Arthur/Molly: the Best Use of Time
Title: the Best Use of Time
Length: 500 words
Time: first rise of Voldemort
"Wait! We can't do this!"
Arthur paused, his hand poised to knock on the door. "You mean you don't want to get married?"
"Don't be silly--of course I do. But--I'm not wearing white! We have to go back!"
"Molly, the only reason I am still in possession of all my bits is that I am an exceptional dodger. If we get within six miles of your family's house they'll stun me and lock you into the cellar--if your father doesn't think of something more colorful. I believe I heard him yell something about thumbscrews-"
"Daddy didn't mean that. He was only surprised. I have to get married in white, Arthur. What will people think?"
"We are eloping, you know. It's not exactly the height of propriety. And anyway, who's going to know?"
"Hullo! Are we too late?" The lovers turned to see Adelaide Fawcett coming up the lane with her husband Samuel. "Being a witness to an elopement under cover of darkness--how romantic. I'm glad you asked us, Arthur. You must stop by quite often, now that we'll both be living in the same neighborhood."
"There! Addy will know!" Molly pointed triumphantly. "So there's no way out--I have to go back and get a white dress--"
The door opened and a short man about ten years older than themselves stood there in his dressing gown, squinting at them. "Excuse me," he said politely. "I hate to interrupt whatever discussion you're having on my front lawn, but my wife and I are trying to sleep. Is there anything I can help you with?"
"Reverend Morris," Arthur Weasley said firmly, putting an arm around Molly's shoulders, "I want to marry this woman."
"Indeed." The short man blinked. "I take it your families are not inclined to let you follow the normal course of betrothal, and so you've come to be married in secret."
"It's only my family, really," Molly said apologetically. "They think I'm too young-"
"They think she can do better than a Weasley with a bottom-rung Ministry job," Arthur said. "But I don't want to waste time trying to prove myself to them when I don't know how much time we have."
"Indeed," Rev. Morris said again. "And you agree, young woman?"
"Oh yes," she answered, her eyes suddenly becoming wet. "After Jane disappeared--and the Smiths up in Barnton--"
"Yes. These are dangerous times. Come inside."
They found Mrs. Morris already lighting candles in the foyer.
"You have a marriage license? I can marry you before God, but the Ministry is harder to please."
Arthur took the scroll from his pocket and handed it over.
"And these will be your witnesses?"
Addy and Samuel nodded.
"We'll skip the flowery parts." He peered at the scroll. "Do you, Arthur William, take Molly Susannah as your wife?"
"And do you, Molly Susannah, take Arthur William as your husband?"
"Then I declare you bonded for life."