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Checkmated Rejects

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How Fitting: We must reject your story, It's Time, at this time [Apr. 16th, 2008|11:23 pm]
Checkmated Rejects


[Current Mood |accomplished]

Title: It's Time
Warnings (if any): DH Spoilers
Summary:Ron has a heart to heart with his brother and makes a surprising decision
Reason given for rejection:We regret to inform you that we must reject your story, It\'s Time, at this
At present, this story...
~ does not meet standard of quality.
Further Details: We think your idea could work, however there are areas that
would need revision - namely Ron\'s talk with Fred, which seemed to have an
overload of information that was strange for the time setting of the fic, and
Hermione\'s insistence (\'Propose to me properly\') which felt out of character.

How did your story fare when you posted it elsewhere? FF.net (18 positive reviews, Favored 13 times), various LJ communities with positive reviews.
Where did you post? FF.net, accio_rhr, My Personal Fanfic Website
Link us to some of your other work:My Personal Fanfic Website, accio_rhr, My FF.net page

I was discouraged to the point where I didn't feel like continuing my HP writing endeavors. It took about 2 1/2 weeks from the time I submitted to the time I received my rejection email. And I was so sure that I'd be accepted that it really inspired me to think up other story ideas. I had optimistic plans for 2008, including a long r/hr h/g series that I was planning to start late January. Then I received the rejection email on New Year's Day. It was disheartening.
Thankfully, I listened to a lot of encouraging people. I started to submit drabbles to rhr100 and was soon hooked on that. Then I started accio_rhr and started to write even more. Seven fics and a 40 or so drabbles later, I can say that I've put the "rejection" behind me. And I went so far as to submit another of my stories to checkmated...and it was just published the other day.

I won't resubmit this story to checkmated because those who have read it disagree with the council's findings. It has a happy home on ff.net, my site and now it has a place here.

Ron waited until Hermione and his family were busy preparing lunch before donning his heavy cloak and slipping out the back door. He passed through his Mum’s garden, the flower beds now bare in the dead of winter, and onto the path that led away from the house and to the small patch of land near the lake. Arriving at his destination, he crouched beneath the massive pine trees, their needled boughs drooping under the weight of the previous evening’s snowfall, and gently brushed the snow off the smooth stone marker.

“Hey Fred,” he greeted the gravestone, picking at various twigs lodged in the snow on the ground and tossing them aside. “It’s been a while,” he went on, “perhaps too long.” He stood and sighed, his breath coming out in a puff of wispy vapor, and he shivered involuntarily as a gust of frigid wind ruffled his ginger hair.

“I can’t believe it’s going to be four years this spring since you’ve been gone. Some days it feels like only yesterday, and others a lifetime.” He paused. “I heard George came by yesterday. Probably to tell you the good news, I gather. Alicia Spinnet, eh? I always thought she had her eye on George back at Hogwarts. Remember when she had to restrain him during the Quidditch match against the Slytherins when Malfoy taunted Harry? And the three of you wound up banned. Although I was a bit surprised when she suddenly started showing up at the shop two years ago. It didn’t take a genius to determine why she visited so frequently. It certainly wasn’t to buy any puking pastilles or wild fire whiz-bangs.” He chuckled to himself. “Good old George didn’t make it easy on her though. After the initial shock of everything, he completely threw himself into running the shop. Mum actually made me stay late some nights, just to make sure he’d eat dinner. I don’t think it had anything to do with him fancying her. I just think he felt guilty about...you know.” He rubbed his hands briskly together as the snow started to come down once again. “But I’m glad he finally opened his heart to her, because she’s been good for him. For Mum, too. It makes her so happy to see George finally moving on.” He paused.

“Harry’s going to make an honest woman out of Ginny, but I bet they told you already. Unlike George and Alicia, they’re settling for a long engagement. I think they’re waiting for me to ask Hermione so that we can have a double wedding. Don’t know if Hermione would go for something like that. I overheard her talking with Ginny the other day about Muggle weddings. Did you know that the blokes don’t even wear robes? They wear outfits called tuxedos. Harry called them ‘penguin suits’. Why anyone would want to look like a penguin is beyond me. Barmy Muggles. They’ve got a point thought. Two separate weddings would mean two separate occasions to suffer through Aunt Muriel. She’s still as "eccentric" as ever. Personally I don’t think that she’s ever going to die. That being said, I’m sure that you’re wondering why I haven’t proposed yet. I mean I’ve known Hermione was the girl for me before we even started seeing one another. And despite the fact that we bicker over everything, we still manage to get along pretty well.”

Ron started to pace a bit, shaking his legs every now and then to get the feeling back in them. “And that’s what brings me here today. The shop is doing...well much better than expected, given my inexperience with the more technical aspects of running a business when I first started. You’d be proud about the volume of sales we do a year now. Well enough to hire a full staff of employees to mind the counter and stockroom, while George and I tinker over new ideas for product lines. I’m never going to be the clever genius that you were when it came to formulating jokes, but I think that I’m still able to help George a bit when he gets stuck. And we’re going international! A few wizarding stores in America are interested in the Skiving Snackbox line. I never thought that I’d see the day when your little shop would hit it big. But it has.” He paused again and the smile dropped from his face. “And I think it’s time, Fred. The day we buried you, when everyone had gone back to the house, I stayed behind and I promised you that I’d watch over him. That I’d help out with the shop to the best of my ability. And I think that I have. George has Alicia now and the shop’s thriving. And now it’s time for me to move on. I want to be an Auror. I want to prevent innocent people from dying by the hands of dark wizards.” He stopped. “Like you. I want to make a difference in another way now and I just hope that I’ve done you proud.”

He crouched down once more and traced his brother’s etched name with a gloved fingertip. “I haven’t regretted one moment of helping George. But I need to start thinking about my future. And I’m sorry to say that it won’t be with Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes. It’ll be at the Ministry and with Hermione. And if I’ve learned anything, it’s that the future isn’t a given. And so we have to live for every moment because there might not be a tomorrow.”

Muted footsteps crunched in the snow nearby and Ron half turned as Hermione came into view. “There you are,” she said by way of greeting, her cheeks red from the cold and her hair just as bushy as ever. “I’ve been looking everywhere for you. Lunch is almost ready.”

Ron dropped an arm across her shoulder as she drew near. “Missed me?” he teased.

“Always,” she answered, her voice quite serious.

Their eyes met and Ron suddenly knew. He glanced quickly over to Fred’s grave and with a barely discernible nod, turned back to his girlfriend. “Marry me.”

“What?” whispered Hermione in shock.

Ron swallowed hard against the sudden lump in his throat. “I want you to marry me, Hermione.” Ron waited anxiously as tears filled her eyes. Was she about to say no? “Say something,” he finally stammered when he could take her silence no longer.

A tear spilled from eye and ran down her cheek and Ron was hard pressed not to reach up and wipe it away. “Ask me properly,” she finally said in a strangled whisper.


“Propose to me properly Ronald Weasley,” she repeated, her voice even more tremulous than it had been a moment before.

Properly? he thought. What does she-- oh! Grumbling under his breath about barmy muggles and their ridiculous traditions, Ron dropped to one knee in the snow, wincing as the cold, wetness immediately seeped through the cloth of his trousers. “Right,” he said as he gathered his thoughts. He looked up at her. “I don’t have a ring yet,” he warned in advance.” Hermione could only nod in response. “Alright then, here goes.” He gamely reached up and clasped her hands in his own. Then sighed in frustration and carefully peeled off both sets of gloves. There were just some things that you didn’t do while wearing gloves...apparently proposing was one of them. Holding her hands once again, Ron took a deep breath, looked up and met her eyes. “Hermione Jean Granger, would you do me the great honor o--”

“YES!” Hermione interrupted, flinging herself at him, laughing joyously as they tumbled back in the snow.”

“But I didn’t get to ask you properly yet,” Ron protested, trying to sort out their tangled limbs. He finally managed to get to his knees, pulling Hermione up so that they faced one another.

“Doesn’t matter,” she whispered, cupping his cheeks with her hands. “The answer would have been the same,” she told him before leaning forward to kiss him. It seemed to go on forever, until the need to breathe finally broke them apart. Hermione looked up and pointed to the sky over his shoulder. “Look.”

Ron helped her to her feet then turned around. Streaking across the sky through a break in the clouds was a rainbow. He pulled her close. “Not exactly as exciting as a whiz bang but I guess it's Fred's way of telling us that he approves,” he said. He smiled as he felt her answering squeeze. “Come on, let’s get back inside the house. Can’t have my fiancée freeze on me.”

“I like the sound of that,” Hermione mused as they walked, hand in hand, back down the path. After a few moments of companionable silence, she stopped and looked at him curiously. “What made you ask me at just that moment, Ron?”

He glanced back at Fred’s grave before pulling her forward. “It was time, Hermione. It was time.”


[User Picture]From: charma_10
2008-04-17 04:53 am (UTC)
yeh, hermione was sooooo out of character.

*is baffled*

I really loved this and if they didn't want it, more fool them. It's just right the way it is.
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[User Picture]From: writerwannabe
2008-04-17 04:03 pm (UTC)
When I wrote it, I thought that the best part of it WAS the proposal, lol.

In all the times I've imagined it, Ron never got the proposal right. If he planned it, he'd get too nervous and find a way to bumble his way through it. I always thought it would be a spur of the moment thing and completely shock Hermione.
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