Chapter 1 : Wish You Were Here
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Lyrics: Wish You Were Here
Artist: Pink Floyd
So, so you think you can tell
Heaven from Hell,
Blue skys from pain.
Can you tell a green field
From a cold steel rail?
A smile from a veil?
Do you think you can tell?
Harry took a deep breath as he plunged through the cold glass storefront window and walked into the lobby of St. Mungo's. He nodded to the plump witch who sat behind the front desk of the busy lobby and walked on towards the stairs. The line of people, the many different charms or curses gone wrong didn't phase him as he continued. He could trace his current path in his sleep. It was a path he had taken many times throughout these past few years. He hated the path with a passion, and yet, his feet always carried him the same way.
With each stair, his weight seemed to grow until he reached the fourth floor of the hospital. He paused at the sight of double doors with small windows and a sign above them that said SPELL DAMAGE. Harry took a deep breath before walking on. It seemed like it had been so long ago when he had first stood here with Ron and Hermione after Ron's dad had been attacked at the Ministry. They had found Gilderoy Lockhart, one of their old professors, with his face pressed against the glass of the window. He gave a small smile at the memory. He'd give anything to have it back.
Harry waved a shaking hand through his hair and then moved on through the doors. He looked down the many rows of beds, though, he would always remember which he was looking for. At the sound of the doors opening, a pleasant witch popped her head around a curtain. Her smile was friendly as she said, "Well, hello, Mr. Potter. Right on time, I see." Harry nodded towards her and made his heavy feet move towards bed number three. There was a Chudley Cannon quilt over the bed and pictures of family and friends on the nightstand. Harry's stomach clinched at the sight of the pictures, so he ignored them.
When he sat down in the chair that had been set out for him, he asked the witch without turning,"Has there been any change?" He always knew the answer, but somehow, hope would entwine itself around in his heart to make him believe that maybe, just maybe, this time his old friend would be just sleeping.
"I'm afraid not, Mr. Potter," she answered. He could here the gentle pity in her voice and decided to ignore it. He nodded his head in dismissal. His gaze traveled along the face on the whtie pillow. It was a face he knew as well as his own. The freckles stood out in stark contrast to the pale skin beneath. The blue eyes were sightless as they looked upon the ceiling. The red hair around the face had grown wild but he could tell that someone, probably the Healer, had attempted to run a comb through it. Ronald Weasley looked a lot different now than his time at Hogwarts. Where his cheeks would have been puffy there were now gaunt with illness. Ron Weasley had not moved, talked, or reacted to any stimulation since the battlefield. Unshed tears welled up in Harry's eyes as he remembered the reason why his best friend, the closest thing he had to family, was laying like a vegetable in the bed.
And did they get you to trade
Your heros for ghosts?
Hot ashes for trees?
Hot air for a cool breeze?
Cold comfort for change?
And did you exchange
A walk on part in the war
For a lead role in a cage?
Bangs and crashes were sounding off from all around. The Order was trying with all its might to hold back the tide of Death Eaters behind them, but screams followed Harry, Ron, and Hermione as they fled down the passageway. "Here!" cried Ron as they finally made their way to opening beneath the Whomping Willow. Hermione pulled out her wand and prodded the knot that made the willow's branches go still. Quickly, the three crawled out of the space.
They stared in awe of the horror in front of them. There were parts of their beloved Hogwarts that was ablaze in the bright moonlight. "I can't believe it," Hermione murmured in a voice filled with tears. Harry turned to see Ron and Hermione gripping each other's hand.
"We have to stop him. He knows we destroyed the last Horcrux. We have to hurry or more than Hogwarts will be lost," Harry said as he started running across the grounds. He did not pause, as neither did Ron or Hermione behind him, near the groups of people who had spilled out. There were some teachers who raised their eyes in surprise and hope as they ran past. Flitwick gave an odd little salute then went back to attending a student's burn.
Harry was not to be deterred. He kept running. He felt something hit him in the back. It felt like a cold liquid was spreading across him. He stopped and looked behind him to see Hermione pointing her wand towards Ron and then at herself. "It will help protect us from the flames," she called out. He nodded as he ran through the roaring fire at the front doors and inside. He did not pause to see if Ron and Hermione were keeping up. They had been right behind him throughout the whole year, through each horcrux. Harry knew that they were following closely. He heard something whiz by his ear and turned to see a jet of red light hit a hidden Death Eater that looked as if it had been about to attack him. Yes, the two behind him still had his back.
His feet pounded the floor until he came to the Great Hall. He saw black robes go behind one of the doors. He changed course to go into the Great Hall. As he walked through, his wand flew out of his hand and he was pinned against the wall. It was Hermione who came in low and grabbed his wand and rolled behind one of the four great tables. Ron went low as well and rolled around. With a flick of Ron's wrist, Harry was freed. He rolled next to Ron.
"There's no use hiding," said a high, cold voice that echoed off the walls. "I knew you would come." Harry raise his head and looked towards the staff table. There sat Voldemort, in all his dark glory, in the Headmaster's chair. Ice and hatred wound themselves within his heart. Standing behind Voldemort was Severus Snape with an evil smile playing at the corner of his lips.
Harry felt something on his knee and looked down. Relief flooded him at the sight of his wand. Hermione must have rolled it over somehow. He grabbed the familiar piece of wood and then looked at Ron. This was it. The look that passed between them was fierce. They had been through a lot this past year and it had all been leading up to this. They had all grow up a lot as well. Harry could say that they were no longer children. He watched as Ron rolled his shoulders and gave him a big grin. Yep, Harry thought, this was indeed it.
And then, a bloodcurdling scream bounced around the walls. He heard Ron exclaim, "HERMIONE!" as he bounded over the table towards her cries. Harry jumped up and saw that Snape had soundlessly made his way towards Hermione and was torturing her with the Cruciatus Curse. Pride welled in him as he saw Ron tackle their old professor the ground. He knew that Ron could take care of it from there.
He started to walk towards Voldemort. Those slitted red eyes watched in amusement at his approach. "So, the Chose One has come for me?"
"You could say that," Harry said through gritted teeth. He tried hard to ignore the grumbles and curses coming from the fight behind him.
Voldemort looked him up and down. "Are you finally a man? Do you think that now you are all grown up, you can best me?"
"Well," said Harry with a smile. "I have destroyed all your Horcruxes. Nothing of your soul remains. After I destroy you, you will forever be gone."
The small smile that had been on the evil lord's face dropped like a ton of bricks. "I will make more. Starting with you. But first," he said and flicked his wand towards him. Harry, for some reason, had not been ready. There was no time for ducking away. What he didn't count on was for Ron to push him out of the way. He watched, in silent horror, as his best mate stood frozen in an odd yellow light then crumble silently to the stone floor with his eyes wide.
How I wish, how I wish you were here.
We're just two lost souls
Swimming in a fish bowl,
Year after year,
Running over the same old ground.
What have we found?
The same old fears.
Wish you were here.
Tears fell silently down Harry's cheeks as he stared at his old friend now. "Why did you do it?" he whispered. No flicker could be seen in those blue eyes as Harry mourned his friend. "It's not right without you. You're my brother," Harry whispered. His shoulders shook with the weight of his guilt. "If not for me, you'd be happy now."
Harry didn't know how long it was that he sat there. The tears came in a torrent that would not be eased. All these years, Harry had wished that he would have been the one to be in that bed. He had finished off Voldemort in angry vengenance and had sat shocked as Hermione had cried over Ron. Snape laid bleeding and unconcious in the corner where Ron had beat him into an unconcious lump.
He had lost so much. It seemed so unfair that his friend should have to lose happiness too. Ron had sacrificed himself so that he could kill Voldemort. Harry knew that. Still, he carried the guilt that he had not been fast enough to react, to duck, to do something other than stand there as Voldemort had flicked that wand. If he had reacted sooner... then Ron may still be concious with them. "I'm sorry, Ron. I'm so sorry," he whispered.
He had watched from a distance as the Weasleys and Hermione had mourned his friend. They had sat a lonely vigil for weeks as the Healers tried to figure out how to fix it. Harry couldn't look any of them in they eye. It was his fault. "I wish you were here with me. I don't know where it is you've gone off to, mate. But you need to come back," he said softly.
"Visiting hours are almost up," the Healer said from behind him. He could tell by the inflection in her voice that she had been watching and listening. Harry's green eyes traveled over his friend's face one last time before he stood and made his way out the door. He heard the Healer muttering under her breath as he left.
Before he knew it, Harry was standing outside on a crowded London street. He watched the people walking, carrying on with their business and conversations. He saw a group of young men laughing in the distance. Harry turned away from the sight and slunk away into the shadows as he carried the guilt with him. He would return, the same time tomorrow, as he would the next day, and the next day, until Ron awakened...
(A/N: This is my first songfic. Please let me know what you think! :) )