Arthur Weasley had always considered himself to be a very level-headed and even-tempered man. All of his six older brothers had made fun of him for it when he was younger, but he had never seemed to mind. It was not a bad thing to have a control of one's anger. It had served him well more times than he cared to count or admit. Molly loved him for it. It had awarded him well at work. He had more friends when he was at Hogwarts than any of his brothers because of his calm, concise, and cool self-control.
He had always had control.
It was an odd feeling for him, one that bubbled up from the deepest part of his gut to the tips of his ears, to experience. The anger filled him up so thoroughly he thought it might kill him. He saw more red than in his family's hair. It blurred his vision and coated his entire being. He felt hatred. He felt malice. He felt red. There was nothing he was certain he was feeling anymore besides unbridled and unchecked anger.
He had not control over his emotions for the first time in his life.
Arthur supposed it was normal to be feeling those sorts of things.
He had heard that anger was part of the grieving process. He had heard that throwing things was normal for one that was in pain. He had never put much stock in those sorts of things. He was Arthur Weasely; anger was not something he allowed or felt very often. It was so rare; he found he wasn't very apt at identifying it. He had felt off, at first. He couldn't look at his sons face without feeling the sickly anger that seemed to consume his thoughts. He shouldn't have been angry. Fred was dead. He should not have been angry. He should not have wanted to hit things. It felt wrong, in his mind, to be feeling those sorts of things. Everyone else seemed to have a grasp with how to deal with their emotions. They cried like normal grievers.
He did not cry.
He did not weep.
He felt angry.
It had come upon him so suddenly he almost fell over in his spot in the Great Hall. It trolled up and down his spine, twisting his stomach and burning his brain.
He missed Fred. He had always thought he would be there, sneakily smiling at something with his twin brother. Arthur had always thought he would be coming home for Christmas diner. He assumed he would bring home little red-headed twins, little devils like George and him. He had assumed all sorts of things about the older twin. Molly used to talk about it when they were lying in bed at night. She liked to guess the names. Arthur liked to humor her.
They wouldn't be able to do those sorts of things anymore and that made Arthur incredibly angry.
His hands felt like they were perpetually clenched in anger. He didn't like to think that what he thought about himself his entire life was false. He, apparently, wasn't as calm as he had imagined and fashioned himself to be.
He supposed he should have had practice dealing with his anger.
It wouldn't have confused him so much if he had. He didn't like feeling that way. He didn't like that his insides felt like they were clenching up all the time. It was painfully uncomfortable. He was certain he would never want to feel this way again.
Of course, he would take the anger a million times over if that meant Fred would still be with them.
He did not feel like he was bargaining. It was a simple truth. Arthur Weasely would have taken his son's place in a heartbeat. He would have felt the anger for the rest of his life, never ending, never ceasing, if it meant Fred would still be with them, smiling and laughing. He kept those thoughts to himself. He didn't want to upset his Molly any more than she already was. She would look even more pained if he told her that. He wasn't sure if he would be able to stand it if she looked more hurt.
He resigned himself, after several long moments of staring at his son that looked like the one he had just lost, that he would keep the anger all to himself. He would keep it until it finally simmered down to a manageable level. He imagined it would abide eventually.
All these sorts of things came to an end eventually.
He knew he would never stop wishing it was him in his son's place, however.
Arthur knew he wouldn't stop feeling angry anytime soon. He supposed it was payback, of sorts, for all those blissful years he had had of not feeling any sort of heated feelings. Perhaps they had built up to that point, waiting to spill over at time in which he couldn't hold onto them anymore. Arthur had always wondered what it was like to be so angry it hurt. He wished he hadn't wondered. It was nothing one should wish for. He wished he could take it all back.
He wished he could have taken Fred's place.
He wished Fred could come back.