in time.

Harry made me tea every morning as he was the early riser. Most days he’d bring it in while I was still curled up in my duvet, but sometimes I woke early and would watch him from the kitchen doorway as he performed each step methodically, those slender, strong hands precise in every movement. For someone who couldn’t dance, there was something so elegant and graceful about him when he made a cup of tea.

I actually grew into a decent enough cook and ended up making dinner most nights, as Harry’s hours could be long and unpredictable. Mum, Ginny and Harry had (rather frighteningly) combined forces to give me a crash course on the basics not long before we moved in. The result was a bizarre hodgepodge of magical and Muggle techniques, but the meals I made were edible more often than not. The day I cooked Mum’s rosemary potatoes to perfection I was so chuffed I couldn’t stop grinning. Maybe it was in my blood after all.

Mum was right about the trees. Not long after we moved in, George and Dad came around and helped Harry and I prune the half a dozen or so that made our little orchard. It was hard work, but satisfying. The lopped branches were cut into neat cords and stacked to cure for firewood.

“Burns sweet, apple does,” Dad said happily, wiping his flushed face with a dirty hand.

Though there was a lull of domesticity developing, I was anxiously waiting over the months that followed for autumn. The grass under the apple trees grew long and sprinkled with wildflowers. Delicate buds grew on the branches and burst open, hundreds of bees humming over each tree. Then the flowers faded, dropping their petals like confetti. The grass yellowed in the heat, turning to hay under the summer sun. And ever so slowly, the tiny nubs that would be apples swelled and grew.

At last, one morning towards the end of October I woke in the dim predawn, instantly alert. Harry was fast asleep, his breathing deep and even, all his premature worry-lines smoothed as if by gentle fingers moulding clay. I slipped silently from the sheets, carefully tucking them down again. My questing feet found slippers as I shrugged on my dressing gown quickly. I knew it was time.

The long grass in the orchard was heavy with dew that quickly soaked my pyjama bottoms and made me shiver. But it didn’t matter. I was on a quest. And there, there it was. A ripe, red sphere, shining in the mist. I wrapped my fingers around it and it came away in my hand at the slightest tug.

The first bite was wonderfully crisp. My teeth punctured the firm skin releasing the juices in a rush. The apple was sweet and tart and refreshing and everything I’d imagined it could be. It was everything that embodied An Apple. All the pies and cider in the world couldn’t match the purity and completeness of that first apple of the season.

I paced out from the trunk into an open area of grass. There I dug a little hole and buried the core, patting the dirt down carefully. I had an odd impulse to thank the tree, but even on my own at the crack of dawn in the middle of an orchard in my pyjamas saying thank you to a tree was a bit too weird for me. Instead I hunted out a second just as perfect specimen and went back inside.

Harry was still asleep. I slipped off my wet trousers and climbed back under the covers, snuggling up and wrapping my arms around him. He woke up enough to yelp and make a half-hearted attempt to wriggle free. "You're freezing," he complained. "Where did you go?"

"Outside," I said brightly.

He made a very grouchy noise and his face creased up cranky folds. "It's a Saturday. It's dawn. Your feet are cold. I think I hate you. A lot."

"I brought you tea," I said cajolingly, accompanied by my most winning smile. I knew he couldn't stay angry with me for long when I smiled like that.

One dark green eye cracked open. "If that's a lie, I'm going to go out and find the most obscenely handsome boy in London and shag him relentlessly. And I won't even let you watch."

Feigning hurt I pouted, knowing that he couldn't withstand me pouting, but I sat up and picked up the mug from the nightstand anyway. I gently wafted the steaming brew under his nose.

"Fine," he conceded marginally, "you can watch." He struggled up to a half-sitting position and took the mug. Despite his ill temper, a fleeting pleasure stole across his features at that first mouthful. I loved that expression. I couldn't help but lean in carefully and kiss him once he had swallowed.

"I love you," I breathed, tasting tea on my own lips.

"I still hate you," he grumbled, but his heart wasn't in it. I could tell.

"I know."

"You taste like apples," he said sulkily. He took another mouthful of the tea, nursing the mug defensively, as though it might be taken from him at any moment.

"I brought you a present," I said, brimming with excitement, dropping the pristine fruit into his lap.

"It's an apple."

"Yes!" I exclaimed triumphantly.

"I have eaten apples before. Admittedly, not usually this early in the morning or borne by insane redheads with icy toes."

"Pah," I said dismissively. "This is an Apple. One of our apples."

His temper was dissolving; I could see it. The frown was almost gone. Almost.

Harry sighed heavily. "If I eat this, will you leave me alone?" he asked petulantly.

"Maybe," I teased. "If that's what you want me to do." I was looking at him from under my lashes and smiling in what I hoped was a flirtatious manner. The hand that had dropped the apple in his lap had wandered under the duvet a while ago and was gently stroking his chest through the fabric of his t-shirt. If the slight flush on his cheeks was anything to go by, he wasn't unmoved.

Harry swallowed rather hard. "Fine."

I watched intently as he picked up the apple and opened his mouth for that first, exquisite bite.

Author's Afterword
I tried to choose older varieties of apples for Ron and the Burrow’s orchard, specifically varieties grown in Devon. The two apples mentioned by name would be the Devonshire Quarrenden and probably Cox’s Orange Pippin. One of the things that attracted me to the Quarrenden apart from its long history is that the flesh of its apples can be pink through to red if the summer is warm enough. The “cider tree” mentioned would most likely be Brown’s Apple, an early Devon variety used in cider production, which can also display red flesh. Despite the fruit being inedible uncooked, crab apples have more value than just as preserves. They add a unique element to cider and they play a vital role in the orchard as pollinators to other trees.

Any misinformation about Devon or apples in this afterword or the story itself is totally my fault. I know less about them than I do about tea. I
did try to do my homework, but even Google and Wikipedia have their limits.

There is more information on red-fleshed apples at http://web.ukonline.co.uk/suttonelms/apple52.html

<- Tea c@r A Cautionary Tale ->

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45 comments or Leave a comment
tailoredshirt From: tailoredshirt Date: October 17th, 2007 06:41 am (UTC) (Link)

That was just so, so lovely. Honestly, I didn't think it could top its companion piece, but I think it has. Once again, I loved the flow of the piece and how you incorporated all of the people that Ron loves. The part about his mom warning him against making Harry cook was slightly heartbreaking, and I could just see Arthur Weasley reach up to wipe that smudge of dirt off his face. I could list a dozen little details that I loved, but we'd both be here all day so I won't. :) But I did love that last scene, with Ron's cold feet and their mouths tasting like tea and apples and basically just everything.

I'm going to recommend this story and its companion piece, if you don't mind. Wonderful work. :)
iamshadow From: iamshadow Date: October 17th, 2007 07:51 am (UTC) (Link)
I felt that this piece had a lot more detail in it than the first. A real motivation was to showcase the house.

I really felt bringing Molly to life was important. So many writers portray her as some kind of harridan or shrew. I think she does blow up, she does nag, but her kids and Harry genuinely love her. I think there is a polarity of behaviour in her you get in many parents. She's eager for her kids to grow and settle, but just as eager to keep them safe and sheltered and small. I really love the scene in the orchard because it's subtly showing that dynamic between Ron and Molly. They're talking as adults about the trees, then she's reassuring him, then she's reinforcing the expectations she has of him in his new life, all within the space of a few moments.

Another thing I wanted to show it though Harry and Ron are domesticated, they're not an 'old married couple'. They still have very eager sexual appetites and drives. This is their first time living in their own place away from the Burrow and they'd be relishing that freedom. So having sex in areas like the sitting room would be wonderfully naughty and exotic. I wouldn't be surprised if Ron wanders round the house wearing practically nothing in the warmer weather, too. :)

Thank you for reccing my work! I'm glad you like it. :)
wordsweweave From: wordsweweave Date: October 17th, 2007 06:52 am (UTC) (Link)
Autumn is my favorite time of the year. Ron and Harry are my favorite boys. What a wonderful combination! A perfect change of season fic.!

I'm going to curl up in a blanket and sit by a fire with a hot cup of apple cider now! Domestic bless!
iamshadow From: iamshadow Date: October 17th, 2007 07:53 am (UTC) (Link)

I love autumn too. Shame it's getting on for summer down here. I hate the heat. :(
oncelikeshari From: oncelikeshari Date: October 17th, 2007 10:31 am (UTC) (Link)
Heavy yellow cream? Were you looking for the word custard? *lol*

That was really well written *applauds you*
iamshadow From: iamshadow Date: October 17th, 2007 11:18 am (UTC) (Link)
LOL! No, clotted cream like this. But serving suggestions for Apple Dappy and Devonshire Apple Cake do say to use custard if the cake is warm. :)

Thank you. :)
mrsquizzical From: mrsquizzical Date: October 17th, 2007 11:17 am (UTC) (Link)
i adore the pace of this, the domesticity of it (guh) and the broken harry and ron is completely adorable.

you write a molly i can recognise, and the feeling between them is glorious.

i think i just might love you.
iamshadow From: iamshadow Date: October 17th, 2007 11:23 am (UTC) (Link)
As lovely as Ron is, I think it's quite astute of Molly to recognise that he needs a little reminder now and then that Harry's had a rough time of it. But that being said, I think everyone after the war is a little broken. I tried to show that with George in Tea.

*blushes* Thank you!
thewatch From: thewatch Date: October 17th, 2007 11:17 am (UTC) (Link)
I love this story. The home you've conjured is a perfect thing, just the kind of place I would love to live in. I'm an autumn person myself so I completely relate.

I love stories that have that wonderful peacefullness of a home filled with love and all those little domestic moments that tie you to a place and a person. I love the pictures and I love the apples.

I've recently come to appreciate the long and varied history of apples and Devon itself is a place I've been and enjoyed. Beautifully written and filled with all that warm feeling of the best apple pies and custard and cream.
iamshadow From: iamshadow Date: October 17th, 2007 11:56 am (UTC) (Link)
I wouldn't mind living there myself!

Mad Martha turned me on to domestic fic.

Glad you like the pictures! My partner worked on them most of last night. They're composites of about half a dozen pictures, Photoshopped a lot, and the house itself was modified a great deal from the original photo to match a floor plan I drew.

That's the back door you can see. The sitting room window is on the right and the kitchen on the left. Upstairs you can see Harry and Ron's bedroom window on the right and the window set into the roof is the spare bedroom. The orchard is to the left of the house, and the pond is further down, behind where the picture taker would be standing. I might put the floor plans up later, once I draw them up neatly.

Well, that makes one of us who's been to Devon and eaten Devon apples!
thewatch From: thewatch Date: October 17th, 2007 08:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
The floor plans of the house sound lovely, I love being able to match the rooms to the windows. Congrats to your partner for the lovely work on the pictures and photoshopping magic.

I'm also a Mad Martha fan which hooked me onto the domestic fic too.
aniwde From: aniwde Date: October 17th, 2007 11:53 am (UTC) (Link)
This has the same, gentle pace as Tea, and it is perfect for the subject matter. Their little cottage sounds wonderful - I'm so jealous!

There were so many wonderful bits in this. But what really sticks with me is Ron's voice. This story is like sitting over a cup of tea while listening to Ron reminisce, you know? The story of how they got the house. The funny little anecdote about Hermione. The insight into Harry's personal space issues. And his family's acceptance of them living together - everything Molly's done, Bill doing the warding, Arthur helping with the pruning. All supportive actions of a loving family.

And I love the orchard, and all the interesting facts about the apples. I remember my mum making crab apple jelly when I was little - I used to love it! This is just wonderful. Bravo.
iamshadow From: iamshadow Date: October 17th, 2007 12:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
Glad you liked Ron's voice. It was something I really worked on. I didn't want him to use the same sentence structure and words as Harry did in Tea. If I didn't pay attention I found myself being too complex or flowery, and that really doesn't suit Ron. He's a straightforward kinda guy. Though this is a "musing" story, that doesn't mean he's going to wax poetic about things. That's why I had that little moment in the orchard where he thinks about thanking the tree, then shakes himself out of it.

Loved writing the Hermione scene. Every now and then she needs a gentle (or not so gentle) smackdown. I loved that Harry thought quickly and "rescued" his boy from total humiliation.

Harry having personal space issues is something I think is very realistic. If for the whole of your childhood that you can remember the only hands that have touched you have been rough or violent, the only voices cruel, being touched isn't going to be something you associate with comfort, no matter how much you love a person. You'll react instinctively with fear, panic and guilt. Touch would be something you'd have to learn to relax about, consciously. Though Ron is accepting of it now, I don't think he always understood it. The Weasleys are very "hands on" in their affections.

And yes, I like the idea of the Weasleys being accepting. Timeline-wise, I picture Harry and Ron being around twenty or so, and having been together for a couple of years before moving out on their own. They've been living at the Burrow, openly as a couple, for quite a while. I don't know whether I'll end up writing prequels dealing with their coming out or falling in love. Maybe. :)
ms_worplesdon From: ms_worplesdon Date: October 17th, 2007 07:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh please do write a prequel. You have such a relaxed writing style, and I would love to see how you'd tell that story.
starryskies From: starryskies Date: October 17th, 2007 02:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
This was so British. I loved it.

I also loved the "shagging relentlessly." Def the best kind of shagging, imo
iamshadow From: iamshadow Date: October 17th, 2007 02:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yay! I'm glad you think so. I'm Australian, though my Grandparents were all British migrants here after WWII.

Yes! Harry's hypothetical romp with his London-based Adonis. I rather think Ron would deserve this cruel and unusual punishment. As anyone who has been woken unnecessarily half an hour early o a weekend and is then unable to get back to sleep would agree. ;)
shes_gone From: shes_gone Date: October 17th, 2007 03:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
So lovely.

If I wasn't in love with Ron already, I'd fall in love with him just for this fic. *sigh*

I love the flow of it, and the easy bits of humour you slip in. Very, very nice!
iamshadow From: iamshadow Date: October 17th, 2007 04:31 pm (UTC) (Link)
No one can resist Ron! He's like the good chocolate.

Ah, the flow is a reflection on the workings of my brain. I have Asperger's syndrome and one of the ways it makes me a little different from the general population is that I think in a very tangential way. One thing flows into another into another, like living a 'stream of consciousness' exercise.

Good for writing fic, not so good when I was in high school (undiagnosed) under pressure trying to write essays in my exams. Could NOT stay on topic for the life of me.

And there has to be humour. So much of what I write is bitter sweet. And life is like that; you do get the moments of comedy in tragedy. These two pieces have been more sweet than bitter but both have had shadows in them of the past because "happily ever after" doesn't exist, no matter what that damn epilogue says. The past always effects the present. Harry's childhood won't be erased by love and a house and a few years, and George won't ever look over his shoulder without a pang that Fred's not there. It's just the way people are. We feel, we grieve, we emotionally connect to events that happened long ago with a sharpness and clarity that logically makes no sense. It's part of what makes us human.
shes_gone From: shes_gone Date: October 17th, 2007 07:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
No one can resist Ron! He's like the good chocolate.
Truer words were never spoken. Er, typed. Whatever.

Ah, the flow is a reflection on the workings of my brain.
Well, it is simply lovely! I don’t know a lot about Asperger’s, but I had a friend in high school who had it, so I know a bit about the struggles to perform in that kind of environment. She had been diagnosed and our school was quite cooperative, at least. She was my partner for Grade 11 Creative Writing, which was focused on peer-editing and feedback, and I’m not sure I’ve ever had such a lovely academic experience. So I’ve seen how it can lend itself to fantastic creativity.

And of course there’s no such thing as ‘happily ever after’ – that’s why they call them ‘fairy tales’. Otherwise they’d just be ‘stories’. ;)
shocolate From: shocolate Date: October 17th, 2007 04:08 pm (UTC) (Link)
OMG, where have you been all my fandom life???

This was so simple and happy and lovely.

Who knew I had a domestic!kink? *looks round at mess*

I printed it out to read on the train, this morning, or I'd have pasted and swooned over almost every line, but...

“Burns sweet, apple does,” Dad said happily, wiping his flushed face with a dirty hand.

Such Arthur!Love!

One dark green eye cracked open. "If that's a lie, I'm going to go out and find the most obscenely handsome boy in London and shag him relentlessly. And I won't even let you watch."

Your grumpy!Harry is to die for.

"I brought you a present," I said, brimming with excitement

Your happy!Ron makes me very happy.

And you know what?

I hate apples - cannot bite into them without my teeth shriveling up and crumbling away.

iamshadow From: iamshadow Date: October 17th, 2007 04:56 pm (UTC) (Link)
OMG, where have you been all my fandom life???

Not writing for a long long time. And never Harry Potter until a couple of weeks ago.

If you want to brave the OMGTEENANGST, you could go and look at my very frigging old website that I haven't touched in many years. The fanfic I used to write was Doug Anthony Allstars (comedy group late '80s to early '90s). Most sane people probably haven't heard of them, but they did spend some time in the UK and did a bunch of Edinburgh Fringe Festivals. Some angsty/drama stuff on there, and one long crack fic that threw them all into Little Red Riding Hood. If you don't know the Dougs though, it's probably not going to make sense.

Who knew I had a domestic!kink? *looks round at mess*

*looks at own trash heap* *shrugs*

I printed it out to read on the train, this morning, or I'd have pasted and swooned over almost every line, but...

You printed my fic out to read? That's probably one of the best compliments anyone's ever given me. *hugs you*

Such Arthur!Love!

I have a big soft spot for Arthur.

Your grumpy!Harry is to die for.

Ron deserves it!

Your happy!Ron makes me very happy.

Me too! He's like a big puppy. I think the fact that I've been reading puppyfic lately (namely shoebox) added to his exuberance. I love Shoebox!Sirius.

And you know what?

I hate apples - cannot bite into them without my teeth shriveling up and crumbling away.


You hate them? Or you find them difficult to eat? I eat mine with a knife - I cut off a thin slice at a time and eat them that way so I don't shred my gums.

Glad you liked the fic anyway, even if you don't like apples! LOL!
shocolate From: shocolate Date: October 17th, 2007 05:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
I can't even read fic in a fandom I do know, excpept for HP, so I think I'll pass on being completely baffled!

You printed my fic out to read?

Well, I didn't have time to read it at home, and I had to take my kids to school, so I quickly printed it and whisked them off on the train.

I can eat apples if my teeth don't have to touch the skin.... which is rarely worth the bother. Except for when I had a crush on a bloke at work and always took an apple from the canteen at lunch so I could ask him to take the first bite for me.... pointless, 'cos I knew he was gay.
iamshadow From: iamshadow Date: October 17th, 2007 05:40 pm (UTC) (Link)
Probably just as well. I had a bit of a look; some of the stuff is okay - pretty standard fare. Some is actually pretty good. And there's a whole bunch of things I'd completely forgotten existed. Oh, and there's some really angsty razor-against-my-wrist poetry. These emo kids think they invented it, but grunge kids knew how to angst with the best of them.

Printing it means you didn't want to wait until you got home to read it, which is extremely flattering. I'm more than ever glad that Apples didn't turn out shite. Otherwise you would have wasted paper. :)

The skin is why I eat mine in slices. I could just peel them I suppose, but I like the flavour of the skin. It doesn't injure me if I can chew it with my molars rather than biting through it with my incisors.
hedwigs_bane From: hedwigs_bane Date: October 17th, 2007 05:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
Now that was just full of appley goodness.

Isn't Harry a crab in the morning, thoug! LOL
iamshadow From: iamshadow Date: October 17th, 2007 06:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
I have to admit, Morning!Harry is more than a little bit based on myself. I am *not* a happy girl first thing, especially before about 10am. I believe the expression "bear with a sore head" sums it up pretty well.

However, I will mellow slightly if brought caffeinated beverages either before or just after I get up. :)
hedwigs_bane From: hedwigs_bane Date: October 18th, 2007 02:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
Actually, my mother uses the same expression, only it's the other end of the bear that's sore...
ms_worplesdon From: ms_worplesdon Date: October 17th, 2007 06:57 pm (UTC) (Link)
I can't stop grinning, seriously. I think I even teared up a little. I don't know where to begin. First off, the descriptions of autumn goodness went straight to my spine. Their little cottage... you know you actually made me proud of my own cottage for a minute? Mine is a hellhole. The little pictures were hits of sweetness, and really did add another layer. Something about the light being on in one room, I think. The apples... I've been practically living at the orchard this month, and was suffering apple fatigue. You've cured it. Thank you, because there is so much more autumn to go!

Your story actually makes me want to trespass. My land sits next to an old haunted colonial manor house and their orchard cultivated the Albemarle Pippin. I want to sneak into their orchard at dawn to pick a few apples. Maybe just in fantasy. *sigh*

Your banter between them was just right. The firewood, the tea, the apple core, the icy toes. Ron's voice was absolutely that of a boy who had grown up at the Burrow. His sentimentality about the apples was exactly the kind of thing I would expect from his character.

I could keep going on and on about how much I loved this, but I think you get the idea. *hugs you*
kerryblaze From: kerryblaze Date: October 18th, 2007 01:21 am (UTC) (Link)
Another great piece of work! "This is an Apple. One of our apples." *sighs*
redsnake05 From: redsnake05 Date: October 18th, 2007 04:39 am (UTC) (Link)
Despite being only partially domesticated myself, I do love stories which feature domesticated!Ron. There is something so soothing about reading about the boys and the little rituals that ground them. Good work.
hpuckle From: hpuckle Date: October 18th, 2007 01:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
Your imagery is always so beautiful. I loved this, it was the perfect companion piece to "Tea" =]

prydonia From: prydonia Date: October 19th, 2007 03:11 pm (UTC) (Link)
It seems you have a following, my dear! I'm so proud of you. Tea *and* apples! Brilliant!
iamshadow From: iamshadow Date: October 20th, 2007 08:27 am (UTC) (Link)
*cuddles you*
abovethestars From: abovethestars Date: November 22nd, 2007 03:46 am (UTC) (Link)
tea and apples - just beautiful!

domestic fics are SO my kink!

thanks for a wonderful day of reading your fics! *hugs*
shadowfiction From: shadowfiction Date: November 22nd, 2007 04:46 am (UTC) (Link)
I love domestic fic myself! These first two were written as a tribute to mad_martha who is the queen of domestic fic. Her Ron/Harry and Remus/Sirius got me back into writing, and made me drink a ridiculous amount of tea. My coffee machine is languishing in neglact.
From: layabonifacio Date: March 2nd, 2008 05:04 am (UTC) (Link)
The contentment of Ron was almost palpable. It's your way with words, the way you enumerate details, be it about emotions, or facial expressions or even apple trees. The whole time I was reading the fic I felt relaxed. I could feel the contentment myself. :)

And the pictures of the house look real, tweaked in a computer program. Is it real?

Great fic. :)
shadowfiction From: shadowfiction Date: March 2nd, 2008 05:07 am (UTC) (Link)
Thank you!

The house pictures were several photos, layered and altered. The actual house was changed a fair bit from the original picture, to fit with the 'layout' I saw in my mind for it.
shygryf From: shygryf Date: April 20th, 2008 11:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
My favorite Apples are pacific roses, but I am always open to new varieties.
shadowfiction From: shadowfiction Date: April 21st, 2008 10:13 am (UTC) (Link)
My favourite varieties that are available in this part of Australia are Gala and Granny Smith.
shygryf From: shygryf Date: April 22nd, 2008 04:09 am (UTC) (Link)
I like Galas, use them for cooking. granny smiths are a bit too sour for me. at least you didn't say red delicious!
shadowfiction From: shadowfiction Date: April 22nd, 2008 11:57 am (UTC) (Link)
No, I don't like Red Delicious very much at all. Too powdery. Granny Smiths are lovely cooking apples, too, if you don't like them raw. The tartness compliments the sweetness in most dessert dishes wonderfully. Very nice in cakes and pies.
shygryf From: shygryf Date: April 23rd, 2008 04:00 am (UTC) (Link)
i have used Grannies, but most of the time when i am baking qith apples it is apple cake and they just don't work as well. Pacific roses are sweeter than galas and as firm as granny smiths.

Red delicious have horrid texture. and no taste.
magicofisis From: magicofisis Date: April 24th, 2008 04:01 pm (UTC) (Link)
One of the reasons I don't care for domestic fic much is that writers so often make our boys into girls. But yours is beautifully written and believable both in terms of its canon-compliance and boyishness. Gorgeous use of language helps, too. If all H/R writers would write domestic fic like you, we'd all be much better off!

I'm in love with your Harry, btw. I'm just sayin'.
shadowfiction From: shadowfiction Date: April 24th, 2008 06:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
I did really try hard not to make them too girly. I think it probably helps that I'm not a conventional girl.

*is all flattered*

I'm obsessed with using language in interesting and poetic ways. Writing is a kind of music, to me, and too many people out there (all kinds of writers, not just fan-fiction ones) use words in unoriginal, mechanical or clumsy ways. If what I've written doesn't have a nice 'sound' to it, then I rewrite it until it does, or cut it. Clumsy or awkward bits in my own fic stand out to me, glaringly, like sour notes in a performance, and I always try as hard as I can to write as well as I can. The fact that I virtually never use a beta means I have to be pretty rigorous, and it's not unusual for me to go back in after I've posted a fic and make minor changes to it over the following few days.

*is in love with her Harry too*

But then, that's probably narcissism. Though he isn't my favourite character, I identify a lot with canon!Harry. A lot of the non-canon quirks of his that I've written into Teapot I've taken from my own likes/dislikes/experiences.
maevemist From: maevemist Date: August 16th, 2008 01:00 pm (UTC) (Link)

such lovely imagery and it has left me with a warm fuzzy feeling.
shadowfiction From: shadowfiction Date: August 16th, 2008 02:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thank you! This was an attempt at a companion piece for Tea; Ron's side of things, if you like. Both of these stories I consider to be essentially character studies. They helped me work out what made these two tick; what they liked, their general attitudes towards their surroundings, and the way they viewed and interacted with each other. And I wanted to really draw on the domestic element, and make these both like a big, warm hug, or a cup of tea on a cold day.
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