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Oct. 5th, 2007 | 02:01 am

This is cross-posted from my CDJ, but I really liked it, so I figured I would put it up here, too. Ignore my Harry Potter geekiness, kthx.

Title. 20 Truths You May or May Not Know About Anthony Goldstein.
Author. the_andorran
Pairing(s)/Character(s). Anthony Goldstein, non-shippy but with mentions of Anthony/Susan.
Rating. PG-13ish.
Word Count.
Disclaimer. All props go to JK Rowling and her publishers. Meme here.

  1. Jewish tradition forbids naming a child after a living person, so much that some people have claimed that it’s “impossible” for there to be a Jewish “junior.” This apparently didn’t bother Anthony Goldstein’s mother, because she gave him the middle name Isaac for her father without batting an eye. His father might have had something of a problem with this, but probably knew better than to say so.

  2. One of Anthony’s deepest, most shameful secrets is that he was, for a time, deeply in love with his older brother’s girlfriend, Rosalind, and contemplated asking her to marry him. That he was eight years old at the time doesn’t comfort him much.

  3. His wishes to marry Rosalind were really part of a long-standing habit he developed of falling for girls rather harder than he probably should have. He rarely fancies girls, but when he does, it’s always something that seems just too intense to handle. It all began with Jessica Daniels, who went to his synagogue (he gave her a flower and asked her to marry him – she said no but took the flower anyway; he was six), then Rosalind (he never had the nerve to ask her to marry him because clearly his brother was going to do that soon), and then the summer before his third year, there was Rosemary Fenway (who lived across the hall from him and would read books – The Legend of Earthsea by Ursula K. LeGuin – on the rooftop, and he would sit next to her until the end of summer came and she kissed him. She had moved away by the time that he returned for the Christmas holidays). He told Susan that he would marry her when they were fifth years and he wasn’t sure if he entirely meant it, but, being sixteen, he understood the implications of saying so in a way that he didn’t when he was six.

    It’s not so much that he’s dreadfully serious about relationships so much as that he always felt as though he was searching for something deeper than so many of his peers always were. He partially blames his parents – seeing two people so happy to be with each other after so many years cemented the idea in his mind that this had to be the highest form of existence. Call him an idealist and you would be correct.

  4. Andrew Goldstein was never really in the habit of being particularly kind to his younger brother. The fourteen year age gap between them always made any sort of closeness between them difficult. Anthony often focuses on the differences between them, how Andrew is taller, stronger, more handsome, more intelligent, more successful, but the truth is that Andrew has given him much of what he loves because of their similarities. Without Andrew, Anthony wouldn’t have Arsenal football, the Smiths, or Star Wars.

    The two of them don’t have much to say to each other most of the time, but as he grows older, Anthony realizes that it’s easier to talk to Andrew than it is to talk to almost anyone else. Not so much that he listens, but that the conversation between them flows easily. If he’s in the mood, he can talk to his brother for hours and laugh until he cries. Unfortunately, these conversations usually end with one of them either hanging up on each other or storming out of the room.

  5. In fourth year, Anthony seriously considered asking Padma Patil to the Yule Ball. It wasn’t so much that he fancied her as that the two seemed like fairly good friends and she was the only girl in his house and year that he hadn’t heard giggling about date prospects in the common room. Just as he was contemplating the best way to explain to her that they should go to together as friends, his parents sent him an owl reminding him that they would be going to Poland over the Christmas holiday to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of his grandparents’ liberation from Auschwitz.

    Stuck in Oświęcim with his parents, brother, and more-mournful-than-usual grandparents, he never felt more separated from his housemates. While they were all dancing to the Weird Sisters, drinking butterbeer, and sharing their first kisses with each other, Anthony sat in the Polish winter and felt sorrow more acute than the cold. When he expressed this feeling to his brother, Andrew said sagely, “Such is the curse of being a Jew, Anthony.”

  6. Everyone seems to have an interesting story about their Sorting except Anthony, one that reveals something about their personality. He feels as though his Sorting makes him seem rather bland. Terrified and nearly shaking with fear, he sat down on the stool, pulled the Hat over his head, and listened as it quickly decided (not so many words) that he was too boring to be in Gryffindor and put him in Ravenclaw in a matter of about ten seconds.

    After reflecting upon it years later, Anthony is glad that he wasn’t put in Gryffindor. The idea of sharing a dorm with Harry Potter frightens him and seems intimidating. He looks at the Gryffindors and doesn’t feel as though he actually could have been close friends with any of them. It’s not that he’s not proud of being a Ravenclaw – he is, very much so. But sometimes he feels rather ashamed of himself and feels as though he wasn’t really good enough to be a Gryffindor. His father was in the house while he was in school, and somehow he feels as though he would have been somewhat more proud if one of his sons had gone there as well.

  7. Perhaps it’s because he grew up in a very small flat in a very narrow, tightly-built city, but Anthony has always been somewhat agoraphobic. Any space more wide and expansive than Hyde Park makes him nervous. When discussing this fear with his then-girlfriend, Susan Bones, he told her, “I really just don’t like buildings where I can’t tell what’s going on all the time. I couldn’t live in a house where you could get far enough away that you can’t shout to get each other’s attention.” Susan reacted with shock and amusement, saying, “Anthony, you live in a castle.

  8. He learned to cook from his Oma, his father’s mother, the only extended relative he has who seems to like him more than his older brother. His grandmother feels as though Anthony has a deep sensitivity that’s rare, but instead of saying so, she takes him into the kitchen and talks to him as he helps her cook. Though Anthony doesn’t think that confiding in your grandmother is really the greatest thing to do, she somehow always manages to weasel secrets out of him – his problems at school, his feelings about girls, his anger at his parents. Oma always listens without judgment, but something feels strange about confiding in his grandmother. He only tells her these things because he feels trapped and guilty. He feels guilty for his happiness – why should he have a happy life when his grandmother has suffered so much? After the war, Oma stops asking Anthony about his problems. Perhaps they have become too unhappy for her.

  9. Anthony’s mother often says that he eats more chocolate than a menstruating woman. Thankfully, he doesn’t need chocolate to ease PMT or depression – he just loves it that much. If he were ever allowed, he could go through half a dozen Cadbury chocolate bars in a night.
  10. When Anthony was a small child, through watching the BBC and various other television, he realized that the accents of the people around him were perceived as unintelligent by other British people. Growing up in the East End of London, he was used to hearing Cockney accents. His father, having been raised partly in Germany, England, and Israel, speaks in a manner that seems to be unique to himself, and his mother doesn’t have much of an accent at all, but his neighbors, teachers, and friends growing up had thick Cockney drawls, and he started to adopt one as well. Around the age of seven, he decided to consciously weed the Cockneyisms out of his speech, perhaps perceiving the stigma of low class and lack of education that came along with coming from the East End. He emulated the news anchors on the BBC and by the time he arrived at Hogwarts, he spoke perfectly.

    Despite this, he sometimes wishes that he hadn’t been so ashamed of his origins in Bethnal Green and wishes that he could slip back into sounding like a Bell-Bow Cockney, but the ability seems to have escaped him, and when he tries, he ends up sounding like a caricature rather than the real thing.

  11. It wouldn’t be fair to call Lydia Goldstein a career woman, as she has never been terribly ambitious, but she always loved Tudor history more than the idea of being a housewife, and so both of Anthony’s parents worked from the time that he entered primary school. Since his father worked in the Ministry and often traveled, Anthony divided his after school hours between his great Aunt Luise’s flat in Whitechapel and his mother’s office at the Tower of London.

    The Tower was an interesting sort of place to grow up, and Anthony came to know the Yeomen and other historians who worked there, the Tower itself, and the lure associated. Many people seem frightened by the Tower – it does have a dark and bloody history. But for Anthony, it has always reminded him of his mother and provided a strange sense of comfort. Much to her chagrin, Lydia’s love of history never took, though, and History of Magic was the only class that Anthony got less than an E in on his OWLs.

  12. Although he’s quite bright, does well in his schoolwork, and can actually play pick-up football fairly well, Anthony isn’t really exceptional at much of anything besides playing dreidel. The only thing that he is consistently better at than everyone else is a stupid, stereotypical Hanukkah game, much to his chagrin. The only benefit to this is that, each year, Andrew becomes determined to beat him, and subsequently loses all of his gelte in a long, drawn-out Dreidel-Off.

  13. For some reason, his fifth year at Hogwarts became the Year of the Unexpected. To begin with, he didn’t expect to be appointed prefect. Reflecting upon it, Anthony’s not sure who he did think would be made prefect, simply that he never expected it to be him. His parents were terribly pleased; Andrew had been both prefect and Head Boy during his time at Hogwarts. He never would admit it, but he was really quite good at being a prefect – he and Padma made a good team. She usually played bad cop in that she was the most concerned with handing out detentions and docking house points; he played good cop in that he comforted younger students, gave advice, and patiently helped with homework.

  14. He hardly expected to be the first of his friends to lose his virginity, either. It always seemed as though Michael would be the first – he was easier with girls and more eager to do it. It mattered to Michael. Not Terry as much, but Anthony saw more desirable qualities in Terry than himself. And it wasn’t as though he was saving himself for anything in particular, but that it all came so early surprised him. When he met Susan Bones during Dumbledore’s Army meetings, he never would have predicted he would fall for her so hard and so fast, or that he would want her so much.

    It was a strange feeling, even stranger for it to be returned with such intensity. Anthony had never really expected himself to be loved, not like this. When he touched her, he felt an exhilaration, not only because of his attraction to her, but because she returned his touch with equal pressure. They only planned for the distant future, the house that they would live in, the garden she would tend to, the children they would have (she wanted four, he wanted two); the next day or the next week were always a mystery, and they never talked about the act before they did it. He never decided to have sex with her, it merely happened, he found himself tangled up with her, tremulous with desire and nervousness.

    He sometimes wonders if he shouldn’t have done it, but he never, never regrets it.

  15. Anthony never had any strong feelings about Harry Potter, which was why he was surprised to find himself befriending him (as much was possible) through Dumbledore’s Army that year. He admired what Harry had done, but like so many others, he wasn’t sure if he should believe half the things he heard about Harry. His reasons for joining the DA were twofold – he wanted an O on his Defense Against the Dark Arts OWL and his current curriculum-based training surely wasn’t going to do that for him, and he really, really detested Dolores Umbridge and wanted to do whatever he could do defy her.

    He wouldn’t really consider Harry a friend, but working with him through the DA gave Anthony a large amount of respect for Harry, and he always felt as though, if Harry ever needed anything from him (which he probably never would), Anthony would give it to him in a heartbeat. The feeling he had for Harry wasn’t devotion so much as loyalty, he loved Harry, in a way, because Harry was a leader in a way that Anthony never could be. It was a strange emotion to experience – Anthony had never been loyal to someone before. The feeling of wanting to protect his family and friends was very different from the need to stick by Harry. In many ways, it scared him, because as the situation in the wizarding world became more and more dire, he began to realize that, by joining the DA, he had become a part of something that was going to shake the foundations of their society.

  16. Anthony doesn’t care very much for television, but he does have a vested interest in the soap opera EastEnders. Sometime around the age of thirteen, he began watching it with his mother and can’t stand not knowing what’s going on. His mum writes him updates while he’s at Hogwarts.

  17. No one seems to remember Anthony’s first sign of accidental magic – not his mother, his father, his brother, his aunt who cared for him, no one. There were no reports of odd behavior from his teachers in primary school, and all falls he took seemed to result in an appropriate bodily injury. No blue wigs or blown up rubbish bins, no dangerous falls from rooftops. Anthony was far too calm a child to display many signs of magic.

    No one ever seemed to worry that he was a Squib, though. His mother at one point expressed concern to his father – shouldn’t he be blowing things up like his older brother had? Samuel Goldstein explained the concept of Squibs to her, but neither of them worried much about whether or not he would be. If he was, then he would remain a part of the Muggle world that he was already so familiar with.

    As for Anthony, he never felt concern over his magical abilities, either. He always felt as though he had the ability to control his environment – he could make blades of grass move and always seemed to be able to find things when he lost them by concentrating summoning them to himself. When he received his Hogwarts letter, he was pleasantly reassured and went off to learn how to perfect his craft.

  18. Since Anthony’s father served as the Ministry of Magic’s ambassador to Israel, as soon as signs of corruption in the Ministry became clear, his father and brother had the means to escape England for Israel. Anthony and his mother, however, chose to stay. His mother was a Muggle, uninvolved in the political situation going on at the time, and she didn’t see why she should leave. She had a job, friends, a life in London, and she didn’t feel as though she should give all of that up because of conflict in a world she didn’t belong to.

    As for Anthony, he knew when he joined the DA that he had a part to play in the war. Staying when he could have left wasn’t easy, but he felt as though it was the right thing to do, the moral thing to do. He has always felt as though his father betrayed something he had always stood up for – the need to fight social injustice. After all that his grandparents went through in Auschwitz, Anthony felt as though he owed it to them and to humanity to do everything he could to end social injustice.

  19. Because of his status as a prefect, early on in his seventh year at Hogwarts, Anthony was often called upon to help “discipline” younger students who had been given detentions for various reasons. He always refused, and he never knew which consequence was worse, watching the Carrows hurt them or being the butt of the violence himself. He couldn’t stand either, he couldn’t stand the idea that he was somehow responsible for the eleven year old writhing under the Cruciatus Curse – the sounds of their screams never left him, never will leave him. He will never forgive himself for not being able to do more to help them, but he feels as though he was too afraid to take them all and run. He hates remembering the feeling of powerlessness under the Carrows.

    After helping to mend the third split lip and black eye he’d been given in a matter of two weeks, his friend Morag MacDougal gently suggested that perhaps he should do what the Carrows asked of him – that he should at least attempt the Cruciatus Curse, maybe just try it to show that he would cooperate and listen. But Anthony didn’t want to cooperate, he would rather be killed than let himself try to hurt some else in that way – that Morag would even suggest it disgusted him. It takes him a long time to forgive her for that.

  20. The physical injuries which Anthony received during the war were easily treated, but he feels afterwards that he was injured somewhere much deeper, that a piece of himself was taken by the Carrows, by Snape, by the Death Eaters, by Lord Voldemort. Muggle adults whom he meets have a certain innocence about them, an innocence of suffering, and there are times when he wonders why this was taken from him at the age of seventeen. This makes talking to his oma so much more difficult – he doesn’t want to burden her with his pain.

    It isn’t until he runs into Susan again that he begins to feel as though a part of himself has been given back to him. It’s easier with her, they shared the experience, yet they didn’t. When he wakes up, restless in the night from memories invading his dreams, she knows better than to ask, and merely to hold him and let them be near each other.

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