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Chapter 66 : Sacrifice
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Voldemort waited as patiently as he ever had, within the forest, for Harry to come. It had been three hours now, out in the cold, but he waited patiently all the same. He had waited seventeen years now for this moment, what was a few minutes more going to harm him? And yet he watched as his army slaughtered hundreds on the opposite side, mostly students. Such a shame, but he didn’t want the weak and the opposition in his world, and it made more sense for them to die now than later, when he would have to waste his own energy on them. He clutched his wand in his hand, at the ready, fully aware that he only had one shot with it. Better make the most of it.
He wondered where Lucius had gotten to. He had only sent him to collect a sword, and how complicated could that possibly be? He looked about, Lucius’ son Draco at the side of him. He would always be a follower, never a fighter. It was in his genetic makeup. And even Narcissa was here, now, to fight for her Dark Lord, for her husband and her son, too, though if she had known what Voldemort really had planned, all of it would have been in vain.
His lip curled back as the dementors surrounded him, ready to suck the life from anyone who dared to approach, anyone that was not Harry. So far, nobody had approached him. The threstals were heading people off, he knew, and that worked to his advantage as well as their own. He didn’t want a floor of dead people surrounding him, for their bodies would get in the way, and would only be a nuisance, but it would be one less person for him to get rid of in the future. “I don’t think they’re coming,” Draco mumbled under his breath.
He had a lot of nerve, “They’re coming,” Voldemort spoke through gritted teeth.
“And my father?”
“He’ll be here. And if he’s not, there’ll be a problem,” the way in which he said this made it clear that the problem would be entirely on Lucius’ part, not his own as such, though that would make things more complex.
Then he came, running as fast as he could, through the trees and the dementors came and fled once more. Behind Lucius, a woman was running at top speed, aiming powerful spells left and right. She even looked powerful, wise and in control of the situation, unlike Lucius who ran for his life, like the coward that he was. Voldemort growled, snatching the sword from him and prepared for his first battle of the evening. “I lost,” Lucius Malfoy breathed, “the cloak.”
“Good evening, Tom,” she spoke, smoothly and easily.
“Good evening, Caroline. Dumbledore,” he nodded his head in respect, fully understanding the mindshare that had occurred, and that Snape had betrayed him in a way he had never expected. He prepared to face the magical being with nothing but a sword in his hand. Even the dementors weren’t powerful enough to face her, or him, the pair together. They didn’t move, shrinking away as Lucius himself did, creeping to the back of his group of fellow Death Eaters: his son, his wife, who sighed in relief. He, however, still shook within his boots.
“Prepare to duel,” she pulled her wand out and placed it to his chest. Voldemort was fearful for the first time since Voldemort’s death, but with his sword in hand, he knew that he had the blood of the basilisk within it. He was at an advantage. He demanded Narcissa’s wand, too, just for good measure, holding it within his grip and preparing to fight.
Fire on fire on water, now powered the battle between the two of them. It was almost impossible to see whose rage was whose, but there certainly was a lot of rage and anger, disgust. There had been sacrifice all about, Snape included, for which Voldemort was grateful. It had spared him the job of doing it now.
She knew she had slipped, “I’m sorry, Severus. I hope you are happy with your Lily.” She slipped, falling onto the floor, tears in her eyes as she faced her death. She looked up now, her face strong, her jawline stronger.
And now, he struck down the girl, “Avada Kedevra,” as if both she and Dumbledore were flies, nothings in the grand scale of things. He kicked her to one side. It was settled then, the truth lay out for all to see. Voldemort was indeed the strongest, most powerful wizard on the Earth, nothing and nobody could stand in his way now, he had even defeated Dumbledore! Twice!
He cackled, turning to his followers and snarling, “You see? See how nobody dares to stand against me? They can’t handle the pressure. The world falls before me!” A twig snapped just beyond and he turned his head towards the noise, but nobody was there. Strange. “I am a God! A God!” It was never more evident than then that Voldemort had fallen a victim to his own insanity, as so many others had, too. In a way, even Harry had fallen victim to his insanity, as he had lost his parents thanks to Voldemort. Of course, he was coming now, Voldemort could feel it, hear his feet pounding the Earth, and no matter if he was imagining it or if it was real, it didn’t matter. He was coming, coming to his death.
He pulled back his teeth like a wolf, listened as his Death Eaters came in one by one, giving reports on the situation outside, but he took none of it in. None of it mattered to him, so long as Harry Potter was coming, coming to his death. And those words continued to repeat throughout his mind for a good while longer until finally the twig snapped again, and the final battle began, the greatest battle of all time.
Ginny screamed, cried, “Seamus!” as she saw him fall before her, his eyes becoming lifeless, his blood starting to run cold. There was no spell that could bring a person back from the dead, and that was the worst thing in the whole world. The love of her life was gone now, evapourated before her very eyes. She broke down into tears now, sobbing uncontrollably, trying to stop herself but not wanting to at the same time. She pulled him out of the way, off to one side, where she could mourn him once more, pressing her cheek against his own, feeling as the last warmth of his body drained away from him. It wasn’t fair. Seamus was one of the only people who had ever cared about her enough to protect her and give her her own freedom at the same time. None of her brothers had ever given her that.
“No!” she screamed out to the skies above, but nobody turned to look. Nobody cared that he had gone, not the way that she cared. She melted into sobs and fits of tears over the loss. How could she continue to go on, when everthing she loved had melted away, now, too?
Nobody came to help her, nobody came to rescue her from herself, just left her there. Her hair lacked its lustre, the night turned a shade darker, and all of a sudden life didn’t seem all that worth living, far from it. Her Irish lover was gone, the only one that she had ever truly loved and in that moment there was an ache in her chest which made it feel like she would never love again. How could she when he was gone? There was nothing left, nothing but to kill the one who murdered him. The lock of black hair turned the corner now. She didn’t know his name, hardly cared as she ran over and tapped him on the shoulder. As he turned, she prepared her fist for the worst, pulling it out in preparation for punching him. He had killed his last, now, as she made a clear hit for his face, and he fell in shock. It had dislocated its jaw. They each pulled out their wands now, ready to battle one another for the last time in one of their lives. So long as she lived, she wouldn’t let him get away with this, no matter how physically and mentally tired, unprepared, she was. She simply couldn’t let this one go.
Fist of all, in anger and despair, Ginny could think of nothing more than the conjunctivitis charm to curse him with, but even that seemed enough, on top of a broken jaw, to leave him stumbling backwards, giving her a little time to think. She tried a worse charm this time, one she had only ever heard Harry mentioning in conversation, “Sectumsempra!” and then she saw the blood pouring out of him, and everthing seemed all of a sudden even darker than before. Cuts arose right the way across his body, leaving him disorientated and begging for his life, through the small gasps of air that his lungs let in, though they too were shredded to pieces. Ginny had never seen anything worse, never done anything worse in her whole entire life, as she fell backwards of her own accord, trying to stop herself from throwing up, but there was blood and mucus in her throat, as she cried at the sight. “Help! Please someone help!” yet nobody came to his rescue.This was how she had wanted it, wasn’t it? She wanted him to die, painfully, the way that Seamus had. But this wasn’t what Seamus would have wanted.
“Evanesco!” she cast the spell, pointing her wand at herself. She just wanted to be lost for now, maybe recovered at the end of it all. The sight continued to play inside of her mind, his blood soaked body, Seamus’ lifeless eyes, herself losing control. That was what had happened. She had lost control, and now she couldn’t possibly forgive herself for what she had done. Would anyone be able to? Clouds of thick smoke suffocated her, coming from her own mind that surrounded and swirled about, confusing her greatly. She cried, softly at first, but then gradually harder, sobs wracking through her, the hurt tearing her into tiny little pieces. Soon, she found herself unable to stop, didn’t want herself to stop, losing herself in the love that she once had, and the pain that she felt losing it. The pain which she had caused losing it. Nothing was worth anything anymore. As soon as something had become important to her, it was destroyed. She had destroyed everything.
She was probably better off having vanished, for she was no use to the world at any rate. Deep, calming breaths rose up from within her and she forced them out of her. Just another casualty of war. She had to pick herself up and move on, the way she had after Remus and after Fred. Now she would have to do the same again, because life continued onwards whether she wanted it to or not. There was no changing that fact, no matter how dreary it made the world. She sat in her blank space of nothingness, allowing herself to see the blankness outside, and she felt at peace.
She knew how selfish she was being, that she had her part to play, that she had to continue fighting, but at the moment, as she held up her cheeks with her knuckles, causing them to splay outwards and her to look chubby, she didn’t want to. She destroyed everything and just wanted to be left alone. After all, Voldemort had never attacked Harry until after she had been born. But the pair had never even known each other. How could she be so self-centred, she asked herself then? The war had started without her and would continue on with or without her help. She composed herself once more, and with the simple swish of her wand, she found herself amidst the hell once more.
Hermione began to sob. “That was our last chance. I can’t believe it’s not here.”
“There’s more than one way to skin a cat you know,” Cho interrupted, looking at us with tired eyes. She knew the repercussions of her words even before we knew what she was talking about.
“What do you mean?”
“She means,” the nameless man spoke, “unicorn blood. Unicorn blood destroys Horcruxes. But any who kills a unicorn is doomed to a half life.”
“It would be worth it to save the planet. I’d do it myself,” Ron spoke bravely and I sank back inside of myself. He had grown so much over time, especially during the time I had known him, and he was more honourable than anyone else I knew in that moment in time. Few people would give up half their lives to destroy a few measley objects. There was still one missing.
I gulped, for in that second I knew what I had to do, “He doesn’t have to,” I whispered, staring down on the pile of objects. “All it would take is a few drops of Voldemort’s blood, or a few drops of my own.”
“More than a few drops, beautiful,” the man warned.
“Aava, no. You’re not risking yourself like that,” Harry warned, by he had no other choice.
“I don’t care. Give me your knife,” I demanded of the man, and Hermione stood gormlessly, unable to help, She couldn’t move, rooted to the spot in sher amazement of my own willpower. I had to do this.
I cut, perhaps a little to deeply, on both wrists. Harry had to force me into stopping myself as I brought them over, the blood dripping down onto the objects, which began to melt away, sizzle and burn, blast themselves into a thousand pieces, destroyed. It hurt, as the silver in my blood became more evident, draining away, but taking the red with it too. I couldn’t let too much fall. I couldn’t allow myself to die. My duty had not yet been fulfilled. “That’s enough,” Cho, for it had been evident that she had been in training, pulled my arms away, into myself. “We should bandage these up.”
“Later, there’s no time,” yet a pounding in my head told me otherwise. Would there even be a later? Not if I bled to death there wouldn’t be.
Horcruxes destroyed, everything seemed so much clearer. At the bottom of the third floor staircase, we came face to face with Bellatrix Lestrange. “Ah, wickle Potter! It’s about time you were brought down a notch or two, don’t you think? Shame about that Vance girl, don’t you think?”
“You killed her?” he roared out, his throat closing up tightly. This was the first death he had heard of, but it was inevitable that there were many more yet to come.
“Yes, and now I’m going to kill you.”
“Harry, there’s no time,” Hermione warned, tears rolling down her precious white cheeks. “You and Aavalyn, you need to keep moving! You have to reach Voldemort before it’s too late. I’ll hold the fort here.”
Harry didn’t have time to stop and ask if she was sure, he had to keep moving on, and I followed after him, down the stairs, out of the door, my feet pounding the hard and heavy floor. I was tired, my breathing was heavy, but I forced myself onwards, out of the double doors and even further than I thought my legs could carry me. The forest was thick, the foliage and mud caked me as we pushed our way through. Threstals met us at the partition, guiding our way to the one person we most needed to see, yet the one person our very hearts screamed at us never to go near again, especially not after all the pain he had caused, after all the times he had tried to kill us and our friends. Was he worth it? No, but that was the very reason this was necessary.
As we approached the opening, I stood on a twig. I was going to keep moving but Harry stopped me, holding me back with the simple movement of his arm. I saw Voldemort’s red eyes glow into the darkness and I knew that no matter what, Harry was priority. No matter what happened, I had been warned by Mystic Meg all those months ago that I was doomed to a half life no matter what. That just made Harry all the more important. Voldemort stopped staring, but when the girl fell, died, was kicked aside as if she were nothing, I couldn’t stand aside. Each person mattered as much as the next, and what happened next was inevitable whichever way you looked at it. Maybe it was fate, bringing me back to that place, with him. Maybe it was something more powerful, more enticing, more like love.
A deep throaty growl leapt from out of Professor Dracula’s throat at the sight of her father falling. “Father, no!”
“Please, let him go,” one of her clan held her back, stopped her from going towards him. “He was old, weak, had the best of his times.”
“How can you say that? He’s my Dad!” she was screaming now, crying, trying to stop her emotions from getting the better of her, but it was hard. “He was my Dad!” she growled again, more aggressively this time, and she was more determined than ever that she was going to get them back for this. Those weak little excuses for vampires, were nothing compared to her and the fury within her.
One by one, they were drained and thrown aside like cartons of juice, like nothing, like they never existed. And they were nothing to her, worse than nothing, maybe even something she just scraped off the bottom of her shoe. Squelch. She ripped the head from the base of her shoe, throwing it to one side as if it was meaningless, and to her it truly was, more than anything else was, now that he was gone. A fang through the neck here, a curse through the heart there, she fought her way through to the end of the battle. Nothing and nobody would stand in her way, unless they had stupidity stamped across their forehead. Which, unfortunately, some people seemed to have.
These vampires were unlike her own, sick and massachistic, to an extent she had not even thought possible from a human, any variation of human in fact. But then there was Voldemort. And it seemed to make sense that all of his followers were much like him. People didn’t care that they were standing on the face of the great Dracula himself, sad as it was that he was gone. People could at least respect him in his absence. Christine held no respect within her anymore, not for the enemy at least, who slaughtered carelessly and with ease, not bothing with who they killed. But was it not the same in every war?
She watched out of the corner of her eye as Aavalyn sped fast off towards the forest. It was needless to say who she was facing. “Be careful,” she whispered to the girl who couldn’t hear her at that moment in time. If she applied everything they had taught her in training. Who was Christine trying to kid herself? Voldemort was the most powerful man on the planet. There was very little chance any of her training was going to help. Only luck would get her out of this pickle. Christine blocked.
Madame Maxime had been kind enough to fly in all the way from France, and now faught alongside her friends, or rather acquaintances and ex-students. On her left, Fleur and her new husband. On her right, Rubeus Hagrid, who had taken a particular liking to her when she had visited the school three years ago, or so she remembered it. They didn’t really keep in touch after that, but now here they were, in some ways reuinited, in others torn apart, and in quite another way about to be ripped into pieces before they had gotten anywhere.
They fought the giants and werewolves, who came together in mounds and it was hard to distinguish between the two after a while, for their method of attack, one from the front and one from above, made it difficult for anyone who wasn’t mad-eye, who had passed away several months ago now, to fight them at the same time. All it too was a heavy blow to the head and Hagrid was down. She guarded him as best she could, tried to stop the shrieks that were being emitted from her mouth, and most of all fought with double strength to protect him as the healers in training, the small fourth and fifth year students, ran to heal his wounded head. Amongst the cerfuffle, so much was happening and it was simple enough to lose oneself in it all. Sometimes, and not by choice, Madame Maxime found herself doing just that, and it was apparent that Hagrid had already done so.
He had long since lost his brother, Grawp, and now, forced with the agony of fighting those that reminded him of them, he had lost control, lost his balance and come crashing down to the floor. Things could be worse though, for him, they could be a lot worse. He might have died, and yet he was lucky enough to have a thick skull. If one of those clubs had come down on Fleur’s head, Maxime wouldn’t know what to do, but she wouldn’t be responsible for her actions. She, a giant herself, found it much easier to defeat the werewolves, who ran about her stomach, a simply enough height for her to dispel them like little ragdolls that meant nothing.
She had a strong stomach for gore, always had done, and it only spurred her on further with an anger deep inside of her. She didn’t like the thought of being able to do something and yet leaving it to others, perhaps less able others, to do for her, and so she didn’t. Even in the toughest of times, she continued to move on forwards and fight her way through battles, like she always had, like she always would. And she could see some of that strength mirrored now, in Fleur. Perhaps she had pushed her a little too far, stretched her a little too much when it came to the Triwizard Tournament. But since then Fleur had grown into someone really quite remarkable. A strong, wise and beautiful woman who knew her own mind and fought for what was right. Madame Maxime had never been so proud of any of her students in all her life. She was struck, and her attention returned to the fight at hand. She hit back.
Jemma ran out into the field, although she was weak, willing to fight this time. For one last time, she had grown up completely. For one final time, she realised that she wasn’t as important as her mind liked to make out at times. That she had been right to give herself in as Aavalyn that first time, that everything which she had ever done wrong needed repaying and she set off to do so.
Along her path, she bumped into Viktor Krum, who himself had changed from the Dark Side to the Good, or so the rumours went. Who actually knew if he was evil to start with? Nobody but himself, really. That was the truth. She sighed in relief at the sight of him, bundled over, tapped him on the shoulder and as he turned held out her arm, “Direct me to the fight.”
“I don’t think you are vell enough to fight little von,” he said, giving her a stern look but she pouted, more determined than ever that she was ready to fight, even if that meant being taken down.
And even now, as the spell came towards her, suffocating her of her final breaths as the noose hung around her neck, she felt a tugging inside of her, taking her away from her body. She struggled against the rope at first, but soon slackened as the panic vanished and she realised that she was going to a better place. Her sins would be forgiven for this one last try, or so she hoped. The real struggle was for Viktor Krum, who had warned her before she had entered into battle that she wasn’t ready. He’d never really seen her intentions, even after death, and was faced with the mourning of her tired, lifeless body. He picked her up now, removing the rope from around her neck, where a mark lay, and cradled her to his chest. People would be sorry to see her go. She had real friends, true friends, he was sure, ones that perhaps she had forgot in the midst of all the drama she had suffered from throughout the night, and throughout all the nights previous to this one which had led to her being in such a sticky situation in the first place. And now- this. Would they even turn up for her funeral?
He might even have cried, if he had the time, but instead he carried the girl away to one side and started up his own fight once more. It was appealing for him to want to best outcome for the war, of course it was, but he couldn't slacken if he wanted to get there. No matter how many lives were lost, he had to keep going. Someone had to or everything would be lost, worthless. Wasn't that the whole point in fighting in the first place? There had to be those who continued to fight no matter the circumstance in order for there to be any outcome of use. He couldn't cry, he couldn't stop. He had to continue onwards, for the sake of life after deaths. He was as much a part of this as anybody else.
Cloudy, in the back of his mind, he tried to remember happier times, and wished these upon the future of the Earth and its people. He hoped to have children of his own, even if those weren’t with Hermione. He hoped that the evil would be irradicated from the world. With this final thought, he petrified the enemy and walked away.
Thankfully for Percy, he had spotted Penelope on the other side of the battlefield, before she had spotted him. One look and she might have ran away at top speed, fled, even changed sides. But as it stood, and it seemed that the Earth did indeed stand still to wait for him, he made his way over to her, encircled her from behind, holding her within his arms, and as she turned, she saw him for the first time, in a whole new light. He had grown up so much.
Her black hair contrasted with his own red, and they stood out from the crowd, but whilst the fight continued on around them, a little love amongst all the hate, they fell into one anothers arms, against one anothers lips. In times of greatest hardships, people were indeed torn apart, but they were brought together too, and this was one of those forgivably inconvenient situations where this had happened. There was no time for explanations, as they held one anothers hands, hugged one another close and whispered their 'I love you's so softly into the night. It was about time that they had a little love in their lives. It was very rare that one fell in love with one person and stayed with them for the rest of their lives, but Percy had already let her go once. In his opinion, that was one too many times, and he'd never make the same mistake twice.
"Percy," she mumbled into his lips, pushing him away.
"Penelope?" he frowned with hurted laced in his tone and features, thickly. It was almost as if she had been the one to leave, to do the hurting, but they both knew that that wasn't how it happened.
"This can wait. Please? Just one more night. Until the war is over."
"And what if we don't make it through the war?" he asked, desparate.
"Keep your mind on the task," she said, ever the logic, but a romantic at heart. "We'll discuss it tomorrow. You can't think like that. We'll make it through." She kissed him on top of the head, although she had promised the pair of them all those years back that if he left her then, she would never forgive him for leaving her. She loved him too much not to, and so much time had passed since then. Time healed the wounds, healed the hurt, and sometimes allowed one to forget love. But not this one. Didn't that just prove that this was meant to be?
He looked as she sped away, scattering off into the distance amongst the crowd. He wouldn't follow her, he would continue to fight. Fight for his love now, fight for that tomorrow when he would be forgiven, the most important night of his life. He had never looked forward to something so much, and that made him more eager to get through, more focussed on the task set for him that night. He had more important things to wrry about for not. Like simply getting through. Like his Penny, his Penelope.
I couldn’t hide any longer. I ran forth, thrashing out, determined to bring the murderer and his apprentice to his knees, though I knew it was not my place to do so. Harry tried to stop me, tried to hold me back, but he knew this was coming too. I saw them now, the threstals and the dementors, who came rushing forwards to suck the life out of me. I was a muggle, I wasn’t supposed to be able to see them, and yet even in the dead of night I would recognised those, dark, cloaked figures anywhere. “Harry, Harry, Harry,” mocked Voldemort as he held me back, “you’re only preventing the inevitable. I made her, the ultimate weapon, for my own person use, not for yours. She’ll become mine, and you’ll be six feet under the ground.”
He took out his wand, pointed Harry square in the chest in a threatening gesture. My bleeding wrists made me weak, but as Voldemort swept forth to cease Harry’s life, to cut it from him, I made other plans. How was I to know that at the time I was making a terrible mistake, making life so much harder for Harry in the long run? “Avada Ke-“ I grabbed the wand from him, ripping it out of his grasp. I pointed it at Draco in an attempt to disarm him in case he was next in line.
I knew that I couldn’t hold a wand, couldn’t perform magic, for I was no witch. But there was a strength within me, pulsing through my veins, whiched egged me onwards. “Expelliarmus!” I flew backwards, hitting my head against the tree. It seemed as though my spell had backfired upon myself, leaving me dizzy and dazed.
I scrambled to pick myself up from the floor, exchanging tired looks with Harry as his eyes blazed with fear. For a moment there, perhaps, he had thought I would be gone for good. I had thought it too. I mouthed to him that I was ok, left him to pull out his own wand and begin duelling. The dementors rose up around me, pinning me down as the life was sucked away from me. Voldemort was using another’s wand now, trying to pin Harry to one single spot to deliver the final, crippling blow. I couldn’t allow that to happen, I simply wouldn’t. That would be the worst thing of all. I let tears slide down my cheeks as I thought of happier times, of Hermione, of Ron, of my friends back home, of Ginny and finally of Harry. Those were my favourite memories, the ones that kept me fighting through those moments.
I don’t know how I did it. There was some sort of binding behind what I was doing, a code which pushed me ever onwards in an attempt to recover what had been taken away. They were only fog now, my eyes gold and silver, sparkling as the stars once more came to rest upon the sky. I hardly knew what I was doing, but my limbs knew perfectly well. The dementors faded as every movement I made was so precise and chosen so exactly, though not by myself, by something inside, as if the unicorns were calling for their justice, for their revenge, and unicorns were not vengeful creatures. There was pure light ahead of me, everything seemed so white as I moved ever forwards, in slow motion.
And then suddenly everything crashed as Voldemort delivered that one last powerful blow, “Avada Kedevra!”
“No!” I screamed, lurching out, leaping in front of Harry just in time to stop the world from crashing down. The pain was so much, but I did not die instantly. There were repercussions of having hit me, and there was a shockwave out across the grounds, an earthquake almost, splitting the forbidden forest through and through with irreparable damage. It would be hard to get back now. Draco, Lucius, Narcissa fell to their deaths, a family destroyed by their own misery.
My curse hit those closest to us, Voldemort, his followers, and very few were strong enough to withhold the shocks without wriggling on the floor in the worst pain that they had ever felt. Even Voldemort was paralysed for a few moments, as my eyes rolled in the back of my head. Everything was painful; everything was white, as the light streamed into my eyes once more. There was fear in Voldemort’s eyes. Was this heaven?
I knew he was there, from the way he cradled my head and kissed my lips, trying to revive me. I felt it with those few last breaths as my red and silver blood trickled away through my wrists. I was glad to have played such a part in the war, to have one final kiss, one last moment with my first and only ever love. He was more than the boy who lived to me, he was the very reason that I had ever lived, and it wasn’t that he was going to save the world that had made me jump in front of him. I couldn’t bare to live without Harry. “Please, please don’t leave me,” he sobbed and I wished I could do the same, but I had barely enough energy to keep my heart beating left. I didn’t wasn’t to leave...
If I could tell him only one thing as I let my breath slip away, it was this, “I love you, always remember that.”
“I love you too, and I always will. You’re not going anywhere. Come on, come on, fight!” He kissed my hot lips as they drained and cooled, his pride falling away as he screamed out in agony. He shook me, tried to get me to fight, but no reply came. I had passed on.
Tears shattered his vision, stopped him from seeing clearly and his lack of clarity lead to the following. “No! You bastard! You murderer!” He didn’t even try to fight it now, for he knew that he had lost. Along with me had died the final Horcrux, and the war itself. His weapon had gone, the prophecy fulfilled. One ultimate sacrifice for one ultimate weapon. The power of love. As Harry took up Gryffindor’s sword and cut him in two, Voldemort let himself fall.
That was the only time in his life that Harry Potter ever killed anyone, and I feel sick to my stomach that it was me who caused it to happen, yet so proud of him, for it was necessary. Harry Potter was not, and is not, a murderer. The fighting ceased within the hour, as news spread like wildfire. There were too many casualties to name, but great loves and friends of old were separated between the barrier of life and death. Myself, I regret nothing. I saved Harry, and that was the only thing that really mattered to me at that moment in time, and still to this day I do not regret a moment of it.
This is the story of how I lived for Harry Potter, and how I died for Harry Potter. Nothing but a memory.
Epilogue – Nothing But A Memory
I look down on them now, ten years on, and Harry has never been so handsome in all his life. “Daddy, why must we come here?”
“To pay our respects to those who died so that you could live, honey.”
“Aavalyn, why don’t you go on ahead, so that Daddy and I can lay our roses?”
“I want to lay a rose too,” stubborn. Always stubborn, since the day she was born, much like myself. Aavalyn Potter. It sounded so right, it had always sounded right, from the first moment I thought of it- and yet somehow not.
This is all that was left of that story now. Loves lost and new love found in amongst that hurt. Ginny and Harry had married a year on from that night, and Aavalyn was almost five now. Tears well up in my eyes as I hold Seamus and Jemma’s hands in my own. On Jemma’s right stands Draco, holding her hand and kissing her on top of the forehead. We all look down on the scene before us, all seeing different things, all looking on the memorial day of the day that we died. “I’ll always love you Aavalyn,” a single tear runs down the cheek of Harry Potter himself, as he kisses the grave. He had always believed I belonged here, amongst my friends, but also in a grave of my own. He thought I deserved to be remembered as the most important, the one to save everyone. But he knew that I wouldn’t have liked that.
Ginny lays a rose for her one true love, Seamus. Harry is the only man she could ever dream of being with now. He is the only one that understands. Time has gone so fast, staring at the happiness and sometimes tormenting views that sit before me inside that room. Sometimes they tease me. Sometimes I see things I don’t want to, but I continue to stare, for I love the man who holds now the hand of another woman, one who also lost her love in that terrible battle. She too mourns now, as they had last year and the year before, but she knows that he can never come back. It is a fact we must face everyday.
“Aunt Penelope, Aunt Hermione!” Aavalyn calls as she sees them walking up the path, the men holding back as they whispered to one another. She falls into their arms to calm herself. She doesn’t like today. Today is sad, and she isn’t a sad person.
In this realm, in this new realm where we never grow old, but must watch as our loved ones fade away into nothingness before our very sight, I do the same. I hold her lover’s hand in hope that this somehow links us together more closely. But as they say their goodbyes, pay their respects and give their final ‘I love you’s we are no closer than we were.
Fred approachs, lays his cheek on my forehead as I start to cry lonely, sad and silent tears. “I miss him,” I whisper, “I miss him.”
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