Last week, I got your letter. You know what, Hermione? I'm glad that we're corresponding. I'm glad that you owl me, even though you're oceans away.
I'm assuming that the United States are as nice as everyone says they are – I hope I can visit one day, but not right now…things are just too hectic. I hope you understand.
Ron says that you two have rented a flat in New York City. I know that in America, they don't call flats "flats". They call them…oh, dear, someone told me the word, but its slipped right out of my head. Anyway, I'm sure you're happy where you're living, no matter what you call it.
Do the people have accents there? Well, of course they do, I suppose, it's America. Have you gone to see the Statue of Liberty yet? And how is your new job going? I'm sorry, Hermione, but I never really pictured you as British ambassador to wizarding America. British ambassador to wizarding Turkey maybe…
It'd wonderful that little Johnny is doing so well, he had us all scared with that bout of pneumonia earlier this year. I'm glad that he's with his parents. You two can keep an eye on him – that little boy always did take too many risks.
In your last letter, you asked about how I feel about my brothers' protection. Well, Hermione, that set me thinking, which is why it has taken me so long to respond. But I have to thank you for making me consider my feelings on the matter.
You see, I've always had quite mixed feelings about the whole mess. Being the only girl a family of nine, it's pretty much a given that I will be protected. Being the youngest even more. My entire life, I've been looked out for. I've been given advice on everything I do. There is always someone there to order me around.
But there are good sides. I never, for example, have to deal with annoying gits who stalk me (I can't help but laugh here, remembering Draco Malfoy in my sixth year, and how Ron about had his head when he started to follow me around). And believe me, Hermione, there have been a few. Why, just the other day, I was in Diagon Alley at Weasley's Wizard Wheezes, and this man – he must have been about forty(!!) – was flirting with me. He wouldn't leave me alone, and let's just say that Fred and George "took care of him".
I'm getting off topic, aren't I? Oh, I do have a tendency to ramble.
Back to my main point, I've never had any trouble fending off boys. There is the problem, however, that with six older brothers, I've probably never had as many "male companions" as I could have. Or, I'd like to think so, anyway. Perhaps some boys who might have been interested in me realised about Bill, Charlie, Percy, Fred, George, and Ron, and suddenly…they weren't so interested any more.
I can't even be interested in a boy (and have him be interested in me back) without two or more of my older brothers "subtly" mentioning every one of his character flaws to me, and threatening to hurt him. You do remember what my brothers did to Harry, in your fifth year? I don't think he'll ever forget George's left hook.
In that way, my brother's protection of me can be quite annoying. Just once, I'd like to have a relationship where no one from my family interferes at all. Just go far enough away that they won't even be able to do anything.
I suppose I shouldn't live in dreams. My relationship with Harry was, in the beginning, full of familial interference. I think they all accept it now, thank goodness.
Sometimes, my brothers go overboard – in fact, they often go overboard, if not one, then another.
I've given a lot of thought as to why I'm so protected. First of all is the fact that I'm a girl. So, therefore, my oh-so-manly brothers think that as a weak woman, I need protection. Secondly, I'm the youngest, which automatically makes me the most vulnerable person in my family.
Although, I'd like to add, I can be as tough as my brothers can when I want to be.
Everything has its good side, right? You were an only child, Hermione, you don't realise how wonderful it is to be where I am.
My whole life, I have always felt safe. I have always felt that there would be someone there to help me. I've always been sure that if I were trapped in the tallest tower of the castle, a prince would come rescue me – that prince being my brother.
I've never in my life had to worry about protection. My brothers are there in a flash when I'm feeling scared. I've never had to wake up, and feel unbearably alone, because I know that I will always have all of them.
There are so many times when I've been scared – not just scared, terrified. And one of my brothers has always been there. I've always had someone to hold me, and whisper that everything was going to be all right. I've never feared for my safety. I've always known that my brothers will always love me.
There is not quite a word I can say to explain how I feel about my brothers' protection. I love them with all of my heart. I know that they go overboard, but I know that they are trying.
There isn't really any way to explain the feeling I have when one of my brothers is hugging me, and reassuring me. It's unbelievable relief, unending comfort. My brothers mean the world to me. I don't think I would have made it this far without them.
I know that I complain about it, but I love to feel protected. I love to feel reassured. It's a feeling that makes me realise how much they care about me – Hermione, that's why they do it. They care about me. Do you know what an amazing feeling that is? To know that someone cares about you so much that he is willing to go to great lengths to make sure that you are all right?
I love the feeling of being smothered. (And if you tell them this, I promise that I will kill you. Slowly. Painfully.) I love knowing that they'll always be there for me. I love missing them, because they are there to miss. There are so many people in this world, Hermione, that don't have anyone. I am so incredibly lucky to have my brothers, who are probably, along with Harry and my father, the greatest men on this earth.
When my brothers give me warnings, or beat up old boyfriends, or tell me what to do, or freaking shield me with their own bodies from Voldemort, I know that they care, Hermione. I love the feeling of being cared about. I love to know that I matter to someone in this world – that people would cry if I was to die.
I love the fact that somebody loves me.
I love to have someone to go to when I feel scared. I love to have people who make the fear go away. I love it that when I'm in tears, they'll come right away, no questions asked.