This story is dedicated to Ani, without whom I would be without friendship and loved ones, and this may never have finished.

This story is dedicated to Ahuuda, who talked with me about the world and reminded me that I am small, but I am in no way unimportant.

This story is dedicated to Ruby, who reminds me that my impact transcends time or boundaries set by man.

This story is dedicated to Nelchael, and Wolf, and so many others, who convinced me to think even when I didn't want to.

This story is dedicated to Kelsey, who although we have grown apart in all senses, helped me find my footing and put the first sentences to paper.

This story is dedicated to Pandy, who slept at my side and listened to my chatter, and whose urn keeps me company even now.

This story is dedicated to the reader; I hope you find happiness

Skylar cheered when Remus managed down the porch steps all on his own one nice April morning. He walked down the steps, wobbling a little, but able to walk all on his own.

"Watch out!" Skylar cheered happily, clapping his hands dramatically as Tonks guffawed loudly, "you've got a lady killer on the loose!"

Tonks laughed so hard, her face flushed red and her hair matched it.

She was due any day now, but it didn't matter. Life was better.

The international relations apparently soothed themselves over, various shell companies and international deals came to light with the sudden shift of political leadership in the wake of Voldemort's death. The great food shortage ended when huge amounts of produce was shipped in from where it had, quite literally, been going to rot. It was...horrifying, to see the full manipulations of everyone.

Investigations were being put into place for the various muggle and muggleborn murders during the recession, although Skylar honestly doubted anything would come of it until well into the next decade. Hermione already had been told various possible academic options to try and keep her out of the public eye- she most likely would be a target in the upcoming summer since there were huge swarms of Voldemort supporters still incorporated into society.

Lutain was old snake. Skylar hadn't realized that until he met up with Scamander later on, staying a couple weeks out on the man's animal reservation just to help out the best he could. Scamander was sharp, he clued in a lot faster as to why Skylar was suddenly fond of manual labour. The man wasn't happy, but he couldn't say much.

Aidian Lupin was due any day now; Tonks was huge with pregnancy and graciously accepting everything others practically threw at her. The day Sirius wandered onto the small house and found his friend walking on his own, the man broke into tears and nearly tackled the rehabilitative man to the floor.

Ron went back to his family, preferring to take the next year off before returning to his schooling if only to help soothe the gap of having lost so many siblings. Percy had passed away, and was buried out with Ginny's monument grave. Charlie was severely injured, and it was unlikely that he'd be able to walk without a limp and the uncoordinated left arm. Scamander took him under his wing and instantly hired the man on the spot for one of his many reservations.

Skylar hadn't heard much of the others, he spotted Theodore Nott one day while he was skirting around St. Mungos. Skylar didn't hear the full story, but over a small conversation of complementary tea for waiting visitors, Skylar heard about all of the Slytherins' friends. Draco was under a probationary period of time, originally he was facing a jail sentence before a few other students came to his aid and helped validate his backstory. It was mandated that Draco attend various counseling sessions for grieving families who suffered from Dark Magic Attacks. Skylar thought it was unnecessary.

Daphne Greengrass was institutionalized. Theodore Nott didn't talk about her much.

Skylar spent a lot of his time now with Remus and Tonks, helping out wherever he could. He didn't realize how much work went into a pregnancy, especially when the only other in the house struggled to walk most days. Sirius helped out often, Skylar imagined the man felt guilty he hadn't come by more when the war was at its worst.

Skylar had seen his mother on occasion, he stopped by for his dad's funeral and helped lower his casket into the ground. They met up on occasion in public; he thought she was getting some help as well.

"Look at that bushy tail go!" Tonks shouted, despite the fact that Remus was not at all looking wolf life. Remus playfully scowled at her, which only forced Sirius into wolf-whistling as loud as he could. It ended badly, more of a high pitched shrill noise which startled the massive Elkhound from where it was sleeping by the door. They had adopted it not that long back, finding comfort in something large and docile.

Skylar grinned, leaning back against the tree behind him. Lutain hung on snugly, although his scales and grip wasn't what it used to be. Skylar should have thought of it, a Taipan didn't generally live past seven years.

"Well, isn't this just cozy." Skylar grinned, cheeks flushed in delight. Sirius shifted into his animagus form, the Elkhound perked up in excitement and took off directly afterwards.

Nobody really liked talking about how the castle was damaged- still under renovation. Nobody talked much about Dumbledore or his own tomb made from white marble on the small island in the giant lake near Hogwarts. Nobody talked about how the thestrals all mysteriously vanished that battle, or how a few people could have sworn that they melted away until nothing was left.

"It's getting late, isn't it?" Skylar asked the snake around his neck, gently stroking the black scales, "we'll have to be going soon."

The snake flickered its tongue. Skylar could practically hear the insult.

"Moony! Padfoot! Tonks!" Skylar shouted, waving one arm, "I'm heading out!"

Tonks glanced up with a beaming smile the boy hadn't seen in almost a year, "Okay! Be safe! Send an owl!"

Sirius barked, Remus lifted one arm and all on his own, waved.

Skylar hesitated one moment, watching the scene with an affectionate twist on his mouth. He watched a while longer, before he summoned his courage and turned and hiked into the woods.

Not too many people knew about it, but if you kept walking and walking and walked a bit further, to the point where you felt lost and lonesome and kept walking, you'd find a nondescript grave. It was a nice grave, made out of dark stone that crumbled a bit on the edges. Shale or some other stone that was just as impractical as Adrian's' taste in it. He lived to make other people lives' hell.

Skylar smiled at it, tracing his hand along the small grave. He helped lower it down alongside Scamander, who warded it and contained his remains so that the parasite would never spread any further.

"Well, nice to see you." Skylar greeted the stone. He took a seat, gently sitting on the forest floor in front of the monument. "I know I was here just last day, but well, you know."

The stone didn't answer, but Skylar didn't mind.

"Anyways," Skylar smiled, feeling the April sunshine on his skin. He always felt so cold now. His bones pressed against his skin so sharply; his casual use of magic hadn't been doing him any favours either. "I know that we kinda figured things out at the end but...well.."

Skylar shifted unsure, pulling out his wand to hold gently in his hand. He sniffled, ignoring the small nosebleed and the piercing migraine he was sure was going to pop up.

"Well…" Skylar trailed off unsure, eyes scanning towards the side where a small section of warded ground had been burned into the dirt. He spent nearly a day working on it, copying carefully the intricate little motions and marks Scamander drew out for him.

Lutain shifted, staring at Skylar with old tired eyes.

A wind whispered through the clearing, stirring up some of the dead leaves that survived the winter. Small vegetation was starting to grow; Skylar always did like spring.

"Well Lutain," Skylar hummed, content for the first time in a very long time. "We wouldn't want to keep Adrian waiting."

Luna jerked awake with a gasp.

Her head hurt a little, a small buzzing throb that was fading already. The grass under her was soft, like the moss that nestled between large tree roots.

The air felt crisp and clean, gentle although not humid. She couldn't place the taste in the air, or the strange feeling of familiarity that bothered her.

The sun above her was warm, heating her skin in a way she never thought of much before. It felt wonderful, she wiggled her toes in the light.

She smiled lightly, running fingers through the grass and slight clover that poked up curiously from between the strands. Violets appeared further down, vibrant and pastel in the sunlight.

A bird fluttered above her, large but not one she recognized. It peered down at her, jerking its head to observe her with both eyes.

"Hello," She smiled at the bird, reaching out although she knew she wouldn't be able to touch it. "You're pretty, aren't you?"

Someone chuckled behind her, she nearly launched herself upwards to bounce clumsily off the balls of her feet. She spun around, thankful she was wearing her work trousers although they did have some bright grass stains.

Someone was standing there looking at her, a healthy distance away but still close enough to have seen her when she was asleep. She didn't like that, although something foreign and hazy whispered at her. She didn't like it, and it felt odd.

"Those are some wicked grass stains," The stranger said, seemingly having a strange fixation with her knees, "bloody hell, that's so much better than white dresses."

Luna shifted backwards self-consciously, not liking how the sun made a glare in her eyes. The stranger was taller than her, thin too like a beanpole.

"Who are you?" She asked, careful and cautious. She didn't have her wand on her, which confused her a little bit. She didn't know where she was.

Whoever the man was inhaled sharply, almost baffled.

Then he laughed, a low smooth noise that didn't help her confusion at all.

"Right, yeah," the man stumbled through the words almost giddy, "yeah just, wow. Alright, so uh, my name is Adrian-."

"Adrian?" Luna cut him off, her voice breathy like an exhale, mixed with a gasp and a murmur all in one. The stranger paused, waiting patiently.

Luna took one unsure step forward. The bird was still chirping above them, fluttering its wings on occasion.

She got a bit closer and could see detail, how he wasn't actually thin by build but instead looked horribly thin. Sickly really, his eyes were bright and wrong and felt very ill with the limp broken ends of his hair.

"Hey," he smiled, gums bright and discoloured and teeth seeming too large in his mouth. "It's ah, it's been a while."

Luna stared, and took a half step backwards.

The stranger's face twitched, faltering slightly, then one hand ran anxiously through his hair. It parted it, and maybe it was the light or maybe it was the familiar nervous gesture, but something in it worked and then Luna was smiling timidly.

"Adrian?" She asked quietly, wanting to step back but also run forward, "I- you-."

Adrian, (that smile could only be him) beamed. His entire face lit up, the scars on his face contorted and the concave hollows of his cheeks looked worse. His eyes looked feral and bright and he looked like a skeleton.

His voice though, was so happy and recognizable.

"Yes!" He urged excitedly, "I- I hadn't realized how much I changed. I didn't think about it, I- I'm sorry,"

Luna cautiously came closer, until she reached out and took one of his long bony hands in hers. She twisted it, flipping it over and over to trace the small pock marks and scars from something, and the way the joints stuck out so far.

"You look horrible." Luna's nose wrinkled as she spotted the colour of his veins and arteries, "worse than usual."

Adrian laughed, beaming. "Right, yeah, I mean, I'm disgusting for sure. Wow, I haven't heard you insult me in forever."

Luna felt whiplash, " want me to insult you?"

Adrian grinned brightly, "I'm not that sensitive anymore. Oh, I have so much to tell you. Do you remember anything about being a thestral?"


"About me being Harry Potter? Or killing my father- Voldemort, although James Potter is dead too I think-."

Luna made a small noise of distress. Adrian grabbed her, yanked her into his chest and hugged her so tight she couldn't breathe.

"Let me out!" She yowled in surprise and sudden delight. "This isn't fair! It's illegal!"

"You going to send a howler after me?" He shouted back, folding backwards to send both of them to the ground. The grass absorbed their impact, catching them as they defied gravity.

"Adrian Selwyn you are the worst!"

"I know!" Adrian cheered in delight, "Oh my- okay Luna, Luna so. So I went off and I broke a dragon out of Gringotts!"

She gaped in surprise, "you did not."

"I did!" Adrian chortled in delight, "It was after Skylar and Scamander met up-."

"Stop!" Luna cried, dramatically flinging her arms around, "you- you mean you talked to Skylar Potter! Civilly?"

Adrian grinned, and Luna wasn't so sure the sun was above her.

"I did!"

"And you met Newt Scamander?"

"I think I threw my drink at him!" Adrian was nearly cackling in delight, "I threw my drinks at a lot of people! Both metaphorically and literally! I also set a lot of buildings on fire, Luna! So many buildings!"

Luna opened her mouth, closed it, and failed to stop the bubble of confused and exhilarated laughter from breaking through her mouth.

'I think I'm going to like it here,' she thought to herself happily.

"Hey Luna? What's the last thing you ever said to me?"

Luna looked at Adrian, tilting her head in thought before she shrugged. "I don't remember. Does it really matter?"

Adrian threw his head back with a loud laugh,

and finally,

felt at peace.

Thank you all, for joining me on this adventure. It was rough at times, difficult and painful to us all, but we've made it in the end, haven't we?

I originally wrote this story as a challenge to myself, something to pass the time. This changed, and with my love and all of you, this became our passion.

It wasn't easy, even I can say that, but this story was made to be realistic. Nothing is easy, we all have our struggles that we smile through. We learned our lessons, or maybe we read them and recognized them.

Don't waste your life trying to impress people that don't care about you.

Even if you do everything right, you may still fail.

Don't neglect your health; physical, mental.

Find your passion, even if it's small or unimportant; it will save you when you feel lost.

Family doesn't depend on your birth.

People lie to you, people betray you, people love you.

You are not invincible, no matter how intelligent or strong. Your actions have consequence.

We make our own path, we fight our own monsters no matter how innocent they seem.

We all have a bit of Adrian Selwyn in us, and I finished this tragedy with him healing.

I hope, that somewhere along the way, you have as well.

Questions and Answers:

How did you come up with the idea?

The first fanfiction I ever read was a story called Fate's Favourite. It wasn't complete at the time, but the style of writing and the creative opportunities it gave me made me instantly fall in love with darker styles of writing. I wanted to make a Wrong-Boy-Who-Lived, because It seemed the easiest way to make someone evil to my 12 year old mind. I decided to redo the story, because the plot and attempt behind my younger self were quite good, but the execution was absolute agony.

Why were they named that way they were?

Skylar was named Skylar because in Shadowed Malice he was named as such. I think I just really liked the name when I was younger. Adrian was selected because 'Hadrianus' was close enough to work from Harry, and it had a name meaning which meant 'dark', because I love throwing in little Easter Eggs.

How long did this take?

Two years, 4 months I believe?

Any random tidbits you didn't plan that are in there?

Yes. A lot. Almost all of the humour scenes are spontaneously written, a lot of the last minute additions are things I throw in towards the end of the chapter. Small tidbits, single poetic lines that I like that fit in well. I originally didn't plan for Theo to have a role at the end. I didn't plan for the ending to be as optimistic either. Keeping Remus alive was a spontaneous addition, I had already drafted him as being dead but changed it right before posting. Ironically enough, Luna dying was a last minute addition that I wrote in a single moment in the edit section on the website for posting.

Did it just sit on your drive for awhile? If so how long?

No. I wrote the prologue, and I posted it likely within the day. At one point up until little over halfway in the story, I stayed constantly 20 chapters ahead of the posting date. Eventually, that stopped, and for almost the last third of the story I was writing and posting chapter by chapter basis. It never really sat for any point.
Did you ever lose interest in writing Antithesis? If so what brought you back?

Yes. I lost inspiration because I wasn't able to talk or interact with anyone. I thought people lost interest, and I too lost inspiration. I started talking to my cat, and although she couldn't understand it I felt better and I gained my passion back because I was able to think creatively and continue. My cat unfortunately passed away in February (2018), although I should have made her my co-author. Sometimes just talking about what you love is enough to bring it back.
Did you always have to be in one specific mood or mindset to write?

No, not necessarily. I get into incredibly focused mindset, so obsessively...directed, where I forget the passage of time and I forget what thought is. I don't have active ideas or trails of intent, I simply type and it's a surprise to everyone what comes out. I write from 11:30 am to 2:30 pm on Mondays and Wednesdays, and in that little time I create a chapter. Then I forget about it or post it the next day, sometimes I wait a bit longer. I cannot stress how much this story was a pleasure for me, it was a moment to relax and create instead of dealing with academics or other work.

How were you able to balance your daily life with writing this near constantly?

Well, that's a bit tricky to explain. I write in one sitting, I take a seat and have a coffee or a cat near me, and I type. My hands cramp or maybe my laptop dies because I forgot about battery charge, and that's that. I do what life demands of me, and when I need to breathe I write. Maybe sometime I'll have a book on the shelf, and it'll be your relaxing break just like writing was mine.

Why did you decide to write Antithesis in such a depressing way?

There's a unique flair to writing depressing things. It's an untouched area of writing- sure there are sad books or movies, but nobody ever writes the taboo. Nobody writes about how much you want to scream. Nobody writes about the days you're too tired to breathe. Maybe I pushed too far or the story was too depressing for others, but that's okay. Someone maybe loved it just enough, that it made their day better.

How much of Antithesis is taken from Shadowed Malice?

About all of the school years. It deviated around the fourth book, and never focused much on Luna. Adalonda wasn't...herself. Adrian never went mad in that book. It was like a child's crayon drawing of this, although I suppose I did make it when I was 12. I'm more proud of Antithesis than any other story.

Why did you change so much of the certain plots, or what made you turn from certain plot points and make the new ones?

I went for realism. I made Adrian weak because we all are. I made him fragile because we all are. I made him volatile and cruel and anxious and depressed and I made him feel far too much, because we do too. I wanted realism, the ideas of Shadowed Malice were too OC focused and impractical. They were foreign and focused on the wrong parts when I wanted something that hurt us on a visceral level.

Mermaid scaly creature in the fountain that had a bigger part in Shadowed Malice; why was it made so much smaller and less relevant?

It seemed out of place to create an entirely new creature that had strange powers. Even the Shades from Shadowed Malice felt wrong, I didn't want to create an entire new culture and species from nothing. That's why I had the Thestrals- they represent the new culture and mindset and personality of everything the shades were.

Why did you turn Luna into a thestral instead of just dead?

Because in real life, our mistakes don't go away until we accept them emotionally and do something about them.

Why did you focus so much on magical creatures?

My personality and interest shining through. I have animals of my own, a dog, a tortoise, a lizard who passed in the writing of this fic, a snake I housed due to this story, two cats I adopted for the long nights, and my one cat who passed in February (2018) who should have been listed as my co-author. She likely wrote a paragraph of this story from the instances she prowled across my keyboard.

Why did you give so much time to develop side characters (Theo, Daphne, Ron and Hermione?)

I hate bashing. I hate the idea of writing bashing because everyone has a personality and a mindset that is unique to them, and is formed by their life and experiences. Maybe you don't like a character, that is completely fine. You shouldn't like Adrian, most people don't like Skylar. I wanted to give you an option, a choice and a decision where you formed your own opinion based on the actions I wrote. You never know the experiences of others.

Are you going to write more?

Of course, but this story has said all the messages I have left to write. A different pasture now. Let the dead stay peaceful.

Are you happy this is over?

Do you believe the 5 stages of grief for the past chapter titles were written for the characters? They were written, for you and I.

What are the main messages you wanted people to hear when reading antithesis?

This is a tricky question to answer.

People have asked me throughout the story repeatedly, "what exactly is wrong with Adrian?" We as people relate to things we recognize. We find comfort in familiarity, we like the people we view ourselves in. That's why I never specifically answered it. I never explicitly said what Adrian's relationship is with Luna, I never explicitly said what Adrian's disorders are. If you write a character who is in a firm relationship, you exclude the few readers who do not identify with that orientation. If you give an explicit diagnoses, you ostracized those who judge themselves against that. Adrian has a disorder, sure, he has what you need. Some days there is no sunshine and no hope or point: some days Adrian feels the same. Some days everything is too fast and all your worries and pressure builds until it explodes: sometimes Adrian feels the same. Someday, maybe Adrian wishes he were dead; maybe someone out there needed to read something similar to know they're not alone. I want this story to be the opportunity you don't have, I want Adrian screaming at James and Lily to be the words you could never say to abusers. I want Adrian's laughter and acceptance to be your catharsis.

I want you to identify with Adrian, because here at the end, he found peace.

(It's time you find it too.)